Monday, August 18, 2014

Summer Musings

I promised myself that I would go straight to my office this morning
and do some long awaited desk and computer work... getting lost in my gardens for what seems like 15 minutes and
ends up being 2 hours...

I couldn't do it! The morning sun was out after a lovely early rain shower
I had to check the cucumbers, and then of course go on slug patrol in the winter squash
and then there were beans to pick...

What a beautiful summer it has been, not a day over 80
the perfect amount of water for the gardens
long full days
so much bounty
I am so grateful for all the moments

I miss the "Peas" (Ally is missing in the picture)
Such good people. 
 I gave them my time and my reputation
and they honored both
Never missing a day and putting out some delicious food
Stay tuned for info on their soon to come Cookbook

The wine bar on Thursday nights has been a blast
So much so that I will continue into fall and 
 see who wants to keep coming as the days darken into winter

Eddie gave me a lovely rock wall, dividing the parking lots
and Renee is promising a garden shed on the old barn foundation sometime

After coveting the sweet peas at the farmer's market mine finally started dancing


Boating has been less this season so far, but we had a lovely island picnic
last weekend and hope to make up time in September

I've been preserving bounty like crazy
jams, blueberries in syrup, pickles of all sorts, hoping I get some tomatoes to roast

Breakfast on the porch on Sunday was buckwheat crepes stuffed with 
Spruce Hill Farm's goat cheese and my blueberries in syrup

Lunch gatherings with summer friends at Lily's has been a highlight

Last week Becky and I cooked straight from the garden
with cipollini onions in balsamic vinegar and olive oil, stuffed squash blossoms,
purslane and avocado with lemon juice and sea salt
and a cabbage and kholrabi slaw with fresh dill and dried cherries

Just as we were ready to dig in, Karolyn from Pine State showed up
with new red wines to try!  I couldn't have planned it better if I tried.

I keep rejoicing in the bounty, knowing August is winding down

But there is always so much to look forward to...

I so hope you are enjoying these last days of summer.

Be well,

Monday, July 21, 2014

A Day To Remember

A country fair in my gardens 
A dream come true.

 Phenomenal artisans, chefs, growers and musicians


A little wine, a lot of sunshine, but not too hot,
 ( muddy and wet from all the rain, but you know I don't enjoy focusing on the negative)

And to end a perfect day, Tim spotted
chanterelle mushrooms under my trees!
I sautéed them in butter and sage
and tossed them over some gf egg fettucine with this devine cheese
from Cowgirl Creamery a friend and fellow chef left behind.

Someone asked me yesterday if I drink a lot of coffee.
I said I don't drink any!
I've been sipping on fresh red clover blossom tea with a little mint lately.
Seems to do the trick. :0)

So, so gratefully,

Monday, July 7, 2014


I just made strawberry jam with my last quarts of berries
from Long Cove Farm

Honey for sweetener with
 Cinnamon, Vanilla Bean and Pinot Noir
Really delicious, and special

I mentioned this book at the end of last year's season 
and wanted to share it again as the season of saving begins

His methods and ideas are awesome
(for jams - high heat and quick reduction, no pectin)
and I've had wonderful results so far -
even with my tweaking

This jam is a version of what he calls a "fancy" jam
and was inspired by the open bottle of Pinot Noir 
left from Thursday night's wine bar


6 quarts strawberries,
washed, hulled and quartered
2 cups honey
1 cinnamon stick
1 vanilla bean
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1/2 cup pinot noir

12 jelly jars (8 oz.) 

Place the berries, honey, cinnamon and vanilla bean in a bowl
and allow to macerate for 30 minutes

Turn the fruit-honey mixture into a large pot
Bring to boil over high heat.

Stir vigorously and often over the coarse of cooking to break berries into a paste
After 10-15 minutes add the Pinot Noir.

Continue reducing to the gel point, another 6-8 minutes, stirring all the while

Discard the spices  and stir for another minute or so or until as smooth as you want it

Ladle it into prepared jars , leaving 1/4 inch headspace 
Seal jars and process in a water bath for 10 minutes


Monday, June 30, 2014


Maybe it's the dandelion root tincture I take everyday that I made in the spring,
but I feel simply giddy with joy this summer

Saturday was the Ready by 21 Mentoring party

We held it in the gardens at Edgewood Farm and greeted
everyone with rhubarb cocktails as they arrived
It was a wonderful summer affair

The roses are in bloom

The laundry is on the line

There are fresh flowers from the flower garden in the entrance way

We are eating from the vegetable garden every night

I am in love with Kohlrabi this summer.

Being hypothyroid, eating raw brassicas isn't suggested
So , I've been slicing it and sautéing, with the greens from the bulb too
and it is wonderful!! 

 I'm barefoot in the grass as much as possible
and I've managed to make the days last a bit longer.
You know how?  

I don't take my computer home with me from work.
You would be amazed at how much time you fiddle away on it without even realizing it.

I hope your summer pleasures are many,
 that your days last long and your nights are sweet



This was inspired by Claudette who was making rhubarb juice the day
I went to the farm to scope out how I wanted to lay out the party,

Juice fresh rhubarb 
Claudette cooks hers down and strains it, I put it through my juicer
(Tip: cut it into very small pieces before putting it in your juicer to keep
the fibers from jamming it up - I learned this the hard way)

I warmed the juice and added enough honey to
counter that sour punch and jarred it up.

We served it on ice with a shot of vodka, some seltzer water
and fresh mint.  Delicious

Monday, June 23, 2014

Summer Crazies

And the season begins...

Two weeks ago Renee and I spent the weekend
in Greenville on Moosehead Lake at the most
wonderful Blair Hill Inn

It rained for two days, which was fine, as I sat perched in this
window seat in our room overlooking this view

Cocktails at 5:30 in the lounge, an extraordinary dinner at 6:30 each night,
the nicest innkeepers ever

The sun came out on our last day and we hiked to a waterfall on 
the Appalachian Trail and ended with BBQ Pork and cole slaw in Munson

All this only three hours away!! 

Then, on the last day of school some of my 
Real World 101 kids came with lobsters
and laughter

and we celebrated the end of a great year

Then, this past weekend was the debut of my
summer entrepreneurial program, Peas in a Pod
The new business owners, pictured above, prepped all day on Friday 

and rocked it on Saturday at the Bridge Celebration on Deer Isle.

They will be selling delicious food three days a week
on the Island this summer for 6 weeks. Tuesdays at the Congregational
Church in Deer Isle, Wednesdays at the DI Farmer's Market across the street
and Thursdays in the PERC parking lot in Stonington.
Rumor has it that I will be teaching them how to make
delicious pies, and they will be taking orders :0)

As I drove over the causeway today returning from Blue Hill,
there were groups of folks splashing it up at that beach,
cars were lined up at Sand Beach, downtown Stonington was
a one lane road, my eggplants have flowers on them

and the Brays brought me the first of this year's strawberries from their garden.

Game on.


Wednesday, June 11, 2014


" Your truth is your truth.
You don't have to make excuses. "

I'm taking this quote and running with it.
My truth -  healthy soil means healthy planet and healthy everything

- I don't need to make excuses for buying organic
and eating non gmo

The look on my guests faces when they eat what I make

And the elation I feel every time I crack
one of these beautiful organic eggs from my friend

and turn it into something luscious like this homemade mayo
is everything I need to believe.

I hope you have a chance to dance
barefoot in the grass as summer wraps her arms around us.

If you are around, stop by Lily's House
to share a moment and a smile

The Wine Bar will be open every Thursday from 4-7
The House Fair is all set for July 20th from 10 - 4
and I'll keep you posted on anything else we cook up


Friday, May 23, 2014

When I Was Your Age...

On Tuesday Ready by 21 Mentoring hosted 20 mentors and the sophomore class
of DISHS on a trip to Isle au Haut for a day of fun, community service and 
"getting to know you"

It was wonderful and I continue to be blown away by the quality of
the community I live in.

Our youth are kind, curious and full of possibility  and our
adults are kind, curious and full of possibility
The perfect match!

As the school year winds down
- and I'm back to mowing the lawn - 
It is fun to remember all the ways we've brought older and younger together this year

 It really does enrich everyone's life, so much, to connect
 and share exactly where each of us is in the here and now.

The one thing that seems to stand out for me is that almost every
adult that has come to be with the kids has said
"When I was your age...."

The cool thing is that the end to that sentence hasn't always
been steeped in what it used to be and what they should be doing

The messages have been more like;

"I thought I could do anything"
"I thought I was invincible"
"I was so worried"
"I didn't have half the pressures you all have since social media"
"I had so much fun"
"I thought I'd never make it out"

And as I continue to mow the lawn
(not because my Dad told me to, but because I have chosen to)
 I realize that I haven't changed much since I was "that age"

The real difference is that
time and experience has given me the wisdom
 to tweak some of those early beliefs

I still believe I can do anything - that I choose to do
My sense of invincibility has turned into a commitment to a healthy lifestyle
I've learned that worrying is always an option, but truly overrated
We are all learning about social media together
and the fun that used to get me in trouble is now legal!

The biggest one for me was that feeling that I'd never get out
But I did.  and I did again.  and I did again

Our possibilities are truly endless
We just have to recognize and love that 
sweet, crazy, impulsive, passionate, stymied teenager 
inside of all of us.
Give her a big hug, thanking her for the opportunities and
forgiving her the mistakes.

Enjoy your holiday weekend and thank you for all you are