Monday, August 24, 2009

Last Two Weeks of Summer

I don't know about where you live, but here in Minnesota, school starts when the lake-resort season ends--meaning, after Labor Day. That means we have two weeks left of summer. I'm cramming as much summer fun into my girls' days as possible; we're busy picking eight quarts of cherry tomatoes and four pounds of yellow beans at our CSA farm (oh my), playing in the splash pool, attending park playdates and backyard playgroups like they're going out of style, and planning potluck dishes for end-of-summer parties. We're going on a field trip to a bookstore and an ice cream shop up in the city; we're going on nature walks and taking Genevieve's new dump trucks out on the patio.

And as for me? I'm roasting and freezing tomatoes; blanching yellow wax beans; baking more zucchini bread. I'm organizing summer photos and scrapbooks; I'm writing out the toddler birthday thank-you notes. I'm restarting regular exercise and trying (again) to lose the five pounds that have dogged me since I stopped breastfeeding.

I'm preparing--get ready, people--to ELIMINATE KID NAPS, in a very desperate attempt to get the babes to sleep at a normal bedtime in preparation for early school mornings. (My girls nap exceedingly well most days, long and hard, even the five-year-old; but Genevieve keeps them both up until 9 or 10 p.m. every night as she talks, sings, yells, cries, and screams in her crib, resisting bedtime.)

Can you imagine a full-time at-home mom voluntarily getting rid of solid, multi-hour kid naps in the midst of long, nonstop-parenting days? After five years? Yeah, me neither. If you hear faint crying sounds wobbling through the air at roughly 1 p.m. today, it's probably me, as I face my first ever (intentional) day of no naps. Lord help me.

How are you spending the last two weeks of summer?


Mnmom said...

Believe me, the no-nap days will grow on you as fast as summer tomatoes. And in exchange you'll love not sitting in the hallway until 10pm.

I get a little sad every August. I'm not ready to send my children back to school and I want one glorious, work-free summer month with them to go camping, go visit Lake Pepin and the Little House in the Big Woods, etc. But life, and they, have other plans.

Mom and Kiddo said...

Ok, here is my question: When you roast and freeze tomatoes, what do you then use them for? My son does not like tomato sauce on pasta but I have a huge abundance of roma tomatoes from my plant. I am looking for other idea than just cooking them to freeze pizza sauce.

Shan said...

Well, Mom and Kiddo, I'll tell you--I've never done this before. Mostly I froze my cherry tomatoes unroasted--just whole--and I plan to use them just as I would normally use canned diced tomatoes (i.e. in chili, casseroles, soup, etc.). However, note that they will have skins on them. That does not bother me so it's OK. (I don't think it will bother my family either.) I did roast 1 quart and froze half of that (1 pint) b/c I was not sure how those would turn out frozen. (We're eating the other pint of roasted ones, just cold or warm as a side dish, with salt/pepper.) I figure I'll thaw those roasted ones and toss them with pasta dishes in the winter. Or in soups/stews. Or throw them ON pizza, or on top of a quiche/frittata. It will be an experiment. Then maybe next summer I'll know more about how they are, and maybe I'll pick/roast/freeze even more....

Mom and Kiddo said...

Excellent. I think I'll try it, too. I also never bother with peeling... or with that de-seeding nonsense so many recipes call for.