Garden! Honey laundering! Motivated Moms! Obsessed with bread! New glasses! Hiking!
I have carrots, green onions, broccoli, and red chard seeds planted in my garden. I’ll be planting more of everything, plus lettuce and bulb onions, as space allows. Still growing: Mexican grey squash (I’ve eaten lots of them, raw, when they’re about 3″ long, right before they turn yellow and die); Yoeme purple string beans (tall and mostly green, but appears to be heat-stressed… some blooms… I’m waiting to see if the plants will do better as the weather cools); basil (the only thing that’s really thriving; we eat basil in stuff 4-5x/week now); tomatoes (loads of blooms, but not really vigorous, strong plants… again, waiting until it cools to reassess); hot red chile plants (healthy-looking, but small and no blooms). I’m trying to decide what to do about my ginormous Hopi pumpkin plant. It is literally spilling out of my raised bed… the squash plant is about 10′ x 4′, and it is taking up so much room that could be used for something else. The plant appears to be thriving, with huge, green leaves and dozens of blossoms, and it would be a shame to rip out something so vigorous. But, the pumpkins grow about 2-3″ big and then die, much like my Mexican grey squash. My husband thinks it’s due to the heat and that I should give it some time. I’m trying not to think about all the other, possibly more fruitful veggies I could plant in the space that dumb pumpkin is hogging.
- PLEASE READ this article on honey. Please. Who knew that honey was such a controversial topic?? It is imperative to your safety that you buy honey that is a product of the USA, or at least the western hemisphere. Honey from China — tainted with illegal antibiotics and heavy metals — is saturating the American market, because honey from China is banned in Europe. “Some of the largest and most long-established U.S. honey packers are knowingly buying mislabeled, transshipped or possibly altered honey so they can sell it cheaper than those companies who demand safety, quality and rigorously inspected honey. … Almost 60 percent of what was imported – 123 million pounds – came from Asian countries – traditional laundering points for Chinese honey. This included 45 million pounds from India alone.” HONEY SMUGGLING. Who knew?
Perhaps it’s too early to make a true judgement, but Motivated Moms seems to be working great. It’s oddly helpful to be accountable to a sheet of paper which is waiting for me to tick the boxes. The system is a real change for me, because instead of cleaning the bathroom in one fell swoop, it has you clean the toilet one day, the mirrors another day, the sink the following day, etc. However, breaking each task into 2-to-20 minute segments makes each of them more do-able for me. Plus, I find it difficult to disappear into my bedroom for an hour and a half to clean the master bath from lighting fixtures to tile; I just don’t have that large chunk of time often enough, and I just can’t leave my kids unsupervised for that long. But, pretty much everyone can function on their own if mom is only “gone” for 20 minute segments. It’s just now noon, and I’ve already accomplished more than I would in an entire typical day. Plus, I’ve gone on Facebook, done some gardening, made a loaf of bread, and busted a few heads. Not really “busted”. I’ve applied some mothering. 😉
- Speaking of bread, I’m an obsessed baker again. I’m really motivated to find a recipe that WORKS, simply. I have been making my Best Ever Gluten-Free Flour Mix for the last couple of months, consistently having it on hand to whip up some cupcakes or muffins or pancakes, and that has been wonderful and helpful. Though it is a really versatile mix, I haven’t been able to successfully make sandwich bread with it, and I’m determined to come up with a bread recipe that will work using that flour mix. Simple = sustainable. I want to be able to daily (or nearly so) bake bread, and I know I won’t do it if I have to get out twenty billion ingredients, or remember a complicated process. So far, the results are tasty, but too dense. I’m tinkering with everything tinker-able — amount and kind of liquid, oven vs. breadmaker, amount of sugar and yeast, amount of rising time, etc.
I got new glasses. 🙂
- I went out hiking, early Saturday morning, with two friends, Cristi and Wendy. It was the first time I hiked in about six weeks. The hike wasn’t particularly strenuous, but it was good to just get out and get moving again. What with the heat, a summer Bible study, my garden, our vacation, and simply getting out of the habit, my hiking went by the wayside. I’m re-motivated now. 🙂