Sunday, May 25, 2008

domestic bliss

so far it has been a fine weekend. enough indoor, outdoor, family and alone time for a perfect balance. it started off with a friday dinner on the deck (brats, homefries, salad, guacamole, chips). it is hard to believe that we have not yet had a meal on the deck this season, but we finally launched ourselves outwards, and enjoyed eating amongst leaf song and squirrel chatter.

emma bean joined us as well. tashi has had emma bean since she was four. we found her in a thrift store, after reading this very lovely story.

on saturday morning i arose and walked to the farmer's market. once again, i am trying to incorporate regular walks into my week. its immediate affects on my mental and physical well being are extremely positive. there are many interesting things to gaze upon while walking to the farmer's market, not the least of which is the mosaic on 5th street.

flowers spilling from gardens. . .

and tires tied to a fence. . .

the crowded farmer's market is a welcome site. i just wish it was located under cover, because in the blazing heat of high summer it can sometimes be intolerable.

but i love the mint ice tea, the organic greens, the juicy english cucumbers and bright red tomatoes, the colorful aisles of seasonal produce, the occasional fresh donut, and currently, strawberries. oh delightful strawberries.

in the middle of the day tashi had a baseball game.

and in the late afternoon i finally cleared my little plot-in-the-works. i raked the thick piles of leaves off, the cardboard had disintegrated, the grass was gone and i was left with a nice strip of soil in which to plant my future cottage garden. sheet mulching works!

surely i should have cleared this off much earlier in the season. seedlings should have been started and planted by now. but i've been battling with a rather irritating case of low-energy. it wasn't until yesterday that i finally got to work. i will probably turn and break up the soil some more, add some compost, purchase some flowering plants from the store that are well on their way, nestle them in, and see how it goes. i'm pretty much winging it, as i tend to do. any advice would be appreciated! my goal is to have thick strip of tall mixed flowers: foxglove, echinacea, shasta daisies, fennel, snap dragons, etc. a lovely colorful border to our yard.

for dinner, i came upon a quick and easy recipe from real simple magazine: baked rice and chicken. you basically mix in a big bowl: rice, diced tomatoes, chicken broth, orange juice, onions, parsley (we had no parsley so i used swiss chard), cumin, red pepper flakes, salt & pepper. pour into a baking dish. nestle in some chicken breasts (i had some organic chicken strips, which worked out fine). and bake for 35 minutes. easy and very delicious. i don't think the photo does it justice, but you get the idea.

after dinner we watched the emma thompson version of sense and sensibility with tashi. i enjoyed that film when i first saw it, and it was my introduction to the lovely kate winslet. but i think i prefer the recent masterpiece theater version. i'm still reading the book by the way. it's a book i read before bed, meaning, i fall asleep about two paragraphs in and never get anywhere with it.

talk about falling asleep, you probably have done just that with this post. do have a good day. or a good nap.

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