Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Hooray for Tuesday!

Oh, how I love summer!  It's wonderful to be able to go to and from work with the sun still out, and I adore the hot weather (especially since we have AC).  Best of all, it means CSA time!  Today is the first pick-up day for our CSA, and I'm super excited.  CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture, and it works like this: we buy a share from a local farm (we get ours from Grant Family Farms) for the season, and every week we get a huge box of veggies and fruits, as well as a dozen farm-fresh eggs.  Obviously, the produce we get is seasonal, and so the contents of the box vary each week.  This week, we'll probably get a lot of lettuce, other leafy greens like kale and spinach, and some dill.

Because you never know what you're going to get, it's always a fun challenge to figure out what to make with all the veggies.  It can be overwhelming sometimes, especially when you get no fewer than four heads of lettuce each week.  Last year was the first year we participated, and we sometimes had trouble using all the veggies in a timely matter; one can only eat so much salad, you know.  But this year, we know what to expect for the most part, and I have armed myself with lots and lots of recipes that incorporate the veggies we are likely to get.

I'm also especially excited for our CSA this year because it means Chubbs will get to try a wide assortment of vegetables, and he will be another avenue to use up the copious amounts of summer squash (among other things) we will get.  This is because I make all of Chubbs's baby food; I cook a big batch of whatever veggie happens to interest me, blend it up, and then I freeze it in ice-cube trays.  The only foreseeable problem is that we will run out of freezer space.  (Hopefully we are in a new house in the near future, and we can put a big freezer out in our new garage.  So send me some good house-selling vibes.)

I will have to see what our box offers, but I think tonight we will have portobello mushroom burgers with arugula-walnut pesto, and a side salad of spinach with a lemon-garlic dressing.

If you'd like to learn more about community supported agriculture or other ways to get local produce, go to www.localharvest.org.  You can search your area for CSA's, farmers markets, farms, and restaurants using local produce.

Monday, June 15, 2009


We're getting our house ready to put on the market, and all the cleaning involved has made it very apparent to me just how dirty our house was.  You never really think about washing things like baseboards and trim (well, I never think about it).  And I didn't really realize how dirty they were until I started washing them.  There were little spatters from the Tom & Jerry I spilled two Christmases ago and the glass of red wine from three years ago.  Note to self: don't drink and walk up stairs.  But now that three and a half year's worth of dust is gone, all the trim looks really good.

I also just finished scrubbing the bathroom floor - on my hands and knees, with a scrub brush and some 20 Mule Team borax (that's seriously what it's called).  First, and best, of all, I don't need to go to the gym anymore.  And the bathroom actually looks pretty spiffy now.  I mean, there's only so much you can do with old grout, but at least it doesn't look brownish-black anymore.  By the way, borax is awesome; it's not bad for the environment, you can use it to clean pretty much anything, and you can use it in the laundry to give your clothes a little extra cleaning oomph.  I'm not sure where the "20 Mule Team" thing comes from, but I'm pretty sure having a team of 20 mules in my house would not make it very clean.

I have decided that in our new house, we should make sure to do a deep cleaning twice a year, so that we don't end up with alcohol-spattered baseboards.  I am not making any promises, though, and so we are considering buying a house made completely of stainless steel that will clean itself while I walk the dog.

Update: I just went on Wikipedia, and apparently the "20 Mule Team" refers to the twenty mule teams that were used to move borax out of Death Valley, CA to the nearest rail spur between 1883 and 1889.  I love random trivia.

Friday, June 5, 2009

You probably shouldn't stand near us...

Apparently someone somewhere is trying to tell us something.  And to that someone I say, "Ok, Ok.  We get the freaking point!"

Let me tell you a little bit about our day.  Cormac woke up several times last night crying for no apparent reason, so the day started out a little off.  Chris got out of bed early to put the garbage and recycling out for pick-up, only to discover that his scooter had been stolen.  This means that the only form of transportation we have is one car.  And our good friend Richard T. Davis.

So the count stands at no sleep and a stolen scooter.  What else could go wrong, you ask?  Lots.  During breakfast Chris went downstairs to get some paper towels (which we are apparently out of) and found that the basement had flooded.  With sewage.  Again.  We had almost finished refinishing it from the last time it flooded.  And now it will all have to come out again.

And just to add a little insult to injury, the under-the-sink soap holder broke into several pieces.

All of this happened before noon.  I think the day should just be over at this point.

(Richard T. Davis = RTD = the bus)

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Snip Snip

I just got my hair cut.  Short.  Really short.  I mean, it hasn't been this short in 12 or 13 years.  Apparently, about four months after you give birth, your hair starts falling out in massive quantities.  It is somewhat miraculous that I am not bald.  Seriously.  So I decided to cut my losses (quite literally) and chop it all off.  And as long as I was getting rid of it, I figured I might as well donate my hair, so hopefully whoever receives it will appreciate it a lot more than I did.

Just so you know, it looks awesome; Dani did a fabulous job.  And the bonus is I don't think I'm going to have to do anything to it for it to look good down.  Which is nice, because I haven't worn my hair down since Chubbs was born.  But it is short.

It made me realize, though, how much being a mother changes one's perspective on oneself.  Before, I think I probably would have worried about what others would think of my new haircut, whether they would like it.  But now, I could care less.  If the baby is diapered, clothed, and fed, if the diaper bag is packed, and if I have clothes and shoes on, we are good to go.  Although as a general rule I try not to leave the house wearing anything that is covered in dog slobber, baby slobber, or peanut butter.

I've never really lacked self-confidence (maybe I've had a little too much of it...), but I think becoming a mother has changed where my confidence is rooted.  Instead of being tied to more appearance-oriented things, I feel much more intrinsically confident.  I think part of that comes from the fact that as a mother, I am doing something much more significant and far-reaching than anything else I could possible do.  Which isn't to say that other things I do are insignificant.  Being a nurse and caring for very ill people is a valuable thing.  It just doesn't quite compare to the huge responsibility of raising a child.

And that, my friends, is why you see so many mothers out and about in ratty, old t-shirts and sweatpants.  Because we are confident.  Or exhausted, have no clean laundry, been peed on several times already that day, and really need some groceries.  Whatever.