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Showing posts with the label REVIEWS (TRAVEL)

Summer Foraging Recipe: Elderberry-Blueberry Jam with Chia Seeds

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In the woodland valleys of Central California, Elderflower trees have been in bloom all spring with their prolific, lacy white blossoms.  I've enjoyed making Elderflower syrup, candied elderflowers and sweet Elderflower Tempura.  A few days ago, I noticed that some of the trees are starting to bear fruit -- diminutive, tart little berries, deep purplish-blue growing in heavy clusters.  

Inspired by a love of biscuits and jam, foraging, and adapted from a recipe from Simply Beyond Herbs, I whipped up a simple and delicious jam made from the foraged Elderberries, fresh blueberries and using chia seeds for a perfect jammy consistency.

Enjoy and Happy Foraging!
PrintWith ImageWithout Image Elderberry-Blueberry Chia JamYield: One half-pint jarAuthor: Jenn Erickson Prep time: 10 MCook time: 10 MTotal time: 20 M An easy and delicious sweet-tart jam to make from foraged Elderberries. Ingredients:1 1/2 cups elderberries, rinsedPinch of salt1 cup blueberries, rinsed2 Tablespoons Chia Seeds1/2 Tabl…

Family Fun in the Bay Area -- CuriOdyssey at Coyote Point

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Looking for something fun to do with your family in the San Francisco Bay Area this summer?  How do you like the idea of a place with hands-on, totally interactive exhibits --  a place where science and wonder meets fun and play?  Add to this getting up-close-and-personal with California wildlife -- from playful river otters and bobcats to eagles and kestrels and a window into an active beehive!  

This past weekend, my family had the opportunity to attend the opening of the Backyard Science Exhibit at the CuriOddysey Museum at Coyote Point in San Mateo (about 20 minutes outside of San Francisco).   We met up with Holly of 504 Main and her crew, and the kids had a blast experimenting with gears, light, currents, cascades, and sounds.  Our kids range in age from 4 to 10; While the older ones really got in to the lessons and scientific principles behind each exhibit, the little ones were able to enjoy each experience at their own levels, with wonder and curiosity.

The CuriOdyssey Museum is…

BI-RITE DYNO-MITE!

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A few weekends ago we ventured up to the city to scope out the art scene, partake in some glorious dim-sum and experience Sam's Sundae at Bi-Rite Creamery. This legendary ice cream creation has been described as "perfection", "heavenly" and with the explicit sensual characterization typically reserved for lusty romance novels. The Bi-Rite Creamery menu describes Sam's Sundae thusly: "Chocolate ice cream with bergamot olive oil, maldon sea salt and whipped cream." Unusual; even a bit bizarre! Olive oil on ice cream? I'm an adventurous eater, but must admit, I was a bit wary of how it would play out on the palette
We arrived on 18th Street at around 4:30 p.m. The streets were flooded with the uber-hip college crowd; sun was shining and a guy with a massive boombox affixed to his bicycle wound his way around the crowds blaring Journey's "Don't Stop Believing." We found a place in the line that extended all the way down the block.…

RENEGADE CRAFT FAIR FAVORITES

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A few weeks ago, Rook No. 17 and friends visited the Renegade CraftFair in San Francisco. "What is Renegade," you may ask? The Renegade Craft Fair is a unique event featuring many of the most talented artisans and craftspeople in the country. To quote one fan of RCF, "this aint your Gramma's craft fair!" The event is held annually in Brooklyn, Chicago, Los Angeles & San Francisco. Each individual fair draws hundreds of applicants and tens of thousands of shoppers from all over the country and abroad! What sort of things can one find at RCF? You'll find thousands of handmade items from apparel to jewelry, posters to prints, craft kits, letterpress and other unique stationery, handcrafted plush, home decor, and much more. For the creatively inclined, the RCF is a great source of inspiration. Rook No. 17 was happy to see a lot of creative upcycling and recylcing going on. Here are some of our favorite vendors that we had the pleasure to meet at this July&#…

OUR FAVORITE TRAVEL RESOURCE: OFFBEAT GUIDES

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Planning a vacation this summer? Fed up with your current scene & packing your bags for an impromptu weekend escape? Tired of the same old travel guides with outdated information? Before you fly, drive, or pedal away on your next adventure, you need to visit Offbeat Guides. In just five simple steps you can build your own personalized travel guide tailored to your visit. What makes Offbeat Guides different? "Offbeat Guides are the first travel guides that you create online using the most current travel information available on the Internet for over 30,000 travel destinations. These personalized travel guides give you all of the information that traditional travel guides include, plus more. For the first time, you can personalize your guide based on your travel dates, destination, and personal travel interests." Cool, right? And the best part is that it's FREE.

OLLALLIE, BY GOLLY!

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IT'S OLLALIE PICKING TIME AT GIZDICH RANCH ! TAKE A STEP BACK FROM THE RUSHED PACE OF LIFE, PACK UP THE FAMILY AND HEAD TO WATSONVILLE FOR A FUN DAY OF BERRY PICKING.

WHAT TO BRING SUNSCREEN AND/OR A HAT WEAR COMFORTABLE CLOTHES THAT YOU DON'T MIND GETTING BERRRY-STAINED YOU CAN BRING BASKETS OR BUCKETS FOR PICKING, OR CAN USE THE ONES THEY HAVE THERE. A CAMERA OPTIONAL: A LARGE COOLER LINED WITH ZIPLOC FREEZER BAGS OF ICE. BUY ONE OF THE BERRY FLATS AT THE BOOTH FOR ONLY ABOUT $1 AND TUCK IT RIGHT IN TO YOUR ICE-LINED COOLER TO KEEP THOSE BERRIES FROM COOKING IN YOUR HOT CAR. MORE FUN AFTER BERRY-PICKING...
DON'T MISS THE PIE SHOP BACK AT THE MAIN RANCH. HERE YOU'LL FIND BATHROOMS, A NICE GIFT SHOP, AND A BIG RED BARN WHERE YOU CAN PURCHASE A PIECE OF ONE OF THEIR PHENOMENAL PIES AND SANDWICHES TOO, TO ENJOY OUT IN THE PICNIC ORCHARD. WHILE THERE THE KIDS CAN PLAY ON THE HAYSTACK STRUCTURE AND OLD TRACTOR ~ GREAT PHOTO OPS!IN THE GIFT SHOP YOU CAN PICK UP LOCAL MAPS, FREE RE…