A quiet day without fanfare or pomp. Just a day at home with each other. Cloudy, drab and cold but we are home. When I stand and look out my kitchen window in the summer the view is green and breathtaking. When I stare out now I see a sleeping world that must be recharging itself in order to give us such a beautiful spring and summer.
We will be changing Zone A shortly. Zone A is the acre around the home and barns. It is the most assessable and where we grow our food and park and walk. There I a field next to the driveway and we are going to take the fence down on the south side closest to the house and move it out into the field more. This will make our zone a bigger and prettier.
We got 10 trees from the Arbor Society which I feel they sent a little too late because they can be planted as long as the ground has not frozen. Our ground froze 3 days after they arrived. They are sitting in a bucket of water now and we are going to plant them in our cloth bags and release them from their pots in the spring to stretch their roots into the soil and hopefully not too many rocks. We got 5 pine trees and Red Buds and Dogwood. I love Dogwoods. They are magical to me because it appears that the leaves and flowers just float. The Dogwood is the Missouri State tree. Anyway, we are going to put the Red Buds and the Dogwood in the new extended yard and the other larger trees lining the fence by the road. Yes, it will be years until they are big enough and we have to protect them from the squirrels and deer, but we will.
We feel so blessed to live here. When we went for a drive this week, I realized that years ago, I wanted to know what the Ozarks looked like because I had never seen them and now, I live here. It is green and humid at times and we love it. I never knew my grandpa was born in the Ozarks but he was. Just 32 minutes away and 25 miles is where he was born. Pretty amazing. Yep, we are blessed.
Today we went to the store to get food and I came away frustrated at the lack of food that is free of all the items we don’t want to put in our body. If I am frustrated after all these years of living this was, I am sure people who are trying to change the way they eat for the first time are also.
Let’s just take two items and try to figure out a better way.
Salad dressings are a big problem because even the ones that claim to be healthy still contain, soybean oil, or canola oil and sunflower oil or safflower oil. I put them in order of their problem to our bodies. Soybean oil is a by product of a huge industry and research continues to show ways it can negatively impact the body. Some of the studies say, it can cause liver damage, insulin resistance and can cause obesity. The reason we stay away from all vegetable oils and especially soy is because of the high amount of omega 6 and the increased inflammation it causes the body. Inflammation leads to heart disease, arthritis, and can cause and advance many common diseases. That is why every time I break down and buy corn chips, for example, I know I am putting additional inflammation in my body.
We must make our own dressing where we can use olive oil or avocado oil. We prefer a light olive oil mixed with balsamic vinegar. Add spices, shake and serve. There are so many flavors to experiment with but use good safe olive oil.
Another item that causes frustration is crackers, cookies, chips or munchies. Whether we are trying to eat well or not there are times when we need crunchy and salty. Today I am making baked tortilla chips. They are soft corn tortillas lightly brushed with olive oil on both sides. Use a pizza cutter to cut into triangles and sprinkled with coarse salt and Italian seasoning. Bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes. Crunchy without the bad oil. Try to find organic corn tortillas or make your own. (A task I have not perfected yet.) These taste amazing.
I have made homemade crackers before with Einkorn wheat and they were pretty tasty.
Don’t forget about popcorn. Air pop is best but we do cook ours on the stove with a combination of coconut oil and olive oil. Lightly salt.
Carrots are crunchy. Cucumbers are crunchy. Mix these with the suggestions above and you will be eating better. Don’t be afraid to sprinkle cheese on your homemade chips or crackers also.