Boosting Your Immunity: Mushroom Soup with Herbs

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 Written by Meg Dickey, Contributing Writer Our Valley finally began it’s annual cooling trend last week. After several months of nearly 100 degree heat, we were able to enjoy a rainstorm, complete with chilly temperatures and a delightful nip in the air. Along with those blissful breezes come the sniffles and sneezes… when we start to feel like we’re running down, I like to put a pot of this luscious soup on to simmer.  It does a wonderful job of soothing sore throats, boosting […]

Gardening with Herbs 101: Preserving Your Herbs

Written by Meg Dickey, Contributing Writer Last time we talked about how to harvest your herbs – now that you’ve harvested them, what are you going to do with them? Here are my favorite ways to preserve herbs for out-of-season use: Freezing This method best preserves flavor.  Rinse the herbs and chop coarsely.  Place about 1-2 teaspoons in each compartment in an ice cube tray.  Cover with chicken stock, olive oil, or plain water and freeze.   Transfer frozen cubes to Ziplock bags for longer […]

Gardening with Herbs 101: Harvesting Your Herbs

Written by Meg Dickey, Contributing Writer Our weather may not be showing signs of Autumn, but our plants and gardens are certainly indicating it is time for harvesting! If you have been consistently using your herbs throughout the summer, you may not feel you have many to preserve for the winter season (my catnip has been well-used this year, and I won’t be saving hardly any!).  However, you certainly don’t want to wait until the first freeze to start harvesting your herbs! You can begin […]

Preserving the Harvest: Sweet Fruit Chutney

by Meg Dickey, Contributing Writer Summer, and the fruit it brings, has a way of overwhelming many of us. If you’ve got a pile of peaches, plums, nectarines, apricots or any other kind of fruit sitting in the middle of your table, you need to figure out a way to deal with it!  One of the reasons I love this recipe is that it not only lets me preserve a little taste of ripe fruit for a few months, but it adds great probiotics to […]

Sunburn Soothers: Herbal Remedies for Summer’s Ailments

Written by Meg, Contributing Writer Herbal Remedies for Sunburn Once your skin is burned and there’s no turning back (or when your skin has been overexposed to hot, drying sun and wind or chlorinated swimming pools), use the same herbs, essential oils and vitamins (this link actually gives new customers a $10 credit!) recommended to treat any injured skin. My first choices are lavender, aloe vera and calendula to repair damaged skin cells. The essential oil of geranium has skin-rejuvenating properties that encourage healing. Expensive, but exquisite […]

Simple Summer Herbs: Refreshing Infusions

By Meg Dickey, contributing writer Behold the flowers that deck the field, The gentle breeze perfuming And tender herbs their fragrance yield Are health and life diffusing. ~Harvard Shaker Community Herb Catalog, 1843~ For some of us, the tantalizing breezes of summer are already wafting over our gardens.  As the days warm and the herbs in our gardens increase in size and production, there’s not better time to indulge in a pitcher of iced herbal tea, or herb flavored water kefir. There are some standard […]

Waste Not, Want Not: Lessons in Frugality for Children

Written by Meg Dickey, Contributing Writer As we seek to train our children well, one of our family’s major learning points is to teach our children the art of frugality.  Frugality is making good choices with the resources God has given you – this includes your brain, as I am apt to remind my children. :-) I have heard many times from other parents, “I just want my kids to have the best I can give them.”  OF COURSE! We all desire our children to […]

Adding Seafoods to Your Diet

Written by Meg Dickey, Contributing Writer When Dr. Weston A. Price traveled the world examining primitive cultures, one of the first things he noticed was the great lengths the people went to in finding nutrient dense foods.  One of the most desired of these nutrient dense foods were sea foods. Dr. Price noted that those who consumed seafood had the thickest skulls and the best bone structure of all the populations he studied. Sea foods aren’t just fish – they can include roe (fish eggs), […]