Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Summer Camp Lunch

It's still summer camp season!

Today's lunch has cold BBQ Chicken Thighs (boneless, left over from last night), green and yellow beans (fresh from the garden bed), local cherries, pita and grapes.
The pita was toasted, cooled and torn to bits.  Peanut reported that it did stay not soggy the last time we did this, so here's hoping it works again.  You can see the condensation that started forming on the grapes in the brief time they were out of the fridge.  Frozen juice boxes will hopefully help keep the lunch nice and cool.

Friday, July 22, 2011


Exactly how much sun screen do I need to use?

This is a question I ask myself a lot.  One year I slathered SPF 30 on, had lunch outside (45 min, tops) and came in with a lovely burn.

So, if sunscreen extends the time you can safely be in the sun before burning, I've got what, a little over a minute I can be in the sun at any one time?
My Darling Hubby bought me the "Keep out of direct sunlight" shirt from ThinkGeek for my birthday.

OK, but really.  How much?
According to this article, at least 2 Tablespoons for you body, and half a teaspoon for your face.  This other article says essentially the same thing.  Both of those talk about relative SPFs and have other tips.  I like the shadow rule myself:  If your shadow is shorter than you, head for cover.

But staying inside and/or out of the sun totally isn't going to cut it.  I want to be outside. (Maybe not so much this week.)  The other day I popped into a Dollar Store, and picked up a set of plastic measuring spoons:

Now I can squirt sunscreen into them, hand it to Peanut, and get her used to the volume that needs to be slathered on, and repeat as necessary. Pumpkin will still require some parental assistance, but still has a handy visual aid.  These things are going to live with the sunscreen bottles, and will be traveling to the beach with us this year, too.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Garden - Week 9

It's been hot here.  Hot, hot, hot.  How hot? Gabriel sums it up here:

The lettuces are still being harvested, and the beans in the raised bed have provided fresh veggies at three meals now.  The beans in the box on the deck are stunted.  They've been watered (with a watering can) in the morning every day, and I've tried to shade them from the sun at least a little to slow the waterloss a bit, but there just isn't any getting around it; that planter dries out fast. 

Stella the tomato plant and her friend are doing very well, and have provided tomatoes daily.   The oregano has begun flowering and is drawing lots and lots of big, fluffy, yellow bumble bees.  I'd go out there and try to take a picture, but it's too hot. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Whew, it's hot out there!

By the looks of the weather map, it's hot pretty much everywhere.  The news last night described a heat dome, and listed the cities under a heat advisory.

This week, Peanut is at a camp where there is forrest, and creeks, and swamp.  In fact, it's the one from last year, the one that started the whole litterless lunch quest!  Since it's (on average) 3 degrees cooler out there, plus there's water activities and lots more shade, I think this was a good week for her to go.  It can be hard to guess when you book these things in March.

Here is today's lunch:

Peanut has a mini yellow bell-pepper, stuffed with hummus.  I saved the 'lid', but things are packed so tightly there is very little chance of tipping or spilling anyway.  The pita was toasted and ripped into smallish pieces after it cooled.  Hopefully this will help prevent sogginess as the day goes on.  Lettuce (from the garden!) acts as a barrier between the pita and the veggies.  Green snap peas, some lovely grapes and local cherries round out today's lunch.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Day Camp Lunch

Today's lunch was packed by Peanut and Pumpkin!

They wanted a lunch that would be easy to eat while at their day camp.  The girls like to eat part of their lunch at the designated lunch period, and save some for after swimming, when they are absolutely starving.

The lunches have mini pitas, ham, and red pepper from the grocery store.  They also have cherry tomatoes, peas and lettuce from our garden.  All picked this morning, by the girls.  OK, Mommy helped. ;-)

Peanut decided to make a sandwich with two red pepper slices, ham and lettuce.  She decorated her lunch with a message written in snap peas.  Pumpkin arranged her lunch components in a manner she found pleasing.

Added to What's For Lunch Wednesday

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


No, it's not made with bunnies!  George is fine, thank you.  See?  Here he is with a friend the girls have named Dandelion:

The bunwich was the girls' lunch on Friday.  I was feeling very, very guilty last week.  The girls are at a day camp, also attended by friend-of-the-blog Evening Goose's son, Name-to-follow.  He's chosen a cool alias, but alas I can't remember it right now.

Anyway, Darling Husband had been preparing the lunches last week.  Friday came and we realized he'd done all of them!  This was not fair!  Plus, I had no new food content for the blog...

It's a sandwich.  Yes, for the girls who don't like sandwiches.  But it's on a bun!  Yes, a sesame seed topped bun.  It may even have come out of a bag with the word "Hamburger" on it. 

The bunwich is made with ham and garden fresh lettuce, and accompanied by a garden-fresh tomato. (From Stella! Yay!)  The girls also have green seedless grapes and slices of yellow bell pepper.  While we do have wild grape vines in the yard, we won't be getting grapes from them ever.  I may be able to harvest some leaves from them next year, when the vines are a little larger.

Update - July 13, 2011
Evening Goose's son goes by Sneopack.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Cute Culprit

Look at this guy:

Sweet, innocent little bunny-wunny, right?  A fluffy little bundle of Awwwwww?

Ha!  That's just what he wants you to think!

I was chopping some peppers for dinner the other night, and out of the corner of my eye, saw something brownish moving on the deck.  I startled it when I moved toward the door.  The soft brown thing bounded down the stairs and ducked around the yew tree.  I grabbed my camera, totally expecting to get absolutely nothing. 

Instead I found Mr. BigEyes here, pretending to be a bunny shaped statue near some clover.  Acting all innocent.  Like he knew nothing about the two (2!) Pea Knight plants that were now totally missing from the flower box on the deck.  Eaten all the way down!  GAH!

On the bright side, he doesn't like basil.  Or oregano.

(No, I don't know for sure if it's a boy bunny or a  girl bunny.)

Monday, July 4, 2011

Garden - Week 8

The lettuce are doing remarkably well.  We are still (!) able to harvest daily.  The second wave lettuce seeds are trying to sprout.  They grew 1 cm leaves, and stopped.

The Pea Knights have set their pods.  It looks like each vine will produce about two pods.  This is not a spectacular yield.  Then again, they are trying to grow in a window box.  The larger peas are also blossoming and setting pods.  Their average (so far) is three blossoms per vine, with hopefully all being pollinated and developing.  These vines are not quite to the three foot high mark,  so it's just as well we didn't staple the trellis all the way up.  I'm sure we would have infuriated more than one bird with it.

In other window box news, some of the bean plants are not doing well at all.  They've gone from green, to yellow-green, to pale yellow.  Definitely not happy.  Perhaps their roots are too hot?  Too dry? The other beans right beside them are happy, though.  I am perplexed. 
See what I mean?  This leaf is not the best example of pale yellow, but it is conveniently next to a healthier looking specimen.

The raised bed is performing quite well.  The tomato plants have lots of blossoms and a few green tomatoes.  The cabbages, broccoli and cauliflower are growing well, and the beans are recovering from what ever was eating the leaves. 

The oregano is continuing its path of garden domination.