Diary Of A Homemaker's Week: June Began


Saturday:  Up extra early this morning.  I had a big day planned with the kids and I wanted to be sure that I was dressed and ready, had time for a leisurely coffee (actually had two cups this morning), and was mentally prepared to take on the children for a long day.

They arrived at about 9am.  The kids had eaten breakfast at home but asked for hot cocoa with marshmallows.  I've learned they will not drink HOT cocoa.  They will drink lukewarm cocoa.  I make it with half cold milk and half hot water.  They drained their cups.  

Millie asked for marshmallows and my instinct was to say No.  It was just added sugar.  But then I thought, "Gracious I've got TWO full bags of marshmallows up there.  What am I saving them for?"  And if it pleases a child to have six mini marshmallows to eat along with a cup of hot chocolate will it really be too much sugar?

We went to the library.  Millie got her first library card and checked out her own books.  There were board games and the library had a lot of toys so the kids were well-occupied for a good hour or so.  We played Candyland, Scrabble, and another table game where discs must slide through a narrow slot.

I'd pondered and pondered about what to feed them today.   I finally settled upon going to the dollar store for Lunchables.  I knew that would be a treat to them.  I bought extra juice boxes, strawberries, and those 50c bags of chips (about 1/2 ounce).  Our meals came with a juice box and a mini sweet treat.  Lunch for four cost less than $15. 

It was pleasant outdoors today and there's a quieter little park in a neighborhood I thought they'd enjoy.  It has one of those old-fashioned Go-Round things and seesaws and picnic tables  We ate lunch there and the children played until they were worn out.  That might have been part of my plan for the day...

I brought them back to their house for quiet time.  Josh nearly fell asleep on the couch.  I played one of their games and Isaac floated around between the living room, the dining table, and his room but he was quiet the whole time.  He gave me a lot of pats on the shoulder at first which eventually developed into shy hugs. 

Isaac has always been 'touchy'.  That's his love language and he's always loved to be hugged and held until this year.  Every time I'd reach to hug him back, he'd skitter away and withdraw but in a little while he was back patting my shoulder and coming around again to lean in as though he were going to hug me.  I finally just grabbed him and gave him a big hug and after that, he was more free with his hugs.

The kids kept telling me what a great day they had.  I am happy they enjoyed the day.  I told them we'd go to as many programs as we could.   I decided this afternoon to make each time out special in some small way though it might not be a picnic or a day at the park.

I checked out a few books for myself.  I went in with a list of authors to look for and as usual, found myself disappointed.  These are not unknown or old-fashioned writers. either.  I was looking for books by Kristin Hannah, whom other readers praise,  Anita Shreve, and Nina George.  Nope.  I found ONE Sophie Kinsella.  I'll keep trying each time we go.  It would be a good opportunity to stretch my reading muscle to include newer authors.  

Bess came a bit after 4pm.  She brought me the butter she'd set aside a few weeks ago and had frozen.  I didn't want to intrude on her time with the kids so I didn't stay long.   It was good to hug her once more.

Tonight's supper:  Taco Spaghetti (a one-pot meal) and green Salad.  I added avocado to my salad but John doesn't eat avocado.  Sometimes I have a hard time believing he grew up in South Florida.  He avoids avocados and mangoes like plagues.

Sunday:  Why don't people pick up the change they drop?  I do not mind bending to pick up coins (or dollars if those show up).  Today I picked up 20c.  

John and I headed home after church and then swapped cars to return to town and get gas for the mower.  He doesn't like to haul gas in my car.  We saw the contractor and one of our favorite of his employees working and John stopped to speak to them.  

When we got home, John sent a text of the jobs he wanted to get a quote on back to the contractor.  This is when we had the silliest argument and we got pretty heated.  There are two jobs I insisted we also get a quote for, as they are necessary things but John didn't think so.  Then he asked me how much I thought the work would cost and I told him.  He went through the roof.  I went right on through it with him. It went from bad to worse in the way these stupid arguments do.  And neither of us was backing down either.   We ate lunch without speaking, and then he went off to mow the other yard.  

I was still fussed so I worked and worked.  It led me to do more work than I had planned.  I work hard when I'm mad!   

And then it hit me.  We were both stupid.  We were arguing over a QUOTE.  We weren't even spending money!  And that made me even madder but more at myself than him.  

I made muffins using a wrinkly apple, walnuts, oatmeal, and cheddar cheese.  No recipe to share yet.  I need to tweak it.  I cooked them by about 2 minutes longer than they should have, but they needed more liquid than I put in.  They could use a little more fat, too.  They were not pretty looking but they tasted out good.  

I potted two plants and repotted a third.  I pulled onions, snipped basil, emptied the compost, and two bell peppers about the size of Millie's pinky fingertip. The onions and the garlic both are doing a mysterious disappearing act.     I'll bet it's the two-legged, two-handed shorter species pulling them up.

I puttered indoors.  I put the cuttings in water,  arranged flowers, washed my face, and got a cool drink.  At that point, it had been about 30 minutes since I'd been outdoors.  John was still there lying on the porch.  I asked if he wanted the rest of his Gatorade.  He said he was getting up.  I said, "Good...."  Then I told him how silly I thought we both were fighting over the cost of something we hadn't even contracted to purchase yet.   I went back indoors but the fight was well and truly over by then.

I really wanted to stop for lunch today on the way home, but I came in and made us a plate of food...I can't even remember what just now!  But we ate.  For supper, I put frozen chicken breasts in the oven covered with foil and cooked them at about 350F.  I made bread.  I had a portion of bread left over from last week's baking so I made croutons. I chopped chicken, cooked bacon, tomatoes, and lettuce. made up a batch of Ranch dressing, and served the salad with the croutons.  Yummy!  

Meals:  Cheese and Sausage Toast

Roast Beef Sandwiches

Chicken Club Salads

Monday:  Well.  Last night was pretty darn rough for me.  I had leg cramps all night long.  The moment I lay down in bed they started up.  I'd jerk awake with a cramp and get up and walk about.  I took magnesium and ate a banana. I drank a glass of Gatorade and then had pain relievers.  I was also waiting for a text from Katie telling me she was okay.  She'd texted that she was on her way to the hospital at her doctor's request due to heart palpitations.   I hesitated to text her because I thought she was either busy or possibly had drifted to sleep while waiting to be seen.  I'd seen the text when I got up with the first bout of cramps.

My thoughts spun and spun as I tossed and turned, jerked awake with cramps, etc.  I wondered if she would be admitted,  Wondered if I'd need to run over to Warner Robins early to get Caleb since Not the Mama (Cody's Dad, it's a sweet nickname the kids made up for him) would need to head to work, etc. Thoughts swirled and twirled and worry chased them about. I finally went to the guest bed, so I'd at least not disturb John's rest.  He was worn out by the heat yesterday and there's no need for us both to lose sleep.  I finally drifted to sleep but was awake by 6:30 this morning.  

I got up and sat in my chair with my phone in hand waiting for an answer.  She'd gone home at 1 a.m., never having been seen or checked at the hospital at all.  She told me she'd be speaking with her doctor again today.

I was outdoors watering flowers after breakfast when I heard Sam and the kids come up.  Sam was going to help John with some VA paperwork.  I tried to encourage the kids to be in the yard with me.  Josh quickly abandoned outdoors saying he was hot.  It was hot out there, but I needed to water plants since we'd not gotten any of the 'maybe rain' we were told we'd see this past weekend, three nights in a row.  I planted strawberry tops I'd sliced from berries, to see if I could grow plants from them.  Sam and Bess did that last fall and he picked his first strawberries this spring.  

Isaac wandered in and out.  Millie stuck with me.  She reached out to pick a flower and I said "No!"  I  thought she was reaching for a branch of the rose bush.  I saw I was mistaken and she wanted to pick a daylily next to the branch.  I told her to go ahead.  Goodness me!  I had to tell her which flowers she could pick after that.  She was ready to strip every petunia I had!    It was so hot, that I skipped watering the plants at the back of the house and came indoors to cool off.  I made me and the kids some Gatorade, then sat at the table talking with Sam and John.  

Millie helped herself to some grapes from the fridge and ate all of them.  Besides pizza, it's the most I've ever seen her eat.

Mama called and told me when her surgery was scheduled for 1:30 pm tomorrow.  I told her I'd be there to pick her up, reassured her about the surgery, and hung up.  Immediately the phone rang again.  Katie asked, "What are you doing tomorrow?"  "Taking Mama to surgery..."  "Oh.  Let me talk to Dad..."  So John's keeping Caleb while she goes to see her doctor.

Sam and the kids went home for lunch and I began preparing ours and prepping supper.  I was right in the middle of everything when Sam called.  "I forgot I have an appointment at 1:30!  Can you come watch the kids...Their lunch is still cooking."  I glanced at the clock.  It was 1:10.  "Can't, I have my lunch cooking...John, can you go keep the kids?"  He went off to feed the kids their lunch. I finished making ours.  As soon as I'd had a chance to gulp my lunch down, I went to the other house to trade off and sent him back here to eat his lunch.  The kids had eaten and cleared up behind themselves.

I came home and finished putting supper together but I didn't get anything done the rest of the day...I don't remember the things I was going to get done today... And I had quite a long list!

Tomorrow we'll go our separate ways.  John will leave early to go sit with Caleb.  I'll leave later to go get Mama.  

Meals:  Lower Carb Hash brown casserole (more eggs, less hash brown), toast, blueberries

Burgers in Low-Carb Tortilla Wraps

Butter Chicken, Basmati Rice, Lemon Dill Cucumber Salad.  I added tomato, red bell pepper, onion, and potatoes to my Butter chicken. It was so good!  But this Cucumber salad is a MUST try!  I didn't make a full recipe, just 1/4 but it was so light and delicious.  

Tuesday:  John had to leave the house earlier than I did today so we both got up early.  I'm grateful for the rest I got last night.  

I left to go over to Mama's a bit early. I stopped and picked up lunch to eat before I went to get her.  I knew she wasn't able to eat and didn't want to be eating in front of her.  When I arrived, she said, "I sure am hungry!"  I asked if she'd eaten anything for supper last night and at what time.  "I had half a deviled egg along about 5:30 which is a little later than usual."  Oh, good grief.  No wonder she had a headache!  I reminded her that in two weeks when she is having surgery to EAT and to even have a snack.  "You only have to fast from midnight, not from 5pm!"

Her appointment was at 1:30.  We arrived at about 1pm and did the paperwork.   I was told by the girl at the desk to leave after Mama went to the back.  "She asked me to stay and I told her I would."  "Just go on and leave.  She'll be out in about an hour..."  "I'm sorry, but we were told she'd be here longer."  "Oh they are wrong, it's never over an hour..."  Rolling my eyes. 

I'd given my word I'd be there...But I did go out to the car.  It was hot as blazes.  I sat there an hour and a half and then got a call that they were just then taking her to surgery.  I called John to catch up on our days, then told him I was going to go back indoors.  "It's just too darn hot out here!"  

It was 5pm when they released her but she did well.  I took her to get something to eat, because her first words were, "Golly I'm hungry!"  She didn't eat just half a boiled egg this evening.  She ate a big huge burger and onion rings and drank a soda!  

I got her settled at home, fed the dog, took the trash to the curb, and then asked if she needed anything more.  'I think I'm going to bed early tonight.'  I don't blame her.  

I have eaten nothing but fast food today.  I am looking forward to eating real food tomorrow. 

John had a variety of leftovers.  He said he enjoyed his time with Caleb.  And Katie's issue is possibly medication related so they are adjusting that.  This day is done.

Wednesday:  John put "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" on TV at almost 10pm, last night.  And I sat right there and watched it all.  It took me no time to go to sleep last night though, and I slept hard until early this morning and then I lay there and fought getting out of bed until my prayer group chat started dinging notifications.

I've done nothing today.  I don't plan to do anything today beyond bare basics.  I totaled and balanced the checkbook, paid what bills were in, made meals, cleaned dishes, and read a lot.  I told John I had no ambitions at all today.  I have plenty of things I should be doing, and could be doing, but as previously noted work always waits.  It never gets mad, walks off, and finds someone to do it.  It just waits until the one responsible picks it up and does it.  

Meals:  Eggs and Toast

Tuna Nicoise Salad with a homemade Dijon Vinaigrette which was sooo good!

Italian Burger Stuffed Portabella Mushrooms, Roasted Broccoli, and Red Bell Pepper Strips.   I am on a very creative cooking curve at the moment.  This meal too was sooo good!  John kept telling me how delicious it was.

For the burgers: I chopped the stems of the portabella mushrooms then added a couple of baby mushrooms too, sundried tomatoes, onion, and basil.  I had only 8 ounces of ground beef.  The vegetables could have stretched that to feed four.  However, I wanted a substantial meal for supper so I used half of the mixture to top two baked Portabella Mushroom caps (bought off a clearance produce rack at the discount store).  I had about 2 tablespoons of Pizza sauce left so when the burgers were done, I topped them with a bit of the pizza sauce and then a sprinkling of Mozzarella.  

Thursday:  I never did get over feeling tired yesterday.  I went to bed before 10pm and was asleep shortly.  I slept all night long, too.

John had mentioned going to get a haircut today.  There was an errand I'd been putting off, and another that we wanted to attend to.  And if I'm getting a haircut, I'm double-checking my Publix wish list and see if there are any sales I  want to take advantage of.  We decided before leaving home we'd eat out.  John suggested two places, which are unusual for us, but in the area where we planned to be.  I was fine with either one.  

I made the bed today.  That was it.  I know I've things to do here but I didn't realize that John meant to leave so late today.  His purpose was to avoid the crowd at the restaurant he really wanted to go to, and since we could not get in the door typically, I understood.  Thinking we were leaving at any moment this morning, I sat and read.  If I'd known that the morning was my window of opportunity for work, I'd have worked instead.

We ran errands, had an inexpensive lunch, got haircuts, and shopped at Publix.  For the first time in weeks, I earned money back from Ibotta.  We bought produce.  At the register, I picked up two bags of Tiny Tates cookies. I got $1 back on each one, which meant the cookies cost only 25c for the two of them.

I tried a Poppi beverage today.  It's one of those 'good for you' drinks.  I see myself enjoying one to replace soda on a hot afternoon.

I also have to announce that my eating low-carb has already begun to pay off.  I was able to put on a pair of jeans that I couldn't even button a few weeks ago and today they buttoned easily and sat comfortably on me.  I didn't feel 'stuffed' in them.  It's a forward step.  I have only my clothing to judge my progress because I don't have a scale here at home and I have no idea where I was when I started. I know I had one pair of jeans that felt comfortable and one pair that almost fit if I sucked in hard. But I have a variety of pants that don't fit by which I can easily judge progress and that's what I'll go by.  

For the past two weeks, I've based my eating on trying to eat fewer heavy carbs.  For the coming two weeks, I'll continue to lower my carb intake a little more by finding alternatives that will net me less sugar and fat and at the same time avoid artificial sweeteners.  For example,  drinking that Poppi beverage to replace soda.   I drink lots of water, especially in the summer and I really enjoy it but after about the fifth glass...I'm ready for something different.

Meals:  I had a piece of Peanut Butter toast.

out for lunch.  Mine was soup and salad.  John's a burger and salad.

Pork Chops, Sliced Tomatoes, Baked Potato, Green Beans.

Friday:  I had planned to get up early this morning...I almost didn't, but the dog accidentally knocked on the door (he's done this before while scratching) and John thought someone was there so he rushed into the room to get fully dressed.  He told me to go back to sleep but I recalled my purpose today was to wake early, get outdoors, and finish what I could of the rose bed.  I didn't have enough mulch, but I spread what I had, then moved the coral pink rose bush potted in a HUGE pot to the empty space left when I cut back the antique rose.  

Do you talk to your plants?  I talk to them all!  I kept telling the rose I was sorry for my method of moving it (I rolled it from the corner bed to the back of the house) and how happy I hoped it would be in its new spot where it could get more rainwater and sunlight and how pretty it would be in that spot.  I noted the Stargazer lily is up and about to bloom.  I don't know how it came to be where it is, but the lantana roots grew over it ages ago and I can not remove it.  So I watch each year for the bloom and then immediately bring it indoors to enjoy.  Otherwise, the lantana makes it invisible.

I have been slowly doing my end-of-week work.  I got very hot and had to stop for a cool drink.  I have bagels rising, meals to plan for today and the rest of the weekend, and the guest bathroom to clean, then I can say I'm done.   

This afternoon the kids and I are going to a program at the library.  And that will be the end of this week for me.  

How has your week been?  Were you busy?  Did you find great bargains, or do something special?  Please share in the comments.

Meals: Boiled Egg, Bacon, Toast



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Mable said...

I am going to try that recipe with Italian burgers and portabella mushrooms this weekend! I try to make one new recipe a week and this sounds perfect. Thanks!

Lisa from Indiana said...

Speaking of eating a low carb diet....I've been reading (and studying) Dr. Michael Greger's, "How Not to Die". It has really made me think differently about the way I eat. I have always been more of the "Nourishing Traditions" mindset, but Dr. Greger's book has truly changed my thinking (and my eating).

Delores said...

First in regard to your leg cramps, I suggest pickle juice. I drink Mt Olive pickle juicers. It comes in a 64 oz bottle and Publix price is $4.39. I was told Kroger doesn't carry it. It is in the vinegar section. A good sip works for me but some people say they drink an ounce. I drink every other day and it works for me- no leg or feet cramps. Hubby drinks it every day. This stuff works!!!
2nd in regard to the library. Is your library in the Pines system? The Pines system consists of libraries across the state of Ga. If your system is part of the Pines system, you can set up an online account with the system, locate books you want and put them on hold. Your library requests them from whatever library the books are and they are sent to your library for you to pick up there and then return to your library. It is wonderful and so convenient.
I enjoy your blog so much.

terricheney said...

Mable, I hope you find it every bit as tasty as we did. I think it's the sundried tomatoes (I buy the sort without oil) that makes the difference in that mixture.

MichB, I accidentally deleted your comment. I got trigger happy. I'm sharing your comment as a copy/paste. Thank you for letting me know about this.

From MichB : "Therawox Relief, 2 pumps of the foamy liquid on the cramped area..believe i got it in Walgreens..fairly expensive $19 i recall , but have had the container for several years..works almost instantly."

Lisa, I've never heard of Dr. Gregor. I know a woman through church small group who is a holistic health/ nutritionist and found her website online. She recommends a lower-carb, grain-free, sugar-free way of eating. I am not going either grain-free or sugar-free entirely. I'm following Granny's old adage of everything in moderation. However, I am feeling a LOT better eating less carbs overall, including grains, and sticking to fresh foods. I've added a bit more fat into my diet because as a former WW girl, eating fat-free things sticks in one's mind hard. I know several homesteaders who follow Nourishing Traditions. It's the way my great-grandparents ate and they lived very long and healthy lives. However, I know from experience that one method of eating does not work well for every single person. I wish you well on your journey.

Delores thank you. I've seen that pickle juice in one of the stores and it was with the pickles. I believe it is our local grocery that has it...

mikemax said...

I take one magnesium caplet daily and it works...unless I do something dumb like run out and wait a week or two to buy more.............
--Maxine, aka mikemax

Delores said...

It is with the vinegar at Publix.

Casey said...

For leg cramps, I’m a yellow mustard girl! About a tsp and it takes care of it. Not sure why it works, but it does.

mikemax said...

Meant to add, if you do get a cramp in your leg or foot, the best thing you can do is stand up and put weight on it. Almost instant relief, although sometimes it comes back so do the same thing again. I have found that rubbing or massaging is worthless for me. Just stand up.

Karla said...

I'm so glad your Mama's surgery went well and she's settled in. I used to get cramps in the arch of my foot in the middle of the night all the time in my 20s and 30s. Not sure why, but it did end up going away eventually. So I have no tips on the cramps. Hope you find relief!

I've saved both the Mushroom and the Cucumber recipes. Can't wait to add those to my meal plans next week. I've been concentrating on adding veggies to our dinners since meeting with the nutritionist. Lunch is easy because it's jut me. Dinner can be a challenge because my husband doesn't like very many veggies and hates the ones I love. LOL But the more I work at it, the better it'll get.

Congrats on the pants fitting better! That's always a nice feeling. I'm not there yet but I know I'll get there.

Rhonda said...

Hello friend, my you’ve had a busy week!
I do hope Katie and baby are fine.

Jeff has those night cramps- he’s tried lots of things but the cramps tend to come in spurts of a few nights in a row and then a few nights without them.

The local school district is going all out with meals for kiddos in the summer, I picked up 5 days worth for Nina’s 3 and was amazed at how generous it was. I remember your grands getting this last year and I hope it’s available to them this year too

ladybug said...

I am missing your posts. I know that it is sometimes hard to keep up on the blog - life does happen. :) I hope that you and your family are okay.