Mighty Life List
Oct 28 2010

Go berry picking? Check.

Blackberries were a big part of my childhood, some of you may remember that Berry was my maiden name. We had blackberries in the backyard, and when we went camping, I would spend hours on my own picking berries so we could have blackberries and heavy cream for breakfast. My hands were purple all summer.

My gathering instinct is still strong — the idea of free food is exciting. You do the work, and then you have your bowl of berries right in front of you. So direct, and different from the kind of work I usually do.

It’s been years since I’ve gone picking, and this summer we nearly went the whole season without staining our fingers. The Life List reminded me that it was time to get out and do it. The berries are right there, we just had to choose an afternoon for picking.

It’s been a busy couple of months, so I have some catching up to do on my five things in three months goal — November 15 is approaching like a freight train. How are your goals coming along, lovies?

19 Responses to “Go berry picking? Check.”

  • Shevon Says:

    So fun!
    When I get back to the States in November we’re going to hit up Joe’s Cable Car and that will complete my lifelist item to go to three of the places from Diners Drive-Ins and Dives.

  • Lauren Says:

    I finally took surfing lessons! And I am attacking my goal of reading all of Joan Didion and all of Margaret Atwood. :) Next up will be getting that tree tattoo I’ve always wanted.

  • Funnelcloud Rachel Says:

    Ooh, this one was on my life list, too and I crossed it off earlier this summer – so fun. We went to a u-pick farm and I hope to make it a yearly tradition. So jealous that it is still berry season out there!

    As for the list – just got back from our RV trip a few days ago – amazing!

  • Elly Says:

    Oh <3, I LOVE blackberry picking! Fighting your way through the brambles to get the best ones . . .

    And for the list? Brilliant – In the last month I made cheese, planted a lime tree + got my full license! Woo!

  • Laura Jane Says:

    I am finally getting back into my yoga practice and loving it. Today I practiced kundalini next to one of the kids from So You Think You Can Dance. A humbling experience to be sure.

    Also I am making serious gains in starting a bilingual parent-toddler communication group (a la Mommy n Me) at My Place of Employment. I’m feeling more excited about and fulfilled by my job than I have in a very long time.

    And my boyfriend surprised me with a blow torch tonight (romantic, no?) which means I can tackle cooking another recipe that terrifies me: creme brulee!!

    Cheers!

  • linds Says:

    Dude, you need a good bra to hike those boobies back up where they belong. Congrats on the berry picking!

  • MOMSICLE VIBE Says:

    Oh these photos are glorious! I had the joy of sharing fresh berries with my toddler this summer. We picked luscious mounds of blackberries every week for as long as we could… My tastebuds are now in mourning…

  • Kat Says:

    Oh man, I also grew up with blackberry bushes in my backyard, and it’s something I have always associated with summer and my birthday (which is in July). I miss the berry picking, and any time I get blackberries around, it is shocking how much they take me right back to being eight or nine years old again.

    Of my five things to do by January 1, I have so far finished one of them. I still have to: learn how to play backgammon, make tortillas, finish my Associate’s Degree, and buy another cashmere sweater.

    I had a portrait painted of my childhood teddy bear that you can see here. It’s beautiful and I am so glad I made it one of my goals!

  • Maren Says:

    Oh, that third picture just PULLED at my heart. I lived in the redwoods in Monte Rio for two years of my childhood and my street looked exactly like that. And every July we’d pick blackberries all down the road to make into cobbler for my mother’s birthday. It was a little too far from civilization to stay there forever, but I do cherish those two years on River Road, in the woods.

  • Jan Says:

    I miss berry picking! I used to work summers at the uPick near my Grampie’s house and love and miss Nova Scotia strawberries as a result (hmmm, that’s on my life list too but didn’t manage it this summer).

    3 goals in 3 months are (mostly) progressing!

    -Show Andy how much fun Oktoberfest in Munich can be (done and done, though my liver isn’t thanking me)
    -Vroom! Vroom! Get my Irish drivers license (against all odds and the scary school-run mum drivers that I had to navigate against, I got it October 5th and put to bed 8 years of worrying about it)
    -Take fancy dress for Halloween VERY seriously – currently failing at this task due to the non-arrival of my costume so will be getting down, dirty and mighty crafty this evening to whip up a costume out of whatever’s in my closet, some scotch tape and twine (you know, MacGyver style!)

  • Colleen Says:

    Great post. On a totally unrelated note, where did you get that blue plaid shirt? I love it!

  • BethB Says:

    In reading the comments, I think I will add to my lifelist “praying no one ever tells me how much I need to hike my boobies back up” on my blog. Ouch. It’s enough that my kid keeps asking me if I am pregnant (hopefully) and I am not … in the shower where I cannot blame clothing. I say, definitely scuba dive. It’s glorious. Good luck with your list!

  • Meg Says:

    It’s true. When I’m up in that particular town in the summer, we have berries every morning at breakfast, because I’m a gatherer.

    On the life list front, things are proceeding rather excellently. CHEERS!

  • latenac Says:

    We go strawberry, raspberry and blueberry picking every summer. I love marking the cycle of summer by doing this. Not to mention the freezer full of berries in January.

    I’m almost done with knitting a real life sweater. I’ve sourced pork belly for making my own bacon. And next week my daughter and I will plant bulbs for her “bit of earth” to garden in. The last was recently added as I’ve been reading her The Secret Garden and she really wants a garden patch of her own.

  • Maggeh Says:

    Colleen, the shirt is H&M.

    Linds, it’s nice to know someone out there is still looking at my boobs.

  • Tamera Says:

    I am working on learning how to play the ukulele and am having so much fun! I’ll be playing it for my school’s talent show in December while some of my students and fellow teachers sing. Perhaps I’ll send you a video of the performance :)

    Also, berry gathering tip: If you are concerned about thorns, wear hip-waders. My friend and I would wear them at the resident camp we worked at and would spend hours off picking massive amounts of berries. Good times.

  • Kelsey Says:

    Hey Maggie! This is my first time commenting on your website. I just wanted to tell you that you inspired me to start my own Life List about a week ago. I’ve already crossed one thing off, “Attend a political rally in DC”. It’s been really cool how family and friends have jumped in to support my List! Can’t wait to work on some more stuff. So thanks, and good luck with yours!

  • Andrea Says:

    Oh my god, oh my goodness, yum yum yum yum yum….yum. Yes, the memories of blackberry picking ring loud in my mind also. Floating down the river in the sunshine stillness on an old leaky lilo, with an Esky full of freshly picked blackberries from the other side floating along behind. fingers, mouth and tshirt stained a new kind of purple, and a lull in the belly from all the eating.

    Unfortunately the spray them around here these days……so you can never know if it is safe to pick or not. :(

  • Andrea Says:

    Oh my god, oh my goodness, yum yum yum yum yum….yum. Yes, the memories of blackberry picking ring loud in my mind also. Floating down the river in the sunshine stillness on an old leaky lilo, with an Esky full of freshly picked blackberries from the other side floating along behind. fingers, mouth and tshirt stained a new kind of purple, and a lull in the belly from all the eating.

    Unfortunately they spray them around here these days……so you can never know if it is safe to pick or not. :(