Saturday, January 13, 2018

Of Books and Random Musings...

  Yesterday was a particularly rainy and dreary day, and it brought back memories of the times when I would stay inside and play with my doll or do a hundred piece puzzle while my Mum worked on crafts or played a game with us. Rainy days are cozy days, and even though I do prefer sunny and warm days, winter and early spring holds a special part in my heart and I love it oddly enough, rain, mud, cold and all.
   Now that I'm just a smidgen older, I still like doing puzzles (especially Ravensburger), but nothing beats reading books. With that in mind, yesterday Mum, Diane, and I all went to the library. I love going to the library so much that it's hard not to squeal with delight as I peruse the book-ladened shelves.
  I've always been a slowpoke by nature, and even more so when I'm doing something, or am somewhere that I really like, because of that, I could easily spend several hours in the library and it's sort of a test of my own strength to leave the library within a reasonable amount of time.
  I've never understood why libraries don't have shopping carts, it would be so much easier to transport my books while browsing if I had a cart to put my chosen ones in. Sadly I don't suspect that libraries shall take up my suggestion any time soon.
   If you're wondering when I'm about to get to the point, I'm afraid you shall be disappointed, for the point of this whole post to randomly babble, which I'm very good at.
   Some people (not me, of course) think that libraries are boring, which I can't kind comprehend, even though I try to, and I suppose the reason why I think libraries are interesting is because of all the different characters you can meet there (and I'm not just talking about book characters). For example, last year, which is a statement I'm still trying to get used to when referring to 2017, my Mum, Diane, and I watched as two Mennonite girls walked into the library, that's not exciting, I know, and we thought nothing of it either. But when I was on my way out a few minutes later I walked past the girls and heard them excitedly chatting as they hunched over a computer, "He's cute" the one girl gushed. Now, obviously I was intrigued, who did these two girls think was cute. Naturally I did the only thing a girl could do, I circled around the shelves again and walked past them, moderately close, mind you, and I took a quick peek at the computer screen. If I would have been prone to dramatics (*cough*) I would have slapped my hand on my forehead and swooned. Not because the dear fellow was dashing, but because he was rather, well, un-dashing, and the shock over their preference would have been too great for me and caused me to faint. The chap in question was a middle-aged man with sort of matted, or dare I say lumpy, hair, a rather large nose, though I should call it aristocratic, and he was smiling in that sort of self-assured business man way, you know the pose, the classic,"prop-the-chin-on-the-hand-smolder." I left the library with a shudder, but also amused.
   On that cheerful note, I will leave and go read a book. Enjoy your weekend everyone!

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

The SImple Woman's Daybook

 Today..... Wednesday, January 10,  2018

Looking out my window..... I see the field across the road covered with a thin layer of snow, and a bunch of  various stubborn plants peeking up through the cold weather, determined to stay seen.

I am thinking.....  That gravy on waffles isn't as odd as it sounds.

I am thankful.....  For pens and for people.

One of my favorite things..... Is knowing the answers to all the driving-related questions my brother asks me randomly.

I am wearing.....  A floral patterned skirt and a pale purple t-shirt.

I am creating.....  Aside from the obvious, I'm creating a cook book of healthy recipes, I love inventing recipes, especially challenging ones. My sister is my taste-tester and because of that she has grown to be suspicious of anything that looks too good to be true, like the time I made a gluten-free and sugar free cheesecake with strawberry sauce, she has still not forgotten the taste.

I am reading..... Well, as of today I haven't read anything, but yesterday I read "Kidnapped" by Robert Louis Stevenson, and "The Prince and the Pauper" by Mark Twain. Both were surprisingly good books.

I am hoping.....  That I will survive the winter without any sicknesses. I've made it this far, only a a few months to go yet.

I am learning.....  How to paper quill. It's a very fascinating process and I'm enjoying it immensely.

In the kitchen.....  Is our fridge and our oven, plus a sink and a table. The whole room is perfectly adapted to cooking and baking and eating, the kitchen is a wondrous invention.

Picture thought.....  Sean and I had a great time yesterday experimenting with his fizz and bubbles science kit. I'm almost certain his favorite part was when the mixtures bubbled over like volcanoes.

Friday, January 5, 2018


Reading... Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame. I think that it's refreshing to read a good children's book once in a while. This is the first time I have ever read it, and I know that my eight year old self would have loved all of the animals.

Writing... I've not been writing much lately besides my Diary and my journals. I really should work on all of the hundreds of story ideas I have.

Listening... To "Who Says?" by Joshua Micah. I just very recently discovered this singer and I really like his songs for the most part, they are definitely a little different but I like that they as Christian songs would appeal to those who are more into the contemporary and modern kinds of music.

Thinking... That I really should do my Algebra. It's best to get it over quickly, the pain isn't that intense then. Similar to ripping off a band-aid.

Smelling... Even though it's several rooms away, I smell the caramel pecan candle that's burning merrily. It's such a warm and delicious smell.

Wishing... That the days wouldn't fly by so quickly.

Hoping... That I will have an easy lesson of Algebra.

Wearing... A black and white striped, soft t-shirt, and a dusty blue, ankle-length skirt.

Loving... The month of January. I love how winter naturally makes room for more crafting and baking time. I have been busy with all of my journals and inventing new recipes.

Wanting... My driver's license. I do not appreciate all of the studying. I cannot wait until I can look back on the day that I took my test, because right now I'm a nervous wreck and I know that wrecks aren't good, especially concerning driving.

Needing... A big, strong cup of tea.

Feeling...Cheerful for the most part, only a tiny bit depressed about the cloud of Algebra hanging over my head.

Monday, January 1, 2018

New Year's Goals

  The year of 2017 was one of the best years of my life, not necessarily because of any one event, but because of the hundreds of small but beautiful moments I got to live through. And now that I do look back I see that I had many adventures, so many in fact that even Bilbo would be satisfied.
  I joined a speech class, which was one of the best and worst ideas I've ever had.  I'm not overly fond of attention and sadly, making a speech catches everyone's attention. I had many awkward, choking, forget what I'm supposed to say moments, and blushed a bunch, but in the end I was able to give a speech without so much as a tremble.
  I joined/started going to Sunday school, it's so much different than just attending the church service and I love it. I met a bunch of wonderful new people and am enjoying the lessons very much, probably because our teacher is so passionate about what she does.
   I sewed a bit, and wrote a bunch, and really fell in-love with junk journaling and keeping a smash book. That's certainly not all that happened this year, I met a ton of interesting and amazing people and stepped out of my comfort zone so many times, with that all in mind I think it's perfectly accurate to say that yes, 2017 has been my best year ever.
   Now let's see how many of my last year's goals and resolutions I completed.

  • learn to temper chocolate ... This one was a bunch of trial and error, but I finally learned how!
  • have a proper high tea party ... I had a wonderful tea party early in January and now my sister and I want to plan another one.
  • complete my crochet afghan ... Sadly I did not get my afghan finished. I did work on it, but so many other hobbies kept me busy.
  • start my own kitchen notebook (like Rachel Khoo) ... I did start my own kitchen notebook and I love it. I document all of my own recipes, the fails and the successes, I feel like the best part of the notebook is the fact that I can sketch a bunch into it.
  • blog much more frequently ... I think that we all know I failed this one.
  • have excessive berry-ings ... As soon as Summer rolled around Diane and I attacked the berry bushes. I think we got more scratches than berries, but this goal is complete.
  • read 52 books ... This was by far the easiest goal I had made, on December the 31st I had well over 70 books read. (I think it was eighty some.)
  • finish writing my book ... Sighs, this didn't happen, I now wish that I had spent more time writing, but at least my book is about half way done.
  • make a proper pâte à choux ... I love French foods and pastries and making pâte à choux was a must for me. I made several things with it actually, including Gougere and the classic éclairs.
  • make a proper pastry cream ... I think that considering what I had just said, this one is obvious.
  • broaden my french baking knowledge in general ... Well, my knowledge is broadened, not vastly, but a bit.
  • break my bad habits (wouldn't you just love to know what they are) ... Hmm, I do wish I had written down what my bad habits were because I have no idea now if I accomplished this or not.
  • have a real picnic ... A real picnic had been planned for Diane's birthday, but due to the frigid temperatures we had it inside.
  • become fluent in French ... Groans, not quite there yet, I think I'm like 62% fluent now. (Don't you love how precise that is?)
  And now onto this year's goals.

  • Blog at least twice a week
  • Finish a diary every two months
  • Make macarons
  • Make churros
  • Finish sewing my 50 states lap quilt
  • Do NaNoWriMo
  • Finish writing my book
  • Get my driver's license
  • Write a letter every week
  • Take a picture every day
  • Do a daily Bible study that isn't just reading my Bible
   It seems that I have much less on my goals list this year than I did last year, but at least I am being more specific this time around. And now I shall wish all of you a very wonderful year filled with many adventures (the good kind.)

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. What takes you out of your comfort zone?

  Definitely public speaking, I've had to do a bunch of it these past few weeks and it's horrible. It seems that I have every possible 'symptom' of public speaking fear too. Ah well, I think that people say it's these kinds of things that strengthens one's character.

2. Your least favorite spice?

 I heartily dislike curry and also anise and ginger. It's just something about those flavors...

3. What's a small change you'd like to make?

  I really want to start up crocheting again, I've been spending a bit of time making a poncho and it's reminded me why I love crocheting.

4. Do you enjoy visiting historic homes? If so, of the homes you've visited which one was your favorite? What historic home near you is open to visitors? Have you been? Southern Living rounded up eleven of the best in the southern part of the US and they're as follows-

Monticello (Jefferson's home in Virginia), Nathaniel Russel House (Charleston SC), Swan House (Atlanta), Ernest Hemingway's home (Key West), The Biltmore (Vanderbilt home in Asheville NC), Mount Vernon (Washington's home in Virgina), San Francisco Plantation (Garyville, Louisiana), Windsor Ruins (Port Gibson Mississippi), Longue Vue House and Gardens (New Orleans), Whitehall (Palm Beach FL), and Pebble Hill Plantation (Thomasville GA)

Have you been to any on the list? Of the homes listed which would you most like to visit?

  I would love to visit historic homes! Sadly, as of yet, I don't think that I have gone to see any. I have a friend who is a fellow lover of all things vintage and pretty, and she visits many historic houses and never spares the details when she tells me about them.

  I would really love to visit the Biltmore, Windsor Ruins, and Monticello.

5. What's something you think will be obsolete in ten years? Does that make you sad or glad?

  I think the man bun will be obsolete, at least I hope it will. And if it does, than yes, I am very glad. 

6.  Insert your own random thought here. 

  We have eighteen different holiday celebrations between now and the new year, and so this afternoon my Mum and I are going to sit down and plan out the menus for all of them, it's loads of fun to do stuff like that, and I have learned that it's best to plan menus when you're not completely starving.  

Monday, November 6, 2017

100 Questions ~ Part 4

76.Do you regularly burn incense? What?! No, I don't.

77. Ever been in love? Yes I have, with many things. But never a person. Though I do love my family very much.

78. Who would you like to see in Concert? Oh dear, Toby Mac, Amir, and Indila.

79. What was the last concert you saw? Does the harp concert at our library count?

80. Hot or cold tea? It's so sad that this is even a question. In my opinion, tea should always be hot, no one should ever have to ask which you like best because cold tea ought to be banned.

81. Tea or coffee? I love tea, I just savored a large cup full this morning. As for coffee, I loathe it, and I'm allergic to it (my tongue was swollen for a time after taking a sip.)

82. Sugar cookies or snicker doodles? I definitely prefer sugar cookies, and it's a tradition to make them on Christmas Eve Eve.

83. Can you swim well? Oh dear no, I just learned how to swim last year, and haven't swum(?) since. I love it though, and I could save my life by swimming, that is, if I had only five yards to cross to land.

84. Can you hold your breath without holding your nose? Yes I can.

85. Are you patient? I had an enormous amount of patience for tedious baking and crocheting tasks, as for people, I'm easily annoyed, so yes and no.

86. DJ or band at a wedding? Definitely a DJ, I've discovered that live music is most often lacking in everything.

87. Ever won a contest? Yes I did. When I was a little girl I entered a thanksgiving coloring contest, I won a twenty five dollar gift card, I remember spending it on clothes for my doll, and some games.

88. Have you ever had plastic surgery? No I haven't, and I never want to either.

89. Which are better: black or green olives? Both are horrible. I have never had a good experience with olives. I think they could be good if they are very well hidden in layers of some other food, but otherwise they're not very good at all.

90. Can you knit or crochet? I can crochet, I tried knitting three times already, to me it's just frustrating, they could have put some hooks on the end of those needles, it's so frustrating when my yarn slips off before I can catch it with my other needle.

91. Best room for a fireplace? Easy. The living room.

92. Do you want to get married? Yes I do someday. When I was younger (it seems I love that phrase) I had preferences like Anne (from Anne of Green Gables) as in I wanted to marry a tall, dashing, and roguish young man, and then his love for me would inspire him to leave behind his more daring ways. As I believe she had said, "I don't want to marry a wicked man, it would just be nice to know that he could be wicked." Anyways, I have decided I would much rather marry a loyal, caring, and God loving man.

93. If married, how long have you been married? Not a day.

94. Who was your high school crush? Oh dear, I do not have a crush on anyone, nor did I ever have a crush on a high-schooler. But in all fairness I have had more than one crush on a fictional character in books.

95. Do you cry and throw a fit until you get your way? No I don't, it sounds rather exciting, but if I tried it, my family would just laugh heartily and ignore me quite thoroughly. It would never work as a manipulation tool to get my own way. Not that I have any such tools, nor do I wish to have any.

96. Do you have kids? Do my books count?

97. Do you want kids? Yes I do.

98. What is your favorite color? Either teal, or lavender.

99. Do you miss anyone right now? Nope.

100. Who are you going to ask these questions next? No one. But everyone is free to do them if they wish to do so.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

100 Questions ~ Part 3

51. Last time you got a portrait taken by a photographer? I have never had my picture taken by a photographer. But my parents, brother, and cousin are all considered photographers to me, and they've all taken my picture.

52. Do you think musicals are cheesy? I love musicals. Some are completely boring, but I've watched a good few that are wonderful, such as The Sound of Music.

53. Is Christmas stressful? No! Christmas is absolutely the best most joyful and cheerful holiday season ever.

54. Ever eat a pierogi? I'm actually not sure. If I haven't, then it's going on my food bucket list.

55. Favorite type of fruit pie? This one is easy, nothing is better than peach pie. Yum.

56. Occupations you wanted to be when you were kid? I wanted to be many different things, I had wanted to be a teacher, a maid, a storekeeper, a writer, and a chef.

57. Do you believe in ghosts? Ghosts as in blurry spirit people? No I don't. But I do believe there are spirits. Just not the whole "come back to haunt" deal.

58. Ever had a Deja-vu feeling? Oh yes, all the time. Some times it's for the simplest things, like smelling the same thing, other times it's for odd things, like when I picked up a book, saw the date of 1856 and had an odd deja-vu feeling. By the way, I was delighted when I found out that deja-vu literally means "already seen."

59. Do you take a vitamin daily? Yes I do.

60. Do you wear slippers? No I don't, and it's because of a very good reason. They disgust me to no end, and I'm not exactly sure why.

61. Do you wear a bath robe? I don't have one, so no. But I don't think I'd ever buy one either.

62. What do you wear to bed? Oversized shirts and pajamas.

63. What was your first concert? I don't remember who the people were, but when I lived in Missouri I attended a fourth of July festival of sorts and they had a concert there.

64. Walmart, Target, or Kmart? I have never been to Kmart orTarget, so Walmart. But I really want to go to Target before long, I have a feeling I'd love it.

65. Nike or Adidas? I might get into trouble for saying this, but I think that both are overrated.

66. Cheetos or Fritos? Mm, cheetos.

67. Peanuts or sunflower seeds? It seems that I've always loved peanut butter, but earlier this year I made my own sunflower butter (a.k.a sunbutter) and it was awful. I prefer peanuts.

68. Ever hear of the group Tres Bien? Um, no.

69. Ever take dance lessons? Not official ones, but I have had  friends come and all of my siblings and I paired up with them and danced the afternoon away.

70. Is there a profession you picture your spouse doing? Ack! I'm married?!!! Do tell me, who is this mysterious fellow?

71. Can you curl your tongue? No I can't. It seems my lot in life does not include being able to do any of those little weird things, I can't snap my fingers, blow decent bubbles with gum,whistle, make the rumbley r sounds, etc.

72. Ever won a spelling bee? No I haven't, but I would love to. It would be such fun to say, "Hey, have you met my bee? It looks ordinary, but it can spell!"

73. Have you ever cried because you were happy? Yes, I basically cry at any emotion. Watching the "Return of the King" ending had me in tears, even though they were happy.

74. Own any record albums? No I don't.

75. Own a record player? Again ... no.