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July 6, 2011

Un-slumping and goals

Do you all get in a slump with cooking?
I do. I have to consciously decide in the morning or the day before what I'm fixing for dinner, and I have to admit sometimes I fail at planning and even getting dinner on the table.
Part of the problem is that I let myself get busy and lack of planning results in leftovers ("again??"), and another part of it I realize is a lack of setting down and following specific goals. I can't say "I want my family to eat the best food possible", and then drop the ball (anymore).
So, in an effort to formalize my goals here goes:
*We need to intentionally have variety every week (beef, poultry, lamb, seafood, pork), with enough leftovers so that when working the kids get really good food (and we get good stuff in our lunch bags).
*I need to use fermented foods more often, which of course means learning to prepare more of them.
*I need to change up and learn a few more recipes: prevent burnout and slump.
*I need to perfect a few dairy recipes so there is no temptation to buy store-bought (cream cheese, sliced sandwich cheese).
*I need to dig deeper to find a local source of produce to supplement what we can't/don't grow (mushrooms are one item located an hour away, but I have never been to the farm).
*Buy quality ingredients in bulk, and prepare (bread, pasta) in bulk so I don't have to bake weekly or give in and buy store items (not baking at all right now because of the heat, but will in a few months).

What do you do to un-slump your kitchen/nutrition routines?
I will be researching recipes and welcome your input. I will try to post a couple of new favorites each week. Ah, yes, that would be another goal--blogging with intent and purpose to stay connected to this great community!
I have accomplished a few things this summer like cleaning out some cabinets and the computer room...much more to do on that front but it feels good to get some done.

Things on the farm are going well! The garden appreciates the extra watering and we are now harvesting a few tomatoes a day. Three times in the last week we have gotten a little shower, wonderful respite! The fall garden is in the planning stages. My planning it does not make fall come any sooner I have noticed.
The cows are being synchronized for Artificial Insemination (AI), Vera this week and Lizzie next week. The calves are being prepared for their new homes--vaccines, blood tests, intermittent halter training. I will miss their spunk and sweetness (you know which is which)! We are bartering a future dairy heifer for a beef steer, he arrived this morning. His weight is 880#, so he needs a few more months to finish out before freezer camp.

The hens have adjusted well to the portable pens, and have started laying again. Next week we anticipate the arrival of the new peeps (35 meat birds and 15 little layers). New peeps are so much fun! The brooder is all set up and waiting. The ducks have carried us through the egg slump, some days the 3 hens have produced 4 eggs. There is peace in poultry land now that each group has their own area and the number of dominant males has been decreased. We won't be ordering any turkeys after all, time and space have have limits so we will try and find one to buy for the holiday dinner, and will make do with chicken and duck.

Our precious granddaughter Rylee was here for 3 weeks, oh the adventures! We are already looking forward  to her next visit, hopefully it will be sooner than next summer.

Wishing you all a great week!