Homemade Laundry Detergent: Squeeze does most of the laundering around here and I came to realize last week that he has been using 3 TBSP with each load. Ack! That might be why they smelled so super-fresh? When I wash, and I just measured what I was using, I put in 2 TBSP. I figured it was more than 1, but I didn't realize it was double the amount. I have yet to be able to experiment; and I managed to talk Squeeze down to 2 TBSP instead of 3. The one thing I can say with absolute confidence is this -- DIAPERS TAKE 4 TBSP. I didn't like how they smelled when I used 2 TBSP, so I doubled the amount. I am satisfied.
Food Today: I made granola, chicken stock, and my favorite soup, White Bean with Vegetables, Garlic, & Rosemary. I like it, I love it, I want more of it. Isn't that some kind of a fast-food slogan?? Gross.
Books: I finished Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver this past week. My goodness, but do I love this woman. And now I love her family as well. She has so much insight into life; things that when I read, I say, "YES!!" She is also a fan of Wendell Berry. She sighted him as a mentor in her Acknowledgements and said, "Everything we've said here, Wendell said first, in a quiet voice that makes the mountains tremble." Wow. As I've said before, Wendell, Wendell, where have you been all my life? And Barbara, I'm so glad to have your essays. I haven't read much of her fiction writing, but her non-fiction rules heavily.
She inspired my interest/intrigue with not only heirloom varieties of vegetables and fruits, but also heritage animals, like the Bourbon Red Turkeys she raised with the end-goal of establishing a breeding flock. She also made "putting away food" for the winter sound enjoyable and exciting, not the drudgery that people might think it is. The little experience I've had with it, I have thought was very fun and rewarding. My hope and desire to follow in her footsteps and be able to put enough by to feed us throughout the year. I certainly have the fervor for it! But she doesn't just leave it to, "Move into the country and grow your own food." Certainly not everyone can do that. She encouraged the masses to buy in season and locally grown produce, dairy, and meats. With the amount of Farmers' Markets out there, and technology like freezers, this is definitely possible. Or be like my friend, Lyndi, and go with a CSA; you'll be supporting small farmers and getting top-of-the-line produce as well.
I can't urge you to read this book enough; it was thrilling. So interesting, packed full of humor and intriguing side-stories, and best of all: encouragement. As a nation, we really need to learn to eat differently. So much of our food is hyped up with preservatives and anti-nutrients. We eat from boxes, cans, packages, and bags. Truly, we are completely disconnected with where our food comes from. And what a shame! Our culture of eating has been built through many decades and several generations: too much work, not enough life. Preparing food takes time, but so does enjoying it (or it should). We need to work our way back to knowing how to cook, not just how to unwrap a factory-processed, preservative-packed, piece of crap pot-pie or pizza and pop it in the oven. It takes time, but the tides must be turned.
Pregnancy: My uterus has been tightening more noticeably with greater frequency within the last couple of days. Your guess is as good as mine as to when it will actually happen, though. I have another meeting with our midwives on Tuesday, as does Thelma Cheddar, if she has lasted that long. Poor woman, if she does. My official due date is October 24.
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