The Homestead Weekly

The Homestead Weekly, 5 July 2020

I won’t lie to you–I treated this whole week like I was on holiday. No packing, minimal cleaning…it was like my whole self revolted against the packing and cleaning and staging frenzy that was last week, and just said, “All I’m okay with this week is reading. And maybe watching a few shows.”

I mean, some important phone calls were made and emails were sent and plans were discussed.

But by and large, we took it easy over here.

And we have no regrets.

In the Kitchen

My body, in addition to just wanting to relax and read, also was wanting me to feed it lots of salads and fresh produce to make up for all the junk it was forced to eat the last couple weeks. The base of said salads was formed using greens from our garden and some chopped romaine from Sam’s Club, and toppings often varied, but chopped sweet bell peppers were always included, as was a cheese of some kind (feta or cheddar), and a more “filling” topping (hard-boiled egg, avocado). We’re often disappointed with store-bought cucumbers, but as our cucumber vines aren’t producing yet, we decided to risk it, and we’ve been extremely impressed with the quality of the 3-pack of cucumbers I (also) got from Sam’s Club. All in all, it’s been a delicious week, and one in which I feel altogether better about my food choices.

I also did my big monthly grocery haul this last week, and I was proud of myself for not buying any sweets or treats of any kind. Sure, we still have stuff that I could use to make treats, but just forcing myself to add that extra bit of effort should hopefully be enough that my body can detox a bit from the past couple weeks.

It was a slightly cheaper grocery haul than normal (around $250, which should last us the majority of the month), mostly because we’re moving on the 31st, and I would rather not have a ton of extra food that needs to be transported. In fact, I might even make myself do a monthly meal plan again or try out meal prep or batch cooking, just so that I can make sure we use up the maximum amount of our food we can before the move.

On the Menu This Last Week: salad in all forms, chicken stir fry over rice (Matt and I both thought the BBQ-sauce base was super weird–not recommended), Mediterranean egg scramble + corn tortillas, grilled chicken for our laidback 4th of July dinner, and this sausage/apple/sweet potato bake that we’re liking more and more each time we have it

In the Yard

Since we did so much the previous week with the yard, there really wasn’t much to do. We pinched off a few of the herbs (cilantro, both varieties of basil) to hopefully prevent them from bolting and encourage bushier growth. We pulled weeds when we noticed them.

But most of all, we kind of just stepped back and drank it in–the snap peas and pole beans that have finally latched onto our makeshift trellis and started racing up it, the tomato plants slowly becoming heavy with blossoms and fruit, the bellflower that is literally so weighed down with blooms that it is tipping over.

July is such a fun time in the garden—you aren’t so weighted down with produce that you feel overwhelmed, but there is enough coming on that every day brings something exciting, whether that’s noticing a flower bloom for the first time (like our peachy-pink hollyhocks in the front bed) or the daily (eager) check of the zucchini plant to see if one has gotten large enough to harvest yet. We picked our first snap peas this week, their sweet crunchiness like the garden version of candy. We also finally identified some of the seedlings that have been growing like crazy over the past several weeks as African daisies. (The night I sowed the flower seeds, I didn’t actually label where I’d put anything, so it’s been a fun little guessing game to see what we think everything is.)

Most evenings, I take a walk about the garden, often with Matt, sometimes alone. And each night, I get preemptively nostalgic for the walks, even while I’m in the middle of them, since I know we’re so close to leaving behind all this evidence of years of hard work and planning.

Blooming this week: bellflower, delphinium, the last of the Asiatic lilies, daylilies (not all of them yet), Shasta daisies (both varieties), snapdragons (oh, how fun it is to see the colors finally reveal themselves!), the rest of the roses, Mexican primrose (still!), Mexican Hat flower, hollyhocks

Harvesting this week: basil, oregano, cilantro, snap peas, lettuce greens

In the Playroom

Matt had Friday off of work for the holiday, but we kept our weekend super low-key since we weren’t comfortable gathering with a whole bunch of people. Friday night our community did a huge fireworks show, which Matt and I both watched from our front yard. We tried to wake up Raven to watch them too (since she’s actually still never seen fireworks because we’re lame parents and stick to bedtimes for the most part), but she was sleeping like a log and didn’t even squint or move the slightest bit when we turned on her bedroom light, tried to sit her up, etc. At that point, we just felt bad trying to wake her up, so we laid her back down and just enjoyed the fireworks with just the two of us.

Saturday we set up the little kiddie pool in the backyard so the kids could splash around and go in and out of it while we grilled some chicken and burgers in the backyard. We used to have a grill night and eat dinner al fresco every Friday night, but we’ve gotten out of the habit since we added Hyrum to the family. I ordered a new gluten-free cookbook (aff link) that has a recipe for hamburgers buns in it, but it hadn’t come yet, so Matt and I just tried out a new recipe for grilled chicken and let the kids have the hamburgers. Compared to other people’s holidays, it was probably pretty mild, but we enjoyed ourselves anyway!

Hyrum has been on a terrible sleeping kick again. This kid, man—it’s like he’ll tease us with several good days and nights and we’ll high five ourselves, thinking he’s finally sleep trained, and then we’ll have a whole slew of days where he just goes on these sleep strikes. Sometimes we’ve felt like we’ve kind of figured out the reasons behind poor sleep, like the fact that we need to feed him solids AND a bottle just before bed, or the fact that he seems to sleep better in long sleeves than in short. But this week, it seems like the reason was because he discovered the sound of his own voice and thought it was funny to babble loudly at five a.m. and do random little shouts, almost as if he were listening for an echo.

I’m REALLY hoping that this next week he’ll start sleeping better again because I’ve noticed that my motivation to pack up the house seems directly proportional to the amount of sleep I get, so…let’s all keep our fingers crossed.

Ah, home…back to its normal, semi-cluttered state 🙂

In the House

Nothing. Glorious week 🙂

In the Soul

I was listening to a vlogger this last week who talked about how she was so tired lately that she hadn’t had energy or time to think deep or profound thoughts.

That’s kind of exactly how I’ve felt.

I’m still waiting for the emotions of the move and all the accompanying stress and change to hit me, but lately, I have just enough energy and emotional reserves to get through each day, and I leave it at that.

I have started stepping away from social media even more lately though, just because I have recognized that it’s once again become more toxic than not for me. I wasn’t on it that much to begin with, but lately it had seemed like every time I did happen to get on for a few minutes, everything was soooo negative and political and just…draining. So I’m really trying to step back and try to replenish my emotional reserves, which are obviously pretty depleted right now.

Hoping that that combined with (hopefully!) more sleep this week will have me feeling a bit more energetic and a bit more like myself in general.

2 Comments on “The Homestead Weekly, 5 July 2020

  1. I’m so glad that you took a week to decompress and unwind! You really needed it after all the stress of getting the house ready!
    Okay, the last picture… I love it and I love how Mathias has his legs STRAIGHT out! LOL Reminds me of Holden when he wants to get down.

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