As my husband and I look at what we’ve always wanted for our family, one thing that comes back to the forefront of our mind is having some traditions.
We lost everything before we moved out to New Mexico, and we knew it would be just a matter of time before we were settled down and starting to think of new traditions we wanted to start with our family.

When I was in the hospital with pneumonia this past February, I had two options…go nuts listening to the rantings of a crazy elderly diabetic woman with no teeth in her mouth, missing fingers, freshly amputated toes, half blind and who could only partially speak because she had four strokes, or watch the food network. LOL

Of course I chose food network, even though my crazy roomie was pretty funny at times and super sweet, I began to formulate the first tradition in my head…Sunday brunches.

I wanted this to be our first official tradition each week and I quickly became very obsessed with not only the food network, but also the cooking channel.

I am always wondering now what I’ll make next Sunday, what kind of work day will it be, who will be joining us and what kind of cocktails we’ll be serving.

This past Sunday was our second official brunch and as each successive brunch passes, I can more effectively formulate in my mind the roles and responsibilities each family member can and should have.

Dom is itching to get in the kitchen also and whip up some brunch, so, soon enough I’ll hand over the kitchen to him. I didn’t want to put him on some sort of schedule for making brunches since he has work shifts away from home a few Sundays each month, but we’ll keep it open for him when he feels the urge.

Brunch isn’t just about coming together and eating here, it’s also about doing some much needed work around the property. The more hands the better.

This past Sunday we broke ground and planted our first apricot tree.

I was out on Saturday shopping for some decorative wood mulch and I came across some beautiful fruit trees for sale.

I chose for our first tree a Moorpark Apricot. That’s me on the left planting our newest family member in the ground.

We also planted hostas in the courtyard in an area that is prone to almost a full day of shade from the house.

This particular area does get sun in the morning, but by 11:30 am it is starting to shade out, so I wanted to put a plant that I know would be successful in that area…the hosta.

Vicki and I prepped the areas of the courtyard we would be working in on Sunday by getting all the cardboard boxes broken down and tape removed.

We saved almost all the boxes we used moving into the house and stored them in the shed. We needed to remove the packing tape though since it was plastic. After doing all that work on Saturday afternoon, we realized we would need another layer of cardboard laid as weed barrier, so that became Noah’s job on Sunday afternoon.

Noah is usually pretty awesome when it comes to taking on tasks around the property, but his allergies were getting the best of him this past Sunday and he was under the weather a bit.

As a side note about the photo of Noah to the right…that is the interior of what will eventually become the main section of the chicken coop.

We’ve designed the coop and it is only a matter of time before we start working on that big project!

Oh, and a secondary side note…the first photo in this entry is our dining room as it morphs!

New chairs, shelves and cabinets, and next will be window treatments (if our fabric samples ever get here!) Everything is coming together nicely and as we sit in our dining room each day, the ideas keep coming for putting the finishing touches on the room.

Now back to this past Sunday:



Gina pulling tape off of boxes.

Simmi and I mixing soil and adding shredded paper.

So, what can an almost four year special needs toddler do as her official role during Sunday brunch? Be as cute as ever and provide the much needed comic relief…what could be more sublime than that?

She can’t help with planting…YET. She loves to jump on what I’ve planted (I learned my lesson last year planting basil and rosemary), but Simmi can help mix the dirt!

She and I had a blast mixing up our organic soil and then I made one HUGE mistake.

It completely slipped my mind that I was adding coconut husks to my soil, and the poor girl broke out really bad.

She is allergic to tree nuts, and coconut is a considered a tree nut. She started getting welts all over her arms, and then the welts spread to her legs, the trunk of her body and her neck and face.

I had to give her a massive dose of Benadryl, and she finally got some relief from the itching and pain. After giving her the massive dose of Benadryl, she decided to put on a little show and dance in the back courtyard for us. I wish I had my camera for that because she was loopy, chatty and totally precious!

All in all this Sunday’s brunch was a success. I didn’t write about our first official brunch because frankly it was a disaster!

I mean, the food was awesome, I got totally blitzed, a lot of work was done outside, my dad was busy assembling the new wall unit in the dining room, but brunch was about three or four hours LATE! LOL

Yup, I under estimated how much time I’d need for a new recipe I was using, and then I under estimated how much flour I had available in the house!

This weekend I was able to get everything on the table by 10:20 am which is a whole lot better than four hours late.

Brunch will be at 10:00 am each Sunday, so 20 minutes I consider to be fashionably late. TaHEE! Anyway, this coming Sunday will be a very special brunch since Dom and I will be celebrating our 7 year wedding anniversary.

Its amazing how time flies by and how each year our marriage and life together grows stronger and more pithy by the day. I am absolutely crazy about that man of mine, and each day I love him even more. I’m glad that we’ll be celebrating with an anniversary brunch.

I’m hoping to get my act together and put the recipes for our brunches up each week. This past Sunday I didn’t take pictures of the food or write down how I made each dish, but as I get a handle on brunches and time constraints, I’ll do my best to take photos and get proper recipes together.