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"Where better to care for the soul than in the details of our daily lives?....The soul has an absolute, unforgiving need for regular excursions into enchantment. It requires them like the body needs food and the mind needs thought... An enchanted world is one that speaks to the soul, to the mysterious depths of the heart and imagination where we find value, love and union with the world around us. As mystics of many religions have taught, that sense of rapturous union can give a sense of fulfillment that makes life purposeful and vibrant." ~ Thomas Moore.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Provencal Salad

Hello Everyone,

I am still slowly recovering from March Madddnnesssss......I am hearing from almost everyone, how difficult it was with so many of the deepest kind of challenges.
I have a suspicion I have a minute of respite here so I am stealing time to make this post.
Soon I will be able to move back into my bedroom.
I picked up a piece of furniture from IKEA yesterday because I found nothing else anywhere and I got tired of looking for something with ''just so'' dimensions. This one particular situation {of several}  I am talking about has been with termites, unparalleled tiny terminators which I didn't know could cause so much damage or STRESS, especially with me when I am watching my furniture, floor and sauna being turned into paper because they were eating away at them.
But we insisted on Natural as the fumigation tenting procedure is NOT what I wanted to do as it would kill everything Green I have been growing including on the entire house itself like Mr. Repens,  and the termite guys were all loathe to see this garden and the Ficus Repens on the house be destroyed and didn't want us to go that route either....not to mention the expense of removing all your foods and having to sleep in a hotel for days etc......what a horrid mess and expensive unnecessary process.
We went with a natural remedy called Timbor because the man who chose this product had a father who used the fumigation chemicals and tenting and after so many years of handling these chemicals he became a vegetable and the son had to care for him out of a wheelchair in his final the son, now elderly himself, choose a natural product which is used extensively in California because they are more GREEN in mind and body there than the east coast here, and this man has had success with using this product for over 50 years now.
 After having the house treated I can say so far I have not seen those horrid little piles of wood pellets on my floor or sauna. My sauna is very important to me, it is a far infra red sauna and it saved my life from chemicals including mercury. It is incredibly beneficial to my health and I feel so good and clean inside and out when I use it and I didn't want to let it go. They said time will tell but it looks good.
Soooooo, in my bedroom I had to get rid of a piece of furniture I had that was made of bamboo and a basket that was holding my CD's.....because they were harboring the tiny terminators too. But I did find a nice piece of white furniture which THANK  GOD  I  DO  NOT  HAVE  TO  PAINT  BECAUSE  IT  IS  ALREADY  WHITE !!!
I cannot tell you how much I am relieved of not having to paint, as if any of you know, I have been painting this entire house inside and out and I am sooooo over it fixed for life now, so no painting for me anymore.
Now I just have to wait for John to put it together for me. It is a nice bookshelf with doors from top to bottom, but the top half is glass and the bottom half of the doors are solid so you only see the inside from the top. I need the private storage and with the glass I can have some nice shelf space to display things nicely which I am actually finding I am in enough of a calm place now to entertain with a small degree of fun-ness as to how to do this.....almost feeling playful which tells me I may not be so damaged after all.
Will take pics of that and post soon.

But this post again, is about a beautiful fun Provencal Salad which I wondered about one day, googled and made the next :D, and it was delicious and I encourage anyone to make it if you so desire as it is both delicious and very healthy complete with all necessary nutrients.
I do not know how "authentic" it is, and I do not much care but it is quite good.

I started off in my Garden which is quite a pleasure now since everything is doing so well, and I have lots of I picked out some fresh lettuce, plenty of herbs, arugula, and mustard which came back from last year to my great joy.....I simply cut off all the leaves, some were good, some not, and it started to come back and grew large and healthy again.....I can do this with quite a number of greens it turns out.

I put on 4 eggs to hardboil and as they cooked I picked out the greens

sorry pics are bad, but I believe you get the idea anyway :D  these are radicchio and lettuces

 radiccio coming along, I love how they grow in the center in spirals with deep red veins..



a great variety in a bowl that was way too small for all I picked :D

a humongous mustard leaf.....I find it interesting that the first generation of these greens didn't taste much like mustard but this second generation definitely tastes like mustard and are so wonderful in sandwiches.


  tore the greens into small pieces and put everything in a large bowl.
 added olives and sliced onions and walnuts, you can do whatever you like, I used what I had


  When the eggs were cool I cut them into quarters and added them

  and then the beautiful dressing which I got from this site.

~ Classic Provencal Dressings by Wolfgang Puck

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
2 tablespoon s garlic, minced
2 tablespoon  shallots, minced
1 1/2 cup s extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt
Fresh ground white pepper
Sugar, pinch

Pour into a nice cruet......

*Update: I DID just make this again, and I revised a few things in this dressing. I personally just use a teaspoon of garlic and a teaspoon of Raspberry Vinegar and mustard, not as much as he does.....I prefer the flavor of mustard and lemon and no sugar...this recipe is merely a guideline for your preferences in my opinion.  Serve yourself the amount of salad you want and add the dressing from cruet. Last time I poured over the entire salad but if you don't eat it all, it will get soggy. .......toss gently and enjoy!
I enjoyed it very much for two days, and after typing this all out am wanting it again, so I am now going to eat!

Stay Calm and Keep Gardening.

Sharing this post with Rooted In Thyme
and with The Charm of Home

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Moss, Rose and Candle Chandelier and Flowers

 Hello Beautiful Ladies of Bloglandia

Did anyone else experience the Madness of March? There is alot going on around the net about how absolutely insane it was, and I can vouch for that personally.

But today is about my lovely little project the Moss, Rose and Candle Chandelier which I finally did today.   I am going to try to blog on John's laptop .....since my PC crashed.....lets see if it works out.
About this project what took me so long was to decide.....deciding whether to make it real, living..... or not real........obviously I wanted it as real as it gets, but if it is real it will only last a few days, and I KNEW I could not settle for this beauty being around only for a few days, as I've been in love with it for a year now and finally decided to make it manifest. The difficult decision was made.....I wanted it to last, so alas, it had to be fake. I don't like fake.....really dont.....however, some things will simply have to be accepted. I went to Michaels for the fakes......ugh. :D

{ As an aside, I just took another bite of my Provencal Salad.....I never knew what that word "Provencal" meant until just days ago when I came across it and finally decided to see what it meant, in cuisine terms, and turns out it is quite a French/Mediterranean style of food and.....lo and is the very descriptive of the style of foods both myself and my housemate happen to cook and enjoy best! Go figure  :D  :D  that French thing again.....I was fascinated by this as I had no idea our style of cuisine had a name, but it does and we ''fit the profile'' about 95% so I say, its a good fit.  The first website I hit on had a good description of the ingredients of this Provencal style of cuisine and a wonderful picture of a salad which I then had to do the next day and I'm glad I did....and this wonderful salad is what I just took a bite of and will make a post on that soon.....ish.  Oh god sooo goooood. }

But here is my project finished....but wait, I should show the befores first right?....ok here are lots of pics.....

ok, one of the last areas needing some love and beauty was under the Gazebo. The Gazebo itself is adorable and I love it but it is not inviting, merely a place for the housemate John, to sit and smoke his cigars after work. I can never sit outside anymore actually because of the planes flying overhead. On gorgeous days the planes are like every 30 seconds, literally, and it is impossible. I wondered why I never fixed that up earlier, but there you go.
I did it now because I do want to spend time out there but it will probably be at night when the planes stop, and I did just a few things.

This is before.....we keep straw as the ground cover to prevent weeds and always have something soft for bare wonderfully. I did not like these chairs and I found 2 new is much nicer here now. :D

The table I picked up from  just a few doors down, it looked like the one from Pottery Barn       and maybe it was, but it was outside too long and got mold, but I thought no problem, I can get rid of that. I used sand  paper, bleach etc, scrubbing, leaving in the sun and nothing would take it out.  After a year I decided then to paint it and I had a can of French Linen Chalk Paint and that got 2 coats, and now it looks quite lovely! Underneath it is as clean as is possible, and now painted. However I need to keep it covered with fabric and I decided upon the drop cloths which are very sturdy and a natural fiber, so I got one and that went on top. On top of that I layered an old tablecloth I picked up many years ago at a French Flea Market of all things, which I had been to only once, and this little table cloth is a French one.
 I really had an entirely different vision for the finished table, but I had to do what I had to do.
I had a whole bunch of orchids which needed a place since I had finally repotted all of them and the perfect place was under the instead of urn planters filled with hydrangeas like I wanted, it had to have the orchids.

But here is my version of the Moss Rose and Candle Chandelier which I fell in love with....this one in no way has the same Old World feel the inspiration does,  but I had to try it.

I  hung an old Batik Javanese tablecloth on the screen because the sunset hits John's face too rudely, so now its blocked off.

This is the inspiration:

I wish I had more ivy, but fake flowers are not cheap either, so I settled. I can always add later.

Some more pics and then I have some flowers for this week.....


The old white papasan chair is in front of the table, almost ready for me to lounge in and get lost for hours in the magic of the summer pond.........

On the way back into the house, a couple of beautiful orchids....


and Fragrant Cattalaya

begonia flowers, white plumbago, hydrangeas, and spray rose.....


Thanks for visiting.....I should be doing a post next on my Provencal Salad. yum!

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and with Rooted In Thyme
and with The Charm of Home
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