Four leaf clover πŸ€Β 

I was sitting in the garden with two wonderful Fathers! 

My dad and Josh ❀️️❀️️


I was admiring my parent’s garden…


When I found a four leaf clover! πŸ€


I admit… I am one lucky woman!


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Savory Sourdough Pancakes with fresh picked herbs

Oh my – this dinner was so delicious, simple, cheap, and it fed an army of kids!

My sisters (3) and children (8) were visiting yesterday – when my sister Sonja suggested we make savory pancakes with the herbs from the garden! What a wonderful idea!

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Sonja not only had the brilliant idea, but she also said she would make them!

She quadrupled the sourdough pancake recipe!

As she was making them, she got worried she made too many…


But with 12 kids and 5 adults in the house, she actually made just enough!

Next, she needed fresh herbs to mix into the cream cheese…

The kids had a great time picking herbs from my garden! 🌿 

Pineapple Sage (eaten right away)



Basil 


Rosemary


Lemon Thyme 


Oregano


And my NEW FAVORITE – daylilly flowers


Everyone that tried the flower- thought it was so YUMMY!

Sonja prepared the cream cheese by tearing up the herbs and mixing them in.

And then we ate all those pancakes up!

Got any (easy) delicious recipes that call for fresh herbs? I’d love for you to share them with me!

DIY Flower Press 🌺 

I made a Nature Journal/ Recipe Book to keep track of all that I’m learning concerning herbs and weeds and natural remedies!


Yes- I have a laminator and a book binder! I realize this makes me a nerd and a half πŸ€“

Anyway…

I want to be able to place pressed flowers in the journal to help with plant identification… so I made a flower press this morning. 


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1. I cut two pieces of wood the same size 


2. I used my wood burning kit to decorate  the front and back of the press…


3. I cut cardboard pieces and paper the same size of the wood



4. I hot-glued Velcro to two ribbon πŸŽ€ strips which secures the press together


5. The fun begins… I get to find flowers and leaves to press and preserve!


I’m super excited to begin my flower/leaf collection! 

Window screen turned herb dryer 🌿 

I’ve basically given up on a traditional garden. This year I gave the kids some garden boxes and plants- and they have been successful!


I, on the other hand, am working on establishing an herb garden! I’m so excited to grow plants that have such health benefits! Also, herbs are easy to grow and most come back every year- bigger then before!!



The oregano 🌿 I planted three years ago is huge! 


I also have oregano in the front garden, so I decided to cut the backyard oregano and dry it.


I remembered that when we bought our new front door, it came with a screen. We have never used the screen nor do we plan on it… our dog would run right through it!!


So… I decide to use the large screen as a drying rack for the oregano!


Now, I just wait for the sun to work its drying magic β˜€οΈ and soon we will have dried oregano for our pastas and pizzas πŸ•!

I have room in my herb garden to grow more… I need some plant ideas! What’s your favorite herb?

Barefoot Baseball ⚾️ 

Josh suggested that, after church, we go play baseball at the park… and before I could say no, he enticed me with these sweet words, “You can play barefoot!”

How could I say no LOL πŸ˜†!!

Yesterday we bought the kids wooden bats at a garage safe for $1 each! 

We bought the bats with the intention of using our wood burning kit – so the kids can  decorate them and make them cool 😎!

But today- we decided to test the bats out to see how well they hit! and they hit well!! Andre’s black bat is called lucky πŸ˜‰

Josh got a great shot of me MISSING the ball! (For the record- Eli was pitching!)

We had to pause the game to identify a flattened squirrel (yes I took a picture because a picture is better than the alternative… taking it home for the nature shelf!)


FYI- you can get ice waters from QT for 25 cents! And refills are free!! πŸ’¦ 


I admit that after a few innings I started to get distracted from the huge pine trees next to me!

I collected fallen immature green pine cones (they smell amazing!!)


and needles to make pine infused oil! 


So- barefoot baseball ⚾️ with a bit of pine foraging 🌲 made for a beautiful Sunday afternoon! πŸ˜€β˜€οΈοΈβ€οΈοΈ

Total solar eclipse workshop

We went to a library workshop on the total solar eclipse that will be happening soon! 


August 21, 2017 at 1:17 to be exact!!


We were given awesome glasses made specifically for the eclipse! You can safely look at the sun through them… and the sun looks like an adorable star β˜€οΈ ⭐️!!


We were given demonstrations about how and why there will be an eclipse. 🌏 


After the interesting lecture that involved models of the earth and moon as well as maps of the viewing area…



We got to try out other viewing tools.  Safety is important when watching an eclipse as the sun can damage your eyes!! πŸ‘€ 


Here are pictures of the flyer they gave us.  It has some valuable information on it about watching the eclipse, especially if your in the Saint Louis area!


Mystery Pond

Simone and I went to Cadette-Camp-a-Rama (Girl Scout Camp) this past weekend!


While Simone was off with her friend being independent, I assisted at the Mystery Pond!


What’s Mystery Pond?

It’s a very healthy pond that the girls get to explore using nets and scoops!

*I know it looks like poison ivy at the bottom of that picture – but it is fragrant sumac… I learned how to tell the difference πŸ™‚
Cool findings at the pond-


🐸 frogs and tadpoles



Leeches (notice the eggs on the underside of one of the leeches!)

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Dragonfly larva


You can see the Professor opening its mouth pinchers… such a cool trick!

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Water scorpion πŸ¦‚- no it’s not poisonous!

 

Egg sack! We don’t know what little critters will hatch out of here- but… I’m sure they will be small and creepy 😳!


Horse hair worms!

Duckweed… it looks like pond scum but- it’s actually the WORLD’s smaller flowering plant! It only has two tiny leaves and it has an itty bitty white flower!

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I also learned the difference between red oak trees and white oak tress! Red oak have spikes at the end of their leaf tips and white oaks are rounded!

The best part of the day was that my home-made bug-repellent worked!!!

It’s just coconut oil, beeswax, and a lot of lemon eucalyptus oil!

I totally recommend you making your own… and then go find a pond to explore!


I’m not wearing my white dress today!

Notice a difference between yesterday…

… and today?

Same pool… different outfit!

My month of wearing the same white dress is over!Β 

(why I wore-the-same-dress-for-a-month)

How I felt this morning…

  1. I contemplated wearing the dress again today… but *gasp* it was dirty LOL! I got back late from a Girl Scout BBQ and was too tired to think of washing the dress last night!
  2. I was overwhelmed for a moment with all my clothing options! 😳
  3. I decided to just put on the first skirt and tanktop I pulled out of my closet!Β 
  4. Boom* that was easy! LOL!!

What I learned from wearing the same outfit for a month…


  1. It’s okay to not be 100% I wore sweats to Eddie’s chilly late night baseball game! I even wore a different dress to a party once because my white dress was still on the spin cycle in the washing machine (yeah I procrastinated too long!)
  2. I have supportive friends and family! No one thought I was crazy 😜, some even thought it was a neat idea!
  3. My husband is fabulous!!! 😍 some days I didn’t want to wear the dress.. and he would encourage me! He told me he loved me in my dress and he made me feel beautiful in it every.single.day!
  4. People who didn’t know why I was wearing the same dress everyday either didn’t notice or didn’t care! Proof we worry about what people will think for no reason!
  5. Wearing an outfit that fit me well everyday made me self-confident! I stopped thinking about my weight and how my body didn’t feel right in a particular outfit! It felt good to feel good about myself everyday!
  6. I like variety!Β By the end I was discussing tattoos and pink hair with my husband! πŸ˜†
  7. I will be going through my clothes and just keep the clothes I feel good in! I don’t need a lot- it’s about quality not quantity!

I made my own healing salves… plantain and comfrey!

Why didn’t I know about comfrey when my boys broke their bones!  

Andre just broke his knee last fall… 

… so an herb that can help mend bones would have been appropriate!

Yup- comfrey can help knit bones together! It also helps bruises and other ouchies… but it shouldn’t be used on open wounds as it can heal it too quickly- trapping an infection!

I actually came across this herb by accident! 

I ordered oatstraw leaves from Amazon and received comfrey leaves instead. After a quick phone call to Amazon, I got a refund… and I got to keep the Comfrey!


I googled and researched and found that the best way to use comfrey is in a salve! I also learned that the common weed plantain can also be a healing slave (one that can be used directly on scrapes).

So- I decided to make three different kinds of oil-infused salves! Comfrey salve, plantain salve, and a combo salve!

How I made my salves!

  • I measured out 1 cup of dried comfrey leaves and put it in a clean mason jar!

  • I also put 1-2 a cup in a jar for my combo salve!
  • I picked fresh plantain leaves πŸƒ  I checked each leaf twice- good thing since I found 2 slugs on the underside of the leaves!

    • I put the leaves in a food processor  


    I had one mason jar with 1 cup of comfrey leaves, 1 jar with 1 cup of plantain leave, and 1 jar with 1/2 a cup of each!

    • I melted coconut oil and poured it into each jar (it was about 1 1/2 cups in each jar)

    The hot coconut oil bubbled when I poured it on the leaves and the boys said it looked like minecraft potions!


    • With lids on each jar, I put them in the crockpot on low for about 15 hours! 

    • Then, I strained the oils through a cheesecloth.

    • And finally, I added 1 1/2 tablespoons of beeswax to each type of salve!


    I put them in small jars- ready for some healing actions!

    I hope I don’t need all this salve in one summer!!! 

    It has a shelf life of several years… if I don’t gift it away first! πŸ˜ƒ

    Wild birthday fun!

    We drove to KY for my niece’s wild birthday party… Little House on the Prairie style!


    It was great to meet up with several of my sisters and their families!


    For the occasion I made my sister and her four kids blue bonnets… 



    Birthday Party Activities:

    Foraging in the backyard

    I took the kids around the backyard while we looked for edible weeds!

    Wood Sorrel


    White Clover Flowers


    Mulberries


    Wild strawberries (snakeberries)


    Honeysuckle

    We found an OWL PELLET! with small red cardinal feathers in it!


    We walked to the farmers market…


    They got to run alongside a train πŸš‚ 


    We went to an old used bookstore where I found some amazing nature books!


    Eli caught his first Pokémon 😝!


    We milked cows!


    Made butter


    Embroidery Sewing


    Corn Husk Dolls


    Shelly the turtle became an honory guest after he was found wandering the backyard… he rested comfortably in the shade for a bit before being released!


    I love my family ❀️ and am so glad we could make the trip for this fabulous party!! πŸŽ‰ 


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