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Scattered Sundays

Full disclosure: this post was written and scheduled by Friday morning so that I could fully enjoy our trip to Canada to hang out with Katie.

It is likely that the world (we all know I mean the US) has gone to hell in just a few days. So if any giant news has come out between Friday and Sunday morning, my reaction (it will probably be a mixture of being livid and sad) will not be included in this post. Let’s continue.

We got a delivery of firewood this week, which is my favorite delivery day of the year. Stacking firewood is instant gratification and it’s like Tetris for Type A adults. You’ll never find me happier than when I am making all the pieces fit.

In April 2021 we replaced the main windows in our living room. They are giant and were very old, and it wasn’t until fall 2021/winter 2022 that we realized how freaking inefficient they truly were.

We don’t burn in our woodstove all day and we do supplement with our furnace during the day, but there is nothing like a cozy fire in the evening from November 1st through early April. Between a fairly mild winter and the new windows, I estimate that we burned about 20-30% less firewood than in a normal year.

a row of stacked firewood
The before

We hadn’t refilled our woodshed (you can see how Troy and my FIL built it from leftover pallets in this post) since February or March 2021. We likely had enough firewood for one more season, but it’s so nice to have the shed fully stocked for peace of mind.

The person we buy from is an older man who just likes to chop firewood and delivers it for no additional cost. It’s always perfectly seasoned (for the woodstove newbies, you cannot just chop wood and then burn it. It has to be seasoned, AKA dried for 6-24 months). The stuff he delivered on Wednesday was cut in summer 2020.

a big stack of firewood
After: hard to tell but this is three rows deep.

Last week I mentioned that we went to see Troy’s grandma to celebrate her 96th birthday. We had cake out in the lovely shaded courtyard, and while out there I noticed an empty chicken coop.

It was one of those tiny prefab coops that are meant for a handful of chickens but people insist on shoving 10-12 in there. The coop was in great shape but clearly hadn’t been used in a long time.

I jokingly told Troy’s parents that the coop and the setting would be perfect for our geriatric chicken, PooPoo Sandwiches (PPS). At nine years old she is too old to live with the rest of our flock because they are intent on attacking her. The pecking order is a real-life thing, my friends.

In jest, I said PooPoo Sandwiches was like the other residents – old, hard of hearing, slow, sleeps a lot, doesn’t eat much, is lonely, and needs a little help in the morning and at night. We had a giggle about it, but the thought stuck in my brain all week.

I ended up calling the facility mid-week and they said they would LOVE to have PooPoo Sandwiches join their residents! Apparently, they have some other chickens who live there but they roam and roost at night and don’t use the coop.

On Friday, we dropped off PPS at assisted living with some food and a bag of kale for her and her new buddies. You know those stories that parents tell their kids about “taking their pets away to live on a farm”? Well, PPS is basically doing that. But for realsies.

We’re excited that she’ll be around new friends but that everyone has enough space to roam and be kind to each other. She’s also going to be sticking close to the coop which means she’ll bring joy to the residents who gather in the courtyard. PPS is basically living out the Golden Girls for chickens fantasy.

a kid straddling the walls of a narrow hallway.

This has nothing to do with anything, but I cannot tell you how much I am enjoying NOT taking photographs of food this summer. Summer me is really appreciative of Spring me for hustling for six weeks straight to photograph 45 summer and early fall recipes. What a freaking gift.

2 women wearing the same shoes with their legs crossed in the exact same way.

Next week I’ll recap our trip to Canada. I’m sure it was great and that ice cream was involved, but I’ll share more next week. Also, I’m going to have a whoooooole segment next week introducing you to our new family member, Lando.

And no, Lando is not a chicken or a farm animal. Troy has absolutely put his foot down on me getting baby fainting goats. Rude.

In the Garden This Week

I think we’re in the maintenance phase at this point. The tomatoes don’t seem to be growing a single inch because of the weather. My tomato and cucumber plants in mid-July look like they normally do when I plant them in early May.

My fingers are crossed for a sunny and dry September and early October because I swear we’re not going to harvest a single summer crop until school is back in session.

At least the berries (strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries (we have 26 plants…) are all producing right now), lettuce, and peas.

What I’m reading this week

I started It Ends With Us early in the week because the book generated a lot of buzz. If you loved this book, many apologies for what I’m about to say…but it was hot garbage.

It felt like it was written by a 16-year-old who got a copy of Cosmo from 1995 and thought they were writing for adults. A few times I checked to make sure it wasn’t a YA (Young Adult) book. My research confirmed it was intended for actual grownups to read it.

The writing was so bad that I did something I almost never do. I just stopped reading it. I’m usually committed to the end, but life is too short.

Thankfully, my copy of Invisible Storm by Jason Kander was delivered on Tuesday. Yes, an actual hard copy book; that’s how much I wanted to support this person and his cause!

Invisible Storm is a memoir written by Jason Kander and co-written by his wife, Diana Kander. It’s the true story of a soldier with PTSD who also happened to be on a rocketship to political stardom.

The book is fantastic (so far but I have every reason to believe it will continue to be an amazing read) and 100% of the profits go to support Veterans Community Project (VCP). A little about VCP from their site:

The organization builds or modifies homes, and gifts them, mortgage-free, to injured veterans and their families, while providing support services to enable them to build better and brighter lives and reach new heights. It’s truly an honor to serve the men and women who have courageously served and sacrificed for our country.

WHAT I’M LISTENING TO THIS WEEK

To keep the Jason Kander train rolling, I encourage you to listen to his podcast, Majority 54. It’s a good one and always is a source of a conversation starter in our household.

READER SPOTLIGHT OF THE WEEK

Kerry left this lovely five-star review on our tutorial on How to Can Cranberry Sauce {Pin this tutorial}:

I love your cranberry sauce recipe! I know it’s a funny time of year to be making cranberry sauce, but I use it in a crock pot recipe with beef brisket and veggies and small potatoes. Total yum!  I made sure to buy a ton of fresh cranberries last fall and shoved them in my freezer so I would have a supply all year. Sometimes I can it. Sometimes I use the whole batch at once. 

Every time I make it I learn something new. This time it was not to cook cranberry sauce with a white cotton jacket on! Oh well! That’s what bleach is for. Happy 4th!

3 jars of homemade canned cranberry sauce with fresh cranberries on a white board

ON SUSTAINABLE COOKS THIS WEEK

Air Fryer Omelet Light and fluffy Air Fryer Omelets are about to be your new favorite breakfast! Ready in a flash with whatever toppings you’d like, these omelettes in the air fryer are great for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. {Pin this recipe}

a fluffy air fryer omelet topped with sliced tomatoes, cheese, and parsley on a grey plate.

Chocolate Zucchini MuffinsDelicious and fluffy, these double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins are the perfect tasty treat. Made with an impressive three cups of shredded zucchini, they’re so good and packed with amazing flavor and chocolate chips. {Pin this recipe}

3 chocolate zucchini muffins on a white plate with a small jug of milk behind it.

Pesto Without Pine NutsThis easy homemade pesto without pine nuts recipe comes together with only 6 simple ingredients. Homemade pesto is delicious and affordable. {Pin this recipe}

a hand dipping a cheesy breadstick into a white bowl of homemade pesto.
Many thanks to 13 yr old Jack for always getting voluntold to be my hand model.

THE FIVE MOST POPULAR POSTS THIS WEEK

  1. Canning Peaches – like sunshine in a jar that you can enjoy all year long. {Pin this tutorial}
  2. Peach Ice Cream – a cold bowl of summer. Seriously, you’re going to love it! {Pin this tutorial}
  3. Air Fryer Egg Rolls – vegan and vegetarian as written but super customizable! On, and did you know you can FREEZE these? {Pin this recipe}
  4. Garlic Butter Rice – so easy and so comforting! {Pin this recipe}
  5. Air Fryer Cookies – because you want cookies but not boob sweat from turning on the oven. {Pin this recipe}

MEAL PLAN

Monday:: We’re eating on the road on our way back from Canada.

Tuesday:: Troy is making something and we will happily eat it.

Wednesday:: Troy’s burgers. Jack is having two friends spend the night and he is dying for them to try his dad’s burgers.

Thursday:: I’m testing a new recipe for the blog for fall.

Friday:: we’re having a BBQ with my side of the family at my aunt’s.

Saturday:: Popcorn, leftovers, and movie night.

Sunday:: TBD. I’ll tell you more next week! 🙂

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19 comments on “Scattered Sundays”

  1. Oh, I have firewood envy! Our old(er) gentleman, who also loved to cut firewood AND deliver it (madrone, no less), had to go to assisted living and we mourn. And speaking of chickens, we just found out today that Big Red is a rooster – he attempted a half-hearted crow, then we saw him (confirmed gender pronoun) jumping on one of the hens. Sorry, he’s gotta go. He’s gonna be a freebie on the local feed store board. Hope you had a blast in Canada.

    • I’m so sorry you lost that resource! It’s one of those wonderful connections that is so good while you have it.

      Ugh, sorry about Big Red. That happened to us with Kylo Hen and BB-Egg a few years ago. May Big Red find a wonderful new home.

  2. Happy for PPS and happy that you can stop worrying about the old bird. Glad the residents can enjoy her and that you have visitation rights. I have absolutely no idea . . . what is the life expectancy of a hen? She’s probably right where she should be.

    Lando . . . Land Rover?

    Bad books . . . I routinely will start a book and, if it doesn’t grab me by about page 35, I toss it. Life is too short and there are too many good books out there to waste more than a few minutes reading junk. I always think, “What book will I regret never having read because I spent good time reading this deplorable piece of *&$#*?”

    • Most chickens last about 3-6 years. PPS is really beating the odds these days.

      Hard no to the Land Rover, but excellent guess!!

      I think your page 35 rule is a smart one. Usually, I’m too willing to punish myself by finishing it. Page 35 is a great limit.

  3. Hooray for a nice retirement for PPS!

    I’m very excited to hear about Lando (and if the name was inspired by the Babylon 5 character).

    So hubs has a friend in Canada who just sent up a box of Canadian treats and I can say without a doubt that Maple Leaf cookies may be my new favorite thing. They’re little sandwich cookies of mapley happiness (the brand we were sent was Leclerc) and should be sought out if at all possible. I’m probably going to try to find a recipe for them (and make them a little less sweet). So so good with coffee!

    • It was inspired by a Star Wars character. ๐Ÿ™‚

      I snacked a box of them based on your recommendation. Different brand but that’s all we had access to in the small town where we were. I’ll try them this Sunday (when I eat all my delicious sugary treats for the week).

      • I am super impressed that you can restrict yourself to one day of sugary treats a week! They are sweet for sure! Definitely have some milk or black coffee on hand.

      • I have to. I have a straight-up sugar addiction if I don’t watch myself carefully.

        I’ve tried all forms of sugar management and so far this one seems to be the most sustainable.

  4. The new home for Poo Poo Sandwiches is my favorite.

  5. I love the color blocking to break up the post!ย 
    Hope your Canada vacation is awesome!

  6. Hope you all had the best Canada trip!

  7. Enjoy your vacation and friend time! Can’t wait to hear more about Lando. Woohoo for PooPoo Sandwiches, what a lucky chick!

    Thanks for the book/podcast/organization recommendation. Looking forward to checking them out!

  8. That is wonderful for the residents! I am sure PPS will have a much more relaxing time there!
    Question.. I assume you got the windows replaces April 22? I read it a few times and was waiting to find out that the windows were replaced in April 21 and were a fail and was looking to see you complained to the company and they were coming to replace! lol I am always game for a great customer service fight! lol
    Travel safe

    • I might have explained it incorrectly, hence the confusion. The windows were installed in April 2021. The old ones were so inefficient that we burned more wood than we did last year. The new windows are great and really insulate the house better.

    • When we showed up there was already a “buzz” around her arrival. Some of the CNAs were scrambling to go tell certain residents that there was a new chicken. Apparently, the man in 211 just loves spending time with the chickens. We hope PPS brings him some joy.