Apricots and Sunshine Days

Macia and I picked apricots.

Friday afternoon, Daddy and Macia and I donned our sunshine clothes and puttered in the back yard. Daddy fiddled with the pool and the filter. Macia played with old rakes, the water table, and apricots and pits strewn on the ground, while I pinched and picked and plucked Momma’s apricots off her tree. The surprisingly prolific tree she never expected to fruit.

Plunk. Plunk. Into my pink bucket. Soon, it was full. And the only other ripe apricots on the tree were too high for me to reach, even with a ladder. Not all the apricots I picked were equally ripe–the problem of only being there for a shot visit. But I knew that with enough sugar, anything is possible.

I knew the fruit needed to be picked before the birds got to it. Before it fell off the tree for the ants. But still, I didn’t get to canning them right away. Part of me couldn’t decide what recipe to use–apricots are not my favorite fruit; I didn’t want to do just apricot jam. Apricot-pineapple floated around in my head for a while, but I didn’t want to use pectin and I didn’t have any pineapple.

Also, the only time I’ve made apricot-pineapple jam was with Momma. In her kitchen, from a recipe she came up with in her head. That was years ago…

I wasn’t prepared. I wasn’t prepared for the grief that would resurface on this visit, the things I had yet to mourn. It was overwhelming and unexpected and I didn’t know how to handle it.

And so I continued to let the apricots sit in that pink bucket.

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