it’s all happening

Violets seem a little magical to me. Just a few days ago I looked around the yard, and there was no sign of them, though I knew it would be soon. Then I came home yesterday, glanced down, and low and behold, little purple buds peppered the landscape. A thick patch right outside the back porch door. Another cluster in the back of the yard, behind the garage. And yet more on the field next door which my neighbor graciously lets me and the girls use as our own.

I promptly told the kids which areas were off limits, lest they stomp all over my precious bounty. The buds are almost ready, and I figure by Saturday morning they should be perfect for picking. We have a small window before heading to school for the annual Book Fair. The girls have been bugging me about the secret theme (I know what it is), but it’s a secret for a reason. They’ll have to wait until the grand unveiling on Saturday. If you find yourself up near Woodstock, come join us at Woodstock Day School for some merriment, a bouncy castle, face painting, and a celebration for our love of books. Twenty percent of all book sales will benefit the school libary (plus, you’ll get to help support The Golden Notebook, a local bookstore in town).

With my thoughts of violets, my mind wanders to what weekends will look like as the growing season wakes up from its winter slumber. It’ll be a balancing act of taking time to enjoy the little victories from my garden (blueberries, raspberries, and lots of fresh herbs), visiting my favorite farmstands here in the Hudson Valley, and getting familiar with the farmers’ markets in the D.C. metro area since we’ll soon be starting a new chapter in North Bethesda, MD.

Yes, we’re on the go again. But this time rather than running away from fears, I’m facing them head on. I’m taking the chance that I’m strong enough to do this all over again. I know the rules—someone has to go first, but I also know the benefits. And with one swift motion of my pen, I have a new lease on life.


Video Pairing: It’s All Happening

Homemade Violet Syrup from Use Real Butter

My two cents on making violet syrup.

Flower Power: Cooking with Violets from The Telegraph.

Violet Jelly from Healthy Green Kitchen.

Desperately Seeking Spring from Iris Weaver.

Raspberry & Violet Tarts from Chocolate & Zucchini.

Make you your own candied violets! from Use Real Butter



  • Mandi

    (Soon-to-be) Welcome to the DC area! I live in NW DC and it’s a great area to live and eat! And best wishes as you leave the safety of shore!

  • Wendy

    Welcome to MoCo! Hope you and your girls will like it here! I live nearby and shop in the area and had kids go through several schools!

  • Amber

    Oh, Jennie! Many blessings to you, your girls, and your new adventure. I hope we will still all get to see your journey unfold, as I have told you countless times in your comments thread that you give me hope that someday I’ll too be open opening my heart again. So very proud of you!

  • Maria @ Dolcelicious Bake Shoppe

    Good for you Jennie…follow your heart, it really is just that simple…

  • Mary

    So many wishes of happiness are sent to you and to your girls. You are taking your journey in such a sensible way. May this stop be a fantastic one!

  • Kal

    You just got there and you’ve moving again? Oh my….Jennie is setting sail! I live in Annapolis MD having just retired from the USMC recently we have dropped anchor here. I hope you will love it!

  • Susan

    Congratulations on moving forward. yes, it’s scary, but so is being stuck. good luck on the move and settling in to your new surroundings. Thanks for taking us on your journey!! Many happy days are ahead.

  • Amishi Shah

    Good luck with the move. We live 10 minutes from North Bethesda. As you will see soon – the lines between North Bethesda, Rockville, White Flint blur at some point. We have some really good farmers markets in this area. Wish you and your family the very best! You are an inspiration to many

  • Kristen

    We live in the DC area too! You’ll love it here. SO much to do, but DC is a pretty unintimidating city, especially if you are used to New York. MD is just full of farms and the fall in this area is a lot of fun. We are moving too, in just a few weeks–to the rural area West of DC–I wish you lots of luck and elbow grease.

  • Carolyn

    Welcome to the DC area – I live in Bethesda, just outside the downtown area (most restaurants per capita in the entire region including DC). I am not a regular reader of your blog but was reminded of it now that my husband passed away three weeks ago leaving me a widow with 2 daughters. Your writing has been a great comfort and reminder that I still have a long way to go but that life does go on.

  • Laura Timms

    Welcome to the area! I’ve been tasting your last few years worth of inspiration via your blog, IG, and book… Just caught up and saw you are now a few miles away! My husb and I are also NY transplants – he LI; I, western…. But we have come to love and appreciate what this area has to offer! Warm hugs from Rockville 🙂

  • Jamie

    I moved to Montgomery County 12 years ago and I absolutely love it! The farmers markets and the farms stands just outside of the metro area are wonderful. We love the Silver Spring, Dupont and Takoma farmers markets 🙂 Welcome to the DC metro area!!