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Scattered Sundays

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Last Sunday I took the boys to ride bikes in our church parking lot and the wind started whipping up as soon as we got there. I could feel my nose and face starting to tingle and knew that pollen was infiltrating my system like teeny ninjas.

Before long, I was sneezing my face off. Have you ever sneezed so hard for so long that you start sweating? That’s allergy season for me. Snot and boob sweat.

However, my allergy attack that night highlighted the stark difference between men and women (besides the obvious of course). I was making dinner, and my face was swollen from all the sneezing. Troy said “do you want me to finish that up? You’re practically handicapped at this point”.

Yes, it was sweet, but ladies…I think we’ve all functioned through worse, right? When Bennett was a newborn, I had mastitis and a 104 temp. I still kept a child alive with my body.

I also had vertigo for a week when he was 8 weeks old, and during that time Troy worked a 48-hour shift. It meant I was crawling around on the ground with Bennett in a baby carrier just to function during the day. Sneezing is nothin’.

A woman with seasonal allergies and a swollen face

Waiting on that call to start my modeling career!

This August will be my 10-year blogging anniversary (blogiversary?), and during that entire time, I have been using a 12-year-old Canon Rebel (camera). It’s a very basic camera but it has served me well (once I finally learned how to use it), but it had finally reached its limits.

For one, it doesn’t have video capability. And lately, it has started freezing anytime I want to take two photos in a row. When you’re taking a “pour shot” (like this), you snap about 20-35 photos in a matter of seconds to make sure you’re capturing the BEST part of the pour.

I tried a pour shot recently and my camera actually groaned, sighed, and decided to just turn off and take a nap. I think it even yelled at some kids that were on its lawn. The camera and I were no longer on speaking terms.

I figured 12 years was a good run for a camera, and I finally bit the bullet and upgraded to a much better model. My camera is a huge part of my business and I need it to work for me and not against me. The new camera is like going from a 1997 Dodge Neon to a Tesla. I’m intimidated AF by it, but trying to get it figured out.

It was scary to shell out that kind of money, but I was only able to do it because of you. You show up day in and day out, share my stuff, comment, and support me in various ways. Thanks so much for being here and being awesome.

lilacs

New camera showing off the gorgeous front yard lilacs

We were able to borrow two grown-up bikes this week and it was really fun to go on a family bike ride. Of course, Bennett hurt himself 30 seconds in, Troy got stressed out, and Jack and I were annoyed with the slow pace…but we did it. Once things stopped being dramatic, it was a good time. 

Bennett has a little balance bike (like this) that we have been borrowing from a cousin. As the fourth boy cousin in a gaggle of six boy cousins, nothing he has is new and that is awesome. He does have a peddle bike we bought at Goodwill but he’s so comfortable with the balance bike that he is not interested in moving up to the next level.

The family bike ride highlighted the fact that if we ever want to go more than 30 feet in a minute, we’re going to have to hurry up and get something that works for all of us. We’ve been talking about getting an adult bike for months with a seat in the back, but now we’re set on a little tow-along bike (like this Weeride).

a child on a bike with another child running behind him through tall grass

As many of you know, Jack is obsessed with graphic novels (here’s a list of reader’s favorites). I’ve never had an issue with them but I am getting antsy for him to branch out and read something (anything!) that doesn’t include illustrations. I downloaded Enders Game to Jack’s kindle and casually mentioned I found a book he might like.

He tends to push back on anything I suggest, but I gave him a 20-second overview and he seemed interested enough to at least start it. I did tell him we could watch the movie when he finished it. Well, he’s officially obsessed with the story and plowed through the book in just a two days.

Yeah, there are lots of bad words in it and not all the situations are ideal for an 11-year-old to read about. But, I was an advanced reader and read things WAY before I was ready for them. And I think I turned out ok. Right? Don’t answer that.

He now wants the whole series and I’m so thankful for our library and their ebooks. Free books people, free books! We desperately miss visiting the library in person, but this will have to do for now.

Stupid robot Constance with her stupid robot face put me through my paces this week. I finished up week six yesterday and it was hard but not as deadly as I expected. I first started the Couch to 5k because I could run a mile in a decent(ish) time, but I was dying by the end of it.

I’m not a runner by nature, but I do find I am getting stronger every week. My friend Mary has forced herself to become a runner and keeps trying to convince me to buy a water backpack thingy. Carrying a water bottle is a PITA, but it’s also free. Lol. Maybe I’ll just make Jack run alongside carrying my water bottle.

Here’s the biggest problem I have with running. You’re going to laugh. I cannot figure out what do with my hair. It’s too short for a ponytail and too fine to hold it back with bobby pins. And hat makes my head too sweaty. What’s a girl with a head of turtle fur to do?

a child doing science experiments at a table outside

Hard at work on a vaccine so he can go back to school

Housekeeping

Once a Month Meals is a meal planning service that teaches you how to shop, prep, and cook a month’s worth of freezer meals in one day.

Our family has used them before and I love knocking out a butt-ton of meals in a day. Once a Month Meals is now offering quarterly memberships to give you the opportunity to try it out.

They offer so many various meal plans (traditional, gluten-free, AIP, Low FODMAP, paleo, vegan, and diabetes-friendly amongst others) so there is definitely something here for your family. You can see their meal plan options here.

In the Garden This Week

We did nothing in the garden this week. Nothing! Tomatoes are ready to go into the ground in a week or so. Pro tip: plant your summer crops (tomatoes, peppers, green beans, cucumbers, etc.,) when the weather forecast shows a night-time low of 50 degrees F for seven days in a row. You may need to use row covers if there is a sudden freeze or snow, but 50 degrees for 7 days has never failed me yet.

Our mini drawf apple trees are shedding blossoms, and soon we’ll be seeing baby apples appearing. Can’t wait! The strawberry towers and in-ground plants are loaded with flowers and we’re all counting down the seconds until we’re picking fresh strawberries. After we eat our fill, we freeze them for recipes and smoothies. We just recently used our final freezer bag from last year’s garden.

The real star of the yard right now is our lilac bush that is so big it has become a tree. Growing up, we had two gerbils (Pippy – of “gerbil crotch” fame, and Randy). And when each one eventually passed away, we would bury them in a shoebox and my dad would plant a lilac tree by them.

One is right outside our front porch, and the other is over by the chicken coop. The neighbor’s hedge is so overgrown that the one in the chicken yard is barely limping along. But the one by the door is being super extra this year and putting on quite the show.

What I’m Listening To This Week

My friend Cassie, the blogger behind Cook It Real Good has a podcast that focuses on bringing you shortcuts to success in the kitchen. If you’re a new home cook or want to expand your knowledge, you’ll love this podcast!

What I’m Reading This Week

I downloaded Becoming by Michelle Obama from our library this week. Wow, what a stunning and impressive read so far! Something I didn’t know about this incredible woman: she grew up with a parent who had Multiple Sclerosis, just like me. {Click here to see the list of other books I’ve finished in 2020}

I think I’m about a third of the way through, and I’m hoping soon she will reveal the secret to her incredibly sculpted arms. I’m 99% certain the answer is “push-ups and working out”. Damnit, not interested in that route! 🙂

Reader Spotlight of the Week

Jackie left this five-star review on our Healthy Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins {Pin this recipe}

Hey Sarah – not surprising that these were awesome and my kiddo cannot stop eating them. I may have to hide them. I also didn’t fill the muffin tins very full so I got 1 dozen regular and 2 dozen minis – but they’re already half gone. We had some toasted walnuts, from earlier in the week, so I added them and we also used mini chocolate chips (because I always feel like you’re getting more chocolate with them). Sooo good!

a muffin tray with a fluffy healthy banana chocolate chip muffin in focus

On Sustainable Cooks This Week

Instant Pot Beef Barley SoupInstant Pot Beef Barley Soup is the perfect meal for when you need an easy, and hearty dinner that the whole family will love. This cozy bowl of yum is a game-changer for flexitarian weeknight dinners, and slow cooker instructions are also included. {Pin this recipe}

Easy Air Fryer CornbreadThis incredible Air Fryer Cornbread recipe comes together in just a few minutes with basic pantry staples. Perfect for fast dinners, breakfast or snacks, this from-scratch cornbread is a delicious treat the whole family will love. You’ll also find oven-baking instructions if you don’t have an air fryer. {Pin this recipe}

Confessions – Everyone’s favorite post of the month!

How to Make Simple Beginner QuiltsAn easy to follow step by step tutorial on making simple Beginner Quilts. These quilt projects can be made on any sewing machine or sewn by hand. {Pin this tutorial}

a beautiful quilt made during a tutorial on simple beginner quilts

Puff Pastry Pizza PocketsDitch the processed food and make your own Puff Pastry Pizza Pockets at home! Personalized with your favorite pizza toppings, these homemade hot pockets are ready in minutes and can even be frozen for a quick meal. {Pin this recipe}

A pizza pocket cut in half with gooey mozzarella cheese

The Five Most Popular Posts This Week

Lots of people were chugging our Virgin Mojito this week. Let’s take a look at the other top five posts.

  1. Air Fryer Egg Rolls – as always, non-air fryer instructions are included in the post.  {Pin this recipe}
  2. Instant Pot Garlic Parmesan Rice – as always, non-Instant Pot instructions are included in the post. {Pin this recipe}
  3. Air Fryer Pickles – as always, non-air fryer instructions are included in the post.  {Pin this recipe}
  4. Instant Pot Beef Tips – as always, non-Instant Pot instructions are included in the post. {Pin this recipe}
  5. How to Freeze Spinach  {Pin this tutorial}

Meal Plan

Monday:: Bonus movie night to finally watch The Rise of Skywalker. We kept trying to see it in theaters but one of the boys would get sick, and then they were supposed to stay with my inlaws and THEY got sick! It wasn’t meant to be, so we’re excited to watch it.

Tuesday:: Takeout to support a local small business.

Wednesday:: I bought a big bag of Washington lentils recently, so we’re having our Lentil Soup and garlic bread

Thursday:: Fried Gnocchi and Veggies cause we have absolutely everything in the pantry/freezer.

Friday:: Popcorn, leftovers, and movie night.

Saturday:: Grilled peanut chicken with rice and salad.

Sunday:: Takeout to support a local business/I’m not cooking on Mother’s day, AKA eff that noise

What We Bought This Week

Smith Brother’s Farms (Puget Sound milkman): $47.02

Local farm: $11

 

 

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7 comments on “Scattered Sundays”

  1. Glad that Jack found a new format to love in the reading world. He might like the Maximum Ride series by James Patterson; very action packed and 5 or 6 books in the series!

  2. May I suggest a running headband? https://www.runnersworld.com/gear/a20857690/8-running-headbands-that-never-slip-off/ Not saying you need to buy one, but you could make one. When I was training for a 5K back in 2016, my hair was about your length, and ponytails were not an option either. So I used a Bondi band. I have a ginormous head, so it felt kinda tight on me, but you could custom make one for yourself, I bet, you’re so handy with sewing!

    We’re also looking forward to Rise of Skywalker…mainly so I can make fun of it. (I’m a fan of the old movies, not the new, but my kids put up with me anyway. Also Star Trek> Star Wars any day.)

    • Awww, thanks! I had no idea that was even a thing. Lol.

      I prefer the original episodes but have enjoyed the ones that started coming out in the last few years. I hated episodes 1-3.

      • I think hating episodes 1-3 is pretty much a requirement to be part of the human race. Even my Star Wars-loving kids despise 1-3.

  3. Well done on your fabulous couch to 5k progress! When I had short hair I wore huge headbands from Hygge Bands, or Sweaty Betty – they kept my hair out of my face and as a fun bonus mopped up some of the sweat/ kept my ears warm depending on the season.