Sunday, June 19, 2011

Kinda Cool

It seems the weather's been unsettled here lately. Nothing too crazy (besides that hail a couple of weeks ago) but some rain and wind. We've had one bout of showers today, and it looks like there will be another rumbling through this evening. Did I put buckets over my tomatoes? You bet I did.

As a result of the changeable weather it's been kind of cool, so I thought this would be a good time to fire up the oven and get some cooking done. I don't have air conditioning, so I tend to not turn the oven on when it's hot outside. This worked out great and I cooked/made all the stuff above. I love Whole Foods pizza dough...

Isn't it funny how tasty the food photographers make food look? This is all yummy stuff, but my pizzas look pale, my brownies look like a tire, and the chili is just kind of blah. Oh well, you get the picture. Mr W and I also made strawberry freezer jam today, which is in the containers. It's pretty darn sweet, but was my first time doing it, so next time we'll back off. Can anyone weigh in on the nutrient content of freezer jelly vs. canned? It seems the nutrients in the cooked kind would be less, since the berries in the freezer kind are frozen fresh. I might can some strawberry jam, but with just me and Mr W eating it, I also might just wait and do the cooked peach jam like I did last year. That jam, the first thing I ever canned, was such a triumph in terms of being able to open the last jar a couple of weeks ago and have the satisfaction of having made the stuff.

It's been an interesting weekend as far as parenting goes. It seems like all Mr W wants to do is to play on the computer these days. We've gone around a few times this weekend about how he needs to develop other interests (I feel like a broken record) that he likes to do besides the computer. He gets touchy, I get annoyed, blah, blah, blah. How does one get their kid interested in a new hobby? He knows that I'd pay for him to take lessons in almost anything, but he doesn't want to try anything.

And yet, yesterday and today, we went out and did what I call "nature stuff". It's the activity I do when I'm out of ideas and need to punt. Yesterday, we packed a picnic and rode our bikes down to the park by the river. The river is flowing really fast, and it was cool to see it (from a safe distance). We ate our dinner at the park, and visited with the horses that are part of the city's nearby demonstration farm. We then rode downtown to see marimba players and met up with one of the ladies from the dog park, who knew the players and bought ice cream for Mr W (and me too!). It was a really good day.

Then today, we went north to Soapstone Prairie, which is this very cool short-grass prairie (or is it Short Grass Prairie?) that the city owns (even though it's an hour north of town). There's an archeological dig ongoing there, and we caught the tail end of a guided talk about it. Did a little bit of hiking, too. After we got back into town, he helped me cook, we went to the dog park, it was a good day. Maybe I shouldn't worry so much about it, but he needs to get together with his buddies more and I'll need to keep trying to help him find something he likes to do that doesn't have a screen involved.


  1. Those eats look plenty good to me!

  2. Now I have to find a recipe for home froze jam or jelly-which is which. I don't have any in the house at the moment and miss it,but everything in the store that does not cost a arm and a leg is like old rubbery jello-you have to pry it off your spoon.----lol

  3. Yup, if you don't mind a not-as-thick jam, nutritionally speaking the freezer jam is probably the way to go. Because of lack of freezer space, I tend to make cooked jam that is then water bath canned even though I think you do lose some nutrition through cooking/heating the fruit. I have found that I can cut the sugar content on canned jam quite a bit and still have it very palatable. But it will never get as thick because the sugar tends to be the thickening agent.

  4. Mama Pea, I knew you'd know! Yes, it doesn't seem as thick, but very bright tasting. I also thought, "nutrition-shmutrition, it's jelly. It's not like I'll use a more than a tablespoon or two at a time" Thanks!

  5. Yeah! "Very bright tasting!" That's a great way to describe freezer jam. I love the way it has the look and taste of fresh strawberries! (Okay, much sloppier, but still!)


Hi, sorry to make the humans do an extra step.