We've had alerts about how bad our air quality is the past few days, you know, where they tell you not to go outside and breathe? And the story is being reported from a school where a line of cars is idling along coming to pick up their children. I know kids aren't allowed to walk to school these days and I guess if the air isn't fit to breathe you don't want them out there walking around in it anyway, but we talk so much about how fat the kids are these days and maybe they could use a little exercise and maybe all those cars going back and forth to all the schools every day isn't helping the air quality all that much.
Apparently they weren't reporting from the school because of all the cars coming and going adding to the pollution, though, but rather because the kids were being kept inside at recess.
We have a shift in the wind this morning, though, with some cooler air coming down from the bay area, and along with it is the smell of onions. Lots of onion fields between here and there I guess.
And, oddly enough, and adding to the air pollution, is the fact that we have had not one, but two haystack fires within the past couple of weeks. I had never heard of a haystack fire before, but I guess where there are animals that need to be fed, there are feedlots with lots and lots of bales of hay stacked up, and where there is hay and hot weather, there must be a little spontaneous combustion going on. Now, when you think of a haystack, you think of those picturesque ones where the hay is stacked up like a teepee in a pastoral setting with birds flying around and fluffy clouds in the sky. No, the haystack fires should have been called balestack fires, because they were huge, and I mean HUGE, stacks of hay bales. Lots of money worth of hay, too, with damages in the tens of thousands of dollars. And this is what a haystack fire looks like.
Not much else of any excitement is going on around here, just the usual cat poop scooping and such. I did actually fix myself some real food for dinner last night, some apricot almond chicken and I even ate a vegetable with the chicken, some cooked up carrots. I had thought about riding the bike over to the sandwich shop but it was very hot out and I also though about the $7.00 that the sandwich shop charges for a sandwich, and decided to save that $7.00 and also save me sweating and breathing in the dirty air alert air.
I'll share the apricot almond chicken recipe here, I may have shared it before but it bears repeating because it is so EASY to make, and me being an I like sweet foods type person, absolutely delicious.
Apricot Almond Chicken Breasts
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
3/4 cup apricot preserves
1/4 cup chicken broth
1 tbsp honey mustard
1/4 cup sliced almond (or however many almonds you want, silly to measure them, just sprinkle them on the chicken already!)
1/ Sprinkle the chicken with the salt and pepper, place in a baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake uncovered at 350 for 15 minutes.
2/ Combine the preserves, broth and mustard in a small bowl and pour over the chicken. Sprinkle the almonds on and bake 15-20 minutes longer or until done.
EAT. YUM. DELICIOUS. Actually, when I make this recipe I only use 2 chicken breasts but the same amount of sauce so that there is lots of extra sauce and each bite of chicken is deliciously apricoty and almondy. And SO EASY TO MAKE!