Redbud Ridge

Just look what welcomed us home from our camping trip.DSC00184

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We enjoy time away, but are always glad to come home, especially when spring has sprung.

I had a lot of pictures and fish stories to tell, so I decided to play with a different blog host/source. I didn’t like it…not as user friendly as WordPress, and you know my limitations. I have seen an increase in demand for camping information, however, so I chose to expand to a second blog on WordPress. If you are a follower who enjoys camping tips and stories, please check out campingcapers.wordpress.com and see if you enjoy it.

Here’s a preview of the tease I left you with a few weeks ago that also welcomed us home.
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I hope to show all the things I made out of that one antique bed in one post soon.

We have needed an address marker in case of a 911 emergency. Now we just need a shrub beside it. Maybe next week…unless we go camping.

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Wild and Wonderful Watercress

We have the best neighbors! They came to play cards last night…bearing gifts. This.DSC00141
Watercress grows wild in spring branches and streams, and its health benefits seem almost as prolific. Just this week I read that it is one of the best alkaline foods to help in leveling out the body’s acidity. For me, it’s the fresh, peppery taste and the childhood memories of accompanying my dad to the spring on our farm to pick an armload; one of the first signs of the spring season.

Watercress is not the least labor intensive veggie, for sure, because it must be plucked from the water, trimmed, washed, and examined carefully. The early, tenderest plants are best and easiest. Later in the season, you need to look carefully for the little critters water bugs and blood suckers, yes, city folk, leaches. Don’t look at me like that. You eat potatoes, don’t you? And just think of all those wiggly worms crawling around under ground with them. And the beetles.
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I trim the thickest stems off, unless I’m going to chop it finely, and drain it in a colander or pat it dry with paper towels.
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Today, I left the pieces mostly intact and added a bit of torn Romaine leaves. A few thin slices of red onion and some sliced strawberries complete this salad. I dressed it with a tablespoon of mayo mixed with a dash of balsamic vinegar, a teaspoon of honey, and some poppy seeds.
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Pretty, fresh, healthy, and delicious.

Of course, this may not be is not necessarily my favorite way to eat watercress. No, think oil fat bacon grease. Yep, that may just negate all that alkalinity factor, but here is the recipe for my favorite watercress dish.
1 bunch- 8 to 10 cups- of watercress (washed, drained and chopped coarsely)
6 slices bacon, fried crisp drained and crumbled (reserve bacon grease)
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1 bunch radishes, sliced thinly
Coarse salt

Chop and mix all veggies. Heat baking grease until the smoke alarm goes off very hot. Pour it over the greens and listen to it sizzle. It should be slightly wilted, but still keep some of its integrity. (I know, all the health nuts are thinking I just lost mine with the bacon grease.) Sprinkle in the crumbled bacon and indulge enjoy.

Watercress is wild and wonderful, healthy or not…the choice is yours.

Waiting for Spring

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Don’t you love it when these little jewels start making their appearances? Spring is gorgeous on Redbud Ridge; second only to fall. I can’t wait to show you all the budding trees as they paint the forlorn landscape with lovely lavender flowers. Right now, the path to the valley is getting ready to turn green.
DSC00130 I thought we might be having a summer wedding, here, but I think our son and his fiance have chosen another venue. That’s probably just as well, because it might be very difficult to ever sell the ridge and move to the lake with all those memories.I can’t wait to see what they have planned. I can’t wait to show you pictures of our first camping/fishing trip in our made-over camping trailer. I can’t wait to dig in the soil and uncover wiggly worms and shoots of young garlic chives. So, that’s what I’m doing. Waiting patiently. Waiting.

And, in the meantime, I have followed a suggestion from here and have done some winter sowing and prepared these mini greenhouses. They are simple to make, just follow the directions at that site.
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Do they really work? Of course. Even for someone who might be is horticulturally challenged. See these little green plants? I only started this a couple of weeks ago.
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These are radishes, and I will probably thin these and let them grow in the container, but I saw some cabbage plants coming up, and they can go directly in the garden in a few weeks.

And, I have Saint helping me on a project. This is the last well, maybe next to last project out of the antique bed that I purchased for seven bucks. I’ve already shown you several of the things made out of “parts and pieces” of that lovely old thing. This is what we are working on, now.
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And I’ll bet you can’t wait to see what it’s going to be. We are WAITING for the glue to dry and waiting for spring. Don’t forget to “spring forward” tonight. I’ll miss that hour of sleep, but I love daylight savings time…one more hour of light on a beautiful, spring day! Can’t wait!