Saturday, January 28, 2017


I decided to make some pizza for supper tonight.
I used the bread maker to make the crust, which came out great.
I used a recipe from this book:
 I made some minor changes to the recipe. It calls for plain, unbleached bread flour (bread flour is called 'strong flour' here). It is always recommended that bread/strong flour be used for yeast bread in the bread machine because of the higher protein content, but this used to be a challenge for me. I never lived in a place where I could get whole grain bread flour, but I prefer to use whole grains in my cooking and baking. Such a thing may exist somewhere in the US--I am sure it must--but I never saw it in the grocery stores I was in. I learned to improv with regular whole grain flour, adding milk, mashed potatoes, potato water, or cheese, all of which seemed to help the dough rise better. It's different here though--strong wholemeal flour is readily available, even up here in the wee shops we have in town. In one of them, strong wholemeal flour is available, but strong white flour is not. So I got myself a bag of strong wholemeal flour and I use that, including for the pizza crust. The recipe called for 4 cups of strong white flour. I used 3 cups strong wholemeal flour and a cup of plain flour. I also added a bit of garlic, parsley, and oregano to the ingredients.

I made the larger batch so I'd have extra. I used half and wrapped the rest, sticking it in the fridge. Tomorrow I will use it to make calzones, I think.

Here's hoping that it's a fine weekend in your neck of the woods!

Friday, January 27, 2017

Not Quite Normal, But Getting There

Oh the wonders of sleep! After my marathon of sleep Wednesday night into yesterday afternoon, I felt better, if still a bit drained. I slept again last night, but did wake up at 4 this morning--not surprising given all the sleep I'd had in the previous 24 hours. I got up and did a little bit of knitting, which was great. I'd not been able to do much of that at all for over a week and I'd missed it. I have a small mindless project that I brought with me to Sligo and started in the hotel. I will finish that and then get back to a different project. That will require attention and counting, so I was not touching that these last couple of weeks! I knew that, given my lack of sleep and general feeling of tiredness, that I was likely to make a mistake that would result in having to rip back, so I just decided to leave it alone. Still, it was wonderful to have yarn in my hands again. 😂

The other thing I was not able to do these past couple of weeks was read. It was driving me nuts to have stacks of books all around the place and not be able to pick one up and get lost in it. Two more books came in at the library on Wednesday, some were due next Wednesday, and there I was, sitting there in my lumpish non-functional state.

This morning I renewed the books that could be renewed. I'd started Origins of Totalitarianism last week, but had to set it aside. It could not be renewed because someone else has a hold on it. That is the first priority--get it read so I can take it back next week when it is due. I have extra time for the rest of them, so as long as I can keep getting some rest, I should be done with them in plenty of time.

My eye is watering again today, but that is because I went out in the wind. I took a 45 minute power nap this morning before heading out to the library, where I helped someone begin a crocheted hat. She asked me about payment. I did not understand at first. She said every other time she goes to something like that, there is a charge--usually a fiver. I said there was no charge--it is a library thing. She asked if I was sure, what with the tea and biscuits and the lessons. I told her not to worry about it.

As we were chatting, she and another woman were commenting about the fact that I seemed like I had lived an exciting life. I said I wasn't sure about exciting, but it has been an interesting life and for a curious person like myself, that's about as good as it gets. 😃

After the library, we went to the shop. By the time we got home, my eye was dripping. As we neared the building, a guy came out of a nearby house and struck up a conversation, wondering where we are from and commenting on us living here now He introduced himself to us and we to him. He then proceeded to tell a story about his granny's sherry that he hid in a hole in the ground to age. He and his buddy dug it up one day and drank it. Granny wondered why he could not stand up. He laughed and laughed. Then he talked about lobster in Maine and salmon in Alaska.

Spent a couple of hours reading this afternoon and will read and knit more after supper. There should be a New York Times Book Review podcast to download--the new episode comes out on Friday. Those are nice to listen to while I am stitching.

Hope Friday is a good one in your neck of the woods. Hard to believe January is almost over already.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Recycled Gum and Sleep

These things are posted all over Sligo--at least on the routes we know best!
I have never used one, but I can see that they'd be useful. Gum here does not come in wrapped sticks, but in little rectangles that are unwrapped and coated with something. They remind me of Chiclets. So there is no foil wrapper to save to wrap the gum in when disposing of it. Gum is a big litter problem all over, but Sligo is the only place where I have seen these. Too bad someone decided it could double as an ashtray 😒

I'd been really, really missing sleep lately and last night, I hit the wall. We were planning to go to the library to hear some music--a guy was going to play some of his original music with the obligatory tea and biscuits afterwards. I was sitting on the bed in my brain fog and when I checked the time, it had already started. Probably just as well. I drank a couple of cups of coffee, crawled under the covers at 9 last night, fell asleep, and, with the exception of a few 10 minute intervals of wakefulness to get water or food today, kept right on sleeping until 3 this afternoon. I still feel a little weird, but I am hoping that this is a sign that I am on my way back to normal. I have not been able to do much of anything. I did a little knitting in the hotel the other night, but that's been the extent of any yarny things for many days. I have not been able to read--and the library books are piling up. Two more came in yesterday. I look longingly at the towering pile on my bedside locker and hope that I will be able to start on it soon.

It feels like it could be another early night tonight. Or maybe I will do what I usually do and get a second wind at around midnight!

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Sligo: Eye Town

Bill and I were joking yesterday, as we walked to the bus station, about how Sligo is associated in our minds with eye tests. We know the loop from bus station to hotel to hospital quite well now, along with a few streets that branch off of our main route, but that's it. We talked about how we might go sometime and veer off in new directions, although we would stay at the same hotel, which we love.

On Monday we arrived, stopped at a grocery store to pick up some food, and headed straight for the hotel.

We were both really tired--I was operating on 2 hours of sleep--and did not want to go out again once we checked in. By 3:30 I was under the duvet in my nightgown and robe.

We had to get up early yesterday morning. I made coffee in the room and we had some instant porridge I'd found at the store. I boiled the water in the kettle. I was bummed to have to leave without having one of the hotel's wonderful breakfasts, but I did explain that we had to get to the hospital and asked if I could grab some yogurt and some of their excellent homemade granola to take with me and eat at the hospital. I'd cleaned out one of the porridge cups and I used that. A few hours later, sitting in the waiting room, it was the perfect thing.

The cataract surgery was uneventful and Bill left sporting a black arrow pointing to his left eye, and a plastic eye patch with holes. Before we left, we sat with the nurse, who could not have been more helpful! She called the local optician to set up his follow-up appointment 4 weeks from now. She went through the eye drop and other info. She gave us a voucher for a free coffee or tea in the cafe. And then we were done. We had just enough time to get to the bus station and catch the earlier bus to Letterkenny, which in turn meant that we could catch the earlier bus from there home. That meant we got home 2+ hours earlier than we would have if we had not caught that bus, but also that the chemist was still open when we arrived. We called in there, a few steps from where the bus left us off, got his prescription for the drops, and turned the corner for home.

We did not have time to use our voucher, but we were told that he will be back there for a routine look at the eye in 6 months, so we will use it then--LOL. And we think this time we might stay for an extra night or two and see a bit more of Sligo than the loop between hospital, hotel, and bus station!

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Not How I Thought I'd Be Spending My Time

I had some ideas for things I wanted to do after the holidays. You know what they say though--life is what happens when you're busy making other plans. I have gotten to the point where I am a bit frustrated, because not only have I not been doing what I thought I would, but I have not been doing much of anything.

Back in November, we had a lovely cold (for here) spell. Then it got very warm for the time of year--into the 60s. My allergies blossomed, with the headache, drippy head, pressure, brain fog, and sometimes coughing that comes along with it. I started to slow down. I stopped sleeping as well as I usually do in winter. I slowed down some more. It was the festive season, and I usually make it a point to spend that time quietly anyway, so I figured that would help me get back to normal faster. Then I started getting shooting pains in my face around my right eye. Then it went numb/tingly and my eye was watering all the time with the shooting pain happening occasionally as a bonus. Some of my teeth felt weird--like novocaine wearing off.  I was sleeping even less. I started having days where I could not really do very much of anything. Some days the pressure would ease and I would hope that the face thing would go and I would get back to normal, but then it would just come back.

This week has been the worst as far as sleeping goes. I got one hour of sleep one night and 3 another night. I feel exhausted, go to bed, and am awake for hours. Even when I do fall asleep, I am up every hour or hour and a half. Now the right side of my face is drooping. I could feel my lip was funny the other day while I was talking to Bill and he asked me what was wrong with it because it was drooping. I looked at myself in the mirror and smiled and sure enough it was a funny, half-droopy smile. My smile has always been slightly crooked, but now it is really crooked! It goes up on the left side and that side of my nose crinkles, but not the right side. Turns out it's a case of Bell's palsy, which I had never heard of, but hey, live and learn, right? It goes away by itself in a month or two and I am at around 5 or 6 weeks now. I am starting to be able to feel more of my face, with the numbness pretty much confined to the bridge of my nose on the right side. My teeth are just about back to feeling normal. My eye is not watering as much. The sinus pressure and congestion has eased up and I only cough once in a while. I am not sure whether the droop is temporary or not--I can try to use the muscles, apparently, in an effort to get things back to normal, so I am occasionally scrunching up the right side of my face--LOL

What I was really happy about was the fact that last night I could knit a little. Yay! I had not been able to knit or to read much and this week I didn't at all. I am hoping that soon I will be able to do some of the things I'd planned. In the meantime, I am trying to take today to rest as much as I can. We are off to Sligo tomorrow for Bill's cataract surgery on Tuesday morning and I would prefer to be functional, even with my droopy face.

As part of my attempt to have a peaceful, calm, pleasant day, I added some water and orange peel to the oil burner Bill got me for my birthday last month. It was made at Moville Pottery.
 It came with this stuff that looks like coloured salt or something. The smell is not one that causes me discomfort, like most chemical things do, but it just smells like soap to me, so I do my own thing instead. Sometimes I do the orange peel, sometimes I add cinnamon, ginger, and cloves to the water, sometimes I add a strong-smelling tea bag, sometimes a sprig of rosemary, and sometimes I put in a drop or two of almond extract. Today it's orange-quite nice!

In the bedroom, I have a jar of winter pot pourri a friend sent.
It is wonderful! It's not overpowering, but just gives off a lovely subtle scent. I am enjoying it as I type.

I've just had a nice cup of tea and am about to do some knitting. I attempted a nap and while I did not quite get to sleep, I was able to spend some time in that place sort of in between sleeping and wakefulness, so that was a sort of rest. I still have to toss some stuff in my backpack and I have no idea what books and yarny things I will bring. Usually I think way too much about those things, but I did not have the energy this time, so I will decide on the fly!  Send good thoughts for a decent night of sleep, please!

Friday, January 20, 2017

Lazy Sock Repair

For various reasons, today seemed like it was a good day to engage in repetitive stabbing, so I gathered up some socks that needed attention. They all had holes or thin spots on the bottom of the heel--always where my socks wear out. To fix them, I decided on the lazy way--I needle felted them.

This is the inside of one of them partway through the stabbing event:
And this is what the outside looked like when I was done.

This pair was crocheted with a knitted afterthought heel using small scrap balls randomly. The patch will felt further as these are worn and laundered. I stick a small sponge inside the sock to do the felting. I have repaired other socks this way in the past and it works quite well, extending the life of my socks. I would not want to have to discard them before their time 😊

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Bread Maker Book

Last week, after I was so excited to find a bread maker at the charity shop for 5 euro, I clicked on over to the library web page and did a search for a bread machine book. I narrowed the search to Donegal libraries and one came up--The Ultimate Bread Machine Cookbook. I placed a request. Late Friday afternoon, I got an email f4rom Gerard saying it had come in, so I dashed around the corner to pick it up. As I was looking through it that evening, I was commenting to Bill that there was a lot of great information in the book--an extensive reference section and a lot of good recipes and ideas. He did a search and found a cheap copy (5ish euro, including shipping) at an ebay bookseller that we have bought from before--quite the contrast from the seller who priced their copy at 122!  I told him to go ahead and get it. I planned to keep the library copy until my copy arrived. I can return the book to the library tomorrow because mine arrived this morning. Yay!

One tip that I read in here and do not remember seeing before is to add a can of chickpeas to the other ingredients. This adds a nutty flavour and makes a bread with good texture. I have done the same with potatoes in the past, so I will try it with the chickpeas sometime.When I do, I'll let you know how it goes.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Around Town and a Chat

I have been dragging lately and sleep is hard to come by. This is not for any particular reason--I get tired, go to bed, and then feel wide awake. Last night I was tossing and turning so went into another room and crawled into the bed there so Bill could get some sleep. I tossed and turned in there until quarter to 5 when I finally fell asleep--until quarter to 6. That was disappointing. By 6:30 it seemed like I might as well just get up, so I did. Once Bill got up a couple of hours later, I climbed back into bed, downed a cup of coffee and immediately fell asleep for a couple of hours.

I made myself get up and get dressed so we could go the the shop and make a stop at veg man's stall. I was sad to see that spring is apparently just around the corner!
 This is what the planters looked like at the end of November:

 We chose our fruit and veg and went to pay. Veg man was talking to someone who was with him and he mentioned something about a stroke. I hesitated, wondering if it would be culturally appropriate to join the conversation, but decided I might as well. We all started chatting. I mentioned that Bill had had a stroke. Veg man started asking questions and Bill was answering him, telling about his experience. Turns out that veg man is worried about his mum, who had a stroke over the festive season. At one point, he asked something and then stopped, looked at me and said, 'I hope you don't mind me asking all these questions...for my mum.' We assured him that we did not mind at all. He was especially concerned because his mum, who is in her late 70s, but quite fit, is still so tired. Bill was able to talk about his experience and how exhausted he was by just the smallest bit of activity. Turns out that both veg man's mum and Bill had strokes as a result of irregular heartbeats, so Bill was able to reassure him by talking about his own experience. Veg man said, 'I think sometimes people show up and you have conversations at just the right moment.' Bill and I walked away feeling as though he felt better and less worried about his mum and what is happening right now. I hope she is OK and I was glad that we went there at just that moment--a little later than we usually go.

We came home, put away the food we'd bought and had a spot of lunch. Then we went out again to do another errand, deciding to take a slightly longer route than usual. On the way we passed a couple of houses that had pebbles and sea glass stuck into the cement 'siding.' I've walked by those houses several times before and do not remember noticing.

Bet it's pretty if the sun ever hits! I was reminded of a house in Ballinrobe with shells all lined up in columns on the front of the house.

I am hoping for an early night that involves a lot of heavy sleeping!

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, January 16, 2017

Mitred Squares Blanket

Last night I wove in the ends on my ruffly border, thus finishing my mitred squares blanket.
The 35 squares are knitted. The border is crocheted. Obviously, I could have used fewer stitches on the border, but when it started to ruffle, I thought about whether I wanted to rip it back and start the border again or keep going and have a ruffly edge. As you can see, I decided on the latter. Since this is for me I didn't worry about it and I like the way it contrasts with the straight lines of the squares. It is also nice because some of the squares are stretchy and this border, because it is not too tight, allows for a nice drape. If it had been for someone else, I would have ripped it back, unless they expressed a wish for the ruffle.😊 I also would have done it over if I had needed a wider border, since with fewer stitches in each round, I would have been able to do more rounds with the yarn I had. The length and width were fine though.

The yarn I used was all scraps and odd balls, given to me by a few friends and Bill. The exception was the dark blue and the turquoise, which I got at a local charity shop and had left from a pair of slippers I made as a Christmas gift. There were different weights of yarn, but I didn't worry about that. If a yarn was too thin, I held it double, but otherwise I just knit away on size 6 mm needles. I used the Russian join method, except for the boucle yarns, where it would not really work. This allowed me to just knit along, not caring about the colour changes.

I started during the first week of November. It was a good mindless project to work on and I could pick it up and put it down without worrying about where I was--a very relaxing project and a good way to use up scrappy bits!

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Excitement at the Charity Shop

Today I realised that the beginning of January is a great time to call in at the charity shops. People are clearing out cupboards and getting organised, on fire with the determination to make good on those resolutions. I had never thought of this before, but now I know.

It's Tuesday, so we went off to see veg man, deciding to cross the street at the end of the lane and see what was happening at the charity shop there. They had signs all over for the euro sale--coats and dresses are 2 euro, kids clothes 3 for a euro, and a euro or less for other clothes and stuff. As soon as we walked in, I saw a forest green coat hanging there and thought that it looked like wool. I rummaged around, found the tag, and sure enough, it was 100% wool. I considered getting it to cut up for the fabric, but decided not to--it felt like I should leave it there. Cold weather is coming and it's a nice coat. Someone who might not have a lot of cash could find it, be very happy with it, and really use it to keep warm, which would be better than me cutting it apart. I try to get stuff for making things that is either really worn, has holes, is missing buttons, or that they are really trying to get rid of because it's been there a while.

Then we headed into the books/housewares room. 'Oh my god!' I said, and made a beeline for the back wall. Sitting there was a bread machine and a box with a grater/slicer thing like one my grandmother gave me years ago. First stop was the bread machine. All of the pieces were there, but as is usually the case, there was no price. I took it to the lady at the desk and asked her how much it was. She hesitatingly asked if 5 euro would be acceptable. 'It would be very acceptable,' I replied, and asked if I could set it down there.
Then I went back and looked at the grater thing. All the pieces were there. It is plastic and the one I had was all metal, but I took it anyway. I loved the one I had and I used it so much that one of the little metal pieces that held the blades in broke. Through the years, I have often wished I still had it. Now I have another one--yay!
We also found 4 books--all novels that will be read and placed in the wee free library afterwards.

As we were paying (7 euro for the lot), I was telling the woman that only last week we were talking about how we wished we still had our bread machine. She laughed and said, 'Really? Well this one just came in. You know who brought it in? I did! I was cleaning out the cupboards and found it there. I used to use it all the time, but I haven't made bread in years, so I decided, "Right, time for it to go" and I brought it in. It makes great bread though, and I did test it before I brought it in, so it works just fine.' Woo hoo!!

We'd found a machine in one of the charity shops in Ballinrobe, but when we left there we decided to donate it back. Since we made that move by bus, we were limited as far as luggage space went and that seemed expendable because the tiny kitchen in Killybegs was extremely short on counter space and electrical outlets. I had no good place to use it there anyway, except the floor! But although the kitchen here is very small, it is very good to work in--plenty of counter space and outlets. It will be very convenient to use here.

I was wondering about yeast, though. I did not recall seeing it in the little grocery shops here, but I thought the Organic Farm Store might have it. They did! Same kind I got in Ballinrobe, I think. So now I am off to google the machine--there is no book with it. I am pretty sure it will make a 1 pound loaf*--the pan looks smallish, but that is good. We will not have to worry about the bread getting moldy. We were recalling the very first machine we had 20 years ago in Fairbanks. It made up to a 2 1/2 pound loaf!

Very glad we went in today--it was good timing.

Hope your day has some happy surprises in it too!

*After clicking around a little, it appears that it is a 1 1/2 pound loaf, based on the amount of water and flour the recipes in the online manual call for. It doesn't really matter, now that I have basic amounts!

Monday, January 9, 2017

Short Stories and Old Dogs: A Birthday Gift

A few weeks ago, a friend sent me an Amazon UK gift voucher for my birthday. I waited until after the 'festive season' was over and last week I set up an account and made some selections.This allowed me to think a bit about what I would choose, because, to be honest, at first I could not think of anything in particular. I did decide that I should choose something that I would want to keep, not read and donate, so I just left it there to percolate in my brain for a while.

One night I was crocheting and probably listening to a book podcast when I suddenly remembered hearing some guy named Philip something on podcasts a year (or more) ago talking about the 2-volume British short story collection he edited, which spans a few hundred years of writing. At the time, I looked it up at the library, but they did not have it. I could not remember his last name or the exact title, but a google search soon provided both. I looked them up at Amazon and there they were, so I knew where part of my gift voucher was going. I love short stories and I always have my eyes open for collections, so these volumes will go well with the others I have. So glad I remembered them!

Then I was chatting with Bill and we were talking about a story the same friend had sent a month or so ago, about a woman who did a photography project with older dogs and their people. Her husband convinced her to collect their stories as well, so she did and now that is a book. I added that to the list.

When I set up my account and went to place my order, everything was cheaper than it had been a couple of weeks previously. Nice! I love a book sale and I still have almost half of my voucher left 😊

I was expecting them tomorrow or the next day, but they arrived early! The postman rang the bell this morning. Nice way to start the week!
Hope your week is starting off well too!

Saturday, January 7, 2017

'Mexican' Lasagne and Stuff

Spent a little time in the kitchen today and now our meals are sorted for the next few days.

This morning after my coffee, apple, and breakfast sandwich of leftover pesto and cheese on toast, I decided to toast some oats. I mixed the toasted jumbo oats with coconut and almonds. Bananas are on sale at a local shop, so we have many of them. Breakfast tomorrow (for me) will be a bowl of the oat mixture with a banana sliced in, some walnuts sprinkled on top and a splash of milk. Bill always has his porridge cooked with milk and a chopped pear or apple and some walnuts.

For lunch I made a vegetable soup, using some of the bouillon I got the other day. As always, I made extra so we would have leftovers available.

Supper tonight was a kind of improv 'Mexican' lasagne, using stuff I had around.
Years ago I used to make a dish that was layers of refried beans, salsa, cheese, and corn tortillas. No corn tortillas here, so I used lasagne sheets left from the Christmas Eve lasagne.

Yesterday I soaked some dried kidney and cannelini beans. At 11 when off peak electricity started, I covered these soaked beans with boiling water in the crock of my slow cooker, set it to high and continued with my night. By the time I got back to them at 9:30 this morning, they were perfectly cooked--I cook them on the high setting here because this slow cooker does not seem to get as hot as those I used to have.

I drained them, mashed them with a potato masher, put them in containers and stuck them in the fridge. When I was ready to make supper, I sliced a large yellow onion and chopped two bell peppers. These I cooked in a puddle of olive oil until the onion was translucent. Then I added some granulated garlic, oregano, and some chili powder to the pan and mixed it in, letting everything cook for a few minutes more.

I layered canned chopped tomatoes in juice, the lasagne sheets, the beans, the spiced veggies, and cheddar cheese. On one layer I added some sliced red jalapenos from a jar. I also ran a little water around each can and poured that around the edges of the pan. I always make my lasagne with uncooked regular (not the no boil) noodles and it is good to make sure there is enough liquid for the noodles to absorb. In this case, I knew the beans would also absorb some more liquid, so I wanted to be sure there was enough in there. By the time it was done cooking, all the liquid was absorbed.

Over the last layer of lasagne sheets, I spread more beans and more tomatoes. I covered with foil and baked at 200C for almost forever (my ovens here have all been tiny and they take a long time for something like this--I do not cook large things in it very often!). After 45 or 50 minutes, I took it out and checked it by sticking a knife in at various places. Needed a bit more time, so I left the foil off, put the pan back in for another 15 minutes and checked again. Almost done, so I added the top layer of cheese and put it back until the cheese was melted and bubbly. That was it--nice and hot, noodles cooked, and we both love it. Just as well, since we have plenty of leftovers. This is something I will make again in future, but like almost everything I make, it is likely to be a little bit different every time, depending on what I have around the place. Might be different beans, different cheese, the addition of corn and/or courgettes (zucchini), salsa, or some other thing.

I am always well pleased when I have my own ready meals in the fridge! Hope your fridge is stocked with stuff you love too 😋

Friday, January 6, 2017

Women's Christmas/ Nollaig na mBan

Today is Women's Christmas, or Nollaig na mBan in Ireland. This marks the 'official' end of the festive season. Traditionally, it was the day when the tree was taken down, the decorations put away, and the women got a day off from housework. We have not had a tree in years and our few decorations were taken down the day after Christmas, but I fully support the part about women getting a day off. I told Bill that this would be an excellent opportunity to go native, so it's a tradition, starting today. 😊

We kicked off our new tradition by walking to the end of the lane and having supper at The Cosy Cottage.
photo by Bill Burke
It was yummy. Afterwards we walked a few more steps over to Market Square to see the tree and the new year sign one more time--I expect they will be coming down soon.
photo by Bill Burke
As we were turning to head back home, I saw Gerard pulling out of his spot in front of the library--he'd just left the library after locking up for the week. He saw us, pulled over, rolled down his window and said I'd had a book come in. 'Do you want it?' he asked. I told him I'd be grand until next Wednesday and I would go to pick it up then, when the library is open. I said I was pretty sure I had enough reading material at home to fill the gap between now and then. He asked if I was sure. He would have turned around, parked his car, unlocked the library and all of that if I had said I wanted the book right then even though I am sure he was really ready to be done with work on a Friday evening. That is so nice! Love our wee library!

Earlier today we walked up to the tin and bottle (glass) recycling area and I noticed that there are buds on the trees--and flowers along the roadside!

 It is too soon for this kind of thing.

Further on down the road, there was this sad sight.
I wonder if it fell off a Christmas tree that was being discarded today. Seems like a sad but apt commentary on the day that's in it.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Getting Back to Normal

So another year has begun.
Much just shuts down here between Christmas and the new year, so it seems like the whole town is trying to get back into the swing of normal life. Opening hours of businesses and the library go back to what they were, deliveries get made more regularly, and people go about their lives after a very quiet couple of weeks.

We went out to do some errands today, stopping first at the library to leave in a pile of books. On our way down the lane we saw that the charity shop was open, so we called in there. I had to laugh at these two books side by side on a shelf.
We left those there for someone else, but we both found others that made their way home with us. Bill got several and I picked up these.
I will probably keep the Irish short story one and the other two can go into the wee free library when I am done with them.

After that we headed down Main St to the shop.
After picking up a few grocery items there, we went to the Organic Farm Store. Bill wanted some more Darjeeling tea and we wanted to see if they had any, since the other local shops do not. I wanted to pick up another container of this bouillon stuff I discovered. A friend had recommended it to me so I tried the 'less salt' version and loved it. A little bit of it in certain things really adds a nice flavour and it is great to make broth for quick soups.

They had Bill's tea and they had one more little container (150g) of the lower salt bouillon, which I picked up before looking around to see what else was there. As I was looking at the herbs, I turned around and saw a big canister (1 kg) of the stuff. It was a much better value than the small container, so I got it.
I was irrationally pleased about finding this. It is so handy when I want a quick soup for lunch or want to turn some cooked veggies and grains into soup for breakfast and now I will not run out anytime soon. Yay!

Got some couscous and a bottle of environmentally friendly laundry detergent to go with our tea and bouillon and we headed back home.

I will probably knit tonight. Since I finished the poncho, I have been knitting away on my mitred square blanket and it is nearing the finish line. I have started the last row of 5 squares. Then there will be ends to weave in and a sinple border to crochet.

It was a pleasant day as I attempted to ease myself out of holiday hibernation mode.

Hope your day is pleasant too!