Monday, August 30, 2010

Summer of the Dragonflies & Butterflies

My girls have spent this hot, humid summer catching dragon, damselflies & butterflies.  Did you know that dragonflies bite?  I sure didn't!  But, L & B have explored every aspect of these quirky creatures in the most natural way- by observing, by looking, and touching and holding.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Ginger Lemonade

What could be more refreshing than ice cold lemonade during this last hot days of summer?

Here is a wonderful recipe that is also healthy. It really perks you up! 

* 2inches fresh ginger root
* 2-3 lemons
* stevia to taste
*2 quarts of water

Wash & peel ginger. Grate is finely over a bowl. Squeeze the grated ginger mash with your fingers to extract the juice (I covered mine with a lemon net) Discard the dry mash. Bring water to a boil. Remove from heat and add ginger juice ans juice from 2-3 lemons (I used 2). Add Stevia and stir well. *Note, I used fresh stevia leaves from my garden that I crushed with a mortar & pestle. I used about 5 leaves-wow! first time trying this and it is sweet :)
Drink hot or chill. Add ice and slices of lemon.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Kosher Pickles

Our second attempt at canning this summer ended up being a wonderful, easy jar of dill pickles!

After making the bread & butter batch, I was prepared for a 2-day process, but was pleasantly surprised how easy it was.

Per Jar:
5 pickles sliced into spears
9 oz. water
5 oz. white vinegar
1/4 tsp sugar
2 dill heads
1 large garlic clove
1 onion, chopped
1 tbsp kosher salt
handful of mustard seeds

Chop onion & garlic and add to clean jar. Add mustard seeds. Pack pickles in vertically. Boil water & vinegar just to a boil. Pour vinegar mixture into jar and refrigerate.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Bountiful Harvest

Our garden had an explosion around the end of July. We had so much to harvest every day!

Our cantaloupes did really well. We ended up yielding about 10, but some were small.

Here is a fabulous recipe that DH made with our sweet bell peppers.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Dog Days Parade

Our neighborhood held is "Dog Days of Summer" Parade and it was HOT!  The theme was "dog" days, so some floats were decorated with animals and there were dogs walking. L & B dressed up as cats and decorated their bikes with things and even put the cards on the spokes so they "flapped".

It was a lot of fun. The local fire dept was there with their trucks and tours for the kids. A face painter was on site to decorate.

The girls won "best bike"
They won a free rental for a bicycle built for 2- so that will be fun for us when it cools down a bit.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Sun-dried Tomatoes

We made our own sun dried tomatoes out of the small cherry ones and a few bigger that I cut.

It was very easy!  Just cut in half or quarter and gently remove seeds (this is optional)

Then place on a baking sheet and cover with cheese cloth or I used a clean, cotton burp cloth.

Place in the sun for about 2 days (90 degrees and above) and voila!

You can freeze in a baggie or put in herbed olive oil for refrigerator storage. Yummy in pasta or on pizza or in a salad.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Nature Table

My summer nature table was looking tired and I didn't have anything *special* going on.

Check out my Waldorf Connection blog for the nature table transformation (with a little help from a friend)

You can join me over there!  :)