I am not bound for any public place, but for ground of my own where I have planted vines and orchard trees, and in the heat of the day climbed up into the healing shadow of the woods. Better than any argument is to rise at dawn and pick dew-wet red berries in a cup. ~Wendell Berry
Sunday morning sweetness.
Just use a regular bread recipe, but after the first rise,
roll it out to a rectangular shape no wider than your loaf pan.
Cover with sugar and cinnamon, roll up and place in loaf pans,
let rise again, and bake at 350 until brown.
Makes great toast and french toast all week long.
Not too sweet. Just right : )
Another one of those magic moments!
The same day I harvested the herbs, I received
a package in the mail from Sasha.
In it, amongst so many other goodies (to be seen in future posts)
was this very cool hanging herb dryer.
How was that for timing?
Check it out! Isn't it just the neatest thing?
I was getting ready to use the paper bag method, which wouldn't have worked very well with herbs this size.
Thank you Sasha! I simply love it. So easy to use and now I get to watch them dry and admire them all along the process. I have a lined container underneath for any leaves that fall. This should make for an interesting tea mix don't you think?
The coriander is hanging in another part of this room and it is beautiful too.
Guess what my favorite room in the house is right about now?
What a beautiful night for a football game!
I am used to sitting in the cold, snow or rain.
I have no clue where Rikki and Rylee were in the stands
or on the field. But the band did well, especially for it's
Football players on the sideline with the band behind in the stands.
Marching band heading out to the field for half time show.
On the field
How am I supposed to find my daughters with all these sax players?
Did I say it was a beautiful night for a football game?
and their aroma was so uplifting I can't wait to get back to working with them again!
Coriander seeds have a health-supporting reputation that is high on the list of the healing spices. In parts of Europe, coriander has traditionally been referred to as an "anti-diabetic" plant. In parts of India, it has traditionally been used for its anti-inflammatory properties. In the United States, coriander has recently been studied for its cholesterol-lowering effects.
These are ways I am going to try using coriander seeds:
In a saucepan over low heat, combine vanilla soymilk, honey, coriander and cinnamon for a delicious beverage.
Healthy sauté spinach, fresh garlic and coriander seeds, mix in garbanzo beans, and season with ginger and cumin.
Add coriander seeds to soups and broths.
Use coriander seeds in the poaching liquid when preparing fish.
Adding ground coriander to pancake and waffle mixes will give them a Middle Eastern flavor.
Put coriander seeds in a pepper mill and keep on the dinner table so that you and your family can use them at any time.
First I am going to use some more of these fresh leaves to make more Sassy Water.
Then I am going to add some of the freshly torn leaves to vanilla ice cream.
The rest is going to be dried and used for herbal tea.
A few of the health benifits of mint include:
The antifungal properties associated with mint help in curing asthma and other allergic condition.
When included in the diet on a regular basis, mint reduces the growth of bacteria and fungus in the body.
Mint is a strong diuretic and therefore, helps in eliminating toxins from the body.
Drinking herbal mint tea reduces irritated bowel syndromes and cleanses the stomach.
It will be fun to finally try these out. They were a thoughtful gift from my daughter Sasha.
Ahhhhhh. Lovely Lavender!
This gorgeous plant will be dried, poured into little satchels
and tucked into our pillows.
I found this photo on the internet.
Hope mine look as good.
Thyme has been used for various purposes throughout the centuries. In medieval times, thyme was regarded as a plant that imparted courage and vigor. The ancient Romans considered it a remedy for melancholy. Thyme, along with roses, was often added to homes in the ancient past to provide a sweet-smelling aroma. The ancient Greeks used thyme for incense while the Romans were known to add thyme to cheese and alcoholic beverages.
This thyme will be dried and used for pizza seasoning, cream cheese dip, soups, and salad dressings.
Of course no respectable Thanksgiving dinner would be seen without it.
This ground-hugging plant has been a delight to watch grow.
I almost hated to harvest it.
Oregano has been shown to have over 42 times the antioxidant activity as apples, 30 times higher than potatoes, and 12 times more than oranges. As a matter of fact, ounce for ounce, oregano is thought to be one of the most antioxidant dense of all foods.
On that note: Be sure to plant (and use) lots of oregano!
Oregano's flavour is bold and gutsy; it wants to be noticed. The herb is a natural with garlic; in fact, it's hard to find a recipe that includes oregano but not garlic.
My favorite use is in greek salads; oregano is a wonderful addition!
Spicey Globe Basil
We harvested all of our Genovese Basil much earlier this summer
and have plenty of pesto in the freezer.
This small leaved basil is new to us this year.
Isn't it beautiful?
Too bad your monitor isn't scratch and sniff.
I think I will try some of the fresh leaves in with my stewed tomatoes during canning.
I am also hoping the dried leaves might be a little more flavorful than the dried Genovese Basil.
As far as the health benifit go:
An array of flavonoids exist in basil, which help to protect cells and chromosomes from damage. Studies have shown that two of these flavonoids in particular, orientin and vicenin, are useful in protecting cell structures and chromosomes from damage by radiation and oxygen.
Eugenol, which is found in essential oil of basil, provides an anti-inflammatory effect, by blocking an enzyme called cyclooxygenase. Aspirin and Ibuprofen work by blocking this same enzyme. So, basil can have healing benefits, and provide relief from the symptoms of inflammatory problems, like rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel conditions.
Such a delicate looking herb, but so easy to grow.
Another one I hated to harvest, but can't wait to start using.
Marjoram is considered to be one of the rare herbs whose flavor intensifies when dried
Once dried, I will use some of the leaves for tea and store some for seasoning.
I have listed a few of the health benifits of marjoram below:
Marjoram has a calming effect on human system and is known to soothe worried nerves, reduce anxiety and calm stress. Marjoram contains flavonoids, a property that is known for its tranquilizing effect. The herb is known to assuage insomnia, headaches and migraines too.
Marjoram is excellent cure for digestion related disorders and is known to cure gastrointestinal disorders like reduced appetite, nausea, flatulence and indigestion. What is more, it is known to boost digestion and soothe colic too.
The flavonoids in marjoram are supposedly good for cardiac health and are known to boost healthy arteries and heart by enhancing blood circulation and preventing cholesterol buildup.
And last but not least
I love just saying the name!
I also could never help but pull off a leaf whenever I walked by this plant.
Did I say I love LEMON?!
This is what I plan to make with the fresh leaves:
Raspberry-Lemon Verbena Butter
From The Herb Companion
1/2 pound unsalted butter
1 tablespoon sugar, or to taste
4 ounces fresh or frozen raspberries (not in syrup)
1 small handful young, tender lemon verbena leaves. Thaw the raspberries if frozen, and pour off any excess liquid. With all ingredients at room temperature, blend butter, sugar, and raspberries until smooth (about 3 minutes). Strip out any large veins in the lemon verbena leaves, then add the leaves (chopped if you're mixing by hand) and blend until the texture is pleasing.
If I have enough leaves left I want to try making Lemon Verbena Jelly.
I just have to share with you what an absolutely beautiful, awesome, amazing late summer day it was today in northeast Nebraska!
I can't remember a day I was more in love with, and more in the moment with.
There are no photos. I don't know how I would begin to capture it.
Maybe the photo on my blog title would come closest.
I am just at peace in the perfection of it all. I will hold on to this day in my heart forever.
a sudden, alarming amazement or dread that results in utter confusion; dismay.
This is what I feel every time I go to pick up my ringing phone and realize it is my realtor's office calling to schedule a showing of my home.
I don't care how many times I have been through it in the past years, it never changes.
No matter how hard I try, I cannot "live" in my home and have it in show-shape at the same time.
Especially when the house has been on the market for 5 months and only shown twice.
The nonchalant voice on the other end of the line at 3:00 p.m. on a Thursday afternoon asking if they might show my house at 4:30 p.m. just sends my mind reeling.
Let's see, how can I mow the lawns, find somewhere to store 60-70 recently filled mason jars and about that many cucumbers and tomatoes covering counters and tables? How can I clean a 5 bedroom, 2 bath, three level house and two garages, with two tired kids, at the end of the week?
How can I do that in the 30 minutes I will have to sneak away from work early to do?
For the first time in my home-sellers life I say "no".
Okay, so maybe it came out more like a meek little "no?"
She answered "No? " (uncomfortable silence) "Well when can they show it? 5:30?"
Me again - "no(?)" "I need at least a days notice"
Her - "Oh, your file didn't say that, I will mark that down".
10 minutes later, she calls back and asks if they can show it tomorrow morning at 10:00 a.m.
I say I can work with that (since I have Friday off and nothing better to do than make my house look like no one lives in it.)
My kids hate me, but every inch of the house and yard was cleaned and ready for the 15 minute walk-through at 10:00 a.m.
When I came back to my sparkling clean home, which I keep reminding myself is a good thing, and find a realtor's card on my table, I take a deep breath and let it out. Now if I could just keep it this way.
Nonetheless, we did what we could, and we did a good job.
Somehow I can't help but think that this is payback for all the houses I had the realtor show me when I was looking for a home. And for all those working moms I made stay up until midnight scrubbing floors, just so I could walk through it the next day, when I knew it wasn't what I was really looking for to begin with.
I am here to tell you, friends, that is just mean, and karma is real.
Buying and selling homes, working with realtor's and lenders, cleaning, cleaning, cleaning,
and always (and I do mean always) trying to detach from your home is not pleasant!
My suggestion, choose your home and your realtor wisely, take your time, negotiate, and most importantly, make it yours, for better or worse.
I am in trouble. Here it is the middle of August and I am already carrying around my winter fat. (don't even look for a photo) I have been trying to explain it away for the last month. What happened? I finally realized it is the 10 hour days I have been working; which shouldn't even be termed work as it involves little to no physical activity. What my type of work does, however, it is tire me out mentally. It also gives me a good excuse for not doing some sort of exercise daily.
What a relief it was to finally discover that my problem was not; a. age related (it's too easy to blame age for everything) b. diet related (nothing really changed there) c. stress related (if fat were caused by stress, I would be a blimp) d. all of the above
Thankfully I am back on my 8 hr schedule this week. I have already started the 1.8 mile trek around Skyview Lake each night, while leaving the ripe salsa tomatoes to sit for another day.
The other morning, as I was trying to get the girls and their sleepover friends
rounded up and into the car, I heard quite a squawking down at the barn.
How I heard this from inside the house, with four girls hurrying around and talking,
is just one of those "mom" things.
I quickly looked outside in time to see the bantam roosters running as fast as their legs
would carry them back to the safety of their pen flapping their wings and squawking the whole way.
Tess, who had been lying in the yard, noticed also. She jumped up and looked
at them inquisitively as to what the heck they were so upset about.
I told the girls to finish getting ready and get to the car
and I walked down to see what the problem was.
By then the roosters had settled down some,
but were still having loud conversations amongst themselves.
I immediately saw that there were only two white Cochin's,
whereas there should have been three.
I looked all over.
I walked around the barn with the dogs, hoping they would catch a scent
if there had been a predator recently nearby.
I searched for feathers, because no chicken can get abducted without loosing a few.
Not a sign of a struggle, no scent in the air or on the ground, no white Cochin rooster.
This isn't particularly new to me.
As I walked back to the house, these are the things that went through my mind;
Predator problems are bound to happen sooner or later, but why now, in broad daylight?
If the roosters are picked off one by one, I won't have to worry about what to do with them this winter.
I can't tell the girls. Too much drama to deal with in the car.
# 2. (above) was a stupid thought! Once they finish with the roosters, they will come for the hens.
My walk became heavy as I carried my new burden up the hill to the car where the girls awaited.
I tried hard not to share my problem as I backed the car up. But as I was looking in my rear-view
mirror, it occurred to me that I just might know where that rooster disappeared to.
There is a "thingamajig" in front of the barn, where the roosters like to gather and hang out under. It provides shade and some protection.
I wondered if by chance the rooster had flown inside of it and couldn't get out.
It all started to make more sense. I was sure if he did fly in, he would have made
quite a ruckus and the acoustics would definitely be enough to scare the heck out
of the rest of the gang.
I pulled the car up next to it and told Rylee to see if she could see inside.
She didn't even need to look, as he let us know he was there with a very loud crow.
I got underneath to see if I could see him and what his predicament was.
Sure enough, there he was, but there was no predicament.
I think he just liked how he sounded in there.
He could easily get out whenever he wanted to, but chose not to.
Boys will be boys.