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Green Holidays Recap

Recycled farmer’s market Halloween decor used by Melissa and Gigi for the beautiful Thanksgiving dinner center piece

An all inclusive stuffing! We put a veggie, gluten free spin on a traditional dressing recipe (in the making above) so my dad and Julia didn’t miss out! I grabbed gluten free bread from Free Bread in NYC and brought it home with me on the train to Boston. We got our turkey from Bonji’s – a really great local family farm in Duxbury. Here’s the recipe I used for my first time cooking a turkey!

I made the annual ginger bars for my holiday gifts- but this time cut them into smaller “ginger bites” so they would fit in coffee bags made from recyced paper. I reused some felt ornaments to make the gifts look a little less earthy crunchy and a little more holiday. Also made trail mix madeline bark (above on the right – my own concoction) by melting chocolate and pouring it into a madeleine tray, then sprinkling trail mix on top.

It was my goal  to not buy any wrapping paper. Turns out, at the end of most rolls of wrapping paper there are a couple sheets of brown paper. It usually just gets thrown away so I asked friends and family to donate theirs to me. It’s kinda tough to work with, but worth the effort! We had a whole spool of twine left that we bought to tie the Thanksgiving turkey with, so I used that to tie the gifts. They looked like old packages with a couple little girly touches. The present above was my mom’s “doomsday” battery powered LED lantern she asked for (yes the quote is dorky, but so fitting!)

Finally, the trees. This year our NYC and Marshfield trees were  locally grown. And some of our best trees yet! The photos above are the first taken with my new camera! A fantastic Christmas present from my family. Speaking of family ……….

They really are the best part of the holiday! My cousin Julia took the picture in the middle of my grandmother. It’s one of my favorite photographs.


Happy New Year!

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Green Birthday » Considerable Trouble & Considerable Joy - […] The Sweet Shop. When her birthday came around it was a good opportunity to bring back some of the green gifting tips from Christmas – recycled paper, the box my macbook air came in (which might have gotten her hopes up a […]

John Wilpers - Lovely post! Great photos (your new camera is amazing) and great ideas — my favorite is your commitment to not use wrapping paper! Those brown packages with the little silver stickers were actually exquisite in their own way! Well done! Great post to close the year and launch the new one!

Early Morning, Late Season Harvest

“Ready to eat in 24 days!” The packet said. “Easy plant for kids to grow!” The packet said. Well, 40 days later my Cherry Belle radishes are…cherry. But bell shaped? Not so much.

Not gonna lie, no idea what happened. Right after the “blizzard” I thought, I should probably harvest those guys. I read somewhere (can’t remember exactly where now) that you shouldn’t leave them in the ground for too long. So bright and early, bundled up and excited, I leaned out my window to harvest my tiny fall garden.

My initial reaction was to keep digging deeper into the pot. The perfect farmer’s market-ready ones are down there somewhere! Then my fingers hit clay and I realized….nope. I was bummed. But then I think I did what any first time gardener would do with their sad little crop. I ate the damn things. 
Four little radishes. Three little rabbit bites each. Gone. That was breakfast that morning. And I have to say, they were peppery and awesome! The first food I’ve ever grown. And made my Mike eat. At 7:30 a.m.

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Frankenstorm and Halloween

Our Sandy story

WARNING: cooped up in a house with 3 cats for 2 days. Lots of cat pictures ahead. :-/

Monday 8:00 a.m – Walk down to the water to check out the storm coming in. The river began to rise.

Monday 11:00 a.m – “I’m not going down with the rest of you!” – Drama claims his provisions before the storm

Monday 1:00 p.m – Studying/decorating for Halloween. Two birds, one stone in the skeleton’s case.

Monday 4:00 p.m – Wind picks up. Lights flicker. Books to choose from if the power goes out – finally diving into the Edible Selby – headlamp ready.

Monday 8:00 p.m – Glass on the windows flex and bend against the wind. Trees outside are dancing. Facebook updates keep us informed about friends in the city.

Monday 10:00 p.m – Put my own spin on a storm worthy Sweet Potato Spice soup from Healthy Helping. Put the original recipe on the facebook page a while back, saying I wanted to try it when the weather got colder ….. I guess a massive hurricane/blizzard will do. Added some sweet sausage , okra, red peppers, quinoa. Ended up with a little nor’easter stew.

Monday+Tuesday – Taking cover!

Wednesday 5:00 p.m – Washington Heights tries to get back to normal. Buildings are still boarded up, sandbags surround the hospital, and lines for the buses stretch around the block. But the princesses are out and ready for candy! Leave it to the kids to get us back on track.

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admin - Thanks for checking out the blog! We did get some snow here. It was pretty tough on those still without power and worse for some without homes. We have been very lucky to live in the Heights. The damage here has been minimal.

Autism Signs - Hope all is well. Did you get that terrible snow this past week? Sure hope you didn’t, that just would be even worse for all those already who have had enough.

TED Talk – Fighting Food Waste

So nutritionally, dark leafy greens are the best. Keeping them from going bad before you figure out what to do with them can be trouble. When the West Harlem CSA gives us kale, spinach, arugula, cabbage, and boston lettuce we are definitely in trouble. Mike doesn’t really eat salad and I am only one woman. The saddest thing is to look in your fridge and find that the kale you kept telling yourself you would definitely get around to using has decided it would rather die.

So when I was listening to Tristam Stuart’s TED Talk on The Global Food Waste Scandal, I felt personally responsible. Even though he’s talking about food industry waste – restaurants, farms, grocery stores, etc. – the whole time I just kept thinking of our lettuce failure. It’s all my fault.

Towards the end, Stuart does touch on household food waste. And he actually had a great suggestion for keeping leafy greens alive – treat them like cut flowers. Of course! Ugh, why didn’t I think of that sooner?

Stuart did his own little experiment where he kept one head of lettuce in the fridge, one out of the fridge, and one out of the fridge in a glass/bowl of water. The one in water stayed good significantly longer than the others. So I’ve tried it, and it works! There’s only one problem……..

Cats love leaves.

Even in digital – Drama wants to eat the lettuce. So, it’s just a matter of finding a good place to keep the lettuce – i.e setting up a booby trap for your cats/dogs/whatever. Keeping lettuce alive can really live up to the concept of considerable trouble and considerable joy.

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