Sugar Pie

comments: 49















We've been going out so much (to these tulip fields on Wednesday, and yesterday it was a wilting 88 degrees, and tonight it's a block party, and tomorrow it's dinner at our friends') that I never did make the dinner I've been meaning to make (not that I know what it is), but I did, at least, make a pie yesterday. Rhubarb (and blackberry), from this recipe. Strange recipe, really, and it doesn't seem like it will work, but then it does. The rhubarb and blackberries could not have been more tart. And this thing is so crazy sugary — and eggy, which I love — that it actually balances. But it's not like the typical creamy custard you'd expect (or like the one in the sour cream apple pie, I guess is what I'm thinking of). It's more like . . . goo. It's strangely good, though, and it was good for breakfast, too. My pie dish is cast iron, a gift from my sister but I think it's this one, and honestly, I don't think I'll ever use another pie plate. Because it actually browns the bottom of the crust. And it's big and deep. Good pie, good dish. Good days.

I've had a lot of irons in the fire lately, and things are finally starting to come together. New logo, new branding and packaging stuff, new web site, new blog design, new animal patterns, new kits, new fabrics, new yarns, new work routines as I shift more and more production out of the house and down the street to Spooltown. Just a lot of new. New and nervewracking. I'm thrilled with all of it, but still, it's new. I'm still expecting that we'll launch all of this at the end of this month, but now it's suddenly this month. And then once it's all launched and out there in the world, my dream is to take the summer off and go to the river and the pool every day with my girl.

Something's missing from our back yard! Still getting used to it, but oh, what an amazing thing it is to sit on your own back porch in your nightgown with pie and watch the stars come out, stars I've never seen before from this place. I made wishes for my baby girl and my love and family and friends and animals and watched the sky go from blue to ultraviolet to night. I think I'll do it again tonight, too.


Carabeth says: May 02, 2014 at 09:41 AM

Oh! I never even knew such a thing as a cast iron pie dish existed, and now it's the very next thing I must own! I love cast iron!

Yesterday we began making plans for a visit to my mom, in southern Oregon, but we all agree that this time we should begin the trip in Portland... once again, I am so happy to feel inspired, and even awestruck, by all you share about your community and environs. Thank you! I am excited for all these hot irons you are managing! Your muses and successes are a treat for us, too. And as much goodness as you are sharing in this post, I think Mimi gazing at her toes is my favorite... it speaks to me. Even amidst great beauty and activity, sometimes the simple pleasures are best.

I'm with Carabeth...can one have too many cast iron pieces though? I don't think I'm there yet, if so! :)

Bu-bye tree, hello stars!

Beautiful post, Alicia. I am looking forward to all of your new things!

Ooo can't wait to see all the new stuff!

Tulips and stars and yellow galoshes. Take the summer off. All the new will be waiting for you when you get back.

Oh good! so excited for all the new patterns and kits and website, but I am not ready. My life is so busy with my kids end of the year stuff, that I was selfishly hoping you weren't quite ready to release for at least a few more weeks. I know that as soon as they are here I will want to take a few days and just enjoy some downtime.
I find such refreshment in your sweet little projects. They soothe my soul and give me a little of the girl time that I miss as a mom of three boys. Thank you. :)

Ahh, lovely! I love your plans to take the whole summer off. Go for it! I myself am hoping to take a couple of weeks off this summer, as I think that's all I can swing. I'm working up to a whole month eventually! Anyways, good luck with the launch of all of the new stuff. I greatly look forward to it!

JoEllen says: May 02, 2014 at 10:50 AM

Your backyard looks so spacious now! And an added bonus of no leaves to pick up. Our big maple tree in the front yard is so nice but after raking up intervals of whirlygigs, flowers, branches and then leaves, I'm ready to cut it down! I was wondering about your pie too -- it looked good but a lot of liquid to get absorbed -- but the final result looks delicious. And as always, Amelia looks so sweet and adventurous and adorable! Her little outfits are so cute -- you are both doing a great job of parenting!

I *love* your backyard! Do your outdoor chair cushions stay out all the time? I have always wanted comfortable outdoor furniture but thought I couldn't because it rains here so much. Would love to think that might be an option!

Love the backyard without the tree. I bet you do get to look up at the stars now! Love the galoshes!! Enjoy your summer!!

Hello Alicia! Ohhh.. I wanted to go to the tulip fields but we're booked up too and I know I'm going to miss the bloom. Wah. I also loved the shot of Mimi watching her feet wiggle below.. very cute. We went on a bus tour yesterday to Beacon Rock State Park - if you haven't been, you should go. You get to walk down a ramp to a dock that is right under the massive rock. We're doing Mt. Hood tomorrow on another bus tour, this time with Friends of Multnomah Falls. Fun! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

I adore your backyard! i do have a question and I'm not sure if you will see my post.... the climbing ivy type plant on your back porch area, what is it?? i am looking for a good climber that needs minimal care and more shade than sun. :)


Jenn in Missoula.

So exciting about your new business stuff! I can't wait to see it all. I feel like I already commented about this, but in case I haven't: I have a book out from the library called Virginia Woolf's Garden: The story of the garden at Monk's House, and it is the loveliest thing, the garden and the sweet house and the idea of being a caretaker in residence for the National Trust, keeping up the home and garden. It made me think of you. Check it out if you have the inclination.

I keep thinking "Can Mimi get any cuter?" and she goes off and does. Melt your heart. Have fun watching those stars! :)

I love the wooden shoe tulip fest, we went too early this year and it was windy and cold, this week would have been a good week to go! I'm so grateful that its warm here in Portland, but I agree the 88 yesterday was a bit too warm!
Can't wait to see the new stuff in the shop, I'm just finishing up my first bunny and think she is so cute!

She is the cutest bloom!
I wish we had great pics of our daughters from 39 yrs ago..I am making up for lost time with my grandsosn..

Hmm LOVE to bake and cook.. I have my mom's cast iron skillet but not a pie pan..I imgine the crsut browns everywhere..sublimely!

Lovely pictures!

I've been a reader of your blog now for many years and I always love to see the beautiful places you visit. Last year we moved from Washington (above Seattle) to the PDX area, and I am so especially thrilled when I see you post about a place we've not yet discovered in this new area we are calling home.
So thank you so much for sharing your adventures, and inspiring me to take my little family on more of our own. Tomorrow we're off to the coast! Have a lovely weekend! Can't wait for the new softy patterns!

I think I need a pie pan like that. Looking forward to seeing all your new business stuff. The summer plan sounds perfect. Have a good weekend.

beautiful! the backyard AND pie! how wonderful to have the "new" things to look forward to...and I'm looking forward to them too!

Jordan in Seattle says: May 02, 2014 at 05:15 PM

Holy cow. There's a couple of those pictures Amelia looks like such a "big kid"! I love watching her change as much as my own bebes. Thank you so much for sharing her with us.

You have been so busy! I love the pictures of Amelia...she is just SO darling.

Oh, I can't wait to see all of your new lovelies............I am just about to finish your cross stitch kit (the one with the letters at the bottom), so I hope there's a newbie to get my teeth into!!!!

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at