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QUENCH

 

HANDMADE GATHERINGS

 

A YEAR OF PIES!

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: HOME DAIRY

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: KEEPING BEES

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: CANNING & PRESERVING

 

HOMEMADE LIVING: KEEPING CHICKENS


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  • Players gonna play. Huxley and his buddy Bay, doing their little guy thing today at the perennially lovely @thencarboretum.
  • The garden got blanketed with what I'm hoping was winter's last gasp this past week. I'm ready for those snow-covered strawberry beds in the foreground to start putting out juicy fruits, for Huxley to dig in his sandbox again, for cocktails at sunset on the pergola, and for conversing with soil and seeds once more. Spring is coming. Really started to feel it this weekend.
  • Scotch eggs of supreme deliciousness can be had on the regular at @kingjamesavl. @glennbenglish and I savored these beauties today alongside dirty rice fritters, gumbo with poutine, and @sunbursttrout smoked trout dip, all wonderful. There was also a pint of Appalachian Brewery porter that I have to have more of. Oh, and old school White Stripes on rotation. Great food, great atmosphere.
  • Confession: until last night, I had never had honest to goodness snow cream. @glennbenglish whipped up a tasty batch with vanilla and nutmeg, and we enjoyed it alongside @oldworldlevain's heavenly frangipane tartlettes with fresh cranberries, orange peel, and cinnamon. Snow-pretty AND tasty.
  • Scattered, smothered, and covered. Snowy day in the cove!
  • We three Englishes do so very much love snow. Forecast to receive between 3-6 inches tonight! @glennbenglish captured Huxley and I taking in the view on his way back to the house after locking up the chickens.
  • Woke up to overnight snowfall, always a treat. Then heard from my neighbor Lynn, a licensed massage & bodywork therapist, that the snow was preventing her from getting in to her clients in town and, as a result, she had an opening in her schedule and could give me a massage. Whenever she travels, I pet-sit her cat Sophie, and in exchange she trades me a massage. Not only is she a seriously stellar masseuse, she also is an aromatherapist, a Jin Shin Jyutsu practitioner (a kind of Japanese acupressure technique), and is certified in neuromuscular therapy. So when I get a massage from her, I receive this healing trifecta involving scent, body, and spirit. Plus, in all honesty, I feel like this woman is actually imbuing my body with love when she works on me. I left her house feeling light and bright, and nourished. She has offices in Asheville and Johnson City, TN (the home massages are reserved for family and neighbors!). If you're looking for a rich, wonderful, deeply healing massage, please consider Lynn. You can find her information at www.lynnbernatsky.com. || I passed our bamboo grove and its tiny creek on my walk over to Lynn and Steve's; it somehow spoke to me of good things in store.
  • Woke up to this view. Some kind of wonderful!
  • Spotted Quench in the wild today.Always a thrill to see my books out in the big world, and rubbing elbows with friends @thejoyofcooking, no less!
  • Good day to be in western NC. View of Mt.  Pisgah from the top of our road.
  • You will not pass! || Our shorty with his soul sister Raeglan, adventuring in our woods two days ago. @thebriere4
  • Batman Begins. You ought to hear his 4 year-old take on Batman's gravelly, husky whisper.
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Gifts Gone “Wild”

Last week I received an e-mail from Susan over at BlaBla Kids, saying she’d love to send Huxley a gift. I was unfamiliar with the brand, so I took a minute to check out their website. I’ve been contacted many times in the past by companies interested in sending me their products, and, typically, I thank them for their interest and politely turn them down. BlaBla was an exception, however, and one I’m willing to make for any small enterprise working towards ethical production of goods that resonates with me.


Based out of Atlanta, BlaBla’s entire collection, including those adorable dolls (named “Bandit”-the raccoon-”McNuttie”-the squirrel-and “Wink”-the owl), is designed by Florence Wetterwald and handcrafted by Peruvian artisans using cotton and other fibers grown in Peru. Florence and her staff maintain a close relationship with their Peruvian production team, ensuring each other’s mutual satisfaction and continued ethical livelihood.

As you can see from their site, BlaBla’s products are creative, colorful, whimsical, playful, and very well made. Naturally, it was impossible for me to choose anything, so I wrote back, thanking them for their generous offer and simply mentioning that Huxley’s nursery had a “Forest” theme, to reflect the setting of our home (as well as his middle name, “Wild”, which, friends, let me tell you, he is; oh is he EVER! He already literally “ROARS!!!” to get our attention). I hardly expected the immensely generous package of goodies that arrived yesterday. Along with the dolls, Susan set the hat and booties Huxley is wearing above, as well as the adorable sweater and pants, which he’ll fit into around 12 months of age (next October; the timing is perfect for such an outfit!).

Thank you Susan, Florence, and everyone at BlaBla. I am beyond appreciative for the items you sent Huxley. Furthermore, I’m so very grateful for businesses such as yours, working towards offering ethical, fulfilling livelihoods for all of those involved in the items you offer. It’s a business model to be both lauded and emulated.

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