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Everlasting Salad

2015 April 15
by Rachel Turiel

everlasting salad

Arugula from the cold frames, planted last October.

We’re eating through the magical forest of arugula: hack away at an armful and watch it reinvent itself while you sleep, like Madonna. (Conversely, I’ve been watching hairs turn curiously grey, and it’s just like that, a hair formerly a rich compost brown simply turns grey). I’ve been engaging in April seed therapy, scattering seeds in the greenhouse, garden beds, cold frames, small labeled pots, unmarked troughs, feeling like my own clichéd caricature of dotty hopefulness.

ev salad4

When you’re dotty and turning grey you can start growing datura.

Col’s homeschool co-op is exploring the light and breezy topic of “Life Purpose.” Yesterday we discussed the feeling of being “in the flow,” to which children are so strongly magnetized. This explains why, as our house is going up in metaphorical flames (“We’re supposed to have shoes on now!”), Col is serenely drawing and Rose cartwheeling into nirvana.

everlasting salad2

I spent the afternoon with Rose and her 2 BFFs on Sunday. Between playing “teenagers” (Lets say my name is Jazzlynn and I’m on the train with my cat. Commence furious teenaged texting on cardboard phone) and sparkling at full freaking tilt, they held impromptu breakout sessions to manage their interpersonal conflict. While I spend my Monday nights dousing the fires of my deluded, craving mind at the Durango Dharma Center, and my Thursday afternoons figuring out how to get along with people at my Conscious Communication Group, these girls are working out who gets to play the Kitty figurine in real time. It’s not about being conflict-free, it’s about being able to comfortably work that shit out. (And they do, they do). And then returning to the work of sparkling.

everlasting salad3

Col, at ten, still finds the occasion of Dan and I dancing together in the living room to be an opportunity not to shirk away embarrassedly, but to insinuate his small, lovely self between us. He had a personal epiphany in the Trimble Hot Springs changing room the other night, something about how while he still really likes the aesthetics of airplane design “it’s more that when you fly you feel like you’re in control and there’s no one telling you what to do.” (A slightly troubling attitude which might land him at the Durango Dharma Center or similar spiritual bootcamp in 20 years). The upshot of which is that he thinks he can achieve this same feeling in a boat. On water. Which is closer to being on land than 20,000 feet in the air. (I mean really, are there any mothers who wholeheartedly support their children piloting small aircraft over the Rocky Mountains?) So, we’re renting an experimental canoe this weekend. The plan is to fish and lounge while Col paddles us around feeling like he’s in control.

ev salad

Also, we’re making volumes of Everlasting Salad. This is a hardy, improvisational salad which gets reinvented and added to as the week goes on. The point is to have a quick, easy, highly-vegetal meal to constantly draw from. In it goes everything that won’t wilt quickly, namely: cabbage, arugula, grated carrots and beets, parsley, dandelion greens, kale, cilantro. We dress it with olive oil and rice/balsamic vinegar. It’s an act of freeform love. Dan will start a bowl of Everlasting Salad, I’ll scoop out a lunch’s worth, add a handful of arugula and a grated carrot and put it back in the fridge, he’ll pile it on our plates for dinner before chopping up a cabbage to replace what he took. Occasionally we get to the bottom of it.

Take 1:everlasting salad4

Take 243:ev salad2The salad dressing is olive oil and vinegar, 2:1, actually we never measure.

Kids bowls with friendly add ins: cheese and raisins.

ev salad3

Last night at dinner Col and Rose were talking about who wants to be whose girlfriend or boyfriend, and who has a crush on who. Rose reported, “Alex likes me and Dewa. Kailas likes Fawn.” (These names, I know). I asked Col, “And what girl are you interested in?” “Just you, Mama,” he replied. Smart kid. But that still won’t get you a ride in an airplane.

15 Responses leave one →
  1. Mollie permalink
    April 15, 2015

    This post cheered me up on all sorts of levels.

  2. April 15, 2015

    I love the idea of an everlasting salad! Oh, I will be finding a place in my ice box for my own everlasting salad! Thank you.

  3. Melissa permalink
    April 15, 2015

    Just you mama. I can’t even take it. Plus, that salad. Swoon.

  4. Ellen permalink
    April 15, 2015

    A bottomless bowl of shredded raw vegetables. Heaven!

  5. Heather permalink
    April 15, 2015

    As the wife of a pilot, I’d not discourage aviation. I was wooed high above the earth in a single engine in college; now we get to travel the world for free.

    (But when I think of the flying we did in college- lots of stalls and drops for fun- I would quickly discourage my own children!)

    • Rachel Turiel permalink*
      April 15, 2015

      Duly noted and appreciated.

  6. michelle permalink
    April 15, 2015

    Me too! I think it’s the colors that lifted me!

  7. April 15, 2015

    AWES(OM)E entry!!!

    oh, and by the way?

    Dewa thinks ALL boys.. “stink and are stupid,”
    and she told me that she, “is DEFINITELY NOT EVER GETTING MARRIED!”

    Daddy replied, “You go, Ghoul-Friend!”

    thank you (and Rosie, and Col, and Dan) for being who you choose to be…

    • Rachel Turiel permalink*
      April 15, 2015

      I promise not to tell you when Dewa comes to Auntie Rachel to discuss her latest crushes.

  8. Andrea permalink
    April 17, 2015

    It’s really something, isn’t it? The grey hairs, I mean.

  9. Chi-An permalink
    April 18, 2015

    Ok, I have to ask- why datura? I saw the name and thought “isn’t that the poison that is famous because Indian women allegedly used it to poison their husbands?” And I followed your link and yes, it is poisonous. Beautiful flowers, but potentially deadly. So you are growing it because…?

  10. April 23, 2015

    I love how much color was in this blog post. I would take all that salad and put it in a spring roll wrap. :)

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