Wednesday, September 9, 2015

A Little Greens For You

MacGyver found a great website, Blue Zones, a couple of weeks ago, after seeing Dan Buettner interviewed on Bill Maher.  Buettner is, among other things, a National Geographic writer who has studied people with longer life expectancies, who live in certain areas, called "blue zones". He has a TED talk I plan to watch. There are so many great, easy to make recipes on this site!

At my first perusal, I saw this salad and right away knew I had to make it.  I had everything except for an avocado in my fridge.

That was an easy enough fix, so we whipped it up in no time and was it ever good.  You can find the original recipe on Blue Zones here.

But here it is with notes as to what we did:

Quick and Easy Lemon and Dill Bean Salad

two 15.5 oz cans of beans, rinsed (equal to 3 cups) (I just used garbanzo, aka chick peas, as that was all I had)
1 medium tomato, diced
1 medium onion, chopped
4 celery ribs, chopped
1 T olive oil
1/2 T lemon juice
cilantro, dill and pepper, all to taste

Optional ingredients:
8-10 cups greens of your choice (I used spinach; they say also arugula or kale)
1 cup broccoli (I had none in)
1/2-1 cup blueberries
1 avocado
1/2 c walnuts (I used pecans)

1.  In a bowl mix together all of the main ingredients.
2.  Add in cilantro, dill and pepper, all to taste.
3.  Put the greens and any or all of the optional ingredients in a large bowl.  Toss in the bean mixture. Serve.

I've been a bit otherwise occupied for the past few days, so I haven't been sewing as much.  My daughter, Brianne, and my beloved grandson, Brady, are here from Alberta for a 10-day visit.  Yesterday we went cruising on the Detroit River in our boat.  What a great way to spend a few hours on a very hot and steamy sunny afternoon.  We were cool cats though... Brady especially.

Last Fall when I visited them, Brady "commissioned" this quilt:
Jack in the Box quilt
He studied several pages in my quilt magazine, American Patchwork & Quilting, spotted this, and asked me to make it for him.   So I collected a few Halloween prints over the winter in Florida at Alma Sue's Quilts.  They are the jack-o'lantern print, the purple owls (love this one) that you see below, and a white with black bats that I haven't used yet.

Tentative layout, evening of September 7
I added in some Halloween-coloured fabrics from my stash and found a few scraps of very old Halloween fabric to use for some alternate centre squares.  The red "Skulls on Fire" fabric is an Alexander Henry I also got this winter, a quilt for MacGyver in mind.  It's a tad scary for a 7-year-old, so I just put one in.  It's been on the back burner, with the wheelchair charity quilts pushing it even more aside since I have to do a demo at September's guild meeting.

Think I may have mentioned that I work well under pressure...

Here it is from last night; a few tweaks occurred:

I'm making it bigger, as it is only a 32" wallhanging with the 9 blocks.  I plan to add two or three borders so he should have a lap quilt about 40X48.  They are here for another week, but we are busy doing stuff every day.
Wish me luck!

Linking up with:


  1. Good luck! Not that you need it!Oh My Darling great nephew, he is such a little stylish dude! And I know he will thoroughly enjoy his quilt! Remember last year ehen you told me he wanted this quilt, I suggested a glow in the dark piece of material somehow if there is such a thing? That would be cool for Halloween! I'm glad Joe sent me that recipe website as well. The salad you made looks enticing!

  2. If any one can do it girl, you can. Hugs

  3. Tis the season to start playing with fun Halloween fabrics. He will love it! Enjoy the rest of your visit.

  4. I love that he looks through your quilting magazines and commissioned this quilt. Super fun!

  5. Oh that Halloween quilt looks darling! I love the mix of fabrics!

  6. Brady is looking super cool!! :) I just know you have that quilt all pieced and quilted up by now! ;) Love that you put the skull fabric in there!!

  7. Great photo of Brady - he's quite a young man and looks so happy!
    Love the Jack in Box quilt and even more that he picked it out for you to make for him!
    You just know I have to share your salad recipe with Beana!

    1. Actually... I just sent your recipe and links to all our kids. They are really into Ted Talks too.

  8. my husband will love that salad. Did you know though raw kale gives what is politely referred to as bottom wind. Is this the downside to living a long life? I'm going to check out the website later, its always good to eat healthy. I hope you are enjoying precious time with your grandson, he looks to be great fun.


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