Week of July 18

We went to a cookout at our friends’ place on Friday and figured that Charlie would get sleepy around 8pm and we would head home then. 8pm came and went, and Charlie was still the life of the party, playing with three dogs and crawling around to everyone there, so we decided to see how long it would last. To our surprise he lasted until we left and 10pm, but was asleep in his carseat before we even backed out of their driveway.

Charlie seems to be adjusting well to daycare, and we are finally getting in a morning routine. We’ve had time a couple mornings this week to go for a walk by the waterfront before daycare, which has been really nice.

Instagram turned into QVC 2.0. I’ve complained about it here on the blog before. I’ve been trying to think about what I can do to minimize my usage of Instagram.

What I’d miss about it:

  • We live far away from family, so a lot of keeping up with extended family is done on Instagram.
  • We also live far away from lots of our friends. As people have kids, texts, emails, and calls become less and less frequent, but at least we have Instagram to keep in touch.

I don’t really want to lose those two things, so realistically I’m probably going to stay on Instagram. That said, I think there are some ways I can nudge people toward better communication mediums:

  • Encourage more friends to blog and help them set up a blog
  • Emails newsgroups with friends
  • Letter writing
  • Book groups, preferably with a group blog where everyone can share their thoughts. Wouldn’t that be a cool use of P2?

We planted six grow bags (7gal size) of potatoes this year, three bags of a white variety and three bags of a red variety (Adirondack red). The red variety was ready to harvest, so we dug through them this morning. Charlie grabbed one and started chomping on it 🙂

We cooked some of these tonight. Parboiled, finished on the grill, then tossed with butter, parsley, salt, and pepper. Probably going to use some in brown butter potato salad with dill next.

We also picked some of our first snow peas and added them to our salads tonight.

I baked Alison Roman’s Blueberry Cornmeal Tart for the aforementioned friends’ cookout. It turned out great! We’ve been getting 2 quarts of blueberries a week for the past four weeks from the fruit share we are a part of. Charlie eats about as many as Amanda and me put together, so we’ve been going through them. But we’ve frozen enough to make a couple more of these tarts this winter.

A Trader Joe’s opened close to us this week! Very exciting to be able to shop there whenever instead of needing to plan for a 40 minute drive each way. A lot of their stuff is “convenience food” and more expensive than making everything yourself, but at this stage of life with a 1 year old and both parents working full time, we are willing to spend a bit more for the time savings. We tend to get things like their tamales, the marinated meats like chicken shawarma and carne asada, dips, and some pantry items like rice pilaf mixes, pasta, couscous, and sauces. We rarely get fruits and vegetables there (we get most from local farms during the summer and fall), but if we do it is usually a convenience item like shredded cabbage for a quick coleslaw or base for a bowl.

I can manage my heartburn/reflux by watching what I eat and not eating anything after 6 or 7pm. At least once a month I think it will be fine to eat pizza and have a beer at 10pm and it never is.

Red wine, amaro, and liquors without mixers are my best bet for avoiding heartburn if I want a drink. Beer just doesn’t sit well with me anymore. Neither do cocktails with lots of citrus. Dry ciders are mostly okay.

I picked up some kefir today and am interested in making a glass of it a day part of my regular diet. I’d like to start making it again, but probably not in the cards right now.

Speaking of fermented foods: We found a great babysitter a couple months ago whose parents are Haitian immigrants. We often chat about Haitian food. Today she brought us some pikliz (spicy pickled vegetable slaw that slowly ferments). I’ve been having a bit with dinner the last couple nights. Really good stuff! I think I might make some of my own. This version is cabbage, carrots, habanero peppers, white vinegar, and lime juice. Some recipes online have onions or shallots, some don’t. I’m in favor of leaving onions out, because they tend to get pretty pungent and funky after a week or so.

When I’m feeling unmotivated, down, or generally off, it is so important to either accomplish something right away (even something mundane like emptying the dishwasher) or get outside and go for a walk. I usually need to drink water, too. I rarely drink enough water.

An important question I’ve been asking myself recently: What are some things taking place during this season (of life, of work, meteorological) that I can embrace instead of focusing on the things that aren’t?


Currently reading:

  • Sand, Wind, and Stars by Antoine de Saint-Exupery
  • Dancing at the Rascal Fair by Ivan Doig
    • Second book in the Montana series. I already had book one and read it a couple weeks ago (English Creek), and I was able to find nice hardcover versions with good dust jackets this week at the local used bookstore, Bruised Apple.

Books I learned about this week and added to the ever-growing “want to read” list:

  • The Stormlight Archive by Brandon Sanderson
  • Candy House by Jennifer Egan
  • Dark Matter by Blake Crouch
  • Wild Problems by Russ Roberts
  • The Living Mountain by Nan Shepherd
  • This Is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

Around the internet

Until next week—keep blogging 👋

Likes, Bookmarks, and Reposts

  • Tracy Myers
  • Sara Morrison
  • kara ☻ (lives in LA now)
  • M.R. “All Good Things” Mayday
  • Deryk Makgill
  • Ilya Radchenko

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