Bake It While You Can

I made these brownies last week as part of my continuing campaign to only eat sweets if I make them myself. They disappeared in a flash. At first, the little kids said they didn’t like them. I think they were overwhelmed by the richness. But I’m pretty sure that by the end, everyone was eating them.

Brownie batter

Brownie batter


Right before going in oven

Right before going in oven

I did not try to hide any spinach in them, like I was thinking about, simply because I didn’t have any. One of these days…

The brownies are all I really remember about last week. My oldest had baseball pictures Thursday night and baseball games Friday night and Saturday afternoon, so I spent a lot of time at our town’s lovely central park/fields/pond/playground (Knight Park). Mother’s Day, we had gorgeous weather and we were all outside much of the day. I got to sleep in til 9:30 and then take my daughter on a nice long walk. Later I helped my oldest and his friend try to set up the ant farm again, but some pieces had disappeared in the interim. Hopefully we can order them. We also had the first get-out-the-garden-hose-and-spray-each-other event of the season. Dinner was at my parents’ house and featured a lasagna ordered from a restaurant so the cooking was minimized. I did not get my mom anything for Mother’s Day… she got me a packet of wildflower seeds 🙂

I’ve been trying to get some spring cleaning/organizing done before it gets too hot. So far I’ve washed a lot of windows with my citrus-infused vinegar spray and hosed down some screens outside. I desperately need to steam-clean the family room rug. The bedrooms all need a thorough cleaning. I also need to bite the bullet and put all the winter clothes away. Everyone’s winter and spring clothes are all over the place, and my bedroom remodel is still going on, so all my clothes are still in the kids’ rooms… I keep saying that I will do it when my bedroom is done, but it occurs to me that the remodel might go through the summer… Also, my middle child changes his clothes six times a day, so in the playroom there is a big pile of his clothes that were each worn for about 20 minutes, which renders them not quite dirty enough to wash but not so clean that I want to put them back in the drawer. He also refuses to wear short sleeves/shorts, which makes me hot when I look at him and thus that much more crazy.

Maybe he is in denial over summer. I know I am! I still don’t have my son signed up for camp. I am simultaneously super excited for and super afraid of our trip to Vermont that’s planned for the first week in August. We haven’t traveled much as a family, and definitely never so far away before. I’m dreading the 90-degree days and the drone of our big wall unit air conditioner. We were thinking of also spending a week at the Shore (Jersey, that is), but we might have to spring for central air instead (for just the downstairs).

On the bright side, I’m looking forward to working in the veggie garden and planting flowers. The tomato plants are doing nicely in their tray AND two pumpkin seeds have sprouted. I planted some lettuce and onion seeds directly into the garden, but I suspect they were eaten.

Sometimes I wonder if my Irish and Italian ancestors are annoyed with me. “You know that we crossed the ocean on a boat to GET AWAY from farming and living off the land, right?” I certainly have read enough Laura Ingalls Wilder and Willa Cather et al. to know there is nothing romantic about farming. I wouldn’t want our lives and livelihoods depending on what goes on in that plot of dirt back there. But that’s our modern project: save the best of the old ways and synthesize them with the new.

One last thing: I really want to buy this painting. I need someone to give me a reason not to, besides the fact that it isn’t in my budget. Shouldn’t I support the arts?

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