Verify

Showing posts with label art. Show all posts
Showing posts with label art. Show all posts

Monday, May 3, 2021

Hanging Strawberry Moss Baskets- Vertical Gardening Technique


Vertical Strawberry Moss Basket
I came up with this idea as I embark on my first season of growing strawberries at home.  I wanted to test out more vertical growing techniques and so, I in turn wanted to have a successful harvest.  Moisture is a big part of that equation and moss is a perfect candidate to help retain a good balance.  I gathered moss in sizable clumps and used it to line the shelves of a shower caddy I purchased specifically for this project, because I wanted it to hang flush against any wall space outside and hang downward, not sprawl across the ground, using vital grow space.  I also wanted to protect it from the animals, so suspending it  seemed like the best method to implement my idea.  
The moss adds a beautiful and organic touch to my hanging basket, which I secure with twine on the backside, enclosing the moss to serve as containers to house the strawberry plants.  The end result is a very cute and functional work of edible art, worthy of sharing and a focal point for a small grow space.  I am excited to see how it progresses and I will certainly keep you posted.  I chose three different types of strawberries, two of which are touted as best for growing when using a hanging basket, Allstar and Quinault, I also use Ozark Beautys.  These are June bearing plants, but do not make a surplus of viney connections, which is not ideal for this type of vertical gardening.  If you have more tips for growing strawberries vertically, myself and other readers would certainly appreciate your feedback.  You may leave comments in the space below and I will also take questions, if you have any about assembling your very own moss 'growing' basket.  Happy Gardening, the sky's the limit, literally!


 


Sunday, May 2, 2021

A 'Moss' Beautiful Gardening Idea



Freshly harvested Moss helped to elevate my planting vessel!
Turn an ordinary, inexpensive and planting suitable vessel into a work of art, with Moss.  I harvested this moss from our church yard, by a prominent tree, near the resting place of one of my little brothers, Keith.  Going to the church is always such a bittersweet destination, Alas, I digress, my Dad and one of my big brothers is there too.  In fact, generations of Smiths and Bergers are.  They are in a better place now and that comforts me, when I miss them sorely and feel despondent.  

I carefully peeled tufts of the softest and most durable sections of the expansive patch for my project.  
The moss is plush and feels like memory foam underfoot and beckons for you to take off your shoes and scrunch your toes in it and feel like a kid again.  Highly resilient and masterful for retaining moisture, moss is a versatile and beautiful plus textured plant, appealing to several senses at once, in a most flattering way.  

With a little creativity, a little moss can go a long way.  Have fun with it and stay tuned to see what I've planted here when it starts to peek above the soil.  The moss used for this featured project, is actually remnants of another project idea, coming up soon, I'm elated with those results as well!

Recipe:

A  plastic container, basket or bowl, with holes preferably

A knife or other sharp object to make small holes for draining 

Fresh moss

Planting soil

Desired suitable plants for vessel

Take a few moments to carefully bore several holes in the bottom of the vessel for draining.

The design will of course vary by container, but for this one, I simply tore off pieces to plug the larger holes on the container, on all four sides.  You want the pieces to fit somewhat snuggly in each of the holes.

Once desired pattern is achieved, carefully fill the vessel with potting soil.  

Plant your desired seeds for your personal needs. 

Enjoy the project and the bounty. 


  

 

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

See and Slay: Bronwyn's Omurice


One of the best things about being in a new kitchen is the possibility of new and fresh recipe ideas that spawn from the environment or chemistry the new locale creates.  Additionally, I like to make the dishes my girls' think up or want on the dinner/meal agenda come to fruition.  Doing this is good culinary exercise and keeps me on my 'game', plus it keeps us from falling into the comfort zone rut of cooking and taking the easy way out, instead of going for elevated and diverse cuisines.  Moreover, it keeps the kids excited about meals that would otherwise go unnoticed. 
This particular day on vacation, Bronwyn mentioned a dish called Omurice. Omurice (pronounced Ahm-Yoo-rice) is traditionally fried rice, usually with chicken,  wrapped in an omelette.  I was oblivious initially about what that was, Bronwyn graciously ushered my phone from my hands and pulled it up on Google.  I was immediately intrigued once I began my research, finding its origin and ingredient call, the proper technique and the variations, then looking to put my spin on it, but keeping it true to its form.  I am an avid fan of Japanese cuisine as well as many other Asian countries and regions.  In fact, my cooking style is best described in large part, as a fusion between Southern American and Pan Asian cuisine respectively. 
Omurice was invented in the early 80's as a way to combine Japanese cuisine with our Western Culture. The other way this is served is quite an art.  The fluffy egg is placed atop the rice and a slit is made down the length of the cloud-like, custardy deliciousness and you can watch it cascade down its sides for a most glorious presentation.  I haven't tried this yet, but soon will.


I named this dish after Bronwyn for her admiration and respect of Japanese culture and her love of Anime. 

Recipe: 
2 cups cooked yellow rice or other cooked rice of choice,
using 25 % less water.
In a medium pan, over medium high heat, drizzled with Olive oil and a pat of butter
2 cloves garlic, smashed. Add to oil while heating up and sauté
1 chicken breast, about 4 oz. boneless/skinless, small cubed and SPST, sautéed in olive oil.
Add chicken.  After it is cooked through, browned and no longer pink, about 4 minutes, Add:
1/2 cup Cole slaw mix, classic style 
1/2 c. Romaine greens with carrot  
1/4 c. each fresh parsley and cilantro, rough chopped
2 chopped green onions or to taste, green and white parts
Sauté with chicken for about 2 minutes and remove garlic and chop, put chopped garlic back. 
Add rice.

 

Fold together over medium heat .


Add 2 tbsp. ketchup and 2 tsp. organic, less sodium soy
.  Stir and fold  until combined.  Transfer to a bowl or dish.
 Mix together 1 egg with 1 tbsp. of milk for every  person to be served.  Make one omelet at a time, 
Add 2 tbsp. sharp shredded cheese to one side of omelet and add a portion of the chicken fried rice to the middle and fold each side over the mound in the middle. Shake the omelet down to one side of pan and flip onto plate. Carefully shape into oblong fashion and garnish with ketchup. 



















Saturday, May 30, 2020

Mask On, Mask Off


Virginia has entered into its mandatory masks in public phase and I have found yet another use for some fabulous fabrics I initially bought for sewing sensational Spring inspired napkins and tea towels.
After many tutorials and much reading, I settled on one of the many Youtube videos, that made the most out of my on hand materials. It was a useful guide to executing my own.  
I have been making masks for my family members, starting with my children of course and my mom, who's 80 years young, both in the high risk factor portion of the population, including but not limited to asthma, high blood pressure, diabetes, and myself, bringing a side of RA to the table. 
I've also come up with a hand sanitizer formula including aroma therapy oils, to soothe the drying  and chaffed hands and the mind.  An added plus of aromatherapy oils is that the essential oils have natural antibacterial and antiseptic properties, fortifying the alcohol even more.
 I feel that even if the masks do not eliminate our risks completely, I am proactively taking charge of the practices we can control, alongside limiting travel and large crowds, vigilant and proper hand washing techniques and consistently decontaminating common areas, door knobs and adding a splash of bleach to the dishes water, something I did already. 
 Although this pandemic leaves no one safe, I like to think that 'we'll be alright, some day', a phrase from a gospel hymn, one that brings me solace in a time of such confusion and burgeoning uncertainty.  
When you return home from interacting with the world, the masks can be removed to enjoy some wholesome and delicious home cooked meals with family and snacks, while we play board games or watch Scooby Doo and the gang. 
 Family is at the heart of why we fight and why we keep going.  The fire in our bellies burn to protect the ones we love and compassion to sympathize with the families in areas most and least affected, the prayers we send out at night or the time we take to volunteer or lend a hand where we can does not go unnoticed and for that one should be grateful.  I know I am.  Amen.

Before I Go...

This is LeMon Grey, I like to call him Kibbeh. He looks like a panda bear in this photo of him chewing on his favorite, sticks!  He's wearing his hair piece, which he loves to toss about and shake.  He's a doll baby and an endless source of entertainment for our family.  He's not our pup, but we love him just the same.  I hope you were able to take a moment to smile and take it easy like this guy, until next time...

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Frico Egg Art


How about something to get your kids engaged, that's easy to do, plus fills their bellies at the same time.  Enter this quick, simple and delicious two ingredient recipe.  Frico is a style that hails from North Eastern Italy and it involves heating cheese and sometimes adding other ingredients, this time it's a sliced boiled egg, but you can also use cooked slices of potato, peppers, mushrooms etc.. Execution is a breeze and you can exercise your creative muscles to make designs using your choice of ingredients.  Save the egg salad for later!

Recipe:

Grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese or other hard cheese
Sliced boiled eggs
large nonstick saute pan
Spatula
SPST

Directions:
Over medium high heat, place about 1 oz. of cheese.
Once cheese starts to melt, reduce heat to medium and arrange eggs in a pattern.
Place another scant pinch of cheese onto center of frico.
Use a spatula to help frico keep its shape around the edges.
Remove from heat and wait about 1 minute.
Invert onto plate to show design and serve or place on buttered  or toasted bread.


I want to wish my first born daughter Genesis, a very Happy 14th Birthday Today,
Hope Your Day is Filled with Memorable Blessings!!!
Love, Mom, Bronwyn, Braelyn ( The Bees), Gram. 

If you would like this recipe and future posts delivered right to your mailbox, simply join us by adding your email in the subscription section at the top of the web version!  Thanks in Advance.

Best,
D. Smith :)
Featured Author
Featured Author
Smokinhotchef
Smokinhotchef
view my recipes
Featured Author