Garden Update

While I was back at home for a couple days, I got out into the garden, and was able to snap some photographs of it.  Enjoy!

(Click on images to view larger.)

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Home Cookin’

While I’ve been out of town, I’ve had the opportunity to cook multiple meals for the family with I’ve been staying.  They’ve enjoyed all the different meals I’ve created, and keep saying that I’m spoiling them!  Well, that seems to be a good sign!  🙂

I thought I’d post a couple of the recipes, and photos to go along with it, that I’ve used.   Pinterest is a great place to find recipes.  In fact I found a couple of the ones I’m posting here on Pinterest.   (Yes, I know, that’s amazing isn’t it?!  I actually made a recipe from Pinterest, instead of just pinning a bunch!)

Stuffed Zucchini

Their picture is much better than mine!

My version of the stuffed zucchini recipe.

My version of the stuffed zucchini recipe.

This recipe is super easy, and really delicious!  I bet you could even get your kids to eat it.  😉

Sweet Potato Fries

Yum!

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Sweet potato fries – yeah!

These were not as crispy as I would’ve liked, but that probably could’ve been attained if I would have flipped them over one by one, as the recipe said.  Even so, they were delicious!

Avocado, Corn and Tomato Salad

DE-lish! (Not my image; unfortunately I wasn’t able to photograph my version.)

This was so refreshing, and amazingly delicious! (Well, maybe not that amazing, since there was corn AND avocados in it!)   It would go great with anything Mexican, and especially some corn tortilla chips.  Mmmm, it’s making me hungry just looking at it.

Banana Nut Cake

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Mother’s Day cake

Even though I wasn’t with my Mom on Mother’s Day, I still made a cake in her honor, as well as for my Aunt, who I am currently with.  The banana nut cake recipe I used turned out well, though not overly spectacular.  Plenty moist and sweet, and it hit home.

Cranberry-Walnut Oatmeal Cookies

The mixture of cranberries, walnuts and an oatmeal cookie is scrumptious.

The combination of cranberries, walnuts and an oatmeal cookie is scrumptious.

This recipe I got of the side of a Food Club® oatmeal container.  It turned out really well, especially if you like cranberries, and is as easy to make as any other cookie.  Delicious warm or cold, and especially yummy with a cool glass of milk!  In fact, I ate two or three of these for breakfast this morning.

Cranberry-Walnut Oatmeal Cookies

The mixture of cranberries, walnuts and an oatmeal cookie is scrumptious.

The mixture of cranberries, walnuts and an oatmeal cookie is scrumptious.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) margarine or butter
  • 1/4 cup vegetable shortening (or just use butter)
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2-1/2 cups Old Fashioned Oats
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 cups dried cranberries**
  • 1 cup chopped pecans (or I used walnuts)

**I actually only used about 1 cups worth, and that turned out to be plenty.

Directions:

Beat sugars, margarine (or butter) and shortening until creamy.  Add eggs, milk and vanilla; mix well.  Combine oats, flour, baking power, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl.  Add to margarine (or butter) mixture; mix well.  Stir in cranberries and pecans (or walnuts).  Chill dough 1 hour.**  Preheat oven to 350°F.  Drop by rounded teaspoons onto ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake 10 to 12 minutes.  Let stand 5 minutes before removing to racks to cool.

Make ~5 dozen.

**Or not – you don’t have to, it just makes it easier to put on the cookie sheet.

Virtual “Gardening”

Golden radishes!

Golden radishes!

As you may know, I (Phoebe) am currently out of town, and unavailable to tend to our Back to Eden garden.  But, thanks to my wonderful family back at home, I’ve been able to “garden” virtually.  🙂  Through pictures, and a couple live Skype video chats, I’ve been able to experience our garden in a whole new way!  Unfortunately, it’s not quite the same – you can’t pick up the water hose, and give the garden a good spray down, or dig your hands down deep into the earth.  But, even still, I’ve seen the garden grow, from afar!

It’s pretty awesome.  The tomatoes are growing big and strong, and blossoms and tiny tomatoes are already showing.  The onions are big, and it’s almost time to harvest them.  One has already been harvested, and it was about the size of a baseball!  (I’m so excited!!)  The radishes are growing well, too – we need to get some more seeds planted, so that we’ll have some later in the summer.  Unfortunately, the peppers aren’t doing too well (as reported from my family!), and some of the herbs aren’t doing well either.

But, overall, it looks like the garden is doing great!  I’ll get to see it in person tomorrow – maybe, just maybe, I’ll have enough time to make a short video.
In the meantime, you’ll have to be satisfied with these photos.  🙂

onion

My dear Mom and Dad. Not quite sure what they were doing with this garden-fresh onion, but it’s a cute picture, nonetheless! 🙂 Mom was a gardener long before I was, and really instilled in us the importance of gardening. She also made it fun!

These babies are gettin’ big!

radishes
A red radish.
Some unripe raspberries.

Some unripe raspberries.

tomatoes 2

Tomato cages are a must-have when growing tomatoes!

Our little raspberry patch.  It's so cute, isn't it?!  :)

Our little raspberry patch. It’s so cute, isn’t it?! 🙂

I believe this is the yellow pear tomato plant.

I believe this is a yellow pear tomato plant.

Lettuce gallore!

Lettuce galore!

A Garden Conversation~

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It’s amazing what things can happen when one gardens.  What conversations one can have when out in God’s beautiful creation, gardening!  Yesterday morning, my sister Abby and I were outside in the backyard checking out the garden; watering, weed pulling, etc.  We decided to harvest some of the lettuce that has gone crazy, before it bolts and turns bitter.  Well, our neighbor across the alley was out, and I said to Abby, “Hey, why don’t we go over to our neighbor and offer some of this lettuce to her?”  At that, we hopped the fence, and trekked up the alley, and over to Ms. Gale’s fence.  She was out tending to her own yard, which is full of beautiful flowers.  She gladly accepted some of our homegrown lettuce, and said she’d have a little salad with her lunch.  A conversation then ensued about her granddaughter and grandson-in-law who live just down the alley from her (and across the alley from us).  She said that she had been talking with her grandson-in-law a few days before, and asked him if he had seen “that garden over there” (referring to ours).  He said that “he sure did” see it.  Well, on Sunday we had seen him installing their own backyard garden.  So, maybe we inspired him to garden?  If so, that’s awesome!  We told her that she should send her grandson-in-law over and we’d love to talk with him about gardening.

So, you see, a simply act of sharing some garden produce turned into a wonderful conversation about gardening (oh, and also a bunch of her beautiful peonies), and hopefully, a new relationship with our neighbors.  Maybe something will turn of it – like a co-garden effort – or maybe not, but either way, passing along some of God’s blessings by way of garden produce is just great!  I’d highly recommend that you share any extra produce you may receive from your garden with your neighbors, friends and family.  It’s totally worth it.

Check out the video below if you want to hear the story ‘in person’, and get a short update on our garden.

Thanks for stopping by!!