The mighty hunter’s weekend

My assistant, the cat, was very busy this weekend.

Cat: The wiggly, the wiggly, I caught the wiggly!
Me: *getting up to look* You brought me a snake. Good kitty! *call for husband to remove snake*

a few hours later

Cat: the digger, the digger, I caught the digger!
Me: He brought us something. What IS that?
Husband: Is it a vole?
Cat brings prize to door, lays it down in triumph
Husband: Groundhog. He caught a groundhog.
Me: It’s almost as big as he is. How can he carry that?
*husband removes groundhog*

a few hours later

Cat: mouse, mouse, mouse! Here!
Me: Good kitty. Thank you.
*husband already on the way to remove corpse*

Nothing dares invade our yard. At least, not for long.

soup for sick days

I could tell the coughing and sniffling was sliding downhill into truly cruddy this morning, so I put together a crockpot of soup in case I proved incapable of further efforts by dinner time. Soup is one of those welcome comfort foods when not feeling well. It’s easy to swallow, easy on uncertain stomachs, and full of nutrients.

I’d been planning to make navy bean and ham soup anyway, thanks to the remaining Easter ham in the freezer. I hadn’t made it before, but the recipes I found were basic enough: salt, pepper, ham, onion, carrots, celery, navy beans.

My ham and navy bean soup:
2 cans navy beans, about a cup of chopped ham (like I measure), 1/3 of a red onion, diced, 2 celery stalks and 1 lg. carrot, sliced. I used salt and pepper to taste, then added enough water to easily cover everything. (Since we have small kids, I usually make soups thick so they’re easier to eat. More water would make more broth.) Then I added somewhere around a half teaspoon of Jamaican Jerk seasoning, since I thought it’d be dull without a little additional flavor.

6 hours later, I had a crockpot full of soup that tasted delicious and didn’t bother my scratchy throat. Bliss.

To go along with it, honey whole wheat bread went into the bread machine. You can just about live on soup and bread with fresh fruit to snack on. Much better for recovering bodies than fast food, without much effort.

Apple tree budded

I’ve been taking pictures as part of my ongoing "take an art break every day" effort to keep the well refilled. This is the apple tree in the front yard, currently covered with bright pink buds. I think it’ll be in full blossom in another week.

The art breaks are pretty much limited to things I can do in 5-15 minutes, so my photo subjects are whatever’s handy. But it’s surprising how beneficial this is to writing and general well-being. If you haven’t tried a 5 minute art break, why not now?

apple tree 003