Monday, February 20, 2023

Master To-Do List and Menu Plan Monday - February 20, 2023

It's a beautiful spring-like morning here on the tallgrass prairie of southwest Missouri!

Cream Colored Crocus Blooming in My Yard

It's 48 degrees and the sun is shining. The birds are singing and the crocuses are blooming, and, well, where I live, it just doesn't get much better than that in mid-February! I'm ecstatic!!!

That is in spirit, of course; physically, I'm still feeling pretty puny. I've had one ailment or another going on since the beginning of November. This last round has gone on for a solid six weeks now and I'm tired of it, but I continue to press forward no matter what. I'm thankful for the strength and resolve to do so. 

I worked Friday and Saturday. Friday I ran the nature center while the guys did a prescribed burn. 

Prescribed Burn @ Prairie State Park - March 2022

It's always intriguing to watch the flames leap high in the air as they lick the prairie clean of tall grasses and thick undergrowth, and there's nothing on earth as interesting as a blackened clean-swept prairie after a prescribed burn. 

Rock Exposed After a Prescribed Burn
@ Prairie State Park - March 2018

Every rock, rivulet, bone (sometimes an entire skeleton!) of a deceased animal, shed (deer antler), etc. is exposed and the whole landscape looks rather other-worldly. 

Bison Bones On the Blackened Prairie - March 2022

It's fun to go trapsing across a blackened prairie to see what treasures of nature the fire has revealed. 

Prescribed Burn @ Prairie State Park - November 2021

Once I found a mostly burned nest of some ground-nesting bird with the clutch of long-ago hatched egg shells, singed, but still intact. Unfortunately, I don't have a picture of it, but that was probably my neatest blackened-prairie find to date! really got off-track with THAT! Didn't I? I'm sorry! Let's get on with today's post...shall we? 😟

American Bald Eagle
Photo Taken February 19, 2022

This week's master to-do list...

This week promises to be a little slower than the past few have been and, truthfully, I'm glad! I need some down time and rest.

- Clean house
- Do laundry
- Make THM pancakes (freeze)
- Bake (bread and muffins - freeze)
- Get gas and check fluids in car
- Write and mail a letter to a sick friend
- Go to the bank
- Get in a visit with Carla
- Work

"Nana nana boo boo!" - Febrary 19, 2023

This week's menu plan...

I plan to share an update on the winter food challenge this week, but will tell you that I went grocery shopping after church yesterday afternoon. My house is stocked with fresh and nutritious whole foods and I'm so thankful! Meals this week will include...

- Oven-roasted chicken breast with garlic roasted radishes, corn on the cob, and fresh asparagus
- Green chili burritos with black beans and rice
- Chicken ranch salad
Pasta with sauce, meatballs, salad, and garlic bread 
- Oven-roasted chicken breast with baked sweet potato topped with sauteed greens with onion and brussel sprouts
- Enchilada casserole with black beans and rice
- Homemade pizza

Well, the day is getting away from me. so I guess I better get off of here and get busy. You have a nice day and a great week ahead and I'll talk with you again soon! 

Until next time...

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  1. Prairie life is so different than what I'm used to and it's so beautiful! Your menu sounds amazing! I'm late this week dealing with a very unfun cold. I really thought I'd get through the season without catching one - but it caught me! Lol I hope you have a very blessed rest of your week. xo

    1. It is very different, indeed, Carrie, as well I know. (Ely is my second home!) <3 I used to sit in Missouri and pine away wanting to go north (and I still do at times) but, for the most part, over the years I've come to appreciate and embrace the beauty of God's creation no matter where I'm at or what I'm doing. Kind a "bloom where you are planted" thing. If you ever make it down this way I'd love to give you a tour of the tallgrass prairie. Just give me a holler in an advance. :) I'm sorry that you've got a cold and hope you're feeling much better very soon. You have a blessed day, too, and thanks for stopping by! Blessings, Sweet Friend! <3

  2. Beautiful crocus! I'm so ready for some spring blooms around here. My daffodils on the south side of the house have some buds on them though with the cold temps coming, I'm afraid it's much too early. Hope you are feeling better today! Have a great rest of your week!

    1. Thanks, Jean! I have more crocus up here (even some white ones that I didn't know I had) and my daylilies (the ones that will eventually have orange flowers on them) are up about six-inches tall this afternoon. Amber told me earlier today that her daffodils are blooming. Any way we go, spring is sure to arrive soon! Am feeling some better, but still not 100%. Have a great rest of the week!

  3. Been a lovely February Spring, I love it. Sorry though to read about your health. Those battles can really suck the life out of a day. Sending well wishes.

    Wow, on the burning. Why do they burn all that? Looks interesting to walk through after though also a little sad that it had to be destroyed. I'm not familiar with this process.

    Hope your sick friend feels better.

    PS: I LOVE black beans!!!!

    1. Thanks, H.W.! I appreciate the well wishes!

      As for your question about the prescribed has always been a part of life on the tallgrass prairie.

      In days of yore, lightening strikes would naturally start fire, but, knowing the effect that fire had on the prairie, and the importance of it, Native Americans would sometimes start them.

      At one time 1/3 of the state that I live in (Missouri) was covered by tallgrass prairie; today less than 1% remains. The park that I work at is the largest tract of tallgrass prairie left in the state with just under 4,000 acres.

      Tallgrass prairie is a natural habitat for hundreds of species of plants and animals. Without fire prairie would grow up in trees and shrubs and the plants and animals that live there would die out completely. Without fire the prairie could not survive.

      Thanks for your question, H.W.! I hope this answer helps you to understand as to why it's necessary, even today, to continue the natural way of tallgrass prairie by conducting prescribed burns on a regular basis.



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