Tuesday, July 3, 2012

What I've Been Up To

Let's see......

  • Turning 30.  My birthday was the 22nd.  Paul surprised me the day before with a trip to the Wichita Zoo.  It was a perfect day (in a string of overwhelming heat).  We loaded up the van - literally.  We tried out the 8-passenger seating (our family of 5, plus Paul's parents and sister), and it wasn't bad for a 2+ hour trip.  He further surprised me by taking the day of my actual birthday off work.  We went to see my niece play softball and had dinner and cake and homemade ice cream (!!!) at my sister's house.

  • Garden.  I don't know how, with the extreme heat and almost complete lack of rain (less than an inch all month), but this is the best garden we've ever had.  Maybe because we've been able to control exactly how much and when the garden gets watered..... It seems like we'd get a complete deluge of several inches of rain in an hour, or a wind storm, or hail sometime in the spring or early summer to destroy my garden.  But we obviously haven't had any of that. 
  • Green bean totals.  Nearly 40 quarts of corn frozen as well.

  • Grilling!  I told Paul last Monday, after watching the weather forecast - 100, 101, 98, 99, 100, 103 - I was not going to be using the oven or the stove at all last week.  And I didn't (and still haven't), except for breakfast a few mornings.  We have had some definite food WINS.  

Grilled Pizza!  This is the "kids' pizza" (pepperoni and cheese).
My pizza, with decidedly more toppings.
Vegetable Medley:  Potatoes, carrots, zucchini (all from my or my in-laws' garden) with butter, salt, pepper, and paprika.  YUM. (Would have been even better had I not forgotten the onions!)

Smoked Bread.  Oh my goodness......

  • Hibernating.  (It's not just for cold weather.)  It's been near or exceeding 100 degrees for the last week, with it forecasting to be more of the same for at least the next 8 days.  (There is no outlook for rain for at least 2 weeks.)  Obviously it's too hot to take Zadie outside, at least until near sundown, and even then, she has to stay in the shade.  The boys want so badly to play outside, but they come in after 5 minutes, "Mommy, it's too hot."
Ugh.  It's bad when a big cooldown means temps in the low 90s.  And the rain "chance" is just to tease us.

  • Sleeping.  The heat is just completely taking it out of me.  I feel like I'm doing the bare minimum to get by until I can sleep again.  I'm finally finding the house under the mess, but that's only because we're having company tomorrow for Independence Day.  We haven't done school for a week, though.  But Paul has vacation next week, so maybe we'll get caught up then......


Carrie Roer said...

Happy birthday! Sounds like it was a great couple of days! My garden has been doing pretty well too, I agree that it's because I'm watering it consistently since we haven't had any rain. While my neighbors water their front lawns, I water my garden. ;) We're having record heat here in Michigan the next few days. Thank goodness for air conditioning and in-laws who live on a small lake! And those pizzas look AMAZING -- did you use a specific recipe? I'd love to hear about it! I'm not planning on cooking inside this week!

Rachel said...

I just used a recipe for breadsticks that I also use for pizza dough and pigs in blankets. I will say - "low and slow" is definitely the way to go on the heat.... We got impatient and added more coals, then burned it.
My recipe is:
1 c flour
1 pkg yeast
1 1/3 c hot water
3 tbsp oil
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp salt
3-4 c flour (additional)
(I use a mixture of white and wheat flour.)
Mix the 1 c flour, yeast, and hot water until smooth. Add oil, honey, and salt. Mix in as much of the additional flour as you can. Cover and let raise 45 min to 1 hr. Punch down and form into breadsticks (about 20) or pizza dough. Bake at 400 for 12-15 minutes. (When baking on the grill, you just kind of have to watch and wait.)

The Shupaloops said...

Happy birthday! Our summer sounds quite similar. Although I bet our 100 degrees feels exceedingly cooler than yours! Fingers crossed for some rain! We might get a drop today here, i hope we send it your way.

Kaleena M. said...

Ok, I need specific detailed instruction for cooking misc food outside. The oven heats up my tiny 30 foot trailer like crazy and I need cheap meals I can cook outside on a charcoal grill.... I have never really grilled anything but meat out and most of that was in my parent's gas grill so I am at a loss. We love pizza and stuff like that so I need instructions for dummies! You can fb message me if you like! I could use all the help I can get!