The meandering thoughts of a modern-day hearth witch.

Sunday, 26 June 2011

Hearth and Home // Magick Mojitos

Summer, to me, means BBQs, picnics and any other form of al fresco dining you can think of, preferably with lots of family and/or friends and refreshing drinks a-plenty. Yesterday, we decided to add a little minty magic to our annual family June BBQ and make mojitos. Mmmmm.

For whipping up some of these oh-so-fresh summery cocktails you will need...

* Limes
*Fresh mint sprigs
*Soft brown sugar
* Soda water
* Crushed ice
* White rum (this can be omitted if you're going 'virgin')

You should squeeze the juice of your lime(s) - the quantity you need will obviously depend on the number of drinks you are serving. 

In the bottom of each glass put two teaspoons of the sugar and then pour over your squeezed lime juice. You don't need much, just enough to cover the sugar. 

Next place two or three sprigs of mint (you can leave the stalks for extra minty flavour) and one or two lime wedges in the glass. 

Now you're going to 'muddle'...

You can use the end of a wooden spoon or anything similar you have to hand in your kitchen for this. You basically bash the ingredients in the glass, to release all the minty, limy flavour.

Once this is done, add your crushed ice to the glass, pour a 50ml shot of white rum over the ice, (or not, if you're going alcohol-free) top up with soda water and stir.

Finally, enjoy!

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Three Word Thursday

This I love.

Papercut by Rob Ryan

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Is anyone else as intrigued... this as I am?

What could it all mean? 

Wheel of the Year // Litha Blessings

Blessed Litha everyone. 
Wishing you all a magickal Midsummer Eve!

Midsummer Eve - E.R Hughes

Allotment Tales // Beetroot

 One of the most wonderful things about having an allotment, is the sense of community spirit and generosity it promotes. So far we have been inundated with helpful tips from our gardening neighbours and even had some pumpkin plants donated to our patch. 

This week we have been given a handful of beetroot from one of our co-allotmenteers' early harvest. 

We do have some of our own beetroot growing from seed but, as we only found out we had successfully acquired an allotment in April, we are quite behind many of the others. Hopefully we will have a bunch of our own deep-red roots later on in the season, to return the favour. 

Beetroot seems to be a pretty hardy vegetable to grow - we had no problem with it in a tiny scrap of stony earth last year, although the lack of space did make the beets rather small. It prefers moist, fertile soil and a sunny spot and grows best when seeds are sown directly into the ground from mid-Spring.

As for what to do with it - once you get past the thought of jar upon unopened jar of the pickled stuff - its actually pretty versatile and yummy. Tonight we had ours roasted, with some other veg and cous-cous but you could try it in a warm salad, add it into some brownies, make a delicious, Russian-inspired borscht soup or even add it to some fruit in a nutritious smoothie. Not only does it add a splash of colour to any meal, beetroot is high in nitrates proven to lower blood pressure. See here for more information on the health benefits of this seasonal vegetable.

What are you harvesting and cooking up this week?

Monday, 20 June 2011

Wheel of the Year // Litha

Midsummer - or Litha to many pagans - is the point on the Wheel of the Year where the Sun is at its peak: the Summer Solstice. June 21st marks the longest day in the Northern Hemisphere and it is on this day that many pagans join in celebration of the power of the Sun. Traditionally, many cultures around the world have celebrated this day with feasts, dancing and bonfires - and often weddings - to joyously mirror the energy provided by the Sun at this time. Even today it is a time of thanksgiving for the Sun's warmth and light which enables the Earth to bear fruits.


This Summer season I am thankful for...

* An allotment which is growing beautifully - we are now able to eat what we have sown.
* A long holiday from school, just around the corner, in which I can focus on bringing my personal goals into fruition.
* Being situated in a place where I can see the wheel turning all around me; where the changing seasons are evident with every footstep.
* Time spent with B.
* Being a part of my own friends' celebrations of love and growth, yet to come, later in the Summer season. 

What are you thankful for this Summer?

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Summertime Goals

As you can see, I've already put pen to paper (a ritual which always focusses my mind) in order to extract from the tangled mess of school-work-related-tasks, the goals that I...that's me, myself, I...want to achieve this summer. B and I have also written a list of 'together' goals - fun activities we both want to try together over the summer holidays. That list involves a lot more adventure in the traditional sense: surfing, camping, exploring new places. My list is more about personal, internal journeys and adventures.

It's become really important to me to utilise my school holiday time effectively this summer, particularly as so much of my holiday time in the past year has been taken up with illness and family sadness. This summer I want to make sure some of the little creative tasks I've been meaning to do forever get done - I want to fill my days with things that nurture my mind and soul. 

Things like:

* Finally get round to finishing painting my desk chair and upholstering the seat (this has been part finished for about three years!)
* Get an Instax Mini camera and take lots of fun photos of family and friends
* Use some of the pretty patterned fabric I've gathered over the years to make a book bag. 

But mostly I want to do lots of this...

What are your summertime goals this year?

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Allotment Tales // First Harvests

One of the reasons I haven't been blogging so much lately is that B and I are lucky to have been able to rent an allotment this year and much of our free time is spent down there planting and tending. We are loving it and our first rewards are beginning to be reaped.

With heartfelt thanks to the sunshine and rain. 
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