Simplicity is my favorite word. There are many wonderful words but, if you were to ask me my favorite I would answer simplicity.
When my stress level is high, and life feels uncertain, I start physical projects. In January, I began painting our house shades of white . I have continued on during the pandemic. I finished the kitchen, mudroom, den, hallway, bathroom and even the basement stairwell. My husband Dan polished all of the brass door knobs. It feels so much better. I have decluttered along the way. I am working on keeping what is functional and what I love.
I am now working out in the garden. I planted lettuce, arugula, spinach, tomatoes, cucumbers and wildflowers. Today, I am heading out to plant potatoes. I don’t get a lot of sun in the back yard, so I ordered fabric grow bags. I have a walkway alongside the garage that gets all day sun. It is my new garden. So exciting!
I watched a Master Class with gangsta gardener Ron Finley. He plants sweet potatoes in coffee bean bags. I called Booskerdoo in Asbury Park and picked up a few jute coffee bean bags for myself and two of my gardening friends. I am waiting for my sweet potatoes to grow slips so I can plant them. I will keep you posted! Today, I planted potatoes in the coffee bean bags. I couldn’t wait for the sweet potato slips. I will find another place for them.
I also bought Alice Waters My Pantry after watching her Master Class. I loved her class. She inspires you to cook fresh whole organic in season food from your local farmer, or just grow your own. Plant potatoes into a coffee bean bag and wait for the magic to happen.
“Homemade Ingredients That Make Simple Meals Your Own.”
Thanks for reading.
I have been focusing on ways to reduce my plastic consumption and food waste. I have been so inspired by the Dutch Hill Homestead. They are all about zero waste. They make as many products from scratch as possible, and feed any leftovers to the chickens and goats. I don’t have chickens or goats, so I put my food scraps into the compost bin.
I am all about keeping things easy. I don’t like to fuss or spend hours in the kitchen. I looked at what I buy on a regular basis and investigated how to make them from scratch. Once you have the process down it is easy. My son Tom loves mayonnaise. He will eat it straight from the jar. This morning I made homemade mayo. It was so easy and I used a cute little ball jar.
1/2 cup Organic Avocado oil
1 egg from farmer’s market.
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard.
1 tsp fresh squeezed lemon juice.
Put all of the ingredients right in the ball jar. Get out the blender stick and blend for about 20 seconds. To tell you the truth, I didn’t measure and it came out just fine. I only make a small amount that I can use within a few days.
I also started making cashew milk, cashew yogurt, and almond milk. I hesitated with the almond milk because you need to strain it. I bought a nut bag and it is super easy. It strains the milk to remove the pulp. I can use the leftover pulp to make fat balls. I am feeling very efficient!
The last thing I have been doing is making bone broth. I buy an organic chicken I put the chicken in a covered pot full of water, bring the water to a boil and then simmer for about 90 minutes. I make pulled chicken from the meat, dividing it up into 4 oz portions in cute ball jars. It makes an easy grab and go lunch. I then put the stock, the bones and vegetables into the crock pot on low for 24 hours to make delicious bone broth.
Everything tastes so much better when made from scratch with the best possible ingredients. Reducing plastic consumption and food waste is good for your health, our planet and your pocketbook.
I hope this inspires you to get out the blender stick and whip up some homemade mayo! Let me know. I would love to hear from you.
Slow down and take time for creativity. I really enjoy it when I take time for creativity. I love it when I take the extra steps to make something special. It creates coziness in my life. Last weekend, I replaced an old worn cushion cover on an outside antique wicker chair. I was thinking I don’t have time, but I can make time. It took me a few hours but I did it. I was then motivated to sweep the porch off. Next, I added some extra greens and dried hydrangea from my garden to the generic wreath hanging on the door. Now, every time I come into my house it makes me happy.
Trust in my own decisions. I am recovering my dining room chairs. I found two fabulous grain cloth fabrics on Etsy. Now, I need to decide which one to use. Either one will work. So, what do I do?? I text a friend and say what do you think? She said give it the weekend and pick the one I like best. She knows me too well! So much harder for me but of course it is the right answer!
Organize. This is huge for me. Last Sunday, I got up, cleaned the refrigerator, wrote out the dinners I wanted to make for the week, and made a shopping list. I actually stuck to the meal plan each night this week. It has been so freeing. I know what I am making and I have the ingredients! I have leftovers that I put in ball jars for lunches. It is so efficient and calming. Next step is to organize other areas of my life. What if I made a to do list for my business? I am sure successful entrepreneurs have a plan written out not just ideas in their head.
Meditation. I am always saying I am going to meditate. I am getting better at being consistent with this, and I am beginning to feel a difference in my body. It is very grounding. 20 minutes meditation daily is a wonderful intention for December. Take time to get quiet.
Eat Well. Stay off the grains and sugar. This no longer feels like deprivation, which is a miracle. That is a whole other blog post. I set the intention not to have dessert and it works. December is a time of celebration and I can enjoy without going crazy eating treats that I don’t really want.
Exercise. I exercise. I teach OutdoorFit 5 times a week. It is also important for me to walk daily. George the dog is in my heart and is with me on my walks.
What changes would you like to make in December? Exercise more, eat well, meditate. If you feel overwhelmed, start small. Focus on one little area and complete a small task. It builds momentum and you will feel like doing more. It will bring peace and joy.
Enjoy the Season, It is the most wonderful time of the year.