seven nothings

1. About the book I’m still working on: I need to write—I want to write—but the topics are so big. I can’t even get a handle. Plus, plugging away yields diddlysquat which makes me get frustrated before I even start. So I don’t. Instead I write blog posts. 

2. There is no chocolate in this house. Also, no ice cream. This state of affairs is completely and irrevocably unacceptable. Why is it that the last few times I’ve been in Costco I’ve suffered a bout of virtuousness that caused me to waltz right by the snack section with nary a second glance? WHAT AILS ME? Could I really not be bothered to contemplate the suffering I would be afflicting upon my future self if I didn’t pause for ONE SECOND to fling a bag of empty calories into my boat-cart? Apparently not. And thus the reason I’m now cramming my face with a Nutella and peanut butter graham cracker sandwich. Desperate times, desperate measures and all that.

3. My older daughter and her horse got hired to do our little neighbor girl’s birthday party. The plan was to give rides to all the little party goers, but then my daughter thought the little girls might like to groom the horselike a real My Little Pony—so she bought some glitter and ribbons to take along. She’s been gone for three hours now, and I only heard a child cry once. Assuming a) a hurt child making noise is a positive sign, and b) the adults standing around in the driveway didn’t move, then c) everything is fine.

4. On this morning’s run, I tasked my husband with not letting me walk up the big hill at the end, so while I struggled to breathe, he gave me a speech about all the qualities he’d like to have in his new truck. He was so boring that slowly killing myself felt like a pleasurable experience. I didn’t stop once.

5. Have you ever bought the Extra-Sharp Provolone cheese from Costco? Well, don’t. My husband took one taste and announced that it tasted like vomit. He was right. The flavor is reminiscent of the acid-tang that lingers in the back of your throat after puking.

6. This coming week my son sees the spine doctor and will maybe get his brace off. His first eye surgery is scheduled for August (news he doesn’t yet know as he is currently gallivanting about Baltimore with his choir), but before that he’ll have a pre-op appointment and more eye tests. Did I ever mention that it takes three hours of round-trip driving for each of his appointments? From now on, I hope he executes better form when getting off his bike. Speedy dismounts do not a time saver make.

7. We still have a lot of lettuce in the garden, but my giant chef saladscucumbers, carrots, sweet peppers, cherry tomatoes, toasted sunflower seeds, cheese, craisins, boiled eggs, chopped ham, etcare getting met with mutters. The family is salad weary. I need inspiration. New twists on creative ways to consume large quantities of lettuce, anyone?

This same time, years previous: beef empanadas, oregano, garlic, and lemon roast chicken, and lemon donut muffins.


  • Lindsay

    My salad formula:
    greens (I like a combo and for this prefer softer textured leaves, so not mature romaine)
    1 variety fresh fruit, sliced or cubed (sometimes dried, but I usually stick with fresh)
    1 variety nuts or seeds (toasted, sometimes lightly candied depending on how sweet the fruit is)
    1 cheese, crumbled or shaved
    vinaigrette (basic formula: vinegar of choosing and/or fresh citrus juice, neutral oil, probably a dollop of mustard, a slug of honey, minced shallot/onion, a minced herb which complements the fruit/nut/cheese combo, salt, pepper)
    meat or seafood addition optional

    Some faves:
    Greens/spinach-strawberries-goat cheese-pine nuts-reduced balsamic vinaigrette-chicken or salmon optional (the huband's very favorite)
    Greens-apple-candied walnuts-blue cheese-orange vinaigrette
    Greens-figs-manchego-almonds-lemon tarragon vinaigrette

    You get the idea. The thing I like about this formula is that is very adaptable to whatever is in season, especially fruit-wise. And, generally speaking, people love it. Also, with this formula in mind I spend way less time agonizing over what salad to make.

  • Margo

    cornbread salad! The recipe is on my blog. It's cornbread crumbled through a lettuce salad with tomatoes and bacon and onion, then a killer French dressing.
    (I accidentally typed "blag" and laughed my head off – maybe a cross between brag and blog?)

  • Etta

    You could do a BLT salad! Bacon from that pig of yours, avocado, tomatoes, croutons and a dressing (1/8 cup mayo, 1/4 cup sour cream, 2 Tbs milk, 2 tsp cider vinegar, pepper and garlic).

  • AyrieJoyce

    One of our favorites for transitional seasons is to make a composed salad. Make a big platter of greens the arrange little odds and ends in small piles on top of the greens (don't scatter them). This time of year we like hard boiled eggs, tuna, early green beans, small boiled potatoes, peas and sugar snap peas, chopped herbs, olives, pickles, baby carrot thinnings, etc. Make a simple vinegar dressing and let everyone pick and choose from the platter at the table. Delicious and beautiful.

  • katie

    My sister makes lettuce wraps with some sort of pork meatball recipe with ginger and lemongrass and fish sauce type flavorings. And a sweet chili sauce she makes. Her kids all eat tons of lettuce to mop up all the delicious meats and sauces. That Korean Beef recipe might work pretty well for a filling too?

  • beckster

    Wilted lettuce salads! Red onion or green onions, depending on your likes, lettuce, chopped cooked bacon, dressed with a warm dressing of vinegar, sugar, and bacon grease to "wilt" the salads. I have never used a recipe for this. At times, I have added avocado and/or tomato after the salad is dressed. Delicious!

  • Unknown

    The sauces and prep are a lot of work, but when I have time I like to make a big batch of "bun thai" Vietnamese noodle bowl (like the "bada bun bowl" at that restaurant in town), which can sneak in a lot of lettuce. I describe it to skeptics and small children as a Vietnamese taco salad. The noodles and toppings keep well in the fridge for multiple cold servings.

  • Judy

    I completely agree about three extra sharp provolone. My best way of using it up was to fry it in a skillet until crispy and then dump the morning eggs over it to make an omelette.

  • Melissa @ thelittlegrayhouse

    Our favorite salad: lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, Pickled beets, chickpeas, feta or mizzarella,toasted bread/crutons. Dressed with equal parts olive oil and red wine vinegar with a clove of crushed garlic, a pinch of salt, pepper, and oregano. Divine!

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