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Scattered Sundays and Meal Plan

On Thursday, Bennett and I went to get new tires. I know, you’re thinking “what is this crazy glamorous life she leads”. We went to Les Schwab which is a tire store that is local only to the Pacific Northwest.

They are the epitome of amazing customer service and will do everything in their power to make your experience positive. They offer free services anytime they are open even if you didn’t buy your tires from them.

Back when we were broke as a joke, they once switched my snow tires over for free even though my tires were from somewhere else. It was supposed to be a $60 service but they waived it because our family has gone there for years. I think their motto is “doing the right thing for 65 years” or something like that. It’s old school good service. And this isn’t sponsored in any way.

But I have to tell you that 10 minutes into sitting in the waiting room, I was ready to leave and jump in front of a bus. Why? They were playing Hallmark Christmas movies.

In the 40 minutes we were there I’m pretty sure I snorted, scoffed, and said “wait, seriously? No, seriously?” about 8,721 times. I am definitely not their target audience.

We have a poll going over on Facebook where battle lines are being drawn over how other people feel about Hallmark Christmas movies. Feel free to pop over and vote!

We’re switching up the boy’s rooms next week. I’m all for keeping kids in their cribs as long as possible. It’s definitely time for Bennett to have more space (sooooo many stuffed animals) and Jack would be well-served by a bigger bed.

To save time and money, we’re just having the boys swap rooms. No moving furniture! Bennett has a crib and a double bed in his room already and the crib will be handed down to my cousin who is due in February.

So, we’ll be swapping clothes, toys, decorations, and books and that’s about it. It’s also a great excuse to do a “stuff” purge before the holidays. I do so love hauling bags off to the thrift store and getting junk out of house!

That is why I make reusable gift wrap. I cannot wrap a present to save my life. Both my mother-in-law and sister-in-law asked if Bennett wrapped it. Brats.

I’ve been working late each night this week and have been kept company by the lovely Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (season 2) on Amazon. All the coats!

It’s funny because I watched the first season while working super late this time last year on my blog’s redesign. I hope to be well-rested by the time season 3 is released!

I’ve been listening to a new fascinating podcast called The Pope’s Long Con. It is about a “preacher” turned state representative in Kentucky who is a big ol’ liar and tells some amazingly fabricated stories. He refers to himself as the pope; this is not a podcast about any particular religion.

If you loved the book Pillars of the Earth, there is a third book in the series called A Column of Fire that I fell onto this week. I used to read so many books a year because I would read during breaks and lunch at work. But now, you know, self-employment means more work when I can and less time for reading.

It has been lovely to find something new and be able to pop onto the kindle app on my phone to read it in snippets when I can. I got the ebook from my library and I hope I can finish it before the loan period is up, but Ken Follet books are always so long.

You can tell that tree cutting is serious business because Troy is rocking his Carhartts.

Jack was sick at the end of the week and it seemed to be a mix of a really bad head cold and the stomach flu. At one point we were in the car and he said he was going to puke. I quickly tossed him one of the many plastic puke bags I lifted from the ER three years ago.

Longtime readers of this blog know that we went through a pretty stressful health mystery with Jack right before Bennett was born. If you want the long version read this post. Short version: he had an intestinal issue called intussusception which is where your intestines basically telescope or fold into a section next to it. Yeah, it’s as awful as it sounds.

Trying to diagnose his intussusception involved tons of doctor’s appointments, blood work, ultrasounds, and finally a hospital stay at a local children’s hospital. It is incredibly painful when you’re having an attack, and the sound Jack would make during an episode is seared into our brains for life.

Once you have intussusception you are more prone to have it happen again. With having the stomach flu we’re always on high alert for things to turn into something bigger. We were in the car on Friday and Jack started making his very specific “I’m going to die” sound.

Just hearing that sound made my butthole pucker so tightly I could have cracked a walnut. I had to focus all my energy into not immediately dissolving into freak out mode. Jack is a pretty anxious kid and I knew I had to be calm or he would immediately jump from a 7 to a 10 on the freak out scale.

The episode only lasted a minute, but Bennett got scared and started crying during it which didn’t help. His favorite person in the world and his biggest hero was in pain and he was having none of it.

Jack had been awake since 3 am and ended up passing out in the car. I wasn’t saying anything but I heard Bennett start shushing me and turned around to see Jack asleep. Finally. Don’t worry, I took this when we were in a parking lot.

That book on his lap is part of this series he LOVES called Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales. If you have graphic novel lovers in your life, this series is so good!

His stomach has appeared to calm down a bit but we’re still on alert for signs it turning into something bigger. Thanks to experience, I have a “go” bag packed with the Kindle, phone chargers, snacks, and a water bottle for a potential trip to the ER.

Comment/Review of the Week

This week’s five-star review comes from Molly who was reviewing Healthy Orange Chicken (Whole30, Paleo, Instant Pot):

Making this recipe is worth it just so that you try the baking soda. Sounded far fetched but the chicken came out nicely tender. I loved the seasoning and made it a little spicier. It smells super sweet but doesn’t taste too sweet. I added some veggies that were precut stir-fry assortment from the grocery store. Adding them at the time the sauce was thickened left them tender-crisp. 

Love the idea of adding the veggies, Molly! And for anyone wondering what the baking soda comment is about, the recipe has you coat chopped chicken in baking soda. You let it sit for 15 minutes and then rinse it off and cook. The results are incredible and the texture of the chicken is amazing!

It can totally be done in advance so if you meal prep, definitely add Healthy Orange Chicken to your rotation. {Pin it}

On Sustainable Cooks This Week

16 Handmade Gifts That People Will Actually Want – If you’re looking for unique and creative gifts, you’ll love these 16 Handmade Gift Ideas That People Will Actually Want! Get 16 affordable DIY gifts for women, men, coworkers, friends, or neighbors. {Pin it}

5 photos showing handmade gift ideas

Cinnamon Pancakes {Snooze Eatery Copycat} – This easy, delicious recipe for Cinnamon Pancakes is made entirely from scratch. Drizzled with homemade cinnamon syrup, you’ll flip for how good this Snooze Eatery copycat recipe is. {Pin it}

a plate of cinnamon pancakes with a cinnamon stick and a pitcher of cinnamon syrup

18 Make Ahead Christmas Morning Breakfasts – 18 of the most delicious Make Ahead Christmas Morning Breakfasts ever! 18 easy ideas for overnight breakfast casseroles, healthy dishes, and sweet treats. {Pin it}

five photos of make ahead christmas breakfasts

Healthy Tea Popsicles For Sore Throats – This simple recipe for Healthy Tea Popsicles For Sore Throats is a delicious natural remedy for kids and adults. These tasty sore throat popsicles will have everyone in the family feeling better in a flash. {Pin it}

red healthy tea popsicles for sore throats and fruit on a tray of ice cubes

The irony of this post was two days after the photos were taken, Jack came down with the stomach flu. In hindsight, I should have seen that coming. Look at that poor kiddo’s red eyes and nose.

Two kids holding healthy tea popsicles for sore throats and smiling

And then Bennett came down with a case of the blurs. The good news is he was hired to be on the next TOOL and Nine Inch Nails album cover.

The Five Most Popular Posts This Week

  1. Eco-Friendly Gift Guide {Pin it}
  2. Gift Guide For the Home Cook {Pin it}
  3. Homemade Vicks Soother Tablets {Pin it}
  4. The Ultimate Instant Pot Beef Stew {Pin it}
  5. 16 Handmade Gifts Ideas That People Will Actually Want {Pin it}

Hop in the DeLorean

Last year the top post from this week was: How to Make Chapstick (Natural Lip Balm) {Pin it}

Meal Plan

Looking for a meal plan that pulls all the recipes and lists together for you? I’m now teaming up with Once a Month Meals post to help my readers accomplish more batch and freezer cooking. Make 30 meals for the freezer in 1 day!

They offer meal plans for traditional, vegan/vegetarian, AIP, paleo, Whole30, vegan, gluten-free and so on and so on. If you have a way of eating, they have recipes for you! You can check out their awesome program on their site. Or, get a gift card for someone in your life who may need a hand with their meal prep game.

Monday:: Gluten-Free Tomato Soup, salad, and biscuits

Tuesday:: Instant Pot Tortilla Soup With Rice

Wednesday:: Frittata and fruit

Thursday:: Chicken burgers, salad, and roasted veggies.

Friday:: Date night. Third attempt; fingers crossed.

Saturday:: Christmas with my side of the family. Following up with our new Thanksgiving tradition (Appsgiving) and having a taco bar for our Christmas. It needs a catchy name. Any suggestions? Tacomas?

Sunday:: Popcorn, leftovers, and movie night.


What are you having this week?

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19 comments on “Scattered Sundays and Meal Plan”

  1. Feliztavus should be your taco bar holiday name.

  2. My mom also had intussusception, and she also found out about having it at Christmas time, must have been about 8 ish years ago at this point, and they ended up doing surgery on Christmas Eve to remove the portion of her intestine that was causing the problem. Same thing for her – every stomach bug or issue ever since has been an immediate “is this leading up to another episode?” She’s only had one more ER visit since then, but it’s a word that’s now seared into my vocabulary (and no one else ever knows what it is). I’m so sorry poor Jack has to go through this at such a young age, and I congratulate you on keeping it together for his sake (that’s not a skill I’m good at lol). Sending lots of positive vibes for a healthy Christmas and New Year’s for all of you!

    • Bless your poor momma for dealing with that!! And you’re so right, NO ONE knows what in the heck you’re talking about when you mention it. The place where Jack’s was occurring actually would have been made worse by surgery so that was never an option. Which I found super odd.

      Does your mom take a daily probiotic? That was recommended by Jack’s GI, so he takes a daily gummy during normal times. When he is sick he takes a powdered probiotic that he hates but it is the strongest over the counter brand and strongly encouraged by his GI. It’s called Florastor. You can get it on Amazon or I know Walgreens has it. It isn’t cheap so we reserve it for the days he isn’t well.

      • Hmm, I’m not sure if she takes a probiotic or not – she takes so many vitamins/supplements that I can’t keep track! But I will recommend that to her if she’s not already on one.

        That’s so crazy surgery would have made his case worse?? Then again, at least he didn’t have to go through that – my mom’s scar is huge, although in her case I guess everything was sort of extreme. The part that had telescoped in on itself had actually started to die, so they had to take out more than they even anticipated.

        I feel like we need an intussusception family support group lol

      • I’ll get the details wrong but I *think* the issue was that his small and large intestine were telescoping right where they met. Whereas most people have the occurrence in the middle of either the small or large. I’m glad your mom got the help she needed because it appears to be super hard to diagnose.

        Our support group can be called “Surviving Something No One Really Knows About”!

  3. My daughter and I love Marvelous Mrs. Masiel. Such a great show.

  4. Love me some Ken Follett. Woops, I think you and I have had this convo here before, preggers, balancing books on our bellies. Hugs on the Jack/belly situation. You are so smart with the Go Bag. Kudos to you! Yeah…HM movies….they’re kinda like cotton candy…You ain’t expectin’ Shakespeare LMAO. You gotta disengage the brain and just enjoy the sets and the fact that these young career women are living in $2m apts. in large Canadian cities until they meet Mr. I-Didn’t-Realize-He’s-Mr.-Right and agree to trash their careers by living in small towns with no hope for employment ‘but he’s sooooo cute.”

    • We sure have Melissa! Pregnancy insomnia is a powerful literary motivator.

      I feel like in my HCM expertise (all 40 minutes of it), there is always also a sassy best friend or an older/wiser advisor.

  5. I’m sorry Jack is feeling now good. Sending healing vibes!
    I’m so glad we don’t have cable this time of year.
    I still LOVE Bennett’s pjs.

    • I’m always thrilled we don’t have cable. LOL.

      Those jammies are the product of being the youngest cousin on one side. But they fit all his jammy requirements – tapered leg (hates them riding up), long sleeves, and comfy.

  6. I can’t believe how tall Jack is next to Troy!  I’ve been following you since he was in preschool.  My Troy is currently deployed with the Marine Corps in Okinawa til January then floating on a mobile ship in the Middle East.  I hope Jacks stomach stuff is just the flu and you all have the best holiday you can without your mom.   

    • He is pretty tall, but it’s also probably just the angle of the photo and/or the hat. He’s maybe 11 inches shorter than Troy.

      Good luck and God bless your Troy!

  7. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel has become one of my all time favorite shows….and yes, the coats! All the clothed ate absolutely gorgeous and I think “oh we should totally go back to those styles! “….and then I think about the girdles needed to pull those styles off and I’m out!

    • Man, I’m so mixed about the girdles. On one hand, I’m a feminist who thinks you should wear what you want and feel most comfortable in. But holy cow that shapewear was around for a reason; clothes look outstanding!!!