Thursday, March 26, 2015

Looking forward to rhubarb

I derive a lot of pleasure from seeing the first spring growth of perennials. When that perennial is edible, I am nearly obsessed.

Last year we divided and relocated several rhubarb crowns from the "lower" area (down by the river) to the "upper" area (by our house). While I used to do a pretty good job of harvesting all available rhubarb, I am looking forward to 1. more rhubarb, and 2. not having to climb 20 stairs to get it.

divided rhubarb crownKnowing the decision was going to be a fairly permanent one, I chose to plant the rhubarb in an area that needed some foliage, but that I had found to be unsuccessful for growing veggies in previous years. The area has good southern exposure, but sees some animal traffic. I am unsure whether the same animals that enjoy eating tomatoes will enjoy rhubarb, but I figure that if they didn't eat it down by the river, they weren't likely going to eat it near our house...unless they are different animals.

Last year, rhubarb started poking through the leaf cover in late April. I'm looking forward to seeing this year's crop, and how we did in the replanting. We didn't touch the rhubarb last year, as we divided it in the spring. Detailed instructions on division at this blog, which has BEAUTIFUL pics of budding rhubarb.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Beet shake

Beets! I bought some massive, beautiful beets a couple of weeks ago, which have been sitting in my fridge begging me to put in the time and roast them. So today I decided to try Chocolate Covered Katie's Pink Energizer Smoothie.

Delicious. Beautiful and alarming in colour. If I made it again I would reduce the amount of milk, to make a thicker smoothie. Looking forward to trying these this summer, with fresh garden beets.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Reading Ru

Just started reading Ru, by Kim Thuy. The book is most recently the winner of Canada Reads, but is also winner of the Governor General's Award for Fiction in its original French. Its list of accolades is long. Immediately it reminds me of the Autobiography of Red by Anne Carson, in its image-heavy,  prose poem style.

This is one of my favorite styles of writing to read. I find the vignettes more manageable than a conventional novel, in particular when I am reading in short spurts. While there is a narrative flow to Ru, you can read slightly ahead or behind your "place" without compromising the story; as a reader, I like having this extra amount of control over my reading experience. I dislike when I feel locked in to the author's story line, when I have to leave off at a logical spot in order to pick up the book and proceed. These days I don't always have the time to finish a chapter.

Thuy paints very poignant scenes, which, when reading, make me thankful that such moments were captured. I get pretty emotional about good writing, I'll admit. But to me, this is the kind of writing which makes you watch and observe the world around you more closely, realizing that we are constantly moving amid these notable moments.

What else I am reading this month:
  • Improving Your Soil, Keith Reid
  • Bed Timing, Marc Lewis and Isabela Granic
  • Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems, Richard Ferber
  • The No-Cry Sleep Solution, Elizabeth Pantley
  • Canadian Gardener's Guide, Lorraine Johnson (ed)
  • 500 Kitchen Ideas, from the editors of Country Living
  • The Sewing Book, Alison Smith
  • Blind Window, Sleeping Woman, Haruki Murakami