Ewesletter July 03

Berries: the Succulent Jewells of Spaland

Is there anything sweeter than fresh berries in the summertime? When I think about berries, a few memories come to mind — like the summer of 1992. I was living in Ottawa and my mother and I went to a farm and picked bushels and bushels of the most perfect strawberries and then my father and I made a couple of cases of very fragrant strawberry wine. And when I think of blueberries, I remember picking them straight from the woods behind our house in Dartmouth when we lived there in the late 1970s. Although this may sound a little odd, I enjoyed them best with a dollop of sour cream mixed with sugar. Now living in Victoria, we have blackberries growing wild in our neighbourhood and you know when they're ripe because suddenly all of the white cars in town start developing distinctive purple splotches — thanks to our bird friends. So in honour of berries of all kinds, here are some spa-style secrets for you to add to your repertoire. raspberry  
raspberry vinegar on table
  1. Go on a berry-picking expedition. Don't forget to grab your camera and to apply sunscreen.
  2. Make jam. After a good night's sleep, start off the day with a healthy breakfast, including a spoonful of homemade jam. And in case you find yourself in a bit of a gift-giving pickle, little jars make great hostess gifts.
  3. Use any combination of raspberries, strawberries and even blueberries in a cleansing facial. Berries have high concentrations of antioxidants which eat up nasty free radicals. You'll look good, smell good and feel good after applying a berry mask to your face.
  4. Infuse berries into vinegar. If you have raspberry vinegar on hand, you can use it for salad dressings or you can mix some into your beauty preparations anytime the recipe calls for vinegar — like in facial toner sprays or bathwater. And bottles make yet another charming gift idea.
5. Make smoothie-popsicles.
1 pint blueberries
1 pint strawberries, hulled
(or 2 pints of berries of your choice)
1/2 cup brown sugar
pinch of salt
2 3/4 cups vanilla or chocolate soy milk
  1. Purée blueberries and strawberries (in batches) in a blender or food processor, or mash by hand.
  2. Add brown sugar, soy milk and salt until well blended. Pour mixture into popsicle moulds but if you don't have any, pour into small paper cups, filling about two-thirds full. Place in freezer until the mixture starts to harden (check at 30 minutes) then insert sticks. Freeze until firm, about 2 to 3 hours. Makes 12 servings.

Visit our Homespunspa booth at the Moss Street Market — Look for the yellow and white cheery umbrella — Saturdays till early October, 10am-2pm (somewhere on the school parking lot) in Victoria.

And a special bonus! July's Ewesletter has a page 2 — a Homespunspa and EAT magazine exclusive. Check out A Spa — Right from your fridge, an article and cheeky pic about Homespunspa and yours truly.


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