Saturday: I came into this weekend with absolutely no meal plans at all. I also came into this weekend very tired and determined not to get worked up about meals. John wanted eggs, I wanted bagels, we had both.
Katie stopped by with Caleb. Here to cut her dad's hair but also to visit as well. Caleb was really tired. Kate said he slept until 10:30 that morning and he slept a bit over an hour here. When he woke he kept yawning and yawning and laying his head on the floor or bed or someone's shoulder. Poor baby. Schedule changes are hard at any age!
Katie ate some of the leftover Bbq Chicken Pizza. John and I had BLTs.
After she cut her dad's home she went home. I was so weary that I could have happily laid down and slept myself but I didn't. I ought to have done.
Supper was frozen entree from the freezer. Glad to see the backside of that one.
Sunday: We woke early, a bit before 7am, and decided we'd try for the early service at church. Yes, we were able to go back today and it was pretty awesome. I guess people were eager to come back because that early service had plenty of people. There was room to leave between family groups, etc., but overall a good many people showed up.
John offered to buy lunch. I suggested we go to the local grocery and pick up a loaf of bread. John's swung back around to not eating my homemade bread much so I'll slow down on baking it once more and reserve it for our Shabat loaf.
I spent more than I'd planned but I found toilet paper and paper towel. Mama is low on both again. I bought an extra for anyone else in the family that might be short. I bought steaks for $3 each that were marked for clearance. We bought a flat of eggs. I haven't had eggs in a few weeks from the chickens over the field so I'll go back to buying them. These were a fairly good deal but I really need to price eggs in various places to insure we're getting the best deal.
I washed sheets and towels, ran a load of dishes and cleared up various little messes. I didn't do a whole lot today because I still felt pretty tired overall, but I got enough done that the house looked better and a little fresher.
For supper, I pan-fried two of the steaks since they were thin and heated up a baked potato casserole (same as hash brown but I used diced baked potatoes) and steamed broccoli. We finished off the peach cobbler I'd made Saturday morning.
Bess came over bearing gifts of produce from a botched produce order. I got avocados, limes, oranges, broccoli and an acorn squash. She went home with some rosemary stems I'd rooted, some basil plants that had done very well indeed, a bag of vegetable scraps for the chickens, some watermelon and peaches for their household.
Monday: Funny how things can be miscommunicated without anyone saying a word. Last night after cooking steaks, I washed the frying pan and put it on the stove to dry before putting it away. Well I didn't put it away. This morning after I got up and while I was having coffee, John came into the kitchen and began making a big breakfast which honestly? Last thing I wanted this morning. However, he'd chopped potatoes and onion and cracked eggs and had bread in the toaster, so I ate a very.big.breakfast commenced being made. He said to me at the table, "I saw that you had the frying pan on the stove so I figured you wanted me to fry eggs..." Oh gracious! lol I'd actually planned not to eat because I wanted to work outdoors this morning and I knew a full tummy would make it harder to do that work which involved lots of bending. And there you are. Innocent enough tasks can create miscommunications...Is it any wonder that we often fall into arguments over a misused phrase or innocent enough remark if the appearance of a frying pan on a burner where it was set to dry can create a morning thrown right off it's plan?
So after my really big breakfast I forced myself outdoors to work in the yard anyway. I planted the gladiola korms I could find. Two. I found two. and one grape hyacinth and one daffodil and so I planted all four bulbs. Not many, but they are planted.
I swept up all the limbs and twigs from about the base and the ground surrounding the Faith tree. That was a bigger job than planned. I weeded a few spots in the corner flower bed but I can see that flower bed, that Maddie simply will not let alone, is quickly turning to a lawn after all the struggle I've had this year to clear it up. Ugh.
I used the blower to clean the patio and the front porch. And then I went to work on making that front porch look nicer. The Kolanchoe and Christmas cactus both need the indirect sunlight they'll get on the front porch in order to rebloom. I painted the nursery pots the kolanchoe were in and hung them on the gate that sits on the front porch. I cleaned tables, sorted out cushions, arranged chairs and plants and tried to make it look welcoming and nice. I was fairly satisfied with my efforts and all that outdoors time took a bit over two hours.
When I came indoors, I set out foods to prep for the week ahead. I'd meant to just start some rice cooking and then go shower, but I got very involved in the process of working ahead and reasoned that a shower after would be best. I finally quit out of sheer tiredness with nothing but supper for tonight completed and three or four other meals barely started. I went to shower and then John was done with his jobs.
He'd gone out to trim a few branches and then he began to mow the lawn which wasn't even mentioned as his plan but it did need it and it all looks much nicer now.
I stayed full from our big breakfast and opted to have peanut butter saltines for my 'lunch'. John ate the last of the pizza from Thursday night. After he'd showered and cleaned up we went down to pick up his pay check from EMS. We'd hoped by going down later that the bank would have cleared out a bit but it was both first of the month and payday for the county and the drive thru had long lines for ATM, tube and window. The bank has not yet reopened their lobby.
John wanted to avoid a rather tedious ride home and opted to take another route. I was all for it since I had hoped to pick up Caleb early but not so much earlier than usual that it would throw everyone off their schedule at the nursery. We arrived about twenty minutes early but they had him ready to go. When we got to his home I put him in the bouncer and he jumped and rocked.
Finally we came home. I threw our supper together since it was a burrito bowl tonight (a glorified salad, really). This salad came out a little bland. I think I needed salt, I do truly and quite possibly a good squeeze of lime. I'd rinsed corn and black beans and had brown rice in the mix as well but it all just tasted flat. The meat however, was plenty spicy. It was the rest of it that just needed a little something extra and it wasn't there.
I only remembered I needed to clear up dishes after our meal when I went into the kitchen around 7:30 to make John one last cup of coffee. Glad I offered to do that or I'd have been unpleasantly surprised in the morning!
Tuesday: My bedside clock is not working. I need another 'new' one. I prefer a good vintage clock but this one has only been with me for four months and already has stopped keeping anything near correct time. However, I forget this every morning. So I wake and the clock reads 7:45 and I think I'm doing pretty good waking so early. It was almost 9am when I looked at the clock in the kitchen and that was only after John came to the kitchen to talk when I sat down with my coffee. I don't DO conversation before coffee y'all, so I was a bit surprised.
He wanted to go clean up Katie's back and driveway side yards and I said "Oh ok...I'll just stay home..." "No, I want you with me." SIGH. I had plans to finish up those meals for the week but I agreed to pack up my tea, a protein bar and my book and go with him. I also picked up a citronella candle because Katie's side yard is notorious for mosquitoes and they love biting me.
So I sat with my hot tea in the car reading my book. I watched a butterfly flutter across the yard and watched a pair of Blue Jays sitting in the Gingko tree. I dreamed of what I'd love to do to the outside of the house in cleaning it up. Honestly I'd like to pull every single overgrown shrub out and completely re-landscape it. Katie has painted the front door a pretty teal color and I wish the shutters could be a darker shade of that...Well between my book and my dream transformation of the house and yard I passed the time it took John to clear up the side and back yard.
It was mighty warm out there. The morning temperatures are quickly running in the low 80's but we are still hanging in at barely 90F for our highs each day.
When we came home, I prepared lunch. This time of year, it is often more prudent to fry French Fries rather than oven bake them. It takes roughly the same amount of cooking time but the difference in how baking heats the kitchen and how much less heat the stove top produces is remarkable. I do not have a deep fryer. I use a deep saucepan to fry and I do this only about once a month if that this time of year.
While fries were cooking and nuggets were baking in the toaster oven, I mixed up the meatloaf that I didn't finish mixing yesterday. I made a cheese sauce and finished off the broccoli rice casserole. I mixed rice with the sausage and onion mixture for stuffing the acorn squash after I set aside a 1/2 cup of sausage mix for pizzas one night this week. It was too late in the day to roast a chicken, but as I plan to rise early in the morning for Josh's school day I will roast it then. At that time I will also try to see what else I might prep ahead. In the meantime, I feel I've a good start on the week's evening meals and will now plan out lunches and breakfasts for the rest of the week. Next week I hope to be more on top of this before the week gets well underway and it is well underway at this point.
Wednesday: No chicken in the oven today though I did rise a bit earlier. Three mornings running my morning/day plans have been pushed off. I give up.
Josh over for school early today. He had an appointment this day at noon or so and Bess called to say he'd be here earlier than usual, minutes after I started to sip my coffee. We were only just wolfing down our simple and quick breakfast when he came in the back door.
School commenced with lots of arguments between us today. I finally had to stop myself being super frustrated and spoke to him quietly as I could, since arguing loudly with him was obviously not getting us anywhere. Josh is smart and quick and works well, but he has one fault. He gets very frustrated if he makes a mistake. I'm trying to teach him that mistakes happen. Every one makes them. All we can do is correct our mistake and move on. We can't just get mad and quit.
Isaac came over to visit when Josh got picked up. Josh had a doctor visit ahead of him (allergist) but Isaac came for a play date. I've missed having him come to visit. Josh kept asking if he couldn't just stay and in light of what he was in for today with testing I'd much rather have had him here, too, but that's just the way it is at times. We do what we must.
Isaac had a grand time and played hard for a couple of hours then put a pillow on the floor, curled up under John's afghan and watched Baby Grandpa and PJMask videos. Bess walked over with Millie who flashed her dimples at us and stared at Grandpa and visited for a bit then took the children home to go to bed.
I've been trying to catch up with myself for the past two weeks but I guess the week caught up with me. When Bess and the children left, I closed my eyes for a moment and woke up an hour later. At that point it was time to get myself gathered together to go get Caleb. John planned to go along today and needed to load the car with mowing equipment.
Supper was an after thought tonight. I took the last two BBQ chicken breast fillets and the last of the Twice Baked Potato Casserole from the freezer before we left and sat them on the counter to thaw before we left to pick up Caleb. Tonight I needed to stay later with Caleb. This is about to be the normal routine. I'll be with him about an hour every evening until Katie can get home. I need to rethink our supper preparations entirely. In time I'll fall into a routine that will work for us once more.
Thursday: More and more of late I find I'm sleeping later in the mornings when I know my morning is free. Often by noon I feel a nap is in order as well. I don't know just why I'm so very tired but I'm giving in to it for a bit. Today not only was I up late, I took a light dozing nap mid morning and mid afternoon, I put on my nightie, pulled up the blanket and went right back to sleep for another 45 minute nap. I still felt tired but coffee got me going after the third try.
Because I rose so very late this morning, I asked John his plans and finding he had none, suggested we have cold cereal for breakfast. If he's any plans to work outdoors or to lift things etc, he often gets indigestion from cereal but on a morning when nothing is planned, we'll indulge. This also prompted me to remove a gallon of milk from the freezer to thaw.
I puttered about and started a load of dishes, made the bed, fed the pets then decided I'd shower and shave. As I stepped from the shower, John stepped into the bedroom and said through the bathroom door, "The boys are coming..." I could almost immediately hear Josh shouting outdoors and bouncing steps coming across the porch. I hurried into the bedroom and locked the door behind John because while Josh has learned to knock before entering, he's not yet learned to wait.
Sure enough he knocked and said through the door "We came to say Good Morning...We're not staying!" I hurried with my task.
When I'd dressed and came out of my room, I found not two little boys but FOUR. I recognized the extra two but didn't know they were expected today. The boys are sons of Bess' best friend from her former home and Josh's best friend, Johnny. Johnny's little brother and Isaac came along, as well. John had jumped immediately into Grampa mode and doled out bubble gum, Dum Dum lollies, and Gatorade to any willing to have some.
Isaac was loathe to return home with the young folks and sat on my lap to tell me so. I urged him to go since they are spending the night tonight. He went off very reluctantly, but shortly I saw him coming back on his own, lol. When he was told he'd need to go home again, he wailed and cried, and lamented. He stubbornly refused to put on his shoes. He sat on the steps under the pecan tree and crossed his arms to sulk. But the boys had returned in force to gather him up as part of themselves and go home.
Before the boys left the second time around the UPS man pulled up and the dog barked and the boys milled over the porch and shouted at Isaac and at John and the drive and my head spun. Once I got Isaac convinced again that he'd be back tonight and sent home with them a second time and Maddie fed biscuits for being such a good girl and barking at the UPS man, I felt it was safe to leave John and the UPS driver to their conversation.
A few minutes later, while John was opening his package, Bess showed up looking for Josh. She apologized for their visiting without warning and said "Josh said he just wanted to show them Grampa and Gramma," and I told her his first words to me had been "We aren't staying we're just saying 'Hello'. " We told her he had gone back home, so she turned and went back then texted she'd finally gathered all four boys long enough to get a head count. What a fun day it must have been at her house this morning.
I headed out a little bit earlier than I needed to pick up Caleb. I wanted a chance to run into Dollar General. I was on a mission to find a specifically described item for a certain about to be six year old boy's birthday gift. I didn't find the item he said he wanted but I liked the item I found a LOT and hope he will, too. I also looked for more garden/flower seeds but none to be had. I am so frustrated with shopping locally at the DG.
I went to pick up Caleb and took him home. I have one more day at this schedule and then Monday I'll switch to staying with him every evening until Katie is in from work. This will change our schedule here at home a lot and will take some adjustments to figure out where and how we'll adapt.
I hurried home and knew I had to make supper on the fly since I still hadn't gotten my chicken roasted...sigh. I decided to make breakfast for supper. I was cooking hash browns and setting up eggs to scramble when Sam showed up with the two little boys. They were spending the night with us, so that Bess could take Sam to the airport tomorrow.
John and I aged three years when Isaac, while I was reading a good night story, decided to play with the old Singer sewing machine. He managed to catch his finger between the two wheels that operate the thing and scared snot out of us both. He didn't cry, just whimpered but when I realized how stuck it was, I called John in and when John got tears in his eyes while trying to loose the finger, Isaac relaxed his hand, snatched his finger free and began to wail. Oh gracious!
Later both boys wanted me to call their dad so they could say goodnight. I called Bess, who was dealing with a wailing princess (6-9 every evening she said, like clockwork). The boys told her goodnight but when they said goodnight to Sam, Isaac started wailing again. I hung up the phone pretty hastily!
Usually the boys take a long time to settle down but they were good and tired from their day and the drama of the evening, they went right to sleep.
Friday: 6:20am this morning the boys were up. I heard the whispers and slipped from bed. When I turned to reach for my clothes, Isaac was standing in the door. I got tickled when Josh said, "She's gotta get dressed Isaac. C'mon! You can't look!" I explained to Josh I planned to dress in the bathroom with the door shut, thank you.
I demanded coffee before the boys tackled me with their hunger this morning. I must say they were obliging enough about that. Then they helped me make pancakes, scrambled eggs, sausage for us and bacon for the boys. Josh is so funny about pancakes. When he eats them here he wants nothing on them but lemon juice, fresh squeezed, over the top. To him that is gourmet food!
I got bread started early this morning, but the chicken didn't go into the oven until after the boys left to go home. It heated up the house something fierce but I wanted to get that chicken cooked. I've had second thoughts however, about making that pizza for supper this evening (reserving the chicken for the weekend). It's not worth it! I'll run over and pick up a Submarine Sandwich after I drop Caleb off. That will suit John just fine and me, too.
Now is it mid-afternoon. I've made two meals and baked bread and a roast chicken and Jello is in the fridge. The dishes have been done four or five times over, the house picked up at least three times and I've given myself half a pedicure (fresh polish but no further treatment). I think I'm going to sip my hot coffee and read my emails. The week isn't exactly over but it's pretty near done.
I'm sorry to say I haven't got anything Worth Sharing this week at all. I tried and tried but I just couldn't bring up anything at all that seemed right or would be welcomed. I hope you have a pleasant weekend and that the week ahead is a sight better all around than what we've had!
(C) Terri Cheney