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Homemade Pretzels

I haven't made homemade pretzels since we were in Alabama and I had forgotten how easy they are if not a little time consuming. I made these last week for Oscar night. They keep a long time in an airtight container. 1   (.25 ounce) package   active dry yeast 1 tablespoons   brown sugar 1  teaspoons   salt 1 ½   cups   warm water (110 degrees) 3   cups   all-purpose flour 1   cup   bread flour 2   cups   warm water (110 degrees) 2   tablespoons   baking soda 1-2   tablespoons   butter, melted 2   tablespoons  kosher salt Line two or three baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. Place the yeast, brown sugar and salt in the 1.5 cups of warm water. Stir to dissolve. Stir in the flour. Knead for about 7-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl and cover. Let it rise for an hour (I place mine in the oven with the light on). Combine the two cups of warm water with the baking soda in a square shallow pan. After the dough has risen, cut it into 12 equal pieces.  Roll each section into a

Morning Sunshine

sunrise4 This morning I was having a cup of coffee and glanced outside and noticed the sun coming up and casting a very cheery effect on the autumn foliage. I grabbed the camera and went outside in my robe and house shoes and was taking photos. It was very cold this morning! But that is nothing compared to this weekend when Sunday's high will only be in the 30s.

Everyone is saying that we are in for a cold winter. I hear this every year but this time I think they may be correct. It seems that the colors of the Japanese maples have intensified over the past week. The trees around town and those on the UNA campus are just spectacular. I love this time of year!
sunrise6 Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy


  1. The autumn foliage looks so pretty in the morning light. All of our foliage is down for the year. I should say all except the Japanese maples and they look like dirty rags hanging there. ugh... Love the early morning and late evening light this time of year.

  2. Hi Phillip, I don't know a lot about photography but I think it's hard to capture the light this time of year, especially in the morning. You did it! Beautiful scenes from your lovely garden.

  3. Great shots Phillip. The garden still looks beautiful but also sad because we know what's around the corner!
    Hope the prediction of bad winter is wrong

  4. A coat last week, shirt sleeves today and a coat Sunday? I'm not complaining about the changeable weather. As long as we have warm days, I'll take 'em however they get here. I think we are going to have a cold winter too. When it gets this cold in November, it's like sneezing and coughing, you know what's coming.

    Beautiful pictures!

  5. Philip… I need to tell you once again how much I enjoy the photos you post. I often peruse blogs from my recliner with my i-pad and for some reason it doesn't allow me to comment… so I made a short trip to the i-mac this morning to let you know I'm enjoying your posts! Larry

  6. Thanks Larry! I enjoy your posts too!

  7. So pretty. We had such a long, lovely fall that I am missing it today. Sleet fell all day. It's about 25F out there. Brrr. I'm glad I have the greenhouse to keep me warm.~~Dee

  8. Autumn at your house is incredible, so much color! Your fall color is where ours was a few weeks ago. That first picture made me catch my breath, with the morning light shining in.


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