To Amuse and Delight

Monday, October 5, 2015

Fall Food

Fall has hit New York. I have a fire in the fireplace, an ever brewing teapot, knitting projects in full swing, and a mind filled with the tastes, colors and smells of autumn. I recently discovered this one and have already made them four times. Sweet potato ravioli in browned butter with basil. They are so good and very addictive.  I make them when I am having company, so I don't eat too many.

I found them in Simply Ming One-Pot Meals. What makes them so easy is that you use pre-made wonton wrappers. I baked up a bunch of sweet potatoes and mashed them up in the Vitamix. I actually do a batch of sweet potato puree each week because I love my sweet potato smoothie every afternoon. When folks get that mid day coffee craving, I get a sweet potato smoothie craving.
I got that over at Sweet Potato Soul.

Super easy, I flavor the mash only with ground ginger and black pepper. You must use a little egg was to "glue" these guys together. 

When they are all assembled you brown them in salted butter, throw in lots of chopped fresh basil and there it is. Easy to make and way too easy to eat. A great appetizer or meal.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Time to Root

The bustle of “back to school” is in the air. Even for homeschoolers, there are new books to get, classes or tutors to obtain. With the excitement of new possibilities, new things to learn, new experiences, I will keep my focus on what true education is, a preparation for life. 

“In our mountain ravine, just above our swimming pool, a small tree grows on a rock in mid-stream. When the river is in flood and a roaring torrent pours over the little tree, whipping off its every leaf, it stands unmoved. Its roots grip the rock. We wanted the children to be like that. “Give them time to root,” we used to say to our advisors. “We are training them for storms and floods.”
-from Amy Charmichael’s Gold Cord

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Morning Mushroom Walk

 We are experiencing a NY heat wave, so we haven't been in the woods lately.  The heat makes us droopy and the most annoying loving bugs are out.  My family is missing the nature walks that are such a integral part of our life. This morning we set out extra early to avoid the heat and the bugs.

I didn't think that we would see so many mushrooms, the burning sun dries them up quickly. 

We were happily surprised that there were so many.

We stopped to eat our breakfast and the girls fed the fish.

Enjoying my morning tea on a nice shady rock, looking forward to autumn.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

a sucker for mushrooms

With the variety of shapes, colors and flavors, I just can't resist mushrooms. They are so clean and easy to cook.

Especially when they are packaged like this! So cute and tasty, I can't say no.

Breakfast is one of my favorite times for mushrooms, with scrambled eggs and basil...

or cabbage and fried egg.

In salad

In soup

Anywhere is right for mushrooms!

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Beach Holiday

We just came back from our annual beach holiday. We have been visiting the same place for the past 8 years. Not only the same beach, but the same hotel and when we can it, even the same room.

We go on many collecting walks up and down the beach. Each of us looking for what we consider treasures.
My husband is always on the lookout for the smoothest stone he can find. It has to be the best, he will carry it in his jacket pocket all year long.

I always go for the interesting textures and colors. I usually end up trying to figure out ways that I can wear them, like my seaweed scarf. My teen's favorite part of collecting is organizing and categorizing her finds afterwards.

This is so pretty. It could be a soft lacy knitted something.

It's not easy finding healthy snacks at the beach. A lot of fried foods and ice cream. At trip to the local Mart provided fruit, veggies and Larabars in convenient 5 packs. Snob that I am, I brought my own tea. The electric kettle is my friend. 

A friend and I are reading Out of a Silent Planet by C.S Lewis together. After my younger one got super slammed by an ocean wave I offered to take her to the pool. Thinking that she could use some calmer fun and I could get in some reading time. She had a grand time but I did not catch up on my reading! 

About my bag...I picked it up at a thrift store earlier this year and saved it for the beach. Little did I know that everywhere we went this coral motif would be there. Every fancy beach shop was filled with it on towels, blouses, bags, curtains, greeting cards, etc. Our usual hotel room was redecorated this year with this pattern. The lamps were even made to look like coral with lampshades on top! I appeared to be quite fashionably "in the know" with my thrift store treasure.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

The Punk Nugget

Introducing the latest addition to our pig pen. The breeder called her Cream Pie, my girls dubbed her The Punk Nugget. She is sweet and sassy and, as you can see very cute.

This is what she looks like right side up.

The Nugget was quickly accepted by the other gals and has settled in quite nicely. This is our current pig crew- The Groke (formerly Molly), The Punk Nugget, May and Little. We love them all, but we will always remember our first guinea pigs, the ones who started us out on this pig loving journey.

Gone but not forgotten - Pumpkin, Penny (my 1st and all time favorite) and The Woogie. 

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Looking Glass Flowers: mAd TeA 2015

'O Tiger-lily,' said Alice, addressing herself to one that was waving gracefully about in the wind, 'I WISH you could talk!'
'We CAN talk,' said the Tiger-lily: 'when there's anybody worth talking to.'
Alice was so astonished that she could not speak for a minute: 
it quite seemed to take her breath away. 

At length, as the Tiger-lily only went on waving about, she spoke again, in a timid voice--almost in a whisper. 
'And can ALL the flowers talk?'

'As well as YOU can,' said the Tiger-lily. 'And a great deal louder.'

'How is it you can all talk so nicely?' Alice said, hoping to get it into a better temper by a compliment. 'I've been in many gardens before, but none of the flowers could talk.'

Put your hand down, and feel the ground,' said the Tiger-lily. 'Then you'll know why.'
Alice did so. 'It's very hard,' she said, 'but I don't see what that has to do with 'it.'

'In most gardens,' the Tiger-lily said, 'they make the beds too soft--so that the flowers are always asleep.'

This sounded a very good reason, and Alice was quite pleased to know it. 'I never thought of that before!' she said.

The Menu:
"It's my own  invention."
Mushroom Tarts- chickpea shortbread with mushroom and wild arugula topping
5 Layer Cake- orange cake with cranberry cream and blueberries
Flower Sandwiches- pickled beet butter on whole wheat with chopped egg centers
and of course lots and lots of TEA

The Alice Dolls: Little Pullip Alice & 1966 Madame Alexander Alice

My Mad Tea Party 2013