Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Postcards From the Lake: A Fond Farewell and a Recipe

All good things come to an end. After all that glorious color, those crisp days and crispier nights, it was time to wrap up our summer -- and early fall -- at the lake.


For me, that meant a final trip to the farmer's market.


It's much smaller by the time you get to October but there are plenty of apples to be had. . . 


. . . and pumpkins, too.


I even scored a half-bushed of Roma tomatoes from one of my favorite vendors who is retiring after this season. Sauce will be made -- and soon!


Rick had a friend come north to join him for some cycling. A cold day (45 degrees) with 25 mile/hour winds brought them home hungry! 


Any doubts about the wind were resolved with a look at the whitecaps on the lake!

But after dinner, they still had the energy for a good Scrabble game. . . 


. . . and were game to go riding again!


For me, it was one last walk down my favorite road.


Leaves were falling, stuck to the damp pavement but still bright and beautiful.


We had one last evening, just us two. A wonderful dinner of stuffed acorn squash (recipe below).


And a warm, cozy spot for a cat to rest her head! 

The next morning it was time to finish packing, clean up and turn off the water. That meant a lot of sit-around-and-wait-time while it drained.


Rick's friend, Bill, graciously loaded up his car with a lot of what we had to come home. It was a good thing, because our car was loaded to the very tip-top.


Somewhere in there you could find a cat! 


I dropped Rick off about 50 miles away so he could ride home. 


And I ended the trip with a stop at the cider mill.


Biggest sigh. The end of the season.


Goodbye, Lake. See you next year.

Baked Stuffed Acorn Squash


The hardest part of this recipe is cutting the squash in half! Remove the seeds, cut off a bit on the bottom so it sits up and rub a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper over the surface. Bake at 400, right-side up on a cookie sheet for about a half hour and turn over for another 15-30 minutes or so till the squash is soft.

Meanwhile, do the stuffing. You can do this two ways. Up north, I took the easy way out, using a seasoned rice mix and making it to the package directions. (Wild or brown rice is especially delicious but the seasonings make a dif, so find your favorites.) OR use the rice you already have and add your own seasonings. When I do this at home I add whatever herbs I find (thyme, basil, oregano, whatever!), some good salt and pepper, and some cinnamon, which gives it a bit of a Moroccan flavor. You know what you like!

While the rice is cooking, brown 3/4-1 pound of Italian sausage, spicy or sweet. Then combine the rice with the sausage.

When the squash is soft, pull from the oven and fill the cavity with the sausage/rice mixture. Cover the top with grated cheese, your favorite. (I like sharp white cheddar) and bake another 10-15 minutes. Serve with a salad (and Ina's apple crisp makes a great dessert!) Don't be surprised if your guests ask for more of the sausage stuffing -- and you'll have plenty to accommodate their requests. (Rick even liked it leftover the next day for lunch!)

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62 comments:

Carole @ From My Carolina Home said...

Lovely fall photos! I'm cooking an acorn squash for our supper tonight. It is that time of year!

Salty Pumpkin Studio said...

Sad farewell lake
Lovely photos and goodby
The stuffed squash sounds delicious, and simple to make.

Rustic Pumpkin said...

How your heart must ache leaving all that behind for another year.
Don't you think the men are a bit like spaniels? They wear themselves out, have a 5 minute recharge and then they're ready to go again.
Having been given a load of different squash and pumpkins I might try one of the smaller ones stuffed using your recipe idea. Moroccan spices do lend themselves very well to squash and pumpkins, I think. They're really taking off in this country. My shopping has just arrived; it is full of Moroccan, North African and Eastern Mediterranean style seasonings and products.
Thank you for your lovely comment on my blog recently too.

Breathtaking said...

Hello Jeanie :=)

Your recipe looks delicious, and I am going to try making it. Your car looks like ours used to look after a holiday in our home in the south of Portugal, packed to the ceiling, with our dog in its bed, somewhere in the middle.:=) All good things come to an end. Happy and safe journey back home.
All the best.

Steve Reed said...

Well I'm sure it feels melancholy to say goodbye to the lake, but what a beautiful day you had. (And it must feel good to be home!) Your cat doesn't look very happy with that carrier. :)

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

Yum! That stuffed squash recipe looks awesome. I will have to make this for myself sometime this fall. I am the only squash eater in our house unfortunately!

The end of a beloved season is always so sad. Plus you know what is coming when it's time to say goodbye to the cottage for the year. I am glad you have this wonderful oasis to enjoy during the warm months, though!

Valerie-Jael said...

You will miss the lake, but next year it will be waiting for you again! Hope you settle in well back home! Hugs, Valerie

kathyinozarks said...

Good morning, it is so beautiful there on your lake! We had white caps here too most every morning this week.
You have much prettier fall leaves than we have here in this area of the ozarks.
Wonderful to have a farmer's market nearby. Since moving here after retirement from northern Illinois we really miss the fall squashes very much, in this area they ripen too fast do to the hot summers and never have good flavors-we really miss a good acorn squash-your recipe sounds delicious-hugs

Debra@CommonGround said...

I know you've loved spending this time at the lake and we've all enjoyed you sharing it. How fortunate you are to have such a lovely place to relax and unwind with nature. Such a sweet kitcat. Going on a trip is tough for all of us, tehe!

gigi-hawaii said...

That squash sounds delicious! I love that top photo of the lake with the white caps. Looks like a painting! Good job!

Bill said...

So sad leaving the lake behind for another season but when it's time to return you will be excited once again. Lovely fall photos, the market sounds great. Enjoy your week.

Sue in Suffolk said...

Sad to be saying goodbye to the lake for this year but the way the days fly by it will be time to go there again before you know it.
Lovely photos

My name is Erika. said...

Oh yes. It is that time of year. Too bad autumn, my favorite season,also means closing up favorite places and gardens ending. I have been volunteered by the hubby to help him cover up the boat this Sunday. That season is over now too. It we do have thanksgiving and Christmas to look forward too. Your squash looks yummy and those whitecaps feel cold even looking at the photo. Happy
Mid-week. Hope it Isn’t too cold where you are. Hugs Erika

R's Rue said...

Beautiful my friend.

anno said...

It's so beautiful up at the lake, it must be hard to know you have to leave, that if you stay even a week or two longer, there may still be beauty, but it's harder to enjoy if you're miserable with cold. Looks like you were able to take in every last drop of the pleasure that was on offer, though.

Also, that acorn squash looks amazing. And I'm someone who doesn't especially like acorn squash. This recipe, though, looks like something I might have to try. Thanks!

acorn hollow said...

Spring will be here before we know it again! At least I hope.
The stuffed squash looks so good
Cathy

DVArtist said...

It is just beautiful there. Thanks for the recipe too.

Prims By The Water said...

Yes the season is over. Are you counting the days to when you will be able to go back. I know I would be as it is always bittersweet when you have to leave your beloved lake. The river over here has been gray with rainy cold days lately over here. Summer is indeed over. On to the next season. Janice

Red Rose Alley said...

Oh my, your Fall is coming to an end at the lake? Our Fall is just starting here in the mountains. It's been fun to see all the different Autumns with my blog friends. Your stuffed acorn squash looks really good. That was so nice of Rick's friend to haul some of your stuff home. I will miss seeing your glorious Autumn colors, Jeanie. There's nothing like a good farmer's market, is there? And a dear cat trying to stay warm by the heater. How precious is that. I'm wondering if you get the lovely colors at your permanent house? A wonderful post today, Jeanie.

~Sheri

Pam Richardson said...

It must be bittersweet leaving your much-loved lake cabin every fall. The autumn photos you have shared have been splendid. Thank you for the yummy squash recipe!

Misadventures of Widowhood said...

The squash looks to die for. I've got to buy some soon. Closing the cottage is a special kind of sadness, isn't it. Hopefully the winter will go fast.

Anvilcloud said...

I'm not a squash sorta guy but it looked good.

Poor cat did not appear to be looking forward to the trip.

The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen said...

Oh Jeanie, I know it's hard for you to leave your happy place! Wow, white caps on the lake--Your colorful leaves are so vibrant. Our Autumn is just taking off and we have some good color here and there. Tonight we may have our first frost--gas logs are on here! Love seeing how active Rick is! I'll have to try your recipe as it looks wonderful! Happy Autumn days to you, my friend!

Iris Flavia said...

Yes, pumpkin time (for Ingo) here, too! I just wonder in the aftermath why we skipped the market all summer....
Oh, your lake, so beautiful.
I never played scrabble... I think not that popular here.
And Lizzie :-)
So sad when the dark half of the year takes over. Already 06:23 a.m and still pitch dark.
The Squash sounds yummy (but a lot of work?).
Good bye to the season, but that´s life, right...
(having my microwave-tiger under my jumper....)

Cindy said...

It would be hard to say goodbye to that beautiful lake every year! Glad the transition went well.

roentare said...

The farm produce is fantastic to look at. So lively. The scenery are just so good in your season.

David M. Gascoigne, said...

The great thing is, Jeanie, you know that cottage will be there again next year, and you will have this fun all over again. In the meantime maybe a few get togethers with the Cork Poppers, a night at the theatre, cozy times with Rick, a glass of wine or two.......

Mae Travels said...

The end of summer always seems sad to me, even though I don't have a separate summer home.

Your squash sounds good. The stuffing would also be good if baked in a pie pumpkin, cut and cleaned out like an edible jack-o-lantern. Have you ever tried baking the whole squash for a while before (more easily) cutting it in half and discarding the seeds? Then stuffing it -- it will stand up more easily for the remainder of the baking time, as it's pre-softened.

best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

Rita said...

What a difficult place to tear yourself away from.
I admire your hubby's stamina for biking! Nice that he had some biking with a friend in such beautiful country, too.
The stuffed squash sounds and looks delicious!!
Enjoy your weekend. :)

Sharon in Las Cruces NM said...

Wow, loved your "time at the lake adventures" this year. this last post so colorful and am trying the recipes for a girls gathering next month.
thank you for your fabulous sharing of your life at the lake.
take care and keep enjoying life!

La Table De Nana said...

I love stuffed acorn squash..these things are so hard to cut lol I hear you..and butternut..
Love the pumpkins pic.Lovely light.

Linda @ Life and Linda said...

A lovely post to say goodbye to the lake. The stuffed acorn sounds delicious. The trees are beautiful. Farmer’s markets are so fun.

Marilyn Miller said...

Now I am wishing I bought the acorn squash at the market recently. Next time. That does sound good.
The leaves are so gorgeous. The stop at the Cider Mill looked like it would be fun. You will miss your tomato farmer, but enjoy the tomato sauce.
I am always reminded of a friend that has passed when I see Scrabble being played. He was a Scrabble champion and loved the game.
What a Fall/Autumn post.

Carol @Comfort Spring Station said...

Great recipe. I love simple recipes with real food and this one is a winner. Sorry this season is ending, but you have Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year on the horizon. Lovely photos today.

It's me said...

Everything comes to a end ….but fall season is also beautiful…lovely weekend…from me and Leaf πŸ€πŸΎπŸ§‘πŸ„πŸ‚πŸŒ½πŸŒΎπŸπŸŒ»πŸ€

Linda P said...

You both made the most of the last days you had at the lake. It's sad to pack up and bid farewell to that way of life until you return in the future. I've enjoyed reading your lakeside posts where you generously entertain friends and have fun.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Oh, Jeanie! You scared me! When I saw "Fond Farewell," I thought, Oh no, she's ending the blog! Whew! Beautiful photos as always. Yummy recipe. I'll have to send you my little watercolor sketch of an acorn squash. Happy Autumn!

NanaDiana said...

It is always a bit sad when summer season ends and you have to close up your summer place. We used to do that with the camper every year until we sold it.

Your squash sounds delicious! I have one I have to ix soon.

Rick's bike ride looks pretty cold to me-but good for him! xo Diana

eileeninmd said...

Hello,
I know you will miss the lake cottage, the fall scenery is gorgeous.
Your car looks stuffed, just enough room for your sweet kitty.
The stuffed Acorn Squash look yummy, thanks for sharing the recipe.
Take care, enjoy your day!

Sandra Cox said...

That squash looks delish. And the pictures of the lake--postcard purrfect.
How are you feeling?

DUTA said...

It seems Rick is a passionate bicycle rider. Kudos to him!
As for the beautiful lake, who knows what Climate change has in store for it.
These days, people are advised to keep away from living near a body of water; they ignore that, of course.

Divers and Sundry said...

Gorgeous scenery. I'm kinda wishing your place was winterized so I could get updates during all four seasons ;)

Lowcarb team member said...

Yes, sad to be saying goodbye to the lake for this year, but the way the days and weeks fly by you will be there again before you know it!
You've shared some lovely photographs.
Thanks too for sharing your recipe.

All the best Jan

Sandi Magle said...

Oh, Jeanie, I know just how you feel. We used to visit my parent's cottage in Mid Wisconsin at the end of the season usually 3rd week in October...and gosh the smell of burning leaves, wrapping up all the bedding, food stuffs, mouse-proofing and gutter cleaning...usually during glorious Fall days. But, you never knew if you could get snowed in...any later. Hugs, and such gorgeous color in your photos...Sandi

William Kendall said...

Pretty colours. I can practically hear Lizzie meow her outrage at being subjected to the carrier.

Friko said...

How very sad. I try very hard to believe that not being out of doors is good for me and that the endless days of gardening time working (gently) in the garden were bound to end some day but it's still hard. I need to get into daily walking habits and enjoy coming back to a cosy chair and a book.
On the other hand, I could start regular blogging again and find pleasure in connecting with old blogging friends.

Carola Bartz said...

I can understand that it must be hard to leave the cottage and the lake. But it will be waiting for you next year, and that is something wonderful to look forward to. In between, have cosy evening in front of the fire with some hot cocoa or a glass of good wine.

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz said...

I feel your sadness about leaving such a gloriously beautiful place. I think we always wonder if it might be the last time we are going to be there.

Sami said...

It must be sad to say goodbye to your lake house and all the beautiful things around it. Lizzie seems to travel well. I can't even try and put my Twiggy in the car and she will howl all the way to the vet (just a 10min trip).

Jenny Woolf said...

I don't know what it is about my cooker but it just won't roast stuff. I am not sure if it runs too cold, or what. The whole stove is very unsatisfactory and I'd love to change it, but most of the cookers these days are EXACTLY 600mm and our stone worktops are EXACTLY 600mm too. I know, we could get in a stonemason to shave off 2 mm from the counters but after 5 months on redoing a small bathroom we have had enough of house renovations for a looooooong time !

Preppy Empty Nester said...

Hello dear Jeanie...That squash recipe looks so delish. Sounds like all went well with closing up the house. Have a wonderful weekend, dear Jeanie!

Rita C at Panoply said...

I love living at your lake vicariously! Happy trails to going home for the rest of fall and winter.

Pamela said...

It seems like summer was just starting and now it’s over. What a lovely escape you have!

Joyful said...

Beautiful photos. You are lucky to have a neighbour help get your things home. I see Lizzie tucked in. I never thought to ask how she manages the travel. My late cat used to hate it and she was terrified of it. I only took her on a return road trip once. Nothing I did could calm her and the trip took 5 hours one way. Then when we got to our destination she managed to go outdoors and get lost. I truly thought I'd never see her again but one night during the pouring rain she meowed loudly at my sissie's back door and that is how we were reunited. Cats, eh? LOL. I am guessing Lizzie does much better since she's travelled so often to the lake. I hope you are now settled back in the city.

Veronica Lee said...

Love, love, love all your fall photos.
That stuffed squash looks amazing!

It would be so hard to say goodbye to that beautiful lake.


Hugs and blessings, Jeanie πŸ’

GretchenJoanna said...

Your pictures and story are so evocative -- If one has to say good-bye, your last days were on the SWEET side of bittersweet.

shoreacres said...

I've never stuffed a squash with anything but apples/raisins/nuts and such. I'll have to give this approach a try. It certainly would make it more of a one-dish meal than a side.

thepaintedapron.com said...

Lovely Fall photos Jeanie, and yes please on the stuff acorn squash! Acorn squash is one of my favorite Fall foods, and I haven't made it this year, I think I'll make some tonight! Thanks for the inspiration!
Jenna

Amy at Ms. Toody Goo Shoes said...

I know exactly how you feel closing up a seasonal home! It's so hard to leave not only the physical place but the lifestyle, too. Take those memories home, and hold them close during the winter months - hopefully they will keep you warm!

Danielle L Zecher said...

Lizzie didn't look very happy about traveling!

That squash recipe looks great! I love acorn squash and am always happy to find more things to do with it.

Angelsdoor * Penny said...

Thank you Jeanie. I have had a burst of creativity and have worn my pencils down. I am so happy you enjoyed viewing.
blessings,
Penny

Victoria Zigler said...

The recipe sounds great. Though I'd try it without the sausage, of course.

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