It’s been a little while since I last posted, and I’ll tell you why. Of course, there’s the usual busyness of life with family, school, church, and housework (not to mention keeping up with new Mad Men episodes!), which is enough to keep me from blogging, but last week there was something else that needed my attention:
See, the week before last, all three of my kids had gotten sick–in the space of 24 hours, every single one of them was called home by the school nurse–and then of course I got it, too. Your basic someone-please-put-me-out-of-my-misery stomach flu. I got into bed at 7 PM that night and lay there for two or three hours just trying to pray myself out of it before I eventually fell asleep. Then, even once we all recovered, everybody was still in a funk. I’m fine overlooking cranky behavior when my kids are ill. I get it. It comes with the kid-sickness territory. But when the crankiness goes on for interminable days after the illness has dissipated, it’s hard to take. I vented my frustration to my husband one morning after dealing with some pretty extreme attitude problems, and he reminded me that it had been quite awhile since I had taken a personal retreat…or, as he likes to call it, an Emergency Vacation.
Ever since my firstborn was a toddler, I’ve tried to get away about once a year for a couple of days of quiet, prayer, and generally doing what I want, not what I have to. It’s wonderful tradition that always leaves me feeling refreshed and ready to get back to my real life. So when my husband brought it up, I didn’t need much encouragement before I jumped up, grabbed my laptop, and started making plans. Within a couple of hours, I had booked two nights doing something I’ve always wanted to try: a farm stay. If you haven’t heard of farm stays, they’re pretty much exactly what they sound like: (drum roll please…..) staying on a farm. In this case, I checked out farmstayus.com and located a small family farm outside Prescott, AZ, two hours from my home, that has a condo-sized cabin available for rent. A few days later I found myself sipping my morning coffee on a porch overlooking a beautiful valley with the sounds of chickens clucking in the background. Three Sparrows Farm was absolute bliss.
If you’ve ever had a hankering to get away from it all (but still be within driving distance of civilization), you couldn’t do much better than this place. A 2-acre property set on a hillside, 3 Sparrows has chickens, goats, and a donkey, all of which you are welcomed to feed, pet, and/or hold. (Except the donkey. Feeding and petting, yes. Holding, good luck.)
After two days of peace and quiet, including a hike up Thumb Butte and walking around downtown Prescott, I was totally pleased with my experience and definitely came home better equipped to deal with whatever life might throw at me. (Check out the farm and info about the farm stay at 3sparrowsfarm.com)
So, speaking of real life, let’s get to the other reason for this post: Broccoli Quiche. Because what’s the first things a mom has to do when she gets back from a trip? (I mean, after laundry?) Make dinner, of course! Quiche is one of my favorite go-to easy dinners, as I’ve mentioned here and here. Coming home from my getaway, broccoli quiche was a simple way to get dinner on the table without a lot of fuss. Served with roasted potatoes, it’s a satisfying but not overpowering brunch for dinner. Or just brunch for brunch. In any case, tasty, packed with veggies, and great for take-to-work leftovers.
Now that my 2015 Emergency Vacation is done, any recommendations for next year?
(Adapted from Allrecipes.com)
1 unbaked pie crust
2 Tbsp. butter
3 c. broccoli, chopped into florets
1/2 medium-large onion, chopped
1 tsp. minced garlic
1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
1/3 c. shredded cheddar cheese
3/4 c. milk
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spread pie crust in a 9-inch pie dish.
2. In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add onions, garlic, and broccoli and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft and broccoli is bright green. Spoon vegetables into prepared pie crust and sprinkle with mozzarella and cheddar.
3. In a medium bowl, beat eggs, then mix in milk, salt, and pepper. Pour egg mixture over vegetables and cheese.
4. Bake 40-45 minutes or until eggs are set in the center. (Check quiche frequently throughout baking time, as it is notoriously finicky about how long it takes to set.) Cool at least 5 minutes before slicing and serving.
Serves 4-5 as a main dish.