Tuesday, July 19, 2011

"i'm dyyyyyyying"

in case you haven't noticed, it's a tad on the warm side around here. yesterday i was really tired from a busy weekend and my tolerance for everything, but especially the heat, had reached an all time low.

as i stumbled around the kitchen trying to figure out what to feed the boys for dinner, i kept catching myself almost crying out, "i'm dyyyyyyyying!" the only thing that stopped me was the knowledge that my boys would then repeat it in moments of boredom or annoyance and i would have only myself to blame for the new addition to their whining repertoire.

searching the fridge, the only thing that sounded edible was iceberg lettuce. cool and crisp. "yes", i mentally declared, "i'm going on an iceberg lettuce hunger strike until this heat lets up!" figuring the boys might not be too wild about the idea, i think i finally made sandwiches for dinner.

when it's this hot, i have no motivation to cook. (not that i'm really super motivated when it's a more reasonable temp.) standing in front of a hot stove-nope. steamer or crockpot heating up the kitchen-no thank you. baking-out of the question!

i actually did all those things for a good part of the day on saturday and sunday morning to get ready for ben's birthday party on sunday, which i think brought on my "i'm dyyyyyying" episode yesterday.

while i find the weather and the parched landscape it's creating pretty dreadful, the colors in my kitchen these days, when i brave the heat and make it to the store, are quite beautiful.

to me, the color combinations in a peach (and the flavor) are proof of God's existence.

and of course you have to have watermelon in the sum, sum, summertime.

though i'm not a big sweet drinks type of person (unless it has alcohol in it), my guys sure enjoy "special drinks", so i made watermelon lemonade sweetened with stevia.

i think i enjoyed the color as much as the flavor.

since we can't live solely on pretty fruit, the grill comes in handy.

for me, the epitome of summer food is any combination of basil and tomatoes. with fresh mozzarella, on fresh bread with parmesan, cracked black pepper, and evoo, with pasta, i love it all.

my issue with summer food is that i have a hard time buying it at the store. my parents always had a big garden growing up, so summer food was food we grew. watermelons and cantaloupes came from a family friend up the road. cucumbers came from my uncle next door. tomatoes were so fresh i swore i could taste the sunshine in them.

but so far, my own attempts at gardening have proven pretty worthless. i work on saturday mornings, so the farmer's market is out of the question. i treasure produce that we're given by family, but this year it seems like everyones' gardens are suffering. to buy a melon or tomato that i know has been shipped across the country seems silly when i live in the agricultural heartland. but alas, i should just be thankful i'm able to buy food for my family. and continue to try to improve my garden soil. and maybe check out a few gardening books ; )

so what do you like to eat in the summertime?


  1. Mary, the tomato, basil and mozzarella salad sounds heavenly! I saw a recipe the other day for it...and have been craving it ever since. What is evoo??

  2. those last 2 pictures are making me salivate and wish I had a grill. Yum!

  3. lovely pictures!! i rely heavily on the grill in the summer. lately i've even taken to putting a cast iron skillet on the grill for a little veggie saute-ing. but today there is an Arnold Acres chicken in my crock pot waiting for me when i get home:)

  4. the cast iron skillet on the grill is a great idea jame. evoo=extra virgin olive oil, debi. and yes, erika, our grill was quite an unexpected blessing.

  5. We grill out a lot! The in-laws gave us a grill pan which is like a grill with holes in it. We cook veggies in it. I like it cuz it gets the grill flavor without having to put them on skewers one by one. I do enjoy the look of the veggies on the skewers though.

  6. the sedg. cty extension office is a GREAT resource for getting started gardening. They also have a master gardener that you can talk to for free about any problems you are having. I have found it to be a great resource for gardening.