Wednesday, December 16, 2015

HOMEMADE AND OH SO GOOD CARAMEL SAUCE 2015

Oh my...who doesn't love hot from the stove...and made with a dash of love... homemade Caramel Sauce!

Here is a easy peesy recipe for you...to pour over...dip into...and lick from the spoon treat... this holiday season.

Be sure to make extra for last minute gifts...just cool...pour into small clean jars...label...and add a bow...to give as a sweet and thoughtful gift.

EASY HOMEMADE CARAMEL SAUCE
makes 3 cups

2 cups packed brown sugar
8 tablespoons salted butter
1/2 cups heavy cream
pinch of sea salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Add the brown sugar...the heavy cream and salt to a 3-quart saucepan...and heat over medium low heat.Stir to combine...and keep your eye on this while it cooks...so it will not burn. Next add your butter...allowing the butter to melt completely...and continue to cook the mixture until it reaches a rolling boil...and once it does...continue to cook the caramel another 5 to 7 minutes...stirring and watching over the caramel until it thickens. Once it thickens...remove from heat...and add the vanilla. Allow to cool for a few minutes...use immediately...or pour cooled caramel into small jars...cap tightly and store in the fridge for later use...or to give as gifts.

Finger licking good!

Happy Holidays
Victoria

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS DECEMBER 2015

December musings... The holiday celebrations...my family and friends... the shopping.. paper and bows....the gifts...and of course all the good food I will prepare...gladly eat and share with my loved ones...will create another holiday season...of sweet memories that will stay close to my heart forever.

The spirit of Christmas truly is about the rebirth of your soul...and goodwill to all...something I want to carry with me...each and everyday. I am the first to admit that in a world of constant turmoil... violence... and chaos...I have my moments of despair and worry...about what the future will look like for my children and grandchildren. This is only human...to worry and feel fearful...at times. But that is really not the answer for me or for you.To live in constant emotional turmoil is not living at all...or allowing your soul to embrace the goodness and joy that life truly is.

This month of December rebirth that place in your heart and soul...that knows that somehow everything will work out...and that your purpose is to not live in hate...fear or worry...but to have a faith in something that is far bigger than you are...or any human for that matter. Trust and have deep hope. Make each day count...and be grateful for all you have. This holiday season embrace your heart...and share your love for your family and friends...and focus on that beautiful light...instead of the darkness. Love is the most powerful force in the world...and the world needs your love...not your fear.

May you be blessed this holiday month...with all things right and good in the world...and the very best wishes...for a happy and abundant New Year.

Because there is hope...and goodness in the world...always...and you can make a difference...by sharing your love and light...because it is the right thing to do. The only thing to do.

Always.

Happy holidays to you,
Victoria


" I heard a bird sing
   In the dark of
   December
   A magical thing
   And sweet to remember
' We are nearer to Spring
  Than we were in
  September;
  I heard a bird sing
  In the dark of
  December."

By Oliver Herford...I heard A Bird Sing


PRAYER FOR DECEMBER...

" Fill my being with hope...faith...and trust...and to always shine my inner light...out into the world".



WORLD TRADITIONS AND CELEBRATIONS FOR DECEMBER...

December 7th...Hanukkah begins... December 11th... L' Escalade Chocolate Festival in Switzerland...St. Lucia Day in Sweden December 13th...Winter Solstice is December 21st...December 25th...Christmas Day...December 26th...Kwanzaa... December 31st New Years Eve


FACTS ABOUT DECEMBER... December is the month with the shortest daylight hours of the year...in the Northern Hemisphere and the longest daylight hours of the year in the Southern Hemisphere.

ST.Francis of Assisi is credited with making the first Nativity scene as part of the Christmas tradition...in the year 1223.



DECEMBER IN FRENCH...Decembre

DECEMBER IN ITALIAN...Dicembre

DECEMBER IN GERMAN...Dezember

FOLKLORE FOR DECEMBER...

" Snow on Christmas means Easter will be green."

"The nearer the New Moon to Christmas Day...the harder the Winter."

GARDENING TIP... Rake fallen leaves...prune dead limbs on trees

HOMEMAKING TIP...Find ways to decorate your home this holiday season with natural items...fresh greenery...lovely holiday flowers and herbs...pine cones...nuts...and fruits.

FULL MOON...December 25th

WINTER SOLSTICE... December 21st

FLOWERS FOR DECEMBER...Holly...poinsettia...Christmas cactus

GEMS FOR DECEMBER...Peridot

TEACHINGS FOR DECEMBER...Reach out to family and friends this month...share and give of yourself. Spend time reflecting ways you can live more from your heart so you can rebirth yourself.


NEW YEARS EVE TRADITION FOR THE FAMILY...

Simple...meaningful traditions are such a wonderful way to celebrate and honor all those special events in your life...as well as being a venue to teach and share life lessons and wisdom.

SUPPLIES: 1 large bowl of water...flower buds...tray or plate to hold the flower buds

Gather the family together...including small children...in a room where you have placed a large bowl of water. Have flower buds on a tray or plate next to the bowl of water. Ask each person...how they could be a more loving...positive and giving person in the New Year. Give each person a few moments to ponder this question.

When everyone is ready...have each person take a flower bud and say out loud what they are going to do to be a more loving...positive...giving human being in this New Year...and then place their flower bud into the bowl of water. After everyone is done...encourage everyone to clap and then hug one another...in celebration of everyone making 2016 a more positive life experience for the whole family.

Happy New Year!



SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS

...FOR YOUR HOME

Make it a beautiful...welcoming...and warm space...this month... by adding natural...simple...and organic elements...in your rooms. Pine cones...sprinkled with pure Pine essential oil...placed in bowls or trays...will not only look pretty...but smell wonderful too.


...FOR YOUR HEARTH

Oh my...I know you are ready for some lighter fare at some point during this month...and below is a simple...and healthy snack or before dinner appetizer.

WHITE BEAN AND KALAMATA OLIVE HUMMUS
Makes 6 servings

1 (15-ounce can) cannellini or other white bean...rinsed and drained
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon tahini (sesame paste)
3 tablespoons extra-virgin-olive oil
1/4 cup pitted kalamata olives
1 teaspoon sea salt

Place the beans...garlic and tahini in a food processor. With the machine running...slowly drizzle in the oil and blend to the desired consistency. Add the olives and pulse until they are just chopped and incorporated. Season with the salt.

Serve with assorted veggies...such as carrots...snap peas...cucumbers...zucchini...jicama...green peppers...or radishes. The hummus can be stored in an airtight container and stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.


...FOR YOUR HEART

OUT WITH THE OLD BATH SOAK

There is something so symbolic about taking a long soak...to cleanse and release yourself...on New Year's Eve or as close to the end of this year that you can get...that I believe should be a tradition for everyone. Before you take your cleansing soak to release the old...write down on a piece of paper issues...past hurts...patterns or anything that you no longer want or need in your life...in the New Year.

Run a hot bath...that you add 2 cups Epsom salts...2 cups of apple cider vinegar...and 10 drops of Rosemary...Sage...or Lemon pure essential oil while the water is running. Each one of these natural ingredients has cleansing and detoxing properties...and are also loaded with physical health benefits...for you.

Before you get in your soak...take a moment or two to read over your prepared list that you want to release...and you can if you want ask for guidance or say a prayer...or verbally make a deep commitment to yourself that you no longer what these listed items in your life...and are willing to do what it takes to let them go.

As you soak...imagine you are washing away all you want to release from your list...saying it out loud...to put emotion into it...declaring like you mean it...that you are done once and for all...with these issues.

When you feel complete...take a moment or two to just rest in the bath water...then towel off...and relax for a bit. Spend a few minutes writing down what changes you need to make...and the action steps necessary by you...to move forward without the issues you just washed away...in the New Year.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS NOVEMBER 2015

November musings...My children...my husband...my grandson...sunrises...my garden...hugs...herbs...warm clothes...fresh water...taking a bath...candle light...rainy days...laughter...a clean house...freedom...good health... goat milk soap...good food...quality friends...quiet...solitude...options...wisdom...fresh flowers in my home...trees...all of these simple...and joyful things are some of what I am most grateful for in my life.

Really as I have gotten older...and hopefully much wiser...I have come to appreciate the small things...which are the big things to me...in my life...with such gratitude. Oh yes of course...I do understand the value...and it's place...of having a nice home...and the resources to live comfortably... but it is all the "love"stuff..that I value more...and give thanks for...than at any other cycle in my life.

Never take your life...for granted.If you look very close...at all you really do have...to appreciate...and be thankful for...you will stay in a place of gratitude. Life is not about the stuff you have...or want to have...but truly is about the quality of the simple...inner heart things you have...that no one...or any situation can ever take away from you...or be replaced with something material.

This Thanksgiving month...embrace all you have to be grateful for...including the gift of being alive.

Gratitude...is seeing your life...with your heart.

And really...that is what it is all about.

Blessings to you,
Victoria


" November comes
And November goes
with  the last red berries
and the first white snows.

With night coming early,
And dawn coming late,
And ice in the bucket
And frost by the gate.

The fires burn
And the kettles sing,
And the earth sinks to rest
Until next spring."

by Elizabeth Coatsworth



WORLD TRADITIONS AND CELEBRATIONS...November 1st...All Saint's Day...November 10th...Veterans Day...November 11th...St. Martin's Day...November 26th...Thanksgiving Day


FACTS ABOUT NOVEMBER...On November 8th 1731 Benjamin Franklin with members of his Junto Club opened the first United States library.

The name November is believed to derive from "novem" which is the Latin word for the number nine in the ancient Roman calendar.

FIRST THANKSGIVING FEAST...

Turkey was not served at the first Thanksgiving feast.According to history...the New England settlers ate roast duck or goose...seafood such as lobster...clams...and mussels. They also ate chestnuts...walnuts...squash...carrots...and peas.


NOVEMBER IN FRENCH...Novembre

NOVEMBER IN ITALIAN...Novembre

NOVEMBER IN GERMAN...November

I found it so interesting that the word November was so similar in different languages.


FOLKLORE FOR NOVEMBER...'A warm November is the sign of a bad Winter."


GARDENING TIP FOR NOVEMBER...Rake leaves...prune fruit trees


HOMEMAKING TIP... Mop and wax your floors. Put cedar wood blocks or Lavender sachets in your closets and drawers...including your pantry for pest control. Polish your silver. Clean out your freezer...letting go of old food.


FULL MOON IN NOVEMBER...Is November 25th


FLOWERS FOR NOVEMBER...Chrysanthemum


GEMS FOR NOVEMBER... Lapis lazuli


TEACHINGS FOR NOVEMBER... Expressing gratitude for all you have...sharing and giving from the heart. Preparing for the Winter cycle.


THANKSGIVING GRATITUDE SHRINE (ALTAR)

Little altars or shrines are special places...where you can create in a small area... in your home...a way to honor or celebrate a favorite event...holiday...life change...or just for memory making.

It is so pleasurable to take candles...pictures...greenery or flowers...knick knacks and mementos...placed together to make a life story...  from them...that gives you meaning in such a creative way.

Find that perfect table...counter...or nook... in your home this month...to make your Thanksgiving Gratitude shrine.Collect items in your home that are a symbol to you of what you are grateful for this Thanksgiving month...such as pictures of your family or friends...postcards of places you were able to visit...coins or paper money to represent prosperity that you have been blessed with...good health etc. Whatever feels right for you...place these items and others on your shrine table. Candles...fresh flowers...or greenery also add a pretty and natural element...that will add beauty to your shrine...for you to enjoy throughout this month.

Once you have created your Thanksgiving Gratitude shrine...set out a bowl or tray...pen...and small pieces of cut paper...and each day write out what you are grateful for...and then place in your bowl...beginning if you can...the very first day of November. Get your whole family involved in this tradition...and ask them to do the same each day for the month of November.

On Thanksgiving Day...light the candles on your Thanksgiving Gratitude Shrine...as a way to focus your attention on all you have to be grateful for...and ask each person who has contributed their written gratitude messages...to take a few moments throughout the day or evening...to pause and say a prayer of thanksgiving for all they have received this year.

At the end of the month...place all the written gratitude messages...in a safe place...and keep them until the following year's Thanksgiving celebration...where they can be read out loud to everyone after your meal is over...sitting together in a circle. This is such a lovely...simple...and heart warming tradition...for you to practice each year...expressing the very important life lesson of gratitude.

Because the truth is...there is always something to be grateful for.


SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS

...FOR YOUR HOME

This is the month to cozy up your rooms...with warm throws...baskets of nuts and apples...and candlelight in each room. Forage outside and find fallen leaves...old branches...pods and seeds...and bring them inside to arrange natural...simple...and beautiful treasures from nature in bowls...vases...and baskets.


...FOR YOUR HEARTH

I am nuts for spuds...and try just about every potato recipe I find that looks good. This recipe is by far one of the best potato recipes I have ever made and eaten.Seriously... hide them in the back of the fridge for yourself to eat as a leftover...IF there is any left that is.

POTATOES SAVOYARDE
makes 6 servings

3 tablespoons unsalted butter...cut into small pieces
plus 1 tablespoon melted butter to grease baking dish
3 cloves fresh garlic minced
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf ( Italian) parsley
2 cups shredded Gruyere cheese
freshly ground pepper
4-6 russet potatoes or 21/2 pounds...washed...unpeeled and cut into 1/4 inch slices
1/12 cups chicken stock

Preheat the oven to 375. Brush the bottom and sides of a 2 quart baking dish with the melted butter.In a small bowl...stir together the minced garlic...parsley...cheese...and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Layer 1/3 of the potatoes in the prepared dish...sprinkle 1/3 of the cheese mixture over the potatoes and dot with 1 tablespoon of the butter. Repeat with half each of the remaining potatoes...garlic cheese mixture and butter.Top with remaining potatoes.Pour the chicken stock over potatoes sprinkle with the rest of the garlic cheese mixture and with 1 tablespoon of the butter. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes.

Remove the foil and continue baking uncovered...until the top is browned and crusty and the potatoes are fork tender...at least 30 to 40 more minutes. Serve right away.


...FOR YOUR HEART

Take care of yourself this month...as it is so easy to get stressed...with extra cooking...house work...guests and holiday shopping.

Making your own herbal baths...is such a soothing...nurturing way to give yourself self-care and self-love. It is detoxifying...relaxing...improves circulation...induces sleep...and eases discomfort in your joints or with an illness...and costs just pennies to make.

REVITALIZING GINGER...LEMON...PARSLEY BATH
should make at least 2 baths...depends on size of your bags

Supplies...
inexpensive muslin or cotton bags
1/4 minced ginger root...which will promote circulation
1/4 cup dried parsley...which was valued by the ancient Romans as a tonic for the skin
1/2 cup lemon peel (grated)... for a cleansing and aromatic effect
2 tablespoons oatmeal...to soften your skin

Place all ingredients in a small glass bowl...blend...then fill your muslin or cotton bags with herbal mixture...tie securely...and place in your bath water. Soak for at least 30 minutes. Towel off...and gently massage a body lotion all over. You will feel energized...and refreshed after this bath.


Thursday, October 1, 2015

SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS OCTOBER 2015

October musings... Pumpkins...apples..nuts... sweaters... slow simmering soups and baking...oh my! These are the things that October brings.

And these homey things makes my heart sing.

I love the nesting and return to home of this month...and you will find me puttering in my garden...checking on my herbs and roses...and cleaning my house from top to bottom. I love the smell of furniture wax...and the Rosemary and Sage essential oils I use to clean my home. And nothing gives me greater pleasure than cooking something that not only tastes good...but makes my whole house smell like the comforts of home...and my family.

As I tend to my home this month...cleaning...clearing out...and letting go of items that I once thought I needed... I use this time.. cleaning my home...to soul search and reflect on what I need and want to release from my life too. The clearing out of items that I think I needed is such a powerful symbol for me personally of people...and issues... wants and desires...that seem now to no longer belong in my life. Maybe they never did...it was just where I was at in my life.

It is so very true that as a human whether female or male...you experience different cycles in your own life...that creates change...about how you feel about things...the way you think...even your wants and needs are so different with each season of your life.

Other times lessons or difficult situations... makes you rethink and deeply reflect your life...causing you to make changes that resonate more with your soul.You become more aware at some point that life is short...and to waste your precious time on anything that doesn't hold true to your soul or self-worth...just needs to be released from your life..to make room for something more loving and real. Whether by changing cycles in your life...or by lessons or difficult times...beginning a journey of living a more soulful life...adds so much more meaning and authenticity to you as a human being.

And enriches your life tenfold.

May you be blessed this month with all that October offers you...pumpkins...good food...happy times...fun Halloween treats...and also the time to reflect...to release...and let go...of all those things...that is holding you back from your joy and happiness.

You can do it. Because truth is...your life is just that...your life.

And your time here on Earth...is just a blink of the eye...and your time is priceless.

And you are priceless too.

Make each moment count.

Happy October,
Victoria



"There is no season when such pleasant
  and sunny spots may be lighted on,
  and  produce so pleasant an effect
  on the feelings, as now in October."

- Nathaniel Hawthorne



WORLD TRADITIONS AND CELEBRATIONS FOR OCTOBER...

October 4th...Feast of St. Francis of Assisi... Patron saint of ecology...October 10th...Canadian Day of Thanksgiving...October 16th...World Food Day...Sponsored by the United Nations...October 24th...United Nations Day...October 31st...Halloween...or All Hallow's Eve.


HALLOWEEN TRADITION...

The week of Halloween...get out all your scary and spooky movies...and as a family watch one movie each night...with all the lights off! This is so much fun...to do with everyone. Allow screams!

***Not for very small children please.


FACTS ABOUT HALLOWEEN...

Halloween has its origins in the ancient Celtic festival known as Samhain ( pronounced "Sah-win")...which for the Gaelic culture was a celebration of the harvest season.

Irish and Scottish immigrants carried versions of the Halloween tradition to North America in the 19th century.

In Belgium...

The custom on Halloween night is to light candles in memory of dead relatives.

In China...

The Halloween festival is known as Teng Chief. Food and water are placed in front of pictures of family members who have departed and lanterns and bonfires are lit in order to light the way of the spirits to travel the earth on Halloween night.

In Sweden...

Halloween is known as "Alla Helgons Dag" and is celebrated from October 31st until November 6th.


OCTOBER IN FRENCH...Is Octobre

OCTOBER IN ITALIAN...Is Ottobre

OCTOBER IN GERMAN...Is Oktober


FOLKLORE FOR OCTOBER...

When deer are in a grey coat in October , expect a hard winter.

A warm October means a cold February


GARDENING TIP FOR OCTOBER...

Plant potted trees and shrubs in the ground


FULL MOON IN OCTOBER...October 27th

FLOWERS FOR OCTOBER... Are the marigold and cosmos

GEMS FOR OCTOBER... Is the opal

FACTS ABOUT OCTOBER...


TEACHINGS OF OCTOBER...This is the month to reflect on what you want to release in your life to create more positive change. Work on creating more harmony in your life.


SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS

...FOR YOUR HOME

Purchase lovely marigolds and cosmos...the official flowers of October...and put them in small vases in each room of your home...for a simple but pretty October feel and look.

A bowl of dried Bay leaves in a pretty glass bowl...makes a lovely center piece for your kitchen table...you can if you like...place small glass votive candle holders...with a white candle... around the bowl of Bay leaves...for added decoration... and it will look so festive when the candles..are lit...adding such a warm...cozy ambiance too.


...FOR YOUR HEARTH

It is always the case in October that social activities take center stage...and unexpected invites mean you need a quick...but very good dish to take or put out in your own kitchen table. You will love this Cheese Spread...trust me.

OLIVE GOAT CHEESE SPREAD
makes 3 cups

16 ounces organic soft goat cheese
fresh garlic to taste...try maybe 2 small cloves
2/3 cup grated sharp white cheddar cheese
4 sprigs fresh thyme
1/4 to 1/2 chopped pitted Greek olives

Using a food processor thoroughly mix the goat cheese...garlic...cheddar cheese and thyme.Toss in the chopped olives and pulse just until they are mixed in with other ingredients.Chill...and then serve at room temperature.

Serve with crackers...fresh crisp veggies...or toasted bread.


...FOR YOUR HEART

October is a month of reflection and release...so write down on fallen leaves with a magic maker all those things you want to release from your life.Once done with this process...crumble up the written release leaves...and scatter them in your yard. This simple act will empower you to release and let go...but remember you must follow through with the action steps too...to release...unwanted situations or issues.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS HOME BLESSING 2015

Here at Seasonal Living And Timeless Traditions...we believe in celebrating your home...because we know your home is a reflection for who you are...and all the care and attention you put into creating a beautiful haven for yourself and those you love... who live there. We also know that your  home is so much more than wood or stone...brick or mortar... it is your safe sanctuary from the outside world...worthy of harmony...and peaceful balance...as you cross the threshold into your private environment.

Have you ever gone into someone's home...and felt it wasn't quite right? And couldn't wait to leave?That is because a home has energies within it's walls...from those that reside there...and sometimes those energies need to be cleared out and released...to bring more positive and loving qualities into that  home  environment. Your home has energies too...whether from change...illness...a remodel...or other life transition...that you sense... needs to be cleared out and released...to restore a more positive and joyful "sense of balance"...to your home. Whether you live in an apartment...buying a new home...or renting...our "Home Blessing" is perfect for any dwelling.

Seasonal Living And Timeless Traditions has designed a wonderful celebration for you to cleanse stagnant energies within your home with our HOME BLESSING. A Home Blessing is a timeless tradition going back to ancient times...which I find so endearing...nurturing...and so very much needed in today's world. When you create our Home Blessing... you will be creating a  prayer or clear intention for the qualities YOU want in your home and all who reside within it's walls...in a simple...loving and easy format...that we provide for you...in an e-course form.

Included in your purchase of our "Home Blessing" written in easy to follow instructions...you will also receive a fact sheet of ancient facts about Home Blessings...and a document that you can cut out and frame...stating that your home has been blessed. And with your initial purchase... you will have the loving means to begin your tradition of blessing your home...again and again each year or when needed,

To order your "HOME BLESSING" just go to the sidebar on the right...click on the link to Seasonal Living And Timeless Traditions...and then click on the button TRADITIONS.

May your home be blessed,
Victoria


CUSTOMER REVIEW FOR OUR "HOME BLESSING" E-COURSE
from a happy customer...Laura Chiaramida

Seasonal Living And Timeless Traditions has created a beautifully written "Home Blessing"! Thoughtful...easy to follow instructions...makes it practical for everyone. This Home Blessing can involve the whole family or be completed quietly by yourself.

I have performed this "Home Blessing" a few times since purchasing Seasonal Living And Timeless Traditions "Home Blessing" and my home always feels lighter...calmer and brimming with positive energy after doing so.

Victoria Silva...founder and owner of Seasonal Living And Timeless Traditions...has created a lovely "Home Blessing" and I cannot recommend it enough.



Friday, September 4, 2015

SEPTEMBER HERBAL RECIPE 2015

September is a month of harvesting...and herbs carry on the tradition of culinary use in your kitchen...whether from your own garden...your local farmers's market or fresh organic from your grocery store...be sure to use them in abundance this harvest month of September.

Here then is a easy...simple and fantastic herbal recipe ...for you to enjoy. Great on beef...gratins...veggies...and chicken.

HANDMADE GREMOLATA
Makes about 2 1/2 tablespoons

2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 clove garlic...minced
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

Mix together the ingredients and scatter over the top of a dish you are preparing a few minutes before the end of cooking.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS SEPTEMBER 2015

September musings... The Sun casts certain shadows in the month of  September...that I just love to observe...and actually sit or stand in... for a minutes outside each day...and just "be" in it's waning light. It feels different...it looks different...the Sun's light that is...because it is retreating...slowly...as if by some cosmic clock...so the lovely season of Autumn can begin.

This month offers...soothing energy...as if the whole Earth...can sigh a big breath of release...from the intense heat of the Summer cycle...and the frenzy of growth. Just as the Sun is retreating it's bright light of the Summer season...you are given this natural yearly signal...to retreat also...and embrace the Autumn...known as the cycle of "gathering in"...to reflect... to release...give thanks...and explore yourself more deeply...for your personal growth in the future.

This is a time of great change and release in my own life...my youngest and last child at home...has spread her wings and moved away to college...leaving a feeling of emptiness for me in my heart...and her echo left here in our home. I miss her something fierce...but I know that this is such a very necessary step for her growth...and one for me too...as her parent .I need...and each person needs... to know how and when to release and let go...no matter how painful that experience might feel in the moment.

As one door closes...another door opens.

No matter what release you are now facing...embrace it...because something new awaits you on the other side. It may not be what you want...but more than likely it is what your soul needs for your life to expand...and for you to grow. Take the gift of this month of September...to be like the Sun...and retreat within yourself...connect and honor your feelings...and reflect on your life events...change... and what you need to release from your life...no matter what that might be.

This is what I must do right now...reflect...feel...release...so when the time is right...I can move forward...to embrace a new chapter in my life.

And be at peace.

Peaceful release to you,
Victoria




There are flowers enough in the
Summertime
More flowers than
I can remember-
But none with the purple,gold,and red
That dyes the flowers of September!

by Mary Howitt
(1799-1888)


THE SEPTEMBER HOME...Is all about nesting..bringing order...beauty and balance once again to the place you call home.Return to your kitchen for Autumn baking...making hearty soups and stews...and place apples...nuts and herbs on your kitchen counters. Fall cleaning is also in order this month...so clean your home from top to bottom. Be sure to add natural pest control buy placing small cedar squares in closets and drawers.

LEAVING THE NEST REFLECTION JAR...

My youngest daughter and last child at home...has just left for college...and my emotions feel so raw...and I know they will remain a roller coaster for some time...as I settle in to my cycle of being an "empty nester". I wanted to express my feelings and keep them...as I feel it is so important to write out how I feel...and hold the memories too. You might want to do this also...for a child of yours who is going off to college...moving into their first place...or moving to a new city...away from you.

Fill up your Leaving The Nest Reflection Jar ...starting the very day your child moves out and add to it each day for a FULL year...then present it to your child...on the exact day...the following year...to cherish forever your heart emotions...and deepest inner feelings when they left home for the first time.

Supplies you will need:
1 large recycled bottle or jar
small blank tags
pen

Each day record your feelings or thoughts by writing them out on one of your blank tags...then place in your jar or bottle. If you wish say a prayer or express a loving message to your child as you finish placing the written tag in the bottle.

Present your Leaving The Nest Reflection Jar to your child one year from the day they left home as a cherished gift to them...and ask them to carry on the tradition with their own children.



WORLD TRADITIONS AND CELEBRATIONS...
September 7th...Grandparents Day... September 21st.. International Day of Peace...September 23rd...Fall Equinox

In Greece the September Equinox is associated with the Greek mythology of the goddess Persephone and her return to be with her husband in the underworld. It is also a time when the Greeks reflect on successes or failures from the previous months.

In China...The mid-Autumn festival also known as the Moon Festival is celebrated around the time of the Fall Equinox...which honors the abundance of the Summers harvest with special moon cakes that are filled with lotus...sesame seeds...duck eggs or dried fruit.


SEPTEMBER IN FRENCH...Septembre

SEPTEMBER IN SPANISH...Setiembre


FOLKLORE...

Married in Septembers
golden glow, smooth
and serene your life will go.

FULL MOON...September 27th

LUNAR ECLIPSE... September 27th

FLOWERS FOR SEPTEMBER...Lily...asters

GEMS FOR SEPTEMBER...Sapphire

FACTS ABOUT SEPTEMBER...In Old England September was called Haervest-Monath (Harvest Month). This is the month to gather up the rest of the harvest and prepare for Winter.

TEACHINGS OF SEPTEMBER...This month is wonderful to reflect on your successes and failures so far this year...and make peace with situations that did not go the way you wanted them to. Do Fall cleaning and organize your home.


SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS

...FOR YOUR HOME

September is such a great month to clean out and clear out...your home environment...and creating a Home Blessing is such a special way to cleanse your home... once you have completed your cleaning and  clearing out process. I have designed a simple...lovely... and meaningful HOME BLESSING e-course that offers you a wonderful way to clear your home of unwanted energies and add the qualities you really want for your home and family. You will be able to feel the positive difference in your home creating my Home Blessing...and will want to make it a yearly tradition. By ordering my Home Blessing just once...you will have the directions...and easy to follow format to do just that...year after year ...after year. My Home Blessing e-course also makes a great gift to give to those you love and care about.

To order my Home Blessing...just click on the TRADITIONS  button that you will find on my website found on the right sidebar...or www.seasonallivingandtimelesstraditions.com


..FOR YOUR HEARTH

Carry on the tradition of baking...and make fresh baked goods this month of September in honor of the harvest season.

I am crazy good over any fruit dessert...and cobblers to me are so comforting and wholesome. Try this ever so good blackberry cobbler...and enjoy this wonderful traditional fruit dessert.

BLACKBERRY COBBLER
serves 6 to 8

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
4 cups fresh blackberries
1 cup sugar...plus a bit for sprinkling on top
1 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
pinch of fine sea salt
1 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
vanilla ice cream,,,,optional

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.Melt the butter in a large cast-iron skillet or ovenproof baking dish in the oven for 5 to 7 minutes. Do not let the butter burn.

While the skillet is heating up...place the blackberries in a large bowl. Using a potato masher...mash them to release some of their juices.If the berries are tart...sprinkle them with some of the sugar.

To make the batter...in another bowl...whisk together the flour...baking powder...and salt. Add the 1 cup sugar...milk...and vanilla extract...and stir until evenly blended.Next...remove the hot skillet from the oven and add the melted butter to the batter...and stir to combine. Pour the mixed batter all at once into the hot skillet...then add the blackberries and the juices to the center of the batter.

Bake until the top is golden brown and a cake tester (knife) comes out clean...about 60 minutes. Serve warm...or at room temperature with ice cream if you wish.



...FOR YOUR HEART

Have a good old-fashioned scavenger hunt...in your neighborhood or nearby park...and embrace your inner child!

Go to an apple orchard and pick your own apples.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS AUGUST 2015

August musings... This month is bringing such great change into my life...that feels so bittersweet... because my youngest daughter is leaving home for college. She will not be that far away...the trip is only an hour and a half tops...from our home...but to me it feels like a thousand miles away...to my mom heart. If you are a parent you do know how very difficult it is...and how heavy your heart feels when your children leave home. Yes...you did know that someday this would happen...but when it does actually happen...you feel frankly overwhelmed with this reality. I keep thinking " can I put the brakes on this... and just forget about it"?  Or better still..."can she not go away to college"? The mom thing...can be so irrational and filled with inner turmoil...all of it fed by emotions you can't or will not even begin to understand.

 It just is.

I am about to become what is known as an "empty nester". Doesn't that term even sound lonely? I feel like a label...has been imposed on me...ready for a trailer park somewhere...playing bingo...and drinking cocktails beginning at 10 am...with a bunch of other "empty nesters". Yikes! That vision scares me!

It is hard enough...often sad enough for me that my oldest daughter and grandson live an airplane flight away...which makes my heart hurt...I miss them so much. Now my soon to be  "empty nester" mind is now going to bingo and trailer park mentality. I need to get a grip.

I hope this "empty nesting" change doesn't mean my husband will now have to take Viagra...so we can experience that special moment. That would be the ultimate this is "s..."crap...and my life is over now...for me.

Maybe I will just become a hippie...oh wait...I pretty much already am one. Or get a tattoo? Have one already... ear piercings...already have double pierced ears. Smoke? I already love to smoke cigars. Cats...nope. Travel the country in an RV...not even no... but hell no.

On the brighter side...I keep reminding myself...she is going to her first pick college... and the town where she will be living is really pretty neat...and she has a few friends going to the same college...so she will already have folks she knows... to hang with. The college is close by...an easy drive...for us to drive down and see her. She has made a vow to come home once a month...which believe me I will hold her to...or put her on the worst guilt trip ever... for the rest of her life!

It is her time to go out on her own...and spread her wings...and my heart...best wishes...and  blessings go with her...it goes without saying. Her being able to go to a great college...where she will be laying a solid foundation for her own future...and my husband and I being able to give her this gift...is part of my personal harvest this year...and I am so very grateful.

My cup is full.

This season in my life...right now...is the cycle...of that bittersweet feeling that any parent knows and experiences...as the years of parenting...watching over...and nurturing your children...come to a close...not completely...ever...just in a different way.

I trust that all will go well...very well...for my daughter...and for your children too. Our children are...our most priceless harvest...our wealth beyond measure...and I know you are as grateful as I am...for the gifts of being a parent.

Blessings always,
Victoria



All that I have comes from my
Mother!

I give myself over to this pot.
My thoughts are on the good,
the healing properties of this
food.

My hands are balanced, I
season well!

I give myself over to this pot.
Life is being given to me.

I commit to sharing, I feed
others.
I feed She Who Feeds Me.

I give myself over to this gift.
I adorn this table with food.
I invite lovers and friends to
come share.

I thank you for this gift.
All that I have comes from my
Mother!

by Luisah Teish



WORLD TRADITIONS AND CELEBRATIONS FOR AUGUST

August 1st...First harvest...August 5th...Workers Day in Iceland...August 15th...Independence Day...in India...August 25th...Women's Equality Day


FULL MOON IN AUGUST...August 29th


FLOWERS FOR AUGUST... sunflower...marigold


GEMS FOR AUGUST...agate...onyx


TEACHINGS FOR AUGUST...This month marks the beginning of the harvest season...and is a month for you to ponder all aspects of your life that you can acknowledge appreciation for. August is also a month to honor all you have harvested thus far this year personally and professionally...including lessons that you learned.


FOLKLORE FOR AUGUST..."If the first week of August be warm...the winter will be white and
long."


HOW TO SAY AUGUST IN OTHER LANGUAGES... In French...August is Aout...In Italian...August is Agosto


FACTS ABOUT AUGUST...

Many cultures call this month The Harvest month...or The Time of the Harvest.

For three weeks in Scotland... the world's largest art's festival is held in Edinburgh...Scotland's capital. This yearly tradition features classical music..opera...theatre and dance.

In Japan starting August 13th...and ending August 16th...The Obon or the Festival of Lanterns is held. This celebration is much like The Day of the Dead...which honors a family's departed relatives.

During The Oban special food is prepared to place on home altars and in temples... and as the sun goes down... paper lanterns are lit and hung in doorways so their ancestors spirits can find their way home.


HARVEST CELEBRATION

Researching history can be great fun...and is such a wonderful tool for you to discover how your ancestors lived...their traditions and what their daily lives were like...and perhaps the struggles they encountered just gathering enough water to drink...and the long process of even preparing a simple meal.

This August marks the beginning of the harvest season...a time of harvesting the crops...giving thanks for the harvest...and celebrating with special foods brought in from the fields.

Here is a great way for you and your family or friends to celebrate this harvest season. Assign each person a task of doing research on a particular subject...such as...how did the the early pioneers celebrate the harvest season? What crops did they grow? What food did they prepare as a special treat for the harvest meal? Did they play music or dance that day? Also include as part of the research the customs or traditions of any particular country that you are a descendant from...including foods eaten or other traditions held during the harvest season.

Now for the fun part...after all the information is gathered from the research.Set a date in early August and plan a  harvest dinner around the foods or recipes you have researched and gathered.Get everyone involved in the food preparation...including table decorations that have a theme of the harvest season.

After all the food is prepared...gather round the table and have everyone share what they learned and what they found out about what it was like during the harvest season in days gone by...including the traditions and customs held during that time period. This will be such a great experience for each one of you...learning the deeper meaning of the harvest season and how important it was for our ancestors survival...as well as a teaching format of history of  your family ancestors. Open up the discussion also about the difficulties of living and surviving then..and how important the fields...crops and harvest season was...and how much we have today with our modern conveniences. This is such an insightful discussion...that hopefully will give each person present a deep appreciate for their food...and the many other blessings they have each day.


SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS


...FOR YOUR HOME

Set out pretty little bundles of wheat tied with gold ribbons...on tables...as a reminder of the harvest season.

Set out vases in each room...with this month's flowers...the sunflower or marigold.



...FOR YOUR  HEARTH

The month of August is the time to harvest your home grown herbs...or purchase organic fresh ones...and make some really healthy and good dips.

Herb and Yogurt Dip
serves 4

1 cup strained plain yogurt
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
a pinch of salt
freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons fresh sage leaves...finely chopped
3 tablespoons fresh marjoram leaves...finely chopped
11/2 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

Mix together all ingredients and refrigerate...serve with veggies...in baked potatoes...or with chips.


GARLIC HERB and TOMATO DIP
serves 4

3-4 fresh organic medium sized tomatoes...skinned
4 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1 clove garlic crushed
5 fresh basil leaves
a pinch of salt
freshly ground pepper

Skin the tomatoes by dropping them into a pot of boiling water for a second or two.The skin can then be easily removed..

Chop the skinned tomatoes into very small pieces.Add the chopped chives...and the basil that you have torn into small pieces....followed by the seasoning. Put all the ingredients into a blender or food processor and blend until smooth...serve with veggies...chips...or to spread on sandwiches.


...FOR YOUR HEART

Make a Harvest shrine or little altar on a little space in one room of your home...where you can place little stones...where you have written with a paint pen...things you have harvested this year...both personally and professionally...as a loving reminder for you to see each day...how much you have to be thankful for.





Friday, July 3, 2015

SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS JULY 4th PERSONAL FREEDOM CELEBRATION

Traditions practiced each year for certain holidays are a unique and valuable venue to help you grow and heal as a human being...and can mark your personal declaration to make positive changes in your life.

This July 4th...honor more personal freedom for yourself as a human being...by holding this simple but empowering PERSONAL FREEDOM celebration.


PERSONAL FREEDOM CELEBRATION

SUPPLIES: pieces of paper...pen...fire proof container...matches

Take pieces of paper that you have cut...and your pen...and find a quiet time during your day to write down on the pieces of paper...all issues and patterns you have now...that keep you from having freedom in your own life. Some examples might be...your need to worry...being in debt...negative people in your life...living in fear...etc. Just write them all down...without shame...or judging yourself.

When you are complete with this process...hold all your written pieces of paper in your hands...and say a blessing of release over them...a prayer...or any other message you want to communicate about your desire to release these issues or patterns from your life...so you can claim more personal freedom for yourself. Set these aside in a private place until the evening.

At some point in the evening...when you feel it is time...go outside...with your matches and a fireproof container...and then place your pieces of written paper in the container...proclaim your personal freedom out loud and then set fire to your pieces of paper...watching the paper burn to ashes...and seeing these issues or patterns released from within you.

Remember that you must take the necessary action steps to create positive change in your life to gain your personal freedom...but this freedom celebration is a powerful step...to create that change... and will set in motion your intentions.

Happy July 4th and freedom,
Victoria

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS JULY 2015

JULY musings... July is a month to focus and commit to one's goals...and so with great passion... I find myself this month wanting to dig deeper into my love of  fresh herbs...and the study of herbalism. I have always loved herbs...have grown them in my container garden...used them in my kitchen for my culinary needs...as well as for natural medicine...and soothing bath remedies...for many years. Nothing has given me greater pleasure than to pick my own herbs...smell their lovely aroma and then come into my kitchen and use them in my food preparation or to make a soothing bath or massage oil for physical healing. I have researched and studied them along the way...but now I want to know more...to experience more... of the ancient tradition and healing wisdom of the natural world...and my journey with herbs.

I feel very familiar and at home...in my heart and in my mind...touching...smelling...and using fresh herbs...perhaps in my memory...in another place and time...this was my calling or daily work...making herbal infusions...tinctures and soothing palms for women in childbirth or folks who were ill.

Whatever the case may be...I am feeling that inner urge to reconnect on a deeper level...my love of nature and her gifts of plant medicine through herbs. I know without a doubt that studying herbalism in a much broader scale than I have ever done before...is leading me somewhere that I am meant to go...to not only enrich my life...but to share the knowledge and wisdom of herbs with you too. Because one thing I do know for sure is that the use of herbs...whether in cooking...personal health...or emotional well-being...herbs work...are very affordable...and anyone can hugely benefit from their use.

Including you.

It is so empowering to pursue that nudge within...because of course...you are supposed to pay attention to such intuitive whispers when they happen...and truly trust those gifts of inner whispers...that always lead to new more positive paths...directions...and opportunities. Don't allow your negative mind chatter...talk you out of something that you just KNOW...it the right thing for you.

Just do it. One brave step at a time...no matter how big the task might appear to be..because truth is...you are so worthy of pursuing your goals...and will be so proud of yourself when you achieve whatever it is that you are aiming for.

You have my support,
Victoria



"Answer July-
Where is the bee-
Where is the blush-
Where is the hay?

Ah, said July-
Where is the seed-
Where is the bud-
Where is the May-
Answer Thee- me-"
by Emily Dickinson



FULL MOON FOR JULY...July 1st and  31st

FLOWERS FOR JULY... The lotus...water lily and jasmine

GEMS FOR JULY...The pearl...and moonstone

TEACHINGS OF JULY...Focusing on goals...and taking time to relax and enjoy life



FOLKLORE OF JULY...

Ne'er trust a July sky

If ant hills are high in July, the coming Winter will be hard.



BOOKS TO READ FOR JULY...

The Soul Garden
by Dr. Donald Norfolk



WORLD TRADITIONS AND CELEBRATIONS FOR JULY

July 1st...Canada Day...July 2nd...11 Palio Siena July 4th...Fourth of July...July 14th...Unity Day Rwanda...July 14th...Bastille Day France



SAY IT WITH HERBAL BOUQUETS

There is something so special about making an Herbal Bouquet...to place in your own home...but also to give as a delightful gift to those you care about. Small little bundles of beauty...Herbal Bouquets are perfect for weddings too...for the bridesmaids to carry...or as table settings.

To make your Herbal Bouquet ...gather together fresh herbs in various shades of green...shapes...and textures...including flowering herbs...and then tie with a pretty ribbon. Enjoy!




SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS


...FOR YOUR HOME

We all get the itch to fix up ...paint...or redo our homes at some point...and the Summer cycle...seems to be the perfect season to spruce things up. Chemical  free paint...is very affordable...easy to use...and comes in so many colors...that there is no good reason for you not to give this wonderful interior paint a try.

Here is a link for you to view this wonderful paint product...that will not harm you...your family...pets or the environment. This paint is organic...odorless and 100% VOC free.
www.ecospaints.net .


...FOR YOUR HEARTH

Warmer weather this month...calls for refreshing...but ever so good salads...here is one sure to please.This salad is also quite pretty


AVOCADO AND RUBY GRAPEFRUIT WITH CHILE SALAD
serves 2

1 ruby or pink grapefruit
1 small avocado
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 small fresh red chile...seeded and finely chopped
a handful of fresh cilantro leaves
extra-virgin olive oil

Slice off the top and bottom of the grapefruit. Stand it upright on a cutting board and work your way around the fruit with a sharp knife..cutting off all the skin and the white pith.Now hold the grapefruit in your hand over a bowl...to catch the juices and cut out the segments from between the membranes...letting the segments fall in the bowl.

Next..halve...peel...and pit the avocado...then cut lengthwise... into thin slices. Arrange on a large plate with the grapefruit segments and trickle on top...any remaining juice.

Sprinkle a little salt...fresh ground pepper...and the red chile over the salad.Finish with the cilantro and a generous trickle of olive oil. Serve at once in chilled bowls.


...FOR YOUR HEART

Take a class this month that will improve your quality of life...and give you a sense of pride. Herb classes...cooking classes...yoga...an art or writing class...is such a wonderful way for you to expand your life and make it better.

Join a community garden group...growing veggies ...herbs..fruit or even beautiful flowers...to give to those who are less fortunate than you.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

PERSIAN OR ENGLISH? ..SKIN OR NO SKIN?...SEASONAL LIVING... JUNE RECIPE...CUCUMBER SALAD WITH FRESH MINT

I love cucumbers...ice cold...sliced very thin...with out the peel or skins...unless it is those wonderful little Persian cucumbers which are my FAVORITE.Their skin is so thin and sweet tasting I do not mind eating the peel on these small beauties.

English cucumbers are good too...and basically seedless...so they are wonderful to use in salads or just eat as is for a snack.

Standard cucumbers are great too...just peel the skin...as it can be bitter tasting.

Here then...is a lovely and easy cucumber salad for those hot June lunches or dinners...enjoy!


CUCUMBER SALAD WITH MINT
serves 3 to 4

1 medium English cucumber or
1 medium standard cucumber or
4 to 5 Persian cucumbers (they are small) and my favorite

1 teaspoon cider vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
a handful of fresh mint...finely chopped
a pinch of sugar
sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Peel the skin off the cucumber...and halve it lengthwise. Slice into thick half-moons. Place in a glass dish with the cider vinegar...sugar...the olive oil...the mint ...and the salt and pepper.Toss together until well mixed. Allow to sit for 15 to 30 minutes...in the fridge...serve in ice cold bowls.

Victoria

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

MAKING YOUR OWN POTPOURRI JUNE 2015

How I love a sweet smelling home...especially when I can create it myself...is chemical free and ever so affordable. Below is a lovely scented homemade potpourri...that you can make in minutes...be sure to make extra for yourself...and store in a glass jar...and also give as a gift.


Potpourri gets its name from two French words...pot...which is the same in both languages and pourri...which means to rot.

You can simmer your blend on the stove...set it out in small bowls...or stuffed into pillows or sachets...either way... it is lovely.

ROSEMARY POTPOURRI

1/2 cup dried rosemary
1/2 cup dried peppermint
1/2 dried eucalyptus leaves
1/4 cup each dried thyme leaves and whole cloves
2 teaspoons dried grated lemon peel
1 teaspoon dried grated orange peel

Blend ingredients together until mixed...add to pillows or sachets...or gently simmer in a pot on the stove.


Monday, June 1, 2015

SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS JUNE 2015

JUNE musings...My happiest memories as a child...were June days spent at the beach...digging for sand crabs...tide pooling for starfish...holding seashells up to my small ears to listen to the sound of the ocean...and drawing pictures on the wet sand. Even now as I write this blog...I can feel those sweet June days at the beach... where I grew up in California... close to my heart...and forever smell the salt...that hangs in the air...on sea coasts.

Those were simple days back then...the whole world seemed to be uncomplicated...my whole future...far out and unknown to me...because small children really just do not think about things like that. Children just want to play and have fun...and never give a thought to change.

I did not have a great childhood...far from it...but those days at the beach made me feel free and unencumbered from all the chaos in my home...that never seemed to change...which is why being at the beach was my safe refuge...and my happy place. I can recall...even now...that feeling I experienced one day...coming home to yet another drama...that somehow I would change my life...and not end up living with the craziness I was having to deal with...in my unstable home life as a child.

My days at the beach ended...sadly...and so did living in California...but in it's place...my life changed...for the better...not by chance...but because I put thought into changing my life...step by step...little by little. Kind of like that little toy train going up the hill... in that child's story book "I think I can...I think I can".

I have made tons of mistakes...did stupid things...all the while forging ahead...to making my life better ... and changing myself from the inside ...out. Because that is what it takes. You...making the changes from within.

And change sometimes takes a life time. Even with the most dire or difficult situation...you can change your life for the better. And even if your life is really working well...there could be something...however small or minor that you can do to make a better you...for you...or those you care about.

This month of June...which marks the beginnings of the Summer cycle...offers you the valuable lesson of  growth and change... personally. Without growth and change your life becomes stagnant as well as dull. If you want to change... you have to "dig deep" within your very soul...to see with honest eyes...what is amiss that you are doing...that needs correcting...and work on  those amiss things each and every day. Like me...you will have set backs...still make mistakes...and feel disappointments...but your growth and change for the better is so worth it...because your life is worth it. And yes...some people will not support you or understand what the heck you are doing...but that really is none of your business...or theirs frankly. What is your business...is you...and what you want in life. And if what you want now...isn't what you experienced growing up...or even 2 years ago...then you have the golden opportunity in this moment...to take charge of your life... and reinvent yourself...from the inside... out.

Change...begins with you,
Victoria




FULL MOON...June 2nd

FLOWERS FOR JUNE... Rose...lavender

GEMS FOR JUNE...Topaz..agate

TEACHINGS FOR JUNE... This month is perfect for taking responsibility for your growth...and setting into action what change you want in your life.


FOLKLORE OF JUNE...

"A dripping June brings all things in tune"
" If  June be sunny, harvest comes early"


WORLD TRADITIONS AND CELEBRATIONS FOR THE MONTH OF JUNE

June 14th...Flag Day in America...June 15th...Father's Day...June 21st...Summer Solstice...June 24th...St, Jean Baptiste Day

DID YOU KNOW...That the month of June ...is National Rose month? America's association with the Rose dates back to the voyage of Christopher Columbus. It is said that while adrift in the Sargasso  Sea...one of his crew members found a Rose branch floating in the water...signaling land...and that this sign...of seeing the Rose branch in the sea...rekindled Columbus's spirit and gave him the courage to continue his journey to the New World.


SUMMER SOLSTICE TRADITION

The Summer Solstice is the first day of Summer...and the season of high energy...change and growth.
On the eve of the Summer Solstice...write down four things you are willing to let go of or stop doing...in your life...to make positive changes in your life. When you are complete with this process say a blessing or prayer over your list...and then burn your list in a fire safe container...as a statement that it will be gone forever in your life.

Then on another list...write down what you must now do to make your changes...and then of course you must take the necessary steps to make the changes...each and every day.



SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS


...FOR YOUR HOME

Lavender is one of the flowers for the month of June...so I wanted to share with you some home making tips using this wonderful flower and herb.

Try sprinkling pure Lavender essential oil on cotton balls and then place in your cupboards and even your refrigerator to deodorize and remove unpleasant smells.

Put cotton balls sprinkled with pure Lavender essential oil...in your closets to repel moths.

Simmer dried Lavender flowers in a pot with water on the stove...to fill your home with Lavender's wonderful aroma.


...FOR YOUR HEARTH

June fare is lighter and easy to prepare...and of course seasonal...fresh food is always the best in your kitchen...and for you and your family. Below is a really good shrimp dish...with a bit of spicy kick.

SHRIMP WITH GARLIC...CHILE...AND PARSLEY
serves 4

1 pound small to medium shrimp peeled and veined
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic thinly sliced
4 whole small peperoncini (peppers)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1/3 cup white wine
1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
lemon wedges for serving

In a large bowl toss the shrimp together with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil...garlic...and the peperoncini. Set aside to marinate for 15 to 20 minutes at room temperature,

Heat a large saute pan over high heat until very hot. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil...then cook the shrimp in batches with their marinade... seasoning them with salt and pepper...as you cook them...and also setting them aside as you go...until they are all pink and done.,

Deglaze the pan with the white wine...scraping up any cooking residue from the bottom and then stir in the parsley. Pour this pan sauce over the shrimp and serve immediately with lemon wedges.


...FOR YOUR HEART

Nurture yourself this month...by taking long soaks in essential oils...bath salts and flower petals. Below is my recipe for a Rose Healing Bath...a lovely way to sooth your body...mind...and spirit.

To make your Rose Bath...run your bath water...then add about 12 drops pure Rose essential oil...2 cups Epsom salt... and then sprinkle fresh Rose petals in the bath water. While you soak...ponder all the ways you can love and nurture yourself more...in small healthy ways...beginning with taking this wonderful bath more often.



Friday, May 1, 2015

SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS MAY 2015

May musings...The month of May has such lovely "mothering" qualities.One cannot help but be in a happy mood when May appears...because there is just so many beautiful sights to behold...and to fill up your senses. Flowers...of all colors...sizes...shapes and scent abound...birds chirp everywhere...their songs carried on the gentle winds.The green grass that feels like velvet on your bare feet... butterflies gracefully floating by.The beauty and wonder of nature...is such a sensual experience...such magic for the human heart to capture and hold close.

May awakens the spirit...because how could you not feel a deep sense of nurturing...with life and its boundless beauty...bursting forth all around you? I could spend countless hours just walking the aisles of plant nurseries ...smelling and touching ...each plant...flower and tree...wanting to take them all home with me...and plant  in my own yards. And herbs of any kind...always draws my attention...they are such pretty little things...but I also know from experience...how healthy and good they are for culinary use in my kitchen...and so healing as natural medicine for my family.

The Earth and her gifts to me...stirs my soul.

The Native Americans call the Earth our Great Mother...or Mother Earth. Which to me is so very appropriate. The Earth is like a mother...caring...nurturing... providing shelter...food and protection for her children. In the truest sense...the Earth keeps us alive...as a mother keeps her children alive.

I often wonder...and deeply ponder...how anyone could not take care of our planet...when the Earth gives us so much beauty...and sustenance. And frankly...where all of us live.I suppose each one of us...just perhaps takes for granted the air we breathe... the water we drink.. the plants and animals that are provided for us from the Earth...so we can eat...are just an endless service to us...as humans. And what about the joy...the unlimited beauty of the natural world? Can't you see all this with your soul...and see what a gift the beauty of nature gives us all? Isn't it the right time that we all care.. nurture...and appreciate  with the deepest gratitude... everything the Earth gives all of us...so we as humanity can thrive and live? I believe the Earth...is also deserving of our respect...caring attention... and mothering too.

I know in your heart...you do too.

This month of May...with the tradition of Mother's Day celebrated throughout the world...is the perfect month...to begin a journey of caring more...of nurturing more...everything that truly matters...including this place that is your home...called Earth. Each one of us...needs to take a step back and see how automatic...and unbalanced we have become. We must never take people...life... .or nature for granted...always taking instead of giving back.

Be responsible...live consciously...and walk softly on the Earth...giving back...taking care...and doing your part...for this beautiful planet we all call home.

Do it because it is the right thing to do.

Do it because the Earth...is your home.

Take care,
Victoria


WORLD TRADITIONS AND CELEBRATIONS FOR THE MONTH OF MAY

May 1st...May Day...May 5th...Cinco de Mayo...May 10th...Mother's Day...May 25th...Memorial Day


FULL MOON ...May 3rd

FLOWERS... lily of the valley...rose

GEMS...emerald


ENERGY  OR TEACHINGS OF MAY...

This is the month to nurture all life...which is a mothering quality. Also a very creative month...so get into your own creativity...no matter what that might be.


FOLKLORE...

"Mist in May...heat in June
  Makes harvest come right soon"


FACTS ABOUT MAY DAY

May Day celebrations have their origins n the Roman festival of Flora...goddess of fruit and flowers which marked the beginning of Summer.



HOMEMADE AND NURTURING TRADITIONS

It just takes minutes...and mere pennies to make your own special herbal essential oil blends...and below is a recipe for a hand treatment.

HEALING HANDS

1 drop pure Rose essential oil
1 teaspoon jojoba oil

Blend together in a small glass bowl...massage into hands. Keep extra blend...in a small bottle...with a lid and store in a cool...dry place.



MOTHER'S DAY TRADITION

Of course you will want to celebrate your own mom this Mother's Day...but how about starting a new tradition ...and honoring YOURSELF for all you do for your children?

Take yourself out to a nice lunch... see a movie...or give yourself the gift of a massage...or a facial.

Go for a walk in nature...a solo picnic or take that art or yoga class you have been wanting to take. Whatever you decide to do...do it with the utmost self-love and self-care for YOU...for all you give each and every day to your family.



MEMORIAL DAY TRADITION

This Memorial Day May 25th...light a candle... and say a prayer of gratitude and blessings for all the women and men who have fallen...for our country. They so deserve to be acknowledged for all they sacrificed...including their lives.



GARDEN TRADITION

Start a small herb garden this month...with herbs that are easily grown in your area. Purchase books or take a class so you can learn their culinary use...but also to clean your home...and use as a natural medicine. If you have children...please get them involved in this wonderful project too...they will learn so much about gardening...and respect nature this way...as well as get outside and get some exercise. It can also be their job to go outside and clip herbs for your recipes...teaching them responsibility too.



SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS...


...FOR YOUR HOME

Make your own scented natural dish soap ...by first purchasing an organic natural liquid soap such as Seventh Generation...take the top off...and add about 20 drops of pure Lavender essential oil...put lid back on and shake well. This is such an economical way to have that lovely scent of Lavender in your dish soap for mere pennies...plus the Lavender oil kills bacteria as well.

*** Be sure to buy only pure essential oils...some oils carry other fillers and ingredients and you do
not want this.


...FOR YOUR HEARTH

Just about everyone loves a sweet treat...and this dessert uses fresh Rosemary...that adds such a great taste to this simple ice cream dessert.


WARM MAPLE ROSEMARY BANANA SPLITS
Serves 4

3 ripe but firm bananas...peeled and halved crosswise and lengthwise
1/2 cup maple syrup
3 4-inch rosemary sprigs
vanilla ice cream
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup coarsely chopped toasted walnuts

Put the banana pieces in a skillet...and pour the maple syrup over them...and tuck the rosemary sprigs in between them. Bring the mixture to a low boil over medium heat and cook for about 1 minute. Turn the bananas over with 2 forks and cook for 30 seconds more. Scoop the ice cream into small bowls. Lift the bananas from the syrup with the 2 forks and lay pieces around each scoop of ice cream. Boil the syrup left in the pan for a minute or two until it thickens slightly...then swirl in the butter until it melts and is mixed. Use a fork to hold back the rosemary sprigs as you pour the sauce from the skillet over the bananas and ice cream. Sprinkle with the toasted walnuts. Enjoy!

***From the cookbook The Herbal Kitchen Cooking With Fragrance and Flavor by Jerry Traunfeld



...FOR YOUR HEART

If you are a mom...buy yourself some flowers for Mother's Day...just because you are so worth honoring YOURSELF with this beautiful gift of fresh flowers.

Friday, April 17, 2015

SPRING SEASON...HOMEMADE VANILLA GELATO... APRIL 2015

Making homemade food...that is fresh...in season...and using quality ingredients...just makes for good old common sense...because a few good ingredients costs so much less than any already packaged or prepared...food. I truly know that seasonal homemade food...is resourceful and money wise. And let's be honest...there is nothing so fulfilling than doing it yourself.

Here is a simple...very tasty homemade Gelato recipe...made for mere pennies a serving. You will need an ice cream maker though to make it.

VANILLA GELATO
serves 4

1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 cup sugar
1/2 vanilla bean split lengthwise

In a medium saucepan...combine the cream...milk...and sugar. Cook over medium heat...stirring until the sugar is dissolved...then slowly cook until it begins to bubble but not boil. Remove from heat. Scrape out the vanilla beans from the vanilla bean pod...and add to mixture...then just throw in the pod too...for extra flavor. Let stand for 30 minutes. When 30 minutes are finished ...take out the vanilla pod only...and pour mixture into a container with lid and put in freezer. When set...and softly frozen...take out and scoop mixture into your ice cream maker and process. Return to container when finished processing...and freeze until ready to serve.

This is a very rich...and yummy Gelato... I always double the batch.

From my kitchen hearth to yours,
Victoria


Tuesday, March 31, 2015

SEASONAL LIVING and TIMELESS TRADITIONS APRIL 2015

APRIL musings... My heart always does a happy dance this lovely month...first of all... because my wonderful daughter Aurora was born the first week of April...and secondly because everywhere I look there are beautiful flowers and green things growing in every nook and cranny upon the land. The dazzling colors...and lush greens...remind me of a beautiful quilt...and as always...I am amazed of the natural beauty of Mother Earth...in her process of renewal and rebirth each Spring.

The Spring season offers you too...the perfect cycle to spread your wings...and to renew and rebirth your own life...no matter what that renewal or rebirth is for you. Let the energy of this season of hope...and new beginnings... gently guide you to a better you...or to begin a new project or goal you have in your heart.

And please remember to live in present time...and not fuss or worry about the past...or the mistakes or fears you experienced then...when you are deciding to begin something new...it will just keep you stuck in negative memories and prevent you from moving on and going forward.

Renewal and rebirth take time...planning...and thoughtful consideration too...move forward only when you feel confident...have done your research...and feel intuitively...that you are on the right path for you...and then you must take the action steps you need to take to make your rebirth a reality for your life. It is so easy to create a fantasy life...with all the false information and hype these days about living your dream.Set goals for yourself that are "real"...in other words...you need to have the skills... or get them...a plan...  the desire...and know how to achieve what you want. You can't want to be rich and famous...without the venue to do so.

And do not forget that you might have obstacles...setbacks and detours...so if what you desire is right for you...and you are headed in the direction that is best for you...learn to weather the not so good storms...and adjust by being flexible and adapting to the situation.

Your living environment deserves a process of renewal too...so put Spring cleaning at the top of your list...and freshen up your home...and clear out items and unused "stuff". Add to your Spring cleaning list... laundering your  curtains...with a mild...organic detergent...and clean blinds and windows too...using vinegar...instead of harsh chemicals. Open your windows...and allow the sweet breezes of Spring to blow out stagnant air from your home...that have accumulated during the Winter months...believe me.,. this will make such a big difference.

In your April kitchen...local and seasonal foods are always the healthiest and most cost effective means to shop for and prepare tasty meals for you and your family. This month offers you artichokes...asparagus...beets...peas...water cress...turnips...and sweet onions. And who can resist fresh organic strawberries...oranges... and limes from your local farmers market? You will find all these delectable treats this month...so be sure to plan your meals around these seasonal foods.

Be sure to take some time this Spring cycle...to renew your inner self. Write down ways you want to grow and change...and then find the tools you need to help you do this. Try different things...explore new places...dress in a new style...and find ways to nurture yourself and practice self care. You will feel and have such a more positive attitude when  you really learn to care for your body...mind and spirit first. For those of you wanting to connect with your spiritual self...learn to meditate...take yoga classes...or begin to set aside time each day...to journal...pray...or read spiritual material.

Above all...enjoy this season...for the Spring is such a lovely and special time of the year. Spend as much time as you can...embracing being outside...and allowing nature to nurture your soul...encourage your renewal...and personal creativity. Go on nature dates...exploring parks...garden centers and hiking trails...and try your hand at gardening...planting herbs...tomatoes...or flowers. Nature is life-affirming...and teaches you how to honor and care for all life...and once you really understand the healing power of nature...and this valuable insight...your whole attitude about your own life will improve for the better...and those you care about.

I support you in your Spring cycle of deep renewal...rebirth...and new beginnings...and wish for you the very best this season has to offer. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about this Spring season.

Blessings,
Victoria


WORLD TRADITIONS AND CELEBRATIONS FOR APRIL
April 3rd...Good Friday...April 4th...Passover begins...April 5th Easter...April 7th...My daughters birthday...April 11th...Passover ends...April 22nd...Earth Day


FULL MOON...April 4th

LUNAR ECLIPSE...April 4th

FLOWERS FOR APRIL...daisy...sweetpea

STONES OR GEMS...ruby...garnet

ENERGY OF APRIL...creativity...change...new opportunities

FOLKLORE OF APRIL...Good luck will come your way if you first see the new moon outside over your right shoulder



Sowing the seed,
my hand is one with the earth.

Wanting the seed to grow,
my mind is one with the light.

Hoeing the crop,
my hands are one with the rain.

Having cared for the plants,
my mind is one with the air.

Hungry and trusting,
my mind is one with the earth.

Eating the fruit,
my body is one with earth.

by Wendell Berry



EASTER EGGS WITH ATTITUDE

This is just plain fun to do...but also is a subtle way to motivate those you care about. This Easter...start a new tradition by first coloring your Easter eggs...then writing on them with a magic marker or paint...positive statements...such as " you are so wonderful"..."you can do it"..."I believe in you" etc. etc. Be sure to make some of these affirmation eggs for yourself too! You will see such smiling faces when your loved ones... find and read...the positive affirmations... you have written on the eggs just for them.



EARTH DAY TRADITION

This April 22nd on Earth Day...start a new tradition...by picking up trash in your neighborhood...or nearby park...then treating yourself and your family to a really good lunch or dinner at an organic...local restaurant.


SEASONAL LIVING AND TIMELESS TRADITIONS


...FOR YOUR HOME

Spring clean this month...mopping your floors with pure Lemon Grass essential oil...your home will smell so wonderful...and pure essential oils are chemical free and clean really well.


,,,FOR YOUR HEARTH

I am a huge fan of honey...and as a family we do eat quite a bit of this sweet gift from nature...instead of white sugar. There are many different types of honey for purchase...all with unique flavors... and one of my favorite...Orange Blossom...is the honey used in this recipe.


HONEY POPCORN
serves 2

10 oz salted butter
2 tablespoons Orange Blossom honey
1  tablespoon soft brown sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 3/4 oz. popping corn

Melt the butter in a small saucepan with the honey...sugar...and cinnamon over a low heat...stirring often until sugar completely dissolves. Allow to come to a bubble for about 30 seconds to thicken slightly. Take off heat and set aside.

Put the oil into a large saucepan and place over a medium heat for about 30 seconds...to get hot. Add the corn and cover with a lid.Leave until you start to hear popping sounds.Shake the pan...with the lid on...and shake every few seconds until the corn stops popping. Turn off heat...and allow to sit with the lid on...for a few seconds to make sure the popcorn is done popping.

Pour your honey mixture directly on popcorn...stirring so all pieces are covered with the honey mixture.Pour into a large bowl and enjoy!


...FOR YOUR HEART

Bring more love and caring into everything you do...including your relationships.

Thank your body each and everyday for all your body does for you each moment.

Monday, March 16, 2015

SEASONAL LIVING and TIMELESS TRADITIONS A ST. PATRICK'S DAY RECIPE

March 17th...

Now I am not Irish by blood...but I have visited Ireland on a family vacation...and I must say...I love Ireland and her people...so anything Irish...is now cursing through my blood and gets my heart doing a dance.

Besides just falling head over heels with Ireland...I also fell in love with the food...you must know that the Irish grow the best tasting potatoes on the planet...believe me. Because of the incredible taste I made sure I ordered potatoes with every meal...and if I could of...I would of stashed a bushel or two in my luggage to bring home.So in honor of Ireland and her over the top good potatoes...here is a potato recipe for you to cook up this St. Patrick's Day!

This recipe comes from the book The Food and Cooking of Ireland by Biddy White Lennon and Georgina Campbell.

GRIDDLE POTATOES
serves 4-6

2 onions...peeled and chopped
1 1/2 whole cooked potatoes...boiled in their skins
a mixture of Irish butter...and oil for shallow frying
salt and ground pepper

Boil your potatoes until fork tender...please do not over cook. When cooked...drain and place on a plate to cool.Put the onions in a large pan and scald them briefly in boiling water.Drain the onions well from the boiling water...and then rinse onions under cold water. Drain well again. Peel and slice your boiled potatoes...set aside. Put a mixture of the butter...and oil into a large heavy frying pan and heat until hot. When the butter and oil are hot...fry the onion until tender.Add the sliced potato slices and brown the onions and potatoes together...turning to brown evenly. Transfer to a warmed serving dish and season with salt and pepper. Serve very hot.

Eat with gusto this dish on St. Patrick's Day.

Blessings,
Victoria

Thursday, February 26, 2015

FEMININE LIVING TRADITIONS FOR YOUR HOME...HEARTH... AND HEART MARCH 2015

March musings...

The month of  March marks a change of seasons...letting go completely of the long Winter cycle...and welcoming the return of the Spring season...the cycle of hope...new birth...and new beginnings.

It is the season for you to try new things...to set into motion something better and more loving for yourself...and to completely reinvent yourself...if need be. Or to simply open yourself to that something "more" you have always wanted to do or express...just waiting for the right moment.

This is the process I am experiencing right now...it is time for me to begin some projects that I have long wanted to share with you...that I believe will benefit you and your loved ones...to help you live a more balanced... creative and resourceful life...as well as... giving you a monthly guide to restore a deeper sense of well-being...and harmony in your daily living. It is also the perfect season...to bring all my creative pursuits... that I have learned and practice myself...in a complete venue for you... so you can have...easy access...and use.

I will continue to bring you world traditions...and ones that I create myself...for you to enjoy and practice here on my blog...and on my FB pages. My web site will still offer you my e-courses that you can order...for when you are experiencing life changes and transitions...as a woman...and my consultations for herbal bridal showers and milestone birthday celebrations will remain. My on-line shop...will also change and have a new beginning...that you can read about at the bottom of this post. As you can see...many of my services will remain the same...I am just adding "more"...services to assist you in living a more gentle...orderly...and hopefully...meaningful life. To find out what my "more" is just continue reading.

As most of you know...whether personally...or by following  my blog posts...I am a firm and dedicated believer in the power of traditions...and the importance of keeping all those timeless traditions that help all of us...celebrate life... as well as give us joy...and bond the human family together.

But perhaps you didn't know I believe just as strongly...that in order to live a more balanced...natural...and healthier way of life...following the flow of the changing seasons of Mother Nature...is how I live my life...and have for many years. It just makes good ole common sense. Seasonal living is not new...actually it wasn't that long ago...that all of our family ancestors practiced the following of the changing seasons...because they understood the wisdom of nature...and knew they needed to take heed to the teachings of the changing seasons...to not only thrive...but to survive. Although technology is a good thing...it has also pulled us away on so many levels...from natural ways to live our lives...that humans actually need to be happy...experience good health...and emotional well-being. Fortunately...many really informative books are being written today about the return of living with the seasons and why humanity needs to once again embrace this ancient wisdom. Here are a few book titles to get you started in the right direction for your own personal study and knowledge. STAYING HEALTHY WITH THE SEASONS by Elson M.Hass M.D. and SEASONS OF CHANGE by Caroll McClelland. These are just a few of the books I studied when I was seeking a more peaceful and fulfilled life...as well as a more balanced and healthier way of living.

It is because I believe from my own experience and my positive results from following the changing seasons...my new beginning...is that I want to share with you "more"... of my tips and creative ideas ...for seasonal living...and make it more of a focus here on my blog...weaved together with my traditions.


When you follow the changing seasons...you open yourself to the teachings of nature...and flow with the natural rhythms of life itself. You will know when to start projects and when to let go...as nature mirrors back to you...what to do. The Spring is the season to create new beginnings...the Summer brings growth to you...the gentle Fall cycle...nudges you to let go...and the Winter season...brings rest and deep renewal to your spirit. Seasonal living...fits in with all areas of your life...knowing what seasonal foods to buy... to save money and eat healthy...recipes to cook seasonal foods...homemaking tips for the season...seasonal herbs and essential oils to use...and personal traditions and celebrations of the season to help you grow and connect with your inner spirit. It is my heart felt wish... that you can benefit from my bits and pieces of seasonal living tips...that I have studied and practiced for many years. I will be offering you other options to learn how to practice seasonal living...as the year progresses... and I will post my new options for you...when they are ready.

Seasonal living and traditions go hand in hand for a well lived life... so I feel my web site needs to have a new name...to resonate with it's changes and new services... that I will be offering to you beginning this month. I will post the new name for my web site...very soon...so be sure to check back to my blog now and then for the new name.

And...as part of my expressing and sharing the "more" of my creative self...my on-line shop...Feminine Chic Boutique...is also getting a new name...and will no longer feature my handcrafted products...but instead...will be featuring small...unique antiques and home goods from Europe...as well as locally purchased items for my shop...for you to purchase...as I want to support local antique dealers and their lovely stores. The antiques and home goods...I will be featuring in my shop will change with each season...to give you options for your seasonal home decorating.

I want to close my post here...by thanking each one of you who take the time to read my monthly blog...for your support and your interest in what I share here on my blog. I look forward to sharing my new options for you to live a more balanced...simple and life affirming way of daily living...celebrating traditions and embracing seasonal living...for a well lived life.

To the ever changing seasons,
Victoria

WORLD TRADITIONS AND CELEBRATIONS FOR MARCH...

March 1st...52nd Anniversary of The Peace Corps...March 8th..International Woman's Day...March 17th...St. Patrick's Day...March 20th...The Spring Equinox



DO YOU KNOW?

In the early Roman calendar March 1st was the New Year


FOLK LORE ABOUT MARCH

' March winds and April showers bring forth May Flowers'


FULL MOON... is March 5th



IRISH BLESSING

May your neighbors respect you,
Trouble neglect you
The Angles protect you
And heaven accept you



FEMININE LIVING TRADITIONS


...FOR YOUR HOME

Nothing says Spring than a clean...tidy and well ordered home. Start with just one room at a time...and do deep cleaning...including washing the blinds...or curtains and windows. Regular white vinegar cleans windows and mirrors perfectly...just pour vinegar in a small container...and then take a soft clean cloth or even paper towels...dip into the vinegar and proceed to clean windows...and mirrors. They will be so clean!

Try just placing fresh flowers in whites...yellows...and peach colored stems...in each room of your home...this says instant Spring season...and really is a simple but beautiful way to decorate your home for this season.

For a wonderful and healthy alternative to standard soap for bathing...purchase organic goat milk soap instead...good for you...your family and the Earth...and goat milk soap will make your skin silky smooth.


...FOR YOUR HEARTH

To me...eggs are perfect for a Spring...lunch or dinner...as eggs have long been a symbol of new beginnings and fertility. It is rather fun to eat food that is steeped in history and in mythology...so as you shop...prepare...serve and eat these ever so good eggs...imagine the eggs are bringing you good fortune and a fresh start in your life. What do you have to lose?

CREAMY SCRAMBLED EGGS WITH SMOKED SALMON
serves 1

3 eggs
1 tablespoon butter unsalted
1 tablespoon cream or whole milk
1 slice of smoked salmon
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
sprig of fresh parsley to garnish
hot toast to serve

Whisk the eggs in a bowl together with the cream or milk...add a generous amount of black pepper and a little salt to taste. Next melt the butter in a pan...and when the pan is warm...and the butter until melted... then add the egg mixture and gently stir until the eggs are softly scrambled. Serve immediately...after placing smoked salmon next to the eggs...and garnished with the parsley. Serve with hot buttered toast.


...FOR YOUR HEART

This month...plan family outings to a nearby park...and experience a good old-fashioned picnic...that includes fried chicken and deviled eggs.

Save stale bread crumbs...bread crusts...and crackers and go feed the ducks.

Go to a toy store...and buy a bag of JACKS...a good old fashioned game...that never goes out of style... be sure you play too...this game will rekindle that playful child within you!


Sunday, February 15, 2015

TRADITIONS THAT NURTURE


One of my intentions with my business that focuses on traditions and seasonal living...is how to guide you month by month...on how you can live a more simple...resourceful...and meaningful life by living by the seasons... and celebrating your life and those you love...with traditions.

More and more of us are understanding the necessity of doing it ourselves...and the pleasure of handcrafting products for our homes...family body care...for our food preparation and eating...and to give as gifts.

The tradition of handcrafting is making a huge come back...not only because it is an inexpensive way to achieve quality products...but because it feeds our souls...and our human need to make something worth while...useful and beautiful with our very own hands.

Keeping in mind that February is the month to clean out...clear out...and cleanse for the coming spring cycle...below is a simple but high quality body scrub...that you can make in minutes...and for mere pennies for yourself...your family and to give as a nurturing gift.


EXFOLIATING BODY SCRUB

1 tablespoon sea salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon honey
2-3 drops of rose... sage  or juniper...  essential oil

Mix all ingredients in a small glass bowl...to make a runny paste. Use in your bath or shower.

If you have any leftovers...place in a small glass bottle with a lid.

To make as a gift...mix all ingredients... doubling the recipe when needed...place in a pretty small bottle...tie with a ribbon...and then place a tag with the ingredients and how to use tied to the ribbon.


Enjoy,
Victoria

P.S. Use recycled bottles and jars to store your body scrub in. You can purchase essential oils at any health food store or purchase from an organic herb company...just make sure it is pure essential oil without fillers.  I like to purchase mine from www.mountainroseherbs.com

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