Wednesday, February 23, 2022

A Bit of This and That


The pot I purchased as mere green shoots has grown to foot-high stalks with streaky dark pink tulip heads now beginning to dry and thin like fine old paper. I have them in the entrance hall and pass them throughout the day, often reaching out to touch them gently.

As Brene Brown writes "I don't have to chase extraordinary moments to find happiness. It's right in front of me, if I'm paying attention and practicing gratitude."

Monday was a holiday for Family Day. We didn't see family, as some sickness is keeping us apart these days and we are all just being careful. 

A few apples from our trees, picked last fall and stored in the refrigerator, needed to be used up. I baked an apple cake using this recipe. I think I added an extra 1/2 cup of flour as I was doing something else while baking. Although a bit dry, it still tasted very good. There is a bit of glaze on the cake, but because of the dryness I made some caramel sauce to serve with it. Yum. 

With the few apples left over I cooked up some applesauce and froze it. 

One night I made falafel. Rather than round balls, I made flatter cakes and served them with tzatziki, radishes, pea shoots, tomatoes, and lettuce. Oh, and quick pickled onions. It's the first time I've made falafel and found it quite easy. 

Memories are stirred by all of our senses - sights, sounds, tastes, touches, and smells. These memories triggered by senses act as reference points in life. So much passes through my mind and is stored there, and most of it is never retrieved. How wonderful it is that a small bit of stimuli such as a crisp bite of hot falafel and the contrast of crisp vegetables instantly brings to mind the image of Tim and I sitting side by side in a crowded cafe in the Marais in Paris, watching a livestream of the wailing wall in Jerusalem on a television in the corner while we ate our lunch. 

The clippings of pittosporum (mock orange) that I brought into the house are now blooming, with a faint citrus scent. They are a welcome bit of greenery these days as winter has let us know that he's not done with us yet. Early on Monday morning, while it was still dark, I heard rain in the gutters, and fell back asleep. We got up a bit late and I was shocked to pull back the curtains and see snow on the ground! The wind howled around for a couple of days, and it's very chilly out there. Winter's last blast, perhaps? One can hope.

Are you waiting impatiently for spring or content with winter lingering a bit longer? 


  1. Absolutely beautiful tulips. So nice that you were able to make apple cake with your very own apples. I love apple cake. We too had snow but it came a little bit later than forecast. I don't think it will last long. Enjoy the rest of your week.

  2. Some days it feels as if spring has arrived, others not so much. However, the garden is showing plenty of signs that she is here and here to stay.
    I have made falafel a couple of times but never thought of making them flat - yours look delicious.
    We have a young girl of Turkish origin here, who has what she calls her 'falafel pod'. She parks in a nearby layby and serves her freshly made falafel to passers by.

  3. Your apple cake and falafel sound great! I am not waiting impatiently for spring because the winter weather in in Florida is beautiful! But when I lived in NC I know I would be trying to hurry spring along!

  4. Spring please but it’s way too early here.

    The senses can bring to mind some wonderful memories for sure.

  5. I agree! Those memories, triggered by small things, come as a surprise and they are such a gift!

    Your cake looks delicious and is so pretty. (My Kati used to make a similar one. We miss her baking.) I doubt that anyone minded the addition of the caramel sauce! Is that what they call "a happy accident"?

  6. Mock orange is a beautiful shrub. The apple cake with caramel sauce sounds perfect for winter's chill.
    Winter, I fear, will be blasting reminders into April. I've settled spring to mind so that outdoors, snow and all, is merely a spring transition phase. :)

  7. Hi Lorri~

    What a beautiful post! I could almost smell the mock orange and the tulip, how wonderful to have them blooming in your home. The falafel even brought back memories for me. I had a wonderful friend who was from Israel, and she used to make falafel from scratch, it was delicious, great memories for me. You apple cake looks so good, and nothing can be bad with a little caramel sauce, right?! Thanks for sharing the recipe, it would be lovely for Easter. Have a wonderful rest of your week!

  8. Delicious... Food and memories. 🌸

  9. snow storm coming. I'm tire of it. 🌸

  10. The apple cake looks delicious. The apples are so pretty arranged that way. I'm longing for a bit of green! but our trees are still bare and the ground is covered in snow. However, today the sun is shining, so there's that.

  11. Lovely tulips. Strangely we had a small, very, flurry of snow this morning, big white flakes dancing at the window. They got bored and left, so we then had to put up with rain.

  12. Those Tulips are so pretty. I have mixed feelings about spring. Yes, I do look forward to it, but I also would rather that it stayed cooler longer and then just warm up and stay that way.

  13. How nice for the meal you created took you back to Paris. The tulips are beautiful and a nice reminder that Spring is on the way. I'm hoping signs of Spring pop up soon. We still have snow on the ground here so we'll be patient. Looking forward to walking out to the garage without thinking of slipping on the ice. :) That cake sure is pretty. Glad you found a good way to redeem the dryness.

  14. We were also surprised this morning when we looked out and saw the world was white again. We were among the very first to go walk in the park. There were such interesting bird 'footprints' as well as other animals. We would have missed all that if we'd gone later.
    I keep meaning to make falafel. As a vegetarian I'm always looking for easy, simple but healthy ideas.
    I'm amazed that your apples stayed good until now. The cake looks good and I can imagine how tasty it must be with caramel sauce. Yum.

  15. Tulips are some of my favorite spring flowers, I like their shape and the wide variety of colors. Yours are beautiful. The first early ones - Mystic VanEijk - are already flowering in my garden. We have VERY chilly nights right now (for California), but it does warm up during the to the upper 50s. The garden in the morning looks very different from the one at noon. But I do think I will lose a few plants to the frost.
    I agree about smells and tastes etc that wake up memories. Falafel is one of those tastes - it will always remind me of Israel, and I never ate falafel as tasty as there.

  16. Your tulips lasted a good long time as did mine - I think we both gained much enjoyment from them Lorrie. Now I can just about smell the mock orange, so pretty.
    I'm not really anxious for spring this year, due I think to thoughts of having to 'get out there' and face all the waiting garden work requiring attention!!! Not that I'm lazy, just because it hurts!!!!
    The world is spinning out of control and all I can think of right now are the people in Ukraine having to face death and destruction, through no fault of their own. Another madman is walking the earth!

  17. We awoke to a snowstorm, again!


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