slow living update – July

I’m following the example at Slow Living Essentials again this month, and using her slow living format to summarize my month.

For most of the month of July slow living was the only way to combat the heat and humidity. It was just too oppressively hot to accomplish anything. The last week and a half have been wonderful, however, and we are finally enjoying being outside, eating our dinners in the covered porch and making plans to visit the cottage on the island for a few days.

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{Nourish}:

I love that I can come home from work, grab a bucket and a knife and head out to the garden to pick dinner. Last night we had a fettucini primavera made with shallots, green peppers, cherry tomatoes, zucchini and swiss chard picked from the garden. All we added was some homemade pesto and some cream and dinner was ready. The dad thought I should take a photo of it because it was so pretty (I didn’t – I was hungry). Most nights have been like that. I did write about the homemade pesto that we made in a big enough batch to freeze a few jars for later.

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{Prepare}:

I spent a couple of days early in the month making strawberry freezer jam. In the end, we had somewhere around 30 jars to keep us going until next spring. Sadly, with our sweet cravings, they won’t make it that long. I had plans to pick and freeze beans and peas, but we gave ourselves a bit of a pass on that this year because of heat and general laziness on my part. I did freeze about 5 bags of beans and a few bags of peas, but we have since eaten most of the frozen peas already.

{Reduce/Reuse/Repurpose/Repair}:

The dad and I are working away at a list of jobs to do around our place (mostly him – I’m Planning, he’s Development). On the list still are cleaning out the greenhouse and cold storage to make them useable again, fixing our old playset/swingset to be repurposed for the mini-cousins and repairing an endless list of equipment (usually after the dad breaks or mangles it himself).

{Green – cleaners, body products and basic herbal remedies}:

Nothing new here.

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{Grow}:

Our garden is doing great. I might have mentioned before that we have a limited amount of time and interest in weeding, so in some cases we have to know where to look for the plants. We have a bumper crop of weeds this year, but the veggies are holding their own too. Every now and then the dad sparks up his rototiller and runs it between the rows, but the stinging nettles are trying to take over the world and all of the rain we’ve had this spring and summer is making that possible. Any further weeding will need to be done with the string trimmer instead of a hoe.

We’ve been eating beans, peas, tomatoes, swiss chard, basil, lettuce, chives, onions, zucchini, peppers and cucumber and look forward to at least another month of grocery shopping in our own field. Last week I went to the store and only had to buy milk and bananas. I can’t complain about that.

{Create}:

I’ve started a new pair of socks, finally, though I am finding knitting and watching television difficult at times. I went to the optometrist and was told that I am now officially old enough that I need progressive lenses. Perfect. I didn’t feel old enough already.

{Discover}:

I fell out of the habit of reading this month. We seem to be busy in the evenings, and when we aren’t, I am happy to hold down the couch and watch something mindless on television. It’s summer and I’m feeling lazy.

{Enhance – community}:

The dad moved his business to another location in our town, hopefully to improve traffic into the store. He was asked to join the local Rotary club this week, so he will be getting involved a bit more in the community again.

We have been able to once again get a few dumptruck loads of (free) woodchips from the town to use on the flower gardens and around the trees. Our only cost the the cost of the dumptruck and again, it is great to be a part of a small community so that you know the local people that can be hired to do the jobs. The tall hormonal kid is has had her first outside of school babysitting gig this week and is enjoying being the boss for a change. I’m starting to get inquiries about her schedule at work, too – so I forsee a busy future for her.

We’ve also been able to buy vegetables and fruit locally this month and look forward to continuing to do that through the summer.

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{Enjoy}:

The dad turned 44 this month and we watched as his last brown hair turned grey. I find it endlessly amusing that customers constantly think his business partner (who is 3 years younger) is his son.

We’ve had some family dinners, visited with friends, attended an Eagles concert and have been mostly taking it easy. The tall kid spent a week at a hockey day camp run by former Olympic women’s hockey players Lori Dupuis and Jayna Hefford and came home very proud of a bruise she received from a slapshot by Lori Dupuis. She figures she learned some new skills and hopes they will help her make the local girl’s rep team. The small kid has been having weekly riding lessons at a riding stable outside the city and is gaining confidence and learning to jump. There have been lots of sleepovers at grandparent’s and aunt’s houses and we are doing our best to stay cool in the heat.

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18 thoughts on “slow living update – July

  1. Your month has a feeling of luxury about it; sounds great!

  2. I’m going to have to do something like this because it’s good to reflect. Sometimes it seems as if I don’t do anything, but I know that’s not true. Also, I’m hoping to make some freezer jam this weekend.

  3. It sounds like a lovely July. I keep thinking I need to try freezing some pesto since our basil is doing so well. Thanks for the reminder.

  4. Cannot tell you how much I love these month round-ups–

  5. Sounds like you have been busy despite the heat!

  6. chef mimi says:

    Really fascinating Heidi !

  7. Good that you are still doing the slow living posts. Enjoy the rest of the summer !

  8. What a perfect month. I too have fallen behind in the reading department I just don’t have the extra time and by bedtime I only need to hit the pillow to be out. I too was glad when the oppressive heat ended, but now it’s downright chilly, more like autumn than summer. Autumn better not be arriving this early I’m not ready for it.

  9. I love these summaries of your month and every month vow to look back at my month in the same productive way – and then life takes over again!
    I love to hear about the Dad and the kids. You write about them all with such understated affection and it is just lovely to feel a part of your life. Thank you for another delightful bulletin. 🙂

  10. Laurie says:

    I’m new to your blog – it’s so interesting that you refer to your husband as “the dad.”

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