Monday, November 24, 2014

Blue Pearl Farms in McClellanville

I mentioned that I wanted to share the healthy things that catch my eye.....Blue Pearl Farms in McClellanville, South Carolina is topping the list today.  Blueberries.  Bees. Blue Crab.  Yes, I was at our beautiful Charleston Farmer's Market on Saturday and have seen this stand before but never stopped.

The thing is I feel like I have done nothing but clean and wipe down walls and window sills and....well, it's a renovation people. What can I say?  My hands felt like sand paper.  And, I have been doing a lot of reading about how much our skin really does absorb the toxins in things like soaps and lotions. So....

Here is a simple answer.  These tiny tins of Buzz Cream.  8 bucks and guess what?  I recognize EVERY, single ingredient listed!  Happy me :)  Pure water, olive oil, coconut oil, Blue Pearl Farms Beeswax, cocoa butter, honey from our bees, and sweet almond chemicals, no preservatives.  LOVE IT!

A quick glimpse of their Farmer's Market stand?  Blueberry compote, honey, beeswax candles, blueberry chipotle bbq sauce, lip balm, and, OMG, totally amazing Brittle Buzz!!  A peanut brittle made from honey that is so light, it melts in your mouth.  You can order it all online here as well.

Blue Pearl Farms
9760 Randall Road
McClellanville, SC 29458

Hope everyone is gearing up for a fabulous Thanksgiving!!  Happy Monday from Charleston Treasures!

Friday, November 14, 2014

We're Baaaack!

I know.  I know.  March 5th, my last blog post, was a pretty long time ago.  Well, the truth is I've been pretty busy.  That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!

So, in March, we were searching for a downtown property, beginning a tour business, thinking about nutrition workshops and raising our six kiddos.  Since that time, well, the list is endless.  I'm going to give you the short version.  Okay?

We had three contracts on three properties in downtown and they each fell through.  All by the grace of God I say now while looking back.  We did find a house.  THE house. THE PERFECT HOUSE. We bought it.  We packed up. We moved in.  All within the last three weeks of our rental contract expiring.  Pretty impressive, right?  That was July.  

We had a greatly successful first summer tour season, started an add-on company for ghost tours (, got settled into our house, got one kid into high school, got three kids settled into college, taught some summer kids cooking workshops and then, made plans to totally tear up said house. 

Now, it is November and almost Thanksgiving.  We have an amazing contractor and crew who are plugging away daily at the to-do list.  It looks kind of like this....*Create a second full bath, do a ton of painting, redo the laundry room, open and replace the stair case, replace a lot of rotted siding, completely remake two driveways, build a deck for morning coffee, create an outdoor teaching/eating space with an attached grill and relocate a storage building. Did I mention that all the while we are living in said house while getting to know this constant stream of hard-working people who are striving each day to create our sanctuary?

So, I suppose you might be asking the question "Why are you back? Why the blog?"  Well, I have decided to take Charleston Treasures in a new direction.  The direction of our future actually.  We focus daily on health and wellness and living a unique and sustainable life.  We are trying to cut back on our garbage, grow a lot of our own food, bike instead of drive when possible, and basically reuse, reduce and recycle as much as possible.  There.  I said it all.  I really believe that some days I am turning into a hippie but it all feels right so, I'm good with that :)

Sooo, on my blog these days, you can expect to learn as I learn just as you explored as we explored when we first moved to South Carolina.  What really is the growing season for fruits and veggies in the south?  How in the world do I compost?  (I really don't even like worms!) Is meditation really a way to reduce my stress levels?  Yoga?  Of course, there will be recipes and pictures of our kids but also, ways to feel better about your self and this crazy world in which we live.  

I leave you with some pictures of the current state of my backyard.  Remember that it is still a construction zone for another few weeks.  But, as soon as that is finished, the planting and organizing and growing or planning to grow will begin.

We do have a lot and a half and a good bit of space for some raised beds and fruit trees.  (Especially when our beautiful purple porta-potty goes back home!)  Right now, I am in the planning stages and am studying and learning each day.  What a process!  But, just like remodeling, the end result is going to be amazing.  And, I have gotten to know the librarians fairly well at the Charleston Co. library...

Oh, Chicken Health?  You caught that, huh?  That one has been an ongoing debate in our house for about five years.  I am still wanting fresh eggs daily and am going to continue to learn so when the mister finally agrees, I am ready.  And, yes, you actually can house chickens downtown according to the ordinance...with a few stipulations.  We will see....

For now, thank you so much for coming back to Charleston Treasures to see what's up.  We are plugging away, creating our lives and reinventing ourselves each day and life just keeps getting better and better!!  Have a great week-end! 

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

An Impromptu Lunch at Sermet's

Have you ever just wondered into a restaurant on the fly and hoped for the best?  To be honest, we usually do our research.  What can I say?  We like what we like and I like to know my meal options ahead of time. But, every once in a while, we just wander in.  That's how we arrived at Sermet's...

The staff was scrambling, busy but we weren't in a hurry and the service was actually pretty quick anyway.  We simply wandered in for lunch.  We both ordered hot bowls of soup....Easy to see why in this crazy weather, right?

Totally delicious on both accounts.  I decided on a salmon salad.  Let me just tell you....

Incredibly done salmon, fresh greens, Gorgonzola cheese crumbles, and a poached pear topped with mango green apple champagne vinaigrette.  I only wish I could make salmon that was that delicious at home.  I love salmon.  Yes, I mostly eat a vegetarian diet but this salmon made me swoon!

The Mister ordered a grilled chicken sandwich topped with swiss, smoked bacon, and basil aioli with a side of sweet potato fries topped with Parmesan.  I can attest to the deliciousness of these fries.  Those of you who know me, know my complete adoration of french fries!  Score!

We enjoyed our lunch at Sermet's.  It is located at 276 King Street and super easy to find.  Great staff and great food.  We hope to return soon and enjoy some live music!!  

Click HERE to see their schedule of upcoming shows.  You can find this information online by searching The Mezz Jazz Club.  They aren't free but I would imagine that they would be well worth the dollars especially if you are a jazz lover!

Sermet's Corner on Urbanspoon

Stop by.  You might just see us there!!  Stay warm and Happy Wednesday from Charleston Treasures!!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Asheville, NC

I just really feel compelled to share this Bed and Breakfast with you....The Biltmore Village Inn.  This is not my photo~it was tagged You can tell because it most definitely looks like summer, right?  And, believe me, the wind that was whipping up in Asheville was NOT summer wind.  However, this is a beautiful spot regardless of the season!

I know.  I know.  This blog is supposed to be about Charleston but sometimes, we venture away from our own unique, beautiful city!  The mister surprised me with this little getaway for my birthday and even reserved the Honeymoon Cottage.  Totally gorgeous B & B and fabulous Mister!  So, some pictures from our stay.  Every room was unique, vintage and fabulous...

I don't have any pictures from the Biltmore visit but we did stop in the Basilica St. Lawrence.  We have stopped in churches in every city we have ever visited.  It's definitely our thing. 

And, after this stop, we spent some time in downtown Asheville browsing.  I always use the term wandering the streets when we stroll here in Charleston.  Anyway, we happened upon this place....

The Chocolate Fetish.  The chocolate shoes were totally amazing and so were all of the treats we walked out with and ate as we wandered around town!  Good thing we spent the afternoon walking :)

Asheville is a neat, little place.  We had fantastic sandwiches at Loretta's Cafe and just enjoyed the time away.  My Elkins, WV readers could totally relate if I were to compare Loretta's to the Kissel Stop.  Yes?  Great sandwiches.  Rich soups. 

I am home today trying to pretend that my throat is not a bit scratchy even though it is and I am hoping to feel fever free as tonight we have our salsa test for our first belt....similar to karate except the music is super fast and the people are outrageous!

Hope you are having a great afternoon and enjoying the "briskness".  Is that even a word?  Okay, freezing temperatures.  Better?  Happy Tuesday from Charleston Treasures and stay warm!

Monday, March 3, 2014

My Birthday Week

Road Trip!  My birthday was last week and the Mister surprised me with a short jaunt to Asheville, NC.  We were supposed to check out this town last March but his Mom fell and broke her hip.  Trip cancelled.  So.....Wednesdsay, we packed a bag and enjoyed a sun-filled day on the road.  A four hour trip isn't bad for two days of fun!

Thursday was spent touring an incredible, unique spot.  The Biltmore.  Simply amazing!  No photos were allowed inside but, I can definitely say~Put this on your list of places to see!

My birthday celebrations continued even after we got home.  The Mister had been grabbing lunch in the market and ordered an entire set of these...

Don't you love them? The Palmetto design will surely brighten our new kitchen and bathrooms.  I love it when he thinks out-of-the-box and surprises me!  I still stand by the fact that I really don't like surprises. Although, I guess it's the waiting that I don't really like.  So, I'm good if I don't know the surprise exists?!?  Whatever, right?  These can be found in the Charleston City Market and are hand painted by Mary Lou.  I do have her business card.  Message me if you are interested in her information.

Saturday evening, I had one last birthday celebration.  My Mom came over and commandeered my kitchen (not an easy task if you know me at all!) and prepared some Frogmore Stew.  She even showed up with a chocolate cake with chocolate icing and mint chocolate chip ice cream.  She knows me so well!

Lastely, I have spent the past two days on the couch.  (Insert frowny face here.)  I have been sick.  First, my Mom.  Then, Stephan Michael.  Now, me.  So, I have had some time to sleep and sleep and drink a ton of fresh juices.  Blood oranges, flax seed and raw honey definitely helped!

And, this morning~ spinach, celery, parsley, flax seeds and chia seeds did the trick.  I finally feel back to normal!  I always love it when my juice turns out my favorite color!

I want to leave you with a new blog to check out.  Local Goodness.  I met Jessica during the Food Lion Frugal Cookoff and was so impressed with her blog premise.  She actually teaches people to preserve or can home grown food.  Creative idea, right?  You should definitely check out her site when you have some time.  She is beginning some classes, too!

I have so much to be grateful for and I totally am.  Even while feeling under the weather, I had a great birthday week with my kids and the Mister.  The past six days of this year have been incredible.  Thanks, kiddos, Mister and Mom!!  

Tomorrow, I plan to share our incredible Bed and Breakfast with you.  It made our stay in Asheville even more pleasant.  And, unlike the Biltmore, I was able to take a ton of pictures.  Check back tomorrow?

Hope you are finding some sunshine today~it's a bit grey here this afternoon.  But, Happy Monday anyway, from Charleston Treasures!!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Coastal Cupboard, Mark's Massage and My Foodie Stuff!

Whew!  I am breathing a sigh of relief!  It has been a crazy few days.  You can tell, can't you?  You haven't heard from me since Friday?!?  Well, let me just tell you....and, remember, I am ALLLL about gratitude these days.

Friday, gratitude came so very easily.  The mister and I decided to visit Coastal Cupboard at lunch and check out a cooking class.  Not interactive in the sense that we were chopping and dicing but most definitely interactive in that we had an amazing chef sharing kitchen tales and tidbits of good info. with us.

He was in constant motion so getting a good shot was a bit difficult but it was absolutely a fun experience.  Stephen Harman is their in-house chef and he is king of the kitchen.  He started out by letting us know that our dessert was already in the making....butter pecan ice cream.  Then, he quickly put together Goat Cheese and Asparagus soup made fresh in his Vitamix.  I have to love anyone who cooks with my favorite appliance!

Is that not the most beautiful color of green?  It was topped with some pickled shrimp and red pepper and even the mister liked it and he detests asparagus!  We then got to watch the creations of red rice and a beautiful grouper.  These are both recipes that we'll be having at home very soon!

And, dessert was freshly made peanut brittle over that butter pecan ice cream.  You don't see a picture of that because it was gone VERY quickly.  So much fun!  I definitely recommend this experience for those of you who are interested in learning more about cooking!  Like I said, Friday was an easy gratitude day!

Saturday, we met some relatives for lunch at Lowcountry Bistro.  Gratitude?  A Mahi-Mahi salad.  Will definitely be ordering that again on the next visit.  We enjoyed a leisurely lunch with our relatives from Atlanta and Charlotte.

Sunday  was spent in my own kitchen.  I was grateful for the time to prep some things for a busy Monday and Tuesday.  It looked a bit like this...

Freshly chopped carrots and cauliflower.  Fresh pineapple.  Pasta with beans and sauteed onions and garlic.  Enchiladas stuffed with quinoa and roasted carrots with tumeric.  And, a whole wheat chocolate chip cookie topped with salty pretzels.  My kiddos will always reach for fresh fruits and veggies is they are cleaned and readily available.  I'll do this same thing again mid-week with a variety of produce and keep everyone happy!

Yesterday, I spent the day filling in for a friend at one of my favorite shops downtown.  Away 2 Insights.  While there, I also got a massage from this guy...

Mark is a licensed massage therapist and also has an intuitive side that makes a simple massage an amazing experience.  Visit the site if you are interested in scheduling time with him!

See?  I told you I've been busy!  Today's gratitude?  This flyer is ready to go and I am so ready to teach!  If you know kiddos who are interested in learning healthy kitchen habits, you know how to get in touch with me!

I'm heading out shortly for a quick bite at Five Loaves and then, on to Salsa lessons!  I love my life!  Hope you love yours as well!  Happy Tuesday from Charleston Treasures!!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Food Lion Frugal Cook-Off

Go, Food Lion!  They sponsored the Frugal Cook-Off at Charleston Cooks and yours truly was invited to participate.  It was Iron Chef-Charleston style....eight bloggers, a $15.00 budget, a surprise protein and 45 minutes to cook a dinner for four!

I was definitely nervous but also excited!  I had never competed in the food arena.  I cook at home on the fly often.  Standing in front of my own pantry and seeing what I can create but this was definitely different.  Not only was I working with a partner that I had just met, I was doing it all with cameras and video and three judges sitting on the front row. 

My partner, Sydney, is the creator of the blog Queen of the Food Age

We are holding our dish right before presentation to the judges.  We ended up getting Tilapia as our protein~ a godsend for a vegetarian who occasionally eats fish!  We also made a cucumber and onion salad tossed in a sweetened vinegar with a rice pilaf made with sauteed onions, garlic and peas. 

Today, now that I have had some time to process it all, I am so grateful for this experience.  It was entirely fun!  So, I guess this is gratitude for yesterday and for today's gratitude....

I want to share with you all of the fantastic bloggers who participated!  I was so grateful for all of the experiences and knowledge that they each brought to the competition.  I know that you will truly enjoy checking out these blogs.  They are very different and each one is unique. 

·       Megan Baker – Fried Green Pickles 
·       Brittany Greer – Counting my Cupcakes
·       Lisa Caplinger – Charleston Treasures
·       Valerie Kirkland – LiveFit Journey
·       Jessica Paulsen – Local Goodness
·       Sydney Gallimore – Queen of the Food Age
·       Katie Perkinson – The Perks
·       Shelby Hanchey – Recent Somethings

I do have one more surprise from Food Lion.  It involves a gift card....I'm not quite ready to share that part with you, though.  I leave you with this video of the competition.  You can get a feel for what the experience was really like.  

Food Lion Frugal Cook-Off, Charleston 2014 from Third Floor on Vimeo.

I hope this Friday finds you looking forward to a fantastic week-end ahead.  It looks like it might be a rainy one~pack the umbrella! 

Happy Friday from Charleston Treasures and check back soon for this Food Lion gift card surprise and the recipe to our fish dish!
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