Today we woke up to drizzle. Seems to be the story of the summer – a handful of blazing hot days followed by a day of light drizzle or full on rain then back to sun. It is actually fine by me. You don’t have to water your garden that way. Plus it gives your skin a little break from the rockin’ tan it is acquiring.
So we headed out, in full rain gear, to waaaaaay back at the far end of the horse pasture and set out onto the trails that my parents have created through the woods. Beautiful trails – I have been walking them in the morning, just me, alone with my thoughts, which is a highly rare affair these days. The trails are actually wide enough and groomed enough to fit our rugged double stroller through, so stroll we did (I am so over carrying around a 22 pound toddler whilst nagging a 40 pound toddler to hurry it up). We found a really magical little spot on the creek – tons of river rocks, logs to climb over and under, little pockets where the water pools up and you can catch a glimpse of the little salmon fry swimming about. We played at this spot for a long while before continuing on in search of huckleberry bushes.
Maya aptly named this spot The House at Maya Corner (gee, I wonder where she got that name!) and quickly reassured It that she would be back soon. It was a pretty enchanting experience actually. I sat there by the creek watching these kids so deep in play in nature and thought, now this is exactly why I wanted to live out here for a little while. Kids are so very happy in this environment. Anyone who has read Last Child in the Woods would contend the more nature time your kids get, the better. And I have to agree. Watching my daughter create her own little world under tree limbs and over creek beds and witnessing my son utterly mesmerized by the rippling water and all of its gifts, is a moment I would love to recreate over and over again. It was peaceful. It was engaging. It was simply captivating. Slowing down and taking a breath of fresh air was good for my soul as well – even if it was interrupted occasionally for mosquito swatting.
Having access to this wonderland every day is going to be so fun.
We finished off the walk with a full-on slip and fall into the second creek (Maya was not too keen on that part – I literally was pouring water out of her boots) and a salamander spotting. I think the salamander saved us from a little meltdown – thank you little guy.
And for lunch, another recipe share:
1 bunch kale, ribs removed, thinly slices
2 small carrots, peeled and julienned
1 red bell pepper, diced (I skipped this one)
2 tablespoons gomaiso (this is REALLY important – do not skip adding this traditional Asian sesame salt – it is what really makes this salad pop. But if you must, as I had to today, just toss in some sesame seeds)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon grated fresh gingerroot
1 1/2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive ol
2 tablespoons tamari (I used soy sauce)
1 4/4 tablespoons brown rice vinegar
1/4 cup toasted pumpkin seeds (skipped this as well)
(I also added a bit of red miso – it was quite tasty)
Combine the kale, carrots, and bell pepper in a large salad bowl.
Prepare the dressing by combining all the dressing ingredients as listed and mix well.
Pour dressing over the kale salad mixture and toss. Let marinate for at least 30 minutes in the fridge. The longer it marinates, the stronger the flavors will be. Add in pumpkin seeds and gomasio before serving, toss and serve.