Monday, February 20, 2012

Hello Again! (Herbed Chevre Spread)

Ever procrastinate something to the point that you suddenly look at the calendar and find out that it's been months since you last tended to that "something?" July 8, 2011 was my last post, so I guess I'd better get busy here and give you all some motivation for projects to take on this spring. You won't believe what I've been up to!

Our Katie, Arrived October 1
August found me enrolling in the Master Gardener Program through Clemson University Extension Service. You can read about that HERE. I made 26 new friends and gained a heck of a lot of knowledge of growing and pruning just about anything anyone would want to put in their yard here in South Carolina. It was intensive study and memorization, and I pretty much lived and breathed plants, landscape design, irrigation, etc., for 12 weeks. My new friends and I graduated together on November 8th, and now we're embarking on community service projects throughout three counties. More on that in future posts, and you can chart my progress as I develop a vegetable garden program for the residents of our local Boys' Home. My garden club and our 4H clubs are going to be working with me on that project.

On October 1st, someone threw a sweet boxer out at our farm, and she quickly adopted us and moved into our home. We've never had a boxer before, but we sure are glad to have her. Yes, she always sleeps with her little pink tongue hanging out!

The short, wet, and cold days of winter kept me inside, and I had time to do some sewing for the house. I re- covered chair cushions in the sun room and completely changed all the textiles in the master bedroom and in one of the guest rooms. I threw a huge weekend-long party for my mother-in-law for her 80th birthday over the Labor Day weekend. That took some planning! I went to an Ikebana work shop and fell in love with this style of Japanese flower design, so I bought some books and have been joyfully practicing and learning the rules. In November, I traveled to Atlanta to spend a week with my mother-in-law after she broke her wrist, and that was a truly special time for me because we had the opportunity to reconnect without the usual distractions. We cultivated the seeds of friendship and shared experience, and I learned many things about her  family that were new to me.

Garden Club and Master Gardener activities have kept me busy but, now that the spring flowers are blooming and the soil is warming, I'm back in the garden and thinking about my blogging friends and sharing things with you, so here I am. I hope you haven't forgotten GG and I look forward to doing projects together in the coming weeks.

I just did a "cooking with herbs" program for my garden club. I always like to share a recipe with you, so here's an easy one. If you have fresh herbs, use them. If you don't, then dried herbs will do or, do as I do at times, and use a combination. We love goat cheese (chevre) but this recipe will work just fine with all cream cheese. Enjoy!

Herbed Chevre Spread

2 cloves garlic, pressed
8 ounces goat cheese, room temp
8 ounces cream cheese, room temp
½ cup chives, chopped
½ cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
3 tablespoons fresh basil, minced, or 1 tsp. dried

Combine all ingredients. Press into crock or mold and chill. Serve with crackers or as a spread for tea sandwiches.


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