Archives for December 2010

New Friends and a Mustard Plant

This has been a great week for making new friends. On Sunday, I met a wonderful group from Providence United Methodist Church, who treated me to a delish Southern-style lunch: a buffet at the historic Green Manor Restaurant in Union City, GA.

The ladies had read and discussed my book, Mustard Seeds, and presented me with my very own potted mustard plant to take home! Thank you all again. Here’s a photo–not of my plant, but of one that’s very similar:

And yes, to answer a question that comes up a lot, you really can grow mustard here in the South (and across the U.S.), and it can be both ornamental and edible. My new plant is an annual, but I’ll enjoy it indoors, by a sunny window.

Mustard plants also come in red-purple varieties, which are great colors for a fall garden, and especially beautiful as the weather starts to turn. You can find seeds for sale at local nurseries and garden centers, or buy potted plants like mine.

I’m surprised how often people tell me that they’ve never eaten mustard, especially here in the South, where we eat a lot of garden greens. Then again, maybe mustard is an acquired taste, because it can be pungent. If you’re willing to try it, toss the raw mustard leaves in your fresh salads. It’s also good, if a big stronger-tasting, when cooked and seasoned as you’d do with any other kind of edible greens, like spinach or turnips.

Thank you again, new friends from Providence, for the gift of the plant, the lunch, and the wonderful conversation.

Thanks, too, to the Georgian Garden Club of Villa Rica. I visited last night and read a devotional from Mustard Seeds (which is a collection of essays about faith, not gardening, in case anybody is confused by now). I couldn’t have had a warmer reception, and I enjoyed the delicious mango-passionfruit tea you served–can’t wait to try it again!

Meet Miss Paws

Lynn Coulter, Authors, New Pet

Meet Miss Paws

Merry day-after-Christmas! I got a very special gift this year: a new friend.

We had a Golden Retriever for many years, and I’ve missed her terribly since she passed away. Somehow I kept waiting for just the right time to get another pet–and then I saw an animal rescue organization called Angels Among Us on Facebook. If you’re in the Atlanta area, check them out. They do great work, saving unwanted pets from kill shelters and housing them in foster homes until the pets can find their “forever families.”

We were drawn to a photo of a sad-looking little black-and-white girl named Yoshi and read that she’d be available for viewing through Angels Among Us the next weekend. We drove to Alpharetta, GA to meet her and fell in love. Now we’ve re-named her Dixie, and because I’m a nickname fanatic, she has quickly also become known as Dixie Dog, Moondoggie, and Miss Dix.

But today I’ve decided to give her just one more nickname. She is already showing signs of being the perfect office assistant for a working writer (that is, she sleeps on my feet while I’m at the computer and keeps my toes warm).

So, gentle readers, I’m delighted to introduce you to my new assistant: Miss Paws!

Miss Paws is of mixed heritage, but we believe she is part Border Collie and part Corgi (the kind with tails). She’s 25 pounds of sweetness, approximately 10 months to a year old, and full of energy. She’s still doing some puppy-biting, but one of our Christmas gifts is a doggie training course that starts in January, so we hope to address that bitey-business soon.

Watch this blog for updates from her when I’m otherwise engaged or simply slipping off for a nap or other such important activity. She has promised to write a post from time to time, and if anyone out there would like to know more about the writing process, be sure to drop her a line here (that is, write a comment). Miss Paws will endeavor to answer your questions about writing, getting published, etc.

Trust me on this. Miss Paws will answer; she’s a pretty fast typist.