Friends, Community & Musings

  • Are we ready for some football!!

    This household was super excited to get back a little bit of normal and watch some football on Sundays! As soon as the Monday Night football theme ...
  • I scream, you scream, we all scream for pizza?

    OK so that’s really not the correct saying but everyone loves pizza, right?  It’s really a basic recipe that can be made into so many different combinations and used for a variety of meals.
  • A Welcome to Kitch Ann, The Recipe Explorer

    Once the chicken is done cooking, generously spoon the hot honey sauce over each piece of chicken and serve immediately. We have paired this with sautéed corn or with mashed potatoes or with a large salad. All three combinations have been successful.
  • Iris Borer

    If you’re like me and you don’t notice iris borer until mid-summer, you have more work on your hands. If you are seeing yellowed leaves and rot at the base of the iris stalk, you have to dig up the plants to inspect them. Knock off all of the dirt. Cut away rotten parts with a sharp knife (and remember to throw these in the garbage). Place the remaining rhizomes in a bucket of water that is 9 parts water and one part bleach. Let the plants soak for 5 to 10 minutes. The borers will drown.
  • May You Live

    There is a Chinese curse which says “May he live in interesting times.” Like it or not, we are living in interesting times, times of uncertainty; but they also can be the most creative of any time we have available to us. We just need to allow them to be. As Louise Hay, one of my favorite authors, states "The point of power is always in the present moment." Let us all live this now.
  • Tan Memory Foam Slippers

    As I take off the slippers and get ready to put them in the thrift store pile. I also ask myself why I waited so long to use them. Why do I wait? Why save something for just the right moment instead of enjoying it now? It's interesting how something like a pair of clearance slippers can trigger all this reflection and self examination.
  • Gardening and Metta Practice

    The original name of the practice is metta bhavana. Metta means platonic love or kindness, and thus, ‘loving-kindness.’ The word bhavana means development or cultivation. The practice centers on cultivating the emotion you feel in your heart and directing it towards others. Although traditionally associated with Buddhism, the meditation could have easily been born out of Christian roots given its goals. Metta is done in stages, much like gardening.
  • Affirmations

    The goal of the practice is to change what I have heard called our “stinking thinking.” Stinking thinking is the negative thoughts that constantly flood our minds. Thoughts like “I’m not enough.” Or “I should have done this better.” Through this practice, we look to turn our thoughts into a forward momentum that pushes us to transform the present and consequently, our future. Through the practice, I’ve come to see how I create my own reality through the thoughts I am having about the present.
  • Art of Gardening, Winter Reflections

    If I am willing to admit it, winter has become a respite for me in some respects. There is no pressure to wake up first thing and go to the garden. I can lollygag in my pajamas with a cup of tea and “Instagram.” I can appreciate what the garden brings without the need to fix, mind or tend. I can enjoy the memory. I can find new inspiration.
  • Messy Garden Club

    Everywhere I read online is talking about being a lazy gardener, a messy gardener. Why? It turns out this is good for your garden and the ecosystem! All that winter interest I left (branches, dried leaves, spent flowers and seed pods) are the egg nurseries for all kinds of beneficial bugs. These are also where the adult guys spend their winter hibernating. Leaving the clean up until it’s officially warm (Wisconsin = July, lol) allows the eggs to hatch, a new generation to be born and the hibernators to emerge. (I guess the magic temperature to wait for is 50 degrees!)
  • Homestead in Summer

    Who knows the secrets of a homestead in summer but its owner?
    I know where the blackberries grow.
    Under the pines; and when they will be ripe.
    Oh to be eaten by mosquitoes in July picking tonight's dessert. Just a bowl or two. With honey and walnuts. Enough but not plenty.
  • Unexpected Herbal Teas from in and around the Garden

    One of the great joys of gardening is herbs.  They are easy to grow and if you read my earlier post, drying them for use in cooking or teas is uncomplicated.  I like to dry enough herbs to have a supply on hand to sustain our household through the long Wisconsin winter.  One of the best uses of the herbs is tea.  There is nothing like a hot cup of tea from your own dried herbs on a cold winter night.  And if you study the medicinal qualities of various herbs, you can use them to relieve ailments and symptoms.  For me, herbs can also include plants that some consider weeds.