Spring Renewal at Robinson Gardens
"It is easy to love the people far away. It is not always easy to love those close to us..."
Mother Teresa knew what she was talking about! Since March 15, most of us have been quarantined by the coronavirus, some alone and others with partners and children. This has given us a chance to practice togetherness in real time and to take a deeper look at ourselves, as well as our loved ones. We have seen the good, the bad and the ugly. Most of us have set up routines and adjusted our living habits since we are together 24/7. After so many weeks of togetherness, my husband of 52 years and I have found a rhythm that has settled in for us. We work at opposite ends of the house. We divide the chores. I load the dishwasher. He puts away the clean dishes. We change the bed together. We both cook and do the cleanup. I dust and clean. He vacuums. I do the laundry. He changes clothes at least three times a day.
We walk together in our garden and enjoy the bounty that spring has brought us...avocados, lemons, limes, oranges, kumquats and quince. With all the refreshing winter rains, the garden is showing its appreciation. Roses are blooming and hydrangeas are beginning to reveal their colors. Our many sycamores and California live oaks are reaching for the sky. How I love the tall trees! They remind me of the woods of my childhood outside of Boston, but are called by different names. Just this morning, as we looked out of our bedroom window, we noticed a lot of commotion going on in a large planter near the little pool house. Inside there was a nest holding four baby birds...a miracle of this season. Life! The mother darted in and out bringing sustenance to her chicks. I am filled with gratitude for the blessings of spring. We are so fortunate to live in this wonderful place.
For me, it is the attitude we adopt during a crisis that can either help us or harm us. A sense of humor and optimism can take us a long way in finding happiness. Forgiveness works very well. So does patience. Helping others and giving back improves the lives of others as well as bringing meaning to our lives. Plant seeds of hope, and watch what grows.
We have all been missing this year's Garden Tour. We were fortunate to be introduced to David Silverman, from lahousehistories.com, who has written books on two houses that had formerly been seen on Garden Tour. Thank you to former President and advisor, Maralee Beck, Superintendent Tim Lindsay, and again to Mitch Rossiter who all worked incredibly hard with David to bring you our Webinar with an inside look at these wonderful homes with stories and connections to the Robinsons. We hope that you all enjoyed our first Webinar or seminar on the Web. Click here to view the webinar.
This week, I am sending photos from my own garden to share with you.
I ask that you share photos of what is growing in your garden too. Just send them to our office at [email protected]
With hope and gratitude,
Below you will find Betty Goldstein's recipe for a delicious Lemon Rose Geranium Angel Cake. Enjoy!
Lemon Rose Geranium Angel Cake
1 ½ cups sugar
1 cup flour
12 egg whites
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt
6 lemon rose geranium leaves
Additional lemon rose geranium leaves and blossoms, for garish
Berries for garnish
Preheat the oven to 350 F
Sift ¾ cup of the sugar and the flour together; set aside. In a large mixing bowl, combine the egg whites with the cream of tartar, vanilla, and salt. Beat until soft peaks begin to form. Slowly add the remaining ¾ cup sugar, continuing to beat until stiff peaks begin to form. Do not over beat; mixture should be stiff but not dry. Gently fold in the flour mixture, a small bit at a time.
Line the bottom of an un-greased 10-inch tube pan with the leaves. Pour the batter into the pan and bake until the caked is golden and springs back when gently touched, about 50 minutes. Invert the cake pan over the neck of a bottle and let the cake cool in the pan for 1 to 1 ½ hours. Gently run a sharp knife around the sides of the pan to release the cake. Garnish with geranium leaves and flowers and fresh berries, if desired.
Makes 1 10 - inch cake
If you have time to plan ahead, the geranium flavor of this cake can be intensified by placing the sugar in a container with a tight-fitting lid and burying two or three geranium leaves in it for a week or so. This flavored sugar is also wonderful treat with fruit, in other cakes, or served with tea.
This recipe is from the Cooking with Herbs by Emelie Tolley and Chris Mead