Who needs a farm to become a farmer?
By Jennifer Shapira
Washington, D.C.-based landscape architect Jennifer G. Horn says one of the most significant changes she has seen in how people react to their outdoor spaces, is a real interest in grow-your-own vegetable gardening. For a recent large-scale design in McLean, Horn folded in a cheerful mix of pick-your-own blossoms and edibles, creating a patch in the landscape that serves just that purpose: the backyard-to-table gardening where the fruits of your labors end up in that night’s salad, the blossoms tidily arranged in a vase.
The landscape can include “a vegetable garden, as well as a cut-flower and herb garden. And they can be beautiful,” Horn says. “If you really want to spend some money, you can do a raised bed with masonry walls, and pea gravel path” that meanders through a garden, says Horn.
A novice green thumb might start out with a couple of small-scale pots or containers for growing summer’s bounty, to evaluate your home’s sun and shade, as well as your own levels of skill and dedication. Experts caution that there is a fair amount of work involved, and that while a kitchen garden may sound romantic, the commitment is clearly not for everyone.
“We’ll certainly ask if a client wants an edible garden,” she says. “Most of the time the client wants to do it. I wouldn’t suggest it for a client who wasn’t serious about it, because it’s a lot of work. And if you have deer, you have to think about how you’re going to keep the deer away from it. That’s another potential limitation for a vegetable garden.”
Keeping deer from munching on local landscapes is a challenge in this area, says Harley, adding there’s not much they don’t eat. His best suggestion is to put in plants that they absolutely do not like, such as boxwoods.
“They don’t care for things with fragrances, like lavender, rosemary—all the herbs. They tend to not like those because their sense of smell is much stronger and it’s just too much for them,” he says. “The ones that they do like in particular are: hostas and daylilies. Those two they’ll seek out.”
But Harley cautions that there’s no hard-and-fast solution because their diets have changed; if they’re hungry, they’ll eat just about anything. “You just put in the ones you know they don’t eat now,” he says, “and cross your fingers.”
Burglars Hit 10 McLean Homes; Air Force Chief of Sex Assault Prevention Charged with Sexual Battery; Man Jumps onto Tracks at Courthouse Metro Station; Fairfax County Struggles Between Urban and Suburban Development; Girl with Brain Cancer Gets Surprise from Her Prince Charming; Student Suspended for Pointing Pencil Like Gun
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Burglars Hit 10 Homes Within Hours in McLean
Air Force Chief of Sex Assault Prevention Charged with Sexual Battery
Man Jumps onto Tracks at Courthouse Metro Station
Fairfax County Struggles Between Urban and Suburban Development
Little Girl with Brain Cancer Gets Surprise of a Lifetime from Her “Prince Charming”
Va. Boy Suspended for Pointing Pencil Like Gun
(Compiled by Jasmine Lee)
Posted by Skylar Korby / Friday, May 3rd, 2013
Steve Madden, one of the world’s hottest shoe and lifestyle brands will be holding a meet and greet tomorrow, May 4, from 2-3 p.m. at Nordstrom at Tysons Corner Center. Guests are invited to meet the footwear tycoon and pose for photos as he autographs complimentary branded tees and tote bags at the event hosted by Julissa Bermudez of the Style Network’s hit series “Empire Girls.”
A special gift will be given to every customer with the purchase of any Steve Madden product, and visitors will also have the chance to win their very own pair of Steve Madden shoes!
You definitely don’t want to miss this event, so strut your stuff to Tysons this weekend!
Inova Opens “Crown Jewel” Medical Facility in Leesburg; Human Trafficking Meeting in McLean Today; Crime Solvers Lauds Work of Public-Safety Personnel; Missing Gainesville Boy Found Safe; Board Nears Vote on Crowding Solutions for Fairfax High School
Friday, May 3, 2013:
Inova Opens “Crown Jewel” in Leesburg
Human Trafficking Meeting in McLean Today
Crime Solvers Lauds Work of Public-Safety Personnel
Missing Gainesville Boy Found Safe
Board Nears Vote on Crowding Solutions for Fairfax High School
Posted by David Schuller / Friday, April 26th, 2013
You might wonder if combining a choir with an orchestra would be a good idea (it is). You might wonder why you would perform said combination in a church (because it sounds great). You might even ask yourself, “Why are they pitching another classical music performance?”
Because classical music is awesome and should be required listening for everyone. Always.
What we define as classical music is a combination of Avant-garde (a $10 word for “experimental” artwork) masterpieces from Enlightenment Era Europe. What sets this music apart from traditional, or cultural music, is the formulation of music theory, a field of study aiming to map, define and better understand how music works. And really, in an era before television and the Internet, people were dying to be entertained by long, dramatic narratives that weren’t a plague or a peasant uprising.
In other words, classical music might just be the ultimate synthesis of left-brain control and study, and right-brain inspiration, experimentation and creativity.
This is where the Amadeus Orchestra and the Fairfax Choral Society come in. Together, the ensemble is performing Steve Dobrogosz’s haunting masterpiece, “Requiem,” a piece Amadeus Concerts predicts “is destined to become a mainstay in the choral-orchestral repertoire.” Dobrogosz, an American composer living in Sweden, has an expansive musical history of crossing genres, concentrating as of late on orchestral/choral arrangements.
And if you’re wondering why the performance is in a church, it’s because churches and cathedrals and the like are acoustic masterpieces of architecture. If you ever get a chance to hear pieces like these playied in a church, do so. It sounds great.
The Amadeus Orchestra and the Fairfax Choral Society
Saint Luke Catholic Church
7001 Georgetown Pike, McLean
(703) 356-1255; amadeusconcerts.com
Here are some examples of “Il Signor Bruschino” and “Pulcinella”:
Il Signor Buschino
Posted by Octavia Silva / Tuesday, April 9th, 2013
This is your opportunity to get right back on track with your new years’ resolution long left in the dust. Summer is almost here and so are much more pleasant ways to exercise. Who could prefer a gym to warmth and Vitamin D by the tons? No one. Outdoor activities of all kinds will be showcased and offered at ‘Be Fit McLean Outdoor Adventure Expo,’ coming to Northern Virginia on April 27. Perhaps it’ll give you the motivation you need to try something a little more extreme that could turn out be the most rewarding, uplifting thing you’ve ever done. You never know!
Posted by Kate V. Comfort / Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013
Oh, Canada: Our enterprising neighbors to the north have combined two of fast-food’s finest creating the Pizzaburger (yep, it’s exactly what you think it is). [Eater]
Making one fast food staple decidedly decadent (and, likely even more unhealthy) Clarendon’s La Tagliatella introduces pizza topped with foie gras and duck ham. [Thrillist]
Walmart may be conveniently changing “sell by” dates to extend the shelf life of baked goods [HuffPost]
Will the beer and hotdogs be sidelined as baseball’s go-to food? Fluffy Thoughts bakery of McLean, aims to offer a sweeter side of stadium concessions selling cupcakes at Nationals’ home games. [Patch]
I understand the poor college student’s need to mix soda with terrible, cheap liquor to make it palatable. However, Italian Wine Merchants report a trend of wealthy Chinese commonly adding soda to rare and hyper-expensive wines. Wine snobs everywhere gasp is horror. [ItalianWineMerchants]
If you are selling your home, it’s time to put on your buyer hat.
By Terry Belt
If you’re selling a home in Northern Virginia right now, things are looking good for you. Homes that are priced right and prepared properly are selling quickly and prices are starting to rise. So far this year, 898 homes in Fairfax County have gone under contract. The average days on market for those homes was under two months, but the range of days on market varied immensely. Some homes sold the same day they went on the market, others were on the market for five years. Here’s a sampling of statistics so far in 2013:
Falls Church: 95 sales, 42 percent sold in 2 weeks or less, some took 417 days
Great Falls: 9 sales, 11 percent sold in 2 weeks or less, some took 305 days
McLean: 52 sales, 44 percent sold in 2 weeks or less, some took 657 days
Oakton: 18 sales, 17 percent sold in 2 weeks or less, some took 147 days
Reston: 64 sales, 47 percent sold in 2 weeks or less, some took 203 days
Vienna: 57 sales, 49 percent sold in 2 weeks or less, some took 394 days
No one wants to stay on the market that long. They certainly don’t want to keep their house in showing condition day after day, month after month. And, more importantly, statistics show that the longer you are on the market, the less your home will sell for. So why such a large variation? We think it’s because some sellers just can’t put on their “buyer hat.”
When we meet with our sellers, we recommend a focus on the way buyers think. It’s hard to do if you’re leaving a home you have enjoyed living in. But, if you want to maximize your return and sell quickly, it’s time to put on your “buyer hat”. See here for more specific tips on transforming your home into the house buyers are interested in.
This dependable green keeps skin bright and waists tight by packing bounties of nutrients and healthy antioxidants with its winter-loving leaves.
By Jennie Tai
wine and slice
“My tool for working with cabbage,” says Chef Brian McPherson, “is wine and a razor sharp knife,” such as a 12-inch French Misono. The executive chef of Alexandria’s Jackson 20 and The Grille at Morison House “marinates red cabbage for 72 hours in a Bordeaux-style red wine before I slow braise it … for around 5 to 6 hours for my choucroute.”
The lion’s head dish at McLean’s House of Fortune stars giant pork—not the giant cat!—meatballs representing the king of the jungle’s massive dome.
Surrounding the dish are flowing leaves of bok choy, a Chinese cabbage, to symbolize the lion’s long, distinctive mane.
“It’s a dish that originates from the Huaiyang province of eastern China,” says Amy Choua, manager at House of Fortune. “It’s delicious because the bok choy is stewed in juices from the fatty pork meatballs.”
@AmberWPhoto Braised: quarter 1/2 head, bacon fat, fry edges, 350* oven for 2 hours, drizzle excellent balsamic vinegar.
@MrTimRegan Here’s an old family recipe: “Boil cabbage to pile of sludge. Throw away the resulting product. Go to restaurant. Buy dim sum.”
@penneysage Cook 12 oz bacon in pan. Remove bacon, leaving 1/4 c grease. Add & cook finely chopped cabbage til wilted. Top w/ crumbled bacon.
@clross1221 Saute onion, bacon, add cabbage, add cream, simmer, mix with cream cheese mashed potatoes, top with chives.
@mandaMiskabelle shred. cabbage,2T butter,2T soy sauce,1T sugar, 2t sriracha,1t minced garlic. Saute garlic/butter,add remaining, mix, cook 5 min!
“We’re growing two varieties of cabbage this season,” says Sara Guerre, who with her husband Chris, run Vienna’s Maple Avenue Market. The two also own a farm in Great Falls.
“With higher levels of vitamin A and C, the Red Acre cabbage produces a rich reddish-purple head that adds great color to any cabbage dish,” Guerre says. “It’s great to ferment into kraut and slaw.”
The second breed is one “with a milder, sweeter flavor,” says Guerre. “The Savoy Perfection produces beautiful heads of crisp, white hearts and deeply crinkled green leaves that are as eye catching as they are tasty.”
“Cabbage is a very versatile nutrient-rich vegetable,” says celebrity nutritionist, Lisa DeFazio of Fitperez.com. “It’s high in fiber, low in calories, contains vitamin C and antioxidants that are very beneficial to your health.” To drop pounds fast, DeFazio offers a tip on how to consume less calories without needing to gobble greens for lunch and dinner.
“Make a low calorie soup with cabbage, tomato juice, celery and carrots,” says DeFazio, “If you drink a bowl before dinner, it will fill you up and help you eat less to lose weight faster.”
Salud strives for a movement, not just a store.
By Jennie Tai
Let’s get juiced!” cheers the bright-eyed wellness coach, wiggling a foot-long stalk of—of course—organic celery.
It’s the perfect time to hit snooze and sleep-in on this cold Saturday morning, but in Great Falls, a hand full of couples, mothers and health newcomers shuffle into the back room with a common objective: learning ways to enhance their well-being.
Joda Coolidge is just one of the health professionals invited to lead monthly workshops at Salud, The Healthy Pantry.
Customers gather around a table spread of leafy greens and bright fruits to learn how to recreate healthy cocktails at home: almond milk, cucumber apple juice and a mysterious jade-colored shooter called the green goddess.
“I feel like Salud is more of an experience,” explains owner Denise Rodriguez. “If somebody wants a really delicious meal, they can still come here,” but there’s also more.
Promoting healthy choices with products and workshops, Salud is unique to the Great Falls community and mirrors a similar concept to that of wine bars—offering the best of heavily researched products, and featuring monthly educational classes (or tastings) to showcase them.
Still working as a real estate agent, Rodriguez, 41, is determined to enlighten the Northern Virginia community with a simplified bunker of organic products, local produce and prepared sandwiches and salads, from Nourish Market in McLean.
“We’re kind of like the 7-11 of Whole Foods,” Rodriguez laughs.
Read the rest of this entry »
Read the rest of this entry »