Menu for the week of 7/8

We will be out at sports three nights this week, so I’m planning accordingly. We will eat an hour earlier (5pm) on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Sun- salmon, red potatoes, green beans, salad

M – BLTs / tomato and cheese sandwiches, salad

T – steak fajita bowls with peppers, brown rice, salsa and avocado

W – egg roll in a bowl / hot dogs

Th – Instant Pot ziti and meatballs, salad

F – grilled chicken shawarma, brown rice, broccoli and salad

Sat – frittata and salad

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Apricot Jam

I was so excited to make a small batch of apricot jam for the first time. I used the recipe from the National Center for Home Food Preservation, since I know it’s a safe source for recipes backed by tons of scientific testing. These jars are destined to fill some Christmas cookies this year! Maybe I’ll try these Finnish Stars, but I’ll probably just make our family favorite apricot cookies.

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Plans and Menu for the week of 6/25

It’s the first full week of summer vacation! My goals for this week are to catch up on housework that’s fallen behind in the final weeks of school, play with the kids, can strawberry jam and keep working on my coursework. I haven’t blogged about it, but I’ve gone back to school to take some grad level classes in physics and earth science. I already have my masters but I love learning science! Anyway, here’s my plan for the week in terms of catching up on housework. I’ll do a little bit each day, in addition to daily stuff like dishes, running laundry and cooking. I like having a daily focus, and will try to get in a set schedule for the summer once I catch up a bit.

M- work in garden, laundry day, pick up kitchen, pick up mud room, grocery delivery

T- clean bathrooms

W- garden day

Th- clean office

F- vacuum upstairs

S- wash bedding (weather permitting)

S- laundry day

And here’s the supper menu for the week:

M- salmon, red potatoes, corn on the cob, salad

T- flank steak fajita bowls

W- going to a friend’s house and bringing pasta salad, broccoli salad and brownies

Th- grilled chicken, sweet potatoes, , zucchini, salad

F- baked ziti, salad

Sat- heading to an engagement party for my cousin

Sun- crock pot pulled pork, baked potatoes, salad

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Weekly Menu

M- burgers, pasta salad, roasted veggies (bunless veggie burger for me)

T- salmon, rice, green beans, salad

W- picnic sandwiches at baseball- tuna salad

Th- spaghetti and meatballs, garlic bread, salad

F- picnic sandwiches at baseball- chicken salad

S- pork chops, potatoes, salad

Sun- BBQ chicken, macaroni and cheese, salad

Mon- hot dogs, onion rings, salad, bunless veggie burger for Mom

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Three Horse Hitch

Sharing my photo and the story that I wrote to go with it, in honor of the beautiful wedding procession today!

Three horse hitch, 1998

I took this photo for my photography class in the fall of my senior year. Back then, I spent all day Saturday and Sunday at the farm, as I had since I was a small child. I did everything- put pumpkins in rows, waited on customers, stocked the big pile of sweet corn. By senior year I spent all day in the kitchen baking apple and pumpkin pies.

As I cut wheat designs in the crust, I’d gaze out the upstairs kitchen window to keep an eye out for our beautiful dapple gray Percherons coming back with the hayride. I’d sprint down the stairs, grab the cash drawer and tell my grandmother whether the next buzzer was to rotate the pies or take them out. I would help load the wagon, quickly making change for families. Rides were $2 a person back then so the math was easy. Then I’d get a few minutes to visit with Bob, Bill and Vinny, and of course my Dad, before heading back in to wash my hands and keep baking, with a quick eye roll at my mom’s “pumpkin lady” vest and jewelry as she waited on customers in the stifling greenhouse with a big smile.

As it got later in the day I would be able to slow down baking and could even go on the hayride. Sometimes I would just relax and enjoy the ride, and sometimes I would get to drive. I learned to drive the horses when I was in fifth grade, but they knew the route well and could probably have done just fine without me holding the reins.

When the customers finally left we could close up the store while my dad cleaned up the horses, and then have a little fun running around on top of the hay maze (though you’re not supposed to do that). We would go to a fair or a movie, knowing that I’d be back in the kitchen at 8:00 the next morning. In late October we would get ready for the Haunted Hayride and work until late at night. We had more fun in the woods than the people did on the rides.

It was hard work, and I didn’t appreciate then that I could pick and eat as many apples as I wanted, and I didn’t like the bees around when we made cider, and I sometimes wished I could do nothing on weekends like some of my friends. Looking back now, I’m happy I had all those experiences. Like parenthood, the days are long but the years were short. We do our best now to give our boys similar experiences.

When you go visit your local family farm this year, remember you are visiting that family’s home. They pour their hearts and souls, blood, sweat and tears into welcoming your family and giving them a good time. Enjoy yourselves on a hayride, picking apples, loading a wagon with pumpkins and grab a pie while you’re there. And for heaven’s sake, don’t complain about the price of pumpkins.

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Menu Plan for the week of 4/13

Monday – chicken breast, leftover broccoli macaroni and cheese

Tuesday – picnic sandwiches at the baseball game

Wednesday – meatloaf, red potatoes, broccoli

Thursday – big salads with salmon

Friday – pizza party before the baseball game

Saturday – bbq ribs, macaroni and cheese, salad

Sunday – steak, sweet potatoes, salad

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Mother’s Day Brunch Menu

I’ve invited my parents over for Mother’s Day brunch tomorrow and here’s the menu I’m planning. Much of it is made ahead of time so I will be cooking today and will get to just enjoy tomorrow!

Quiches – I’m thinking one sausage, one veggie, and one cheese

Fruit salad

Roasted asparagus

Scones that I bought from a local bakery

Strawberry rhubarb jam

Tomato slices, fresh mozzarella and basil

My mom is bringing her yummy hash brown casserole, which is similar to this recipe but with crushed corn flakes on top instead of ritz crackers, and she’s also bringing bagels

Strawberry rhubarb pie

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