Saturday, August 25, 2012

Weekly menu

Today's haul:

yellow apples
champagne grapes
Asian pears
Anaheim peppers
Brussels sprouts
rainbow chard
romaine lettuce
iceberg lettuce

Plus I also have some strawberries, mushrooms, mangos, acorn and butternut squash, and canary melon.

Here's the menu.  
And the recipes...

Vanilla pear slow cooker cake (I'm actually using peaches)

Friday, August 24, 2012

The lump in my throat that won't go away

It's taken up residence and won't leave.  The solution is probably to have a good, loud, slobbering, gulping cry, but those sorts of emotions tend to freak my children out.

I don't know what's wrong with me.  I guess it's partly that I don't do well with change, partly that I'm facing the imminent departure of two children (Teffy back to school and Joshua on his mission), partly that the kids are going back to school next week, partly that I'm feeling overwhelmed by financial pressure, and partly that I'm feeling like our house is falling apart around us and we can't seem to get caught up.  And then there's the absolute dearth of any information about the adoption.  I'm just stuck in a rut.

Although I'm not entirely sure how we'd pay for it, I'm considering talking with Curtis about sending Beck to a daycare for two hours a day.  This would mean he'd eat lunch at school with his siblings, but would go to a day care from 1-3, and then I'd pick him up when I pick the other kids up from school.  My primary reason for thinking about this is that very soon (I hope, anyway), we're going to have Thalia home, and she's going to need pretty intensive love/therapy/general looking after.  I have a giant list of things that need to be done around the house, most of which I could do myself, given enough time.  Things like replastering, sanding, priming and painting walls.  Scraping, priming and painting the trim on the house.  Staining our new door trim and kitchen island.  Painting our still as of yet unfinished kitchen cabinets.  I worry that once Thalia arrives, those things will be next to impossible to accomplish on our own, yet we don't have the means to hire any help.

The other thing is that Beck, being the youngest of 12 kids, rather tends to enjoy being around his brothers and sisters.  He and I do fun things together when it's just the two of us, but more often than not, he's bored and checking the front door every five minutes to see if Cora's bus has arrived.

Another reason I'm feeling emotional is because Joshua and his girlfriend had to say goodbye to each other yesterday.  She's headed back to school, and they're both feeling so sad that this is "it."  I know this is the type of thing that gets better with time, but I hate to see my son hurting.  And then there's my Teffy.  I know she's dreading going back to her apartment, her old job, and her school.  I know her heart is hurting, too.  I know she knows that she's an adult and that it's important for her to be independent, but I also know it's hard for her sometimes.

Zoe, on the other hand, seems to be on cloud nine all the time.  She's excited about school, her friends, her cheer squad, and pretty much everything going on in her life.  I wish all my kids could have her confidence and enthusiasm for life (and I wish she had their enthusiasm for getting better grades!)

I don't know - I guess it's just that we have so much going on.  There's a lot to do physically, but we're also mixing our "major life events" in a pretty crazy way.  There aren't too many folks who have older kids flying the coop and still have new ones joining the family.  Leave it to us to do things as differently as possible.  ;o)

I'll be alright as soon as we start to get new routines down.  In the meantime, I have a nice supply of dark chocolate, good books and a big bathtub!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Random stuff

My new favorite tofu is Island Springs extra-firm.  It doesn't break up easily in dishes and it's super yummy.

Joshua's best friend just got his mission call to the Washington DC south mission.  He enters the MTC two weeks after Joshua, so they'll be together a week.  I'm happy for them.

On Saturday, Curtis and I parents and I took Joshua to Billings to go to the temple and to celebrate his birthday.  I knew it was going to be amazing to go to the temple with a grown child for the first time, but it was seriously awesome.  We sat in the celestial room together and talked for a while, and it was overwhelming (in a good way) to be able to share that experience with him.  I am so incredibly proud of that boy and his choices.  It's an honor to be his mom.

After the temple, we shopped a bit and went to Qdoba for lunch.  I think the "festivities" were a bit of a let-down for him and he'd hoped for more excitement on his birthday (he also had to write a talk for church the next day), but he came home and found that Teffy and his girlfriend had planned some surprises for him.  I hope that made up for some of it.

I've been busily working on getting things ready for the kids to start school.  I wish we had one more week because as usual, it seems like I blinked and the summer was over.  Curtis has been helping the kids junk out their rooms and organize their closets, and that's been a huge help.  Hopefully we'll get it all done before next Wednesday.

This weekend is the county fair, and Teffy's going back to Billings on Sunday.  She starts back up at her adult ed program the same day the rest of the kids go back to school.  I think she's dreading it, but we had fun picking her out some new school clothes and supplies.

Next week we have five thousand hair and dentist appointments scheduled.  I guess I'm a procrastinator.

We finally found the winner of the iPad in our Bring Thalia Home fundraiser.  It turns out that she has a younger brother with Down syndrome, and knowing we have that connection made it all the more exciting to give it to her.

Hmm...  What else?

The kitchen hasn't been worked on all summer.  We're still at a standstill.  I hate thinking about it.  I was desperately hoping it would be done before Joshua left on his mission, but now I'm hoping for Christmas.  I'm probably setting myself up for disappointment, though.

I'm still working on selling some stuff on eBay to add to our adoption fund, but it will probably be a couple weeks before I can really get going on it again.  And speaking of adoption, we've heard nothing adoption related for almost two months now.  I can't even get our agency to give us our log-in date (our dossier went over in June.)  I'm not too impressed with this agency so far.  They haven't done anything "bad," but they just don't make an effort to keep people informed or to make occasional contact if only to say, "Hey, we know you're still waiting, but we don't know anything yet."  We had more hand-holding with the independent adoption we did from Haiti!

I can't really think of anything else.  I'm feeling kind of blah right now.  Dread and excitement are battling it out in my mind as we head toward the first day of school.  As soon as we're into it and have new routines going, I'll be good.  Right now I feel like I have no sense of control.  :o/

Weekly menu

I should have entitled this post, "Trying to get back in the saddle."  Our Saturdays have been so busy that I just haven't been able to get this done the past three weekends!  Now that school is about to start back up, it should be easier for me to stay on track with menus.  :o)

So here's the produce I have, most of which is BB stuff, but our garden is really kicking into gear.  We have tons of corn, cucumbers, cherry and globe tomatoes, zucchini and onions.  Unfortunately, someone has been stealing our watermelons, but I guess that's the risk you run when you plant in a community garden.

2 heads cauliflower
4 bunches broccoli
10 large tomatoes
2 bags small tomatoes
3 bags Brussels sprouts
2 heads romaine
2 heads butter lettuce
2 HUGE leeks
2 bunches kale
6 green bell peppers
6 red bell peppers
2 heads garlic
13 onions
6 little acorn squash
2 bags new potatoes
4 butternut squash

6 Asian pears
6 plums
10 white nectarines
5 bunches bananas
4 apples
4 bags grapes
10 pluots
2 quarts strawberries
2 pints blueberries
4 pints raspberries
2 yellow melon

And here are the recipes:

Beer-battered avocado tacos
Green Thai curry (I make variations of this all the time.  This one will have broccoli and cauliflower, plus tofu)
Pasta with roasted red pepper sauce (Once again, cashew or maybe soy cream will stand in for dairy cream)
Vichyssoise (I'll be using veggie broth and cashew cream rather than chicken broth and heavy cream)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

A post about nothing

I got nothin'.

We're two weeks away from school starting.  One week away from the fair.  Two weeks away from our vegan-o-versary (and it will be a year since my last Diet Coke).  Six weeks away from Joshua heading to the MTC.

And it's been two weeks since I've made a menu.  Gasp!  Last week, it was just too hard with our trip to Denver and all that we (I) had to do once we got home.  This week, I didn't do one because I spent all of Saturday cleaning and reorganizing my pantry (oh, how I love doing that!) and then we had a concert to go to that night.  We managed to eat pretty well this week in spite of the lack of planning.  Tonight was tofu scrambles with peppers and mushrooms, pancakes, and a little fakin' bacon.  And best of all, I didn't have to cook it.

I'll do better next week.  Promise.  :o)

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Milwaukee, Wisconsin

He reports to the MTC on October 3rd.  Be still my heart.


We don't know yet where he's going because we're waiting for Curtis and Teffy to get home for lunch, but we'll know soon.  Ack!

Lily brought the mail in, and I could see that she had a big envelope in her hand.  I was busy simultaneously juicing plums and peaches and making oatmeal and my hands were covered in gunk.  I kept saying, "What's that big one?  What's that big one?" while she casually flipped through the pile.  Finally I yelled, "Show me that big one!" and then I started jumping around and screaming like a crazy person.  I'm not sure why, because 20 seconds later, I felt like I was going to cry and barf simultaneously.  I'm good at multitasking like that.  ;o)

Joshua's on pins and needles and can't wait until everyone gets home.  Holy cow.  This is it!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Giveaway ends tomorrow!

A $10 donation gets you two entries. There are nearly 40 prizes including an iPad, Blendtec blender, Kitchenaid mixer, and $200 Amazon card.

Please help us get Thalia home! :)