Tag Archives: nutrition

crockpot whole chicken

The Cool Grandmums are going to be so proud. I purchased a whole chicken at Trader Joe’s (organic, free-range of course) instead of the bag of frozen chicken breasts yesterday!

This is part of my quest to eat foods that are closer to their natural state. Right now it’s cooking away in crockpot so that I can run into the kitchen at dinner time, eat, and get the heck out of there. (Did I mention our kitchen is not air-conditioned? And that yesterday it was over 100 degrees in there? And how much do we pay in rent again?)

Just like probably 99% of girls I know, I have always been disgusted by the thought of handling a big raw chicken with its movable wings and scary bag of organs inside. I decided to face my fears head-on today!

As I rinsed Chicken in the sink, I realized that it might be good for me to be grossed-out about meat sometimes. It’s uncomfortable to think about what has to happen in order for us to eat meat for dinner (I read this somewhere).  Then I got all philosophical, remembering that Chicken had to die so that my family could have all kinds of good nutrients in our bodies. That train of thought led me to start thinking about Jesus and the uncomfortableness surrounding what he did, as I stood there holding that chicken. I’ve never had that experience cooking beans or vegetables.

So yes, even though I would be really happy to live on beans and rice and not have to deal with the bones and death of animals, I don’t feel it’s the most physically and spiritually satisfying route for our family right now. (I bet I’m earning some cool points with Cool Dad too!) Thank you, God, for meat!

Next up: chicken stock? chicken liver pate? I’ve gotta make use of all these parts!

But, Cool Dad, they're so cute!

The Cool Fam’s 5-times-daily pile of dishes in the sink just got a little greasier.

My whole job these days seems to be cooking and handwashing dishes for myself and the 3 males in my household, so more grease in our un-air-conditioned kitchen isn’t the best news ever. BUT, I have to say my latest food experiment is going well other than that.

See, usually I shop at Trader Joe’s and get all sorts of healthy stuff to eat–loads of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, olive oil, and lean meats like turkey and fish. I’ve rarely purchased beef because I thought it was one of those foods that was definitely bad for us. Perhaps I’ve been swayed by all the food documentaries I watched a few months ago on Netflix, or my visit to Old Sturbridge Village, or seeing the Strolling of the Heifers in Vermont, or my random internet researching, but I’m starting to believe that a little beef, eggs, butter, and whole milk yogurt might be really great for our health as long as it’s not the scary factory-farmed type. Yes, I’m talking grass-fed, organic animal products! Continue reading


Cool Dad and I had a great conversation on our way home from the Old Sturbridge Village outdoor museum yesterday about urban homesteading, which is doing things the old-fashioned way and living simply. My fascination with this idea has increased since moving to NYC and learning to live in a small space without many modern conveniences. Heck, before we moved here I didn’t even know how to warm up leftovers on the stove without a microwave! We’re certainly not roughing it by any means, but after doing laundry, dishes, and all family haircuts personally by hand, I feel I can relate just a little bit to those 18th century New Englanders we  learned about at OSV.

If it weren’t for Cool Dad, I’d probably be living in a tiny house lit by candle chandeliers, wearing a little brown dress, and living off of avocados and coconuts from my backyard. (Notice none of these are strenuous outdoor activities.) Okay, and maybe I’d have the internet too. Overall, the self-sufficiency of the early settlers is inspiring!

Meanwhile, my husband would much rather be composing a song or a story than cranking the handle of our Wonderwash. He also says he’d rather our kids do something creative instead of helping me do household tasks the time-consuming way (but think about the moral lessons they’d be learning about hard work!). According to CD, God has extended his grace to people through the invention of electric washers and dryers! By accepting this invention, CD says we can have more time for creative pursuits like music and art.

With the extra free time, I speculated that modern conveniences could also give us more time to serve people in our community. Instead of hours spent doing things myself, I could be (theoretically) doing something that helps our neighbors. But then again, the conveniences of factory-produced goods come at a cost–factory workers are often treated poorly, the environment suffers, and consumers have to pay financially and physically for over-processed food that endangers their health.

Perhaps modern homesteaders can serve their communities by making products for their neighbors so that it’s not just about serving themselves? Just like they did in the old days!

And maybe we can all be partial homesteaders in the realms of life that are particularly meaningful to us? In that case, we WONDER if we should retire the Wonderwash (hehe, couldn’t resist). My passion for healthy and real food is much stronger than my passion for clean laundry. My form of homesteading should probably be something like homeschooling and making healthy snacks for my family and our neighbors while Cool Dad does his literary and musical homesteading to change the world. Get out that quill and ink, CD!

What do you think? Is homesteading in modern times mostly about oneself, or can it be used for the common good? And the big question–would a bit of urban homesteading chores make Cool Baby and Cool Newbie more cool or less cool as adults?