1
Basil Will Grow If You Clean Your House
2
Best Home Cooked Recipes To Pair With Pinot Grigio Wine
3
All the Spring Vegetables Are Planted!
4
Happy Birthday Xanadu!
5
Roast Pork and Mashed Potatoes
6
Sunday Snuggles With My Crew
7
My Morning Meditation Chill Out
8
2015 Garden Yield Amounts
9
EASY Slow Cooker Black Beans
10
A Trip to Ireland: Cliffs of Moher and the Burren
11
First Vegetables Planted On The Land!
12
Blueberry Whipped Cream Cheesecake

Basil Will Grow If You Clean Your House

Tracking Pixel I believe growing your own food is important so I wanted to help promote this project as home gardening is something I feel strongly about! This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day®.

Yes, you read the title right. If you clean your house, basil will grow.  It’ll be like magic, but not really,  because we all know if magic was involved, our houses would be cleaned without us lifting a finger.

But back to the story.  Basil – don’t you love it?  It smells great, is bright green, looks just as pretty growing in the garden as it does in a mason jar, grows easily and is the best friend for sandwichespasta pesto and pizza recipes.

Aero-Garden-Basil

Basil is such a easy plant to grow in the garden and is pretty resistant to the elements to tear it down.  If you’ve ever grown basil you know how big it can grow.  With just these 2 basil plants, we had basil forever!  Bonus is that if you have too much basil, you can dry it to store in jars (great for sprinkling in casseroles, soups, lasagna, etc).
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Best Home Cooked Recipes To Pair With Pinot Grigio Wine

This post brought to you by Torresella. The content and opinions expressed below are that of http://brooklynfarmgirl.com/.

Here you’ll find the best recipes to pair with Pinot Grigio wine.

With Summer dinner parties on the rise, look no further for the perfect recipes to serve along with Pinot Grigio.  Food and wine are a big part of social gatherings, and if you’re like me, then you love to share food and drink with your best friends and family.  If you need a recipe for a Weekend Brunch, or a Family Dinner, or a Girls Get Together (hello Wine Wednesdays!), then I hope you find these personal recipes below helpful.   Best Home Cooked Recipes To Pair With Pinot Grigio Wine

But before we get to the food, let’s start with the perfect Pinot Grigio. I love Torresella Pinot Grigio.  It has a clean, crisp taste and authentic Italian heritage, making it perfect to serve alongside Summer fresh pasta dishes.   Torresella is also pretty great to the environment. They leverage solar roof panels to self-sustain the majority of their vineyard’s power requirements and employ modern farming and irrigation systems to reduce their environmental impact.   I love when delicious brands can also be environmentally friendly so I wanted to give an extra kudos to them. Best Home Cooked Recipes To Pair With Pinot Grigio Wine

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All the Spring Vegetables Are Planted!

Do you remember a few weeks ago we planted the first (ever!) plants on the land?  Well now all the Spring vegetables are planted!

A week after the first vegetables went into the ground, the broccoli, cauliflower, bok choy and potatoes were planted.  None of it went stress free through.  We are still getting used to our new Upstate growing calendar (much colder than NYC, especially at nights) and with that comes a little heart break.   The weather said we were in the clear at nights, but after everything was planted we had 2 sudden days below freezing which sadly killed a few of the plants.  Thankfully we covered the seedlings up with row cover fabric adding in a extra 4-8 degrees protecting most of them.  Although I don’t want to lose any plants, I’d rather lose 10 than lose 200, so I guess we lucked out as a few other people in town didn’t fair as well.

So now… let’s check out the rest of the plants that will complete the Spring season!

First up, the broccoli.  This year we have a lot of broccoli growing and we’ve grown some of our best looking seedlings ever.  Aren’t they handsome?
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Happy Birthday Xanadu!

Today is Xanadu’s 10th Birthday!  
Happy 8th Birthday to Xanadu Pluto! 8 years ago she came into our lives and it's never been the same since! Love you Xany! #cat #cats #siamese #siamesecat #whitecat #xanadu #birthday #happybirthday #catsofinstagram #cake

Xanadu joined our family when she was 3 months old.  She was a handful from the start.  Everything you read about Siamese cats being cunning, intelligent and vocal are all absolutely true.  This was our first Siamese cat and I remember being shocked by how chatty she was, how her meows sounded like baby cries, and how good she was at problem solving (or starting problems).
Here she is minutes after joining our family.
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Xanadu has seen us go through so much with work and life.  She took care of Essy in her last days and has welcomed 3 other cats into her home (clarification: she does not welcome FiFi Bofinkles into her home – they will never get along).
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Roast Pork and Mashed Potatoes

In just 45 minutes Roast Pork & Mashed Potatoes with Molasses-Stewed Collard Greens will be ready enjoy. Your family will love this classic comforting meal!

This meal reminds me of my childhood on a Sunday.  Sunday dinners were always the most comforting since Mom or Dad had time to relax and take their time in the kitchen.  One of the most popular Sunday meals were pork, mashed potatoes and a vegetable side – my brother loved this!  Now fast forward 25 years and I still love making a classic dish for my family to enjoy.   I made this for Matthew a few days ago and he fell in love with it!

Do you guys know about Blue Apron? If you live in a city you might have seen the blue boxes being delivered to your neighbors.   Blue Apron is a home delivery food service who’s mission is to make incredible home cooking accessible to everyone.   All you do is sign up for the service, tell them how many meals you want a week, tell them any preferences (vegetarian for example) and then your high quality ingredients will be shipped to you, along with a recipe card for you to create at home.  I love this service and I love reading their Facebook page with so many fans saying how now they make home cooked meals during the week instead of take out.  If you want to try Blue Apron, here’s a coupon for $20 off. 

In just 45 minutes Roast Pork & Mashed Potatoes with Molasses-Stewed Collard Greens will be ready enjoy. Your family will love this classic comforting meal!

Blue Apron approaches most recipes as if you don’t have anything in your kitchen.  They send you all the main ingredients, as well as knick-knack ingredients such as molasses, sugar, butter, seasonings, etc.    For this Roasted Pork recipe, you can see below they sent me every single ingredient.  Also I want to praise how beautiful the Collards were and how fresh all the produce was too.  

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Sunday Snuggles With My Crew

It was a lazy Sunday and I was at home alone.  I had work to catch up, emails to write back, and a recipe to make but somehow I couldn’t stop watching Big Love on HBO Go.   Also I couldn’t psychically get up because I was surrounded by my crew, you know, the furry cuddly ones.

Yup, my best buddy cat crew: Brother Bear, Goblin, FiFi Bofinkles, Toes and Xanadu
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Xanadu is the Queen of the house. She lets everyone know by crawling onto my lap, glaring at anyone who looks at her and swiping a paw at them if they try to take her place.
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Queens deserve good chin rubs.
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My Morning Meditation Chill Out

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Folgers. All opinions are 100% mine.

Lately I’ve been dealing with some afternoon anxiety, the kind that creeps up on you suddenly when you’re working too hard, multitasking between jobs forgetting to breathe.    I’ve always done too much for work, and too little for me, so I’m trying to learn a little bit at a time why it’s really important to take a minute and chill.

Last year after coming to the full realization that life isn’t about purely about work (hard to believe, I still struggle with this) I started to try to make more time for myself, even if it meant 5 minutes of sitting in the quiet section of the studio staring at the wall, while doing some simple breathing exercises.   Eventually I started to get to into meditation, where I even participated in a group setting.  I started to explore meditation more, and even though I fell off the wagon for a few months, I’m trying to get back on as it was super successful in helping me deal with stress.   How to Destress In the Afternoon_3

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2015 Garden Yield Amounts

Look at how many pounds of vegetables we grew in our NYC rooftop garden!

I know, I know. It’s May 13th and I’m finally getting around to posting our 2015 garden yield totals.  Sorry for how long it’s taken, but better than never, right?!

Drum roll please….!

In 2015 we grew…

458 pounds of vegetables!

Woah! Double woah! High 5!

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See the full break down behind the cut.

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EASY Slow Cooker Black Beans

EASY SLOW COOKER black beans made with dried beans!  This healthy, vegetarian recipe cooked in the crock pot for 4 hours is so easy and healthy!  Because it uses dried beans it’s cheap to make too! We love serving these beans on flour tortillas for black bean tacos!  It’s one of my families favorite comfort foods!  

I’m guilty of it.  Yup, the big sin.  What’s that you ask? Oh, it’s shameful. Sometimes I buy…. canned black beans.   What’s my excuse?  They’re so easy, all I have to do is take the lid off, heat them up and they’re ready to go.    And yet, that bag of dried black beans sits on the bottom shelf (always) at the grocery store, for half the price and twice the amount and I always look at it for forgiveness “Dry black beans, I’m so sorry, I just don’t have time, I’m so so so sorry”.  Then I throw the canned beans in my cart and run out of the aisle before the dried black beans can look at me again.

Once I started growing our own black beans, I started to see the beauty of dried beans.   The only thing that was holding me back 100% from joining the dried bean team was the overnight soaking, which I almost always can never remember to do (we aren’t a house that plans our meals in advance).  So I came up with this recipe of throwing them in the slow cooker for 4 hours which leads to a yummy bean perfection!  

EASY SLOW COOKER black beans made with dried beans! This healthy, vegetarian recipe cooked in the crock pot for 4 hours is so easy and healthy! Because it uses dried beans it's cheap to make too! We love serving these beans on flour tortillas for black bean tacos! It's one of my families favorite comfort foods!

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A Trip to Ireland: Cliffs of Moher and the Burren

Join me as I take a trip to the beautiful Cliffs of Moher and the Burren!

In early April Matthew and I spoke at the Offset Festival in Dublin. It was lots of fun and we got to meet new friends while being inspired by other creatives.
R+R at Offset Dublin

(It was a big crowd in the beautiful Bord Gáis Energy Theatre.)
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Since we’ve never been to Ireland we wanted to take a day to go outside the city and see the beautiful green countryscapes that you see in postcards.  We took a day bus trip and drove across the country (Ireland is small, it only takes 3 hours to do this) to the Cliffs of Moher and the Buren.

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First Vegetables Planted On The Land!

Watch as we we plant onions, sugar snap peas, cabbage, lettuce, kale and more in the garden!  All plants started from seeds.  Follow along with our Upstate journey here!

This weekend was very exciting because we planted our very first plants up on the land!  If you want to follow along with when we plant, you can find it on the seed calendar.

We’re slowly adjusting to the new seed schedule for Zone 5A.  It feels like we’re planting late since we’re so used to NYC Zone 6B.  This is all going to be a learning experience to figure out when we should plant, probably with some heart break thrown in.    We looked at tens of charts to figure out when was best, and decided to take a chance and plant our more hardy plants that could survive the cold nights.

So on Saturday we planted sugar snap peas, onions, kale, cabbage, brussels sprouts, collards and lettuce!

And before I go any further, here’s a time lapse of the first bed being prepared and the plants going in!  High 5! (I’m exhausted)
Watch as we we plant onions, sugar snap peas, cabbage, lettuce, kale and more in the garden! All plants started from seeds.

We had lots of plants to get planted in one day.  Right now there’s so much to do on the land so we tried to stay as focused as possible to get them all planted.   We were coming back to NYC after planting, so we knew we had to get them in the ground.

Here’s the plants, all grow from seed, under our DIY grow light stand.
Watch as we we plant onions, sugar snap peas, cabbage, lettuce, kale and more in the garden! All plants started from seeds.

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Blueberry Whipped Cream Cheesecake

Enjoy this easy dessert recipe for Blueberry Whipped Cream Cheesecake! This delicious cake has a pretty pastel sprinkled natural topping made from blueberries.  It’s the perfect way to turn a boring cake into a beautiful birthday cheesecake! 

I am in love with this cake, it’s one of those dessert creations where you want to take 50,000 photos of before eating because it’s just that pretty.    Along with the Smooth and Creamy Sara Lee cheesecake, you have a beautiful blueberry Cool Whip topping that’s just waiting for rainbow sprinkles to be added on top.   

Blueberry Whipped Cream Cheesecake - a beautiful and delicious pastel sprinkled cake! The blueberries give the whipped topping it's pretty color.

With Spring filled with celebrations of all kind, birthdays, school graduations and Mother’s Day, this cake is a simple way to make your loved ones feel special.  Keeping these supplies in your freezer is a perfect way to be prepared for a quick dessert cake.  I love that how quick this cake is to whip up, it looks like I was in the kitchen all afternoon making this, but I wasn’t!

Blueberry Whipped Cream Cheesecake - a beautiful and delicious pastel sprinkled cake! The blueberries give the whipped topping it's pretty color.

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