Sloooowww Dooowwwwn.

Every once in a while I think about life in the big city. It’s not often, because I live in my own little bubble of fantasy world, so it generally happens like a ton of bricks smacking me in the face.

I’m not the only one who notices that we’re running ourselves ragged, am I? The city out-paces me on a regular basis, and sometimes it makes me dizzy. I often wonder, when I’m hit with that sack of bricks, why we choose to live this way. What are we sacrificing, as families, to have a full schedule? Why is having a full schedule important?

I’m in generally good health now, so I have more energy than I used to, but looking at other people’s schedules is still exhausting. Kindergarten, gymnastics, library time, picnic at the park, art class, trip to the zoo, whathaveyou. I can do one of those things a day and I know of people who frequently do all of them and more. I admire those people, but I know I wouldn’t be happy living like that.

The crux is that sometimes it feels like we’re expected to do all the things. There’s a certain amount of pressure to be a “good mom” by signing your kid up for all sorts of activities. I challenge that idea. Not only because I’m somewhat lazy, and I often don’t even have time to keep the house clean, but because we’re missing out on a lot by moving so fast. Especially if you’re moving fast because, well, everyone else is and you don’t want to be labelled a “bad mom”.

Here’s the thing: by and large, “good moms” and “bad moms” don’t exist (excluding abuse and neglect). We’re all just moms trying to do the best we can for our children. All of the choices offered to us as parents include the worry and fear of screwing something up. Vaccinate or not? Formula or breastfeed? Public school or homeschool? Organic or conventional? The list goes on. The stakes are high: you’re raising a person and your choices will affect them for the rest of their lives.

I say that, at least sometimes, we should take a step back from the bustle of the big city and just let kids be kids. And there’s no harm in allowing ourselves to enjoy our children: Suzy or Johnny won’t be harmed if we all just slow down and take the time to appreciate a lazy day (or week).

I guess all of this rambling is to say: don’t feel guilty for doing nothing with your kids all day. Don’t let anyone make you feel like you’re a “bad mom” if you skip the chores every so often: the mess can wait (and it will gladly do so).

On a final note, here is a video that I think of fairly often. Fair warning: there is one F-bomb in it so it is not safe for kids.

400 BABIES!

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Super Awesome Secret #1!

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You should know something: nut butters are amazingly easy to make.

All you need is a food processor and some nuts. You can get fancy by adding sweeteners or different kinds of oil, but most nuts turn into nut butter of their own accord when they’ve been ground finely enough. This goes for coconut as well.

I don’t know if you’ve ever seen the jars of coconut butter, or coconut cream you can buy in the store, but they’re pretty pricey most of the time. It’s much more economical to buy unsweetened shredded coconut and process it yourself. One pound will get you about a pint of coconut butter.

Here’s what you do:
Pour the shredded coconut into a food processor. Process until smooth.

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You’re welcome.

In the End…

I had a ton of ideas for what to write about this week. Time ran away from me and I didn’t have time to really sit down and write something that wasn’t rushed. Recipe posts are pretty easy, but I don’t have any pictures to accompany them yet, so that’s out. I was going to write about Hamlette’s birth, but that’s going to take a little bit of time.

I was productive though. I made an art for a good friend of mine, who is also Hamlette’s god-mother, to celebrate her birthday and the book she just published:

I learned that those La Croix sparkling waters make excellent mixers for kombucha. It works really well if your kombucha has fermented a bit too long: you can’t taste the sourness at all!

I also learned that going on a picnic is an excellent way to spend an afternoon thanks to my best friend. I will be going on more picnics this summer for sure!

My awesome mother-in-law took measurements of our front lawn in preparation for terracing. I’ll be happy to have a front-yard garden. I’m busy researching landscaping ideas for edibles as well as what kind of bricks to use and ideas for where the yard meets the driveway. Our driveway is sloped with the yard right now, so it will be an interesting problem to fix. I’ll figure something out, though.

It’s supposed to snow a lot this weekend, so I guess I’ll get time to work on it while I’m stuck inside.

Do you have anything big planned for the summer?

Chocolate Mousse.

IMG_0858I used to hate avocados. There. I said it. I feel like avocados are a strange food to dislike. Then again, my aunt doesn’t like chocolate, so I guess I’m not the only weirdo. Anyway, I don’t know what happened exactly, but after I had Hamling I loved avocados (and onions for some reason). I finally understood how my parents could just eat them with a spoon.

Now, after Hamlette, I cannot have enough avocado in my life. If there is something that has avocado in it or on it, I am far more likely to eat it than anything else put in front of me.

I also can’t get enough chocolate. Chocolate is the most amazing thing, it makes me happy to eat. Particularly truffles. AlterEco makes the best dark chocolate truffles I have ever had (from a store).

So here’s a recipe that is pretty much the best. But wait, avocados and chocolate? How could that possibly be good?

Oh, trust me, it is so good!IMG_0859

This also makes an excellent frosting or cake filling. This is the best paleo, vegan chocolate frosting you will ever make. On top of that, you pretty much can’t mess it up. It’s too easy to mess up. Which is great news for me because I fail at frosting on a regular basis.

Paleo, Vegan Chocolate Mousse

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy peasy
  • Print
2 ripe avocados
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  1. Place avocados, cocoa powder, maple syrup and vanilla in the bowl of a food processor. Process until smooth.
  2. Taste. If it isn’t sweet enough, add more syrup, or a spoonful of honey.

Store for up to 3 days in the fridge. If you make this ahead the vanilla will bloom as it sits in the fridge and it will be extra delicious.

Spring is in the Air.

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Spring is here! And with it, lots and lots of mud. Having a puppy is pretty great…

My in-laws and I started our seedlings a few weeks ago in preparation for this year’s garden. We started a ton of tomatoes, hot and sweet peppers, purple cauliflower, tomatillos, moon and star watermelons. I think that’s it. There are several other seed packets waiting for the last frost to happen, and some carrots, beets and parsnips to plant before the last frost.

We’ve been getting lots of moisture, which is fantastic! Because it’s been so wet I’ve got some volunteer spinach, an onion I tried overwintering, and garlic already growing. And lots of bindweed. Lots and lots of bindweed. I don’t mind telling you that I hate bindweed, with a passion. Bindweed is the honey-badger of weeds. It will not stop.

My cover crop I started failed pretty spectacularly last year, even though I started it pretty early. I forgot to water it enough, I think. Live and learn.

What are you planning on planting this year?