Monday, May 30, 2011

garden photos

Saturday, May 28, 2011

wild edibles: plantain and dandelion greens

jane from the wonderful blog hard work homestead has been featuring wild edibles with impressive nutritional profiles like violets, prolific plantain and dandelion greens.

turns out ribwort plantain is the weed that grows all over my yard! the leaves are easily identified by their ribbed veins; the flowers are also fairly simple to spot.

plantain's anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties make it the ideal healer internally and externally. topically, the leaves "will stop excessive bleeding and heal insect bites, stings, rashes, inflammation, infections, boils, diaper rash, ulcers and sores of all kinds." (source)

some call plantain leaves fairy band-aids!

in this video, tam shows how she used plantain paste to heal her 2nd-degree burn.

rick posted this link which shows how to make a soothing ointment for skin irritations like bug bites and rashes. with mosquito season around the corner, i know this stuff will come in handy!

following another tutorial on plantain oil, i left the jar in the sun for a day. i'll leave it covered on my counter for a few more weeks then strain the mixture into small jars.

internally, plantain may be used to remedy "diarrhea, bowel and kidney problems, stomach ulcers, excessive menstruation, urinary tract infections, bladder infections and even bedwetting. It is also used for treating chronic bronchitis, coughs, and other upper respiratory problems. Germany's Commission E, equivalent to the American Food and Drug Administration, has approved the remedy for use in treating these conditions. Drink three to four cups of plantain tea daily for the best results." (source)

for tea, plantain leaves, flowers, roots and seeds can be used fresh or dried. most of my harvested plantain and dandelion greens dried in the dehydrator in about 24 hours. drying them in a brown bag or the sun may also work.

plantain tea has a pleasant mild flavor - no sweetener needed.

plantain leaves, like dandelion greens, can also be cooked! this french lentil bean, brown rice and butternut squash dish contained plantain and dandelion as well as garden kale and radish greens.

so far the home garden is growing beautifully. we're harvesting lots of lettuce, kale, and a few sugar snap peas and strawberries each day. i'll post photos soon!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

strawberry spinach salad

1 bunch spinach
1 pint strawberries, sliced
1/2 C pecans, raw or toasted
1/4 C olive oil
2 T apple cider vinegar
2 T red wine vinegar
1 1/2 T agave nectar
1 T poppy seeds
1 T sesame seeds
1/8 tsp paprika

combine spinach, strawberries and pecans in a salad bowl. mix remaining ingredients and pour over salad before serving.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

community garden

john and i are happy to have two 4 by 16 foot plots again at our community's garden just a quarter mile from our home. the beds have been framed and are filled with a mushroom compost mix. so far things are growing nicely for everyone.

we designated bed two to vining fruits and rigged up a trellis for the plants to climb. in bed one we built a branch teepee for our pole beans to vine.

to visit posts of our plots last year click here and scroll down.

Friday, May 20, 2011

prom pictures

'tis the season for proms, so i thought i'd scan and share some photos. did you attend your school proms? did you also find them to be silly and overrated?

 junior prom 1998

 senior prom 1999

nothing magical happened at my proms. as i recall, the date above spent most of the time at the buffet instead of dancing with me. we also got lost on the way home. 

however, i did love my dresses, though i stressed for months finding them. perhaps this is the root of my aversion to weddings. too much work for one night, imo.

funny fact: we double-dated with john and his girlfriend at the time, so i did kind of go to my senior prom with johnny boy.=)

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

the pansy fairy and vanilla beans

sweet malle from touching the sky is easier for birds sent me this precious postcard.

it's a print from the adorable flower fairy alphabet by cicily mary baker. there are flowers (and faeries) just like these in my garden.=)

did you know that pansies are edible? i love to brighten my meals with the beautiful blooms. the breakfast smoothie above consists of vanilla bean, banana, strawberry, cucumber, carrot, garden spinach and chia seeds. the first three ingredients make it taste like dessert!

vanilla has always been a favorite of mine - vanilla ice cream, scented candles and even perfumes. through amazon i discovered an unbeatable deal on vanilla beans - 54 beans for $22.29 (free shipping)! this averages to less than 42 cents a bean, when they're going for 4 dollars a bean at the local health food store.

the package arrived just a few days after ordering and the beans are of good quality. i've been enjoying them in my smoothies and with nettles, chamomile and mint tea. to preserve the beans i've vacuum-sealed bags of about 12 each with my new mini food saver. more on that later.

wishing you all lovely days full of simple pleasures!=)

Monday, May 16, 2011

ice cream cake ebook giveaway winner

congratulations, sasha of blyssful health! email me for your copy of heathy's ultimate ice cream cake ebook.

thanks to all who participated!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. - Anaïs Nin

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Sunday, May 8, 2011

thank you, mom

for letting me come down to spend time with you when the other two went to sleep.

for always nursing me back to health and letting me take sick days (even when i wasn't really=).

for running around to help me find the perfect dress, shoes, jeans, backpack, sneakers, bathing suit, etc. (you deserve to be sainted for that!=)

for listening to me cry about everything and anything, and never making me feel silly about it.

for trusting me to make my own decisions and supporting me every step of the way.

for teaching me what it means to be kind and patient and how to love unconditionally.

i've been blessed with an angel for a mother.

happy mother's day to my beautiful mom and all mothers out there!


Thursday, May 5, 2011

my thoughts in quotes


"Our society is run by insane people for insane objectives. I think we're being run by maniacs for maniacal ends and I think I'm liable to be put away as insane for expressing that. That's what's insane about it." - John Lennon


"When you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing - When you see that money is flowing to those who deal, not in goods, but in favors - When you see that men get richer by graft and by pull than by work, and your laws don’t protect you against them, but protect them against you - When you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice - You may know that your society is doomed." - Ayn Rand, "Atlas Shrugged", 1957


"There is no Left or Right -- there is only freedom or tyranny.  Everything else is an illusion, an obfuscation to keep you confused and silent as the world burns around you." - Philip Brennan 


"An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind." - Gandhi


"Let us not look back in anger, nor forward in fear, but around us in awareness." - James Thurber   


"While there is a chance of the world getting through its troubles, I hold that a reasonable man has to behave as though he were sure of it. If at the end your cheerfulness is not justified, at any rate you will have been cheerful." - H.G. Wells


Sunday, May 1, 2011

ice cream cake ebook giveaway

thank you for the sweet comments on my strawberry banana ice cream cake post. i wish i could share a slice with all of you! what i can do is guide you in making your own and offer a chance to win the ultimate raw ice cream ebook by heather pace.

the bottom layer of this cake is simply frozen banana pureed in the food processor until light and fluffy. after smoothing the banana into a 7-inch springform pan and placing it in the freezer, frozen strawberries with a few squirts agave nectar and lemon juice went in to the food processor next (i didn't bother to rinse it.)

while one layer was freezing, the next was being made. (i was also able to clean up a little and get some laundry done=). dehydrated buckwheat was mixed with maple syrup, cacao nibs and powder for chocolate buckwheat crunchies, and fresh coconut, cashews, macs, coconut butter, vanillla and agave was blended for the vanilla layer. the recipe needs tweaking before posting, though i will share this decadent peanut butter sauce that is the perfect compliment to this cake.

peanut butter sauce

3 T peanut butter (unsweetened and unsalted)
1 T melted coconut oil
1 T water
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 T maple syrup (or liquid sweetener of choice, to taste)
pinch of salt

blend all ingredients until smooth.

kelli's notes: if you use sweetened/salted peanut butter, it may be best to omit the last two ingredients. it's so good, you might want to double or triple the recipe.=)

fun swirly top

last year around this time i was an ice cream cake-making machine; once i started, i couldn't stop!

heathy introduced the raw food world to these sensational creations with an ebook and a challenge to create our own. compared to other desserts, i find raw ice cream cakes to be fairly easy to make and insanely fun to create. another plus is they're a bit less expensive because fruit and buckwheat crunchies take the place of pricey nuts/dates often used in raw desserts. (if you grow or pick your own fruit, even better!) and who doesn't enjoy a slice of cool ice cream cake on a warm spring/summer day?!=)

entry #1: rawspberries and cream

entry #2: chocolate strawberries and banana

entry #3: café almond biscotti

final, 2nd place-winning entry: pearberry bliss

wouldn't you like to create a raw ice cream cake of your own?  

heathy's ultimate raw ice cream cake ebook is available for purchase here. enter for a chance to win a copy by leaving a comment below telling me what kind of ice cream cake you'd like to make. for one extra entry: blog, facebook or tweet about this giveaway.

the winner will be selected randomly and announced monday, may 16th, 2011. this giveaway is now closed.

happy cake-creating!
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