Special lunch and garden highlights

My grandparents treated me to lunch today and we went to one of my favorite spots in Sarasota, Station 400. I love this place because the ingredients are super fresh and the menu is exquisitely creative. There are several vegetarian and vegan options to choose from, so that makes me love it even more. I ordered the white bean hummus veggie wrap with a cup of cold cucumber and melon soup. Yes, COLD soup. SO YUMM. It was cool and refreshing, with a little bit of a spicy and salty kick. There may have been a tad too much salt but overall I was really impressed. And I don’t usually really care for cold soups… but this one hit the mark and I loved every drop. 
The hummus wrap was to die for. It was stuffed with escarole, tomatoes, shredded carrots, and a pickled beet and fennel relish (OMG so delish!) The chef always comes up with these crazy concoctions and blows me away every time I visit. Plus, not to be a brat, but I am a food snob, and I have been for awhile now. When food impresses me it really impresses me and I always get excited about it! Of course I had to enjoy it with a delicious Oregon IPA. ;)
Sometime last month I had a lovely spaghetti squash sitting on my kitchen counter that was dying to be cooked up :) It was looking at me with it’s sad lil squash eyes and saying please do something with me, you bought me 2 weeks ago and all I do is sit here and mope. I’d really like to be yummified sometime soon… 
So, I yummified my squash, and enjoyed every little bite. 
But in the process of scooping out the seeds I noticed that several of the seeds had begun to sprout! The squash had probably been picked some time ago, and I didn’t help things any by leaving it on the counter for a few weeks, so the seeds were doing what seeds do best… sprouting :) I didn’t think much of it at the time but I saved the lil sprouts and kept them in a wet paper towel for the rest of the week to see if I could keep them healthy. They did very well so I planted them a week later. And low-and-behold I’ve got myself a cute lil baby spaghetti squash plant now. 
So I’ve been caught off guard by this guy. I had little faith in four measly seeds, but these seeds have proved me wrong. I’ve never tried to grow winter squash before, but I guess these is a first time for everything. I’ve dabbled in lots of veggies like tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, etc. but those are all easy and hardy. Will my wee little plant survive and prosper? Not too sure yet since it’s only 4 seedlings worth of bounty! ha! I think I’m going to transplant him sometime soon, I’m sure the roots are dying to stretch out, but the future life of my spaghetti squash plant is still TBA. Stay tuned for updates ;) The peppers, tomatoes and fresh herbs are looking lovely. Tomatoes just started to brighten this week. Pics to follow when I snap a few!
Mother Nature never ceases to amaze me. The birth of life is beautiful in every way, shape or form. Whether it is a duckling by a pond, a child in a mother’s arms, or a wee lill baby squash seed just dying to stretch it’s leaves towards the heavens. Birth is the miracle that makes this world go ’round. I’d rather celebrate life than death any day of the week. I understand the behaviors surrounding the death of man that hurt so many lives, but personally I cannot feel satisfied in the celebration of death, no matter the reasoning. The war against terror isn’t over for the United States, or the world for that matter, and one more life lost is not going to change things. I’ll stand up and cheer when we finally have peace, but for now I will continue to mourn the lives that have been lost and the sacrifices that have been made. God bless this world.
That’s all for tonight ~Peace, love & veggies xo

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