I have had ZERO inspiration for dinners for the past couple of weeks. Zero. I made a bunch of shredded chicken for tacos for Seth's grad party on the 15th...and then we lived off of the leftovers for the rest of the week. I'm not sure any of us want to see shredded chicken for a good long while. Chicken tacos, chicken nachos, chicken burritos...enough already!
I got out some london broil one night to turn into broccoli beef...then let it sit in the fridge too long...then couldn't use it because it wasn't fresh anymore...and ended up ordering pizza. Then chinese. Then burgers. Or I made mac and cheese from a box. Then I bought pounds of lunch meat and good hoagie rolls...and we lived on sandwiches for a week or so.
I kept telling my family I was going to cook...and then just couldn't bring myself to do it. And I figured out a few reasons why... One, my cue to cook is darkness. So in the summer I don't get my usual cue around dinner time since it doesn't get dark until 9 or so. Two, it's stinkin' HOT. And I don't like to cook when it's hot. And yes, we could have salads, but that takes prep and planning...both of which I haven't been doing either. (Not to mention my family isn't thrilled with just salad.)
I'm telling you...it's been a rough couple of weeks.
Well, today I was determined to make a dinner. I had defrosted a chuck roast yesterday and, of course, didn't use it last night, so I decided to make shredded beef tacos today using the crock pot. I seasoned the beef with chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, salt, paprika, cayenne, added a bit of water then let it do its thing in the crock pot for four hours or so.
When the meat was almost done I fried up some corn tortillas. Then I made up a delicious side to go on the tacos...I called it Mexican Slaw. Shredded cabbage mix, chopped avocado, chopped tomato, lime juice, salt, chili powder, garlic powder and cilantro. Mm mm mmm...it was really quite tasty. We put it on our tacos and it was delicious...but I'm thinking you could even just eat it on the side. You could also add black beans...or corn...or both. I will definitely make it again.
And now I feel the slump lifting...I'm feeling a bit of inspiration coming on...maybe even a menu plan. Who knows?
I am still here...and I survived all that's been taking place these past few weeks...Seth's graduation, family visiting from out of state, the house being painted, my husband installing floors, hosting a graduation party, wrapping up my job for the summer and getting ready for my new one come August 1.
Whew...it's been a whirlwind around here!
The biggest thing is that Seth graduated from high school...with honors no less. It was the hottest day of the year...108 degrees. Crazy hot. But the ceremony was short and sweet and Chris and my dad set up an EZ-Up in the bleachers. Thank goodness.
The grad party was the following weekend and it was a success...loads of chicken soft tacos with all the trimmings...cheese, tomatoes, guacamole, sour cream, salsa....a (really) big bowl of chips and bowls of fresh fruits. Mom made carrot cupcakes and I made regular cupcakes for dessert. We sat out in the backyard, eating, listening to music, sipping cold beverages (Aunt Lisa made homemade lemonade from her Meyer lemon tree...SO good) and enjoying one another's company. And...the weather was literally perfect that day. 80-something with a nice, cool breeze. It was a really good day...
The home improvements are amazing...I love all of our choices and am so happy with the outcome. In the process of redoing the floors we had to empty out the living room. And once we started bringing things back in I realized that I was liking the simplicity of less stuff. Granted, it was very full and cluttered before...16 years of gathering and arranging and adding without subtracting will do that. Every bit of space was taken up. Too much. So I decided to pair things down...bring things back in carefully and selectively. And I decided toget rid of what we don't need or want anymore. I'm calling it The Big Purge. And I mean it. I told myself it was going to happen this summer. I was going to give myself a week of rest after school got out and then get to work. But then I decided to just go for it...to just get in there and get it done. Why wait, right? And so that's what I'm doing. The to-go piles are growing and I am feeling a lot better. We'll have a big yard sale next weekend and whatever doesn't sell goes straight to our local thrift store.
As you can see...life is humming right along. And I am doing my best to keep up...
And maybe now that I'm off for a few weeks I will be better about spending some time here at Give a Girl a Fig. I miss this little space when I'm away for too long...
Today is the last day of school...for the boys, anyway.
Seth graduates on Saturday...I am stunned and thrilled all at the same time.
As a district employee my school year lasts a little longer...I work for the next two weeks and then my summer begins!
I have a to-do list that keeps getting longer and longer...summer "vacation" is a term I'm using quite loosely.
The next few days are crazy busy...anxiety inducing, if I'm honest. Reminding myself to breathe. And to take one thing at a time. Making lists and checking things off is helping a lot. It's not as much as it seems once it's listed out and dispersed over several days.
The forecast is hot, hot, hot for the next few days. Gonna do my best to stay cool...and calm!
11 Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you, 12 so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody. -1 Thessalonians 4:11-12