Monthly Archives: March 2017

March 2017 in Spy Garden

I have been busy with a few things (you know…working full time, graduate school, kids…just a couple things! Ha!) and embracing spring by considering the season fresh, bright and energetic (instead of just “more busy”). (I’m all about a euphemism.) This means I am forced to be more organized. By nature I am more about spontaneity than preparation but planning does have its perks. Such as more free time for hobbies.

Painting in progress; light and bright!

Cheerful vibes

Checking out a gallery

One new thing I’ve started doing is making a general plan of dinners for each week. I notice this really helps avoid any produce being forgotten and spoiling. We’ve had a few delicious and super easy successes this week so just wanted to share. I am totally not a recipe person. (I feel they are too bossy.) So this is really just meant to be inspirational for trying new things in the name of the spring season!

Monday: Roasted chicken, spinach garbanzo cakes*, lemon garlic tahini dipping sauce

*A block of defrosted and drained frozen spinach mixed with a cup(ish) of garbanzo bean flour and a little water and then just cook like pancakes. I also added garlic but you could add any spice/combination of spices. These are delicious and were a big hit. I plan to make all different variations of these (you could use any vegetable too).

Tuesday: Wild caught salmon marinated with orange and thyme, baked sweet potato chips, orange slices

Wednesday: Pork Steaks, Peas

Thursday: Rabbit (Bun-Bun) Stew…Hahah just kidding. But seriously though I think our rabbits would be delicious. They eat all of our scraps of organic produce, fresh alfalfa hay…And just think, if we did raise rabbits for meat (and fur; hello ear muffs!) we would get to have way more rabbits as pets, which would mean greater variety of bunny photos…tutorials on hide tanning…it would certainly make for fresh blog content, right?

Adorable Dinner?

“Bunny TV”

Thursday (seriously): Carrot Lentil soup with ginger and garlic, Flat bread*, Quinoa cakes (eggs, quinoa, parmesean cooked up like pancakes or in the oven)

*Homemade bread on a weeknight you say?! Yes! Whole grain flours (I like a mix of garbanzo bean flour, ground flaxseed and coconut flour), water and a little oil and you are in business! Flat breads don’t have yeast so you don’t need to wait for the dough to rise; after kneading you just let the dough rest for ten minutes or so. Roll them out and they bake up in minutes in the oven or on a griddle. You can also add spices or seeds to these.

While I’m cooking dinner I also make our lunches for the following day (with the exception of Babyzilla who eats very nice snacks and lunches courtesy of the Forest School chef).

Here is her school’s menu from this week for even more easy meal ideas:

And check out the construction going on at Forest School; they are expanding!

In garden-food news, we started eggplants, tomatoes and peppers; several different varieties of each.

I didn’t buy any new seed packets this year (yet) as I was trying to use up the supply of seeds I already have. Some of the seed packets are a few years old so some may not germinate well but in my experience seeds are usually fine for several years past the packaged date.

Today in the garden I saw quite a few honeybees. We plant lots of herbs and flowers to attract bees.

One of two lilac bushes in the garden

Tulip (my favorite)

Thanks Nana and Pop for the basketball hoop; the kids are loving it!

Check out that purple!

Awesome, right?!

Before I go rest up for another busy energetic spring day, I want to share two awesome new blogs of old friends of mine from Wesleyan University.

The first is Boheme Voyage; the stories of a couple traveling around the world. The photos and writing are excellent and the food looks amazing (hello, more recipe/non-recipe ideas)! I especially love that she focuses on architecture…and plants!

Architecture in Hue, Vietnam by Ashley Trudeau

Vertical Garden in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam by Ashley Trudeau

So check it out! Here is the link again: Boheme Vogage

The second is Dr. Elizabeth Winter’s website. The design of her site is impeccable. She shares excellent and practical health advice on the blog and there is also great information on the other pages of the site. Here is an excerpt…

Unlike conventional Western medicine which focuses on disease, integrative medicine focuses on all the aspects of a patient’s life—physical, emotional, mental, spiritual and environmental—that contribute to a patient’s health and well-being. Science has unequivocally shown us there is a real and profound connection between the brain and the immune system and our emotional state and disease. When we ask, “How are you feeling today?” we really mean it, and we spend the time to explore your relationships, happiness, work environment and stress level, believing these all contribute to one’s health and overall wellness.

Whether we are talking about migraines, joint pain, infertility or constipation, we are talking about symptoms, all of which have an underlying cause. Often times in conventional Western medicine, symptoms are misinterpreted as diseases. Integrative medicine works to treat the underlying cause of your symptoms. In doing so, your underlying health status is improved overall.

Functional/integrative/environmental medicine is the field in which I plan to practice when I finish this excruciating invigorating doctorate program so I am especially interested in her site. Check it out! Here is the link again: Dr. Elizabeth Winter 

Hope you all have a wonderful Friday and are feeling energized by spring!

Spring Break 2017

Butkus hopping around the garden on St. Patrick’s Day

Nana and Pop visited this past week and the kids had a wonderful time with them for their spring break; it was a low key week of cold St. Louis weather capped off with a beautifully mild St. Patty’s day!

Nana taking pictures of…

the beautiful Bradford pear blooms…

Like snow!

And then we did get snow!

These are those same white-flowered type of trees (Bradford pear) but after the cold weather

Nana bowling

For the record, I beat everyone in bowling. Haha

Tiny wildflowers

Enjoying the view

Aunt Spy also came up for a visit!

Going green

Chasing bunnies

Scolding Bun-Bun (trouble bunny)

Snuggle Bunny

Dexie

A very spring-y picture

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Early (Early) Spring in Spy Garden

Spy Garden 3.3.17

Spy Garden 3.3.17

Forsythia

Forsythia

Buds galore

Buds galore

February daffodils

February daffodils

I must concede that spring has sprung, which I’m not thrilled about. I really love winter and we definitely got jipped this year…I am still hoping for a deep cold snap (to kill off ticks, squash bugs, etc.!) But of course spring is beautiful and definitely means better (less gray!) pictures to share.

Even scrabble is telling me it's spring!

Even scrabble is telling me it’s spring!

Anyone know what this is?

Anyone know what this is?

I was thinking spinach (that self-sowed) but I don’t remember seeing spindly seedlings (which spinach usually has). I tasted the leaves and they basically taste like lettuce/spinach. Just looking for confirmation that this plant is edible!

In Spy Garden animal news:

Every Bunny was Kung Fu Fighting

Every Bunny was Kung Fu Fighting

The bunnies (all male), were fighting and being really mean to one another (spring hormones?) so now they are all each in their own compartment. I am wondering 1. Why did we get three bunnies? 2. Isn’t that kind of overkill? 3. How would Bun-Bun look as a pair of one-of-a-kind earmuffs? (he is the meanest and really bit/cut up poor Butkus’ ears).

Puff Puff is the nicest

Puff Puff is the nicest

Gronk II

Gronk II

Gronk I met with his end in an unfortunate tank-cleaning incident a few months ago. Gronk II is his replacement. He seems more sprightly than the first one and is quite a challenge to photograph.

New uniforms for baseball (more signs of spring!)

New uniforms for baseball (more signs of spring!)

Bark

Bark

The first peek of asparagus

The first peek of asparagus

Bluebird

Bluebird

Deer at Dawn

Deer at Dawn

Little Bloom

Little Bloom

Glorious plots

Glorious plots

We even found a dead baby snake; which is soooo early for snakes to be emerging. The snake appeared to have been run over.

We think it was a baby copperhead.

We think it was a baby copperhead.

We later “found” it again; in the driveway:

Flattened haha

Flattened haha

"Spring beauty" or "Fairy spud"; so named because it has tiny, edible, potato-shaped roots

“Spring beauty” or “Fairy spud”; so named because it has tiny, edible, potato-shaped roots

Lots of homes

Lots of homes

T-shirts at Forest School (and spot the rebel not wearing the school uniform t-shirt!)

T-shirts at Forest School (and spot the rebel not wearing the school uniform t-shirt!)

Check out the power lines in the background...

Check out the power lines in the background…

!!!

!!!

Apparently, they were separating the lines to prepare for replacing one of the power lines.

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And it was quite windy out!!!

Our version of an adrenaline rush! ahaha

Our version of an adrenaline rush! ahaha

Mesmerizing Moss

Mesmerizing Moss

Dexie

Dexie

A very thick white milkglass jar found in the woods

A very thick white milkglass jar found in the woods

Checking out...

Checking out…

Some sort of cocoon

Some sort of cocoon

Bark

Bark

She loves collecting rocks

She loves collecting rocks

Hiking along a dry creek bed near our house

Hiking along a dry creek bed near our house

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Happy Spring!