Goodbye relaxing nights and those extra 20 minutes of sleep in the morning. You are being replaced with garden “engineering” which includes layout, planning, planting, weeding, working, and non-stop love and care!
Today’s project was getting some of our late producing vegetables planted. We did pumpkins, butternut squash, kale, cabbage, brussel sprouts and peas. The kids love to help with this and the tween queen planted a container of Morning Glory, Cosmos and Zinnia.
And of course there’s always a jokester in the group!! I knew something was up when the giggling was getting out of control.
If you saw my garden tip on Facebook, these are the little cups I save throughout the winter to use as planters. These are lemon ice and yogurt containers. Poke a few holes in the bottom and they are perfect for starting plants.
You can store these on a tray with sides and fill with water from the bottom so it hits the roots and nourishes the plant and you don’t have to water each one individually or with a sprayer. This is a HUGE time saver!
And now they are gently covered with the sunlight hitting them to begin their growing process. Fingers crossed they all produce.
You have to like the sourness of Greek Yogurt to like this bread. It was a great bread fresh out of the oven for breakfast as well as warmed up for dinner with a salad and turkey tenderloin.
Friends of mine posted this on their facebook page and it’s so simple with only 3 ingredients (2 if you don’t want the outside coated in cornmeal). I had to try it.
This week I am going to try it with peach or cherry flavored yogurt and a glaze to see how it is as a sweet bread. Will post more on that later.
You can see more pictures of how simple this was to make on my Facebook page: Greek Yogurt Bread
There are times when life is so busy I can’t get my stress relieving walks in. The past few months have been that way and I can feel my shoulders creeping up around my neck with tension. The best thing for me is a few days of “detoxing” with great healthy food kicked off with a veggie packed smoothie every morning.
You can make smoothies with almost any vegetable and fruit you have.
I used a handful of kale, blackberries, flax seeds, slice of apple, 1/2 cup orange mango juice, 5 ice cubes and a squeeze of honey for this one. It looks brown but it’s a deep purple color. It was sweet, filling and packed full of great nutrients.
The next morning I had kale and collard greens with some oj, and remember those flash frozen peaches (Flash Freezing Peaches) I made in the summer? I threw a few of those in with some cranberries and black berries. Another great body boost full of goodness!
Tomorrow I will use the frozen cherries we picked (freezing fruit) as well as the orange juice ice cubes (OJ ice cubes).
Whatever you have works and you can sweeten it if need be with honey or agave.
Throughout the day drink a few glasses of water with lemon.
After 2 days I can already feel the tension leaving my body!!
And here I thought I was clean eating all weekend!!!!
A small bowl of colorful berries is a great way to get those extra vitamins into the kids during their busy day.
The reusable containers help to keep “green” and fit perfectly into lunch boxes.
Some homemade soup, favorite snack, and nutritious dessert to compensate for the sugar drink make for a very kid friendly lunch packed full of vitamins and the energy they need!
Today was the day to make a few batches of crockpot applesauce. This is great for dinners, to put in kids lunches and for baking!!! There are a lot of recipes that cut down on fat and calories by replacing oil with applesauce. It’s great to have some ready for whenever you need it.
I freeze our applesauce but you can also place it in jars and can it. We always make a few different batches and today we made cinnamon, chunky, and plain.
You can find our family recipe on my facebook page here: Applesauce recipe
Here’s a little peek at what will be happening in my country kitchen tomorrow 🙂
Smoothies are a great way to sneak certain vegetables, vitamins and minerals into your diet as well as your children. I made one the other day for us with Kale, Strawberries, Orange Juice, honey and ice cubes. The kids had no idea what was in it and they drank it right down.
Here is how I made it:
5 Strawberries washed and dehulled
6 chopped small kale leaves
1 Tablespoon honey
1/4 cup orange juice
5 ice cubes
Put all in the blender and blend until smooth. Great flavor and I snuck in those extra greens!!
A nice light salad is perfect for lunch or dinner on warm days. Tonight I decided to make a caprese salad. Most places leave the tomatoes whole, but I like to chop it all into nice size chunks and drizzle with balsamic vinegar. This was a great side to serve with our leftover Pork Roast (recipe here).
Tomato season is right now so get those tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil and balsamic vinegar and give this is a try. Chop it all or slice it and drizzle with the balsamic. You can add some fresh ground pepper if you like. You can also chop it very fine and serve as bruschetta on crusty bread. It’s a great summer food 🙂
When any berries or fruits are in season it’s a scramble to get them at the best possible price for two reasons. First because they are wonderful to eat/snack/cook with after a long winter and second because you can freeze or can them so you have wonderful fresh natural fruit for the whole year!!
Our local grocery store had buy 2 pints of blueberries and get 3 free. That is 5 pints for the price of 2!!!! Of course I bought 10 as that will hold us through the year with pies and frozen berries for yogurt, oatmeal, pancakes, smoothies, and blueberry syrup for ice cream.
Here is what I do with our berries to keep them as fresh as possible in the refrigerator and how I store them for the winter in the freezer:
FLASH FREEZING: Wash the berries and remove all stems. Pat them dry with papertowels or a non lint dish cloth. Lay them on a cookie sheet and let them air dry so they are not wet. Once dry place in the freezer for 30 minutes. Remove them and store them in freezer bags. They will not stick together so you can grab as few or as may as you will need and will be perfectly sweet when you remove them to use.
TO KEEP IN THE REFRIGERATOR:: Place the berries in a large bowl with a teaspoon of white vinegar and cover with water (you do not have to remove stems unless you want to). Let sit for about 4 minutes. Rinse thoroughly and pat dry. Place them in an airtight container laying them flat on a papertowel. Use a papertowel in between each layer. Place top on. These should hold your berries in the fridge much longer than if you just place them in there in the containers they came in.