Easter Blessings (and a Super-Easy Lemon Tart)

Wow, can it be Easter in just a few short days? It seems we just celebrated Christmas! Maybe it's because I've been working overtime on some fall and winter art contract deadlines; spring really has caught me by surprise!
Our front walk is full of color right now!
I took a long lunch hour the other day to clean the strawberry bed and plant a few more little plants. All of my strawberries are Oregon "Hood" strawberries. Most strawberries in the stores are from California. They might be pretty, but they have that hollow, white center, rendering the berry virtually tasteless. The Oregon berries are bright red throughout and make the most delicious shortcake and jams.
Hood strawberries are the best for flavor, and they make the tastiest and prettiest bright red jam you've ever seen.
While planting the berries, I was happy to see so many robins have returned to build nests in their usual places. They seem to like our dense topiaries and even atop a planter not two feet from the front door. I guess they know we use the back door!

But, I digress. I wanted to wish all of you a happy Easter and share a recipe.
N. E. Mink
I'm planning the Easter brunch menu in my head. I like tradition, so it will be ham with all of the fixings. Usually I fix Baklava for Easter (very labor intensive,) but this year I'm fixing a refreshing lemon tart that is super easy. I'm happy to share it...here you are!
N. E. Mink
I hope that you are excited about this blessed time of year, too. Easter is a most important day to me. The sacrifice of God's son for such an undeserved person as I is incomprehensible.
Along with the sweet smell of first-time-of-the-year mowed lawn, gentle spring showers, and daffodils smiling back at me as I look out my window, is the joy in my heart that through Christ I've been renewed.
Even if your part of the world isn't looking much like spring, I hope each of you have special moments of spring happiness in your heart this Easter weekend.
N. E. Mink

Enjoy a yummy Easter!

A Robin's Morning


As the sun shines bright through the front room blinds, I just know it is going to be a good day!
I know it is hard to see this cheerful robin in the top of our old oak tree, but if you play the short clip you will surely hear his joyous song. Robins are sitting atop most of our trees, facing the sunrise and gazing at snow capped Mt. Hood in the distance.
This burbler and small alpine pond is just outside our bedroom. Because of the gentle flow over the rock, it's a favorite place for delicate hummingbirds to bath.
Oops, better let my helper back in!
There's evidence that birds are looking for nesting spots. Black-cap chickadees nested in this home last summer. We added a large twig inside the box as a ladder for the little ones to exit. I see there are some large twigs scattered around and on top of the home; I guess some bird thinks the hole is larger than it really is!
There's a light frost this early morning. The frosted, colored mosses on this rock remind me of underwater coral reefs.
The pink buds of the almond tree will be open by tomorrow!
English heather is in full bloom. Our honey bees love it! They will be here this afternoon in the warm sun; too cold this morning for them. I added my own bees :o)
Fifteen yards (a large dump truck) of mushroom compost is being delivered tomorrow. Then the "work" starts. Glen is so excited about shovelling it! Go figure. I'm excited about taking these signs down and placing them where they belong in the beds for this year's garden.
Cotton, our 11 month yellow lab, feels it is her duty to chew and defrost the ice off of all the bird baths. The birdies thank her with un-ending entertainment throughout the day.
Bags of seed potatoes await planting...after Glen shovels the compost into the beds!
It's hard to pull me away from yard duty, but my painting awaits. Today I am painting fun kitchen and tea settings. I may have to add a bird into the mix somehow. You know that is Portland's saying, don't you? "Just add a bird to it!"

Perfect in beauty, God shines forth. Psalm 50:2

Have a beautiful day!