Elderberries for a Healthy Fall

The elderberry bushes in my yard have been harvested. I have canned elderberry juice for the winter, and I have berries in the freezer. Elderberry bushes have a long history of use. The flower heads in early summer are beautiful. The flowers can be used to make a cordial that has nutritional value. Click here… Continue reading Elderberries for a Healthy Fall

Family Time by Lake Superior

Last week we were in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan with our married children and the grandchildren. It was a delight to watch the grandkids enjoy being out in nature, spending precious time with their cousins.  I watched the older cousins flock around the youngest. We enjoyed picnics along the coast of Lake Superior. The… Continue reading Family Time by Lake Superior

Fruit of the Garden

After I retired from clinical nursing, my work has changed. My work revolves around home and church. Gardening is a pleasant task at home. I enjoy planting and nourishing the garden. It is fulfilling to pick the produce and share it with family and friends. It is interesting that the word, work, appears in the… Continue reading Fruit of the Garden

Beautiful U.P. and Wild Thimbleberries

The Upper Peninsula of Michigan is a place of refreshment for me. I have lots of family memories. When I was a child, my family made a trip to the U.P. every summer, to visit my grandparents, aunt, uncle, and cousins.  During a couple of these vacation trips, my Dad took my brother and I… Continue reading Beautiful U.P. and Wild Thimbleberries

Berry Picking in Northern Michigan

The forests and fields in northern Michigan demonstrate the abundant creativity in nature, designed by God. There are trees—pine and deciduous—ferns, wildflowers and berries. My sister and I spent a week in the Upper Peninsula. We hiked. We picked apples and berries. Thimbleberries are abundant in the Keweenaw (the peak of the Upper Peninsula that… Continue reading Berry Picking in Northern Michigan

Canning Berries: Memories of Mom

As I canned cherries and gooseberries this summer, I thought of my mother. She had stimulated my interest in canning. We had made and canned thimbleberry jam together. It was a family project to pick and clean the wild berries. Gooseberries have stems and “pig tales” (the remainder of the flower). They also have a… Continue reading Canning Berries: Memories of Mom

Spring flowers and the Elderberry Bush

The warm weather and spring flowers are so welcome. I am enjoying daffodils, tulips, violets and cherry blossoms as I begin gardening. The elderberry bushes in my backyard have produced well, providing berries for elderberry juice. I can the juice, and throughout the past months I have enjoyed adding a couple tablespoons of elderberry juice… Continue reading Spring flowers and the Elderberry Bush

Rhythm of Life

The mint in my backyard has flowered; tiny white flowers make a wreath around the stem. I pause to wonder at the delicate loveliness. The phlox are a bright spot of color. I can see them from my kitchen window. The elderberries are getting ripe. I will make elderberry juice/syrup from them.  The flowers are… Continue reading Rhythm of Life

Traditions and Heritage

My mother picked strawberries and wild blueberries with her mother, and so did I. My Finnish heritage has given me a an appreciation for berries, wild and cultivated.  Berries are abundant in Finland (37 types of edible wild berries) and an important addition to the diet. Enjoyment of berries is a family tradition. According to… Continue reading Traditions and Heritage