It just dawned on me that we will transition into September this week! 🤯 We have intentionally tried to be home more this year because we knew the fall would be really busy, and all of a sudden, it is almost fall!
Excuse me while I step away to have a minor panic attack!
O.K., I’m back. Deep breath!
My challenge is that I love to travel AND I love being home. I like to have an orderly and organized life, but coming and going often disrupt that order. I know, first-world problems. I’m not complaining at all; I just need to get my ducks in a row for the rest of the year.
- We started watching Painkiller on Netflix this weekend. Another really well-done portrayal of the opioid epidemic.
- I binge-listened to Scamanda this week. Holy cow! I don’t want to give anything away, but it is worth a listen if you enjoy ‘true crime’ podcasts. It had been recommended to me multiple times, but for whatever reason, the description just didn’t appeal to me. But once I started listening, I couldn’t stop. It actually physically affected me; I realized I was clenching my stomach! STOP READING THE REST OF THIS PARAGRAPH IF YOU HAVEN’T LISTENED YET, I DON’T WANT TO GIVE ANYTHING AWAY! So, if you have listened to it already, tell me, on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the most likely, how likely is it that her husband WAS in on it? And her mom?
New on the Blog
- Rigatoni al Forno is literally just Baked Rigatoni, but it really is more than that. Rigatoni tubes have wonderful little ridges that catch and hold on to the flavorful meat sauce dotted with ooey gooey mozzarella and basil. It’s Italian comfort food at its best and simplest!
- I recently converted the corner curio cabinet I inherited from my grandparents to a bar cabinet. This piece of furniture has been the ‘before’ Cinderella for too long. Now, her true identity has been uncovered! Sharing what I did and more ideas for making your own bar cabinet.
From the Knit + Crochet Studio
- This Knit Purse Pattern uses the Half-Linen Stitch for the body of the purse. This easy-to-make handbag is lined and features detachable leather handles for easy washing.
- Simple linen cocktail napkins are made special by adding a simple crochet edge.
From the Kitchen
- This Savory Onion Jam can be canned for pantry storage, refrigerated, or frozen. No matter how you store it, it will quickly become one of your favorite condiments with endless possibilities.
- Perfect for a late summer/early fall meal, this Fig and Butternut Squash salad is healthy and hearty.
- Arepas are very simply flat cornbread, almost like thick tortillas, that hail from South America, specifically Venezuela and Colombia. They are made from masarepa, a pre-cooked cornmeal, and, therefore, a great gluten-free bread option for those who need or want it.
- This 15 Bean Soup Recipe is easy to make in the slow cooker and can be made healthier by substituting Smoked Turkey Wings and/or Legs instead of Smoked Ham Hocks. Instructions for making this soup in the slow cooker, stovetop, or oven are included. Additionally, adjustments for soaking or not soaking your dried beans are discussed.
- This Savory Quickbread would be great to serve alongside your soup! You can also add all the dry ingredients to a jar with the recipe attached for an appreciated gift.
Arts + Crafts
- This Oyster Shell Mirror remains one of my all-time favorite projects and will always hang in a place of pride. If you have access to a fresh fish store, you can most likely get the shells for free, making this a very inexpensive project.
- Simple French Knots fill the outline of an initial for this fun Monogram Pillow. It’s a great mindless project when you have a great show to watch.
In the Garden
I haven’t complained about the dearth of tomatoes I harvested for a bit. I went for counseling and am at peace with the fact that we filled the bellies of many a mockingbird this summer. I’ve accepted that mockingbirds like tomatoes too, and it was selfish for me to think I could both grow them AND eat them.
On the flipside, we have harvested no less than 10 butternut squash from a volunteer seed that found its way into my flower garden when I spread compost! Luckily, it seems that the critters that live in my backyard don’t really like butternut squash! Yay for us!
I took a few minutes this weekend to get my seeds started for the fall. Thus far, I’ve planted kale, arugula, spinach, cilantro, and broccoli seeds. I’ve ordered broccoli rabe seeds, so will plant those when they arrive. We will also sow a few Fava beans and Sugar Snaps in the ground.
In the past, I’ve pulled up all the roots of summer’s garden plants. This year, I will definitely leave the roots of all our green beans in the garden, and maybe the roots of some others. We realized that the soil we used to fill our beds this spring was probably not the healthiest, so in addition to adding compost from the bin, I’m looking to let the roots decompose and add nutrients.
If you aren’t already composting, it is not too late to start! Check out this primer on why you want to and how to compost.
House and Home
I saw a great saying this week that I wholeheartedly endorse:
Clutter breeds clutter; Order brings order
Keeping clutter at bay is an ongoing process for all of us, bu the more we stay on it, the more orderly our home and our lives! There is no doubt that my mind is calmer when my space is clutter-free and ordered.
On My Nightstand
It’s the end of the month, so it’s time to recap the books I’ve read and enjoyed (or not) this year. I’ve had several requests for my year-long book list, so I’ve made it a stand-alone post hoping that it will be easier to find whenever you need it.
A Few Fun Finds
- If you like to take advantage of end-of-season sales, Pottery Barn has many of their hurricanes and lanterns on sale, several of them 50% off regular price.
- This was a splurge, but a splurge I appreciate every night that I lay my head down!
- A nicely priced, simple Fall wreath.
Well friends! I’m off to ‘get stuff done!’
Let’s meet up next week, same time.