Monday, July 30, 2012

Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)

yarrow (white flower & pink in lower right corner), lavender (purple), heliopsis (yellow flower), 
and there is even a bit of dill mixed in. 
This patch has gone a bit wild...and I'm fine with that...

Yarrow has been growing in my garden for years.   
I think it may even be part of the original divisions 
my parents gave me 
my first summer in my home.

It can be invasive 
but I love how this plant seems to fill in the gaps between plants, 
softening the edges a bit.

Did you know?
I’ve recently learned that the yarrow leaves 
have healing properties that stop bleeding 

Saturday, July 28, 2012


 Since going vegan my life got a lot simpler.   
I often am sautéing a mélange of vegetables for lunch or dinner, 
typically whatever combination I had in the fridge.   
Any and all vegetables make it in the pan.

As I was assessing what I had for lunch 
I decided I should take simple a few steps further.   
Why not just 1 or 2 vegetables
instead of 5 or 6?   
As I was at the farmers market this morning 
picking up this beautiful medallion onion 
and found a zucchini just short of too big,in my garden,
 there was no better time to taste vegetables as fresh as they get.

The onion was from Iron Creek Farm
usually my first stop at the Oak Park Market.   
I wish I brought my camera.   
The “sea” of white onions was truly beautiful.

This is my complete lunch.   
I did add garbanzo beans 
(more for rounding out the nutrients than flavor) and basil.  
 It was good, uncomplicated and tasted like summer. 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Chai - the real thing

Most mornings I have Green Mint Tea from Rishi.   
But the tins have been stacking up 
and what to do with all of those tins?
 Finally I checked out the Rishi website to reorder 
the tea alone and spent at least a week 
looking at all of the teas they make.   
If you are tea drinker you know how exciting 
a new tea can be, but also how disappointing 
it is to buy a not inexpensive tea 
and well, not like it.    
Every time you pass the tea you feel guilty about it 
and refuse to throw it out.   
Well, let me tell you …
the Rishi site is exciting because you can buy ounce bags 
which are perfect.   
I went a little crazy and tried a lot of different teas.    

This is a Masala Chai that I made with vanilla soy milk.
This is some serious chai folks.   
The spices are powerful, decadent and 
stay on your palate long after you’ve finished.   
Let’s just say I won’t be walking by this tea with any guilt.   
It does make want to go out for Indian food however….
and the soy chai I loved at coffee houses and restaurants?
Well they now taste like warm milk and a touch of cinnamon, 
a pale imitation.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Coneflowers - a good year

 Coneflower & Ageretum

This is a  great year for coneflowers.
I’ve had them popping up everywhere.
Not sure if was the mellow winter and spring
Or the fact I let so many go to seed 
for the birds last year.   
Either way, I’m a winner!

Friday, July 20, 2012


Steps to the Sea, Croatia

I hope we all find a soothing escape this weekend... and just jump in.

Found on Pinterest.

That was found on this site.  
Check it out for fantastic photography.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Butterflies in the Garden

 Butterfly season is in full swing and there are some 
I've found the garden this week. 
May-be they are in yours too!  
I’ve done my best to identify them 
but the photos are definitely not mine.    
They are quite a bit less jittery this year 
but not calm enough for my camera.   

Do click on their names to link you to the sites I found them.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Calendula Petals

 I’ve been growing calendula for the last few years. 
They're pretty, profuse and self-seed.   
What more could you ask for?   

Well, they offer a lot more that that. 
 Calendula petals are edible, a food colorant 
and used in many lotions, salves and balms. 

 The petals contain an oil that acts as a disinfectant
and is soothing to bites, scratches and even bruises.  
 This summer, while I dead head the spent blooms,
I’m gathering the petals 
so I can try a few of these projects.   
In fact, I’m anxious to get some made as 
I have many garden injuries that could benefit 
from a salve right about now.

Check out one of my favorite web stores   
They also have a blog with several recipes I intend to try.   
And if you want to try one or two of the recipes yourself 
but are sad to say aren’t growing calendula?  
 Well, Mountain Rose Herbs will sell you calendula petals! 

 And no, this is not a paid advertisement :-)

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Venetian Glass Beads - a bracelet

I have had these Venetian glass beads (rectangular) 
for several years and couldn’t decide what to do with them.   
Finally decided on a bracelet.   
This was so quick and easy, 
once I decided what beads to include that is.  
 Have a feeling more bracelets are in my future…

Friday, July 13, 2012

Pink Blossom Bird Perch

 This picture has such a dream like quality.

Can you imagine perching on this tree?

I don't think I'd ever leave!

Found this on Pinterest.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Creamy Squash Soup

creamy squash soup....I think a broccoli sprout found its way into the cilantro for this photo...

Squash season is upon us 
and I’ve found a fantastic soup 
in this month’s Whole Living magazine. 
 I’ve modified a few things, 
such as using vegetable stock instead of olive oil to sauté. 
Vegetable stock instead of water for the broth.    
 I also added corn.   
Really love this recipe 
and it will be going in my permanent file of recipes.

Basic ingredients are yellow summer squash, 
onion, garlic, corn, cilantro, and coriander.  
The recipe does call for lime, 
but as much as I like lime I'd leave it out.  
May-be have a margarita instead!