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Scattered Sundays

I sprained my butt muscle this week while walking up a super steep hill.

So, this is 37 I suppose.

Speaking of my aging body, I feel like I should be getting serious about some sort of facial night cream. Does anyone have any recommendations? I try to stick to clean health and beauty products and am ok paying a bit more for quality stuff. So, let the recommendations flow!

I’m not sure how YOU go to the library, but…

How are you all doing? Half the country has been polar vortexed and is just now thawing out. I have friends in some pretty cold places and they’re all officially over being freaking freezing.

“Seattle winter” (nighttime temps in the 20’s) is headed our way this week and I’m thankful for our woodstove for keeping our home warm and cozy. Anytime we don’t have a fire in the evening I realize how drafty our living room windows are. Even with curtains drawn, it’s still pretty chilly given the size and age of our windows.

We have to keep our curtains closed at night because if our neighbor’s seven idiot yappy dogs see us pass by our windows they will sit at the fence and bark their dumb faces off for an hour. They hold us hostage in our house because we can’t go to that side of the yard without being barked at. The neighbor on the other side has a yappy chihuahua and will yip when it sees us going out our front door.

I LOVE animals, but I am So.Sick.Of.Being.Barked.At

For Bennett’s birthday “my dad” (He can never figure out how to access the wish lists, so I have his Amazon log in) got him this little toddler alarm clock that lets him know when it is ok to wake up in the morning.

Preschool party. This was just snack. I DID bring cupcakes.

He will go through spurts where he gets up suuuuuuper early and cuts into my work time. And then he’ll do fine and sleep until 6:30 am ish for a few weeks at a time.

So far since getting this alarm clock, he has stayed in his bed until it tells him it is ok to wake up. I have to say he is a lot less grumpy in the morning as a result. And thus I am less stabby.

I switched over to a new email subscriber system this weekend. If you’re on my email list then there should have been no interruption in your service and this post should have plopped into your inbox just like normal. If you had any issues, received duplicate messages or anything, please shoot me an email and my tech team will get it sorted out.

And by “my tech team” I mean me crying in front of emailing marketing youtube videos and googling error codes.

Not on my email list yet? Sign up below and the fancy new system will send you a free ebook! Because you rule. And if you’re thinking that Whole30 meals are boring and tasteless AF, here is an Instagram message I got from long-time reader Amy who was doing a Whole30 this month:

“Your recipes are great. My husband has no clue he is eating so healthy (except for his nightly ice cream), he just likes the food”. Boom.

My friend Mary has had the most incredible journey you could imagine. She went through life-changing bariatric surgery in 2016 and within a year became a certified Spin instructor.

She has a true passion for changing the lives of others through group exercise, with a special mission toward helping children. Especially those kiddos with special needs and autism.

Her goal to open her own fitness studio has been realized today and she opened WOWfit this morning in Schwenksville PA. They offer Pound and HABIT classes and focus on fitness at all ages and stages.

And because I have a ton of dirt on her Mary loves me, she is offering any of my readers their first class free. Just mentioned Sustainable Cooks in the email when you book and boom, free class. I feel like if you put “Sarah is a skank” in the subject line she would love you forever.

I was driving home from an errand on Friday and something got into my head and wouldn’t leave. I felt so called by it that I had Siri do a voice memo while I was driving so that I wouldn’t forget it. Because that is my life these days and I sometimes feel like my brain is made of Swiss cheese.

I think the rise of social media has given us so many unrealistic expectations. Since some of our life is in the public eye, I do my best to show a “warts and all” total picture. But on the chance that someone isn’t paying attention and seeing that, I need to formally declare that 99% of the time I don’t have my shit together.

Like anyone with competing priorities, I fail at all of them each and every day. There is never a part of my life that is balanced (remember my Balance is Bullshit post?) or thriving at the same time as another part. If business stuff is going well, it is because I spent the day ignoring my kids. If my kids are happy, then I wasn’t productive and getting stuff done.

I’ve worked outside the home in corporate, non-profit, with kids, without kids, etc. Working from home has wonderful perks and I’m so grateful for what I do. But I have come to learn that it means there is no line between “work” and “home” for me. I’m always on, always here, and I can’t just turn it off like I have in the past.

All of this to say, I feel like we’re in a period in our lives where we’re churning. The kids are usually grumpy and fighting, I’m short-tempered, and even mild-mannered Troy is on edge. I’m not complaining, but I am sharing it with you so that reality is part of the internet.

And I’ll say that all of my friends are going through this right now too. It just seems to be this vortex of energy suck happening.

When you see a perfect home, perfect family, perfect everything on social media, just remember that is what they want you to see. It’s not real and thus you should never compare yourself to them or judge your worth by their standards.

If there is someone you follow online (even if it is me!) who makes you feel like shit about yourself then unfollow them. Don’t waste your energy on feeling badly about who you are – BECAUSE YOU’RE AWESOME!

As long as you get up every single day and try to improve on the day before, put that in your win column.

:gets off my soap box:

Found on my walk. I’ll never sleep again.

Comment/Review of the Week

This week’s review comes from Jen who made our Paleo Chicken Pot Pie Soup {Whole30, Paleo, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free}.

Oh my! This is a WINNER!!! My 2 year old polished off two bowls, and you know toddlers don’t lie! She even ate the veggies, when normally she is a broth-only kid (my immersion blender is LIFE when it comes to soups these days). Super easy to throw in the crockpot and the house smelled great. Definitely going in the rotation at our house. 

Girl, yes, toddlers are picky AF! I’m happy to hear she ate it and gobbled it up.

On Sustainable Cooks This Week

Whole30 Bacon Brands {Sugar-Free Bacon, Paleo Bacon} – The most in-depth list of Whole30 Bacon Brands on the web! Find out ingredients, tasting notes, and where to buy Whole30 compliant brand bacon (sugar-free bacon and paleo bacon).

A heart made out of bacon on a white board

Dark Chocolate Truffles – Strawberry Truffles {Paleo, Dairy-Free, Vegan} – An easy and decadent melt in your mouth recipe for incredible homemade Dark Chocolate Truffles. These chocolate and strawberry truffles are a paleo, dairy-free and vegan wonder! 

overhead shot of dark chocolate truffles with chocolate chips and dried strawberries

There is no greater way to disappoint your spouse than to suggest the two of you move into the bedroom to takes some photos…

Spicy Sweet Potato Fries {Whole30, Paleo, Vegan} – Learn the three secrets to make perfect crispy sweet fries every single time! These Baked Spicy Sweet Potato Fries are a healthy and delicious Whole30, paleo, or vegan side or snack.

A stack of sweet potato fries topped with salt and parsley

And because it is always fun to see the “behind the scenes” aspect of things, I have to tell you about this little wire fries cage. I realized none of my props would work for the photo I had in mind, and Troy came up with the idea of using leftover hardware cloth from building the chicken coop and some zip ties.

Here is the backside you don’t see the photos.

The Five Most Popular Posts This Week

  1. Homemade Vicks Shower Soothers
  2. Instant Pot Sous Vide Egg Bites Recipe
  3. Paleo Chicken Pot Pie Soup
  4. Whole30 Bacon Brands
  5. Air Fryer French Fries

Hop in the DeLorean

Last year the top post from this week was: Welcome!!! (this was the first post after I launched the rebrand of the blog. New site, new name)

Meal Plan

Looking for someone to do the meal planning for you? I’m partnering with Real Plans to bring you personalized meal plans that fit all dietary needs. Try it yourself for free for 30 days!

I will say the meal plan I made for last week was a colossal failure due to lack of planning and forethought on my part. You’ll see some of the same dishes planned for last week as a result.

Monday:: Whole30 Potato Soup and salad

Tuesday:: Frittata with salad

Wednesday:: Paleo Roasted Chicken, salad, and Whole30 Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes.

Thursday:: Dairy-Free Tomato Soup and salad

Friday:: Popcorn, leftovers, and movie night.

Saturday:: More leftovers

Sunday:: Family dinner

What We Bought This Week

No one took a single photo this week. Blah. But it was a more of a clean out the fridge/freezer/pantry week anyway so nothing too exciting.

I know a lot of you have heard me talk about Butcher Box before and right now they’re offering two filet mignons, free bacon and $10 off your first order for all new customers! If you’re interested in snagging this deal for yourself, click here to make sure you get all the freeeeeeebies!

What are you having this week?




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39 comments on “Scattered Sundays”

  1. You feeling “on” is how someone running your own business always feels. I visit, follow, get emails from you because you are so honest about your life. I enjoy the antics of your boys. I enjoy your recipes. I especially enjoy Scattered Sundays. I think you are a very conscientious person and want to supply people who follow you with a high value experience when visiting you site. You do.

    • I expect that as a business owner, but my friends who are about the same age and are not business owners are feeling it too. I think it’s just a thing right now; a place we’re in our lives. Hoping this too shall pass.

      Thank you for being a reader and for taking the time to comment!

  2. Sorry to hear about your butt.  I’ve got 11 years on you and I threw my back out on Christmas by sleeping.  I just woke up and could barely move!  I was like that for three or four days!  Crazy…

    I think the weather is what has everyone being crabby.  January is the worst for that, in my opinion.  Everyone is coming down from the ‘holiday high’ (possibly with debt), combined with the lack of sunshine makes for grumpiness.  My thought is that things should start getting better as the days get longer.

    It isn’t natural, by any stretch, but I have recently discovered CeraVe lotion (this one: ) and I just love it.  The trick is to use it on slightly damp skin.  The magical ingredient draws moisture to it and if there is no moisture ON your skin it will draw it FROM your skin, leaving you dry ( I read that in a review and have done it faithfully.)  My face has never felt so nice.

    I LOVE your behind-the-scenes pictures! And that alarm clock sounds like a device made BY a parent!  A very, very smart parent.

    • Ha, your poor back! Sounds like Troy at least once a week. He hurts himself sneezing. Did you see a chiropractor?

      Oh, yeah I think January is a crabbiness-inducing month.

      I used CeraVe when I was on Accutane in college. My skin was such a train wreck it is hard to say if it helped or not. I remember it being pretty light and gentle though!

      Yes, the alarm clock is definitely invented by a parent! Bennett slept through him “alarm” yesterday and woke up and stayed in bed for 20 minutes watching his clock and waiting for it to turn green. It was so funny.

      • My daughter swore by Aquaphor when she was on that.  Mostly for her lips.  Dry, dry, dry, dry  lips was the biggest complaint from her.
        I have not seen a chiropractor or anything.  I just waited it out.  It actually worked out pretty well for me (other than the pain) because I spent the few days after Christmas doing almost nothing, snuggled under a heated blanket, playing a video game (both Christmas gifts)!!
        Now that February is here, and we seem to be out of that deep freeze, hopefully everyone’s spirits will lift. Including my own
        Good for Bennett!  I love that he waited for the “go” signal, just like he is supposed to!  We had to put a “real” analogue clock in our daughters’ room (they shared a room at the time) and teach them (mostly the younger one) about the ‘little hand’ and they had to stay QUIETLY in their room, reading or something, until the little hand reached a certain number.  I think it was 7.  Your clock sounds so much, MUCH easier.

      • I tried that too but it seemed nothing would work against that level of dryness. And oh my, the chapped lips. I remember them vividly. And my scalp was so dry too! Between my face, lips, and scalp I looked like I was sloughing off parmesan cheese for four months. So miserable.

        What video game was it? I hope it kept your attention while you recovered.

      • That game STILL has my attention!  It’s Super Mario Odyssey for the Switch.  I also got Donkey Kong Country (I got spoiled) but I can only focus on one game at a time, so I haven’t played that one much.

        My daughter has been off the Accutane for years, but as I recall, her BIGGEST complain was the lips.  I don’t remember her complaining about scalp issues.  He skin is lovely now though.

      • I think Jack got the Super Mario game for Christmas too. How fun!!

  3. Oh do I have a recommendation for the BEST SKIN CARE PRODUCTS! Olive Branch Body Care is hand-crafted in small batches by Joan Johnson right in your neck of the woods in Seattle. This line has won awards for its gentle and effective natural skincare. It is free of parabens, dyes, petroleum, alcohol, artificial fragrances, and artificial flavors and never tested on animals. While it costs more than some things, it is a lot more effective, better for you, better for the earth than any high-priced line I’ve tried. It has helped with my eczema and sensitive dry skin. Her balms and lotions have healed rashes and breakouts for all my family. I love it’s results. And Joan is the real deal. She can answer your questions and help suggest what will work best for you. She provides feee shipping on orders over $50 and she ships immediately so you don’t have to wait to get what you need. Or Seattle folks can pick up locally.  I think you can find it on Amazon too. The line has products for all skin types, including anti-aging, and you can also get quality lip balms (some lightly tinted if you’re not a lipstick kind of gal). I’m effusive because I only use her products anymore, I love it and believe in it. I have used Olive Branch for going on 7 years across three states. Literally, I’ve never been disappointed.

  4. That thing you found on your walk is scary as hell.  Lock your doors and bar the windows, it’s teaming up with the peacocks for the murder of the century.

  5. Check out this link for natural skin care.

  6. Check out this link for natural skin care.

  7. Please share any skin cream advice! Moving to the North East and my California skin doesn’t know what to do. Yogurt & honey masks have helped a bit, and using a bit of jojoba oil to moisturize day and night has helped me, but my skin is still flaky and dry. And my teenage self would like totally for sure die if she knew I was putting oil on my skin!

    • I do a few drops of sweet almond oil and rub it onto my face when it is feeling dry. Jojoba just didn’t work for me and I found it a little heavy.

  8. Hope your butt sprain gets better! I hurt mine once (I’m a runner) and it gravitated to my crotch region and stayed there for months. I even went to physical therapy which was super fun considering the region of pain.
    I was in the crazy cold -55 degree region. We used to say ‘once it gets below zero, it all feels the same’. Nope! Us wisconsonites can handle cold, but that was just too much. It was 20 degrees yesterday (a temp difference of 70 degrees!) and everyone at the grocery store was rocking tshirts, lol! We were basking in the warmth.

  9. I do not take for granted that with my youngest eight years old, life is so much easier than when my kids were little.  Littles are just exhausting.  But Friday morning my oldest and middle’s tween attitude had me screaming like a lunatic by the time we got to school.  Work stress + attitude + gross, gray weather = short fuse.

    Tonight’s meal plan is dinner out because we don’t care about the Super Bowl and restaurants are empty on Super Bowl Sunday!

    Monday:  Costco Kung Pao Chicken meal kit because I am working late and it needs to be easy!
    Tuesday:  Tacos, beans, and Spanish rice
    Wednesday:  Gnocchi with chicken meatballs and homemade sauce
    Thursday:  Chicken Tikka Masala and green beans
    Friday:  Chicken sausages, air fryer potatoes, and salad
    Saturday:  My husband will be putting a pork shoulder on the smoker before going to bed Friday night and it will be smoking all day Saturday.  I’m already looking forward to it!

    • I want to eat at your house; your menu looks delicious. Can you send the kids to grandma and grandpa’s so we can all have a quiet dinner?

      • Sounds like a plan!  I have to admit my grocery store is basically my sous chef, with the made-in-store tortillas and chicken sausages and high quality packaged chicken meatballs and curry sauce!

    • I feel like my short fuse is getting shorter and shorter every day. Deep breaths, right Lisa?

      I haven’t seen that meal kit. Is in the deli section? Sounds yummy!

      Mmmmmmm I love smoked pork so much. Enjoy every bite.