Happy Hobbit Day!

I didn’t mean to take the summer off of blogging, but it appears that’s what happened. The truth is, as usual, life has been busy. Between working part-time from home (which has been the norm for a few years), caring for my toddler full-time (which is also the norm), and preparing for another little one, there’s been a lot to do.

But there’s nothing like a good holiday to slow everything down, at least for a moment. And tomorrow is one of my favorites: Hobbit Day! Bilbo and Frodo’s birthday! It’s a good excuse for warm, hearty food–even though it still feels more like summer here.

While I have quite a few favorite British, Scottish, Welsh, and Irish recipes, a Hobbit Day go-to is scones. Sweet or savory doesn’t matter. Paired with dinner or a cup of tea, they feel like quintessential Hobbit food to me.

So, in honor of the holiday, here’s my go-to scone recipe. Honestly, I’m not sure where it’s originally from. It might be from one of my mom’s old cookbooks or a magazine. Or maybe I found it when I first moved out. I’ve been on my own long enough that it’s hard to remember now. But regardless, I hope you enjoy!

Chocolate Chip Scones

  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips (or however many your heart tells you to add)

Preheat oven to 350F.

Combine the flour, sugars, baking powder, and baking soda. Use a fork or pastry cutter to cut in butter into the flour mixture until it looks like a coarse meal.

In a small bowl, beat the egg lightly before adding the milk and vanilla to it. Pour the mixture into the flour mixture. Stir until the flour mixture is moistened.

Add the chocolate chips. Use your heart to decide the right amount.

If you don’t have a scone pan, turn the dough out on a lightly floured surface and cut into triangles. Place the triangles on wax paper on a baking sheet.

Bake for 15 minutes.

Do you celebrate Hobbit Day? What are some of your favorite UK recipes?

Nine Years Later…

It’s been just shy of 9 years since the last time I watched astronauts launch into space. I stood outside my front door, watched the Space Shuttle Atlantis go up one last time, and whispered a prayer for their safe return. When they came home, the twin sonic booms signaled the end of an era.

It’s been 7 years since I saw Atlantis up close for the first time at the Kennedy Space Center. I held my baby daughter close and told her that I used to watch it fly to space. That I used to dream of being its pilot. She must have remembered because not too long after, she began waiting anxiously for rocket launches too.

Today, I count down the minutes along with the astronauts waiting in the Crew Dragon. I watch the sky, hoping that it stays clear enough for launch and for us to see it from the same spot where I watched Atlantis almost 9 years ago. I know my daughter will be too young to remember today (or whichever day the Crew Dragon finally launches, weather permitting), but I love that I get to share this historic moment with her.

Our homemade rocket has been helping us prepare for the historic launch. I’m not as good at paper crafts as I thought I was, but my daughter likes it.

The King Has Got a Crown

Last week, I wrote about Tolkien Reading Day and the hope it brings in the midst of this pandemic. Since then, I haven’t been able to stop thinking about that beautiful excerpt from The Two Towers (or The Return of the King film).

Sam and Frodo are on their long and dangerous trek to Mordor. On the way, they come to a defaced statue: a King of Gondor whose head has been removed. The head lay in the grass nearby.

As they pass it, sunlight illuminates the head, revealing a beautiful crown of flowers on the King’s brow. And in that moment, hope cuts through the thick clouds of fear.

I think the reason this moment resonates with me so much is because I feel that hope. The older I get, the more I feel it, regardless of the situation. There’s so much that I can’t control, but that’s okay. I don’t have to. There is a King who still wears his crown, and my hope is in him.

While drawing isn’t my forte, all of this inspired me to give it a shot. So here it is.

SB Roberts 2020