Friday, November 10, 2017

Toddler Tantrums, Raw Milk, & Simple Food (7QT)

Happy Friday, friends! It seems like just yesterday that October began, yet here we are, in November. Life is pretty full over here, so I decided that today would be a great opportunity to jump in with some quick takes about what I've been up to lately. 

1. I recently bought raw milk for the first time, and I don't know how I'll ever be able to go back to the  cheap store bought milk. First off, the taste is completely different. I bought raw goat's milk, so it tastes a bit like goat cheese (which I think is delicious!), and it's naturally homogenized and so fatty and creamy. Secondly, in order to buy it, I drive to a nearby farm where I get to see tons of cute goats. Not only am I supporting a local farmer, but it's a neat chance to build community-the first time I went out there, I chatted with the farmer and she told me a little  bit about her life and goats. And she said that she supplies goat cheese to the restaurant Whisky Cake, which I think is totally cool. 

2. Netflix sent me one of those "We want you back! Here's a free month!" e-mails, so I excitedly watched The Defenders this week. I love the shows about Daredevil, but I hadn't seen any of the other shows. So, I was interested to see what Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Danny Rand were like. Well, here's what I thought about them: 
Jessica Jones seems to be perpetually annoyed/mad at pretty much everyone she talks to. 
Danny Rand is this rich kid who whines about his destiny and started to sound a bit like Prince Zuko, from Avatar: The Last Airbender
Luke Cage is bulletproof, which is pretty awesome, and he seems like a fairly nice guy. 

I didn't think the show was as good as Daredevil, but I really enjoyed it. I thought it was neat to see the lives of this different heroes intertwine, and I liked seeing further development with the storyline about The Hand. Also, while there were lots of dead bodies around, it seemed a lot less bloody than Daredevil. I had read that there was lots of sex content, but there wound up being only one sex scenein the whole season (and it was easy to skip). Yes, they could have done without it, but it wasn't nearly as bad as I had read it would be. The show gets two thumbs up from me, and I'm pretty stoked to see Daredevil Season 3, when it eventually comes out! 

3. Life with a toddler is wonderful, exhausting, unpredictable, and hilarious. Case in point: On Wednesday, I was interviewed for a pre-recorded hour of Morning Air, a show on Relevant Radio (I come in towards the end of this hour). Initially, I stood in the kitchen so that my toddler would be able to see me and be happy, but I needed to get to an area that echoed less, so I moved to the office and closed the door for some quiet. All was well, until right when I went on-air. Cue banging on the door. The host, John, loves kids and was like, "Hey, put your kid on-air!" so I opened the door, and the toddler came in. He ignored me for the first few seconds, because he was distracted by the office, and I was thinking, This is perfect, he'll be quiet and happy! (Famous last words, right?) 

But then it began
Screaming, yelling, banging on the chair because he wanted to sit on it. Trying to get off the chair. In desperation, I started breastfeeding him for some quiet, but after about 30 seconds he was done with that and went back to his yelling/screaming/climbing on me tantrum. All the while, I was trying-and failing-to remain coherent and actually pay attention to the questions I was being asked. I felt bad it wasn't the best interview out there, but at the same time, I did think it was kind of funny that of course all chaos would break loose, with my one child making the noise of 3 kids. Wednesday then proceeded to be one continual tantrum (his tantrum, not mind), but it was still a beautiful day, and he did calm down when we went grocery shopping, which was a relief. 

Exploring a new-to-us park!
The rest of the week has been very peaceful, and we've gone to parks and played at home and it's just been lovely, so I don't know what was happening on Wednesday (we did see his pediatrician that day and she was having a tough day too, so maybe there was just something in the air?). 

4. On the topic of pediatricians, this week I realized yet again how grateful I am for my son's naturopathic pediatrician. It's so refreshing to have a doctor who takes the time to go into the potential causes of different ailments and discuss various ways to get to the root of the problem, instead of just slapping medication or antibiotics on it. Plus, she's very supportive of empowering parents to learn, discuss, and make responsible choices for their child's care, and she's flexible with all sorts of lifestyles. In her practice, she has anti-vaxxers and people who fully vaccinate on the CDC's schedule, people who circumcise their boys and people who don't circumcise, and I love it. 

5. Lately, I've been trying to simplify food. I love food: I love preparing it, serving it to others, and eating it myself. However, I've found that sometimes, I'll over complicate things. I'll think that every meal "must" be elaborate or ornate. That every time I make chicken, I need to make some kind of gravy and mashed potatoes and other vegetables to go along with it. Or that every time we have noodles, I have to make some kind of special sauce for it. And while this is nice to do sometimes, I think it's good to have more elaborate meals for "special occasions" or a few times a week, and not necessarily every single day. So, I've been making lots of simple meals, and I'm learning to savor simple flavors:

Leftover spaghetti tossed in olive oil and Parmesan cheese. 

Mustard chicken thighs with skillet sweet potatoes and homemade bread slathered in honey butter. 

6. I've wanted to try my hand at homemade apple cider, so I finally made a batch! I loved how as this simmered in the slow cooker for hours, our kitchen started to smell a little bit like falltime :) I think it tastes fairly good, though the flavor doesn't hit me quite right-it seems a little too spicy and not apple-y enough, if that makes sense. I guess it's also hard to judge because I've only ever had store bought apple cider, and obviously homemade will taste different. 

7. Yesterday, I saw FALLTIME TREES!!! I know that there are trees that turn red-orange here in Oklahoma, but "falltime" in Oklahoma (or Kansas, for that matter) really just aren't the same as Fall in Ohio, New York, or Massachusetts (three places I've enjoyed during the Fall months). But yesterday, we drove out to the park in Harrah to spend time with friends who live over by that area (and I had heard good things about that park, so I was intrigued), and we saw some beautiful trees on the drive! It made me really, really happy. 

Thanks for joining me! Head on over to Kelly's place for more quick takes!


  1. I've never made real apple cider, but here I always make a hot-spiced-apple-juice which is a pretty good dupe for our Thanksgiving parties (I mean, it wouldn't fool a Michigander like me but for our Malaysian friends it's quite an unusual treat!) When my family first moved here in 2004, we had milk delivered by a local milkman on a motorbike--in two little bottles--the cream would rise to the top and would be quite a thick layer. That was definitely the thickest and creamiest milk I'd ever tasted!

  2. So interesting about raw milk! It is SO different like you said. Aw man, that must have been a rough interview, but glad he did well the rest of the week. How funny(not) when things happen at the same tie like that. And fall trees are just the best! So beautiful.

  3. I need to simplify our food. The problem is that we're trying to eliminate processed sauces and condiments, which means that I'm making that stuff from scratch which is the opposite of simple. I like your olive oil on spaghetti. Sometimes I throw in a little lemon juice and some slices of summer squash and zucchini with that.

    1. This is my issue. Doing without the processed junk = more work.
      The only thing that keeps me from going crazy is the freezer. I try to make things in double or triple batches and freeze the extra for later use.

  4. Oh man, those tantrums! They also hit at the worst possible moment. It’s terrible but funny. Yay for fall trees! And homemade cider!