Friday, February 7, 2014

The Northwest Flower & Garden Show (Photos)

For ideas, inspiration, and some good time we went to the Garden Show in Seattle.


Everyone needs a place to rest in privacy of a garden. Why not make it gorgeous? 


You would not believe what those flowers were made off. I didn't. Metal!



Glass. Bamboo shoots were made of glass too.


More glass.


And some more glass. 
After all, this city is famous for it's glass work (think Chihuly).



I'd like to model my garden around a round table. 
I think it's cozy.



How about a salmon as a garden decor? Very Northwest... 


Or three little frogs? 


I would definitely find a place in my garden for this goat family.


Another charming set, overlooking the Pike street and Puget Sound.


And the star of the show was this fountain, attracting a big crowd: everyone wanted to spend more time watching it. Somehow water, running in two different directions, had a powerful calming effect. Despite a background noise of the Convention Center, this spot was quiet and relaxed. 

Have a nice and relax weekend, my friends!

See you,
Marina

Thursday, January 23, 2014

My Bare Garden

Three apple trees and two black currant bushes planted.  

Tool of the "trade": soil is a solid rock...

I definitely needed something green for my eyes.

A walk in a park was a perfect alternative to my bare garden.


A big fat squirrel. Do you think she noticed me?

Happy ducks. I like how they all have one foot off the ground. 


A drinking duck...


A thinking "to-jump-or-not-to-jump" duck...

Then back to my garden to plant a cherry tree. 



And that's all for today, my friends. 

Or, maybe just one more picture. :)

Mt.Rainier. January 2014


See you, 
Marina

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Hello From The Pacific NorthWest

Interesting cloud formation above the Mt. Rainier. January 2014

Dear friends, 
I have received many e-mails asking me if I took time off from blogging, and when I am coming back. Those questions made me think whether I want to blog at all and if yes, then what direction would I go. And at this time I don't have a clear answer for myself and for you.

As you know, blogging is a full time job if you do it every day. My full time job during this transition after moving from Arkansas to Seattle is my family. A month ago we bought a house and are settling in, so here comes another unpacking. :)

Blogging brings a lot of joy to me, and to my friends and family. But there is a drop of negativism here and there coming from unhappy people in comments and e-mails. That is definitely not what I want on my blog. And while I try not to take it personally, it still makes a small scratch on my heart. My blog is to connect with my family and friends, and if someone doesn't like it then don't come. But if you came and decided to stay, be kind and positive. As simple as that. 

At this point I don't know if I want to blog the way I did before. Most likely I will post more photos (per my family's request), slightly less words and recipes, although I do have a few specific requests that I will honor. 
We shell see where this road would take us...

Another cloud forming on Mt.Rainier. January 2014

This one is for my family: on American Lake. January 2014

Thank you all for visiting my blog! :)

Be kind, be gentle, be nice... 
Marina

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Warm Kale and Roasted Corn Salad For The National Kale Day


Did you know that today is the Queen of Greens (a.k.a. kale) Day? 
I didn't... until I opened the Facebook and there it was - The National Kale Day! Even more, it's Inaugural Kale Day, and one more reason to celebrate. As a big kale lover I couldn't ignore it. 
I love kale in any form (except overcooked) and shape. I was chewing on my kale chips when I learned about the kale day. Every day is a kale day in this family. Some like it more (me), some eat it in salads without even noticing that it's a kale salad (my husband), and some don't care much about green leaves at all but eat it hidden in their foods (my kids). Kale salads, kale smoothies, kale micro greens, baby kale, kale soups, kale burger, and many other kale meals are made in my kitchen on a regular basis at any given season. When I started my blog I dedicated Tuesday to all things kale, and called it Kale Tuesdays. That's how much I love kale! I also love bitter melon (speaking of my taste!) but that's another story.  :)
This time of the year, when warm days are rare and sun is behind clouds most of the time in rainy Seattle, we like to make warm salads, and kale is one of the best greens for that as it keeps it's crunchiness and shape. Oh, and delicious too! 



Warm Kale and Roasted Corn Salad

Ingredients:


  • 1 cup corn 
  • 1 bunch kale (or two generous handfuls of baby kale)
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 lemon (juice and zest)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon Liquid Smoke
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • salt to taste


If using kale leaves, tear it off a stem and into a bite size pieces. Wash, and dry it in a salad spinner or pat dry it with a towel.

Wash, cut, pit and mash an avocado. Mix it with a lemon juice.

Place the kale leaves in a large bowl,  and gently massage the avocado mash into the kale leaves. Set aside.

Mix corn with a smoked paprika, olive oil and liquid smoke, sprinkle with a pinch of salt and place it on a baking sheet. Turn your oven to a broil and place the baking sheet with corn on a top rack. Broil for 5 to 8 minutes (until corn has some chars on it). 

Immediately stir the broiled corn  in the kale-avocado mix, toss it well with red pepper flakes and lemon zest, and add salt to your taste. 

This salad is often our dinner, lunch, or snack. It's quick, easy and so good for you! 

Also, from now on The National Kale Day will be celebrated every year on first Wednesday in October. Yey to Kale!

Are you on a Team Kale? 
What is your favorite kale dish? 

See you,
Marina