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Scattered Sundays

Who wants to hear the wildest and weirdest tale that has ever involved a plumber, potential flooding, and a pipe?

And you’re like “nah, Sarah, you already told us this story over the last six months. We know”.

My friends. You know NOTHING.

Early in the week, when Troy was at work, Bill the plumber showed up at my house. Bill is the neighborhood plumber and works with the contractor who is our neighbor and also restored our basement.

Bill told me that Troy had called him last week to say that a hose bib on the back of the house seemed to be leaking. And that he was sorry that he just got the message that morning, but could he please take a look at it?

Troy hadn’t said a word to me about this, but whatever. I told Bill to go ahead and he headed out behind the house. He checked it out and said that the bib was definitely busted and needed to be replaced. He didn’t have the part but said he would be back tomorrow.

Troy got home the next day and it had been a brutal 24-hour shift. He was exhausted and settled in for a long nap. While he was sleeping, Bill showed back up with the part and got to work.

At some point during this process, Troy woke up and I said “gee thanks for telling me about the busted hose. I was so confused and looked like an idiot when Bill showed up yesterday”. Troy was still exhausted and looked confused and said “what in the world are you talking about”?

I explained how Bill stopped by after Troy had called him and was out there right now fixing it. Troy looked at me and told me he had never called Bill. Never happened. He doesn’t even have Bill’s phone number.

We ran out to tell Bill he had us confused for a different family, and as we approached him, he was pulling the pipe out of the exterior of the house. My friends, IT WAS BUSTED.

We just stood there and looked at it and him. And all of us were so confused. This pipe was behind my dad’s kitchen wall and would have burst during the next hard freeze we had. And you know, flooded his newly restored apartment.

The three of us were pretty dumbfounded. And then Bill said “Well if you didn’t call me, who did? Who is waiting on me to come and fix their hose”?

Growing up, wildfires were an Eastern Washington problem, and we knew that late every summer for 4-6 weeks, the news would be reporting on them. Starting 5-10 years ago, we noticed more and more smoke in the western part of the state, usually starting in late July or early August.

My friends, it’s mid-May and we’re already dealing with wildfire smoke from Canada. I’m truly terrified for what this summer will bring all of us in terms of wildfires, smoke, and air quality. Stay safe, people.

eggs benedict and asparagus on white plates.
Separate plates. Food not touching, because I am not an animal.

Mother’s Day was really nice. We went to church, I took a long walk, had a delicious brunch that Troy made (above), got some fantastic cards (below), worked in the garden, and had a tasty dinner with my lovely inlaws.

a mother's day card in the style of Law and Order SVU.

I had two wins this week in the recipe testing department. They’re not all home runs (remember the 8 attempts at those dang air fryer cheese curds before I got that right?), so it’s really nice when something goes right.

One is a main dish and will be on the site in September and another is a dessert that you’ll see in August. Yep, food bloggers plan that far ahead. My kids have very much enjoyed the trial run on the summertime desserts.

Analytics have proven time and time again that my readers don’t want desserts from me, but I still sneak 1-4 in each year. If it were up to me, this site would be 50% soups and 50% desserts.

In the Garden This Week

This week has been all about more weeding and watering. With temps ranging from the mid-90s to the low-80s, this unseasonably warm weather has me constantly watering our newest additions to the garden.

Usually this time of year I plant things and then ignore them until July when I start to do some light watering. Not this year, my friends! Not this year.

My Mother’s Day garden clean-up afternoon last Sunday was great. It was 90˚F and therefore disgusting, but I was alone, listening to podcasts, covered in dirt, and happy to be improving the yard.

The strawberries are fully weeded, half of our blueberries have been weeded, and I tackled about 75% of the raspberry patch. I finished trimming the old growth leftover from last year’s raspberry canes, and now it is just a matter of removing as much of the morning glory as I can.

The weeding will never end, and the area closest to the road looks like a hot freaking mess. But, I can only do so much. A little bit of work each day and eventually…it will still be covered in weeds. That’s how gardening works.


If you were to drill down into my podcast listening habits, it is equal parts: business, true crime, comedy, and investigative/debunking scams.

One of my all-time favorite debunking podcasts is The Dream (go listen to it right now!). This week, I’m enjoying a new show from Lionsgate Sound called Scamanda. From the website:

Amanda is a wife. A mother. A blogger. A Christian. A charming, beautiful, bubbly, young woman who lives life to the fullest. But Amanda is dying, with a secret she doesn’t want anyone to know. (source)

What I’m reading this week

I finished The Golden Couple and while it wasn’t exactly my kind of story, it was a quick read and full of some good twists and turns.

I started Best of Friends by Kamila Shamsie. I’m not too far into it, but I think I’m going to like it. We’ll see! It is set in Pakistan in the late 1980s. Every time they mention a food or a word I don’t know, I google it. This book is making me very hungry.


OG reader, Elaina, left this five-star review on our Chicken Bacon Ranch Casserole {Pin this recipe}:

Ohmygosh is this goooood! I messed up when I made it and added things out of order but that didn’t take away from the flavor. This is a meal that is going into rotation at my house! 

a white skillet filled with chicken bacon ranch casserole topped with chopped parsley.


Tortellini Pasta SaladThis Tortellini Pasta Salad is a simple and easy meal that you can throw together in 15 minutes or less. Perfect as a fast side, main dish, or quick lunch, this cold tortellini salad will become a family favorite. {Pin this recipe}

a cold pasta salad in a white bowl.

Pickled Vegetables RecipeThis recipe makes amazing and delicious spicy quick pickled vegetables that are so good, and easy to make. Once you try these tasty vegetables, you can’t stop eating them! {Pin this recipe}

3 jars of pickled encurtido and vegetables on a white board

Yogurt Ranch DressingCreamy, tangy, and packed with flavor, this homemade Yogurt Ranch Dressing is ready in just 5 minutes. Made with pantry staples and ingredients you can actually pronounce, this healthy ranch dressing is also kid-approved. {Pin this recipe}

A glass bottle of ranch dressing in front of a bowl of salad


  1. Air Fryer Cookies – I’m a big fan of this recipe and you’re going to love it! {Pin this recipe}
  2. Garlic Butter Rice – I can’t think of a week that goes by in this house without at least one batch of this comfort food being made. {Pin this recipe}
  3. Air Fryer Egg Rolls – vegan and vegetarian as written but super customizable! Oh, and did you know you can FREEZE these? {Pin this recipe}
  4. Honey Simple Syrup – the secret sauce of our mega-popular Mojito Mocktail. {Pin this recipe}
  5. Make Ahead Scrambled Eggs – one of my favorite ways to meal prep breakfast. {Pin this recipe}


Monday:: Organic hot dogs, fries, and veggies.

Tuesday:: Takeout on the way home between (our last!!!!) cross-country meet and a soccer kick-off meeting for the new season.

Wednesday:: Troy is making dinner and we’ll be excited to eat it.

Thursday:: Pasta, veggies, and garlic bread that we’re collectively shoving into our mouths as we jet between multiple events.

Friday:: Popcorn, leftovers, and movie night.

Saturday:: Having some friends over for dinner. Her husband is currently deployed and her kids have been dying for burgers. So, you know what’s happening! Troy is making his famous burgers (using his famous burger seasoning) and we’ll figure out the sides as it gets closer to the weekend.

Sunday:: Angling myself into bringing dinner to my sister’s so we can meet their new puppy. This aunt is VERY excited. Jack and I fighting over who gets to nibble the puppy’s face first.

What’s on your menu for this week?

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21 comments on “Scattered Sundays”

  1. Wow! That was some blessing there with the plumber confusing which house he was supposed to go to! 

    That casserole looks amazing, and also reminds me I need to make my fave recipe of yours—the leftover turkey rice casserole 🙂

    • Sure is! Someone was looking out for us.

      Your love that recipe inspired me to redo it with better instructions and new photos last year. I always would forget about it being on the blog, but you reminded me.

  2. Definitely angels!

    I love dessert recipes almost as much as I love desserts. And, just so you know, I love rhubarb anything. Rhubarb may be my favorite VEGETABLE. I just wish it had a longer growing season.

    • Rhubarb RULES! And yes, it’s a short season veggie but have you ever frozen it? It works amazing in desserts even frozen!

      My tutorial:

      • I have . . . but I struggle with making it work well after I take it out of the freezer. Some recipes instruct to use it frozen. Some say to thaw completely and drain it. The frozen recipes usually turn out to liquid-y and the thawed and drained recipes leave the rhubarb tasteless. It is a never-ending war of indecision. So, I usually just make a rhubarb compote and put it over Greek yogurt . . . which is very tasty. But, I want all the rhubarb recipes!

  3. Angels walk among us, and (one of) yours is named, “Bill.” That is the only possible explanation. 

    We’re in our new post now almost a year, so I’ve decided to try gardening to fit in with the neighbors. Two raised galvanized steel beds with trellises! Six of the eight mini-cucumber seeds have sprouted into flourishing plants; the 3 Black Cherry Tomato plants I started from seed are nearly 18″ tall (with flowers!) (we’re in Zone 7a); and the Bergamot is bursting forth. In the other bed the 36 French Breakfast Radishes are popping up; and the Jalapeno, Chocolate Ghost and Habanero plants are holding their own! I also planted 7 Dahlia tubers into the mix to make use of the trellises, but now I only remember where I planted 6 of them. And, it seems I have a volunteer Sunflower, from I-don’t-know-where. The summer blooming season will be mysteriously fun!

    Our Darling Daughter, who has accepted her PhD fellowship at UDub, has begun apartment hunting. Umm, why do so many Seattle flats not have ovens? She/we found the “perfect” place that met all criteria, but the kitchen lacked an oven! Ditto for the dozens of places she’s been looking at. The best compromise will be to purchase a countertop convection oven to take up what little countertop space she will have, but even then, an appliance drawing 15AMP may be a no-no in some buildings. 

    A little late for the full week menu, but what the heck.

    Sunday. An overly massive green salad with the too-many items I bought at Saturday’s Farmers Market.
    Monday. Garlic Roasted Bone Marrow on homemade toasted bread with a veggie platter. The marrow bones were purchased at an honor farm down the road, and were spectacular. 
    Tuesday. Lamb and Spring Pea Lasagna
    Wednesday. Leftovers
    Thursday. Cold Beet and Cucumber Borscht. I’m not a fan of flavored water–I mean, soup–but I grew up with this dish and it’s like a harbinger of warmer weather. I’ve made pesto with the beet greens to toss with a pasta next week.
    Friday. All bets are off. We Empty Nesters play the weekend meals by whim.

    • Good luck with the garden!

      I have literally never heard of an apartment not having an oven. This is not a Seattle thing. I wonder if it is a proximity to student housing thing?

  4. Okay time to start writing for Guideposts because that story belongs there too! Wow!!!

  5. Any chance your dad made the call and Bill is confusing the names?

    • Nope. Due to my dad’s mobility issues, he can’t access the hose bib in question. Also, he was home when Bill came by the first day and was just as confused as I was.

  6. Angels are real, folks. Don’t stop believing.

  7. I’m here to tell you if you want to bring me a meal…I have an 8 month old German Shepherd puppy who is adorable…of course it’s a bit of a journey since I’m innBoise…

  8. Ok so who called Bill?
    I just got home from the grocery store but will be going back for some cheese tortellini and pesto. That looks so good and I will be using Olive Garden Italian dressing.😋

    • Noooooobody knows! I’m not sure if he deleted the message or not and Bill doesn’t strike me a tech savvy dude. Hopefully whomever it was will call him back.

      I can’t remember if you’re a Costco shopper or not, but they sell the Olive Garden dressing at most locations.

  9. I am so glad that you had a peaceful Mother’s Day! I laughed out loud at the weeding comment. It truly never ends! I was wondering if your eReader has the same feature as mine where you can highlight a word and it will pop up with the definition or a Wikipedia article? It was super helpful when I read a book with non-English words and phrases!

    • I bet it does…however I turn off the wifi so that the library can’t repo my books until I finish them. And I do a lot of reading in the pick up line for B’s school where it is 1998 and there is zero and I mean zero cell reception.

  10. I’m trying to walk longer with the dogs and I’ve found listening to podcasts helps me tolerate Everest’s crazy a little better. Thanks for the recommendations! 

    Puppies can be just as draining as babies in the beginning so it’s very thoughtful of you to bring a meal to your sister 😉

    • Podcasts are the best for long walks! And dishes, weeding, cleaning, etc.

      She laughed when I offered to bring food and said “I’m not birthing the puppy”. But it’s still a lot of work and they’ll be tired.