About Dana

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I'm a dichotomy of blue jeans, pretty jewelry, frugalista, and Southern girl living the simple rural life. I want to live my life holistically, thoughtfully, economically, and most of all gratefully, and encourage other women to do the same.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Southern Iced Green Tea

Southern Iced Green Tea

You know I’m Southern and that must mean I’m a sweet tea drinker, right? Well, sort of. I used to be addicted to my sweet tea, which is made from black tea leaves. But with the help of an alternative physician, I found the tannins in black tea were making my heartburn situation worse. It was a daily affair for me and one that I didn’t want to give up, but I did give it up cold turkey when I was told it would make me feel better. And it did.

OK, so back to being a Southerner. I MUST have my sweet tea, so I found a substitute. It only took me about a week to get used to the switcheroo, and now that I have, I won’t be going back. Here’s my recipe for iced green tea.

Southern Iced Green Tea

5 family size green tea bags (I have found it important to use green tea bags especially for making iced tea, as the other tea bags don’t seem to taste as good. I use Luzianne because it tastes the best to me.

About 2 quarts of water (a little more or less is OK; it just depends on how strong you want your tea. I like it strong.)

½ cup turbinado sugar (that’s brown, unrefined “raw” sugar)

1 tablespoon Stevia

Pinch of baking soda

Remove the paper tags and tie the tea bags together. Place them in a 2 quart pot and add cold water to the top. Place on the stove on high and remove from the heat just as the water begins to boil. Add a pinch of baking soda and let the tea bags steep for 5 minutes.

Remove the tea bags and discard (or add them to your compost bin – they’re great for garden plants). Add the sugar and Stevia and stir to dissolve. Pour into a gallon pitcher and top off the rest of the pitcher with cold water. Stir and refrigerate. I find the tea tastes best when it can sit in the refrigerator overnight or at least 8 hours.

This version is a little healthier than traditional Southern sweet tea because of the sweeteners used and the health benefits of green tea.

Hope you enjoy!

Monday, May 16, 2011

What I'm Reading in May

As I write this on a beautiful (non-humid!!) Sunday afternoon on the banks of the Broad River, I am enjoying the sounds of birds singing, the flap of Canadian geese’s wings flying over the water, and a just-what-the-doctor-ordered breeze. What a perfect day to be outside with a good book.

Just as I’ve never been one of the earliest adopters of technology, I am not one of the earliest readers of the latest books. I find to be the first is pricey at the book store and downright impossible at the library. I put myself on the waiting list at my local library when The Weird Sisters came out, and I was 60th in line!

So in May, I have been reading Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat.Pray.Love. And no, I haven’t seen the movie. I would never do that before reading the book. I’m not sure that I have ever liked a movie better than the book on which it’s based.

For those of you who haven’t read it, I would recommend it as a fun read. Elizabeth’s true story of self-exploration and self-realization is divided into three parts: her travels post-divorce over the course of a year to Italy (Eat), India (Pray), and Indonesia (Love). I have made my way through Italy and India so far and have been entertained by Elizabeth’s clever use of words. I will say from my viewpoint, her descriptions of her life in Italy left me feeling a little sad. And as a Christian, some of her religious insights seem a little hocus-pocus to me. However, all in all, she is an entertaining writer, and this is her partial autobiography, so she is free to tell her story how she sees it.

You won’t have to wait in a long line to pick this one up at the library, although it is still new enough to be in the Popular Reading section. Try it. I think you’ll like it.

Happy reading. Now it’s time for the nap portion of my day by the river.