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Monday Musings: 07.22.2013 Edition July 22, 2013

Posted by Toy Lady in Garden, meal plan monday, Musings.

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So here we are, deep in the Dog Days of summer!

Wow, have we had some heat around here!  Temperatures have been right around 90 most of last week, and they’ve only just dropped down to something manageable.  It’s been feeling downright tropical around here!

Speaking of tropical .  . . a few weeks ago, I decided to try to root a pineapple top. I’ve never done it before, though my grandmother used to grow pineapples as houseplants for as long as I can remember.

I must admit, though, it doesn’t seem to be doing much.  But I”m going to take that as a good sign – after all, it’s alive!  It seems that my house is, for the most part, where houseplants come to die.

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After our minimal trip to the supermarket this morning, I rounded up Peeps and his mom, and we went picking blueberries.

Since I still have some berries left in the freezer from last year, I tried not to get too carried away.  But I will admit, this is shaping up to be a fantastic year for blueberries!  They’re plentiful and sweet and just gorgeous!

I’m going to try dehydrating some – I don’t know how it’ll work, but it’s worth a try, right?
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The same goes for the 5 pounds of apricots we picked in, oh, about 5 minutes.  The trees were LOADED!  And I so love my apricot preserves, too!


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Do you ever just sort of get to the end of the week, and it’s Saturday, and it’s hot, and you’ve been running around all day, and you’ve got a fridge full of leftovers, and you’re tired and you just don’t feel like thinking about dinner?  But you REALLY don’t feel like just reheating leftovers?

Yeah, that’s pretty much every Saturday around here, too.

Do you know that you can pretty much toss anything into pasta?

We cooked up a pound of spaghetti, tossed together a quick lemon cream sauce (er, basically lemons and half & half), then tossed in the leftover grilled salmon and some leftover fresh peas, and BAZINGA!   Tasty, tasty dinner PLUS getting stuff out of the fridge.

Pay no attention to the two lunch-sized containers of leftover pasta, though, okay?

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How about a garden update?

Do you see this?  It’s red!  The main reason I’ve been planting cherry tomatoes lately is that they come in so much earlier than “real” tomatoes – and at this point in the season, ANY fresh, ripe tomato is more than welcome, as far as I’m concerned!

I refuse to buy over-priced, under-flavored out-of-season tomatoes, and by the time they start appearing in the farmers’ markets, well, I know my own tomatoes will be here soon, so I just usually make myself wait.
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After all, doesn’t this beauty look worth waiting for?

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And, as long as we’re in the garden – LOOK!  Potato flowers!

I’ve never actually grown potatoes in my garden before, but the potato lady at the market tells me that the blossoms mean the plants are starting to form the potatoes underground.  And once the plants start dying, then it’s time to harvest.   I’m already getting excited!

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The brown-eyed Susans seem quite happy next to the composter, wouldn’t you say?

Alas, so do the weeds.  Eh.



And once again, it’s time for the weekly menu plan.  The heat wave has finally broken, at least for now, so we plan to enjoy it.    We do love grilling when it’s not too hot – plus it makes for quicker cleanup!

Monday – We’ve got some mild Alaskan whitefish that will be nice (and quick) on the grill. Nothing fancy, probably just a little salt and pepper.  Maybe we’ll chop some fresh herbs – goodness knows  I’ve got ’em to burn!  We’ll steam some barley to go with the fish (why not?) and something green – either salad or beans.

Tuesday – It is supposed to rain Tuesday, so that’s the perfect night to clear some stuff out of the fridge – specifically, the better part of a lamb roast . Peeps suggested hash, which we can easily do, including the rest of the leftover peas.  I may even poach an egg or two, if I’m feeling ambitious!

Wednesday – We’ve got some pork chops that we’ll grill, then finish with some of the mole sauce I made last summer. Rice alongside, ideally Mexican rice, but more realistically, probably just plain white rice.  Salad?  Perhaps.

Thursday – On our “Eat Me” list is some of Peeps’s smoked brisket from last summer.  After all, it’s smoking season again, so it only makes sense to get rid of last year’s stuff first, right?  Probably some mashed or pan-roasted potatoes, and maybe some kale.  I’m getting tired of even thinking about green beans!

Friday – And again, it’s Kong and pizza night!  I wish I could plan on fresh tomatoes, and maybe I’ll be able to slice some cherry tomatoes, but more likely, it’s going to be just herbs and good olive oil and cheese. Not a bad pizza at all, if I do say so myself.

Be sure to click on over to The Organizing Junkie’s Monday Menu Plan post for loads and loads of other ideas.




1. Judy Norton - July 24, 2013

Oh I just love your garden! The little tomatoes should be delicious and you will have a ball digging up those potatoes when it is time. Heat can drain the oomp out of a lot of us and I hope it will cool down some. The market trip always makes me smile and yes, you plant is still alive. Thanks for a good read as always. Have a good week and how is Kitty?

Toy Lady - July 25, 2013

Judy, I am SO EXCITED about tomatoes! And, of course, potatoes – I don’t think I’ve ever grown potatoes. My mother put some in, too, and she’s been cheating – she’s digging them up and enjoying new potatoes. I’m tempted to do the same.

Kitty is doing quite well – we’ve been doing a little clicker training during morning treat time – after all, there’s no such thing as a free lunch, so she can just DO something for all those treats, right? 😉

2. Karen - July 24, 2013

I tend to kill indoor plants as well – not intentionally – I either over or under water, misjudge light needs, etc. Our garden was crappy this year. When the temps are in the high 90’s with your heat index in the 100’s it’s just not good. I’m looking forward to late October/early November when the temps finally cool off. Unfortunately I’m not joking. It just keeps getting hotter and staying longer. We’re usually eating tomatoes by June and continue through late August. The birds have discovered our plants and we get nothing but pecked through fruit. My husband has managed to actually get about 5 figs off our fig tree. Just so disappointing. I’m glad yours is doing well – I can have a garden through you. Thanks.

Toy Lady - July 25, 2013

Oh, Karen, I just would hate to think about that kind of heat – we’re positively wilting here after about 85 – and we almost never get anything over 90 for more than 3 or 4 days at a time. I’ll definitely think twice before complaining about knee-high (or more!) snow! 😕

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