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Scattered Sundays

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Raise your hand if you recently assisted in a chicken catheter procedure. And by “assisted” I mean, you held the chicken and looked away and tried not to gag while your husband cathed a chicken.

Don’t worry, there are no photos of this in the post!!!

One of our older chickens recently developed something called water belly. They basically just swell and swell, stop eating, and pass away. It’s usually a sign of heart failure and it’s just one of those chicken things that happen. Like pox. No, YOU shut up.

Troy read about how to treat it and it basically involves draining the water monthly. This prolongs their life until the chicken eventually passes away from old age. He did a lot more research than I did because once I saw “drain” and “needle in vent”, I was OUT.

Troy is used to gross things from work and inserting the catheter didn’t phase him for a second. He kept saying “this is so cool” while I silently died inside and held the chicken steady.

Eventually, I did look and my gosh, A LOT of fluid came from that chicken. Like a lot. Within 5 minutes of starting the procedure, she perked up and was looking around. She had been lethargic and in a bad place before.

So much fluid was draining and she was getting so animated that Troy suggested we just let her wander around our yard for another 15-20 minutes with the catheter in. She roamed, ate some grass, and bragged a little about her freedom to the other chickens behind the fence.

Fluid was STILL draining 20 minutes later. But, we had somewhere we had to be, and weren’t comfortable leaving her out of the fence, and weren’t comfortable letting her back in with the girls while still cathed.

To speed up the process, and I’m not making this up, Troy picked her up, petted her head, and then super gently SQUEEZED her so that another 1 cup of fluid came out. Hold me, that is so nasty.

He took the cath out, sprayed some ointment on it, gave her some grass (chicken version of getting a sticker at the doctor), and put her back in with the rest of the flock. And my friends, she has been happy, energetic, and doing great ever since. I’m very thankful he has a stomach for these things.

Despite her restored health, our flock is currently in full-on freeloader season. It’s so annoying. During the fall and winter, egg laying slows down, but now is supposed to be peak production. And…it’s just not.

Part of it is our laying hens are older and likely in peri-henopause. And our eight newbies are not yet old enough to start laying (likely another 2-3 months). And so, I just watch them all, eating the food I buy them and doing NOTHING like slackers. Get a job, ya lazy bums!

a back roller dressed up like a high school graduate.

I have two useful recommendations for you today. The first is something that I wish had been around years ago. You know when you use lotion from a pump and then eventually there is still about 1-3 inches of lotion left in the bottle but the pump no longer reaches it? Annoying.

Sometimes we remove the pump and slam the bottle on our hands for months to get out as much as we can. Sometimes Troy cuts the bottle down to the last 3 inches and then we just dip our hands in there. But fluff gets in there and eventually, it’s gross.

My sister bought these bottle thingies and I got some too. It basically allows you to flip your bottle upside down without the pump and get every last drop.

I’m still working on how much pressure to apply when getting the lotion out (my hands, arms, legs, and elbows were VERY hydrated there for a few days), but I love that it helps you get all the product that you paid for.

grey shoes on a concrete patio.

The other recommendation is these shoes. A reader posted about them on Instagram and I was already wide-toe box shoe curious. In fact, I had already ordered these shoes to try out after hearing the founder discuss them on this podcast.

Given my family’s history with foot issues, I am always willing to invest in good footwear that I can keep for a very long time. Quality pays when you’re older.

But, her shoes were half the price and the ones I had ordered seemed so stiff on the sides. I tried them on shortly after my toe procedure two weeks ago, and they just weren’t for me. But the more affordable shoes were comfortable from the very start.

She posted about them after walking in NYC all day for a week and said her feet never hurt. And I’m definitely interested in giving my toes some space to spread out. Even if doing so only means I never have another ingrown toenail removed again.

a kid standing in a living room in front of a small folding table.

I’ll be taking some time off the last week of June and the first week of July. It’s time and I’m ready for it. There will be posts this week, a Sunday post next week, and likely some previously scheduled new posts the last week of June.

I’m taking a full-on break where my laptop stays off and unplugged. There won’t be a Sunday post on July 2nd, and no comments will be reviewed or approved from June 25th-July 3rd.

I also plan to try reducing the length of my Sunday posts during the summer. I will likely do a quick recap, and then share the posts that were published that week, comment highlights, garden updates, and our meal plan.

My work time is extremely limited in the summer with the kids up in my damn face all day. And I think for my own mental health and desire to be a less shouty parent, this is one area of my life where I can control. And if it doesn’t work, then at least I tried.

The other sanity saver I had planned for the summer will wrap up on Tuesday. As of Tuesday afternoon, I will have photographed all the images that I need for all the recipes I’m publishing now through October 1st. Yahoo!

It was both a marathon and a sprint, but it’s so nice to put my photography equipment in the storage closet and not have to think about it for a few months. It’s a true treat!

a messy kitchen.

Wishing all the dads or dad figures out there a very happy Father’s Day today! I made Troy homemade pop tarts (it’s this recipe that I have used for years), and the boys and I are going to make ourselves scarce today so he can nap and watch 459 30-second clips on things on Netflix to his heart’s content.

multiple photos of a dad with his kids.


Y’all know I love listening to podcasts about scams. Well, I love stories about scammers who get caught and get their comeuppance (that is a word we need to use more). Not a fan of those who get away with it.

I started “Spellcaster“, a podcast about the rise and fall of Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder of FTX. Even if you know nothing about cryptocurrency, you’ll find this series very interesting. It gives off big Elizabeth Holmes vibes.


Longtime reader, Christine left this five-star review on our Air Fryer Shrimp Tacos {Pin this recipe}:

We had these for dinner last night and they were incredible. It was a late dinner, and we were a bit concerned about time, but this really was quick and SO DELCIOUS. Clean up (my part of the chores) was easy, too! This recipe is back on the calendar for the come week, and I can’t wait. We did omit the cayenne due to child who refuses anything spicy and used uncooked frozen shrimp because that’s what we had, otherwise we stuck true to recipe (the time adjustments worked great!).

a platter of shrimp tacos with lime cabbage slaw.


Mint Chocolate Chip Ice CreamLearn to make your own Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream. A fresh mint taste and all-natural ingredients mean this will be the best mint ice cream you’ll ever make. {Pin this recipe}

mint chocolate chip ice cream in a bowl on a white surface

Can You Freeze HummusLearn all the tips and tricks for freezing hummus to reduce food waste and stock your freezer. Learning how to freeze hummus for quick snacks and fast meals is a great way to maximize leftovers. {Pin this tutorial}

a teal freezer tray with hummus on a white board with a bowl of chips, lemons, and parsley.

Instant Pot BroccoliSave time and money by making Instant Pot Broccoli part of your weekly dinner rotation. It’s so easy to whip up this tender broccoli for a fast and healthy side dish. {Pin this recipe}

a bowl of green steamed broccoli with a lemon wedge



It’s a very busy week with end-of-school activities and a family adventure, so we’re going to wing it and eat from the fridge/freezer. I’m already stressed.

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12 comments on “Scattered Sundays”

  1. You are an amazing person and Troy is a chicken hero! Also, thanks for not sharing photos.

    I have been wearing zero drop/wider toe box shoes for… 11 years? Which I think is also about how long I’ve been following your blog. Crazy. Anyway, some of my favorite brands are Lems- they are based out of Colorado and if I remember correctly, they shoes are made in CO as well. For shoes that are easy to find and fairly comfortable, I go with Altra. I stack the clearance section at REI and buy multiple pairs when I can get them. For a very thorough list, check out Katy Bowmen
    I am so excited for you for taking a vacation! Good job!!

    • Troy is absolutely a chicken hero. I am definitely not.

      Thanks for the brand recommendation. I love the idea that they’re made in the US!

  2. A chicken CATHETER??!  Where in the world does one even procure such a thing.  haha  That is just wild!  Pretty cool how much it seemed to help your chicken though.  I’m really impressed with you guys (especially Troy)!  That was really kind of you.  Hope your other chickens get back to work soon!

    • It was one for a human. He randomly had it in his EMT bag that he keeps in our car. Why he had it, I don’t know. What he thought he was ever going to do with it…again, no idea!

      Troy gets all the credit for it. I would have never done such a thing.

  3. I have ever so slightly wide feet, too narrow for a wide width shoe, but too wide for most other shoes. Last year I bought a pair of Topo sneakers, and now I refuse to wear any of my other shoes. They have a soft, flexible upper. The whole construction is light weight. They have a square toe box that fit my feet. The insole is like walking on a memory foam mattress.

    They were a bit pricey, but worth every penny. I learned my lesson on badly fitting shoes when I ever up having a bunionectomy. Wearing good shoes is so much better than spending two months on crutches. I’m trying to decide if I want to buy a second pair just to match my gym outfit.

    • Oh, I love the idea of those insoles. That is how I feel about my running shoes.

      You’re so right – wearing good shoes is sooooo much easier and cheaper in the long run. It’s like if we had that $80 washing machine alarm back in Nov, it would have saved us A LOT of grief.

  4. I thought I was the only one who cut lotion bottles to get to the crazy amount that is left the pump won’t reach! Thank you for the link, I’ve already added to my cart! 

  5. “Hold me, that is so nasty.” I wanted to cry I was laughing so hard. You are hilariously funny. And the life you’re living! Chicken catheters?? Who knew there was such a thing. (More importantly, who wanted to know.) But I’m not judging. I appreciate the fodder for your unique brand of hilarity. Thank you! And thanks for the Amazon links. This week’s were especially useful. I’m just at the bottom of the bottle of my daily lotion, and E is having foot issues. God bless you, Sarah!

    • Truly it made me want to gag, Chris!! Chicken catheters are likely not a thing. Troy randomly had one for a human in his EMT kit. Again, GROSS!

      I hope E’s foot is feeling better soon. Our jobs require us to be on our feet a lot, and that’s not fun when you’re in pain.

  6. You deserve some down time! Enjoy every moment with your family. 
    Very interesting about the chicken – never heard of that. I’m sure it’s not a pleasant end for the chicken. 
    Going to check out the shoes. 

    • Thanks, Jan!

      She seemed to not even notice it was happening. Which means she was either in a really rough place, or it wasn’t painful. Invasive, yes.