Friday, September 23, 2011

Watermelon Smoothie

I developed this smoothie while I was living in Phoenix half a decade ago.  I developed it because some days when I would get home from work, I didn't want to eat or cook.  I wanted to swim in the pool and hide in the shade.  This was my remedy.  I would whip this up, make a big batch of popcorn and relax.

Now that I live in the Pacific Northwest, my opportunities to make and have this delight are few.  But we have been blessed with some warm weather this week so I am keeping this baby alive!

First I start with a seedless watermelon.  Does anyone still eat the ones with seeds?

I take off the rind and chop it up into roughly 1 inch cubes.

I put it on a cookie sheet and then pop it in my freezer for a couple of hours.  Once it is fully frozen you can put the cubes in a ziplock and keep it in the freezer for when the mood strikes you.

If you don't want to wait for your watermelon to freeze, you can use it unfrozen and add ice.  But really, it is worth the extra work up front.  Just look how gorgeous it is when it is frozen?!

I gather up all my stuff, fresh ginger, fresh mint, lemon or limeade, and honey.  I do sometimes add a fresh lemon or lime zest when I have it.  I didn't today.

I use about a cup of watermelon cubes per person and a peeled fresh ginger piece about as thick as my thumb nail for every two people.  It's really a guessing game,  it will come out delicious however you do it!

I add about 10-12 fresh mint leaves per two people.  Again...a guessing game.

Then in goes about 2 Tbls. honey.

I then add in enough lemon or limeade to cover the watermelon cubes, or there abouts.  If your blender is having a hard time just add more liquid.

Give 'er a whirl and instant refreshment is yours!

Needless to say, this would be fabulous with a couple of jiggers to vodka, tequila or light rum for those of you sans le kiddos.

I never do that because I give this to my kids all the time, especially on hot days when they have a game or practice.  And I always get a thank you.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

School Starts Again-A Black and White Issue

Summer is over, the school year is underway and all is as it should be.

It feels good to be back in rhythm, with a schedule.

This year I am working with the middle school children at The Village School here in Eugene.

Teenagers are a moody intense bunch.  For the most part it passes, which is a good thing.

But whilst they are in this intense phase of their lives, I think teens should embrace and explore the darker sides of their psyches.  Because I think we can only truly find our way to light when we acknowledge the darker aspects of ourselves and the world.

Teenagers gravitate towards this behavior naturally.  They test boundaries, they break rules, they dye their hair, rip holes in perfectly good clothing, they pierce things, they party...all in an attempt to explore the darker, edgy side of life.

For my first class this year, I thought that I might help some young students explore the dark and the light in a safe guided charcoal, on paper.

Twelve drawings, twelve different view points. 

When you give teenagers all the tools, some guidance and lots of praise...some really good things happen.

Student's on left, teacher's on the right.

We often see the world in black and white, especially teenagers. But there are many shades between those two polarities.  Many shades, many textures...and they are all beautiful.