Elephants, Sprouts, a New Chindi, Garden Planning, and My Vegan Anniversary: A Purposeful Start to 2017

Spicy Green Bean in Glastonbury is an awesome, funky space that serves what I have decided is the best veggie burger in Connecticut. Amazing Boho atmosphere here.

Tibetan goor goor cha. I kept the tea kettle on all weekend and sipped hot goor goor cha from morning to night.

We harvested the pineapple from our old pineapple plant, and the plant’s crown is now suspended in water. Hoping it will sprout roots and we will have a clone of the parent plant.

We enjoyed a wonderfully quiet, intimate New Year’s weekend. There were naps every day, lots of time with the pups, hugs and kisses, and much good food. I spent Saturday afternoon with my best pal Sunny, and discovered an amazing eatery that meets all my needs in a place for great grub and fascinating atmosphere.

My husband and I picked and ate the pineapple from our old plant, and are now trying to germinate the crown and have a new pineapple plant to love. Got lots of indoor gardening work done; tossed the plants that died (including the Meyer lemon, but which I didn’t ditch – it’s in the hospital hoping for a resurrection), found that the wisteria seeds had germinated, potted up one Thai Black Stem banana tree in a bigger vessel and put it in the kitchen, and moved the Basjoo banana trees together into one large pot. The pomegranate seeds I planted a few weeks ago also germinated. And the giant, mutant avocado pit that a friend gave me from her lunch has put out a fat root.

My husband built closet shelves for the cookware that was cluttering the kitchen cupboards. We took down our Christmas decorations, except for the Moravian star outside by the front door. It glows so warm and beautifully after dark, and is so simple and geometric, that I think we’ll keep it around through winter. I roasted root veggies every day, ate a lot of beets, watched football, meditated, listened to great music, and read a good book.

Rohinton Mistry is my current favorite contemporary author. I’m reading Swimming Lessons: Stories from Firozsha Baag, a collection of shorts that are set in an apartment building in Mumbai and revolve around the residents’ lives there. Short stories are quick and satisfying. Sometimes, I just feel like enjoying a tale from start to finish in 25 pages instead of 500.

I also got back into using my neti pot this weekend. Pretty much everyone I know is sick and snorky now. My colds always settle in as sinus infections. Sinus infections make me utterly miserable. My last one was 3 years ago, and I will never forget it. Last week, I was getting a bit congested. I right away went into Rambo mode and started using the neti every single day.

Without missing a beat, we started discussing the 2017 food gardens. A few decisions were made. We will not be growing melons this summer. As satisfying as it is to grow our own, good, organic melons are plenty affordable in summer, and last summer, we couldn’t eat enough of our homegrown (as hard as we tried) to make the effort worthwhile.

We will have a raised bench, greens garden just outside the kitchen door. We’re thinking 6 feet long by 3 feet wide, at waist height, set aside for Italian parsley, arugula, and lettuces. This will make grabbing greens for salads, sandwiches, and smoothies easier. Sometimes, I go for greens 10 times a day in summer, and trudging down to the gardens each time is a pain.

With all the space the melons would have used, we’re going to try two Asian veggies that we’ve never tried before. I’m poring through the Kitazawa seed catalog for ideas.

Yesterday, January 2, I celebrated an anniversary. On June 2 of last year, I transitioned from a vegetarian diet to an Ahimsa vegan lifestyle. I’m not going to preach here: let’s just say that it was the best choice I ever made. I celebrated with a massive bowl of roasted bok choy and beets with hot cous cous. Yummmmm. So thankful.

One of my awesome Christmas gifts was a beautiful chindi made from recycled materials – namely, colorful old saris and used hemp. Since a chindi is used as a floor pillow, I placed it in the living room. The dogs promptly adopted it as a big, comfy bed. My beautiful little floofers.

I also received a large (15-inch) stone elephant sculpture from Thailand. Everyone who knows me knows that elephants are my spirit animals. They embody my two favorite qualities - strength and compassion. I would take a bullet for an elephant any day of the week. I love this sculpture. Even as I’m purging material things from my life at a dizzying rate, I know this will not be one of them. It gives me joy whenever I look at it. Total keeper.

Why am I buying wheatgrass powder for smoothies when I could easily sprout my own super-fresh, nutrient-packed wheatgrass on the kitchen counter? I answered that question this weekend by starting a tray of wheatgrass sprouts. Sprouting is so easy. I have no idea why I didn’t think of this a long time ago. Next up: fresh barley sprouts.

Live in peace.

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