We have had some beautiful weather for being outside and just enjoying all that nature has to offer. The chickens have been free ranging. I’ve been free ranging. There have been several cookouts. There have been lots of fun with good people (which has really helped my mental health). And there have been wildflower walks. Or as I like to call them ditch flowers because they are quite literally in the ditch. As you might know I’m trying to learn more about foraging so I think I’ve identified all the flowers in the above pictures. If you discover I’m wrong, please let me know. I’m also researching uses for any or all of the flowers I find. I know I can dry the yarrow and then do things with that. I haven’t been able to find much yarrow, but I think it’s because it’s just now blooming. And with the multi-floral rose, I read you can use the hips so I’ll wait until fall to collect those.
I’ve also got the ingredients for two different types of soap being prepared. I was all set to make two batches today and then I read the ingredients and realized that I needed to do some prep work, some of which takes 2-4 days!! So I think I’ll be able to make the tomato soap today but the rose infused soap will have to wait until later in the week.
Speaking of later in the week, I am preparing for another trip to the City on Tuesday and then we are heading out-of-town for a couple of days starting next Sunday! Since we are on one income now our vacations will be fewer this year. We have this trip coming up as one, then my nephews will visit at the end of July, and then we have a trip scheduled to Cape Cod in October. Being more frugal minded now, traveling places in the ‘off-season’ helps. Although we’ve always loved the Cape in the off-season. It’s more low-key, you get better rates, but things are still open so you can enjoy your visit and still do the things that you can during the season.
Oh! I forgot about the ice cream above. I made saffron-cardamom ice cream for one of the many cookouts we’ve had recently. It is really good but a little goes a long way. I’ve been scooping some on top of my homemade strawberry shortcake and that is just perfect. One small scoop is really all you need. And the recipe doesn’t make much so it’s just about perfect all the way around. It would be a good dessert for one night when we make Indian food as we do on occasion. I see many more homemade ice creams in our future!
And it’s strawberry season! Finally! I must get to the pick-your-own place near us and pick as many berries as I can. Trying to fit it all in is getting harder and harder. Not a bad problem to have. But I need to fill the freezer with locally produced and foraged items. We don’t eat much jam so I think I’ll freeze all the berries. I can always make jam later. I would like to get to the pick-your-own place at least twice before the berries are done. But with the heat wave we are starting to experience, it won’t be long before they’re done, I’m sure. Tomorrow must be the day I get up there and pick.
I’ve been trying to find ways to inspire myself to not get in a funk and to actually do things so I started re-reading one of my favorite blogs. I’ve followed this blog, Milkweed & Teasel, for many years and only recently started commenting on the blog. I actually emailed the blog owner, Jennifer, and she was very nice and responsive. If you take a look at her blog, you’ll realize that she is a very busy person. Her and her husband live on an estate in England where he is head game keeper. There is a lot that goes into that job. And I find a lot of inspiration from her and from reading about her life. It motivates me to do things rather than just think about things and wish I was doing them.
I’m off to make soap and to head to the next farm over. Little Lambi is getting sheared today and I’ve never been around when a sheep is being shorn. I think I must fit that in to my schedule. We might do some fishing later too!