The chefs create lavish plates.

The children and I had a good time scavenging in my garden for any remaining edibles. My New Zealand Spinach, known down under as warrigal, I think, popped up and was immediately lush after recent rains, so I picked a gallon of leaves to make Creamy Green Soup with.

The boys used a few of the leaves as a foundation for multiple gorgeous culinary creations, several of which were proudly presented as “fully edible.” I did eat one whole plateful, and we all nibbled on pineapple guavas that we found on the ground at the back of the bush, and almost-ripe pomegranate seeds. We found a few sweet tomatillos here and there, but there were only two fruits on the strawberry tree. Olives and salvia flowers and pomegranate flowers all contributed to extravagant visual displays.

Skeleton of a tomatillo husk. It contained seeds and a fly.

Meanwhile, Soldier cleaned my rain gutters
and Joy raked the paths of pine and redwood needles.

Liquidambar gumballs

On our drizzly walks we’ve admired liquidambar trees with deep red leaves yet to drop, and collected cotoneaster berries for the next phase of Christmas decorating. My grandson Pat and his new bride are joining us for Christmas Eve!

Here are the remaining “Baby Jesuses” that we made from salt dough about thirty years ago, re-wrapped in their twill tape swaddling clothes and set under my second little Christmas tree, given by my neighbor and decorated by the children just tonight.

“Away in a walnut shell…”

7 thoughts on “The chefs create lavish plates.

  1. I can’t tell you how much joy these photos gave me, seeing your Littles with the garden edibles, working carefully at them, being together, being in nature. And your baby Jesus walnuts are precious. I send all good wishes for a beautiful Christmas your way. I’m so behind on visiting and reading. I’m not sure if your church does Dec. 25 or later (as it does Easter) but either way, much joy to you and your family. Stay well, safe and full of the love you share.


  2. What a splendid time you must have had. Lovely photos. And I really liked the little walnut cradles – how sweet and tender.

    Wishing you a very Happy Christmas, Gretchen. I’m glad to have shared a bit of the journey with you here in Blogland. Brenda xo


  3. It is so beautiful when the garden still gives you food in December. My pineapple guavas are all gone by now and so are the pomegranates (I only had one in the first place since it is still a very young tree). Your baby Jesuses are precious. I wish you a peaceful and blessed Christmas.


    1. I had the biggest crop of guavas ever, but they all fell on the ground, which was surprising. And I think my bush is in a cold spot, with not as much sun exposure as it would like, so I don’t often get any kind of crop.

      My pomegranate bushes are a dwarf type, planted as ornamentals, but they make more and bigger fruits every year. As with the guavas, it seems too cold here to ever expect a truly ripe one. The children said they like the sour taste 😉


  4. Happy times with family. The baby Jesuses are so cute lying in their walnut cradles.
    May this blessed season be very special as you celebrate with your loved ones.


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