The green giant, or how many ways can you cook a zucchini?

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As the first of my harvest comes in I am reminded of what it must have been like to live off the land.  In the summer you ate whatever was in season.  You went out to the garden and that was what you ate.  No one at peaches in December or asparagus in September.  For the past week it has been all about zucchini at my house.   Soon it will be something else, and if I’m lucky, an assortment of vegetables.  Unfortunately, when you have one zucchini you have ten.  They don’t cooperate and ripen one at a time.  There is no way I can eat all these veggies, so I am coming up with imaginative ways to eat, store, or repurpose it.   This post is about the green wonder. Continue reading

How does your garden grow?

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Cauliflower in front surrounded by tomatoes plants.

I haven’t written anything about my garden project in a while.  This is part of my push for self-sufficiency and reducing my carbon footprint.  Why drive to the store and buy food that has traveled in a truck or train when you can grow it in the back yard?   Now, if I could only give up chocolate.  Unfortunately you can’t grow that anywhere in my neighborhood.

After weeks of rain, we now have the opposite — long, hot days.  I have to water every evening, carrying my two water cans back and forth to the standpipe to fill them, and then repeat.   I finally got a hose to attach to my existing one to reach the garden, and a spray attachment.  I promised to keep you informed about what was working and what was not.  Mostly, it has been successful, but there have been some challenges and some failures. Continue reading

Spring means it’s time to plant

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Since the weather started to warm up my thoughts have turned to my garden.  I have to admit I’m not much for flowers.    With the deer that come up on my front yard after dark, there’s no point planting anything in the front yard that the deer like.   There are some plants they don’t like:  bleeding hearts, daffodils, lavender, and others.   I found a list of them on a website. Continue reading

Vegetable tagine with friends

Over the weekend we hosted our first dinner party.  Well, not exactly a party in the traditional 1950s sense, but a dinner with friends.   Since I love to eat and I love to cook it was an opportunity to try out something new.   I decided to focus the meal around Turkish food, one of my favorite cuisines.  What’s not to love?  Garlic, tomatoes, eggplant, olives, feta cheese . . . seriously, this is great food.

The lentil soup is already done.

The lentil soup is already done.

I stuck to some old standbys that I knew would come out well.  I started with baba ghanoush and artichoke hummus as starters with pita bread.  For the soup course I made a red lentil and bulgar soup.  For the main course I served zucchini squares and vegetable tagine. Continue reading

Time Travel at Zern’s Farmers Market

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On Friday nights and Saturdays the place to go for local food items and an assortment of other shopping pleasures is Zern’s.   This place is hard to describe.  It’s part food market, part flea market, and part craft market.  Wrap it all up into an indoor shopping experience in Gilbertsville, Pennsylvania.   This iconic place has been around a long time.  As a boy in the 1960s, my husband rode his bicycle there from his home in Pottstown, about six miles .   Continue reading

Twas the night before Christmas . . .

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Twas the night before Christmas and in Marla’s house, we were busy preparing for a day that would not interest a mouse,

For we had no presents, no tinsel, no tree, just two grown up people in wait for a  day that was free,

Our fridge was packed, our house nice and warm, as we hunkered down for a quiet day outside the norm,

No children were waiting, no brew was chilling, as we eagerly looked forward to a day that was thrilling,

When what on our lawn did we spy from the door but some deer, a grouse, squirrels, and wait . . . birds galore!

As darkness descended on our small village street we heard the sound of peace, joy, and a new day to meet.

So my virtual friends I send you a warm greeting, in hopes that one day we may be meeting,

And wishing you all a joyful weekend, filled with family, food, good cheer and old friends.
Continue reading

In a holiday frame of mind

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It’s that time of year when we get together with family and friends.  We go to parties and eat and drink too much, stay out too late, spend too much money and flit between a state of bliss and stress.  We want to drift into that place where all we feel is sweetness and light.  Inevitably we are sometimes disappointed.   Our plans don’t come to fruition and our Continue reading

When the lights go out

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Today we returned from a week of vacation.  We were visiting family in Florida for an extended Thanksgiving holiday so I haven’t been blogging.  This will be a short blog so you know I haven’t completely dropped off the face of the earth.  I’ll get back to a more regular schedule once I get unpacked and catch up with email and phone messages.  I don’t know about you, but when I am away from home for more than two or three days, it takes me some time to get back to my routine.  Things pile up, and yet life has to go on.   Continue reading

Saturday at Rhinebeck: how to have fun in the midst of crowds

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Saturday at Rhinebeck means lines and crowds and waiting for almost everything including the ladies room.  Being a man at Rhinebeck has its advantages.  Getting in and out of the restroom is the first, and getting a lot of attention from yarn-crazed women is another.  My husband is a real trooper.  He comes along with me to these fiber gatherings and doesn’t complain.  He doesn’t always tag along with me, but that’s ok.  There are some more manly things to do, like wine-tasting and watching the dog herding demonstrations.  He comes home with some bottles of chile sauce and can eat whatever he wants. Continue reading