I've made a discovery: I can add sautéed vegetables to almost any meal I make, and love them. I have long struggled with finding easy ways to incorporate more veggies into my meals, overcooking them in the oven or undercooking them in the steamer (or vice versa). We eat a lot of salad, and there are endless variations of that (my current favorite is low on the lettuce, high on the cabbage and broccoli, with nuts and cheese), but I do get a little tired of salad every day after a while. So lately, I've been trying out just cutting up a couple of veggies and adding them to whatever I'm cooking on the stove top. I generally prefer cooking in a cast iron skillet on the range because I have the best luck with avoiding both burning and undercooking when I can closely monitor my food. Many of our dinners include either potatoes or meat that is cooked in olive oil in a pan. Others will often include rice or pasta, which, when we eat them as leftovers, are refried in oil or butter. It's easy to add vegetables to all of those things, and make a well-rounded meal without dirtying extra dishes. Most commonly I've been adding peppers, onions, zucchini, broccoli, carrots, or green beans to the pan in the last 5 minutes or so of cooking, although you could use pretty much any vegetable, and cook it to your own taste. Tonight we had chicken thighs, cooked in olive oil, tamari, and with a few garlic cloves, and I added carrots and zucchini. Sweet Pea enjoys cooked vegetables on occasion, but can't quite handle gnawing most of them in their raw form. This way I don't have to make something separate for her, that she might not end up eating (yes, her fickle eating habits have continued although the amount she is eating has definitely increased). Now that it is barbecue season, and our garden is in the early stages of production, I will be experimenting with grilled veggies too.
What's your favorite way to incorporate vegetables into your meals?
I'm in my final week of summer before work as a middle school teacher begins again. This time of year I'm always in a reflective mood. I look back and feel so lucky to have had this time with my kids. We went camping, biking, boating, golfing, and hiking. We celebrated my sister's wedding, we did projects together, watched movies, and just hung out at home. It really was everything that summer is meant to be. There were many events and plans that we canceled due to Covid, but we did all the most important things. We missed friends, but I also reveled in the togetherness with my little family unit. Today, I spent time registering for fall childcare and activities. It's less than usual, but still I can see the pace of our lives picking up. As we move into a season of more busy-ness, more work, and likely more stress, this poem sums up the feelings I'm experiencing.... Vacation End by Leslie Pinckney Hill From the charm of radiant faces, From the days we took to dream
I recently discovered this website when I was trying to figure out average rates for childcare in my local area. I even forwarded the URL to the members of my parenting group. Then, yesterday I got an email from an employee of the website asking if I would mention their giveaway in my blog. Sure! I think this is a good site for information, and for connecting with care providers in your area. So, here it is: Care.com is hosting a giveaway for $12,455—that's how much the average family spends on child care each year. To enter, all you have to do is sign up for a free membership to the site. This is for people who don't even have kids, too. They list services for childcare, pet care, senior care, special needs, tutoring and lessons, and housekeeping ! Probably anyone could use at least one of those services, right? Good luck! Contest ends October 9 .
The weather here has been extra cold over the last week, so my dresser painting project is on hold for now. I had been painting in the garage with a heater, but the heater can't get the temperature high enough for the paint to work well (55 plus) with our freezing temperatures right now. Overall, I have really enjoyed using the paint sprayer, even though I have had a few frustrating times. Like, when I realized that not enough paint was spraying out because the air hole into the canister was clogged, after nearly an hour of working on it. So far, I have put on three thin coats of primer and two thin coats of paint. The original stain color (shown here <-- )underneath is still showing through a little, even with all of that paint, so I have a few more coats to go, I think. The color comes through the most on the parts where I sanded all the way through the top finish, but didn't sand down to bare wood. It seems as if the stain is able to seep up through the paint in these ar