Thank you to Greta for this great site where I have found something that I think my dear friend, Teresa will want to bake for her Southern family! Check out this Pecan Pie recipe from



Feeling Crummy

December 10, 2010

Some of my friends are feeling crummy; sore throat or body aches, chills-  Well, it is cold/virus season, the weather is freeeeezing here in Connecticut, and it is easy to get run down. It’s a stressful time of year physically and emotionally and we need to take care of ourselves. When the sun sets so early, I just want to put on my pajamas and snuggle down with a book. It’s dark and cold and I wish I could just hybernate but I’ve had to do a lot of running around and now I’m feeling crummy, too. I really don’t want to get sick because then my good friend, Teresa won’t want to come over for tea.

So, I have boiled up one of my favorite and yummy natural home remedies.

Elderberry Tea

Loaded with antioxidant quercetin, elderberry has antihistamine and anti-inflammatory properties.

You can find elderberry in jams, teas and black elderberry syrup. It’s sweet and great for sick children (and grownups, too). Take 1 to 2 teaspoons four times a day for three to four days when feeling sick. Sipping elderberry tea can also soothe flu symptoms. From

Also, from

“The tea is made from the dried flowers of the plant. To brew tea you need about 5 grams (2/10 of an ounce) of dried flowers per cup of water. The flowers should be steeped in boiling water for at least 10, and preferably 15, minutes. Unless you don’t mind flower petals between your teeth, the liquid should be strained before consuming, or simply place the petals in a tea strainer. If you pick your own flowers, do so when they are in full bloom, and let them dry in the sun. They will store well in an airtight bag or other airtight container. Some elderberry tea drinkers like to mix it with peppermint tea. Otherwise you can add honey or lemon to taste.”

I like to boil the dried berries: 1/2 cup berries boiled with some ginger in 6 cups of water for 20 minutes. Sweeten to taste. YUM!

Next summer I will have my own Elderberries to pick. And, as my kids say: BOOM!

T and me in our new aprons.

I choose a what I believe is a healthy lifestyle. According to some people there is not enough scientific proof that clean air, pure water, good quality sleep, simple, unadulterated, natural food is a better, healthier way to live. I operate from common sense. It makes sense to me to take care of myself by exercising, choosing organic foods. I don’t need a study to tell me that I feel good after a walk in the woods or good night’s sleep or a yoga class or  miso soup and brown rice. I also don’t need to argue about it with anyone. I like my life. There are others who feel the same way. There are many looking for this way.

Perhaps there are not enough independent scientific studies proving that EMF’s from wifi, cellphones and cordless phones are hazardous to my health. Never before have people lived in environments so laden with EMF Pollution. Scientists claim the true health hazards of EMF Pollution will not be known until the current youth reproduces, as EMF Pollution has been known in scientific studies to permanently damage DNA and cause birth defects as well as miscarriages. I’m not interested in waiting for the results.

I have lived most of my life walking to a different drummer than most. It’s a groovy rhythm.

This is yummy, healthy comfort food, served warm on a cold winter night. Traditionally it is made with milk and sugar,  however, it is very easy to make with non-dairy and non-sugar ingredients and just as yummy. My friend Teresa liked my tapioca dessert so much last night she had more with her breakfast this morning.

Tapioca is made from the starch from the cassava tuber. It is made into flour as well as pellets and pearls. It’s light and fluffy made with eggs, but I am working on my recipe without eggs – stay posted. The flavor of tapioca is fairly neutral, making it an excellent choice of thickener for both sweet and savory style foods. Tapioca also has little nutritional value- so the nourishment is from coconut milk and eggs in this recipe.

1/3 cup Small Tapioca Pearls (I used Bob’s Red Mill for this recipe)

1 cup water

2 cups coconut milk (lite or regular)

pinch seasalt

2 organic eggs separated

½ cup water (keep handy in case it gets too thick)

1/3  cup maple syrup or agave syrup

½ t Vanilla Extract (I use Frontier, organic made with glycerine, no alcohol)

Soak the pearls in water for 15-20 minutes in a saucepan.

Beat yolks into coconut milk with pinch of salt, stir into saucepan with soaked pearls. Cook on medium heat until it comes to a boil and lower heat (use a flame tamer if you have one) and simmer, stirring often. You wouldn’t want to burn this yummy dessert.

Meanwhile, beat egg whites with agave or maple syrup. If you can get the whites to peak, great, other wise, gently fold into tapioca and stir for 3 minutes.

Let cool for 10-15 minutes and add vanilla.

Optional: add fresh fruit on top or mix in, serve warm or cold

It’s Time to Plant Garlic

October 11, 2009

Picture 1

It is time to plant garlic for next July’s harvest right around now- mid- to late October. Today was a sunny and mild day and I decided this would be the day. Last year I planted in the freezing cold and did not want to repeat that scene. I don’t know what varieties I planted, though. A few different kinds but I’ll be guessing next summer- by the shape, color and taste.

Garlic is planted at  5 inches deep and 4 inches apart. When the ground starts to freeze in November I’ll mulch the bed with hay and also some compost to nourish the cloves through the winter. The sprouts will be among the first green to poke out next Spring and I am excited that the cloves are now in the ground.

Meanwhile, deer broke into my garden last night and ate carrot tops, all the beans and the bean leaves off the vines and some kale. I don’t know how they jumped the 7 foot fence, but I tightened the netting up again. Teresa suggested I put on a net roof, too. Will be up early to check, tomorrow.

Recipes for Muffins

August 15, 2009


My friend Teresa makes delicious gluten free muffins and recently she made some for Bill’s birthday. People raved about them and asked for the recipe and she wouldn’t divulge it because she is thinking about going into business making yummy cupcakes. I think she is afraid no one will buy her scrumptious desserts and they will make their own. I don’t think so….Most people are too lazy to make cupcakes and they will most definitely buy T’s.  Sharing healthy and yummy recipes is crucial to world peace; happy healthy world = peaceful world. So for those of you who would like to take the time to make some healthy, gluten free cupcakes, try this recipe adapted from Nance Petit:

Millet Gluten Free Muffins

1/2 cup rice flour, ½ cup fava or garbanzo  flour, 1-cup millet flour, ½ cup quinoa or amaranth flour, 1/3 cup whole millet

OR: a bit more than 2 1/2 cups all purpose gluten free flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1  1/4 cup rice, soy or almond milk

1 egg, lightly beaten

1/2 cup vegetable oil- grapeseed works well

1/2 cup honey, rice syrup or agave

1 teas xanthum gum

OPTIONAL: blueberries, chocolate chips, banana slices about 1/2 cup


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease 16 muffin cups.

In a large bowl, mix the  flours, baking powder, baking soda, xanthum gum and salt, add berries or chips now, too. In a separate bowl, mix the liquid with  egg, vegetable oil and sweetener. Stir liquid mixture into the flour mixture just until evenly moist. Transfer batter to the prepared muffin cups. They will be very thick but ended up light and fluffy.

Bake 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.

Lemon Cucumbers

June 7, 2009


Just planted one Lemon Cucumber plant. I know very little about them but thought it would be interesting to try them out. From what I have read they are round, yellow can be the size of a baseball. Some people like to pick them when they are still green, others wait till they are larger, some like them when they are the size of a lemon…that makes sense to me. The are sweeter than regular cukes, pickle well and have a tendency to be prolific. Teresa will have a big share of these this summer.


Anyone have more experiences to share on this?


Great article at about gardening in a small space. I’ve been envious of Barbara’s large field of endless beds- well now I feel better about intensifying my garden beds-and a wonderful video on how to grow a garden in a container- watch this Teresa!!!  Let’s do some gardening on your deck this summer! 

Hat tip: Guy Kawasaki

Safe Cosmetics

September 13, 2008

Many of us are becoming more conscious about the quality of what we put on our skin. Our skin absorbs anything on it and transfers into our bloodstream. I recently reread the ingredients of my most favorite sunscreen lip gloss and gasped when I discovered “oxybenzone” as one of the ingredients. Oxybenzone has not been tested since the ‘70’s by the FDA and now is know to be a carcinogen…damaging DNA.  I am switching lip gloss brands! My friend Teresa just sent me this link to Organic Diva cosmetics that have been screened for cancer-causing ingredients.