December Gardens

A beautiful, peaceful, healing garden does not have to be in the dirt.

For dedicated gardeners, earth stewards, and anyone with a true connection to nature….a lovely garden can grow in the mind….and our surroundings…
As the days grow longer and the cold grows stronger….conifers, holly, pine-cones, magnolia gifts and winter-berries bring seasonal cheer that feel as good as shoots of green in the spring beds.
Seed pod-southern magnolia

Secrets of the Magnolia

southern magnoliaseed pod-southern magnolia

The Southern Magnolia is what we know best…pure beauty and charm from the
bark to the pod….each season has its own special offering….spring and summer, amid the dark glossy leaves one can find tiny firmly packed buds that gracefully open into dinner plate size flowers. Nothing, compares to the fragrance of the Southern Magnolia flower.

However, there are many other species of the Magnolia and many other names for them all….Beaver Tree, Holly Bay, Hou Po, Indian Bark, and others…

Magnolia also has a medicinal side…the flower and bark are used to make medicine. Some of the ills the extract is used to treat are…anxiety, depression, stress, stroke, and asthma…among others.

In skin care products, Magnolia is used as a skin whitener.

The chemical found in the bark is honokiol…this is what makes it medicinal.

While the flowers are exquisite…the seed pods get my attention, and if one looks closely at the bark……seems to be a story written in some far away language.

Magnolia seems to have anxiety-reducing activity in animals.

All research on magnolia has been in laboratories.

The Stylish Gardner…more than a look~


The Stylish Gardner is more about a feeling than a look…
it’s about being aware, living with purpose, passion, and intention.
It’s about feeling good, so we do look good…
It’s about having a reserve of energy and enthusiasm…
It’s about finding alternative means to fix small and large issues with out prescription and/or over OTC drugs…

Now we all know the lines drawn between controlled medicine and natures medicine….So…this is where I say, because I must if I wish to keep my neck out of the noose! But also because it makes sense and will in the long-run will save you time and money.
Disclaimer…If you are sick…seek the advice of a qualified health-care provider.

The Healing Power of Trauma Comfrey…this is a small book by Holly Lucille, ND,RN….she is a nationally recognized and licensed practicing naturopathic doctor, natural products consultant and television & radio host.
An acclaimed expert in the field of Integrative medicine. Dr. Holly lectures throughout the nation on a variety of natural health topics.
This book will help you address pain of injuries, sprains, strains, bruising, wounds of all kind, back and joint pain…from old or more recent damage.

It can be found in any good Health Food shop or larger book stores.
The product can be found on many online sites…be very cautious who you purchase from…A good product should be between 14 and 20 dollars for a 2.6 oz tube…maybe a little less…too cheap, look carefully at the ingredients.

(From a report given to me by a doctor I use and trust.)
Symphytum is the homeopathic remedy prepared from the common hedgerow plant…comfrey.Taken orally in its homeopathically prepared and diluted form has a strong reputation for helping to heal fractures, especially those that are slow and difficult to unite.
What is less well known is that Symphytum can also help torn muscles,tendons,and ligaments that are slow to heal…it simply promotes “fusion.”
Works greatly to promote healing in Achilles tendons and meniscus damage and  collateral ligament tears in the knee..
Also works for vertebral fractures/degeneration of the spine, and for trauma or blows to the eyeball and eye socket.


Boiron Labs is the world leader for Homeopathic products.

My go to for many hard to find products are the Orbit Health Food Shops…
One in Goodlettsville, Tn….One in Mount Juliet, Tn.

Entrepreneur Home


Food As Art~

Food As Art

Artful Food

Most famous works of art from nature, tend to be flowers…

Why not vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds…..for some reason that escapes me…food is something we take for granted…spending little to no time admiring the form, the characteristics, or the history.

A Rembrandt from my garden gallery~

Blooms No More~

Blooms No More~

The time is near…summer blooms will begin to fade, late summer early fall colors will take their place in colorful shrubs, trees and grasses.

Utilize the last of the floral beauty by mixing with grass blades, wild branches of green or color…from what is easily available…fill your surroundings with the last of the blooms.

Nothing say’s welcome like fresh nature!

Poison to Obsession~

tomato sandwichtomato sandwichtomato sandwich

Americans may be in love with tomatoes today, but history shows us that the relationship got off to a rocky start.

During Colonial Times, we wouldn’t put a tomato near our mouths, let alone try to eat one. Folklore had it that if you ate a tomato, its poison would turn your blood into acid. Instead, the colonists grew tomatoes purely for decoration.

Great history of the tomato here, it’s a lot!!

History of Tomatoes


My brother and I just had a long conversation about…what else..Tomatoes!!

Today I celebrated the first tomato to ripen in the Sage Hill garden…this year..

That may not be exciting to some, but I’ve had a love affair with these “fruits” since I was a wee lass of 8/9 years old…my mother would save biscuits from breakfast, after school I would take one and head for the tomato patch..( we had a big tomato patch! Sitting in the sun, in the dirt, that was my after school snack!
So now you understand what this sandwich did for me today…brought back a flood of memories and helped we welcome the first day of the Summer Solstice,

It’s going to be a fabulous one!!! Lots more tomatoes to come…
In case you would like to duplicate…

Choice of bread…I like an organic multi grain ( sourdough is good also)
(1) slice of Pepper-jack cheese ( place under broiler and slightly melt
Sliced spring onions-blades too
Thick slice the tomato
A sprinkling of fresh dill weed
Layer, a little sea salt and fresh ground black pepper

I add lettuce and sweet pickles to the side…you may layer them on the sandwich if you like.
You may also add Mayo…I use the cheese to replace the mayo.

Michael Pink…you were in my thoughts while happily consuming every bite!!

Bon Appetite ~

PS: Be aware, every part of the tomato plant except the fruit is toxic to humans and animals.



Friendship And Food~freezer Cole slaw…

Freezer Cole Slaw

Freezer Cole Slaw???   Yep, that was my thought also…

One might think when one has been farming and cooking for a lifetime, nothing new can possible come their way…that would be me….never, have I heard of Freezer Cole Slaw.

I wish to give thanks to my friend Paulette Williams , for turning me on to and sharing her recipe…I’m totally liking this and so…I’m sharing…thanks for your interest and do give us feedback on your degree of liking…..or not!
Freezer (Friendship) Cole Slaw…

Paulette’s recipe is for 2 pounds of cabbage (green or red or mixed)
I chose the green, but will mix it in the next batch.

Enjoy and thank Paulette for being a good food and friendship steward!

2 lbs. cabbage, 1 large green pepper, 3 large carrots and 3/4 cup chopped onion. Shred everything and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt. Let stand 1 hour and drain.

Combine 1 teaspoon dry mustard, 1 teaspoon celery see, 1 cup vinegar, 5% acidity, 2 cups sugar and 1/2 cup water. Bring to a boil and boil 3 minutes. Cool and ladle over cabbage mixture. Let stand 5 minutes.

Stir and pack in containers or freezer bags. Pretty simple. I usually double or triple


(BK) Let me assure you, this is very good!!  Will be amazingly delicious after it blends for a few weeks or until winter!


A Cookie Is A Cookie…Not!

Chocolate Cookies

I love special little stories about family members.

This is the story of my niece, Janet Lynn Woodruff-Gresham….now the mother of two grown daughters , one of whom will be a married woman as of June 11th-2017.
But…back to our Cookie Monster….for years, we all knew not to ask what she was having for breakfast, regardless what was on the menu…yep, you guessed it…Janet had a cookie! Most of the time they were fresh from the oven…and I do recall that wonderful aroma of chocolate chip, hot and gooey and calorie laden…and our family has always been known for skinny women…..some skinnier than others!!

I have mastered some really great healthy cookie challenges…this is one…
It is not Janet’s Chocolate Chip Cookie, however it is delicious and so very healthy…for a cookie!


Black Beauties…

  • ½ cup coconut oil, room temperature
  • ¾ cup coconut sugar
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon Sea salt
  • 2¼ cups (9 oz.) almond flour
  • 1 cup (6 oz.) chopped dark chocolate
  • Sea salt to sprinkle on top (optional)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
  2. Beat together the coconut oil and coconut sugar until smooth. Add the egg and vanilla and mix until smooth.
  3. Add the almond flour, salt, and baking soda to the wet ingredients. Mix until well incorporated. Fold in the chopped chocolate. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour (can prepare up to 48 hours ahead of time).
  4. After refrigerating, use a cookie scoop to form cookies and press down slightly. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt if desired. Bake for 10 minutes or just beginning to turn golden brown around the edges.Yummy for breakfast, brunch or after dinner dessert!