Monday, July 6, 2015

Summer Update! {and a giveaway!}


Summer is here and I hope that everyone is enjoying their summer so far! In B.C. it has been very hot and already the forest fires are burning at a record rate. With watering restrictions in effect and even some areas with fishing restrictions because of drought conditions, it sure has me thinking about how we can be more self-reliant in a remote part of our country.

We love to grow our own food and every winter I plan our garden, order seeds, and start seedlings indoors. We buy some veggie starts too since we don't have a heated greenhouse, and plant more than we probably can eat! 

We have a short but hot growing season in northern B.C. and so there are a few things that seem to do very well here. We have one raised bed of kale, broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbages. These we started in the winter from seed so it is amazing to watch these giants grow and flourish. We also have a large herb garden (which we are using in our restaurant- more about that later!), greens, radishes, beets, carrots, potatoes and under our new cold frame we have peppers, tomatoes, cucs, squash, and pumpkins! We threw some last minute peas and beans in an old garden but I am not too hopeful. It has actually been too hot for them. 

Within a few weeks of planting we started eating. Pictured above is the glorious kale we have. We have 4 plants and they will feed us all summer, plus some frozen for winter. This is a nice, soft, curly variety that tastes great raw in a salad, or roasts up to kale chips nicely. You can see that the girls LOOOOOVE their kale chips. 


Our strawberries haven't come in yet but we are so lucky to have amazing B.C. berries and even local strawberries grown on a nearby farm. But the raspberries and Saskatoon berries are here and plentiful in our forest this year. I picked the first of the raspberries last night and just stood and ate them. It was magical! We will forage for Saskatoons and choke cherries soon and they will be canned and frozen.


We have managed to get out and do some camping already this summer and we have a few favourite spots in Northern B.C. We are lucky enough to have an exceptional provincial camp site 5 minutes from our house. This means I can come home for a shower! Or if we forget anything we can pick it up. But our favourite part is sitting by the fire with hot chocolates and enjoying the fresh air, trees, animals, and the beauty of Northern B.C. (and some Vanilla Bean Mug Toppers too!)

We hope that you are having a wonderful summer and watch here for more summer updates, recipes, and more!

I also thought maybe a giveaway would be nice right about now! I am giving away a 6-pack of Vanilla Bean Mug Toppers! These round fluffy marshmallows are perfect for floating in your hot drink. Simply stop by my Instagram and like, comment, and tag one friend on the giveaway photo (same as above). The winner will be drawn on July 19th!