Tag Archives: Food

This is One Beautiful Cup of Tea

 

“Where flowers bloom

so does hope.”

                                                   ~ Lady Bird Johnson

 

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I may not have flowers blooming in my garden right now, but I’ve got them in my cup!  Thanks to a thoughtful friend who went on vacation and brought me back this lovely little gift from her layover in China.  What an absolute delight to have flowers ‘blooming’ in my tea!

 

It’s just so amazing to me that this…

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Could turn into this…

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Seriously now, how pretty is that?!   ❤

I love tea, and have a whole cupboard filled with all different flavors (peppermint or chai being my favorites), but I’ve never tried, nor even heard of flowering tea.  Apparently, flowering teas have many various health benefits too depending on what’s in them.  I didn’t really care for the flavor of this one though, so after a few sips I set it aside to enjoy for it’s visual beauty rather than its flavor.

We’re in the dead of winter here with spring a looong way off yet, so it sure was nice to have something else ‘blooming’ around here.  😀

 

Hope there’s something beautiful blooming where you are too…

 

 

 

✿~Peace & Love~✿

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Trick or Treat?

 

Treat please!

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We made these adorable little candy corn themed cupcakes the other day and I thought I’d share one with you.  Best to have only this virtual one though, because they’re made with everything that is totally unhealthy.  Although… I did use organic free range eggs.  😉

 

Have a safe and happy Halloween!

 

 

✿~Peace & Love~✿

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Sweet Love

 

Love so enticing, delicious and sweet

brings delight to the heart like a sugary treat.

© Julie Rehnelt 2014

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✿~Peace & Love~✿

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Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My….. Plants

Wow, that’s got to be just about the corniest music video ever!  Haha the 70’s!  I do love B.J. Thomas’ voice though.

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Sorry, it’s just that everything reminds me of a song.  😉

And the raindrops really do keep falling on my plants.  In fact, we’ve had some pretty strong storms here too, over the past several days.  I love me a good thunderstorm!  Three nights in a row I was awoken by some awesome thunder crashing.  ♥

Unfortunately though, the storms did do some damage in the area with flooding, fires caused by lightening, trees down from high winds, and many people are still without power.  My sis came back from her cabin only to find that power was out at her place.  She’s just a little way up the road from us and I’m so thankful we didn’t lose power or have any damage here.  I did have one bean plant casualty however, and our gorgeous peonies got decimated.  I’m really glad I got the chance to enjoy them before they did.  During one of the storms our street became a rushing river, literally.  It was scary and exciting at the same time.  Again, I’m just thankful we didn’t have any real damage or power outage.

As every good gardener does, I went out after one of the storms and checked on how my plants fared through the weather.  Aside from being completely drenched and having a few that were leaning over from the winds, I’m happy to report that things looked pretty good.

I think some of my mesclun is just about ready to harvest.  Finally!

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My peas are flowering!  ♥

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My zucchini is spreading out nicely.

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I’m really glad it didn’t get damaged from any of the storms because it’s the only one I planted this year.

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My carrots are doing alright.

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They had a rocky start though because something was nibbling them down at first, but they seem to be fine now and leafing out a little bit more.

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My jalapeno peppers are doing really well and have lots of pretty blossoms.

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Pretty blossoms that will hopefully become yummy peppers.  😀

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I was so excited to see that the trumpet vine I planted around the backside of the fence now has buds on it.

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I’ve never grown one of these before and I can’t wait to see it bloom!  I hope it attracts lots hummingbirds and butterflies!  ♥

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I bought my mom a new hydrangea because the one we planted for her last year didn’t survive.  This one is a little different of a variety so hopefully it fares better.  It sure is a pretty shade of blue.

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This isn’t actually in the ground yet and during one of the storms we looked out and saw it rolling around in its pot on the patio, being blown by the wind and the rain.  My daughter who was just itching to go outside during the storm (she is her mother’s daughter ;)) begged to go out and rescue it.  I’m glad she did, or it very well could have ended up another causality.  It’s getting a bit warm outside now to be planting, so I may just leave this in its pot until fall planting time.  But we’ll have to keep an eye on it during any storms so we don’t lose it.

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And lastly, with all the raining it’s been doing out there I haven’t kept up on keeping the weeds cleared very well.  And you know what…?  I happen to find some “weeds” to be completely delightful.  Clovers for one.  I absolutely love their little heart shaped triple leaves!  Just look at them, I swear they’re smiling…

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So cute!  I really can’t bear to yank them out.  I think I’ll just leave them there a while, maybe they’ll produce a four-leafed clover, I could use some good luck!  😉

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~Gardening is my therapy~

And… Exhale

After Christmas there is always this sense of a sort of exhale for me.  All the hustle and bustle is over and I can finally release the breath that I feel like I’ve been holding in through it all.  It’s really quite a relief actually, seeing as I usually rather enjoy breathing, in general.  😉

I’ve mentioned many times in previous posts how much I hate busyness and unfortunately sometimes even the fun kind wears on me.  The past few Christmases have been so different and also difficult for me.  I hope one day everything will be back to normal, but perhaps this is just how it’s going to be from now on.  Maybe once you experience the death of a close loved one and/or other multiple major life changes, the holidays never really go “back to normal” again.  Or maybe it just takes time.  I did have a nice Christmas though, for the most part, and I hope you all did too.

I’d have to say that the best thing about mine was having my punk nephew home from California.  I only get to see him every few years, so it was really nice to have him here for Christmas this year.  On the first day that I got to spend with him we all went out to see the movie The Hobbit.  I am a huge fan of Tolkien and I really enjoyed seeing a beloved story of mine brought to life on the big screen.  I also thought it was very well done and I look forward to the next installment.

The next day, my nephew and his girlfriend came over and we all made candy together.  My mom happened to snap this photo while we were working on making our Christmas mice.100_3816Maraschino cherries dipped in white chocolate = yummy little mice!

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Yeah, they may be all smiles in that photo there, but on Christmas Eve when he brought over a new game for all of us to play, things got a bit heated.  Taboo…DSCF0112aWe always play games after eating and opening gifts on Christmas Eve, and Taboo was tons of fun!  I had never played it before, but I think I was pretty good at it.  Well… except for the whole not being allowed to talk with my hands part of the rules.  That was a bit tricky.  Yes, I’m one those people who talks with my hands.  Hey, I’m often overly expressive, what can I say?!  😉

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Another thing I enjoyed this Christmas was the new recipe I tried out.  It’s called Christmas Crack and omyfreakinggosh is it ever delicious!  And addicting.  Hence its being called “crack.”  DSCN6265This will definitely be a regular treat that I will be making around the holidays from now on.

Edit note:  I would love to share this amazing recipe with you all, but I’m afraid you’ll have to find your own drug dealer for this one, as I’ve just recently been made aware that this particular recipe is in fact Top Secret and was only shared with me in the strictest of confidence.  Oops!  My sincere apologies to the dear friend who shared it with me as I didn’t realize that before I posted it here earlier.  There are many other variations of this recipe out there on the Internet free for the taking, none as delicious as this one mind you, but you’ll just have to make due.  I know, I’m such a tease.  😉

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Well, I don’t know about you, but between doing crack and devouring poor unsuspecting mice, I had waaaay too many goodies over the holidays.  Oof, time for a diet!

And speaking of needing to go on a diet, look at the picture I took of my cute, chubby little kitten.  DSCF0089aShe is usually a timid little thing whenever there’s company over, but she was celebrating like a pro with the rest of us on Christmas Eve.  She kinda has a thing for wrapping paper and she wasn’t giving this piece up for anything ~ not even for a nap.

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And look what we subjected my daughter’s poor dog, Teddy to…DSCF0024aHaha oh how he detests wearing his Santa hat, but he just looks too darn cute in it to not make him suffer in it, at least for a little while.  😉

Besides, we’re all subjected to a bit of suffering over the holidays.

And… exhale.

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Now it’s time to get busy contemplating all of those New Year’s resolutions…

Adventures in Gardening Part 35 ~ All Good Things Must Come to an End… But Not Yet!

First day of October and my tiny garden isn’t ready to call it quits just yet.  Soon, but not yet.

I still have my champ of a bell pepper hanging in there.  And it’s just about yellow enough to pick…~

It’s dipping down pretty chilly in the evenings though, so one night when the news was warning of frost and freezing temps, my sis came over and we covered it up with old sheets.  All cozy and tucked in for the night.  😉~

That same plant has a few other nice sized peppers growing on it too, but I doubt they’ll have the chance to turn yellow before the real cold weather comes.  So what, I’ll be more than happy to eat them green.  🙂

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While my sis was over she gave her mint plants a “haircut.”  They look a bit sad all buzzed off, but she dehydrated the leaves and sometime soon we are going to sit down and enjoy some peppermint tea together.  I love peppermint tea!~

I was going to give them a bit more time, but then decided to go ahead and pull up my onions.  They didn’t get very big growing in the pot I had them in, so next year I’ll have to come up with another idea for what to plant them in.  They smell really good though and I’m sure they’ll be flavorful.  My sis didn’t like me leaving the smallest of the bunch out of the photo, so while I was snapping she took it and put it into the shot.  She said it would feel left out.  Yeah, because we all know that onions have feelings too.  😉 ~

I planted the Trumpet Vine that my dear friends in Kentucky sent me earlier this summer.  I wanted to wait until the weather got a bit cooler.  I think it’s happy in the spot I planted it and I hope it grows well there.  Thanks again Allan & Patty! ♥~

I have noticed that the Pineapple Sage I planted is flowering now, and the blooms are a really pretty bright red!  This is the first time I’ve grown it, so I had no idea what it would produce.~

Ya know… I love fall so much, but I also love the green and growing things, so I’m going to try to get as much enjoyment out of them as I possibly can before it all comes to an end.  With the leaves at peak right now, it’ll be soon…

~Gardening is my therapy~

Adventures in Gardening Part 31 ~ That Thieving Squirrel: The Epic Battle Continues…

Well, my battle with that thieving squirrel continues.  He is still up to his evil diabolical schemes and clearly thinks my potting bench makes a nice dinner table.  It seems like every day when I go out to check on things, I find new and incriminating evidence of his evil deeds…Notice that plastic wrapper and little strip of paper laying nearby?  It’s from a fortune cookie.  Evidently he also enjoyed some Chinese take-out while sitting there chomping away on my cucumber!

I’m pretty sure he left this message just to stick it to me…Apparently, he sees my delicious garden vegetables as an “opportunity” to get a free meal, but I definitely don’t ever recall going and knocking on his door and inviting him over for dinner!  He’s just lucky I’ve had such a bountiful harvest of cucumbers and haven’t noticed much of an impact from his thievery, or he would notice the impact of my fiery wrath.

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But he’s also eating all my tomatoes.  Yes, all!  And unlike my bumper crop of cucumbers, my tomatoes have been struggling quite a bit, so I’m not getting very many of them.  I think we’ve eaten one so far.  One!  And the squirrel… all the rest!  And it’s always just as they are starting to ripen.  Ew look at this disgusting fly!  Flies are so gross!   This is a pretty nice shot I got of one though…~

That thieving squirrel has also stolen the last 2 ripe strawberries off of my strawberry plant.  😦

I saw him the other day in another part of the yard and his tummy looked big and fat, so my daughter’s scenario of him being just a poor innocent hungry little creature trying to survive out there in the wild is totally inaccurate!  I know he’s out there rubbing his grubby little paws together plotting his next attack!

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But on the bright side ~ there’s always a bright side…

This special surprise arrived in my garden the other day ~ all the way from Kentucky!  Some dear long distance friends sent me a snippet from their Trumpet Vine to try growing here in Minnesota to help attract butterflies and hummingbirds to my garden.  🙂I put it in a pot temporarily and will plant it in the ground in the fall when the weather is a little cooler.  Hope it grows!  Thanks so much Patty & Allan!  ♥

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And even though she’s back in town now, I’m still enjoying plant sitting my sis’s outdoor plants ~ including her lovely Gazanias…

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I sure am glad squirrels don’t eat flowers…

~Gardening is my therapy~