Goals for July

I. Drink More Water

This is an ongoing goal of mine, as I drink too much coffee. Especially when it is so hot out it is so important to get enough water.  The Mayo Clinic advises men should drink 3.7 liters and women should drink 2.7 liters; that is a lot of water! However, anytime I start drinking more water I always feel better and find it is worth the effort.

Stationery
II.  Write more letters

I found this stationery while cleaning recently and I love it. I think it is pretty enough to frame.
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III. Finish my blue scarf

I am just past the half way point and hope to finish it this month.

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IV. Make more time to write

I am working on two fiction projects and I was able to make time to write in June and I plan on making more time in July.

V. Eat more greens

I have started eating like a bear about to go into hibernation while in shelter in place and am making an effort to eat more greens. What this means to me is anything green: avocados, cucumbers, spinach, lettuce, or pears. I love salad but have not been eating it as much in recent months.

I should add I have no idea what bears going into hibernation eat, but I imagine it is whatever they can find. Which is why I find my behavior analogous.

Thank you so much for reading this blog post.

 

This and That

This post is a mix of a few things I wanted to blog about.

I.

One thing I have been focusing on since the shelter in place started is fighting procrastination.   I am writing to share one of my favorite sayings.  “we cannot control our results, we can only control our efforts.” I do not know who came up with this first, but anytime I look at a project or a goal, this is something I think about.  Just wanted to share it in case you had not heard or read it yet.

II.

In honor of the upcoming red white and blue holiday, my current nail polish is essie’s “after school boy blazer.” It is the prettiest dark shade of navy blue.  I did two coats of the navy blue and used the quick dry drops as it is not quick dry polish, but regular.

Here is a picture of the bottle:

 

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III.

Here are a few pictures I took of flowers in bloom around here. I believe the first one is called an eden rose. It was in bloom a few weeks ago.

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Thank you for reading this blog post.

Blanket to Purse

E9A4A410-FB1F-41D8-925D-DAC2397F7175I had started making this project a few years ago for one of my nieces when she was born, but it was inadvertently stored away and today she is past the baby blanket stage by several years.

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I believe this project was being made with a crochet hook and I was doing a v stitch. I first made a v stitch baby blanket at my old job where employees would get together on their lunch break once a month or so to make blankets for charity.  I am a very slow crocheter, but some people fly. They go so unbelievably fast.

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So what to do with this swath of pink? I have decided to fold it into a purse that she can use to keep all her little things in for trips to the playground whenever they open again.

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I have a crochet hook and hope to work on this soon. I hope I am right that it is crochet and is a v stitch! We’ll see. Here’s to a healthy and (hopefully) happy July!

Thank you so much for reading this blog post.

Cook Book Nook

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I appreciate cookbooks. I like the ones that are user-generated the best. What do I mean by this? Ones that are written and produced by organizations. Church or school pta cookbooks for example. These to me are far more interesting than ones that corporations print because the recipes are sometimes generations-old and required more creativity, like cakes made with tomato soup.  This blog post is about where I am keeping my cookbooks since unearthing them after our move.

This cookbook nook is on an old sewing table in the corner of our apparently pink dining room.  I say apparently pink because neither of us remember looking at a pink dining room when we looked at the home to buy it. However, as of yet it does not bother us.

 

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I believe this is supposed to be a bread basket, but I thought it would be great for displaying cookbooks. My mother was (and still is) very smart and kept her cookbooks very high up away from us and any dog. The cupboard was so high none of us could open the door to it. Probably for the best.

I like to keep the cookbooks where I can see them and flip through them. Not nearly as photogenic, but equally important is a binder I have made for all those scrap recipes; the ones I call my mom and aunt and say how do you make this and they tell me over the phone and I jot it down or they email me and I print them. That I am keeping on my desk.

Thank you for reading my blog post.

Why I Love Knitting

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I am plugging along with my blue scarf. It is a basic garter stitch which means I knit every row and I love it. I find knitting to be calming, productive, and a creative outlet. I believe everyone needs a creative outlet. Whether they are a ‘crafting’ type person or not. So for me, at this time, that crafting is knitting.

 

I will be forever thankful to my Grandmother for answering my unending and inane questions about what she was doing, my friend Natalie for getting me my own pair of knitting needles and yarn for my birthday one year, and the women of the former Yarn Co. on the upper west side for helping me with my various projects.

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I can’t believe how much yarn is left in this skein. I decreased the number of stitches I casted on with compared to the previous project and it has really extended the life of this yarn so to speak, which is excellent because I can’t get to a yarn store yet. I know there are a number of great yarn shops online, but I am going to wait until I can (hopefully) feel the yarn in person. Off to my real responsibilities!

 

Thank you for reading this blog post.

 

Crockpot Glory

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Today is an exciting day for me because I am finally getting to use my crockpot. A quick thank you to my Aunt Dianna for tips on using it! I am heating up one of my mother’s slow cooker staples: meatballs.

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I had three jars of raos added to the ceramic pot. I thawed in the refrigerator frozen meatballs. I will cook pasta later to accompany the meat. My first choice would be Italian subs and make sandwiches, but we don’t have mozzarella or the bread, but we have rotini, so pasta wins.

I have the setting at high for the meat because the guidebook says if it’s coming into the pot from the refrigerator you should cook it on high for two hours then switch to low. I will then probably keep it at low for a few hours.
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I forgot to take sticker off the side of it and now I don’t want to risk burning my hand trying to take it off so I will wait until it cools.

Thank you for reading this blog post.

 

 

 

Lavender, Anyone?

When my husband and I were dating, he brought me a bucket with soil and lavender seeds. I watered it and put it by the window in my room of an apartment I shared with a roommate. Eventually the plant grew mold ( or so it looked to me) and I decided it needed more sun.  This apartment was on the bottom floor of an apartment complex in Queens and probably needed two or three dehumidifiers. The plant was moved to the front lawn in a garden box. To me, this seemed like a good move. Save the plant.

The next time I was talking to my future husband did he inquire as to the well being of the lavender. I explained it had to be moved outside. He explained it was probably no longer there. “It’s Queens. This is not the midwest.” Sure enough it was gone. Fast forward 10 years or so and we buy a home, in winter with no sense of flowers under earth.

To my surprise what do we see out in front of our new shelter? What is growing out front by the ‘needs to be power washed fence’ are two huge blooms of lavender.

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I should add, I believe these to be lavender. There are many flower varieties but it looks like it to me. I can see someone writing in the comments, Katie those are rhododendrons! So be it.  It will always be lavender to me.

 

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One thing I make the children do every day in shelter in place is water the plants. Two days ago my son grabbed the purple pedals and said “flower.” Delightful.

Stay safe and thank you for reading this post.

nail polish review

A few months back I posted a few pictures of some essie quick dry nail polish that I had bought at the drug store and was curious if it worked. If you are not a painter of nails, usually it takes at least two coats of paint and if you want the color to last a shiny top coat and or a quick dry clear polish. Well! Yesterday the sun was out and the deck was empty which was a good time to paint some nails. It was time for a preschool pedicure. My daughter requested – pink.

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We used the bottle on the right. “expressie”  To me, the most important aspect of this was making sure the polish was dry so that it didn’t get where we didn’t want it to go. Wow! It dried. I was so pleased. It was dry within like 5 minutes. Of course I made her sit for an extra ten minutes to be sure. I was so excited! I am going to paint my own toes with the dark brown today.

Also, as an amateur pedicurist I couldn’t believe how shiny her toes were hours later! Let me at this time admit, this is not a widely read blog and this is not a sponsored post. I should really just say this is probably the least-read blog on the internet.

I am just so happy with the product. How happy? The next time my husband goes to this store I am going to ask for more colors. The only *negative* that I remember when I bought these is that they had a very limited selection of colors. For example I only remember seeing 8 expressie polishes to the 50 or 60 they have for regular polish.  There is nothing like a new color on one’s nails to add variety to shelter in place to boost morale!

Stay safe and thank you for reading this blog post.

 

Cupcakes for Breakfast

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Last week Thursday, I made cupcakes first thing in the morning. I feel that the wackier the world gets, the nicer I should be to the people around me. I thought it would be fun to surprise my daughter. I had been promising her that we would make cupcakes for weeks, but it got very busy and we baked nothing.

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So cupcakes for breakfast it was. I really liked this because it was a great way of fighting procrastination. I made the strawberry cake mix and split the batch between chocolate frosting and strawberry frosting.  I find the longer we are in shelter in place, the more I find to do at home and the more I need to stave off procrastination.

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I have been knitting and am very excited about the blue yarn. I am also very excited to go to my almost local yarn store when this is over. I say almost because there is a Michael’s about 5 minutes from us, but there specialty seems to be heavier yarns for the big trendy projects, whereas a local yarn store has high quality merino wool for example that is good for making baby booties, blankets, and hats for all ages.

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Thank you for reading this blog post.

Flora

What is it about flowers? Well, over the past few days I have been unable to stop myself from taking pictures of various neighbors’ flowers. I thought I would share them here in a pictorial. 

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Thank you for reading this blog post.