Circling back to homebody: family, bread, and Pilot Butte

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This week and last I’ve tried to circle back and concentrate on family, spending quite a bit less time on the radio show and other events in the evenings. My radio co-host is out-of-town, and we just finished a show, so that helps a little, but I need to find a way to strike a balance when it gets busy again too. The last two weeks with extra work and radio commitments colliding produced disastrous results, so this is a good time to step back and regroup.

An update on the breadmaking: We’re still going strong. We’ve made bread every day for the last week. We can get by making up the dough every other day and then baking one loaf a night. The cheap baking stone is working great and we’re getting by just fine without an oven thermometer. I now have Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day out from the library as well ( I ♥ our library). I’m going to figure out the cost per loaf the next time we buy flour. We should be saving quite a bit, but then again we’re buying organic flours and also eating more bread than normal. (Ordinarily, if we run out of bread between paychecks, then we have to substitute other things.) It’s been fun, though, so even if we’re not saving all that much, it’s worth it. And the convenience of always having various breads available is great. I still can’t believe that I had never tried this easy way to make bread before. I’m going to have to find the podcast I was listening to that mentioned the Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day book and thank them. And then maybe mention the book in our next episode to pass it on. Most of the breads are already vegan, so it’s a natural fit for our Vegan Bite recipe segment.

The kids and I are back in our Pilot Butte habit again. My step-son and I have just gone 4 times in a row (every other day) and the girls 3 of those times. Ruby didn’t get to go the last few times, as she’s ripped a pad the last two times we walked the Butte. I don’t know if it’s the hot sand of the trail, or just tender paws from winter, but she also seemed extra tired both times as well. She‘s been so bummed out that she doesn’t get to go with! But I’m going to take it easy with her and only go on walks around the neighborhood for a while.

We’re already starting to take less time up and back—it’s a good free workout that is so much more challenging than walking around the neighborhood. I’m waiting for all of the kids to catch up to my fitness level, but it won’t be long. Even though it’s a high desert landscape, with lots of sage, junipers, and desert wildflowers, and very popular with people, there is plenty of wildlife. In the last week we’ve seen deer, lizards, chipmunks (or ground squirrels) and many bird species, including nuthatches, jays, robins, and sparrows. I’ve seen gray jays, ravens and birds of prey in the past. We even saw a nuthatch feeding a very noisy full-size baby the other day. And there are probably mountain lions, as they are seen once in a while in the surrounding area. So if we don’t come back one day… 😉

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