7 Quick Takes Friday (vol. 134)

July 15, 2011 | 73 comments

— 1 —

Well, I’ll just come out and say it: I’m overwhelmed! This is definitely one of the more challenging transitions we’ve had in terms of family size. Well, I guess they were all challenging in different ways. With baby #1 we were shocked by the idea of having a little human who depended on us for everything. With baby #2 we had to adjust to the concept of having more than one of those little humans (especially since my husband and I are both only children). Baby #3 was the first time we were outnumbered by our kids, so that took some getting used to. Baby #4 was a freebie (I mean, seriously: the child just slept and smiled for her first year of life). And now, with baby #5, we’re getting used to living in an environment that’s sort of like a cross between a daycare and an asylum for the violently insane.

I know it’ll get easier once the the baby is on a schedule and doesn’t need to eat all the time, but right now I am definitely struggling to keep my head above water.

— 2 —

Image from kalynskitchen.com

I need to tell you about this salad I’ve been making. “Oh, no! Salad talk!” you say, “I’m going to skip this stupid and boring take!” Do so at your own peril, because this is no ordinary salad. Nay, it is one of the best foods I’ve ever had. Here’s the super simple recipe:

Throw a bag of mixed greens in a big bowl. Add feta cheese, mushrooms, avocado, cucumber, tomato, chopped black olives, and any other veggies you like (except onions, because raw onions are horrible, and putting them in salads is just wrong). Top it with oil and vinegar dressing, which you make by just mixing olive oil and balsamic vinegar in a 3:1 ratio.

That’s it! It is so good, I can’t even describe it. Now, here’s the thing: I’ve heard of salad recipes like this before, and assumed that this was some second-class food that people on diets ate because they had no other options. When people said, “This is great!”, I thought they meant, “This is great…compared to the scrambled fat-free egg substitutes I had for breakfast!” Not only did all the raw veggies not sound super appetizing, but, as a person who considers Ranch dressing the fifth food group, oil and vinegar sounded like some kind of punishment. But I was totally wrong. This is so delicious, I could eat it for every meal. Definitely try it.

— 3 —

Well, this is exciting news: A company claims that they have a fertility monitor that has the same success rate as a round of IVF in terms of helping couples achieve pregnancy. It’s called the DuoFertility monitor. (And presumably if it’s that good at helping people have children, it would also be good for spacing them as well.) But here’s the catch: You can’t buy it in the U.S. because the FDA is still reviewing it. Seriously, FDA? Why are you trying to mess with us? I mean, what is there to review? Can someone hurt themselves from knowing their basal body temperature?

I know, I know: We don’t need this monitor, since you could get the same results by tracking your own symptoms. But it sure does make it easy! Someone please let me know as soon as this is out in the U.S.

— 4 —

I keep laughing about this old public service announcement I stumbled across on Youtube:

Maybe it’s because I live in Austin, where pets are valued as much (okay, more) than people, but the “not everyone likes your bad dog” message makes me snicker every time I think of it. It cracks me up to imagine the reaction if something like that were to run around here.

— 5 —

You know what’s getting old? This:

This is what our forecast has looked like all summer. Seriously. Every week. On the plus side, I’ve been able to use more of my wardrobe. When it’s just “really hot” I try to wear light capri pants, shorts, and t-shirts with breathable material. But when it gets to the point of being STUPID HOT, it doesn’t matter anymore. When it is 105 degrees outside without a single cloud in the sky, my misery level is already so astronomically high that the increase in suck from wearing jeans and a heavier shirt instead of something lighter is negligible. Any trips outside are basically survival exercises anyway, where I’m like a Navy SEAL commander shouting “GO! GO! GO!” to the kids as we hunker down and dash from one shaded area to the next, so it’s not like I spend a lot of time just sitting around outdoors. Heck, I spend so much time indoors with the air conditioner blasting right now that I might as well get out my winter wardrobe.

— 6 —

I did something awesome to streamline our dinner planning process recently: Put it all in Evernote! (You knew I was going to say that, didn’t you?) Anyway, here’s what I did:

  • Created two notebooks, one called Recipes to Try, another called Recipes We Love.
  • Got out my recipe folder and my three favorite cookbooks, and flipped through them.
  • When I came across a recipe I knew we liked, I added a note with the name of the recipe to the Recipes We Love folder. (I didn’t take the time to type out the whole recipe, but rather made a quick note like 12 Months of Monastery Soups, p. 98.)
  • I did the same thing for recipes we wanted to try, putting them in the Recipes to Try folder.

When I sit down to plan meals each week, I used to have to gather all my books and papers if I wanted to look for ideas of what to make — but now it’s all in one place! I just open up Evernote, and with a quick scan I can see all the options. I also use tags like breakfast, lunch, dinner, sides, crock pot, easy, etc. so that I can filter by what I’m looking for. It’s made meal planning much quicker, and has helped me remember many recipes that would otherwise be forgotten.

— 7 —

If you have emailed me, tweeted me, commented on a Pinterest pin, or otherwise tried to contact me recently, I apologize that I probably haven’t gotten back to you. I’m hoping to dig myself out of this hole and get back on top of stuff soon, but it may be a few more weeks. In the meantime, I’m sorry if I seem rude or unresponsive! I’m just a little overwhelmed.


Below is a linky list if youโ€™d like to add a link to your own 7 Quick Takes post. (1) Make sure the link you submit is to the URL of your post and not your main blog URL. (2) Include a link back here.



  1. Pam

    Hey — I did a salad take too! I’ll have to try yours. That salad looks great.

    Take it easy on yourself. You’ve got a lot… a LOT… going on.

    • Gina

      Yes, please go easy on yourself! We’ll understand.

    • Trudy

      If you are nursing the baby, check the label on balsamic vinegar. Most bottles now carry a cancer warning. I LOVE the stuff, but it may not be safe.

  2. Kara

    I’m so behind on my family blog I’m not even bothering with 7 quick takes this week.

    I’m a little overwhelmed with transition with my newbie, too. She’s a high maintenance baby, and I’ve never had one of those before. It’s breaking my heart because I don’t know how to soothe her, plus we’re super busy with summer stuff, it’s a million degrees here, just like in your neck of the woods +10 degrees a lot of times, and I’m just tired! We’ll both be okay in the end, though! Hang in there!

    I use Evernote for my recipes, but don’t have them all planned out like that. Love it!

    • Kara

      Oh and I totally want one of those fertility monitors!!! Hope they’re out soon in the US!

    • Jan

      Have you heard of The Happiest Baby on the Block? 5 s’s: swaddle, side position(her tummy to your), swing back and forth and vibrate/shake your body gently while shushing loudly and allowing her to suck, if she wants a pacifier or your pinky. The book is a quick read but those are the basics. Helped tremendously with 2 of mine. One was 6 weeks old when I started.

  3. Kimberly

    #5 really made me laugh out loud. I am a horrendous mom when it is hot outside. I don’t think that I could live anywhere as hot as where you live. My girls would hate me and my husband probably would too. My crank button goes WAY out of wack. Hope that the weather changes for you.

  4. Dorian Speed

    I’ve been waiting and waiting for Seven Quick Takes day, looking forward to your updates and thinking I’d finally have the mental wherewithal to get back to blogging, but all I really want to say to you, Jennifer, is this:

    Our air conditioner broke.

    At the new house.

    On moving day.

  5. Leila

    Overwhelmed? Why on earth would you be overwhelmed?

    Oh, and I want that salad. Even I could make that!

  6. suburbancorrespondent

    There would be something wrong with you if you weren’t overwhelmed at this point. Just hang on and enjoy the ride!

  7. Tami Boesiger

    Hang in there Jen. I always thought the months until the wee one sleeps all night were TOUGH! Each kid made it tougher. Was it my increasing age or the increasing responsibilities with other kids? Just keep forging on.

  8. George @ Convert Journal

    We are big on salads too, including tomato salads and Caprese salads. Of all the goodies that can be included, one of the things we did not give priority to was good balsamic vinegar. The assumption was that they were pretty much all the same. One day strolling through Whole Foods and trying the free samples, we discovered their balsamic vinegar bar. Wow, so much variety and such a difference in taste (in price too).

    My entry this week… Christine Watkins tells her conversion story and overviews her book on converts. A week in the life of a priest. Jerusalem in iMax 3D. The worldโ€™s oldest nun, still going strong. A whimsical Catholic nun commercial. A toddler bodyguard.

  9. Nancy

    I am so behind on this series….I’ve just posted volume 4! Oh well, better late than never!

  10. Jen

    Thanks for the salad idea, we will be giving it a try!

  11. Emily

    Can I say how much I love Pinterest now?? Ahh it is so amazing. I’m so glad you introduced me to that last week! I also love how you talk about salad in your 7QT and I talk about trying it.. hah.

    Hopefully it gets a bit cooler there.. that just does not sound fun. And I LOVE Betty White!

  12. Kathleen@so much to say

    I only have 3 kids, so it feels presumptuous to say anything about adjustments to you, but my experience is that the adjustment points lie in the rule of 6: the first 6 days, the first 6 weeks, the first 6 months. At each of those points, it gets markedly easier, or at least, it has for us. I hope my #4 is as easy as yours. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I like your idea with #6. I put notes in the books on the recipes as to whether we liked them or hated them, or what adjustments we thought they needed. But you’re right, I still have to pull out all the books every time I do recipe planning!

  13. Julia at LotsaLaundry

    Girl, WHAT are you doing planning meals with a newborn in the house?!? If I had any idea where Texas was (and it wasn’t hotter than hell there), I’d bring you dinner. And I’d bring a stack of paper plates for you to eat it on, too.

    As for the insanity, those first three months are off-balance and humility-generating every time. You seem to have good spirits about it in print, but I’m putting you on my prayer list, anyway.

  14. Carl

    Hang in there, kid. You’re doing great, even if it doesn’t seem like it right now! As a father of seven, I know each new one brings their own challenges but it will definitely get easier with the passage of time, as I am sure you know. Reading your posts is always an inspiration to me as an adult convert. Thank you.

  15. Anne

    I woke up three times in the middle of the night with the word ‘Pinterest’ going through my head. Maybe its a sign from God that I should go there and do that, whatever it is.

    Also, I was really overwhelmed with baby #4, but my first is a girl and she is now 9 (as of this week) and so babies #5 and #6 have been much easier than I thought because she’s so motherly. When the oldest can really help its like a whole new world (and I mean really actually help, not just sort of do a chore here and there). Courage and hope!

  16. Erika Evans

    Evernote for recipes—yes! I do the same, although I have put the recipes themselves into EN (helped that I’ve been entering them into Allrecipes for years, so there was a lot of highlight-pasting). I am constantly tinkering and polishing, so I like having them at the ready so I can edit as I cook.

    And of course I have another ‘note’ in Evernote for errands, including groceries, so I toggle back and forth between the recipe notes and the grocery list note as I’m planning meals….which I do in my Google calendar; I have a calendar designated for meals.

    Side note/hot tip, for those who cook with a laptop in the kitchen–Saran wrap over the keyboard and screen ; )

    Will be praying that your home calms down sooner rather than later : )

  17. Judy

    Even though I understand how you are thrashing about on a ravaged sea; spitting and spurting and gurgling for air these days…I can’t help but smile…because it is still soooooooo sacred and beautiful and sweet. God bless you Jennifer:)

    Now, this might make you sick, offended, or just plain grossed out…but my family actually likes to pick raw onions from the garden, salt them, and eat them like apples with a hunk of good cheese and Italian bread. It’s true!

    Thanks for the salad…the items are going on my next grocery list because you have won me over! Sounds and LOOKS delish!

    One last thing…I can’t help but wonder…how is “having a new baby in the house” different with Ya Ya in the near vicinity. Surely this has brought some delightful, interesting, chaotic, wonderful changes, as well:)

  18. Karianna

    I am so feeling #5. Yesterday was a “cool” day for us… only 91. I am so over this hot-like-fire weather. I remember playing outside as a kid; now, all my kids are learning is how the A/C feels!

  19. Maria

    i am in georgia … and we’ve been having weather of 100 degree temps for a while.

    i love your menu planning idea; i’m going to look into evernote (i know you’ve mentioned it once or twice;)

  20. Claire

    Major fail at typing in my name for the 7 Quick Takes :S oops! Ah well! Happy Friday one and all ๐Ÿ™‚

  21. Veronica

    Great Quick Takes. With all you have going on it amazes me you can put your thoughts together, and so well. Hang in there, I am one of 5 and I remember when #5 came along. It was definitely a period of adjustment, but also a very memorable time.

  22. Kendra @ The Nerdy Wife

    I’m sure family life *is* crazy for you…..can’t imagine it yet when I’m not yet a mother! God bless you and your family and I hope things get smoothed out soon and settle into some semblance of a routine ๐Ÿ™‚

  23. Paul H

    Regarding #3, have you heard of the Marquette Model of NFP? It uses readings from a fertility monitor (the ClearBlue Easy Fertility Monitor), along with cervical mucus observations. My wife and I have always used Billings (and it has worked well for us), but we are considering giving Marquette a try. Here is a link for more information:


  24. Angela

    Our temps are killer too….but not that killer. Today we are in high 80s and I feel like I’m on the north pole! It’s wonderful!

  25. EML

    The salad looks great and am going to give it a try. Have a great weekend!

  26. micaela swift

    FDA must be second guessing itself. Clearly, all this thing does is take the basal body temp throughout day-unlike some chemical releasing disaster that exposes the body/skin etc to all these manufactured chemicals.
    When women can actually take charge of their fertile cycle, by embracing it rather than continuously killing it with the wondrous ways our government promotes such a killing, then the whole industry of contraceptives, abortifacients, and abortion may well be on the pathway to die out. The FDA may not be reviewing this thing’s effect on the body’s health, but more on the effect it will make on the money making/business aspect. YIKES! Im sure that is the real engine behind them.
    Docs are so used and hyped up to prescribing (or more like) ‘controlling’ women with hormonal contraceptives as oung as they can get them. They make tons of money (and seeing how contraceptives are clearly tied to breast cancer, uterine cancers, causing major problems with infertility etc down the road), it is a all dollar sign eyeballs to them.

    So this innocent machine…..is pretty much a business threat to the US system. It takes time to figure it out. : )
    just my theory ; )

  27. Beth

    Bless your heart, I don’t know how you do it. I think you are going great. I will have to try that salad, I am a huge salad buff and it looks great. I have a recipe folder too of the recipes we love as a family but I don’t know if I could get away from paper or not. This has my interest though ๐Ÿ™‚

  28. Anthony S. Layne

    1: I’m sure you’ll get on top of the situation soon … just in time for #6 ….

    2: You don’t like onions? Salvation is yet possible. Red onions work with salad. I’m eating more salads as part of my diet, so I’ll have to give this recipe a try.

    Skipping to 6: I have a recipe program that works for this kind of thing, called MasterCook 7. You can use it to put together a cookbook of your favorite recipes; it’ll even give you a nutritional breakdown, as well as help you plan meals and prepare grocery lists.

    3: Here’s hoping it clears the FDA hurdle soon!

    4: My niece and her husband live in Round Rock; their dog is their first child.

    5: I know what you mean; I live in Denton, just north of the DFW metroplex, where the temps are just two or three degrees cooler. Bad enough that I sweat like a cold can of pop if I so much as jog my memory. Mowing the lawn in “stupid hot” weather just increases the suckage factor. And I’m from Omaha, where we start to kvetch and whine if it gets over 90 for more than two days in a row! When I moved down here and found out that 90 is unseasonably cool, I thought, “Oh Lord, Layne, what have you done to yourself?” Now, when I go back North, I’m practically in a jacket when people are whinging about the heat.

    7: We understand!

  29. Stacey

    Hang in there! Oh and about the fertility monitor, while I obviously haven’t tried this one, I did try the Marquette method with the Clear Blue Easy monitor and it was horrible. I found out that monitoring fertility to conceive is very different from monitoring to avoid and there were A LOT of days (especially when your are breastfeeding) that they said were fertile days (which in hindsight I know were not) which naturally led to a lot of abstinence. Ugh! I ended up switching to the Creighton method which works better for me and once you’ve learned is basically free.

  30. Renee

    Number 5 kicked my butt, hard. Every one after that has been easier, if that is any consolation. The comment about the rule of 6, 6 days, 6 weeks and 6 months being times of transition is right on. Meanwhile, don’t worry about the house of the laundry, you’ll always have that with you, but soak up the newborn sweetness, for it is so very, very fleeting. Blessings!

  31. Stephanie

    I figured out how to sign up for pinterest (a customer service rep quickly responded and said sign up for twitter, log in to pinterest, delete twitter account). Done!

    I’m hooked.

    I started doing a very similar thing on Pinterest as you are doing on Evernote. I have my board of “recipes I make too often” and I’m going to start a “to-try” recipe board.

    I’m already excited about future menu planning. Me = dork.

  32. Jenna

    #5 all the way! I have to hype myself up before going outside (mentally, that is…I don’t want to expend any extra energy!) 39 weeks pregnant and way too hot!!


  33. Louise

    Many prayers as you adjust to having your newest family member around!!
    I agree with you about that fertility monitor. The FDA has its priorities completely screwed up, when there are carcinogenic, embryo-destroying contraceptives readily available, yet this noninvasive, safe device is not yet “approved.”
    Love the Evernote recipe idea! ๐Ÿ™‚

  34. Christy from fountains of home

    Hope things are getting a bit better day by day. I know its an uphill climb with a newborn, but I’m sure you’re doing great.

    I posted my 7 quick takes as well today! Thanks Jen!

  35. nancy

    I can totally understand how you can be feeling just a tad overwhelmed!! But you still manage to pull together a wonderful 7 takes; loved this week’s!

    Thanks to you I’ve been using Evernote for lots of things, including bookmarking recipes I want to try.

    Here’s a great resource that I’ve been using for meals: Eat Your Books at http://www.eatyourbooks.com . It’s an online service, and comes with a fee, but I’ve more than gotten my money’s worth out of it after just a few weeks of use. You input your own cookbooks (which is simple because there are thousands of cookbooks in the database so you don’t have to type very much) and then you can search by ingredient (what can I do with all of the squash I’ve got on hand) or type of dish (I searched for meatloaf last week) and it will give you a list of the recipes that are in your cookbooks + their ingredients. I cannot tell you how helpful this has been in finding things to cook that are in books that I already know I love.

  36. Briana

    I am so glad someone else shares my dislike for onions in salad. I always have to take a portion out for me before the onions are added. It just ruins all the other flavors for me. Your salad loos yummy, and I can see how nicely it would go with your warm days. Feel free to send some of your hot weather to Seattle. We are all in long pants and sweatshirt up here.

  37. Kelly

    I think Evernote sounds like something I could get addicted to. I would be so busy organizing stuff the house could fall down around me. But my “inner world” would be in order! But that ‘s just me. I am humbled and amazed how you juggle what sounds like a _very_ full life, Jen. You are an inspiration, really! I am starting a new career as two of my daughters begin college this fall, so will I! And I am looking at 50 in a few very, very short weeks. God is good.

  38. Shannon

    re: onions

    Red onions are wonderful.

    Walla Walla Sweets are amazing.

    yes, in salads.

  39. Colleen @ Inadequate Disciple

    Jen, it is not hard to imagine you having moments of feeling overwhelmed. Your life is on the intensely lived side with the 5 children, one a newborn, the recipes, the meal planning, the blogging, the job, etc. Very fun to read about, and that salad made me very hungry looking at it. If I ever start meal planning (haven’t done that in 12 years or so) I will put that in the mix.

  40. Jackie @ Family Daze

    As a mother of eight, I’m here to confirm that #5 is the hardest (in my opinion) especially when they are not spread out. I had my first seven children in 10 years. By the time #6 came around, the oldest were getting old enough to help. And what a great blessing that was! Hang in there, Jen! You are doing GREAT!

  41. elizabethe

    That’s a great salad. I used to eat basically that all the time. Throw some sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds on it and it’s even better.

    You can also make a fabulous salad with no oil by using feta or avocado (something creamy that will disintegrate slightly in the lemon juice) and lemon juice. Let the creamy thing sit in the lemon juice at the bottom of the bowl (fresh squeezed lemon juice, I hope i don’t need to stipulate) while you cut up everything, then throw it all in on top and toss it. It’s a great salad.

    For my meals I use macgourmet and ical. I always enter recipes into my macgourmet from cookbooks. Then I plug them into ical as events on a 4 week rotation. Recipes we really like I make repeating for once a month or once every two weeks or whatever. So then, I pull up a week, and it will usually have about 3 or 4 days already filled in with recipes that are repeated, and I just have to figure out what to put in the remaining spaces. I search macgourmet for that or look at a cookbook for inspiration.

    The repeat event function on the calendar (which I’m sure they have on non-mac calendar programs) is a real lifesaver when it comes to meal planning for me and my husband who was annoyed that I never made things he liked twice.

  42. JoAnna

    “…weโ€™re getting used to living in an environment thatโ€™s sort of like a cross between a daycare and an asylum for the violently insane.”

    Hey, I thought that was my house! (And I only have 3, plus 1 due in December)

  43. Trista

    MMM, that salad looks great!

    Praying for you and your family!

  44. Ashley


    In regards to the fertility monitor, we have a LadyComp which is manufactured in Germany and was tested on over 10,000 women for cycle patterns. It’s quite a blessing. Typically, you can find them on Ebay or just order them. Yes, it’s a little pricey, but it lifted a lot of the feeling of responsibility off my shoulders. Check it out!

    If any has any questions about it, hit me up!

  45. Lisa @ Cheerfully Chaotic

    That salad is almost identical to the salad that I make for EVERY party we throw. In fact, I now call it the “party salad” (original, I know).

    I add romaine, feta, tomatoes (seeded), avocado chunks, and a TINY bit of red onion (I know, I know). I pour some Ken’s Caesar dressing on the top, and just barely toss it. As people start scooping it up, the dressing gets totally mixed in. I usually have to make 2 huge bowls because it goes so quickly!

    And I’m with you with the Hill Country temps. I just stay inside and turn paler each day. Then, after 10 minutes in the sun, I brown up again. It works for me.

  46. Jen G

    #4 – So funny! Here the weather has been more in the mid-to-upper 90’s with 60% humidity so that it “feels like” 105-110 degrees. It’s lovely. Really ๐Ÿ™‚

    #6 – You know, there’s an Evernote app for the Android phone and I was tempted to get it, but after reading the notes it sounds like something for only really organized people. Which I am not ๐Ÿ™‚ Kudos to you though!!

  47. Monica

    That salad sound AWESOME! I’ll definitely be trying it.

    And my 5th baby is about to turn 5…I remember the days you are in now…it’s an amazing time. I’m impressed that you are still blogging! Go girl…

  48. Trisha Niermeyer Potter

    Can’t imagine the craziness at your house. Okay, well I can sort of picture some of it, but I will certainly keep sending prayers your way as you continue to chase your cuties around in blazing hot weather.

  49. dweej @ HouseUnseen

    Okay, my grandma, mother of 14 (fourteen!) children told me once that it never gets harder than 5. Any child after that will be the same amount of hard, or even less.

    If you can do this (AND YOU CAN), you can do anything!

  50. Ruth

    I like the looks of the salad too, although I have to say that being overwhelmed is ok right now!



  51. Jeanne G.

    The salad looks delish!

  52. nicole

    At least one other person mentioned it, but we use the Marquette model of NFP too. We rely primarily on the monitor so are very conservative after six kids in 8 years (just started using method after #6). We love it.

  53. Andrea

    You are even funnier sleep-deprived than normally!!!! These takes had me just dying laughing!! Thank you for taking the time even in the midst of chaos, you made my night ๐Ÿ™‚

  54. Katy

    I don’t know how you do it with that kind of weather! It makes surviving the below zero weather here in the winter so worth it to only have mid 90s be the hottest it gets here!

  55. Marchelle

    Girlie, I feel your “hunker down” & “get the trip out in the heat over with as quickly as possible” pain. I live near Phoenix, and not even at night do we ever feel a reprieve until October! Can I be honest, it sucks to breastfeed in this weather; it’s like holding a spaceheater up to you while being cooked in a convection oven. Need I say more? Didn’t think so. Figure it’s in reparation for my sins, just didn’t know I was such a sinner.;-) Anyway, go easy on yourself. We all love hearing from you, but your sanity is far more important. God bless you, mama!

  56. jenn

    Sending hugs and prayers your way! Thanks for the great salad recipe!

  57. Grace

    That salad looks great.:) Pinterest and Evernote? My husband just told me what one of those is. I think I need to steer clear of at least Pinterest. I already can’t keep up with just blogging, and one more thing to distract me just won’t be good for me at all. Take it easy…you’re still on your babymoon…enjoy it.:)

  58. margaret

    Just wanted to let you know I created a 7 quick takes! Thanks!

  59. Benjamin Baxter

    Sorry! I posted my site but not the post — haven’t written it yet. Oy vey … Delete my link, pretty please?

  60. Megan at SortaCrunchy

    I’ve been rude and unresponsive all OVER the place – and I don’t even have a new baby! No excuse, really, except that, like our lawn, I am slowly dying from summer drought.

    I am going to try that salad though.

  61. Sarah R.

    I had never heard of Evernote until this post (I’m newish to your blog)…but as soon as you started talking about a good way to organize recipes, I knew I was interested. Thanks!

  62. Martha E.

    You’re awesome (for finding the time for your favorite hobby despite having 5 small children), inspirational (whenever I feel overwhelmed by my 3 under 3 I read your story and feel inspired that I can manage it) and don’t give yourself nearly enough credit for the great work I’m sure you’re doing with your kiddos. Keep up the good work! Praying for you!

  63. crabby

    Oh how i love eating salad! Thank you so much for sharing this one. It was indeed interesting and very entertaining. i would love to read more of your articles.

  64. Kristen

    The heat is definitely terrible, but we might maybe get some rain this week (finally), so that could help a little bit…

  65. Shauna

    I can totally relate! My 5th baby is 9 months old tomorrow and I am finally feeling like I might survive. My baby is a dream but 5 children is very challenging and when there is only 1 mommy and all of these little people running around the house you do start to go insane. It will get better just not for awhile. I actually had to throw in the towel with homeschooling because I basically didn’t school my kids this year. they did some kind of unschooling mommy helper thing and I finally came to my senses and enrolled my oldest in our parish school and two in public school. They will start in August! God Bless you Jen and don’t worry there is always another mom out there that knows what you are going through ๐Ÿ™‚

  66. Thag Jones

    I almost always make my own dressing for salad. Usually it’s olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard and honey. Maybe some pepper as well. Pretty good! Also, green onions or chives are good for salad – not so much regular onions!

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