Hello friends and welcome do Day 4 of CAMP JOY!
Everyday at camp is sweet but today feels especially great! We’re getting out into the garden!
I’ve always thought of myself as a person who has not a green thumb, but in fact a black thumb – a thumb of death when it comes plants. This is a story I’ve told myself for most of my adult life up until I bought The Bakehouse 4 years ago. I had a backyard and thought – well, let’s see!
Turns out I can grow plants. Not all plants but some tropical greens (who really just want to grow wild down here), little florals, happy succulents, an eager fig tree, a magnolia tree I worship, gardenias, and a senna tree for the butterflies. It humble and earnest and the story about my black thumb has a green happy ending.
Today at camp we’re getting in the garden to plant a few kitty greens for King Tron. And we’ll gather a few leaves for some clay pressings, too!
Tron is mostly an indoor cat these days but I’d like to bring a little outside indoors for him. I found a catnip plant at a local pet store and surrounded the catnip with oat grass seeds that sprouted up like this.
We’ve planted greens and now we’re pressing our greens!
Ok here’s the thing – I’m secretly SUPER nostalgic. I collect rocks from hikes and shells from the beach. I take too many pictures and hang them around my house. I preserve a little bit of each season someway somehow.
This year I’ve pressed each season of my little garden in this flower press. I use scraps of paper and tape to label each clipping before it’s dried.
My friend Suzonne is the most creative person I know. Early in our friendship she told me about leaves she pressed in air dry clay the year her son was born – away to mark a blur of a year for herself. I’ve held that idea for the nearly five years we’ve known each other and have finally made space this summer to press and preserve.
Here’s how Suzonne pressed leaves in clay.
Here’s what I used:
• DAS Air-Hardening Modeling Clay
• Mod Podge, watercolors, and brushes.
I let the clay leaves air dry overnight in foil rings then used watercolor and Mod Podge to paint the bowls. Swirl some water around your watercolors and dip the paint brush in Mod Podge (it’ll act as a sealer). Paint around the leaves however looks and feels good to you! Just experiment – that’s what I did.
Are there other ways to paint these bowls? Sure! Play around! That’s what camp is all about!
Planting our greens. Pressing our greens. Now we’re eating our greens!
I’ll tell you what – this pandemic body is begging for a salad these days. Absolutely begging.
Here’s how I make a big salad that I actually want to eat.
I start with a pre-packaged bag salad (the kind with little add-ins and dressing). I sure do! It’s sometimes hard to make a salad and hard to eat a salad.
• hemp seeds
• protein like canned tuna and/or hardboiled eggs
• extra pumpkin or sunflower seeds
• something sweet and something sour like dried cranberries or cherries and sauerkraut, capers, or olives.
• something crunchy like celery, croutons, or nuts.
• dressing: pre-packed or a simple vinaigrette
• goat cheese if you’re feeling fancy
• salt and pepper
Let’s eat these greens!
Thanks for joining in another fun day at CAMP JOY!
Have the most wonderful week!
I have the blackest of the thumbs Thanks
Tron looks like he is doing okay…that is great news.
He is such a handsome guy and clearly knows it!
Positive thoughts are being sent his way
I so much love your blog Joy. Thank you for keeping this spot on the internet and for being such an inspiration. I love your posts and what you share.
Keep having fun your cmap “trip”.
Thanks Joy! I’m really loving this series :) I don’t have an Instagram account, though, and have been accessing the episodes from links in your blog posts. Can you please put in a direct link here? Or if you did and I’m missing it, sorry about that!
I’m going to play lots of Thundercat and send tons of well wishes to Tron <3
I have the blackest of the thumbs, but I’ll move soon into a newer apartament this means I could turn it into green?
Love the leaf press idea! Salad? Ya, I need that too. With hemp seeds (toasted)
My trip to Yo Semite (What was that, Donny?) was sort of a bust. With suitcases packed and ready, I read my email before bed and the project I thought was never coming did come at 10:39 PM!! With crappy internet in the park, there was no way I could do it (and the $ was good!)
So my Eagle Scout hub packed up the big one and the little one and they went without me. That way I could work in peace. Let me tell you that was one great staycation, even while working! I had cake for dinner two nights in a row and talked on the phone to friends. It was great. They came back relaxed and I was too!
dixya @food, pleasure, and health
what a fun and refreshing activity. I definitely have black thumb but every season, i hope its different and it hasnt been the case so far.
I hope Tron is doing better. Love your garden. I like you don’t have that green thumb they speak of, but have a few herbs and a Christmas Cactus and am thrilled every time it blooms! The leaf project is a good thing to try. Be well Joy!
I’ve wanted to press flowers for a long time. Thanks for sharing the press you use. The leaf project is a keeper idea for when my granddaughters come over. What fun. I love nature! :-)