Monday, July 06, 2020

Week in Review - June 29 - July 5


I am definitely liking the new days/week-in-review timeframe. By going from Monday-Sunday, rather than Sunday-Saturday, everything is right there on my open planner and I don't have to flip back to the previous page. Duh. It took me long enough to figure it out.


I do have something other than white lilies in the garden. I am hoping next year, this beauty will rival girl sister lily and be tall with multiple blooms.

Lady K spent an extra couple of days with her dad this week. Primarily so she could take her Switch with her as she had been told by Texter she didn't need it for just a couple of days, but she could take it if she stayed longer.

I spent the night with her Tuesday night and we did a BinCity run before we drove her down to South Carolina - all the way to her dad's. 

Whether it is access to my laptop or me, she loves spending the night with me. She watches YouTube videos to help her with Minecraft or Animal Crossing. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

Note the plaid 'blanket' she has over her legs. That's my jacket she took months ago. She uses it constantly as a blanket in some form or fashion. 

The 4th of July was spent at work, shopping for others, who, based on their lists, were planning cookouts. I came home and Savvy, Mr. Arizona and I joined the neighbors out front, watching the fireworks being set off. Mr. Arizona had a couple of big fireworks he contributed to the neighborhood show. Everyone was basically maintaining their 'social distancing', but it was a fun time to get out and say hello to people.

Doesn't this cilantro bloom look like fireworks?

I haven't gotten into the Camp NaNo groove yet, but hope to change that in the coming week. However, I did get 7 letters answered and started up on Postcrossing again. Now I need to order more international stamps and decide if I am going to make postcards out of my digital art for future swaps.

But the BIG news, for me at least, is we set a record this past week in To-Go. We had 256 orders for the week which generated 21.5 thousand dollars in revenue for the store. Since I started on to-go about a year ago, this was something we have been working toward. Mr. To-Go and I have been laughing about the days when getting half a dozen orders was considered a good day. Now we are getting 30 plus a day. The goal is now 300 orders by Thanksgiving.

Otherwise this week...

  • Walked over 5000 steps 5 days
  • Finished 1 book
  • Wrote 4 posts
  • Started listening to Last Bus to Wisdom for my round robin book club

This coming week...

  • Start doing some stretching and exercising to improve flexibility
  • WRITE!
  • Have Lady K for a couple of days while I'm off and have the house to myself
  • Maintain daily garden duties

But for now it's a shower and breakfast and off to work!

Sunday, July 05, 2020

Positive Focus Sunday - Fireworks!

Saturday was interesting. 

And a bit sad.

The sad part is at work. We hit a new record for the number of to-go orders for the week. 250!

On one hand, it's fantastic! We have gone from being happy to get a handful of orders daily to having  about 30 or more a day. 

Unfortunately, that growth in due largely in fact to the current 'situation' in the world. If people were not so hesitant about coming into the grocery store, we would not be looking at 250 orders in a week.

Another downer is I ordered a set of masks for Lady K for when she goes back to school. 

While nothing official has come out to say masks will  be required, in all their plans for the new school year starting in about 6 weeks, there is definitely a strong hint masks will be required. 

So where's my positive focus?

Last night was the 4th of July. 

And as it got dark (and even several hours prior to dark) our neighborhood lit up with fireworks. 

Our neighborhood is small, just a couple of streets. And the only people driving on the street, live here. So everyone was out standing on the sidewalk and in the street. 

Social distancing was maintained for the most part, mainly by the adults. The kids, who have been playing together anyway, were running up and down the street. 

We stood around, or sat at the end of our driveways in family groups, calling to each other, as the 'menfolk' lit the fireworks. 

Important topics of conversation were around weighty topics such as the abundance of lightning bugs this summer and who would have the best fireworks.

Based on the orders I filled over the past few days, there will be a lot of cookouts this weekend. Hopefully everyone will be safe and healthy once the celebrating is over. But I think people needed this slice of normality after months of isolation.

As a friend mentioned, 'celebrate the little things'. 

Saturday, July 04, 2020

Seedy Saturday - Lilies of All Kinds

I have taken to calling it my 'lily tree'. At about 5 feet tall and with 14 buds on it, the opening of the flowers has been stunning. And I love the scent of the lilies as I walk through the garden, especially in the evening heat. It is a fantastic display. I hope the other lilies will eventually follow suit.

But the other kind of lily?

Water lily!

I was standing in line at Lowe's and started reading the package while waiting for my turn to move up and check out. It said I only needed a container 12-24 inches deep to grow it in. Which I had. 

Out of curiosity, I decided to give it a try and see what happens.

It didn't take but a couple of days for little leaves to emerge. Lots of little leaves. 

While my container is deep enough, it probably isn't wide enough. I may have to rethink my containers. I would really love to drop in a couple of little feeder fish to swim around in there. And, fingers crossed, I would really love it to flower. 

In the meantime, my tomatoes are flowering and setting lots of tomatoes. In fact, knock on wood, it looks like one of the best years for my gardening efforts. We have picked about a gallon of blueberries which we will turn into jam shortly. And I have picked a good dozen of tomatoes and a couple dozen cherry tomatoes. I think some spaghetti sauce is in my near future.

Monday, June 29, 2020

Week in Review - June 22 - 28

Yes, normally on Monday you would be seeing a new mandala. 

I've done that for quite a while now. In fact, I have stuck with pretty much the same schedule for more time than I realized. 

So it's time for a bit of a change to my blog and I am slowly, but surely, making those changes. 

Just like this HUGE lily, the changes won't all 'bloom' at the same time. Mondays will now be my week in review. Why?

Because my Hobonichi planner's weekly spread goes from Monday through Sunday and I can see the whole week without having to flip back to the week before to capture what I did on that Sunday. It also allows me to turn Sunday into a positive focus for the end of the week.

So, this past week...

Because I took 4 days off last week in order to do some of those 'yearly' medical tests all at one time, I used the time to do some Q2 review and set up my Q3 goals and plans. My kanban board also got a reset for the new quarter which starts on the 1st of July.

While most of my goals haven't changed, I realize my writing goals aren't being worked on like they should. So with Camp NaNo also starting on the 1st, hopefully I will concentrate more on writing. Besides, it's hot and humid outside!

I also used the time to drag all my poor, neglected houseplants outside and repot most of them. I did have to bid a farewell to a few. There are a couple I can't seem to grow in my room at all. And then there are some, like my Christmas cactus, which will be sitting outside in order to go through the change in temperature to 'inspire' it to bloom this winter.

Some room reorganizing also occurred. The biggest things were moving my bed against the wall which freed up about a foot of space down the length of the room. I also cleaned out the drawers in my nightstand and am now using the bottom drawer to store most of my tarot cards I don't use on a regular basis.

This means, in their space on my altar, I could slide my library books so they won't be in the middle of the floor. I also did a bit of closet 'reorganization'. I don't go into my closet very much since I have a uniform I wear to work and it hangs on the back of my bedroom door. Anything else is stored in my dresser draws. I now have what seems like a ton more floor space in my room.

My plants went from being on 3 shelves in front of the window to this setup...

I can't believe I didn't think of this arrangement originally!

Plus I added a sheer curtain I got at Goodwill for $3. My window is pretty well blocked by a huge cedar tree, but there was still the whole bare window thing I was having issues with when I took down the shelves which were staked 3 shelves high.

Anyway, otherwise this week...

  • Walked over 5,000 steps only 3 days
  • Finished 2 books
  • Decided I am going to order some postcards and notecards based on my digital art and should be ordering them in July

This coming week...

  • Start Camp NaNo and get things all set to begin with a bang
  • Pay bills on the 1st and throw money into savings
  • Lady K to her dad this weekend
  • I work To-Go all week! So excited!

But for now, more coffee and head to work!

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Positive Focus Sunday - Exploring

These days, with everyone having to stay at home, exploration seems to have been curtailed for most people.

But you don't have to leave your house to explore something new. (Well, for the most part I didn't leave the house.)

A tomato? That's exploring?

Yes and YES!

In my garden I have several 'surprise' tomatoes. Crosses which we don't really know what they will grow out to be.

This particular tomato plant is a cross between a Cherokee Chocolate (a brown tomato) and a plum tomato and Black Krim, which is a black tomato. Right now, it looks like the shape of the tomato will be plum - like an egg-shaped tomato.

What color will come through? Brown, black, revert back to something else? Will it taste good? Only time will tell. But how much fun is it to watch something grow and see what happens. Try a new plant in your garden. Order some seeds for something different and see how it behaves in. your garden. 

Also during this time, most library systems have opened up resources to patrons. Use them. Explore a new subject. Do some genealogical research on your family. 

There are also loads of museums and parks which are offering virtual tours. Just think, 'walk' through a museum without having to deal with crowds.

So get out the proverbial magnifying glass and shovel - look and dig around. You might just be amazed at what you find. 

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Seedy Saturday - Things Are Bursting Out All Over!

After a week of rainy and cool temperatures, the tables have turned. It's now hot and humid and a bit of rain every now and then. Which makes the tomatoes very happy. All of them have flowers and most of them are actually starting to set fruit. Now is the fun time.

I also had several plants which needed repotting, so on Thursday I dragged everything inside, outside. And along with the plants recently purchased I did some repotting. 

These are the plants which will be coming back inside now they are repotted and I've cleaned and done a bit of rearranging in my room.

I also have two new ginger plants, one a variegated Japanese ginger "Dancing Crane" and a Black Ginger "Midnight". They are now in pots and under the palm tree with the other 'tropical' plants. And my regular ginger which I started from a piece of ginger from the grocery store now has 4 shoots coming up.

Now it's the waiting period. I have picked a few cherry tomatoes, a couple of tomatoes from my Patio tomato and my Park's Whopper (which are definitely not whoppers). But all the other plants are going strong. I don't think I have seen my plants looking this good in years. Everything is at least 3 feet tall and many, except for the dwarf tomatoes, are taller. I have also picked a couple of Santa Fe Grande peppers, a couple of jalapeƱos and a couple of sweet banana peppers. 

A good pint of blueberries have been picked and in the freezer awaiting more blueberries. Those will be picked in the evening as it is too hot to pick during the day.

But for now it just a waiting game.

Friday, June 26, 2020

Food and Fun Friday - Porcupines In A Skillet

One 'amazing' thing about Facebook is I get tagged by Savvy and Texter in recipes they come across they want to try - and they know if they tell me, a lot of the time I will actually make it for them. That's the case with 'Porcupines in a Skillet' by Thirty Handmade Days.

It's a super easy recipe to cook up and pairs well with a salad. Actually, both Savvy and I feel you need a salad to round out the meal. It needs something green.

Our only complaint is that it is a bit bland. 

If you aren't into 'seasoned' food, this is great. I even used diced tomatoes that had been seasoned with basil and garlic, but it didn't help. However...

Since it makes a lot (a great recipe for a family meal) I am slotting it in for my meal tonight. I had originally planned to brown some hamburger meat and add to white queso and serve as a baked chalupa. 

Instead of browning additional meat, I am going to mix in the queso with the 'Porcupines' and serve up on tortillas. It will be a burrito-type meal and the queso will add a bit of spice to the mixture. 

With the tomatoes and peppers I have already harvested I will make some Pico de Gallo and add it in also. With the queso and Pico de Gallo it should make a tasty, and spicy, meal.

Will I make Porcupines in a Skillet again? Probably. It is easy and inexpensive, but I know now to add in additional spices to 'jazz' it up a bit. 

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Writing Wednesday - Planning Time and Camp NaNo

Since I am off four days this week due to some minor medical 'stuff', I have been using the time to do some planning for Q3. 

I said yesterday I was not going to do One Book July this year. However, to nudge my writing along (and since it's hot and humid outside) I am going to do Camp NaNo in July and work on my book and working on the series notebook.

Hopefully, this will also have the added benefit of being too busy to eat things I shouldn't. 

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Tuesday Sundries - One Book July 2020

This morning as I waited for my water to boil to make two big bowls of jello (colonoscopy on Wednesday), I was thinking about July and onward.

If you are like me, and it seems a lot of people, we are all ready for a reboot or regrouping for the second half of the year. Normally July would be dedicated to using only one planner for the entire month.

However, it ain't happening here!

My main reason for not doing One Book July is the fact my planners and journals are a place of peace for me. They give me stability and focus. 

In fact, while I am off the next couple of days I am working on my Q3 plans and they involve a couple of new planners - one for health and one for projects. And with July, it's also Camp NaNo and I want to concentrate on getting on with Sanctuary, which I have neglected for months now.


There will be no One Book July on my desk. In fact, in checking out videos on YouTube, there isn't anything from the usual people I associate with this event. Maybe I'm not the only one finding peace in multiple planners at the present time.