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Scattered Sundays

Hey, guess what? Turns out if you feed chickens leftover purple cabbage, they make BLUE poops all over the yard.

Thanks for coming to my Ted Talk on “OMG, WTF chickens”. Oh, and don’t let anyone tell you that giving them some cocoa powder means they will lay chocolate eggs. Lies.

a woman in sunglasses with a bandaid on her arm

Can’t wait to start licking doorknobs again and living my best 5g life.

Yahoo, I got my first vaccine on Thursday! Our state opened up eligibility to anyone 16 or older on the 15th. I had found some appointments at the next town over, and my sister-in-law and I were planning to go.

Then, the health department asked our church to host a clinic on Thursday and that was so much closer and much more convenient. My sister-in-law kept her appointment at the other place, but I ended up going to my church. And I invited a few friends along too. Jab party!

One of my friends had been on the fence about getting the shot. But I sent her the links anytime I found a clinic. I never pushed, and always just mentioned “if you’re looking for shot slots, I found some”. She ended up coming and told me she was only there because I kept sending links. #gentlenaggingwins

I got to my church early due to preschool drop-off, and since there was no line, I just went in before my scheduled time. I breezed right in, got my shot, and then sat in the sanctuary in plastic chairs spaced 6 feet apart with about 30 other people.

You know what made me bummed? Everyone was sitting there silently on their phones. I wanted to cheer and whoop and celebrate this incredible day. Instead, I settled for seeing our church business administrator and yelling “who-hoo, it’s vaccine day” while pumping my fists high into the air.

After my 15 minutes were up, I left and saw the line wrapping around the building. What a freaking awesome thing to see. I found out later they administered 600 shots that day. All the feels. I’m thankful for all the scientists who got us to this point, and the public health workers who do the Lord’s work on budgets that get slashed every single year.

I can’t wait to start licking all the doorknobs again soon. Ha! Kidding. But maybe some hugs. Ok, LOTS of hugs.

My arm started hurting within three hours, despite going on a four-mile walk and swinging my arms like an Olympic speed walker. I always have super sore arm syndrome after my annual flu shot, so I was expecting this. It’s better than the alternative, so I’ll take a sore arm any damn day.

a boy using a grabber to try to reach a balloon

Bennett had his first day of faux-kinder on Monday. He said everyone was nice, he liked his teacher, the work was fun, not having a group snack was weird, and “nobody fought or caused problems”. I had to stifle a laugh since he is the #1 creator of drama at home.

They are allowed to bring extra snacks from home and can get them whenever they’d like. This is Montessori afterall – child-led learning and all that business. In the preschool program, they had a group snack, which we paid for. It was a decent way for Bennett to try new foods and it is through group snack that we discovered that kid LOVES seaweed.

He loved that kindergarten seemed to have extra recess time, but I’m wondering if that just because the weather was SO great this week. I’m guessing the teachers let the kids play a little longer to soak up all the delicious vitamin D.

The extra 30 minutes of school were great for me, but he was exhausted that evening. It was like a “whining” switch flipped around 6:45 and he just lost his marbles. He was out like a trout in minutes once we read books at our normal time of 7:30.

Troy works 24-hour shifts, so 8-10 times a month, I handle bedtime all by myself. The nights he IS home, bedtime takes 10-20 minutes longer. Every.Single.Night. I keep telling him that the common denominator for a long bedtime is HIM.

This week, I started sending him photos of me snuggling with a passed-out Bennett by 7:50 pm. I figured he needed photographic evidence that he is the destroyer of bedtime.

3 photos of a mom snuggling with her kid

And it’s not even like we have bedtime battles with Bennett. Bedtime is a breeze because I refuse to let crappy behavior stand between me and 60 minutes of watching what I want on the couch. I do not miss the days of having to rock kids to sleep, sleep training, etc. I really dig bigger kids. 

But Troy is the fun parent and somehow that translates to Bennett going to bed later than is good for anyone. Troy is also a giant sucker and will tell Bennett he can color in bed. This child LOVES to color and will stay up too late creating. Not on my watch! Create on your own time pal, I’m going to watch The Office.

a 5 year old boy in a sun hat holding a monster truck

Troy was home on Tuesday, and by the afternoon we decided to throw in the towel and call it a failed day. The boys would not stop fighting, everyone was grouchy, and nothing was actually getting done. No one was being the best versions of themselves.

I suggested we each take a kid, go to a different park, and then let each kid pick a place to get ice cream. Natural pairings in our house are Troy and Bennett and me with Jack. As we got in the car, Jack said “it will be so nice to not have to wait for those two to catch up while we’re out walking”. Yep, that’s my kid!

Jack picked the park I hoped he would because the walking trails are so nice and they have real bathrooms with soap and water and actual toilets. We hit the trails and I was then “talked at” about video games for 30 minutes.

a woman and her son in the woods

We headed to an ice cream place, and as we were sitting in the lovely sunshine, Troy and Bennett rolled up. I guess they had the same idea, and both boys were pretty happy to see each other again. It wasn’t a very productive workday for me, but without the separation, we were all heading into the evening broken and cranky.

Speaking of being cranky, I finished our taxes. Ha, I kid. I mean, I don’t love doing taxes, but they need to be done. Being self-employed means it is a nightmare to track all my expenses and income (I have 3 main sources of income and 4-5 sub-sources), so I am always happy to have it behind me.

After staring at our unadorned walls for months, Troy finally tackled installing the trim this week. It’s been hanging over his head, but in a move that is not remotely normal for me, I just kept my mouth shut about it. The kitchen was functional and I could use it and that is what mattered.

Once the trim/baseboards are in, I believe he is going to fill the gap between the wood floors and the new tile in the kitchen. He already found the transitions we need, but the real battle will be in matching the stain to the wood floors.

We have had French doors upstairs for over eight years. We love them for airflow in summer and they’re so much more efficient than the horrible aluminum-framed single-paned sliders we used to have.

Those old sliders were the worst. I can distinctly remember one night in summer when Jack was little, looking at our thermostat and seeing it was 90 degrees F in our house at 8 pm. Blech!

The French doors keep things cooler upstairs by allowing the breeze to roll in off the water and right into our house. But the downside is the flies. Oh, the flies. There are always big, gross flies in our house during the summer.

A few years back we tried one of those screen sheets (I can’t think of a better way to explain them) that you velcro to the frame of the doors. They only lasted two days before I ripped them off because they annoyed me so badly.

They were a PITA for going in and out of the doors, and I thought they did not look great on our doors. And thus, we’ve been living with flies since then.

I somehow stumbled on some external French door screens online and thought it was awesome that there was a Canadian company that made them. Keeping it local to the West Coast, eh.

Last week, we had Screenman install Mirage screens on our French doors and we love them so much. We paid full price for these (other than the coupon that was on the website) and this is not remotely sponsored in any way. But I’m now telling everyone I know with French doors that you don’t have to deal with bugs anymore.

They came out to the house, took some measurements, and then built the screens in their truck in our driveway. They installed them the same day and gave us a little tutorial. Well, they gave Troy a tutorial; I was out walking. I would say the whole process took about 4-5 hours for two doors, including the install.

screen doors behind a table

The day they were installed, it was sunny but only about 50 degrees. Troy was so enamored with them that he had all the doors wide open, while I sat at my desk with a heating pad on my lap trying not to shiver. They are pretty cool, but I tend to save them for warm days…

The super-helpful lady with Screenman who answered so many of my questions on the phone while investigating these did say they’re not pet-proof. But if they can survive a house of boys, I think they’re pretty hardy. I guess that makes me hardy too then, right?

running shoes near a banana

Housekeeping

Jack went back to on-campus school twice a week back in February. We decided to give him one of our old phones for emergencies.

Even though we have lots of filters on the phone and have access to his account/cloud, we are in uncharted territory here. We never had cell phones as tweens/teens and honestly weren’t sure what the protocols should be.

A friend recommended Bark and we signed up right away. Bark is a proactive app that can block and monitor sites and other apps after parental filters are set.

We’re big fans and I think it’s a great service for parents. Bark offers a 7-day free trial if you’d like to try it out. Click here to try bark for free.

What I’m Listening To This Week

A few weeks ago I recommended the podcast Your Own Backyard. Well, there is an update on the case they covered and law enforcement attributes the podcast to the renewed interest. Arrests have been made and the family may soon get long-awaited answers.

For a new podcast, check out Tulsa’s Buried Truth. It’s about the race massacre in Greenwood, OK (then known as Black Wall Street) that happened 100 years ago. I’ve heard about this for years, but I do know it’s not a commonly taught historical event. It’s an incredibly well-done podcast and it’s a very hard topic but a necessary listen.

Reader Spotlight of the Week

Lisa left this five-star review on our Crispy Baked Potatoes {Pin this recipe}:

I have been meaning to try this method and finally remembered to buy some large potatoes.  My husband LOVES potatoes but is very picky about how they’re cooked.  He said this recipe is “spot on” (he’s British)!  Even my middle daughter who does not love potatoes liked these!  They were a perfect side for chili!

Healthy baked potatoes on a plate topped with cheese

On Sustainable Cooks This Week

Chicken Salad With Dill – This Chicken Salad With Dill is a delicious and healthier twist on the classic chicken salad recipe. Mix up a batch of this no mayo chicken salad for a tasty sandwich, or put it in ripe avocado halves for a gluten-free option. {Pin this recipe}

Dill chicken salad on a crossiant on a wooden board

Homemade Mint Extract – Learn how easy and affordable it is to make your own Homemade Peppermint Extract! This homemade mint extract recipe makes wonderful gifts. If you have a pressure cooker, I’ll even teach you to make it in the Instant Pot. {Pin this recipe}

A bottle of homemade peppermint extract with mint and lavender on a wooden board

Canning Supplies List – This complete Canning Supplies and Preserving Equipment List will help you get you started off on the right foot with home canning. This guide will walk you through the essential canning supplies, tools, and products needed to get started. {Pin this list}

canning jars of different sizes on a wooden board

Garlic Hummus – Learn how to make the best homemade Garlic Hummus Recipe ever! An easy and healthy vegan and gluten-free snack, garlic hummus is so addicting! {Pin this recipe}

a bowl of hummus surrounded by a rainbow array of veggies

The Five Most Popular Posts This Week

  1. Air Fryer Egg Rolls – vegan/vegetarian as written, but you can make your version to your tastes.  {Pin this recipe}
  2. Air Fryer Pizza Rolls – the childhood favorite with none of the burns on the roof of your mouth.  {Pin this recipe}
  3. Air Fryer Potatoes – skip using the oven and make these crispy taters in the air fryer.  {Pin this recipe}
  4. How to Freeze Spinach – here comes gardening season!  {Pin this tutorial}
  5. Instant Pot Garlic Butter Rice – we always have some of this in our freezer. SO GOOD! {Pin this recipe}

Meal Plan

Monday:: Pasta with Freezer Spaghetti Sauce and a big salad.

Tuesday:: Takeout to support a local small business.

Wednesday:: A new recipe I’m trying with our Whole Wheat Pizza Dough as the base. Everyone in the house is excited about this! Garlic Butter Green Beans on the side.

Thursday:: Grilled chicken, asparagus, and garlic bread.

Friday:: Popcorn, leftovers, and movie night.

Saturday:: Takeout to support a local small business.

Sunday:: TBD

 

What are you having this week?

 

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8 comments on “Scattered Sundays”

  1. Yay!!!  
    Dude, I totally ugly cried when I took my 84yo parents to get their vaccines in January! Being a frontline worker, I got mine in December.  The poor lady registering us for the follow up shots thought I was having a reaction…. but through my sobs I managed to let her know that they were truly happy tears. My parents hadn’t seen their grandchildren and greats, including their newborn great that arrived the day COVID hit and they were really showing signs of mental deterioration. To see all of these grandparents being vaccinated was overwhelming!  

  2. Cell phone reception improves hahahahaha

  3. I need to remember Bark in a few months when we get our oldest a phone for her birthday. The plan is to be in person school full time next year. The school is close enough to my parents and the library for her to walk over after school plus after school activities. Traffic is a nightmare and her brother will be in preK if he stops crapping in his pants so having her walk to his school for pick up will be much easier