Girl Time

Those petite Mexican watermelons hit the supermarket in droves, just in time for my favorite bribe: watermelon juice. To be clear, no one bribes me with this – though I could be open to persuasion. I do the bribing. This brand of corruption is the best thing to happen to parenting since the coffee pot. It’s been gorgeous outside lately and no one wants to do anything but walk around outdoors barefoot, even though I have explicitly, repeatedly, forbidden this practice. It’s the season of loosened morals; as my youngest said, “Homework is at the bottom of my list.” Amen sister! I hear you, though I can’t support you. Luckily, the big watermelons are also about to land.

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I am manless this week, as my husband is sojourning in the Midwest. I enjoy my quiet time in the evenings, spent alternating between bowls of sweet and savory popcorn, so I am generally unbothered by his travel. But this week I have missed him. What is the point of eating a mastodon trough of popcorn if there is no one there to bear silent, horrified witness? Where’s the fun in it? Though my oldest did say, “Mom, I don’t want to hurt your feelings, but is it good for you to eat as much popcorn as you do? Because you eat A LOT.” Not quite silent horror, but still, it was something. But fear not, Eaters, I did not exist solely on popcorn and self-pity during my husband’s absence.

My oldest is content with a fruitarian diet, but my youngest likes a “real” dinner and becomes morose if she doesn’t have hot pasta. However, I didn’t want to make pasta every night. I was hoping to be a bit adventurous.

Day 1

I served them our standard pasta, (basil, parmesan, tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, walnuts) for placation purposes, while I had this quinoa. I was excited about it, since it included radish and kale sprouts from my garden. Quinoa doesn’t exactly fill me up, though. I love it, but the more I eat, the hungrier I get. I may have had some popcorn at some point later in the evening. I have been asked not to eat it after my daughters brush their teeth because, “It is no fun to listen to your chomping when we can’t have any.”

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Day 2

I had this manless meal, while my youngest feasted on an English muffin veggie face she put together. As you can see, our chives have all gone to flower, making a whimsical salad addition. The garbanzos and pumpkin seeds, plus homemade “dip” that my daughter was so proud of making, (yogurt, mayo, chives, parsley, lemon, pepper, salt) elevated this salad above the typical. And I know she was also pleased with the parsley toupee on her dinner.


Day 3

Black beans, corn, tomatoes, peppers, avocado, cilantro, lime, salt and maybe some olive oil – this salad is an old stand-by of mine. I made the girls roasted potatoes to go with it since my oldest inquired, “Is this really dinner?” Tough crowd. Where’s the watermelon juice when you need it?

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Day 4

I bought a 14 pound watermelon today. After my daughter’s friend tried the juice, she said, “It tastes like watermelon juice.” Thanks, I like to let the ingredients speak. That kid has a future as a food critic. I made a salad – surprising, I know. But the baby radishes in my garden were adorbs and I couldn’t resist. I told my youngest it was salad for dinner and she said, “Okay.  I will just make myself something else.” She’s 9, and I wouldn’t describe her as particularly independent. I wonder what she thought she would whip up. I made her pasta.

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Day 5

This brings me to the pinnacle –  THE APOTHEOSIS –  of deliciousness, a recipe that is new to me, (Adventurous!  See?) that I just ate not ten minutes ago and am tempted to make again, RIGHT NOW.

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This is from Runner’s World.  I am not a serious runner, but, as you know, I am a serious eater. This is called Zesty Thai Fruit Salad, but the name should be I Found my Soulmate. One bite and I stopped missing my husband. Husband who? I’ve moved on. The combination of lime, coconut milk and sriracha is so incredibly…incredible. You must make this. Note: I used dark brown sugar instead of honey because it sounded better to me, and I added the coconut flakes. The papaya was a Caribbean Red.*

May you find your soulmate this very week. And if s/he is out of town, may s/he return, hopefully without too much dirty laundry.

My youngest came in from playing – barefoot of course but when I called her, because, “When I heard the word homework, I knew I better get started. See?  I have become more sensible.” She spoke these words!  Amazing what can happen in a week.

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*The smaller, yellow, Mexican papayas are widely available, but for some reason, they taste like cigarettes to me (not even the clove kind, but like Pall Malls).

 

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