It's a beautiful day here in upstate NY.  If you look past the (still) freezing temps at night, it was near 60 yesterday and should be in the 50's today.  That, to me, is a beautiful day.  I hope this finds you and your family holding up well.

new gardening materials were delivered!
We have been getting a lot of to-do's around the house checked off.  And for some reason, my husband is suddenly gung-ho on whatever I suggest we do next so I'm going with it.  We discussed the garden re-do again this week and the next thing I know we were headed to load up on free compost from our neighboring town and a local hardware store was delivering materials to build more raised garden beds. Well, we've got some work to do!  We will eventually need to get more compost but for now we'll focus on building the beds so we can determine how much more we need.

We did go grocery shopping just over a week ago.  I really didn't want to go so I waited until the end of the week when we really were in need.  It has been a month since we went last.  There weren't a lot of choices for the most part.  No rice, pasta, flour, boxed or frozen mac & cheese (Jay likes this), spaghetti sauce, sugar, toilet paper, cleaning supplies or Kleenex.  We have all of those on hand but it was so strange to see the shelves still, a month into this, completely bare.  There was cereal, produce, cheese and non-dairy cheese but a much smaller selection.  I was excited to get some greens, oranges, apples, mushrooms and cilantro as well as cheese for Jay.  Jay wanted canned hash (that stuff is awful smelling....) so I was able to get the last 2 cans and I got the last 2 bottles of unscented dish soap.  Dried beans were sold out so I was able to get canned black beans that have no added salt.  I have other dried beans on hand, I just wanted some black beans.  I am grateful that we are able to go.  With so many people struggling during this time I have to remind myself to express gratitude for the ability to go and get what we need or want.

Around The House - my bathroom floor is installed!!!!!  Woo hoo!!!!  We've owned this flooring for 2 years and it was FINALLY installed.  I'm so excited.  Touch-up painting in the kitchen was completed, and we are in the process of moving garden tools, freezers, and such around between the barn, shop and shed.

We're planning on painting the dining room next (we have the paint, just haven't done the work, although now I'm doubting the color.....).  sidenote:  do you have a spouse who is opinionated on the paint colors?  Well, I do.  Now normally this is a good thing. I mean, at least he cares.  But it becomes more difficult when it comes to things like wall colors, especially since I don't (nor does he) enjoy changing them.  He wants bold color and I want muted earth tones (he says that's boring - whatever.  I LIKE boring...).  He likes the color it is currently - a pine green.  I do not.  It's too small of a room for that color, it makes it too dark.  I want something like "gatherings" by Magnolia Home (seen here).  We currently have a dark olive green paint that I love, but I don't think I love for this room.  I'm not overly excited about it so maybe it will change.....

I had wanted to paint the living room (keeping the same color, just to freshen it up) this spring as well but we do not have the paint and I have no interest going into the store to have it mixed.  Maybe in the fall or winter.

blueberry sourdough muffins
In The Kitchen - I have loved being able to spend more time in the kitchen.  I'm trying to work in some of the new recipes I've wanted to try since I have the time to do it.  Of course, I'm limited by what ingredients we have on hand.

Saturday we had blueberry sourdough muffins (and coffee) I made with my sourdough discard, honey, and frozen blueberries.  They were yummy!  I started with a found recipe, as I often do, and it was ok.  So, again as I often do, I tweaked it and was successful in making it more moist and tender.  I'll share the recipe soon.  For lunch it was nachos and salad (an odd combination, I know) and dinner was chicken with orange sauce, broccoli and rice for Jay and southwestern rice and broccoli for me.

Sunday was blueberry muffins and coffee again for breakfast and leftovers for lunch.  For dinner it was pizza night so I used the No Knead Bread recipe (see below) for the crust.  Jay's toppings were mushrooms, onions, peppers, cheese and pepperoni.  Mine were sautéed mushrooms & onions, olives, and non-dairy cheese.  Jay also had air fryer chicken wings (they turn out super crispy!)

I've made new notes on the super easy No Knead Bread recipe.  I've been using it to make hamburger rolls, brat rolls, philly cheesesteak (and mushroom cheesesteak) rolls, dinner rolls, etc.  They are chewy, slightly crunchy, and absolutely delicious.  We also started using it to make pizza.  It works really well!  The dough is super easy to make.  I measure out the ingredients in the evening when I'm doing dinner dishes.  Then, right before I go to bed I combine them to mix up the dough.  It then is completely ignored, sitting on the kitchen counter, until I need to use it the next day either for lunch or dinner.  It's really a versatile dough.

In The Coop - the coop girls are doing well.  Egg laying has decreased, I'm not sure why.  We went from a dozen eggs a day to anywhere from 4-8 per day.  They are loving the weather these days and spend most of their hours foraging and enjoying any sunshine we receive.

In The Garden - seeds are planted!  I have been planting all of the seeds that are safe in our colder temps and hope to finish this week.  The raised beds that need to be built will be used for the seeds and starts that I can't plant until late May.  I usually don't get seeds in the ground early (rather, on time) so I'm grateful to have the time this year to do it.

Our daffodils are about 3 inches above ground, the fruit trees have little buds developing, the azalea bush is ready to explode in color and still no sightings of the most anticipated vegetable of the season, asparagus.  Our yard is fairly well shaded so almost everything we plant is weeks behind everyone else's plants in our area because of it.  No complaints here - it makes it so much more tolerable to work outside in the summer.

Jack a.k.a. Mr Naughty Pants (no, he's not supposed to be outside)
Jack & Oliver - they are doing well.  Jack is playing nice at the moment, for the most part.  (crossed out because this morning he went on a rampage chasing Oliver around and acting like a jerk - back to his old self....) Sometimes he just can't help himself.  We haven't been able to open the house windows this week so he's been bummed about that.  It hasn't been warm enough for much deck time for Oliver this past week either, although he did have a lot of deck time yesterday.  They both get a little stir crazy without that fresh air.

A quick thanks - For those of you who are deemed essential workers, thank you.  Particularly those who are first responders and healthcare workers, I have nothing but gratitude for each and every one of you.

I'm hoping you had a wonderful weekend as well and that you are able to enjoy the time at home.


Kathy said...

Looks like you are both keeping busy around your place. Have a good week. Kathy, Brisbane, Australia

daisy g said...

Sounds like you have a lot going on! And yes, definitely get J going while he is in the mood. Whoo-hoo! I love projects being crossed off the list!

Could y'all agree on two colors and paint the bottom half a darker shade and the top half the lighter shade? I've seen this done as it is said to "ground" the room while keeping it light and airy. Just a thought.

It's surprising that you don't make your own dish soap, as you are a soapmaker!
Glad you were able to find so many things on your list. Yes, it is strange to see bare shelves. Now we know what generations before us dealt with in times past.

Can't wait to see the updates on the new garden beds, the tweaked recipes and everything else y'all are up to.
Stay well!

Staci at Life At Cobble Hill Farm said...

Kathy - thank you! Yes, busy indeed.

Daisy - great suggestion!! Thank you. Dish soap is a liquid soap which is a different process (and lye) then hard soap and, at this time anyway, we are not making liquid. :)