It's time for my annual plea on behalf of homeless animals. If you're considering adding a pet during the holidays, please, please think about a shelter or rescue pet. There are so many wonderful dogs and cats looking for good homes. Our own Lucy came from the Humane League. She's a sweet dog and a wonderful friend. I swear on some level she understands she was in a bad spot and we came and rescued her. She certainly wants to please and she enjoys being a farm dog. Poeple spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on purebred dogs. The pedigree is pretty meaningless unless you're breeding or showing the dog. You can get a mixed breed with the characteristics you're looking for. Lucy is mixed, but with the appearance, friendliness and obedience of a Lab. Mixed breeds make wonderful pets!
As many of you know, I'm a nut for fragrances (one reason I love herbs and old-fashioned, fragrant ornamental plants.) I was thinking again about fragrances as I prepared for open house and made the mulled cider we always serve. The fruit and spice combination made the whole house smell yummy - very homey and holiday-ish. On a cold, raw day, a hot drink warms you from the inside out - you get to appreciate not just the taste, but the aroma and the warming quality. This recipe makes it particularly good. It adds not just flavor, but more body to the cider. Try it during the cold months and see if you don't agree.
Happy Herbal Holidays to all !!
HOT MULLED CIDER
1 gallon cider
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 lemon and 1 orange, washed & sliced
2 sticks cinnamon
1 Tbsp. whole cloves
1/2 Tbsp. whole allspice
Combine cider, sugar and fruit in large pan. Tie spices in cheesecloth and add to cider. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes.