Photo above: listening to bird talk

Food and Nutrition …

Another gorgeous November day set the tone for our outing. Since our morning had a late start, we went right away to the garden to gather greens for our lunchtime salad. As anticipated, we found plenty of miner’s lettuce (Claytonia perforiata), chickweed (Stellaria media) and Lacinato, fondly known as dinosaur kale. Laureli was on an additional quest for smoothie greens so we added parsley and tender dandelion leaves to our harvest as well.

Today’s main topic was eating seasonally. Locally-picked, in-season foods are astoundingly delicious. Letting the harvest guide our menu adds an element of surprise and often delight to what we prepare. Half an hour after harvesting, we were in the kitchen making lunch. Our November salad uses some unusual greens; miner’s lettuce and chickweed are thriving in this weather, and kale is just hitting its stride as a winter salad green.

As Felicity washed and spun out the greens, Laureli worked on Nana’s super-quick, super-tasty way to dress a salad. She measured 2 tablespoons organic olive oil and 1 tablespoon well-aged balsamic vinegar into a large bowl (that has a tight-filling lid), then emulsified it with a fork. Into the bowl went the chickweed, miner’s lettuce and kale. Last step – snap on the lid then gently swirl, shake and rotate the salad for a minute or two so that all the dressing is distributed.

We divided the greens onto plates and continued the artistry by adding grated raw carrot and a smaller amount of grated raw beetroot, both fresh root vegetables appropriate for a November salad. Roasted pumpkin seeds and a garnish of carrot, Jerusalem artichoke and parsley made the salads picture perfect. A side of pistachios and Papa’s contributions – grilled chicken, and apple cinnamon kombucha – completed our colourful and deeply satisfying lunch.

Honey Do …

Our twenty minute task was to empty, wash and sort one silverware drawer and one utensils drawer. With three of us working at it, we were done in no time and now the drawers are crumb-free. So good.

Paper crafts …

I showed the girls the inspiration for our project for this afternoon – corner bookmarks using scrapbooking supplies and cardmaking skills. Thanks, Joanne! Looking through all the lovely papers and findings, the girls quickly came up with ideas for beautiful designs.

Out into Nature …

We finished the day with a hike though our Cedar Springs community acreage. Armed with a web-sweeping stick to lead the way, we explored Spiderweb Cedar Cave Trail, Upper Waterfall Trail and a quick side trail up the hillside to Springwater Pond. Throughout our walk, we couldn’t help stopping to marvel over the many varieties and sizes of fungi that have popped up after the rains. Autumn delights!

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