The View Around Here

I haven’t taken many photos this week. I’m not exactly sure why that is. On one hand I’ve been busy but on the other, not really. It’s the zenith of summer after all, and really who wants feel busy all the time. Not me.

While staying at my parents I’ve been doing some blogging but there’s also this book to promote and market. Ok, so I haven’t been all that busy with book marketing. But I did get this affiliate page up at FIMBY if you are interested in spreading the word about Eat This.

But honestly, I’ve been taking it easy this week. Resting, sleeping in (staying up late), reading for long stretches of time during the day, finishing one book, starting another (English library service!). Letting the kids watch copious amounts of Olympics.

It feels like I’m on a little bit of a vacation. A vacation with 6 kids, thirteen and under, running around.

My sister-in-law and myself spend hours each day in the kitchen. We’re generally cooking separate meals since her family is very raw in their diet (and also my niece and nephews have food allergies and sensitivities that mine don’t). But we share lots of time together and conversation about nutrition, mothering, faith and pretty much anything else that matters to talk about.

When the kids aren’t watching Olympics they are pretending Olympics (boxing can get a little out of hand) or running wild and barefoot in the woods surrounding my parents house. They play “Mantracker”, freeze tag and of course, catch and study critters. There are some serious naturalists in this house. Summer science.

What fabulous memories we’ll all have of this time together. For six kids around each other all day there are amazingly few squabbles. Dawna and I credit our awesome mothering (ha, ha!), but seriously, we have such a great bunch of kids. We admit, we’re 100% biased but we love our kids.

The food this week has been fab. Like I said before, my sister-in-law is studying nutrition and their family is going vegan raw (lots of sprouts and wheat grass) and my mom is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist.

Mom is a wonder in the kitchen, always has been. Nowadays she bakes gluten free wonders, makes Kombucha and water kefir, has sourdough bubbling on the counter (pancakes for Saturday morning breakfast), buys raw milk from the farmer to make homemade ice cream for a rare treat and is growing an impressive garden. Like iron sharpening iron, we all three are learning from each other. 

The only thing missing this week is my husband, who is at Outdoor Retailer networking and scoping out products and companies. That’s a big “only” but the busy-ness of hanging out with family all day makes the separation easier.

When I wrap this up these weekly “views” I feel like saying “and that’s the news from Lake Wobegon”. Maybe I should try my own ending salutation...

And that’s the fun in my back yard. What about yours?

Renee Tougas participates in affiliate marketing, including the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. Whenever you buy something on Amazon from a link you clicked here, I get a (very) small percentage of that sale. See disclosure for further explanation.

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« Best Falafel Salad Ever (or my favorite to date)
Walking the Same Path »
  • Stacy

    Stacy on Aug. 4, 2012, 1:01 p.m.

    Ok Renee....we need some info on the wheatgrass and shelf thing! Looks great....enjoy your sweet family.


    • renee

      renee on Aug. 4, 2012, 1:16 p.m.

      Basically, it's a sprout factory around here. That shelf is an IKEA shelving unit my parents usually use in their storage shed. My sister-in-law has taken it over for growing their microgreens - sunflower sprouts, wheatgrass, and some other things I don't remember. Then, there are a bunch of jars with sprouting seeds. I should take a photo of that sometime, but the lighting isn't so hot in that spot. 


  • Julie

    Julie on Aug. 4, 2012, 4:48 p.m.

    Hi Renee, I bought your book yesterday and I am looking forward to trying it out! Your vacation looks idyllic. Is that your parents' house in the first picture? Wow! What a lovely place!


    • renee

      renee on Aug. 4, 2012, 5:13 p.m.

      Yep, that's their house. I wrote all about it while we lived here last summer. If you scroll through the archives from last summer (May 2011, June 2011, July 2011) you'll see lots of the photos of their house and the area. It's very beautiful here. 


  • Cinnamon

    Cinnamon on Aug. 4, 2012, 6:41 p.m.

    Everything looks beautiful. What serenity and love pouring out of your post. I love it! How fun to have family that you ENJOY ♥

    All the food sounds yummy and looks fabulous~



  • kelsey

    kelsey on Aug. 4, 2012, 6:58 p.m.

    hi renee

    your little vacation looks wonderful- beauiful photos as usual. I wondered if i may ask a question? I looked through your archives a bit but thought that maybe at some point you posted about kitchen appliances (the good and bad)? I am in the market for a juicer and in the past I had one but found it terribly ineficient and wasteful- I know newer models are much better and thought maybe you might have an idea about good brands that can be found in canada. (I wasnt sure if your family makes juice or just smoothies?) thank you! kelsey


    • renee

      renee on Aug. 16, 2012, 11:45 a.m.

      Kelsey, our family doesn't juice. We've talked about it but honestly I'm scared our grocery bill will go up (with no garden to harvest from) even more so I've put the brakes on it for now. My brother's family has this Omega model or something very similiar and they like it. In my post on kitchen appliances there is juicer talk in the comments, starting with this thread, in which Jennifer Sanders recommends her Breville.


  • Catherine Forest

    Catherine Forest on Aug. 4, 2012, 7:56 p.m.

    Oh, I am so envious! I would love to hang in the kitchen with you and your sister-in-law! I love talking sprouts, kombucha and preparing delicious raw vegan food with passionate people!


  • desilou

    desilou on Aug. 5, 2012, 1:01 a.m.

    "Like iron sharpening iron, we all three are learning from each other." - You really caught me with that line. I'm a bit in awe, and admittedly a bit envious, of your week, and family. What a blessing to have like minded women in your life to share and learn from each other on food & family.


  • Nina

    Nina on Aug. 7, 2012, 1:44 a.m.

    It must be inspiring be with like-minded people!

    My eight year old daughter was recently diagnosed with two auto immune diseases - Celiac and Graves. I've spent a lot of time researching (and crying) and trying to figure out what to do to help her. She is now gluten, wheat, and dairy free (except for limited goat cheese)and on medication for the Graves disease (the reason for my tears). We have always eaten 'clean', but I am finding it to be more of an uphill battle as I try to use nutrition to heal her. (We have an integrative doctor guiding us on the nutrition end.) She is having an extremely hard time, especially with the fact that other people don't eat like we do. (Argh! to all those people who feed their children junk and make it seem like the 'norm'.) So a bit of envy to you to be surrounded by people concerned and aware that eating well most of the time makes a difference!

    Thanks again for your openness and continued inspiration.


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