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Seasonal Changes

We all know with each season comes changes, not just weather and what surrounds us, but within ourselves. Different moods come with each season, change in attitude, change in clothing, change in food, change in activities. We can lead into each season with certain expectations on what we are going to do and how we are going to live, but seasons don't always go as expected. I know there are certain parts of our country that might have a white Eater, cold and snow on the ground. Some might experience wind and rain, thunderstorms even, not what was expected. Trips may get cancelled, vacations may be put on hold, so many unexpected events, such is life!!! I have heard it said and try to live by this, "Expectations can lead to disappointments".


Going with the flow of the season, the changes, what it holds, what it offers and what it gives. Enjoying the unexpected, or at least flowing with it. Many times there is growth in the unexpected, lessons to learn and challenges to get through and we always seem to get through them! As we approach this spring season there is a restlessness within us, the desire to be outside more, to set up our outdoor spaces now that the weather is getting warmer. Blue skies and sunshine can always make for a better disposition and the desire for prettier outdoor living spaces. Seasonal foods change, gardens are starting to be planted, again more time outdoors. Plant a garden even if it is small, watch the fruits of your labor come alive. If there is not enough space you can use pots placed on a patio or balcony, little planter areas can be transformed into wonderful places to plant some herbs, vegetables and fruits.


Spring changes can also mean allergies, causing discomfort with allergy symptoms and colds. Try some home remedies that may help with the symptoms, teas, essential oils (particularly peppermint, eucalyptus and frankincense), air filters in the home, foods high in bromelain (helps with breathing) such as papaya and pineapple, acupuncture, local sourced honey (can lower your allergic reaction over time to the pollen that bees collect in your area), stinging nettle (a natural antihistamine). These are just suggestions, but if your symptoms get too severe consult your doctor.

According to Chinese medicine, spring can bring an upsurge with your liver energy, by paying attention to your liver meridian with acupuncture, this can help with allergies. One of the most effective times to do a detoxification is also in the spring because it is the time that the body naturally enhances its detoxification systems due to the surge of liver and gallbladder energy. They say, regular detoxification helps keep the liver and gallbladder channels healthy as well as adequate sleep is also a very important aspect.


Here is a spring time list of fruits and vegetables, some are year round so you may see them listed each season, your body will benefit from staying with what is on the list. These fruits and vegetables will be the most nourishing, fresher in texture, color and taste, with more nutrients your body can use.

Apples, Apricots, Avocados, Bananas, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Celery, Collard Greens, Garlic, Herbs, Kale, Kiwifruit, Lemons, Lettuce, Limes, Mushrooms, Onions, Peas, Pineapple, Radish, Rhubarb, Spinach, Strawberries, Swiss chard, Turnips.

I am sharing a recipe for a yummy apricot crisp because apricots are in abundance this time of year, and delicious by themselves. I also made some apricot fried pies to take to my sister for her birthday this last weekend, I would have shared those but wasn't sure I wanted to share a FRIED pie, but they are delicious. They are her favorites and instead of cake they are what she asked for for her birthday every year growing up and into adulthood. My Mom always made them, so now that she is no longer with us, I have taken over the apricot fried pie making. Not the healthiest but delicious and a favorite. If you are an apricot fan, and would like it, I can send you the fried pie recipe.


Apricot Crisp

Ingredients: FOR THE FILLING:

6 cups fresh apricots, pitted and sliced (no need to peel)

zest of one small lemon, about ½ teaspoon

1 tbsp cornstarch

1/2 tsp ground ginger

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 cup honey, or pure maple syrup

FOR THE TOPPING: 1 cup old-fashioned oats

3/4 cup coconut flour

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp salt

6 tbsp cold unsalted butter, cubed or ghee

3 tbsp pure maple syrup


Directions:

MAKE THE FILLING:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat an 8x8-inch baking dish with coconut oil.

In a large bowl, toss together the apricots, lemon zest, cornstarch, ginger, and cinnamon. Stir gently until apricots are evenly coated with the spices, and then gently stir in the honey or maple syrup. Pour into the prepared baking dish.


MAKE THE TOPPING:

In a medium bowl, stir together the oats, coconut flour , cinnamon, and salt. Add the butter cubes and use your fingers to work the butter into the oat mixture until it begins to clump together and the butter pieces are small. Stir in the maple syrup. Sprinkle topping over apricots.

Bake in the preheated oven until filling is bubbly and topping is golden brown, 30-32 minutes. Let cool slightly before serving.



Apricot Crisp



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