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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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  • Clowning around. || Huxley tried out Tiny Tots Circus Playtime at Toy Boat Art Collective today and really enjoyed it!
  • Chatting about existentialism, and contradicting ourselves, and winter over on small measure today. || Into the woods behind our house.
  • 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.
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What I’m Digging

Happy Friday friends! Hope your week has gone well. Ours has been characterized by unusually warm weather and a sniffling, sneezing, coughing baby. We’ve been making the most of the balmy days, taking walks down the driveway to the creek that runs alongside our driveway’s entrance and opening up windows in the house during the day (in JANUARY! It boggles the mind…).

As for Huxley, I’ve been giving him this herbal children’s tincture mixed with this cough syrup. I’ve combined those things with hot showers with me during the day (during which I shake some of this along the shower walls for inhalation purposes) and steamy baths at night, after which I rub a little combination of lotion and this balm on his chest and back. Coupled with loads of nasal bulb intervention on his tiny nostrils, it all seems to be helping. I’m also excited to try out this essential oil blend that Katie sent. It smells AMAZING!

Here’s a round-up of tidbits that made me think, made me smile, and made me hungry this week:
*Totally smitten with Camille’s rural northwestern Oregon off-grid homestead.
*Forest gardening has completely captivated me.
*Waste wood into recycled furniture!
*The future of food is a radical one.
*Finally, a way to recycle old gift and credit cards!
*Picked up a box of these biodegradable trash bags (I’ll give a progress report soon).
*The cove really needs a wood-fired hot tub (via here)
*Eat your wild greens!
*Lisa’s farm photos are exquisite.
*Winter citrus is here!
*A thrifty, low-fi means of creating mini-greenhouses outdoors (thanks to Meri for the link!).

The weekend forecast looks pretty nice, so I’m imagining more walks are in store. I’m also plowing my way through a mountain of kumquats, Key limes and Meyer lemons my sisters brought during their recent visit. Nine half-pint jars of my Kumquat 5-Spice Marmalade are done, with many more to come. I think I’ll make some of my Meyer Lemon & Lemon Verbena Curd next (both recipes can be found in my book).

Wherever you go this weekend, whatever you do, may it be grand!


*I can’t get over these constellation jammies Huxley has been sporting. They glow in the dark, lighting up our bed at night like a tiny map of the universe (albeit one punctuated with starry guitars and elephants!). They’re insanely cute and fit really nicely. I highly recommend them, should you encounter a pair (although it looks like only size 3-6 months is available).

3 Responses to What I’m Digging

  • Camille says:

    Thanks for the shout out, Ashley. We also have a wood-fired hottub that is currently out of commission, but I totally love it. You gotta get/make one.

  • KC Pagano says:

    I bought your canning book two years ago. I love it! Ad i just recently found you blog, love it too. I also have an infant with a cold, I'm interested to try out some of your remedies. Have a lovely weekend!

  • Jessica says:

    I look forward to this post every friday! Interesting article on forest gardens.