Tuesday Things

My favorite picture of this bunch is probably the reflection of me, sitting in front of the washer, waiting for the spin cycle to kick in. We’ve done that plenty since Christmas, when the pump on our washing machine went out, and have all impatiently awaited its replacement (holidays, COVID, shipping). If you ever doubt that a fully automatic washing machine is a luxury, tie yourself to it for the rinse and spin cycles for every single load for a couple of days. If you really want to cement it in your brain, do it for a couple of weeks. You’ll 1) evaluate whether every piece of laundry really needs to be washed and 2) renew the awe you feel at your grandmother who used a manual wringer washer until she was 35 (with six kids). We’ll be back to a regularly functioning washer this week and none of us are sad about it.

Almost a full week into 2021, I have a word (play) and some intentions. I’m using a workbook purchased from The Handwriting Club on etsy to be a bit more “analog” this year. Abram told me I needed one more to fill up my intentions checklist but I think I’m going to leave a little room for the universe and wait until I’m a little further in the year before I add that one. (I bought V & A their own workbooks too, but they aren’t as enthused.)

Let’s talk some -ings. I don’t have many, but that’s okay.

Reading: I have a few things going which is unusual for me (I tend to be a serial monogamist when it comes to books). How to Do Nothing by Jenny Odell, a reread of The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery, and Long Live the Tribe of Fatherless Girls by T Kira Madden. I’ve been absolutely craving a completely indulgent Sidney Sheldon or Danielle Steele novel which is perhaps why I keep picking up and starting new books.

Watching: I binged Bridgerton on Netflix in a couple of days. Someone told me it was a cross between Gossip Girl and The Crown and I’m going to say that’s true – in so far as it’s a 95/5 cross, with GG being the 95%. It’s quite sexually graphic in parts (unnecessarily so in my usually not a prude opinion) and sometimes a little ridiculous, but it’s also fun and filled with eye candy (of the costuming, settings, and people kind).

Knitting: Still Jesse’s socks. I was in a mad dash to get them finished before Christmas which didn’t happen and while I’m only about 20 rows from the toe I feel like I’m on some weird knitting treadmill.

Making: All the food prep. Jesse and I decided it might be good to reset our tastebuds and try a Whole 30. We started January 2 and I can’t say all the recipes have been winners but these coconut curry meatballs were amazing, as is this hash which we’ve always liked. Be prepared for a whole list of linked recipes as the month goes on.

Listening to: The Stardew soundtrack on Spotify. My brother got me the game for Christmas so we could have socially distant hangs and I love the music. It makes me happy when I need to do some drudge work (like manually drain the washing machine, or wash dishes, or fold laundry). This is also my most played song in the last couple of weeks which is 100% my sister. (Any music that is even kind of cool is almost always a recommendation from one of my siblings.)

So that’s me. How has your 2021 started? Any intentions/resolutions/words you’d like to share? What are you -ing?

Tuesday Things

In 9th grade, I beat Mike Lankfer to win the gym class ping pong championship. I’m still proud because that guy was a JERK. Abram is not a jerk, but I still love beating him. He beats me every time we play Monopoly so it’s only fair. (He doesn’t agree.)

I know I usually fill these Tuesday Things with whatever it is I’m reading, watching, knitting, etc. but there just isn’t much in the way of -ing the last week so I’m just going to ramble.

I’m homesick for Michigan. We cancelled both our summer and fall trips but scheduled four days in May with a wish, a hope, and a prayer. It’s a tiny little cabin on the Pere Marquette river that reminds me of my great-grandpa’s place. It has a decent cancellation policy, but I want to fish for trout and read books and see my dad and grandma. I miss the big lake and the dunes and the sand and the woods and home. I never realized how much my heart is buoyed by my trips home.

I sorted/purged/cleaned/organized my office and labeled everything in the hopes that when people go looking for something they can 1) easily find it and 2) easily return it. I ordered myself a 2021 notebook, started a food journal (and start a Whole 30 on January 2), and ordered seeds for the garden. I’m finalizing a list of knitting projects based off the things I have stashed.

The kids and I were watching videos from back in March when school was cancelled and I was making pancakes and we were putting together puzzles and everything pandemic felt a little bit like an adventure. I bemusedly watch the videos of that naive woman as she walks through the house and smiles in the mirror like a rebel in her pajamas at 10AM. December me picked Abram up from school in a flannel nightgown and can’t remember the last time I’ve worn “real” clothes. The pandemic doesn’t feel like an adventure anymore. It feels like a group project where I’m being graded on not just the finished product, but everyone’s effort while being assigned slacker partners and much, much higher stakes and then…a little bit of hope. (Yay, vaccine!!!)

I deleted my FB account (again) and deleted the IG app on my phone. I know a lot of people were deleting and talking about privacy issues with the most recent update but my reasoning has much more to do with the fact that I am a horrible consumer of social media. I compulsively use it and I feel bad about myself for 1) compulsively using it and 2) not living a life as IG worthy as some and 3) feeling the kind of crap that I did in middle school because of behavior that’s middle school.

I really, really appreciate you listening to me ramble. Sending hugs and warm wishes.

P.S. I need to take down our tree – you can’t even walk by it without needles falling – but I don’t want to give up pretty lights. Do you think putting twinkle lights in my pothos is overkill?

Tuesday Things

Just a few non-sequiturs before we get to the things:

That picture of those freshly crushed cranberries and sugar? I wish I could bottle that smell and send it to all of you. But you can make it at home by pulsing a bag of fresh cranberries in a food processor and making this recipe (or another recipe that uses fresh crushed cranberry).

This week has been hard. Pandemic living, sure, but also life. If you have extra good juju or prayers or happy thoughts to send this way, I’ll take ’em.

I signed up for a “fresh start” organizational challenge. Free with a list of tasks that isn’t overwhelming and motivation to check off some things I really need to do anyway? Yes, please. I’m looking to head into January a little less cluttered than before.

Knitting: Hats and socks. I have three pairs of socks in need of blocking which I’m hoping to get done this week. I’m pretty sure I’m going to set a goal to knit one pair of socks per month next year but I’m going to add on to that goal that I actually get them blocked that same month. I’m horrible about finishing a pair and setting it aside and then rushing like a crazy person to get them blocked and dry.

Watching: The Offspring on Netflix. I would never have picked it but a friend recommended it based on another friend recommending it and I love it. Kids and I are also rewatching The British Baking Show because that’s the kind of spirit we need in our lives right now.

Reading: Finished reading Pretty Little Wife by Darby Kane. I didn’t like it but I’m realizing that dark/mystery/someone is married to a pyscho books aren’t my genre.

Making: Christmas lists. And then remaking them. And then again. We’re at the point of the year where I am almost done but I ordered some things I’ve forgotten about (or maybe didn’t order them but thought I did) and really need about two hours with a pad of paper, a pen, and my email inbox followed by a quick visit to Christmas present storage space in my basement.

I hope you’re having a good week where you are. The sun is shining so I’m going take a walk and “blow the stink off” as my mom used to say. I’d love to hear what you are -ing this week.

(Black) Friday Finds

In the spirit of Christmas shopping the Friday after Thanksgiving, I’m linking up some favorite online goodies.

  1. Beautiful beeswax candles.
  2. This and some “ammo” for a little (or not so little).
  3. Enamel pins: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10.
  4. With this to display them.
  5. A lovely apron.
  6. Classy but also punk.
  7. Pretty stained glass.
  8. A good puzzle.
  9. My go-to kiddo gift.
  10. A planner for next year.
  11. A craft to stay busy through the winter months.
  12. Some favorite games: 1, 2.
  13. A book of the month subscription*
  14. An every day pair of earrings.
  15. And a pretty dish to keep them.

Happy browsing!

*If you purchase a subscription from this link, I receive a free book credit.

Tuesday Things

Have you seen the funny/not funny viral tiktok where the woman lists off her 2020 goals? Yeah. I grabbed my 2020 bullet journal to get my Christmas list organized and realized I haven’t put a new monthly tab in since May. Short of a lone list in September where I tried to get my act back together, I have nothing but scribbles and a few random notes written down since May 30. And now the Christmas list.

I’ve changed up my instagram follows and set a screen time limit where Jesse holds the passcode. I’ve limited my news intake and no longer allow myself to seek out the comment section of our local health department/school district FB page. I still cry daily, survive more than thrive, shrug a lot. Some days I do all the things. Some days I feel like walking to the mailbox is more than I can handle. Some days I feel like that’s what thriving in a pandemic looks like.

Knitting: Hats. No pattern to link. Using bulky yarn I cast on somewhere between 30-40 stitches, knit between 9.5-11″ sometimes decreasing for the crown. Sometimes I make a pompom. I like that I can get one on and off the needles in about two hours. I’ve got my eye on making these for next year but not buying any more yarn in 2020. Finished a pair of socks. Cast on a pair of socks.

Watching: Finished Dash + Lily and wish I would have rationed those out a little slower. The Holiday Calendar on Netflix (fluffy, G rated Christmas romance). Midnight at the Magnolia on Netflix (generally the same thing). Drain the Oceans (with Violet) on Disney+. I’m looking forward to watching Hillbilly Elegy which I read last year.

Reading: Not a thing. I have a list. I can’t decide what I want to read off the list so I’m reading nothing.

Making: Plans for Thanksgiving dinner. This, this, and this are on the menu along with the classic green bean casserole, mashed potatoes and gravy, and of course, pumpkin pie. Since Abram doesn’t like pie and I don’t think it’s Thanksgiving without dessert, I’m also making chocolate chip cookies. (This is the time of year when I’m extremely grateful for the double oven.)

So that’s us. What are you -ing this week? Wishing you all a very wonderful Thanksgiving – even if it isn’t the one you had hoped or planned – and with that, I just want to say how grateful I am for the penpal friendships we have created, this year especially. XOXO.