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El-D took issue with last week’s post in which I highlighted the rationale behind “His & Hers” seedlings.
It seems I got something wrong.
Apparently, this happens a lot.
I confess, not too long ago I wrote about his awesome Amish Friendship Rolls. Afterwards, Dear Readers, I was informed that I had deceived you. Please realize this wasn’t an intentional deceit. He made Amish Friendship Bread the week before the roll incident. I saw warm steam rising from fresh baked goods and I went crazy. In my feeding frenzy I shouted the good news of great joy from my bloggy version of the highest mountain.
Except I shouted it all wrong.
They were yeast rolls people. YEAST ROLLS!
I’m sorry if the error offends your sensibilities.
And here I stand wrong again.
El-D does not, in fact, require “an intricate mix of dirt samples taken from various points in the yard.”
During the chaos of moving somehow this detail managed to escape my radar.
That means that all last summer as I was writing about stuff like the practice of letting go, I had no idea the dirt from my former life had followed me to this one.
When I heard this I had a momentary existential crisis: Is my whole life a lie?
Then after meditating on it awhile I recalled the words of a great yogi:
I have affixed to me the dust and dirt of countless ages…who am I to disturb history?
…and now I’m happily back to everything being right-wrong.
Here’s what was on last week’s menu. You can following the links (in bold) for recipes.
Breakfast: Vanilla yogurt on toffee granola topped with fresh raspberries, and tea. As far as nutrition, we’ve got calcium, fiber, iron and B-12. The raspberries add a little extra fiber, vitamin C and a whole lot of yum.
Lunch: Arugula salad (picked fresh!) with oil and vinegar dressing, flatbread, and an orange.
Dinner: Ok, I admit this is an odd combination — corn chips and guacamole and a side of grilled asparagus.
Breakfast: Vanilla yogurt on toffee granola topped with fresh raspberries, and tea.
Lunch: Annie’s Shells & Cheese with fresh steamed broccoli.
Snack: Rice pudding
Dinner: a 3-ounce fillet of salmon, sauteed squash, and 1/2 an avocado. Yes, I ate fish. This was the main source of my B-12 this week.
Breakfast: Vanilla yogurt on toffee granola topped with fresh raspberries, and tea.
Lunch: Vanilla yogurt on toffee granola topped with fresh raspberries. Again! It’s that good.
Dinner: Eggplant parmesean and a salad.
Dessert: Eggless chocolate cake.
Breakfast: Leftover chocolate cake and tea.
Lunch: Homemade yeast roll drenched in butter and honey. I know — sugar, sugar, sugar!
Dinner: Blackbean tortillas, salsa, cheese dip and salad.
Dessert: Eggless apple cake.
Breakfast: Leftover apple cake.
Lunch: El-D’s amazing vegetable soup with yeast rolls.
Dinner: Sharky’s for El-D’s birthday. I had fried oysters, a bit of fried fish, and edamame and corn succotash.
Breakfast: Vanilla yogurt on toffee granola topped with fresh raspberries.
Lunch: Quinoa and avocado salad.
Dinner: El-D’s amazing vegetable soup.
Breakfast: Yeast roll with butter and honey.
Lunch: Bombay House vegetarian lunch buffet. I treated myself to my comfort food.
Dinner: Mushroom stroganoff and roasted cauliflower.
Breakfast: Peanutbutter on crackers.
Lunch: Popcorn sprinkled with nutritional yeast.
Dinner: Not sure yet.
It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light and winter in the shade.
Today was exactly like that quote from Charles Dickens.
Spring Break was a couple weeks ago. Quite suddenly the frenetic pace in which I have grown accustomed to functioning, came to a screeching halt. Then there was silence and time. I can’t remember when I had such a vast expanse of both.
Last year at this same time I was learning new ways to kneel and kiss the ground even as that ground was spinning away beneath my wheels and shifting beneath my feet. Prayers were being flung to the heavens. Finally, the ground gave way and I poured right through the hourglass into a completely different life. And here I am.
This year I am learning to operate at a slower pace. The curriculum is challenging, but the lessons are definitely worth the while….as well as delicious! El Diablo made these fluffy rolls this week the slow way.
They took *forever.*
Piping hot and drenched with melted butter and maple syrup as they were, I ate entirely too many of them.
Now, raspberry, blueberry, and blackberry bushes are ready to be planted. This season’s new seeds will be planted soon, along with the seeds collected from last year’s garden.
As we are making way for slow food, I’m remembering some of the things I read in Barbara Kingsolver’s memoir Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life about how to rely less on fossil fuels through the food choices we make. So I leave you today with food for thought.
- Americans put almost as much fossil fuel into our refrigerators as our cars.
- The average food item on a U.S. grocery shelf has traveled farther than most families go on their annual vacations…. an average of 1,500 miles….
- If every U.S. citizen ate just one meal a week (any meal) composed of locally and organically raised meats and produce, we would reduce our country’s oil consumption by over 1.1 million barrels of oil every week.
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle
I’m the black sheep vegetarian in a family of meat eaters. It’s a hard job, but somebody has to do it.
This is not a brand new thing. It’s been two years since I converted. Still, when I get invitations to family functions they say things like this:
We’re having a party. I know you don’t eat x or y…or z — good lord aren’t you starving yet?? Well, you can come anyway.
I swear I am not trying to wreck havoc on people’s dinner parties (unlike The Good Greatsby, whose humorous post can be found HERE). I don’t mean to be difficult, but I might be a little complicated. The vegetarian thing is just what makes sense in my heart and in my head. I’ve tried to explain it all, but I obviously haven’t really done a good job of it because just a week ago I was asked (again):
So…I still don’t understand…are you doing this for religious reasons or what?
And then there was there was the following exchange with the Resident Teaologist, who when preparing lunch couldn’t find what she needed:
Resident Teaologist: You said you had arugula, so I didn’t get any at the store, but I don’t see any in the fridge…
Me: That’s because it’s out in the yard.
So we go out to the yard to pick the arugula. She stares at it and says,
It’s so weird that you are about to eat something that was just growing in your ground.
I had to giggle. That this bewilders others bewilders me. How did we ever get so far removed from our food? And what have we lost as a result of this distance? And what exactly have we gained?
Once plants and animals were raised together on the same farm — which therefore neither produced unmanageable surpluses of manure, to be wasted and to pollute the water supply, nor depended on such quantities of commercial fertilizer. The genius of American farm experts is very well demonstrated here: they can take a solution and divide it neatly into two problems.
God made food; the devil cooks.
–James Joyce, Ulysses
The Devil insists his Sin-a-Buns are easy and quick to make. One must wonder why then he started them in the morning and then made me wait ALL DAY (until dinner!) until they were “ready” to eat.
The answer to that mystery is this: because he’s The Devil.
The Devil’s Sin-a-Buns
They are nothing short of amazing.
The Devil builds three-year compost bins from pallets. (There is no rest for the wicked.)
The Devil confers with his minion.
This rascal creates mischief.
Leaves fall all around the “Greek Ruins” ensemble.
Tasty treats are harvested from the garden.
…and there is more still to ripen..
Duck tails waggle.
Sweet wildflowers bloom alongside the mean roses. (One of the mean ones bit me on the thumb several days ago. To quote Charlie’s brother, “…that really hurt…and it’s still hurting.”)
…and we celebrate six years of a little person’s life.
A year and nine months ago I made the switch from omnivore to herbivore. The transition was a grueling process. While I continued to eat milk-based products, I gave up eggs. I learned a lot about food along the way. For example, eggs and other animal byproducts lurk hidden in foods that one would think are entirely non-animal. A case in point: castoreum is an ingredient used in many raspberry and vanilla products. It is made from the oil that beavers produce in their nether regions (i.e., beaver butt juice). This additive may be cleverly disguised as “natural flavors” in the product’s list of ingredients. Not something I wanted to think about when drinking a vanilla crème soda….
It took several months to figure out what to eat and what to avoid. Eventually I managed to get the vegetarian thing on automatic.
Now I’m facing another vertical learning curve with food. A few weeks ago I went to the doctor because of a couple allergic reactions I was having. One reaction was to poison ivy and the other was to “God only knows what,” according to my allergist. He wasn’t too worried about the unidentified allergen because it responded well to Benadryl. However, I found out while I was at the doctor that I’m vitamin B12 and vitamin D deficient. And so the vegetarian saga continues. My doctor prescribed prescription-strength vitamin D and a weekly shot of B12. I’m not crazy about the idea of taking vitamins; I’d rather get my nutrients from the food I eat. And the thought of having to get a weekly shot of a vitamin didn’t work at all in my head.
“Can’t I just go sit in the sun and drink milk?” I whined.
As it turns out, I’d have to drink about four cups of milk a day to get my RDA of B-12. That’s way more milk drinking than I’m willing to do on a daily basis.
I reluctantly agreed to take the vitamin D on a short-term basis, but I said heck no to the weekly B-12 shots. Realistically vitamins, enriched soymilk, and fortified cereal aren’t viable options – I don’t like any of these things well enough to eat them on a regular basis. Red Star Nutritional Yeast – too complicated. I bought some three weeks ago and have yet to use it. I need something motivating that I’ll actually eat. So I’m back to doing food research. It turns out that shellfish are one the best food sources for B12. Three ounces of oysters provide over 1000% DV of B-12. I’ll be adding a smidgeon of oysters to my weekly diet until I can figure out a better solution.
Any vegetarian readers out there who can offer up some ideas? How are you getting your B-12?
You never know what fascinating sights you’ll see when roadtrippin’ through Arkansas. Both the backroads and interstate hold an array of surprises. From I-40 you’ll spy roadkill, rice paddies, and religious signs reminding you to beat the children with a stick.
In Central Arkansas you can hop off the interstate, do a little wine tasting and stock up on your favorite vintage at the wineries.
Wiederkehr Village (population of 42) has more grapes than residents.
At one point in our journey, an emergency coffee attack required a pitstop to a Love’s Travel Shop. As The Devil was pulling in to a parking spot right beside a fella fiddling with stuff under the hood of his SUV, a 96% naked lady jumped out of the backseat of the fella’s vehicle. I was so astounded by the scene that lay before me that I forgot the camera entirely. You’ll have to settle for the picture I paint in words. The 96% naked lady was wearing a little bitty bikini with a tiny see-through crocheted skirt. Her backside was emblazoned with a tattoo of a bull’s head. Its horns rose menacingly out the top of her bikini bottoms. And, she looked ANGRY! She said a buncha words I didn’t understand partly due to the southern twang that shaped them, partly due to the shock of seeing an angry 96% naked lady unexpectedly jump out of a vehicle, and partly due to the music that was blaring from the speakers of their opened door: ”We’re from the country and we like it that way.”
It was all so very much to process.
The man under the hood looked up long enough to glance at her, register us and our agape expressions, and chuckle to himself before returning back to his tinkering. The 96% naked lady walked this way and then that, continuing to make a fuss over something before finally settling back into the backseat and closing the door.
By that time, The Devil had returned and we were on our way.
The backroads and small towns of Arkansas are also great fun. There are interesting places to eat. For example, in Springdale there’s a giant waffle sign in the sky that announces a Waffle Hut. If that doesn’t suit your taste you can try the Mexican-Middle Eastern Restaurant.
Around one bend in the road we spied a natural swimming hole.
Several fireworks stands were set up along the road. One stand had a sign that read “Fireworks. Help Christians Serve.” Another sign said, well, see for yourself…
Good times. I will really miss this state when it’s time to dismantle this particular life.
For more sights and scenes from my Arkansas travels, see: