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Scattered Sundays

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It went from 93 on Sunday, to 65 on Monday. I went from sweating my face off, to wearing socks again in 24 hours. Wild man, wild.

It has been established that temps over 82F result in me being what doctors call “a total whiner-face”. My people (pasty white Norwegians) do not enjoy heat or humidity. If I could put a heat bubble over the garden and then just enjoy 75F temps, that would be my perfect summer.

In historic Seattle tradition, the 4th of July weather is looking like trash with the immediate next day having a total weather turnaround. It’s what we do.

My inlaws always host a giant 4th of July BBQ at their house. It hasn’t happened for the last few years due to the ‘rona. And this year, MIL has a family reunion in Oregon over the 4th.

My kiddos have been asking for a family 4th BBQ for years, so we decided to throw one together kind of at the last minute…well for me at least. Planning an event within only a week is totally not in my wheelhouse, but here we are.

We’re doing the typical BBQ fare – burgers (Troy’s famous recipe), hot dogs, and veggie burgers. Troy’s cousin is bringing fruit, Troy’s aunt is bringing her family-famous macaroni salad, and my Dad is making the street corn from Costco’s freezer section (seriously, go get it, it’s incredible!).

I’m making a green salad from our garden (it’s free so why not) and this coleslaw recipe but with mayo (barf) instead of Greek yogurt because Troy’s aunt is dairy-free. To keep things uber simple, I went partially homemade with dessert.

I bought the 3-pack of pound cake from Costco (they’re freaking delicious and only $8), and we’ll be topping it with some Frozen Strawberries in Syrup (that I froze in Souper Cubes because I am obsessed) topped with some homemade whipped cream.

To make sure we weren’t leaving Troy’s (dairy-free) aunt out of dessert, I bought a (single) Lenny and Larry Snickerdoodle cookie from our grocery store to use as the base of her strawberry “shortcake”.

The old version of me would have made a single dairy-free biscuit. The trying to stay sane over the summer version of me is like “buy the cookie”. The world will keep on turning if you buy a cookie. FYI.

a kid in an eye exam chair with a mask
Ever seen an old-timey bank robber at the eye doc?

Jack, Bennett, and I all had eye exams this week. Neither boy needs glasses…yet. Given that both Troy and I wear corrective lenses does not bode well for these children. As of now, their vision is fantastic and we’ll celebrate that.

Troy has made fun of me for years for having “vampire eyes”, AKA I have to wear sunglasses even on the cloudiest days. I’ve never been interested in prescription sunglasses, but have been thinking about exploring getting “professional” sunglasses for years.

The store-bought “over-the-counter” sunglasses that I wear are never dark enough for me. I figured that getting them from the eye doctor would mean not only would they be properly polarized but super dark.

I picked out a fun pair after my appointment but even the standard lenses were not dark enough for me. They said they could make them darker and that was pretty exciting news.

However, when all was said and done, these sunglasses that didn’t even have a prescription in them would have been $545. OMG, NO. And because they didn’t have a prescription and I’m not eligible for eyewear benefits until January 2023, it would have been 100% out of pocket. Hard, hard pass.

Jack and I had to hit up Costco the next day after his orthodontist appointment, and I basically found the exact same pair but with darker standard lenses for $74.99. Sold. Done and dusted.

I bought them and then left the warehouse and put on the sunglasses. Somehow these glasses made my eyes MORE sensitive to the sunlight. I started laughing because I’m 100% ridiculous at this point.

I went back in and then had to wait in line to return them and get new ones. I asked if I could leave my stuff there as collateral and take four new pairs outside to see how my geriatric millennial eyes would react to them.

They kindly let me leave my Cotton Candy Grapes behind (everyone would come back for those!) and run out the door like a baby mole rat coming out of the burrow for the first time.

I ended up with a pair that I don’t love love but they work better than what I have. They have those little nose clip things like real glasses, which means I can’t just shove them up on the top of my head when I walk into Target because they get stuck in my hair (first-world problems). But they’re fine and protect my newborn eyes.

a woman in a car wear sunglasses
Yes, I’m sweaty as a mo-fo but look, no make up and my skin isn’t AWFUL!

(Fingers crossed) in just a few days, I’m going to be chilling with Katie and her lovely family up in Canada. Due to ‘rona and travel restrictions, she hasn’t been back in Canada since January 2020. She’s not on the plane yet so I’m not going to jinx anything. I just hope this trip actually gets to happen.

Troy has a shift during the trip, so I am taking the boys solo. It will be fine for me and wonderful for Troy because being alone as a parent is the greatest gift of all.

We went up to Canada as a family in the summer of 2019 to see Katie, and both boys still talk about the trip. Katie’s oldest is named Niko and my boys still refer to where we stayed as “Niko’s grandma’s house”.

They live in a beautiful waterfront home that Katie’s dad built and it’s basically a kid’s paradise. But hilariously, both boys talk about randomly getting ice cream at some small store downtown by her parent’s house. Ice cream can be eaten anywhere, but that’s what they’re focused on for this upcoming trip. Pfft.

2 boys standing with their great grandma

Troy’s grandma, Grandma Sweetie, celebrated her 96th birthday on Thursday! She’s a hoot but trends “dark” and tells us “I’ll be dead soon” or “this is my last birthday” each time we see her. She once told Jack that she hoped he didn’t get cancer and die since that is what killed most of her family members.

She now lives in a mostly independent living community which was a good move for her safety. Her eyesight sucks and her hearing is meh, but other than that she is super healthy and fit. We’re so lucky to still have her in our family!

a boy in jammies holding a slice of watermelon

I found a local day camp for Bennett and over the summer he will be there for four of the eight weeks they’re offering. Each camp runs for four days, for four hours each day. And we’re super lucky that it’s only 3 miles away AND really affordable.

Troy took him to his first day and said Bennett looked a little bit leery at first. He’s my slightly introverted kiddo and wanted to evaluate the situation, whereas Jack would have just run in without remembering to say goodbye.

Troy said they rounded a corner and there was an enormous pile of Squishmallows just sitting there waiting for Bennett to snuggle them. Bennett basically told Troy he could leave and went off into stuffy heaven.

I picked him up and he had a GREAT day and had a blast. He had always attended “summer camp” at his old Montessori preschool and could not figure out why this one didn’t require them to do any “work” (Montessori speak for learning projects). He was super excited to just play with all his new friends.

The teacher also told him that he is welcome to bring stuffies and wear jammies any day that he’d like. You’ve never seen a happier child in your entire life.

He has friends from school attending a few of the upcoming weeks of camp and he’s pretty stoked. I would have enrolled him in a more weeks but we’re trying to keep a 10 day buffer before his tonsil surgery where there is zero change he can catch a cold or the ‘rona.

When we were at Ocean Shores the other week, Jack asked Bennett if wanted to read The Fantastic Mr Fox. Jack was never a fan of chapter books as a kid and is only now getting into the genius that is Roald Dahl.

Bennett, LOVED The Fantastic Mr Fox and we are going to make our way through this box set of Roald Dahl books that Jack was gifted. Fun fact: if Bennett had been a girl, his name would have been Matilda because I love that book so much.

In the Garden This Week

We finally picked a few ripe blueberries this week! Or rather, this guy did. Jack is my berry monster and without raspberry, strawberry, and blueberry plants of our own, I would spend $2k+ a year feeding this man child.

a boy in a blue shirt and red shoes bend over picking blueberries
His face says “mom, I just love when you take photos of me”.

Bennett also found ripe peas and a few large carrots in one of the raised beds. They have been added to our lettuce harvest for a delicious week of fresh, hyper-local produce.

The main activity this week was just upkeep. Boring, boring upkeep. It seemed like everything needed to be trimmed or weeded. Every-thing.

We have this gorgeous and giant Japanese maple that grows up and over a retaining wall into our driveway. Every two(ish) years I have to do a major haircut on this beast because it starts to block my garage door.

Jack suggested that I only cut the part that blocks my garage door but then it would have been a gorgeous Japanese maple with a mullet. Hard pass.

The boys were good sports about hauling all the branches to the chicken yard while I did the cutting with some hand clippers and a sawzall. Yes, using a sawzall on a stunning Japanese maple is probably punishable by 50 lashes in the plant community. It is what it is.

After that, it was more weeding and battling the ever-present morning glory (bindweed for those across the pond) in the raspberry bed. Jack found three ripe raspberries, which called further attention to the horror show that is the morning glory in that area.

I would like to be cremated when I die (saying this here so someone reminds Troy if I pass first), but if I were to be buried, I would want “Sarah Cook, human, mother, wife, friend. She fought morning glory” on my tombstone.

a red basket with strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries

What I’m reading this week

I finished This Tender Land, and wow, what a beautiful book! I highly recommend it and was sad when it was over. Just stunning.


I adore the podcast Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend and I somehow missed this older episode with Bill Hader. It was such a delightful find in my feed.

Bill Hader is an absolute genius and if you haven’t watched Barry, start now!


Karen left this five-star review on our brand new Pea and Bacon Risotto {Pin this recipe} and 1) you know I love when people make new recipes quickly 2) cheese should 100% be measured with your heart!

Made this last night and it was great! I added closer to a cup of cheese 🙂 Went well with chicken thighs but I could see this as a stand-alone meal as well. Thanks for the recipe!

a grey bowl with pea and bacon risotto and rose gold fork.


Air Fryer Baked Sweet PotatoThese Air Fryer Baked Sweet Potatoes are ready in less time than oven-baked. Simple and fuss-free, these perfectly cooked whole sweet potatoes are great for a fast dinner or a weeknight side dish. {Pin this recipe}

A sweet potato on a tan plate topped with butter and green onions

Blueberry Rhubarb JamHomemade Blueberry Rhubarb Jam is a delicious spread for toast, yogurt, or dessert recipes. Thanks to the low-sugar recipe, this blueberry jam tastes fresh and bright, just like real fruit. {Pin this recipe}

5 jars of blueberry rhubarb jam, one is opened with a spoon sticking out of it.

Confessions – everyone’s favorite silly post of the month.

A woman with a finger up to her mouth saying "shhhhh"


  1. Canning Peaches – like sunshine in a jar that you can enjoy all year long. {Pin this tutorial}
  2. Air Fryer Egg Rolls – vegan and vegetarian as written but super customizable! On, and did you know you can FREEZE these? {Pin this recipe}
  3. Garlic Butter Rice – so easy and so comforting! {Pin this recipe}
  4. Peach Ice Cream – a cold bowl of summer. Seriously, you’re going to love it! {Pin this tutorial}
  5. Canning Potatoes – there seems to be a bumper crop happening this summer because people are canning! {Pin this tutorial}


Our garage freezer got left ajar twice in a week and that bad boy iced up. Thankfully, we didn’t lose any food, but it did mean that I had to defrost the freezer on Saturday. A good freezer deep-clean is my favorite, and it inspired most of the meals for this week.

Monday:: We’re eating earlyish for the BBQ but if anyone is still hungry there will be leftovers. Jack might also randomly have soccer practice, so whatever.

Tuesday:: Takeout to support a local small business.

Wednesday:: Troy is making something and it will be delicious.

Thursday:: Something from the freezer.

Friday:: Popcorn, leftovers, and movie night.

Saturday:: Troy will feed himself something. We’ll be in the Great White North.

Sunday:: Troy will feed himself something. We’ll be in the Great White North.

What are you having this week?

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6 comments on “Scattered Sundays”

  1. When did Jack grow up? How did this happen?? I’ve been reading your blog for several years but it seems like he went from snot faced toddler to almost grown man in the blink of an eye!

  2. Wait a minute…..not all Norwegians are nasty. I am not one of those and I am 100 %. I also do not like heat and humidity and have lived in Florida since 1966 with a few years ‘up North’, but returned to FL. Returned to FL because kids lived here and grands. Enjoy y our humor. BJ

  3. “Old-timey bank robber”…. I laughed for quite a bit on that one… B did look like look very Kewl in those purely-pink sunglasses… (although you said you were not cool) haha… your Scattered Sundays blog is such a relief to read over all the other sad things going on across the country … thank you Sarah .. sorry but “you light up my life” (😵‍💫) have a great 4th … Aloha from the place you’ll never want to visit ..🙃 (Humid,hot, sunshine and scary water) oh we’ll say hi to Canada for me… S

    • He looked like something from a touristy ghost town. Ha!

      We did go to Kauai in April and the weather was perfect for this pasty whiner. 🙂