Monthly Check In: April

Monthly Check-In April

How did April come and go and we’re still in this bizarre new other world? Sigh.

Continue Practicing Gratitude

I completed the Yale course, The Happiness of Well-Being. It is free and I highly recommend it. You can find it here. I continue to note things daily that I’m grateful for, although sadly/happily my gratitude jar has been packed away (more on that later). I’m in the black on this one.

Continue Spending Time With Family and Friends

This is a joke, right? Okay, in all seriousness, I’ve spent more time with my immediate family of husband and sons than ever before and it’s awesome. I’ve literally never been happier surrounded by them all 24/7. And also, please, for the love of all things selfish, I need a day to myself. We didn’t get to see family live-and-in-person, but we did do a FaceTime with my mom and brother and his awesome family. I send cards to friends/family once a week; silly cards, thank you cards, all kinds of cards. Just things to let people know I’m thinking about them. Since that’s kind of all we can do right now, I’m in the black here, too.

Continue My Self-Care Regime

With how hot it’s been I’ve stopped getting in the sauna three times a week. When it’s hot it’s just too much of a chore for me. I do, however, maintain self-care by practicing yoga, meditating, and watching The Handmaid’s Tale on Hulu because I just need to disappear from this reality for awhile (even if it’s for an even creepier and also not-that-hard-to-believe reality). I’m in the black on this one, too.

Spend More Time Outside

We have been spending so much time outside in our yards, y’all won’t even believe me. We literally spend a minimum of four hours outside every day, and it is actually much closer to eight to ten. And it’s been wonderful. The more we are outside the better the kids sleep, the better I sleep, the happier we all are in general…Outside: it’s where it’s at. I don’t have an updated pic of our 1000 Hours Outside Challenge but it’s easily one-third full. Crazy. We’re in the black on this one, too.

Write for One Hour Every Day

Super in the red on this one. I’ve spent an hour writing every day, but not here. I’ve made a few April posts on my blog, but most of my writing has been in a journal and in cards. I’m in a bit of a fiction writer’s fog right now, a little too overwhelmed by everything to sit and write calmly at a keyboard. In fact, this little bit of sitting here typing is sending me into a bit of an anxiety attack. I literally want to be doing anything else.

Submit at Least One Piece for Publication
Each Month

As discussed: not happening.

Read at Least One Book a Month

I’ve only read two books this month. Two. More than my one book a month goal, but surprisingly few with how voracious a reader I am normally. But I just can’t, y’all. I can’t. The only way I can focus enough to disappear right now is visually with movies/shows. But at least I’m in the black on this one for this month.

Take a Stained Glass Making Class

I still plan on being able to make this NYR happen this year but it’s not entirely in my hands right now. All dependent upon quarantine.


So, here’s the thing: we’ve been BUSY. We decided that since we are “stuck” at home, we might as well do all the things we’ve been needing to do to the house: renovations, paint, that sort of thing. This is nearly impossible to do with kiddos in the house, sooooooo, we moved into our trailer and are camping in our front yard. Ha! I say “moved into” but we still go into the house to go to the bathroom and shower and stuff, so we’re really just sleeping in the trailer and eating our lunches at the little bistro table out front. It’s been wonderful for the kids because they spend tons of time outside now from sun-up to sun-down, and because it helps them take their minds off the fact that they haven’t been to the library or park (or anywhere) for so long. They love that we’re “camping.”

My husband and I spent a few weeks packing up the majority of our things to get them out of the way and then selling all the stuff we found that we’ve never touched in five years. It’s been a fabulous kind of cleanse and purge and has helped sincerely with my feelings of overwhelm as it’s given me something to focus on besides the pandemic.

How are you doing on your New Years Resolutions? Are you meeting your goals? If you’re having trouble, take a look at my post on Achievement and let me know if it helps you!

The Handmaid’s Tale

The Handmaid's Tale

Yesterday was my day to be completely overwhelmed. My anxiety was through the roof. I finally realized I just needed an extreme crying session. A massive sob fest. I needed to empty my bucket. Since I couldn’t just let go on my own, I’d been holding it in too long, I decided I needed a movie to help me.

Reaching out to my online support network I received a barrage of suggestions for movies that are “spectacularly sad, guaranteed to make you sob.” Sadly as I tried to find the first couple of suggestions on all the options we subscribe to I was unable to. And then I came across a suggestion for The Handmaid’s Tale.

The book The Handmaid’s Tale is spectacular. Phenomenal. I read it before it was required reading in school, again when I got to that place in school where it’s required, and then again shortly after 2016. I love this book. Because I love this book I had no interest whatsoever in watching a series that would butcher it (since I automatically assume a beloved book will be butchered in the filming).

What the hell, I figured, I might as well try it and see….

While it was absolutely the wrong thing for me to start watching when I was already tense, anxious, and overwhelmed, it is stunningly good. I’m only half-way in to the second episode of the first season, but I am completely engrossed and can’t wait to get back to it. The acting is amazing and they are sticking to the book really, really well.

I’m much more of a reader than a viewer, but (so far) this is one instance where I would say you can watch the show and not lose the soul of the book.

Time To Myself

Time To Myself

Sometime in late February or early March I remember thinking to myself, and perhaps even saying out loud, “I just need a few hours to myself!” I was feeling overwhelmed by all the bad weather we’d been having, the kids being trapped in the house for days, not sleeping well because they weren’t burning energy during the day, and we were all just going a bit stir crazy. I remember wishing for time alone.

This isn’t what I meant.

See my husband is immunocompromised and needs to stay home with the kids on the one day every other week or every third week that I leave the house to go do all of our errands: grocery shopping, mail pickup at the post office (we have a PO Box), stopping at my mom’s house to drop off whatever food I was able to get that my mom wasn’t able to on her shopping trip, picking up whatever random item we need from the hardware store now that we’re always in the house and using/breaking things constantly.

These errand days used to happen once a week every week. Only I brought the kids with me. These errand days were literally the longest days of my life every week because they took so long to complete and the kids and I were all exhausted by the time we were finally on the road back home.

Now these days happen once every other week or every third week and I’m no longer getting kids in and out of carseats, in and out of shopping carts, cajoling them to please take a deep breath cause we’d be done soon, and even without all that, I’m completely exhausted by the time I’m finally on the road back home.

And the thing is, it is unbelievably easier to do all the errands now. I can literally accomplish the same number of errands or even more and it takes less than half the time. Less.Than.Half. And the entire time I am keenly aware of how much emotional pressure I’m under, how grateful I am that I can leave my kids safely at home, and how terribly much I miss them.

When I finally do arrive home, I bring in all the things and sanitize/put them away, then dump my mask and all my clothes directly into the washing machine, then go scrub myself in a hot shower with soap, then come back out and start the washing machine, before finally picking up the baby that’s been waiting for my boobs to come back.

These days leave me drained.

These days leave me in invisible tears.

This is not what I meant.

I take it back.



The last several nights have seen me spending my hour of writing time on other things (utter failure for my monthly check-in when I will clearly not have written every day for one hour). I finally got to see The Biggest Little Farm (Hulu) and it was epic. I loved every minute of it. I laughed and cried and it reminded me of my dreams ten years ago. Dreams I’d given up on, and now have sparked back to life, but in a different, more achievable/manageable form.

My family and I have been talking about moving for four years, and moving specifically to Oregon for three years. Every year we think we’re going to make the big move and every year we end up putting it off, there are just too many other things to do, there always are. It’s like when people want to have a baby but are always saying “now’s not a good time.” Hey, guess what? It’s never a good time. A Good Time is a mythical construct meant to make you feel better about not achieving your dreams.

Or at least it was for us.

Not anymore. This virus has been awful for so many reasons, but it’s also been a bit of A Good Time for us in that we:

  • have loved being all together as a family every day
  • decided there was no better time than now to paint the house and list it for sale
  • are looking at property to purchase in Oregon once our house sells
  • decided to create a mini-farm, a self-sustaining/organic/biodynamic farm

I have been caring for chickens for over ten years, so while I know a lot, I don’t know everything. One of my favorite things to do before making a big decision, like purchasing the chicks for a new flock, is to go back through and research all my options. I’m always glad when I do because I learn of new breeds, or remember that I have always wanted to have Cuckoo Marans but could never find them, etc.

In other words, I’ve been spending my time researching chickens (again!) and it’s so intensely gratifying and exciting and optimistic. We will likely wind up with a flock of only ten or so laying hens, which seems woefully tiny, especially when I once had a flock of nearly fifty. Going through and finding out which birds to purchase soothes something in me.

I can’t wait to do the research on the pigs…the cattle…the goats.

I miss having goats so much. Not ducks or geese, but goats. Sigh.

Off to research some more….



My husband is a god. I don’t know how I got so lucky. He appears to be a normal man, all the right body parts and all the regular farts and burps. He even has his faults, like being stubborn and impatient (faults I share with him). But for all that, he’s an amazing man.

I first fell in love with him as a partner. Children were not something I thought were in the cards for me and I’d given up on that aspect of life. So when I fell for this man, it was because of who he was and what he offered as a lover. I fell in love with his kindness, this enormous heart of his that surprises me with it’s intensity. I fell in love with his humor (although I tell him all the time he’s not funny), his ability to bring joy into even the most mundane situation.

When we found out I was pregnant, I was given the great honor of falling in love with him as a parent. He would read books to my swelling belly, wiped tears when he heard the first heartbeat, and swore under his breath “oh balls” when we found out we were having a boy. Since the kids have arrived I’ve fallen even more in love with this man, their father, who is occasionally stubborn and impatient, but is also kind and hilarious.

When we decided to get married I got to fall in love with him as a husband. A man who is constantly trying to improve himself, who is always putting me first even when I don’t recognize it right away. A man who is equally up for adventure or another day on the homestead. There seems to be no end to his ability to awe and inspire me and his gift for seeing things as they could be is one I’ve come to envy and attempt to emulate.

These last few weeks in quarantine have been wonderful. Yes, the stress and the fear and and and (he’s immunocompromised, so there is a lot of fear). Getting to see him interact with the boys every day has been the absolute best thing ever. Being nearby to pop in and steal a kiss or drop off a smoothie or let him know the family dance party was starting in three minutes…I wouldn’t trade any of this for the world.

My strongest hope is that we continue to appreciate one another, to grow and evolve together, to keep sculpting this incredible family we’ve created. I want to wake up in thirty years, roll over and watch the sunrise with him. From making coffee for me in the morning (he doesn’t drink the stuff) to bringing up wood for the fire each night. From bringing me tea when I’m at the computer to grilling up steaks for dinner. From taking the baby in the morning so I can get another hour or three of sleep to taking out the trash.

I want to appreciate all the little things, because they’re really very big. The little things are the things a life is built upon. The things a love grows from. The things that make you fall in love.



A friend recently posted that she’s becoming exhausted making lemonade out of lemons every day. I think we are all feeling that way. It is exhausting. It’s exhausting if you’re single, it’s exhausting if you’re married. It’s exhausting if you have kids, it’s exhausting if you have pets. It’s exhausting if it’s you, and only you, and no one else. But the thing is, it’s never just us, alone. There is no such thing as just us alone, unless of course you happen to live alone off-grid somewhere and you don’t even realize there’s a pandemic going on like that family in Russia (link here, it’s a fascinating read from 1978).

The thing is, we put so much pressure on ourselves to be everything to everyone and to do everything for everyone and all that time we aren’t caring for ourselves. And no, this won’t be another self-care blog, because you can find plenty of that everywhere, I probably did one, too. By now you know you need to make yourself a priority and if you’re not there’s nothing I can say that will change your mind.

Here we are in the middle of chaos and we still have expectations for ourselves that are ridiculous. Whether anyone else is saying anything or not, we have this belief that we need to be better, do better, do more.

Stop. Just. Stop.

If you get out of bed in the morning, that’s awesome. If you get out of pajamas and into clothes each day, good for you! If you set your kids in front of the television and let them watch whatever they want for eight hours straight, give yourself a pat on the back. If you make yourself a cup of coffee, drink it, and go back to bed, way to go! If the “only” thing you’ve accomplished all day is to breathe and make it to tomorrow, you’re winning!

Yes, there are TONS of things you could be doing because so much is free right now. There are courses and operas and movies and games and and and…. It’s all so very overwhelming.

There are also people dying, every day, and if you’ve lost someone my deepest sympathies to you.

It is okay to grieve.

There is nothing wrong with simply existing until this over. Because nothing about this is simple.

You do not need to have earned a doctorate when this over.

Give yourself the sort of love and kindness and empathy you would give a friend or a loved one. Give yourself the gift of acceptance. Accept where you are and how you’re feeling and that you want to spend the day (or the next three weeks) in pj’s in bed with Netflix.

Save that lemonade for a day when you can drink it with friends.

Today, tomorrow, just be.



She woke early, before the sun had risen, but she could tell it was going to. The kind of mostly dark that comes just before the world begins to brighten. She could hear her husband’s deep breathing beside her and gently extricated herself from the blankets, the bed creaking a bit as she rose up. She paused, hoping the creak hadn’t woke him, gratified to find it hadn’t. It wasn’t often she had a morning all to herself.

She walked out of the room, gently tapping her thigh so the dog would follow, and closing the door behind them. She went to the back door and opened it so the dog could go out and relieve himself. She shivered a bit in the chill that morning air, considered wrapping her robe tighter around herself, but opening it instead, enjoying the chill, appreciating the warmth of the house even more.

The dog came back in and she closed the door. The kids must still be asleep, too, and probably would be for another couple of hours. They’d taken to staying up late and talking, laughing for hours rather than go to bed at their appointed bed time. It was fine with her as long as they stayed in their room and got up in time to help with morning chores, which they always managed to do.

Their kitchen wasn’t large or fancy, and she was glad, it was functional. It was perfect. They’d taken out the cutting board that nested above the silverware drawer, the cutting board was too large to be useful and too cheap to be attractive. The whole above the drawer wasn’t exactly easy on the eyes but it made the silverware drawer easily and quietly accessible which she loved. She reached in and grabbed a spoon then opened the cupboard with the coffee grinds and the French press. She measured her coffee in no particular way, a heap was a heap after all, and two heaps were all that was needed for the perfect cup of joy.

Five minutes later, a warm cup between her hands, she walked out to the sun room. It would be planting weather soon and she checked on her starts. She’d had much better success this year, whether because she changed seed companies or because they’d finally had enough years working their compost that it now did the trick. Either way the starts were popping at a record 98% and she was excited at the prospect of being able to sell some in addition to planting their entire crop.

It was still too chilly to water everything, so she sat in her chair, the one her husband had wanted to throw out because it didn’t match anything, but that she quietly secreted to the sun room, confident he’d never miss it and that she’d have the chance to use it at some point. It had become the highlight of her occasional quiet mornings, this lone ugly chair. She never worried about ruining it or sitting in it properly. She’d sometimes sit sideways, legs dangling over the armrest, sometimes legs crossed beneath her as though in meditation. The chair never complained.

She watched as the sky lightened, only a few colors from this perspective, not the full range of a stunning mountain morning. Still she appreciated it, savored the quiet. The chill in the air was almost gone and she suspected today might actually be the best day for planting. She looked over the starts again, smiling, then went back into the house to start breakfast.

They’d had pancakes yesterday, a once a week tradition that they’d started when their first was born and which they’d continued to this day, despite the fact that she and her husband were only mildly pancake people. The boys, on the other hand, loved pancake day and always wanted to pick the fruit each week leading to a mild altercation about who had picked the week before, cries of “nuh uh,” and “but I don’t even like blueberries,” abounded meant to prove their case.

Today she thought she’d make eggs, poached. Some bacon, no, they’d had that with pancakes, her secret indulgence the smearing of the bacon in the leftover syrup, heaven. Sausage then. And hashbrowns, they had some potatoes she needed to use before they started to get soft. She checked the fridge to be sure they had spinach and ketchup, too, which they did. Good. She’d have spinach with her breakfast instead of sausage and the boys wouldn’t touch hashbrowns without ketchup, so the plan was a go.

She began scrubbing the potatoes. She considered peeling them but since these were organic and from their own garden she left them on, a few extra vitamins and minerals would be good for the boys and smothered under ketchup they’d never notice anyway. She got out the grater and went to work, humming low some nameless thing that came to her sometimes when cooking. The potatoes ready for the pan, she got out the egg carton and noticed it was a bit light. Looking inside she saw not the dozen she knew she should have but one. Someone hadn’t done chores yesterday.

She sighed and went to the mudroom, stepping into her muck boots and grabbing the egg basket from the hook. She walked out toward the coop, still humming, her robe now loose and billowing about her. She looked in the chicken run on her way towards the nesting boxes and saw all as it should be. The hens clucked at her, hoping she’d brought some kitchen treats and the amiable rooster, Emmett, whom she’d fallen in love with, the only rooster she’d never had to take a stick to, puffed up his chest and fluffed his wings at her. She was convinced he was in love with her, too.

Walking to the nesting boxes she lifted the lid only to find several pairs of eyes pop open and stare accusingly at her. All four boxes were full of hens and one box even had two girls in it. “Oh come now,” she said, exasperated. Her least favorite hen, the old biddy who went broody every time an egg was laid was sitting to the far right. She reached over, scooped her up and off the nest, and placed her on the ground. The raucous she put up would make someone think she’d been beaten within an inch of her life rather than picked up and set down. “Really?” she said aloud, before grabbing at the pile of eggs and dropping them two at a time into her basket.

She emptied the nest, fourteen eggs, closed the lid, and walked back to the house.

~~~That’s one hour~~~



When the waves began she didn’t notice. The waves had come before, in a different manner, true, and a different place, but still. She knew the waves were nothing to concern herself with and so she didn’t. Until they began coming closer together. Coming more often. Coming stronger. The waves began coming in a pattern, she could guess when the current one would end, the next one begin, she began to notice a feeling she could call pain but was more like discomfort, not pain. Not yet.

It would be time soon, she’d need the midwife, she’d need hot water. She’d need towels. She finished the row and stopped seeding the field. She marked with a stick where she left off; she’d need to finish the seeding quickly or it would be a difficult winter. She went to the barn, ensuring the animals had enough feed and water, a habit she’d gotten into every evening for the past month. A caution. A responsibility.

Closing up the barn she stopped to breath. The discomfort was coming closer to pain with every passing wave. She closed up the barn and went for the house. She’d need to phone the midwife before doing anything more, give her time to collect her things and get to the farm. Give her time to put her own animals away. For the first time she considered that perhaps she had already waited too long to make the call.

Shaking her head to clear the thought she entered her home, stripping off her mucky boots at the entrance, her hat, the small pistol she always kept when working outside alone. She sat on the bench for a moment longer letting another wave peak and begin it’s slow recession. She reached up to brush a stray hair from her head and noticed she was sweating. Already.

She made the call, the midwife easy to hand and quick to reassure her she was on the way. The waves were coming much faster now and though she’d always been a quiet woman, stoic even, she realized she was beginning to get quite loud. She was surprised by the sound, and listened to herself for a moment. Was she speaking? No. These were just sounds, not animal, she’d seen and heard her own animals give birth. The sounds she was making were not animal.

Her vocalizations were primal, loud, and sounded like a dull roar. Perhaps animal after all. Not a farm animal though. Or at least not one she’d ever encountered. Still, it was familiar. A sort of chuffing, like a cougar. Yes. That was it. She smiled a bit as she chuffed, smiled and grimaced, and opened her mouth wide to roar.

She realized she was pacing, hadn’t remembered getting up or walking, but she was. Big round circles around the room with an occasional short streak from one side to the other and many stops to squat a bit and roar. And then the roaring stopped. The waves were different now. They were no longer fast, no longer peaking.

The new waves were longer with no clear middle. She rode the waves no longer roaring. She smiled, grabbing the counter in the kitchen, the perfect height. When had the midwife arrived? She hadn’t noticed. Still, there she was. Knitting in a corner. She looked up from her project, must have felt the eyes upon her or the change in the room from effort to surprise.

They smiled at one another. The midwife went back to her knitting. She went back to her laboring.

The baby was born shortly after, the sound of first crying the sweetest sounds to a mother’s ears. The baby was put immediately to the breast, and suckled with gusto.

“Mind the teeth,” the midwife warned.

“Teeth? Ouch!”

Releasing her nipple from the babe’s mouth the new mother looked with awe into the gaping, crying mouth and saw teeth. Not a complete set mind you, but teeth. She’d never seen such a thing, never heard of it. She must have made a face because the midwife felt the need to intervene.

“First I’ve ever seen,” she said, “though I’ve heard of it. Doesn’t happen often, see? From what I know, they are sometimes loose enough to pull right out, and other times stay in just fine. Did you want me to try and pull them out then?”

“I…I don’t know.”

“The babe will work around them to feed, won’t be a problem for long. We can leave em in and see,” the midwife suggested.

“Yes. No. I…let’s see if they’re loose.”

The midwife left the infant in his mothers arms and reached over with one hand to open his mouth, using the forefinger of her other hand to reach in and test the teeth.

“Nope, not loose,” she stated, “they won’t interfere, I’m sure of it. Just make you more nervous than anything. I’ll be back in the morning to check on you.”

With that she packed up her bag of things, double checked that she’d set out a bowl of soup and some water for the mother, and eager to let the mom get some sleep and bond with the baby, she took her leave.

The babe had quieted and fallen asleep after the indignity of a finger in his mouth. The mother looked upon him in wonder. So perfect. So big. He was a huge baby, the largest she’d ever seen. She felt sure she could put him down and he’d begin crawling he was just so large. Her arms ached not only from the strain of holding his weight but from the sheer exhaustion of the birth.

Laying him down gently in her bed she went to the bowl of soup, famished. Rather than scoop the contents into her mouth she simply picked up the bowl and drank, pausing occasionally as a large morsel fell from the bowl into her mouth and required chewing. She sucked down the remains of the soup, using a finger to slide the last little bits into her mouth. She drank down the glass of water and poured another, drinking it too, this time slower.

She went to the bathroom, her body unsure exactly how to perform this act under the new conditions but eventually catching on to what was being asked of it and complying. She let out a sharp but brief cry before relaxing and cleaning up. Realizing just how bone deep her fatigue was she limped back to the bed, sliding in between the sheets, her quilt tucked up over her chest, the enormous new body instinctively wiggling closer to her. Her scent? Her heat? Something drew the new creature closer and she draped an arm around him.

~~~That’s one hour~~~

Turmeric Ginger Honey

Turmeric Ginger Honey

My hubby has an autoimmune issue and is always on the lookout for things that will boost his immune system that don’t taste like ass and that actually help. Awhile ago he came across this idea that if you mix turmeric root, ginger root, and honey and drink it in tea that it’s super good for you. If you make the mix properly, it tastes good too. So we started making it at home.

If you are able to find fresh, organic roots, it’s much easier as you don’t need to peel them, just wash/scrub them like you would a potato or mushroom.

We have found the tastiest ratio to be 3/4 turmeric root and 1/4 ginger root.

In other words, you can use any amounts you want to get the desired final quantity, but the best ratio for taste it to always have 3:1.

I wash and scrub the roots, cut them into relatively large chunks of about half an inch or so, and throw them in a food processor. I suspect a Vitamix would work even better and will likely attempt that the next time I make this.

Let them get chopped up until they are just little itty bitty pieces, but not liquified.

Get jelly jars or any smaller glass containers you have with lids. Fill the containers almost to the top with the root mixture, but don’t tamp it down tight, leave it loose. You want to leave about a 1/4 to a 1/2 an inch of space at the top. Then pour in some honey and let it start to steep down into the root mix. You can help it along with a spoon. Add more honey and keep moving it around so the honey can get down in there, filling all the air pockets.

When you’re done you should have a jar that is easy to stir but not soupy. It’s definitely going to be thick. When ours has sat in the fridge for a few hours and the honey separates to the bottom you can see that there really isn’t much honey in there. Maybe like a 3:1 on root mix to honey.

Which means 3:1 is the handy thing to remember in all this.

At any rate, once you’ve filled your jars and stirred them all up, throw the lids on and put them in the fridge. They will keep for about a month, possibly more, we don’t know cause we always use it.

To use, take a spoonful and add it to your tea as often as you like. We only drink tea once a day in the evening before bed, but it certainly wouldn’t hurt to do it more often, you just have to remember that honey is a sugar and should be taken in moderation.

There are a whole host of things this stuff is supposed to help with from immune boosting to allergy relieving. I don’t know how much I believe all the hype, but it tastes good, it doesn’t hurt, and it’s easy to do.

I hope you enjoy.

~~~That’s one hour~~~

Fresh Food

Fresh Food

Tomorrow is shopping day. It’s been over two weeks and we are down to nothing. We could probably scrape by for another day or two if we had to, but pickings are slim. I never used to worry about shopping day, or even think about it really. If I forgot something on the list, no big deal, just grab it the next time I’m out or the following week when I go shopping again. Now it’s different. Trying to only go shopping every two weeks or less makes things tough.

There’s this added stress of being sure not to forget anything. There’s the added stress of getting to the store and realizing half the stuff you need isn’t available anyway. There’s the stress of going to multiple stores just to get enough food to feed your family of four for two weeks, especially with the limitations many stores are putting in place.

We run out of the fresh stuff right away, of course. And that’s fine. We can limp along on frozen veggies and fruit. Not as delicious and probably not as nutritious, but totally doable. Still, for someone like me who lives a nearly vegan lifestyle for most of the day, not having that fresh stuff starts to really wear on me. Like right now, even though I just had a bite of Lily’s Dark Chocolate, oh my god so good, I’m still craving raspberries.

Why raspberries?

I have no idea. They aren’t my favorite. I rarely buy them because they tend to go bad immediately whereas the other berries seem to last at least a week. But the lack of fresh stuff has me getting these crazy cravings.

The other day we had zucchini that was about a day from needing to be chicken feed instead of people feed, so I made these “brownies” with them…epic. So freaking good. It got my kids and husband eating veggies and it was amazing. So definitely making those again. But the thing that’s weird is that no one else craves the veggies and fruit like I do.

In the mornings I have a breakfast of veggies fried up in avocado oil with some garlic, salt, and pepper. Then I put kimchi or salsa on top. So delicious. But I’ve been told it’s not breakfast. Why not? Because it doesn’t have eggs. Pfft. It’s totally a scramble or a skillet or whatever you want to call it, sans eggs. And it’s delicious. And I crave it.

Luckily even without fresh stuff I can usually get away with canned beans and artichokes, frozen spinach and broccoli, and then I throw in either frozen corn or peas or whatever. It’s a super easy thing to cook, I can eat a ton of it, and it has been keeping me full through to early afternoon when I can usually get away with a snack of nuts or something to tide me over til dinner.

Because in addition to only going grocery shopping every two weeks or less I’m also trying to only eat two meals a day. If I get a late start on breakfast or a huge breakfast, it usually works. It lets our food go a bit further and if I do the late breakfast thing then it’s good for my body as a kind of mini-fast.

What changes have you had to make to your eating with this whole pandemic?

~~~That’s one hour~~~