A bit about me and this blog


Hello!  Many of you visiting today are new here, so I’d like to formally introduce myself and my blog.  Relax, grab a cup of coffee, and try to catch your breath if you have children hanging off of you.

I live in St. Louis, Missouri.  South county, to be more specific.  I live with my husband Tom, and with Picasso, who is 5 and in Kindergarten, and Cassatt, who is 3 and started preschool this year.  That means I have two child-free mornings each week!  Mornings that go by all too fast with cleaning, errands, laundry, meetings, Bible study, and I try to fit some writing in there too.

I am active in a local MOPS group.  My time there is a chance to breathe.  Picasso is upset this year that he doesn’t get to go, and I am still adjusting to picking up only one child from childcare!  I am the fundraising chair for our MOPS group, which keeps me busy at the beginning of each semester (and during fundraising time, which is now.)

I am also heavily involved in CHADD (Children and Adults with ADHD); I am the coordinator of our local chapter.  So I am working hard to spread the word, and somewhat overwhelmed by how big and separated our city really is.  It’s amazing how much work goes into marketing!  Hats off to those who do it well on a small budget.

Once upon a time, I went to law school. I had my own law practice, where I practiced family law and advocated for families working through the IEP process at school.  My license is currently inactive, as my life is too busy to practice right now.  I do keep active with my advocacy work through CHADD, however.  For a while, I had a series on the Advocating for your Child on this blog.

For now, I write.  Most of my writing right now is short fiction, which you can read over at my other blog, Fiction as Life.  I have been published in MOPS’s Hello Darling blog, and have a poem that will be published in When Women Waken in early November.

IMG_20140715_084342This blog is a haphazard mix of posts.  If you stick around, you will find I am not very consistent with posts.  I have made a commitment recently to post more regularly, please help keep me on track with that!  I post everything from kitchen how-tos to posts about my family and my garden to advocacy posts.  I have posted a few times about Ferguson, which is very close to me and appeals to my yearnings for justice.  For the most part, however, I stay away from political posts.

Now you know about me, I would love to hear about you!  What are your hobbies?  What would you like to see more of on this blog?



Mint Leaves

Can you spot them?

I looked deep into my garden yesterday, underneath the sunflower, cucumber leaves and trailing pea plants.  What was that weed that is growing so fast?  It is in the back row, where I don’t pay as much attention because I have to go into my neighbor’s yard to see past the tomato plants.

That weed. It was growing so fast! And then I realized: I had planted mint in that square.  It is not a weed, only growing like one.

What am I going to do with all that mint?  I have enough to make an entire mint-themed dinner, from appetizer to dessert!  This looks like an excuse for a party.

Mint and Pea Pesto

Princess and the Pea Pesto

Strawberry Mint Lassi

Spring Peas with Mint

Asparagus and Mint Risotto

Junior Mints Cupcakes

Junior Mints Cupcakes

Do you have any favorite mint recipes?

Garden Update

My Garden is growing like wildfire!  It is exciting to see it grow every day.  Based on the blossoms,  I am going to have much more come from it than I imagined.  It’s hard to believe that what started from a tiny seed has grown into a rain forest, with so many layers that I have to dig down to get to the bottom layers for my daily salad.  Yes! I have enough lettuce that I am having fresh salad every day.



Lettuce, Tomato, Marigolds, Cucumber

Here is just some of the garden.  You can see the tiny watermelon plant, the carrots, tomato plants, lettuce, marigolds, and the cucumber vine intruding into the picture.


Zucchini Blossom

Zucchini Blossom

Here is the zucchini.  I think the huge yellow blossoms are so pretty!  Since I took this picture, about 10 more zucchini blossoms have emerged.  You can also see a red lettuce plant next to the zucchini.  I haven’t been eating from this one, and it has grown big!

Cassatt under a leaf in the garden

Cassatt hiding under a sunflower leaf

Here is cassatt peering down into the tomato cage of one of my tomatoes.  I love how he is hiding behind a sunflower leaf here.  You can see some zucchini blossoms, the cucumber, and some tomatoes here too.

This is the cucumber plant


And this is the behemoth cucumber plant.  It has really taken over!  It’s leaves cover some smaller patches — lettuce and basil — but fortunately they are growing well.  The basil may not be doing as well as if it had more sunlight, but it is still growing.  It is amazing that what started as a cucumber seed grew into this so quickly!

Tom is not a vegetable lover, and he is not as excited about the harvest as I am.  I am already starting to plan how I will preserve some of this for winter!


15 Things to Do with a Cucumber


Cucumber Recipes

15 Summer Cucumber Recipes

Cucumbers are not my favorite vegetable.  I don’t mind eating them, but our family rarely finishes a cucumber before it goes bad.  Some of that is because Tom usually will not eat them. More often, they get relegated to the back of the refrigerator, only to be found after they are past their prime.

We regularly get cucumbers from our vegetable co-op.  And because they are easy to grow, we are growing cucumbers in our garden this year.  We are going to be overrun with cucumbers!  In preparation for this, I have put together a list of 15 things to do with a cucumber.  I have included some of my own recipes in this list, and have compiled a number of others that look so yummy that I must try this summer. Disclaimer: I have not tried the recipes yet! With this list, I expect I will run out of cucumbers this year!

How I Freeze Strawberries (so they don’t clump)

In the spring and summer, when fruit is at its peak, I love to freeze some to have throughout the year.  Strawberries, blueberries, and peaches are my favorites.  And now that I have a new freezer, I can freeze even more.

People sometimes tell me that their berries always clump and are hard to use.  Keeping them from clumping takes an extra step, but it’s really easy.

I start with a carton of strawberries.

Carton of StrawberriesIf you notice (I did not at the store, of course), one of them has a big brown spot.  Since I didn’t intend for these to be “pretty” strawberries anyway (I’ll probably use them in pancakes or smoothies), I cut it out when slicing the strawberries.

I wash the strawberries,

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then I cut them.

I lay them out before I freeze them.  I put a sheet of waxed paper onto a baking sheet, and spread the cut strawberries on the sheet.

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I freeze them on the baking sheets for several hours

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And I have a bag of berries ready to use this winter!

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New Freezer!

For Mother’s Day / my Birthday (/ anniversary) this year, my husband got me a chest freezer.

Romantic, right?

Even so, I am soo excited to have it.  My freezer currently holds a lot, but it is packed to the brim and we are getting into summer, when I like to freeze fruit to use throughout the year.  Maybe I’ll even have room to freeze vegetables from my garden!  (If we have that much.)

They delivered it yesterday.  Of course, hubby realized after they called to say delivery was in 30 minutes that we can’t plug it in to the same outlet as the washing machine.  He solved the problem with an extension cord.

Here is the new freezer:

Freezer Image

New Freezer!

There is not much in it yet.  I got a few things on my trip to Aldi today to put in there. I also put tonight’s dinner leftovers in there, to take to church for shut-in’s.


I am glad to have more room now!  The freezer in the kitchen is completely full.


I’m going to have fun organizing!

Granola, the Cereal

It’s early in the morning–cereal time.  And I’m reading about sugar cereal, Magic in Every Box. Mmm, delish.

My new-found cereal obsession is granola.  My favorite is one I order from my food coop, and it is super-duper-awesome.  And, I believe, not at all healthy, based on the sugar content.  Still, I manage to eat three bowls some mornings. It is that good.  (And I refrain from growling when the kids ask for some, yes, I do.)

I have found one at Aldi that I love, too.  They were out at my last visit, though, and it is marked as “seasonal”, so I may not be able to get it until next winter.  Oh, the horror!

If all else fails, I make it myself.  This is a good project for the kids to help with, too.  No matter how much they stir out of the bowl, it still turns out good.  It is easier to clean up, too, compared to, flour or egg on the counter.  Here’s my recipe, in case you’re salivating.

Sarah’s Granola

3 cups oatmeal (old fashioned or quick cooking)
1 cup coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
1 cup nuts (almonds, walnuts, pecans, cashews, whatever you have on hand, or some combination)
1/3 cup oil
1/2-1 cup sweetener (sugar or maple syrup.  Amount to taste and depending on whether your coconut is sweetened)
Some people add raisins, but I don’t like raisins after they’ve been baked so I generally leave them out, or add them after baking.

Mix everything together and bake at 250 for about 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes so it browns evenly.



What’s on my menu?

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