Hello & happy Monday! If your weekend was anything like ours, you may find yourself wanting to escape to the yard for a little quiet time after work this evening. In case, like me, you don’t get that chance, here are a few pics I snapped on Saturday morning around Rivermont. We have so many things popping up and blooming! One of my very favorite things about the past few months has been discovering what Nancy planted around the yard. Apparently she had quite an affection for the space.
We saw Rivermont for the first time in the waning weeks of March last year. But, to be honest, we were both so overwhelmed by the house itself and that feeling you get when you just know something is meant to be, that it’s hard to remember any of the details about the yard. It’s been fun each season to see what’s come back to life!
One of the 4 varieties of purple flowers I found popping up this weekend. I’m hoping that this lovely plant can replace the copious amounts of monkey grass currently acting as ground cover on our side garden. Fingers crossed!
Click here to see this same tree last Fall.
The plant type is a mystery to me, but they look ever so elegant.
The bark of the hackberry tree looks like a topographic map at close inspection.
I was lamenting our lack of forsythia the day this guy popped at the corner of our lot. Score!
Ladies & gentlemen, it’s officially that time of year. Some would argue it’s just as magical as the first crisp wind of autumn or the first snow of winter: Strawberry Season.
Yesterday, our first CSA basket of the season really delivered. 3 containers of these bright red beauties! Every year at this time, I think back to the Spring I learned to make strawberry jam. There’s something almost sacred in the practice. So today, a little haiku…
As of this week, it is officially foodie season at our house. Locally grown veggies are popping up in all the stores, the farmers’ markets kicked off last weekend, and Monday begins our CSA. */cue cheers & applause/*So today I thought I’d share a new favorite crunchy snack with you.
Husband first had this in Brooklyn with the in-laws and I also recently found it in a couple cookbooks (including my absolute fav). I know it seems too simple, but it is just the right thing to munch on as you grill (like we did last night) or to satisfy a salty craving. We were joking that it’s sort of like eating popcorn but it’s so much more satisfying.
All you’ll need:
1 pad each of unsalted butter
about 1/2 tsp good sea salt
That’s it! Put a little bit of butter on your radish and dip it in just a touch of the salt. Bon appétit!
Every year, at about this time, I spring-ify our car. In the winter, most people will make sure the ice-scraper is in the door and maybe add a blanket and some kitty litter if they’re up north. (A trick I learned from That 70s Show–not something we have to teach our young ‘uns in the South.) But in April, I like to be sure we’re prepared for all of our favorite warm weather activities. So here is a little guide to help you Spring-ify your ride.
2. Guide books. Regardless of where you are, you can find a guide book with short little walks or hikes around your area. We picked the one pictured above up at a thrift store last week. If you aren’t lucky enough to live in a national park, perhaps consider exploring your area. My friend the Madcap Heiress has been exploring her work neighborhood (Midtown East in NYC) this week and sharing what she finds on Instagram.
4. Recycled Sari Bags. My mom bought me my first sari bag, and I am now a devotee. They are *ah-mazing!* Made from beautiful recycled saris, these bags are surprisingly strong and fold up into themselves. The small pouch is so easy to throw in your purse. Then, when you see a farm stand on the side of the road, you can stop and fill up your own shopping bag! The best part? The ones I’ve seen are fair trade and made by coops of women in India so you’re also supporting business women around the world!
5. A pretty quilt. You never know when you’ll want to have an impromptu picnic. In the words of the scouts: Always Be Prepared. I’ve tried wool blankets and those fancy roll-up picnic blankets with the waterproof bottom, but I always go back to our trusty old quilts. They’re just so soft and easy to shake off.
6. A little cash. The odds are that cute a-frame ice cream shop that’s on your way to the mountains has neither a credit card machine nor a Square.
7. Shoes you can get dirty. Throw in a pair of old tennies or invest in a nice pair of outdoors-y shoes. This pair of Keens will probably be my next purchase because they’re equally suitable for walking in the woods or through a river.
I’m currently missing our weekend view (seen above) from the hammock. This weekend, we got away to the mountains. It was blissful. The trees are in full bloom. The birds’ chorus was both beautiful and incessant. And, hopefully, the river is starting to warm up a bit–we saw a few kayaks out but weren’t game enough to jump in ourselves. Soon.
Springtime is the season of rebirth, new projects, and, naturally, a little chaos. Springtime is soooo here! We are in the middle of launching a new project at work, Husband and I are working hard on a new project that we’ll share on the blog this summer, and I’m so tired of being indoors, I could burst. So today, I thought I would share some of the bookmarks that have been building up since I skipped the TGIF! post last week. So… here are some fun things from around the interwebs to distract you from the Wednesday slump. Enjoy!
It is only appropriate that after a week of encouraging you to buy art, we bought some on Friday! Our local chapter of the AIGA held a benefit to support local school art programs and had a silent auction for art that the kids had made as well as other (grown-up) artists. We bought the piece above by Will Gay. I’ve admired his work for awhile. Will is Creative Director at Disney’s Yellow Shoes, and this particular print is from the 2012 Festival of Masters at Downtown Disney.
True Story: The first Mother’s Day lunch in our new house, I’d set a beautiful table and was so excited to add a bouquet of fresh-cut peonies from the backyard to the centerpiece. Then, about halfway through the salad course, we noticed a mass exodus of ants from the flowers that were scattering all across the table. Trust me, sharing your luncheon with ants is not nearly as adorable as cartoons would lead you to believe!
As it turns out, ants are attracted to a sweet juice found in those round peony buds right before they open. So if you’re going to bring the flowers inside, remember to get the ants out of the center first! Here’s how…
Fill a large bowl with water and plunge the flowers in bud first. Soak the flowers for about 5 minutes. This will force the ants out.
After 5 minutes, just give the flowers a gentle shake and flick off any ants you see. Then, they’re ready to display.
This weekend, Springtime was in full force here in Easts Tennessee. We spent Friday night and Saturday downtown for the Rhythm & Blooms Festival. The weather was a bit iffy, but armed with Bean boots, coffee, good music, and better friends we had a lovely time.