sometimes mondays | 3.25.19…

“Coffee, Tea and Me…

I started drinking coffee when I was 17 and pretty much did so until 2005 – when I switched to tea. Mainly because the addition was being built – and we were without a kitchen and stove, just the microwave. Heating water for tea was was easy and I do not like instant coffee. Besides, microwave cooking has been a staple with me since 1985! All in all, it just made plain sense.

Fast forward to today: The microwave died over the weekend. To heat water, I use the electric stove. Earlier this year I opined that I might buy an electric tea kettle; suffice it to say, I have not, yet.

  • News Flash! I just remembered: I do, however, have a brand-spanking-new -still-in-the-box, electric coffee maker! I can use it for boiling water until I decide to:
    • resume morning coffee drinking or
    • buy an electric tea kettle and
    • replace the microwave – which, quiet as it’s kept, will be #3 – since we replaced the first one, bought in 2005, in 2014.

    Today’s sunrise was lovely and I’ve a lot to do this morning before I leave for my Monday Morning quilt meeting. And no doubt, shopping for a new microwave oven!

    Wishing you a great day!

    Cheers~

    sometimes mondays | 3.4.19…

    …are off …to a much slower start… than usual…. slept later… not up til 6am… puttered. wasted time… slow down…BREATHE… catch my breath… inhale… exhale… s-l-o-w-l-y. again… cloudy now – sun’s breaking through… tea mug is warm in my hand…tea, tasty in my mouth… blend of ginger peach and peach…yum… running through my mind ~ today’s agenda, this week’s, this month’s … this moment’s…BREATHE…

    (Thanks to Michelle GD for today’s take on Sometimes Mondays…)

    habit quest| february 2019…

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    (sunrise  ~ 6:36 am)

    Today, Morning Solitude and Quiet Time, extended  beyond noon. T’wasn’t in the plan but it just felt like the right thing to do on this last Tuesday of February.  I was busy reading, thinking and plotting –  focused on  my 2018 word: habit … and also becoming acquainted with the latest iOS for my Apple iPhone and iPad. I am not one to rush to install those upgrades…I usually wait til the kinks are worked out. I took several selfies and looking at them using the “LIVE” feature had me howling. Kinda creepy…but fun! That, however, wasn’t contributing to my focus for the day: zeroing in on [those] daily activities that translate into healthy habits that are good for me and help me fulfill creative urges and experiments.

    Not that I’ve not known this for probably all my adult, at least, life: habits are hard to make and break! Be that as it may, I shall press on… and one day, someday, I’ll have succeeded in accomplishing my quest. Watch this space. Are you working on making or breaking a habit?

    Joining Juliann and others for a monthly word update, here!

    Cheers~

     

    weekending | 1.22.19 …

     

    … the long awaited MLK and Women’s March on Washington weekend began for me Thurs 17th. The day started with joining my Thursday stitching friends, a quick run to Target and a  quick stop at Barnes & Noble. Yes, I bought a book; perhaps two…tho’ I can only recall the title of one as I type this post…

    My friend Linda’ was coming from Portland OR; her flight, scheduled to arrive about 6 PM, was delayed in Denver. A quick check showed her flight’s ETA: unknown. Since I was so close to the airport, I called friend Pat  (she lives about 10 miles from the airport) to see  if I might stop by to while away the time. But of course she answered. About 40 min after I arrived, I checked to see if Linda’s flight status had been updated. On Time arrival! What???! Apparently the flight met up with a tail wind and therefore not only made up time but also arrived ahead of schedule! When I arrived at baggage claim, there was Linda!

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    Friday, we lounged, er uh, enjoyed an extended Morning Solitude and Quiet Time. She was getting adjusted to the time change, the all-day before travel. I, well, I never turn down a chance to extend MSQT. Eventually, we got dressed and made a Whole Foods quick run, stopping on the way home at an Ethiopian restaurant for takeout dinner. Linda’s a big fan of Ethiopian cuisine (and  actually prepares it  tho’ she’s not Ethiopian). I hadn’t had Ethiopian cuisine in easily 15 years, so for me, the meal was truly a taste it again for the first time experience…and a yummy one, I might add!

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    Saturday dawned early enough – a bit on the cool and dreary side – rain expected but we were ready with rain ponchos and boots, just in case. The March route was changed by the Park Service – we were not allowed to march on the Mall nor by the White House. There were many law enforcement personnel – both federal and city – and barricades: police cars; tanks; trucks; dogs; police on horses, etc.  We marched and chanted and they watched, minding not when marchers stopped to take a photo with mounted law enforcement officers in the frame. At least 100,000 marchers was the official estimate. On the way home, we stopped at the grocery store for pizza fixins… and champagne and Talenti gelato.

    Sunday was pamper our feet day (I’d made mani/pedi appointments for us at Elizabeth Arden’s Red Door Salon); that took about 4 hours for us both. After, we went to Panera for soup and a sandwich and then to visit Dolly, Chris and Elias. Home, we joined Norman in watching the Super Bowl playoffs,  finished Fri/Sat leftovers and we knitted.

    Monday, thus far  the coldest day of the year (would you believe 3 – 13 degrees?) dawned too soon. Linda had an early afternoon flight home to the west coast.  Unfortunately, her layover flight was delayed for 4 hours plus and she didn’t get home til 1 AM-ish PST!

    Home, I watched TCM’s showing of A Patch of Blue with Sidney Poitier and then started making a quilt. I sewed until Nightly News came on. We watched more TV and called it a night about 11 pm.

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    Slowly today I am resuming normal life… doing laundry and a few other household chores… making a few more quilt blocks … savoring weekend memories … missing my friend.

     

    unraveled wednesday | 12.19.18 …

     

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    I woke up this morning filled with energy:

    • zip zap –  strip the bed linens …
    • gather and sort laundry …
    • prep chicken tenders  for baking …
    • fix tea for MSQT

    Whew! That was a lot and all before 7:00 am. Despite frost on the rooftops, the sky is bright blue and sunshine pretty much all day. Later today, Norman has a medical appointment; perhaps that’s why I was so gung-ho earlier.

    My Christmas knitting project proceeds; I think I’m about/near the halfway point. I am learning intarsia (which is probably why I stopped knitting this many, many moons ago). I don’t expect to finish this by Christmas – why rush? Perhaps the first week or so in 2019? When is just a word; the goal is to finish. Stay tuned.

    I mentioned yesterday that I’m still reading (via ears) Becoming. Next in my queue: The Library Book.  On New year’s Day, I’m hosting our bi-monthly (give or take a day/week) Recent Reads gathering; it also happens to be friend MT’s birthday. She requested that we all read the same book – we normally don’t – and we agreed. The book has received rave reviews! Have you read?

    I’m 99% sure I will be listening to the book since I have Audible credits. There’s not a copy to be borrowed from either of the two library systems I use.. The hold queue is long! I’m debating about reading the Kindle version and syncing it with the Audible version… Any thoughts? Whatever, I guess I’d best get a move on if I intend to join in the discussion.

    Both the washer and dryer have signaled cycles have ended; probably a cue for me to end this post and move on with the next item on my agenda. Joining Kat and friends here.

    Cheers~

    sometimes mondays | 12.10.2018 …

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    7:40 am  30° F

    • microwave running ~ boiling water for a second cuppa tea …
    • thinking maybe I will ask Santa to bring me an electric tea kettle – hmmm …
    • sweater blanket around my shoulders to keep me warm – it’s kinda cold this morning …
    • blue sky dotted with white clouds, some tinged with pink, here n there …
    • I stop to breathe for 5 minutes and …
    • hear the distant sound of a train’s whistle.

    My tea’s steeped and soon I will end MSQT to fix a salad.  Today is my quilt group’s annual holiday luncheon. The salad is simple, tasty and colorfully Christmasy . Here’s the recipe:

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    I diced some of the red pepper and used the slices as garnishment.

    Hope you’ve had a quiet start to your Monday too. Have a grand day!

    Cheers~

    simply a moment: I remembered…

     

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    9:03 am – The sun is bright and warm this morning, in direct contrast to yesterday’s pre-winter preview and surprise! What a difference a day makes! Sunny today and not a trace of snow or ice – except on the back deck.

    I stood at the window, in front of the radiator, feeling the warmth rising up from it as well as that from the sunlight streaming in…and I remembered

    I remembered the many, many times over the 32 and counting years I’ve lived in this house – from the beginning to now. When I first moved in, the walls were chartreuse -ooooh, not! And the carpet: orange. Yuck! Quick, paint the walls beige …at least that toned the carpet down a bit. Needless to say, the carpet’s life was short-lived…

    I remembered that my mom would sit in the chair – not the one pictured – ’cause it’ was warmer in the winter… and in the same chair, I sat, very early in the morning: reading and writing. It was in that spot that morning solitude and quiet time (MSQT) began for me, twenty plus years ago.

    I remembered the ice box: one of my first purchases when I moved to MD/DC in 1974. I don’t know why but there was something about it that I just liked …

    I remembered the little angel sitting on top of the icebox; my mom bought it for me for my 27th (I think) birthday…

    I remembered the several years it took me to stitch the wall hanging, finished about 5 years ago. I leave it up year round despite the Christmas holiday/winter theme …

    I remembered the ceramic elephant, sitting next to the chair, from Vietnam right before the war ended…

    I remembered the small pillow on the chair – my first foray into needlepoint…

    I remembered the Japanese Maple, planted the second or third year I moved here…

    I remembered all the thirty-two Christmases in this house, starting with Dolly who spent her first one, age 9 months, and then Christian and then Kayla and then…

    I thought:

    Oh what fun Christmas will be with two little boys! Let the fun begin!

    I am so grateful for these memories…and the ones yet to be made.

    on gratitude and writing…

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    This morning, during MSQT – morning solitude and quiet time – I thought a lot about gratitude and writing. In a way, they are synonymous to me. I can’t seem to think about /express one without the other.

    MSQT begins when I go downstairs and set up my space/place at the table: I pull my Raskog book cart close to the table, take the lamp off  and set it on the table. Next, set placemats out: one is for my journal, the other, my tea  mug and water glass; both sit on a small tray. Finally, I arrange other paraphernalia: pens; my journal; my iPad and iPhone, plugging which ever one might need a charge into the outlet on the lamp; and the book/s I’m currently reading. I then boil water (in the microwave) for tea and fix myself a glass of ice-cold water. When the water is boiled, I take the mug to the table, sit, plop in my tea bag and breathe for 4-5 minutes. Once that’s done, I am ready to write.

    My daily journal entry always begins with the date, time, a “brief weather report” in the form of a graphic: a cloud or sun or snowflake. Next I write a bit about the day before, today’s upcoming agenda, my thoughts, feelings, plans, ideas, surroundings, memories, and gratitudes.

    I find that I enjoy the physical act of writing, of making letters, forming sentences, expressing thoughts, ideas, feelings, describing my surroundings, anticipating and/or relishing my experiences. I also read – generally a book that helps me explore a current or long-time interest, poetry, or an essay. Most often, books by writers on the practice of writing. Hard work.

    I write, not because I want to publish – anything beyond a blog post – but because it fills my soul …and for that, I am grateful.

    What fills your soul?

    Cheers~