The Week Behind: How many Candles?

Saturday:  Before I forget to share this one more time...I went dumpster diving the other day when I took off trash.  Typically people put good useable items down next to the dumpster but this item was in the top part of a full dumpster so I lifted it out: one of those plastic toddler slides.  This one is about three feet tall, so suitable for a child Isaac's age and probably a bit small for someone as long legged as Taylor or Josh but I'll bet they'll try it out, too.  However, I figure with Millie and Caleb coming along here  we'll get a few years use out of it.  It's faded but not broken in any manner.  

I kept Caleb this morning while Katie went to get Taylor.  There's a birthday party this afternoon for Taylor.  Her 'real' birthday is later this coming week but it's just the first of many birthdays for us.  We have a total of 8 in our family, 6 of which fall in June.

Later note:  Katie bought the frozen burgers from Aldi to grill out today and they were really tasty.  Not at all greasy nor grainy in texture and some pre-frozen burgers tend to be.  I'll likely pick up some of those next time I'm in store now that I know they are a good quality.  I find that hamburger patties are a quick and easy lunch or main dish entree and when I can buy big bulk amounts of beef, I used to make my own to keep on hand.

Sunday:  Another day another attempt to rest.  Well it's not the day for resting.  There's plenty to do when you've skipped a full day of chores twice  already and so, I scrambled about today and got a few things done.

Stripped bed and bath.  I washed these items and hung on the line to dry.  Didn't take long with the heat today.

I walked out to the compost heap to dump the contents of my container.   I looked over that side flower bed once more and I am so disappointed that six packets of seeds apparently germinated two or three flowers each.  I'll get some more for sure and replant in the blank spots which are quite large.  Try try again until at last you succeed!

I went into the shed and pulled wreaths more suited to summer for the doors.  The front door is sporting a pretty wreath covered in lilacs and apple blossoms which I realize are more spring and less summer but it shall do for now.  The back door got the old green gingham check with gerbera daisies on it.  I  don't know about your area, but that too is a spring flower...Get the impression I don't have summer wreaths?  I don't.    I'd love to have something fresh and new and likely will work something out as soon as I can breathe in between things.

Washed a full load of dishes and then made a bigger than usual Sunday lunch.  

Taylor came in and she must have Gramma's fried chicken for Sunday lunch.  Today she ate two pieces.   While it's not something we used to do each Sunday, she likes the 'always' part of it.  John and I agreed after today that we'll buy chicken  during our big grocery shop since we can pick up cold chicken at the deli and we'll freeze and reheat on the Sundays she comes by here on her way home. For today,   I took the frozen chicken  out last night and set it in the fridge to thaw.  This morning I put paper towel in the bottom of a foil lined pan, placed the chicken on it and reheated  at 300F in the oven until I could smell it then cut the heat to WARM setting .  It worked out great and didn't dry out the chicken at all.

Unloaded then reloaded the dishwasher with lunch dishes.  Brought in clothes off line and folded them up.  I've noted this before: when I fold the laundry and put it in our room, I can walk to the door and immediately smell that awesome fresh aroma of line dried clothing.  It really is a lovely scent and I just wish I could have that scent in the house every single day.  Mind you all, that would mean washing and drying clothes every single day and we're well beyond the need to do laundry daily, thank goodness!

Cut up some ripe bananas and put in the freezer for future use.  I've noted that lately our trick with the plastic bag isn't working as well at keeping the bananas from all ripening at once.  I think it's because they aren't getting as air tight a closure.  I prefer the sort of bags with a zippered slide or even to put into a bag with a twist tie.  I've only had the zip top type lately and they never seem to quite match up when some people try to reclose them...Not pointing fingers but if he's nearby I'll say "hmmm" "Hmmmm".     I'm going to figure this one out because this trick worked really well for us for over two years now.

Also cut up all the oranges and then peeled them and put those sections in the freezer.  I'm trying hard to stay atop our foodstuffs so that we waste nothing.  It isn't just budget that concerns me but this recent bout of scarce items on shelves has made me more determined than ever to avoid waste.  

One area I'm noting we need to think more about is our lunch.  I don't buy luncheon meats but I also don't have readily available items on hand to use for lunches, either.  I want to have a few items on hand that we might use for a quick lunch, though often I will take time to cook something like canned beans and rice.  However, to take time each week to make up chicken salad, pimento cheese, etc. would be so helpful to me.  I have a tendency to wait until John asks "Anything for lunch, or am I on my own?" before I think it out.  Best get back to planning this out each week as well...and breakfasts, too!

This week I plan to make some of Mandy's Sausage Muffins and to cook some turkey bacon ahead that we can use for sandwiches, salads or for breakfasts.  I'd like to make some pancakes one morning this week and some blueberry muffins.  That should easily see us through the week with boiled eggs (I'll do extra for egg salad) for breakfasts.    For lunches I'll do BLTs, Egg Salad and thaw that leftover sloppy joe mixture and make pimento cheese spread.

Monday:  Planted potatoes this morning.  I need to puncture the bottom of the bag I used so it will drain, but I dumped shredded paper in the bottom, topped with soil then mixed it about and last I slipped in several potato slips that I'd salvaged from our potatoes that had sprouted eyes.  We'll see how well they do.  No loss if they don't do anything and what a bonus if they take off!   The bag I used was a woven plastic mesh type dog food bag.   I also slipped a few pieces of potatoes with eyes into a pot of soil.

I made blueberry pancakes this morning for breakfast and we have enough for another morning this week.  No not the blueberry muffins I had planned but we'll get the same mileage from these.  And boy were they good!

I cooked up sausage so I can make Mandy's Sausage and Egg muffin recipe, but I need to find the recipe.  I think it's in my current homemaking book.  Found it...I linked it in Sunday's section.

For some reason this morning, I got caught up in the desire to clean and refresh the house.  Well one plan didn't work out at all, as the item I wanted to use was too big, so I moved the big Staghorn fern in the blue and white planter onto the seating area of the tub and put a picture on the ledge behind it.  It's an old picture I got at a thrift store and I just love the thing.  The colors are well suited to the bathroom and it's awfully pretty behind that blue and white planter and green live plant.  

Anyway, results of puttering was that I cleaned bathroom a little more deeply than usual, which bled over into dusting the bedroom and cleaning blinds and ceiling fan and then vacuuming our bedroom and on to the living room to do the same.

It wasn't in my plans to do any of this really aside from a swish and wipe down in the bathroom.  I'd asked John to vacuum but he'd gone out to mow, and I figured he'd be done in by the time he finished and then cleaned the mower and showered.   It takes him about 3 1/2 hours to do the mowing and  did  edging about flower beds and patio and house.  Well I went on and dusted living room, cleaned ceiling fan and blinds there, before vacuuming that room in it's entirety (dining area and front entry and little hallway).  

The whole time I was cleaning, I kept thinking about making a goal of doing four things I could do each week to make me happier with my home.  Well cleaning those blinds and ceiling fans was one of those things that require a little extra effort but no money and no long term time investment.   Ditto with planting those potatoes.  It's something I've wanted to do for the longest and here at last I've gotten it done!

 I went outside afterwards and sat on the back porch to wait on John to finish washing the mower and have a glass of iced water with me.  While he worked, I thought and thought.  I looked about that back porch and saw all sorts of little jobs I might do from painting flower pots and tables to scrubbing the railings down and planning to buy paint for the decking which is looking pretty well scratched up from the dogs nails.  The cafe table and all the chairs could use paint, but I'll need to sand and then buy paint to do those things.  I want a cafe table or additional seating for the front porch and plants that are in flower and more flower seeds and to get all those bulbs and things planted and....SIGH!   Well there's all sorts of things I might do and in varying degrees of labor intensity and financial costs.

So while I was making lunch I thought it out some more then sat down after lunch with a sheet of paper and made up a list of six jobs I could do that would make me feel happier if they were done.  Some involved money being spent and I just need to see where I am before I start spending.  Some just require my taking time to do them, like cleaning and repainting porch rails.  I have the paint and the cleaning items.  I decided that I could do some jobs in increments.  I don't have to do it all at one go.  Those porches can be broken up into sections and I'll wash and paint and wash and paint and wash and paint until it's all done.

But a few jobs can be done NOW without a load of labor, like spray painting old flower pots so that they look fresh and new and prettier than they do at the moment.  I've lots of leftover spray paint (and some cans of paint and a brush for others).  I can start to make the front porch look fresh by moving some of the plants I have indoors outside. I typically put the cactus and orchids outdoors this time of year.    It doesn't take long to fill up the ironing board with plants when I bring those things outdoors!

Anyway, it's an idea that I think I will work with.  Each week I'll try to do four things to improve my home in some  way, whether it's to clean an area or refresh it, etc.  I've got two done already this week....Just two more to go!

I can't recall the last time John was home for a Memorial Day.  It's also our 26th anniversary.  So I decided to grill.  I had a single New York Strip steak in the freezer which was big enough for us to share.  I also thawed some chicken breasts and cut those in half so they weren't so thick.  I then had six  fillets, grilled those and we ate the two smallest with our half piece of steak.  

I made blue cheese dressing from scratch.  I asked myself as I ate my salad tonight why on earth I am buying bottled blue cheese dressing at $4 a 12 ounce bottle ($3.50 if I can find it on sale) when I can make a really good one myself?  What's more I can make the quantity I want.  John really loves blue cheese but Aldi doesn't have a good  bottled one.   I'm going back to making my own.  I can buy blue cheese and keep it in the freezer (Feta freezes well, too).   It's one less excuse to go into Publix and one more good food I can make myself.

I am working on making more and more of the items I'd typically buy.  Why?  It's more work and honestly the last thing I need at the moment is more work.  I  have plenty of claims on my time already.  But here's the deal: when I make something from scratch it almost always tastes better, costs a heap less and I have some control over what I use to make it.  Is it worth it every time?  No.

Are you surprised I said that?   Brownie mix is almost always cheaper than making my own homemade.  My homemade ones are good but they cost  a good bit of money.  I've found a brownie mix recipe I want to try which will give me the ability to know exactly what all the ingredients in that mix are.  BUT, I also know I can buy a very good brownie mix from Aldi...and while it might contain some of those unpronounceable things, we only eat brownies once in a while anyway.  I'm not eating them on a daily or weekly or even monthly basis.  I'll try the homemade brownie mix recipe and I'll judge the cost compared to using the boxed mix and see how it goes. 

Some items take more time than I have to prepare them.  Some items just don't have that perfect balance of added flavor, and net me budget-wise or time-wise savings to make it worthwhile.  But where it is worthwhile I will definitely take time to make it and happily enjoy the savings it nets me.  In a different season of life I might well do more but for now, I'll pick and choose.   As for the blue cheese dressing,  it took about four minutes to gather ingredients and mix up.  The flavor is superior.  All in all, my pint of dressing cost me about $2.50 to make, since I used a full 4 ounces of blue cheese,  maybe a wee bit more, which is a good savings over sale prices at any store.  I can decrease blue cheese without noticeable difference and make it for even less.   Done.  I'll make my own and happily do so.

Tuesday:  I knew I'd need to leave home about the time I'd generally start supper tonight so last night I took a frozen mac and cheese from the freezer to thaw in the fridge overnight.  I put it in the oven on a lower setting when I left home to pick up Caleb, along with a pan full of vegetables to roast.  I usually roast those at a higher temperature but knew that John would be lost as to what to do with them, lol, so low roasting worked fine.  It's warming up though and I won't be doing too many more oven meals in the evenings.

We had a different sort of day.  I made those sausage egg muffins and John raved over them.  I like them because really all you need is fruit, either juice or a serving, to make a complete meal.  They've plenty of protein to balance the carbs and keep blood sugars stable.

I sat down to work on my pre-algebra.  Not going to tell a story here.  I took a week off and when I sat down one evening to look over the lesson I honestly could say I understand more Mandarin than I knew about algebra that evening.  I came back to it later and it was clearer to me and I did that lesson and have worked steadily at it each day since.  While I was doing that John went out to work on a mower that Sam said wouldn't run.  We were on a timer because we'd planned to celebrate our anniversary today.  

Bess and the boys walked over.  She brought me a pink grapefruit from a produce box they get.  I gave her a bag of vegetable and bread scraps for the chickens to eat.   I got to visit with the boys a few minutes and will see Josh in the morning for school.  Next Wednesday afternoon I'm going to have Isaac over to visit.  I've missed that boy and he's been here twice and had to go right back home again which breaks his heart.  You know it breaks mine, too, to see him cry.  Fortunately I have a bag of Giant Marshmallows I bought at Aldi and the boys are delighted with them and generally crying stops.

John had success in getting out the stripped bolt and visited with the boys for a little bit. I had the pleasure of seeing Josh and Isaac try out the slide.  I'm so glad I brought it home!  They walked home together.  

Then we got ourselves ready to go.

I was anxious this morning, I think due to barometric variances since we kept having little showers all day long.  I got downright nervous and antsy on our ride over.  A tractor with very wide mowing blades  took up 1 3/4 lanes of the busy highway and there were semi-trucks in front of us as well as behind.  I can say the one behind us didn't follow to close but every now and then I'd hear him jake breaking to slow down still more and I kept checking the rearview mirror as he got closer and closer.  Ugh!  I expect there was a whole slew of nervous drivers before we were done as this poor tractor driver had to cross a narrow bridge, avoid many post boxes and road signs and had to come to a dead halt if there was oncoming traffic.  I could have cheered with relief when he turned onto a country road some 5 miles from where we started following him.

My usual hair salon was not open for business today.  Apparently they are working just three days a week and this wasn't one of them. I had two other options.  One I felt reasonably sure I might find.  The other I knew where it might be but wasn't at all sure.  We opted for the sure thing. I made my appointment and arrived at the destination.  The sign said, Sign clipboard and have a seat...Well there was no clipboard.  There were people inside the business and I opened the door only to have ten people turn and tell me "Close the door!"  I closed the door! lol  Eventually a young man came out with a clipboard and a thermometer and recorded my temperature then said "Please come in."  Chairs were six feet apart in the waiting area.

Once in all the staff were wearing masks and gloves.  I noted no one changed gloves between customers.  None of the customers had  on masks though.  It is hard to cut hair when a mask is tucked about the ears, I guess.  I was told to sanitize my hands.  A little boy dashed in front of me and pumped the top of the bottle and then I went right behind him and wondered wasn't the bottle now contaminated?  Never mind, I sanitized as told to do.  

The young lady called me to her station.  I noted that the cape she put over my clothes was the very same one she'd just taken off her last customer...I have a very real feeling that people truly have NO idea how to keep anyone safe.   Not that I'm worried about it really.  I'm not.  But little details are sort of my forte and they were missing just loads of little details.  I felt a bit like I felt when the local chapter of the  American Heart Association auctioned off Smoked Pork Butts...Let's examine this a minute and figure out why it mightn't be quite the good cause you think it is...

The stylist that did my hair was very pleasant and we chatted about her two month hiatus from work.  She told me she'd really enjoyed it since she's been working since she was 18.  She's old enough to have truly grown children for all that she looked young (masks can do that for you, lol).  Curious I asked a personal question, "Did your employer pay you for your time out?"  "Yes, " she said.  "But I worry about other people who didn't get that pay..."  That led us to discuss the self-employed, and the way other people spend a bit crazily when they got the stimulus and the dire consequences many will face now, much less in the autumn and winter if another shut down occurs.  She told me as she finished my cut, "You know...what we're talking about is what everyone worries about.  I don't think people are nearly as worried about the virus itself as the devastation to people's personal lives."   

John suggested we go to our favorite little hideaway restaurant to have lunch.  I was happy to go there.  They are still serving every other table only and have sanitizing stations in between so if anyone feels unsure they can wipe things down themselves.   

We've only ever had one meal there that disappointed and it was mine.  It didn't fail us today, though John was a bit surprised they had no coffee.  When the waitress explained the machine had broken he was fine with that.  The food was delicious.  We enjoyed our meal and the conversation we had while eating.

We went to the local Kroger where I did a quick walk through the bakery. I picked up some Eclairs for John.  He likes them a lot and I buy them about once a year.  It occurred to me that once long ago, I made cream puffs and I reckon I could manage Eclairs for him.  I went on through to the meat department, more out of curiosity than anything.  I noted signs stating customers were limited to two packages of chicken and two packages of beef, 'due to shortages' but there was a good supply of both in the counters.  Is that because of the limits or because supplies aren't as low as they suppose?   I found a 1 pound package of marked down organic ground turkey for $2.39.  Grabbed it up.  Clearance priced meat is a good thing in my opinion.

On to my real purpose which was to buy butter at $1.99 a pound, with no limits on that.  I'd told John that I haven't seen it at that price in ages.   I don't know if this will be part of a new normal or a fluke, so I got six pounds.  I've room in the freezer and butter is a good thing to have on hand.

We headed home to have coffee.  We had an Eclair with our coffee.

Called Mama to set up a visit for her birthday...I'll see her come Friday.

Picked up Caleb from nursery.  He appeared rather happy overall which I was glad of.  John was probably the most anxious of anyone as he told me three or four times we should 'just go check on him'.  I told him I wouldn't go up there for the world and have him see us then leave him behind.  We were just going to have to trust the care givers. I reminded him that Katie went to school with and much admired one of the heads of the infant department.   I guess Katie was a wee bit anxious too, because she called me to make sure I'd gotten him.   I'll leave a wee bit earlier tomorrow.  I discovered today that if you have three miles and one block to drive into town and a car ahead of you  is going 40mph on the highway in front of you and puts on brakes every time a car comes towards them which was often enough to prevent my passing,  then it will take roughly 15 minutes to drive that 3 miles.  Just sayin'.

Wee boy seemed fine, sleepy but not hungry, not wet and certainly not neglected though he did keep his eyes hard upon Daddy or me the while I was at his house.  Last Friday when I was keeping him he was fine, too, but by afternoon he was constantly craning his neck to look to see if Katie was in the kitchen.  I know he'll get used to this season in his life and will thrive.  We will all get used to this season.

Supper wasn't quite ready when I got back home but it sure did smell good anyway.  I turned up the heat on the oven a bit.  I've a plan for dinner tomorrow night that won't necessitate doing much.

Wednesday:  Katie woke me at 6:30 this morning with a text.  She'd done a facetime call with Taylor to tell her happy birthday and Taylor was far less excited about it than Katie and Daddy were, lol.  Seems she wakes up slowly and doesn't care for conversations that early.  Sort of like myself and Katie!

I stayed abed a few minutes longer then got up and got busy puttering around putting breakfast items out.  John slept a wee bit later.  It's nice to get that first cup of coffee when the house is all quiet about you.  Even if the silly cat does send "Feed Me" rays from her eyes through the window...She has an instinct for when I get up and is always on that porch railing when I open the blinds each morning.

John and I ate breakfast together this morning.  Some mornings we do and others we don't.  I was more awake than usual and really we do like to eat at our table most meals.

I puttered around clearing up the kitchen and making the bed, while John did a rather large load of clothes.  He hung the bulk of that load to dry.  He put pants outdoors and I noted when I went out to feed pets that it was misting rain.  I wondered if those things stood any chance at all of getting dry today.

Josh came in ready to do school work.  He knocked out his work in no time today.  While I'm letting him pick and choose which order he does in pages, I am trying to press the 'follow the directions'.  However, when you've three hours and pages involve LOTS of coloring we sometimes curb the coloring in favor of getting more work done.  I'd noted that his last packet seems to focus heavily on simple reading so we did far more of that than math today.  He tickled me as he said "I don't like to read..."  but then he turned right around and picked up a page and read the instructions through and followed them.  I said "Josh...How do you know that's what you're supposed to do?"  He looked at me and frowned.  "Who told you what to do?"  He pointed to the paper and said "Right here.  It says color the butterfly is pink and purple..."  "Yep it does.  You know you read that.  You just didn't think about whether or not it was hard, you just did it.  You can read!"  He looked surprised and then smiled a huge smile.   

John got a call asking him to come into work tomorrow.  "Do you have to do anything tomorrow?  I'll need the car."  "Well yes, I've got to pick up Caleb but I can ride down with you and then will run down to pick you up after I get him."  It was inevitable we'd be tested right away wasn't it?  John rather likes the idea of my riding down with him to work.  He did say, "Well that runs into our supper time tomorrow night.  Just don't make anything.  I'll buy us a pizza."   Good enough.

I made Slaw dogs for lunch today using up the slaw left from Sunday's meal.

I started my fresh inventory.  I did my last one in May.  I started with the big freezer and noted that I'd done a pretty good job of clearing out a lot of 'saved' items that tend to become malingerers in our freezer.  They are saved to be useful but we just don't need the quantities in which I save them.  It uses up needed space.  This inventory there weren't any of those items.  In three months I've accumulated a few pre-baked items, a few casseroles to thaw and cook, but there's a lot less space fillers per se.

I was surprised to find I had two full gallons of milk .  I'd stored one in the big freezer and one in the fridge freezer.

Well, time to go get supper things together, put on a wee bit of makeup and get ready to make that little trek into town to get Caleb.   I plan to make BBQ Chicken (cooked Monday), corn on the cob and a salad for our supper tonight.  It will take just moments to cook that corn and reheat the chicken.   I'll double up on the salad so we have some to go with our pizza tomorrow night.

Thursday:  I was up at 5:30am this morning and went into the kitchen where it was pitch black inside and out. Ugh, lol.   Well by the time I'd made the bed, showered and dressed and reheated some of those sausage egg muffins for our breakfast and John had made me coffee (he's a good man!), it was light outdoors just that quick.  I'd hoped for a sunrise but the day only lightened up as we went.  

It's awfully pretty though to drive through woods and fields and to see what's changed since my trip down that way last month.  I saw deer grazing in a field, far off the roadway thank goodness and noted new houses going up and old houses that went down.   As we drove through that little town where we both lived 40 years ago, I noted that likely the folks I remembered living in houses we passed no longer lived there.  Most were elderly when I was in my 20's and here I am just past 60 now.  Goodness gracious!

One of John's co-worker's farms part time and grows food crops.  He brought in yellow summer squash to share and I got a bag.  I went in and shook that man's hand.  I told him, "I love squash almost as much as I love corn!"  To that John's boss/partner replied "Corn's coming in next week..."  I'd noted the farm stand where they sell the corn had a sign up as we went by saying they'd be selling in a few days.  Gracious!  Here it is end of May and peaches and strawberries and corn and squash are coming in and we haven't even hit 90F yet this year.

Two things: I usually set my orchids outdoors come this time of year but not until nights are consistently in the 70's...Well we haven't reached that moment yet this year!  In fact, when I looked ahead a week nights are expected to stay in the 60's range.   So I guess those plants will be babied indoors just a bit longer.

Second:  A mentioned I looked like I'd lost more weight...I don't think so, but when I got home I thought  "Well, one of us might be wrong..."   So I tried on those black jeans I struggled so to lose weight to get into.  Those black jeans don't lie.  They tell me I could lose five pounds to be comfortable and ten if I really wanted to say I'd lost any weight.  

The ride home was as lovely as the ride back.  My mind raced with all the things I want to do but I had to face some facts.  I have a list a mile long.  My right arm and upper back are feeling the strain of an 18 pound baby boy in a car seat carrier.   I need to dig ground in order to plant or I need to go buy soil and seeds and starter plants.   I am in no mood to spend money and my back's in no mood to go digging in the soil.  So I checked my to do list from last week and decided that pantry inventory was on the agenda after I'd picked up the house and fed the animals.  Also working up the ledger sheet for June (JUNE!) and doing my pre-Algebra work and cleaning up the guest room.   Well I got all that done, made bread and cooked half the squash to go into the freezer and had lunch and folded a load of clothes.

I had a really good lunch today of leftover beans and taters and Gramma's fried chicken (one small piece left the other day) and fresh summer squash which was so good.  John wanted me to choose a pizza with pineapple on it.  Well I took a shot and suggested we get a BBQ chicken pizza, like the one I meant to make for us and he said "Oh that sounds good!"  lol.   So I'll let him experiment on the pizzeria sort.  I put two Bbq chicken fillets into the freezer last night so I can make my own pizza another day when the evening isn't so crammed with things I must do.

I am thinking hard after my inventory.  I daresay should we need to do so we could go six weeks with the meats we have on hand just now.   And comparing January's inventory with May's I see that mostly I've held steady with what I had back then despite the shortages and outages we've come up against.  Also noted that some of what I didn't have in January, I still don't have in May.  These are little things that it would be nice to have on hand but apparently we live without them for the most part.  Things like maraschino cherries and chocolate chips and bamboo shoots and orange marmalade.   Not really necessities but things that just add that little extra something to a meal.   I'm going to try to stock on the necessities we're missing (only a few) but also work on those 'little extra' items that are just nice to have on hand with our June grocery funds.

I'm also feeling the urge to USE those items that seem to be perpetually on the list.   Remember my ordering all those Brazil nuts because John really does need the selenium they contain?  Yeah...I seldom touch them.  They're in the freezer but still.  It's taking up valuable real estate if I'm not using it.  I know that my old favorite cookbook has several recipes that call for Brazil nuts so I'm going to pull it out and look up a few things to attempt cooking.  Also Farro.  I only buy it to go into that one soup recipe but surely I could use it otherwise?  A friend shared  a Farro salad on her instagram yesterday and I think that might be rather refreshing for warmer days ahead.  And let us not forget all those dried beans.  I didn't have to buy ANY dried beans when all this scarcity hit the grocery.  Still, best start using those, too.

Friday:  Had I not been inserting jump breaks (that thing that allows you to see only a portion of a post on the home page of the blog) I wouldn't even have realized that I utterly failed to send this post out this week!  Glad I was doing maintenance, even if what I really really wanted to be doing was napping.

I want to share first about our pizza picnic.  After picking up Caleb from nursery on Thursday, I left him with his daddy and went off to Montezuma to order a pizza for mine and John's supper.  We had decided we were going to get 'something with pineapple' because neither of us had ever had a pizza with pineapple on it.  I don't know why we were feeling so adventurous, lol.

So I went to the local pizza place and ordered a Hawaiian Pizza without bacon.  The pizzeria was not open for dining in nor did they allow customers in at all but boy was it an efficiently run business!  I called in my order after I parked but I might have ordered from the young man who stopped at each car in the parking spaces in front of the site and asked what you'd like.  He also hand delivered items to each customer.  The only fault I had with the system was that I wanted to pay cash but unless you had exact change you had to call in and give your debit card info.  They then sent you a text with your receipt.  

It was pleasant and not at all hard to sit with the windows down to await my food.  I'd carried along my journal to jot down thoughts and also a book to read so I was well occupied.

I  picked John up at work and we drove through the little town where we both once lived when we we neighbors and not on speaking terms.  I was fascinated by a little vacant lot that was filled with lovely grass and food carts that were set up and people coming in and out.  John told me it was a Chamber of Commerce event.  We drove up to the old Junior High School which is now a combination Police Department, Event Center, City Park with picnic tables and had a lovely picnic supper.  I'm going to end the day here because the day beyond that got difficult for personal reasons which had a lot to do with a misunderstanding but it was a very pleasant start to the evening regardless of how it ended up!

Friday morning, I  was off to visit with Mama.  It was her 83rd birthday and I planned a day I hoped she'd enjoy which involved lunch out, a visit to her favorite Farmer's Market and the very first fresh peach ice cream of the season.  It went off rather nicely if I do say so, and Mama was well pleased with it all.

I ran into Walmart after leaving Mama's to try to find the packet of deep clearance discounted underwear that was nowhere in the store that I could, nor the batteries (unless one was wanting a D battery which were fully stocked) and something for supper.  That ended being Corn Dogs.  I'd bought melons and peaches at the farmstand and I felt it was a good enough supper for us after I went to pick up Caleb.  

More upsets and dramas all through out the day related to said misunderstanding, sigh.  By the end of the day I was DONE with the week and said as much in my prayers over our Shabat table.

So we'll leave it at that.  A week that had some accomplishment and some drama and angst and enough of the unusual to keep me busy busy.

How was your week?
(C) Terri Cheney

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