Posts Tagged Juicer
Writer’s block descended upon me early this morning. It is not so much writer’s block as having too many ideas for too many topics all at once and not being able to decide between them. Then there were several interruptions. It is one of those days when people assume that I can do as I please since I am self-employed. They are right. I can do as I please, and what pleases me is to be doing my work, right here, at this keyboard, to research topics and concoct articles, to read, to learn.
The interruptions today brought me to a pause, much like when we have placed all our skill and energy into preparing a special meal and reach a moment when all that remains is to wait for guests to arrive. We lose ourselves in the process until a change of pace makes us keenly aware of every detail again.
Perhaps everything we do is like that. Yes. Now that I think about it, every single action or process leads to a pause, many in fact, when we look at what we have accomplished so far and cannot help but give in to a few philosophical musings. This mind shift is what turns our daily activities into living poetry. It connects us to everything in a fresh new way. Some call this epiphany. It is at the source of our greatest moments of gratitude. It comes upon us through the senses, triggered by an object, a color, a smell. The poetry goes like this…
After installing a weed mat, kneeling by this year’s new garden plot - There is a place and time for weeds and a place and time for sustenance, just as there is a time for rambunctious humor and a time for serious, down to business living.
Looking back at the garden, after seeding the first rows – Now the wait. We do not want to wait, yet it is in the waiting, as much as in harvesting, that nourishment is found. Waiting grows our sense of awe. It makes it impossible for us to take anything for granted.
While cleaning the pressure canner and putting away the canning accessories and recipe book - There is much reassurance in knowing that a fresh store of wholesome food awaits. There is much reassurance in realizing that, in spite of our technological advancements, we persist in digging our own hands in the ground to give birth to our own nourishment. This, perhaps, is one of the surest signs of our immutable humanity.
As we disassemble the juicer or blender and take great, carefree gulps of the refreshing, living liquid - If only we could drink in each moment with such a sense of renewal. Each moment is renewal; it is only the observer who refuses, or fails, to know this. Maybe we should drink a fresh gulp of juice, or at least water, every time we lose faith in the possibility of renewal. Maybe that is all it takes to shift our thoughts and find hope again.
My writer’s block is gone at the moment. So I’ll pause while I’m ahead!
Quite a tall order, don’t you think? I feel like Maria Von Trapp, all of a sudden, singing “These are a few of my favorite things!”
It is Valentine’s Day and I was thinking about all the young and not so young couples who will be dining at the restaurant across the street from my home, enjoying a feast, indulging, savoring the moment and each other’s presence. What will they talk about? Plans for the future, a new homestead on the horizon, family, travel and all sorts of dreams, I would think.
Love is not just about couples and marriage of course. We love many different people and things in many different ways. We love one season more than another. We love our children and siblings and we love the furry ones who share our homes (I am not talking about the monstrous spider I did not have the heart to kill the other night… that’s another story).
As you can see, my mind is fluttering right and left as I contemplate this day to celebrate love, but it all came together as I visualized my thoughts, or rather when I laid eyes on my cat’s wheatgrass dish. At this point you are welcome to think Granny is loosing it… but I am not, I assure you.
Love is about pampering those we care about and about being good to ourselves too. It is those little things we do to embellish our surroundings so that we feel good wherever we look. I see that small patch of wheatgrass and I think of spring. How fortunate we are to have heated homes where we can nurture and enjoy little portions of nature throughout the year, even here in New England. How fortunate we are to have fresh produce year-round, whether we grow it ourselves or not.
I watch my cat bury her nose into her wheatgrass to find the perfect, most succulent blade, pull it and devour it as she purrs and I know this is the right sort of pampering I can provide for her. I do not buy many commercial treats for my pets. I prefer to provide something from nature. The dog loves apples. This and the wheatgrass can be chopped and added to their food also.
As far as pampering myself (who else is going to do it?!), the same rules apply: Find delight in what nature offers. It is quite simple and always a source of pure pleasure, as you already know. Thus, I will end this long and roundabout discussion about love, spring, pets and natural delights with a quick recipe for a Valentine’s Day Smoothie to bring spring and vigor to the entire body.
Spring Splash Smoothie
3 inch round of wheatgrass (or less, to taste)
12 crushed ice cubes
Process fruits and wheatgrass in a juicer. Transfer juices to blender. For extra pulp, process entirely in a blender (you will need to add water to taste). Add crushed ice. Blend on high for 30 seconds or until consistency is pleasing. Serve. If you are serving for company, embellish with a sprig of parsley or a slice of orange.
Happy Valentine’s day! Wishing you lots of pampering.
In unison across the nation, on this day, we gather at tables in the homes of relatives or perhaps in restaurants to feast, to laugh, to reconnect, to reminisce.
Some live with abundance every day while others struggle to feed a family, a child or themselves. Nevertheless, regardless of our circumstances, we arrive wide-eyed at the well-garnished table, because today the meal is seasoned with love and gratitude; not that our every day meals are any less worthy of recognition. Perhaps this meal is the culmination of all others.
Life and society bring normal, inevitable and sometimes gigantic challenges. We watch and react. It is human nature. We assess and criticize. We criticize those who criticize, not remembering that at every turn of history and innovation it is this critical eye that leads thinkers, inventors, leaders, parents and even children to this thought: “We can do better.” Why, even animals come to this conclusion with their own circumstances.
So we invent machines intended to improve the processes that help us communicate, travel and procure shelter and food and then we look at those machines and say, “We are polluting. This is bad.” But it is not, because in the instant we have that thought, someone is already at the drawing table, thinking up a better way. Perfection is a process.
We can do everything by hand to save energy, and there is nothing wrong with that for each one has their own style, or we can use blenders and juicers and strainers and grinders. These change everything. They change how we make food and what we do with the day before and after we make food. They even change our creative impulses, which in turn brings us joy. There is so much value in that.
The crop that did not succeed out in the open turns to great and manageable abundance within the shelter of a greenhouse or a cold frame. Go figure. The single person on limited income can find joy, even a sense of great abundance, in the harvest on their front stoop thanks to a cleverly designed square-foot growing kit.
All of these things exist because someone, somewhere asked, “How can we make this better?” Someone, somewhere, benefits. Always. And the moments of glory we experience because we had the right tools, or even the right things in general, inspire who we are with ourselves and with others. For some, it is their bare hands; for others, an elaborate workshop. The painter needs a paint brush and the singer needs a voice. We gather the things that work best for us.
And there are the bigger things we bring into our lives. Big cars and patio furniture and impressive lawn swings where the grand-parents sit all evening with the children when perhaps a regular chair might do. But sitting with the children is about atmosphere and the swinging inspires a song or a story they will remember their entire lives. In fact, years later you realize that this very swing is the seat of their deepest values. That is something to be thankful for.
Then we invent or continue traditions absent-mindedly, probably because indeed, tradition must flow like the blood in our veins, without a second thought. “It is just another commercial holiday,” we may think at some point, questioning the practice. Who cares. If it is a reason to gather and rejoice and take stock and be thankful, so be it.
Like the table that offers a wild and vast garden of color and nourishment, Thanksgiving broadens the horizon of our perception so that on this day, we are thankful for what we have, who we are, where we’re going, and the greater picture that somehow led to this moment in spite of unimaginable mistakes and obstacles. Even in those times in life when we are down to nearly nothing, all of us catch ourselves smiling at some point, as if it all did not matter; or as if it did.
In the end, what matters is that we uplift each other, somehow.