Happiness Sunday

I had a great five-day visit with Krissie and a great MRI report, and then I went back to work on Nita and thought, “You. know,  this is good stuff.”  I’m happy.

What made you happy this week?

83 thoughts on “Happiness Sunday

  1. That’s brilliant. So glad you’re liking Nita.

    I had a great weekend with my two closest friends from university – including (for Jessie) a canal trip across the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and up to Llangollen. Engineered by Thomas Telford at the end of the C18 – an amazing feat (highest canal aqueduct in the world, acc Wikipedia). It was very peaceful gliding along for a couple of hours, looking at all the wildflowers along the bank.

    Helen and Emily came back and painted the back of the house in two days. I’d agonized over which cream to use, but am pleased with the one I chose. It now needs a lot of plants to soften it.

    I’ve been deep into garden design in every spare moment, and plan to visit David Austin Roses tomorrow to see which ones grab me. I’ve decided to grow tree fruit on the allotment, rather than battle the semi-shade here, so there’ll be a lot more space for roses and other climbers.

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    1. I love that you can grow perennials (trees!) in your allotment. Most of the community gardens in the U.S. seem to prohibit that sort of thing. At least the ones I’m familiar with insist on plowing the entire space every spring.

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      1. (Hope this doesn’t appear twice: I was out in the garden and lost my connection.)

        That’s crazy. What about no-dig gardeners? Wildlife-friendly plots? Sounds like traditional agriculture rather than modern gardening. Also sounds like they don’t want any of the peasants imagining they’ve got any security of tenure.

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        1. In North America most community gardens are simply fenced off areas with either raised beds or small in-ground plots that are rented on a yearly basis. There are some more progressive ones where people can plant flowers (I am not allowed to plant flowers in my community garden bed, only veg) or where they have communal berry bushes and fruit trees but in no way is the idea of having an allotment that is yours as entrenched here as it is in the UK.

          It changing but I think that for a long time growing your own veggies was seen as something poor people did. For farm families it was just routine but we weren’t the ones needing community garden plots. Yeah, a suburban housewife might stick a tomato plant in or plant a few peas but growing food is what farmers are for, yards are for flowers and lawns not vegetables.

          I think we are more focused on large-scale agriculture because that’s what we have.

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      2. In the community garden I belonged to, the rule was that you could not grow anything that was invasive or would get large enough to cast shade on a neighboring plot. This was in part because there were a few heritage trees (over 100 yrs) that shaded a few plots at various times of the days and any more shade would have rendered the plots unusable. You could not have structures other than raised beds. There was a community tool storage shed with some commonly held tools. I brought my own tools and took them home again. And in Boston I remember seeing a community garden where people had little structures to keep tools and enjoy lounging around.

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    2. I love David Austin roses! Years ago, I planted an Abraham Darby shrub rose that was the most beautiful thing in my garden. But by the second year, it had black spot, white spot, armies of japanese beetles, and was beginning to be shaded on the south by my neighbor’s trees. Plus my area is really poorly suited to rose growing — too hot and way too humid. It lasted only another year or two, and the flower colors changed too.

      If it were me, I’d take into strong account all the disease resistance and size guidance that knowledgeable growers can offer, and see if you can see it growing in a site similar to the one you want to plant it in. If I had full sun, lots of space, and a better climate, I’d plant a Strawberry Hill cultivar with great joy, but alas, you have to match the plant to its situation, rather than changing the entire setting to suit the plant.

      Good luck! Please post the name of the rose(s) you decide on — I’d love to hear more.

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      1. The great thing for me is, David Austin’s is only about thirty miles away, so pretty similar growing conditions. I grew Abraham Darby on my old allotment, and loved it. But since then my favourites have been Lady Emma Hamilton and Munstead Wood, with Crown Princess Margarita a really good doer, though not quite a favourite colour. I also love Rose de Rescht and Rosa x mutabilis, which aren’t David Austin.

        It would be good to try some others, although I do love these and may end up buying them again. Not that I’m going to buy any now: I’ll order them bare root and plant them in November.

        Will be taking pix for reference, and will post some to Instagram later in the week.

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        1. We have a Jude the Obscure that we love. I bought it after seeing it other people’s gardens. Beautiful apricot color and delicate lemony scent.

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    3. Please post the names of the David Austins you choose. I used to live in New Mexico, and had a bunch and I love them. They were so easy and smelled so great. When the Gertrude Jekyll was in bloom you could smell it in the neighboring yards. They’re just glorious.

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      1. In New Mexico you’d probably succeed with The Dark Lady, which I rashly bought despite the fact it wants more sun than we get on the Welsh Border. It didn’t thrive, but there was the occasional beautiful flower.

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        1. So this is embarrassing but I got into David Austins entirely by accident. Costco had a huge sale on them bare-root right after I bought my house and I bought 25 and planted them all over the place. I didn’t know they were fancy or special. I just had 3/4s of an acre and ditch irrigation and more willingness to work than sense. Every single one of those roses just took off. The canes on the Gertrude Jekyll were 15’ long the second year, and I had to learn how to prune. I pulled up an apricot tree to put in the Pat Austin and the Abraham Darby and I never regretted it for a moment. Now I’m in northern Colorado and I don’t think they’d make it through a winter here until global warming is another 10-15 years along.

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    4. My guy is consumed with envy, he thinks going across the canal on the aqueduct would be so cool. I would be leaning as far from the edge as I could get so the boat would not tip over. He really enjoyed our time in Oswestry. And asked me to tell you what a great time he had talking terraces with you.

      After we left you, we went to Hardwick Hall (a bit disappointing – more museum then house and garden although the Standby Mill was fascinating and the docents were very knowledgeable) then stopped at Beningbrough Hall and Gardens which has a new garden designed by Andy Sturgeon which is right up there with Powis. I will try to post some pictures on my Instagram account if I ever recover enough from jet lag to function again. You would love it.

      Take some pictures for us all of any really great roses you see at David Austin’s. Much to my distress with did not have time to go there.

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      1. Glad you had fun, Jessie. That garden sounds good: will investigate. We had to take care on the canal boat not to all go at once to look out at the view, because the boat was liable to tilt. There was a two-hour slow ride mostly through trees after that – so maybe not quite what J imagined! Walking the tow path may be a better bet.

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    5. OMG! David Austin Roses! Report! I’m reading his book Old Roses and English Roses right now! Be sure and look at the display garden. Eat ice cream. Report! Please.

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    6. I envy your nearness to David Austin Roses. I live in Central New Jersey in the U.S.; and I would have to travel to Austin, Texas to see his roses. Occasionally, the better garden centers carry them; but the selection is sparse.

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        1. The Thomas Hardy references are getting a bit heavy, I think. Not keen on contemplating The Return of the Native or Jude the Obscure when relaxing in my garden. Perhaps they should switch to Jane Austen. I could suggest it to them.

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  2. It has been the most sanest winter vacation I ever had. Still lots of school work left undone, but, so many other things are done. I actually managed to see a LOT of friends and family. It’s more than I usually do and frankly, it’s helped me realise, I truly have people who love me by choice, not because they have to. I need to carry this feeling and knowledge with me to work so I can deal with the strife that comes of a place rife with favouritism and nepotism.

    I’ve ben for therapy once a week and we have a plan in place for self care for 21 days before my next session. I am actually optimistic.

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  3. I’ve been enjoying my week off from work. I’ve mostly been puttering, and catching up on things I’ve DVRed, and working on projects (three completed, many others still being worked on). It’s been too hot to do anything outside!

    On Thursday, my neighborhood (a small one, probably 100 homes on 4 streets) had a 4th of July parade. Someone got a city firetruck to come, so they led the parade, while kids on bikes, trikes, pulled in wagons or pushed in strollers came behind. I enjoyed waving at everyone passing by (including the moving truck that happened to come through just before the parade. They were good sports and waved back.)

    Later that day, we drove to my DH’s hometown. We grilled burgers and hotdogs with his mom and his brother, then went to the usual viewing place for small town fireworks. One three-year-old nephew was really excited to be allowed to be out late to see them. That was fun too.

    Today I hope to finish up a project or two and get ready for the week ahead. I’m going to have to schedule more time off soon!

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  4. Your good MRI mademe very happy!

    Have really been enjoying 4 days off with only a few (good) things scheduled in them.

    Enjoyed re-reading a Mauve Binchey and having new thoughts about one of the characters, even though I have lost count of the number of times I have read this. Some of them are too grim for me these days, especially the short stories, but the way she writes people – just amazing!

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    1. Circle of Friends was a revelation for me when I read it as a teen. It was one of the first books I read where one of the heroine’s happy endings was not “gets her man” but I was sure it was the right ending for her and I was also happy for her, even through her heartbreak.
      I might revisit some of Ms Binchy’s earlier books, actually, now that I’m a proper grown-up (in theory) – it’s at least two decades since I read some of them!

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  5. Hot and humid this week but after a long, wet spring, no complaints from me. My garden is happy and just enough rain to keep the rain barrel full. I met a friend for drinks after work one evening – she introduced me to a new restaurant. A couple of my staff organized a lunch to a new take-out pizza place near the office – they had a yummy vegan options. Nice break from a busy week. DH and DS are planning a trip through the Canadian Rockies later this month and I’m tagging along as far as Calgary to stay with an friend near Banff. We’ve known each other since our early 20s but live in different provinces. We re-connected last year after and I’m looking forward to spending time with her.

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  6. Getting stuck in about the garden! Nothing fancy – just weeding and tidying up. Had builders in last summer so garden was neglected, stomped on, ripped up and I’m still finding builder “litter” trapped under shrubs etc.
    It’s now looking under control except for the fearsome triffid (OK, maybe just a bramble) that is sending branches towards my house. I need tougher gloves to tackle that one!

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    1. Did you see that alarming speeded-up film of a bramble taking over a bit of woodland that opened one of David Attenborough’s series years ago – the one on plants – ? I’ve not looked at brambles the same since.

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  7. Up at husband’s family lake cottage for the weekend having fun and allergies in equal measure. It’s joyful watching three generations love this lake. It’s a drag to be sleeping on a mattress that makes my neck stiff, but at least I’m not out in the tent! The family keeps growing but the cottage stays the same size, haha.

    I’m also having an enforced social media break as I misplaced my phone on the way out the door (cross your fingers for me that I haven’t lost it entirely, un-backed-up photos and all) but luckily I was able to swipe dear husband’s phone long enough to check in with Argh.

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  8. Happily sitting in my favorite local diner/bar/hangout spot, watching the World Cup final with a big crowd of people. And there is cake!

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  9. Happy you’re at that stage in the writing process that makes you see the greatness of your work. Can’t wait to read about Nita and Nick!

    Also happy to be reading about Sam Vimes again, because seriously, Sam Vimes. <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 (Only minor complaint is I'm not so fond of Nigel Planer's voicing of him, having a constant stuffed nose and sounding slightly…less intelligent. But well, it's still Vimes so I'll manage until Stephen Briggs takes over in Fifth Elephant.)

    Just found a bag of liquorice lumps covered in white chocolate that my little sister gave me for my birthday, and that made me happy because I had totally forgotten I
    had them and I feel that I really need them right now so YAY!
    Small happythings but still happythings. All happythings count, right?

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  10. Joy was spending the day on Bowen Island with writer friends. Best day this week, all the work accomplished this week counts too, but…a me day with friends doing something we all love is a treat.

    Getting ready to go back up to the Wells and finish last of the reno; painting the deck railing, changing the kitchen countertops and new carpet ruined by a former tenant. Finger crossed I don’t have to go up for a long while. Please!

    Yes, Jane, please let us know which David Austen roses you choose. Love roses.

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  11. Jenny, it’s terrific that you feel good about Nita.

    I’m grateful to have my own room for art, but it was a mess. Inspired by Argh tales of decluttering, I spent time this week making it a place to feel happy instead of guilty.

    Maybe I’ll manage before/after photos on Working Wednesday.

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  12. Happiness is finally – finally – setting up my relatively new HP printer (wireless, in keeping up with the times), and actually printing something. Then discovering that it is a scanner, too.

    Happiness is sharing my new car with my dotter. It is also giggleworthy, watching her attempt to fit all four grandchildren into a Ford Fiesta. (Think, “clown car.”) Her car – still in the shop, which is not happy-making – is a Routan, a VW SUV. It seats six easily with separate video and earphones, etc.

    Happiness is enabling the dotter’s new-found gum addiction. She chews a lot of gum.

    Happiness is a pack of Snickers Ice Cream Bars. Happy Ice Cream Month!

    Happiness is a New Pair of Shoes! The outside edges of the heals of the old pair were worn down and actually making it hurt to walk. Same brand, same size, same everything – but no wear and tear. Dr. Scholls, Walmart, $26.

    Happiness is a Favorite Author doing neat author stuff. You go, Jenny!

    Happiness is finishing a re-read of a series. Harmon’s Wearing the Cape series, in anticipation of the next book, Consequences. Bujold’s Penric and Desdemona series – the seventh novella is complete and in final edit, coming “real soon now.”

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    1. Latest report on the Bujold: a week or two! Hooray! I’m re-reading the Penrics; been doing it slowly, but I think I better speed up.

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    2. Oh Gary! Is there really going to be another novella in the Penric series? I have enjoyed reading all of them, and also listening Grover Gardner narrate them, The Prisoner of Limnos, being what I thought was the last. All the novels in the World of the Five Gods have given me joy. The Curse of Chalion (narrated by Lloyd James) and The Paladin of Souls (narrated by Kate Reading) converted me to audio, as an occasional alternative to reading.

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  13. Had a wonderful week-long visit with my BIL (he lives in Thailand so I hadn’t seen him in 4 years) – we celebrated Canada and Independence Days, he and DH took care of my moving my late brother’s motorcycle for me, and we made a 3-hour drive to surprise friends for an art opening. And then I got to rest.

    And got a tattoo.

    And watched the US women win the World Cup.

    So yeah, a happy week.

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    1. Tatoo photo, please! C’mon, Carol. Unless it’s in a non-public viewing area, of course.

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        1. This is so dope! I just looked up the meaning of your tattoo – reminds me of when Jenny blogged during Agnes and the Hitman, and she said how Bob would make her walk the terrain (something along those lines, I don’t remember precisely) as part of the writing process.

          I’ve been wanting a tattoo for 16 years, but never worked up to it. However, it’s been on my mind more heavily this year – I might might might do so upon my birthday this year.

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        2. I have a dragonfly tattoo on my shoulder and a special one around my ankle which is representative of my love of plants, cats, and books.

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          1. Very cool, Carol.

            I get a stick on tattoo (maple leaf) for Canada Day. I’m a chicken.

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    2. Yay for tattoos. I have two and love them both; I should follow you and get a third so I could actually see it. Now that I got my hair cut so short, people are asking about the one on the back of my neck. I’m going to have to start washing my neck.

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  14. Happiness for me is having the heat wave break while it’s still the weekend so I can go outside comfortably. I got my hedge trimmed (about 8 feet tall and app 30 feet long) today without too much discomfort (mosquitos).

    My elder and younger sisters conspired to get me the 23andme genetic test kit and I got my results very quickly. Among other things, I am considered more likely than others to be attractive to mosquitos (I could have told them that! lol), more likely to have freckles (yup), my hair is not likely to be thick or curly but might be wavy (yes, and sort of no, it’s somewhat curly), and I don’t have the genes for the BRAC1 (or whatever it’s called)breast cancer.

    My heritage is predominately British Isles/Ireland, but not Orkney. A little bit of French/German and a fraction of a percent of Scandinavian plus a bit of Western Europe, no specific areas mentioned, BUT…no Native American which, even though I pretty much expected it, nearly broke my heart. I was a believing child and when my paternal grandmother swore that we had Native American ancestry froma few generations ago, I believed her wholeheartedly. I wanted it to be true. The funny thing is that my youngest sister has a tiny fraction of a percent of it in her DNA and she didn’t want it, she wanted more Norse (game of thrones fan)!

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    1. Correction…not Orkney, but Guernsey was the location with no ancestral results. And…I have 283 Neanderthal variations in my DNA; one of which is associated with height. According to the site, I am likely to be .1″ taller than the average. Yay me! Lol

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    2. Rouan, Just because you don’t have the Native American DNA does not mean you do not have a Native American ancestor. It means you did not inherit that bit of DNA. I read an article recently by a woman whose maternal grandmother was Italian so she knew she was a quarter Italian. Her mother had the Italian DNA as did her two sisters to varying degrees. She, however, had none. And no she was not adopted. Her DNA showed her closely related to mother and sisters, she just received all the lemon jellybeans and they received the strawberry and licorice.

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  15. Three happies. One is found on our Locals FB page where a constant-commenting lady sits on her boat in the yacht club messaging her joy at all the fun Fourth activities: Parade! Fireworks! Earthquake! Pretty sure folks in Ridgemont looking at ruined homes, ground still shaking, feel otherwise. The thrill for me here is observing an encompassing display of the Oblivious.

    Editor assigned me to visit and write about fairy gardens, the unlikeliest yoking of writer to topic. So ill-suited the pairing, I almost wrote “ferry” gardens. I am amused.

    A friend received a wonderful reprieving MRI report this week and is reinvigorated in her writing.

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  16. All in all we had a pretty good week our granddaughter brought a friend, her sister and one skunk free dog. So four girls. They decided to stay over night so my son pitched a tent in the yard for them. Yeh, that lasted until midnight. The next morning I woke up to girls sleeping on the sofa and love seat in the living room and one slept on the air bed upstairs. The pooch followed the oldest upstairs. During the week we received two reverse phone calls from the police and fire department regarding fireworks and safety for the town. Although it seemed to me there were more fireworks and better displays than usual. Hmmm!

    Back to the skunk free dog. After trying an assortment of remedies the best was a mixture of Dawn dishwashing liquid and apple cider vinegar.

    Jenny, I was so happy to read that you received good results from your MRI it tends to lift the spirits of all us Arghers.

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  17. Happy to have survived a 4 day family wedding filled with weird vibes and drama, but getting to catch up with some amazing distant cousins, aunts and uncles. Happy to be on the road home with a pitstop at Steak and Shake, enjoying fries and a Nutella milkshake.

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  18. Jenny, your happys made my week.

    On a personal note, I am happy that I can now afford to go to a real dentist. The filling I got at the free clinic fell out after only 8 days , taking a piece of my tooth with it. Although this is a smaller piece of tooth than the last filling took with it, I am really grateful that I can now afford a more competent and permanent solution.

    Last night’s weather forecast made me VERY happy. They are predicting a full 8 days without rain and that cannot fail to make the whole city feel better.

    The fact that I have now figured out what bothered me about a new therapist I saw makes me happy, too . I saw this guy for the first time on Wednesday and I couldn’t quite put my finger on what made me uncomfortable about him. He kept going on and on about that what he did was a technique, not a therapy and that it worked for everyone. It made me very uneasy because there is nothing harder than trying to work with a True Believer.
    Since the logistics for seeing this guy are very difficult, I couldn’t tell if the aggravation I felt had to do with the time and effort involved in transportation or the fact that this guy struck me as very glib. But now that I’ve had some time to think, I’m going to make a new list of questions for him. If his answers don’t make any more sense the second time around, he is obviously not what I need at this time. I feel confident that I will be able to tell after hearing his spiel another time.

    Yesterday I picked up a load of books at the library that I hope will make me very happy. The author of last year’s favorite book (for both me and my whole book club) has a new book out and while the reviews aren’t as good as they were for the first one, it looks interesting and I didn’t have to wait an eternity to get a copy. It felt like winning the lottery. And the other 2 books I got had really good reviews as well.

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    1. It’s so important to get the right fit with a therapist, isn’t it. I would pretty much automatically distrust anyone who thought their method worked for everyone. I want a bit of humility in a therapist, not someone who is going to FIX me. And humour. Humour is important too.

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      1. By which I mean to say, he sounds like a top-down therapist rather than a bottom-up one. IMO it’s the bottom-up ones who listen, and who really see you. Which for me is the whole point of the thing.

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  19. I’m very happy that you had good test results and are enjoying Nita.

    I’m not so much happy as grateful that our house offer fell through. We were under contact contingent on home inspection, and there turned out to be a lot more than we were expecting, including extensive mold. So, no house, but no mold either. We keep searching.

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  20. I went to the farmers market and saw two former students and two children who be in my class next year. Those last two are both uncertain about change so it is good to see them before school starts again.

    I got so many good things: ground lamb, eggs, apricots, cherries, raspberries, freshly ground whole wheat flour, cabbage, lettuce, peas, cilantro, fresh garlic, yogurt and, for the walk home, a chocolate banana popsicle. I didn’t even visit any of the bakery stalls or the place that has the delicious smoked oysters. My bags were too full and I spent all my money.

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    1. What an amazing farmer’s market, Sara! Where in the world does one have that kind of variety (certainly not where I live)?

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      1. In Portland, OR the farmers’ markets are equally as good (well – we are only 175 miles apart). You can also get an assortment of wild mushrooms, organic eggs – chicken, duck and sometimes quail, fresh roasted coffee beans, basil, local cheeses, live oysters, hazelnuts and walnuts in the fall, sometimes liquors, sometimes wine (I don’t know if Washington State allows this), cut flowers, herbs and perennials and other live plants in pots, beeswax candles, tons of different food stalls like tamales, crepes, craft hot dogs and sausages, bakeries, home-made jams, conserves, relishes, chutneys.

        Every neighborhood has one on a specific day of the week and specific time. Ours is Saturday 9am to 1pm. My guy goes down almost every week for me and if we need something before then, I sometimes talk him into going further afield to a different market. Downtown is Wed. and Sunday. SE is on Thurs. afternoon. I don’t keep track of the others but they are listed on-line.

        When we lived in Philadelphia 40 years ago there was an amazing one. It was organized along the lines of our farmers market here. The only other one I had seen prior to that was Seattle’s Pike Place Market which at the time put any other farmer’s market I have ever seen to shame. They had a market building with several fish stalls and butcher’s shops and vegetable stands and craft stalls and custom-made stuff. The original Starbuck’s was located across the street from it. It originally sold bins of fresh-roasted coffee beans and loose leaf teas and coffee pots and tea pots and cups. Capuccinos, and the like were just a side-line.

        When my guy got off the ferry which he took back and forth to work, he walked up the stairs (Seattle has hills – steep hills) through the market and would do any shopping I needed. Sometimes if I had no classes, I would meet him there.

        2+
      2. Edmonton (Alberta not Kentucky, I’ve never been to a farmer’s market there) has some amazing markets. The one in St. Albert is huge. We always plan to get there at least 30 minutes before it opens, it’s an outdoor one so you can wander around beforehand, to scope out what we want and where we want to buy it from so we can get out of there before the hordes arrive.

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      3. Portland Maine used to have fantastic farmers markets – produce, baked goods, cheeses, meats, wool, sometimes ceramics – and the Common Grounds Country Fair was just amazing.

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  21. It is a reasonable temperature today, and very beautiful. Got a cord and a half of wood stacked in my garage, half a cord to go. Got really hot and sweaty, but that’s what showers are for. I’ll get a cord of dry in September to start the winter with.

    Also got my air conditioner put in the window, and my patio furniture rescued from the back of the garage. My ex took child #4 and me to lunch as well. Now if I can get my last 2000 words done, I’ll have finished a WIP, and a very nice Sunday.

    10+
  22. I’m incredibly happy about your good news, Jenny, especially the MRI results. (I’ve lost too many people in the last year and a bit.) Also, as a fellow author, huzzah for that “this is a good book” moment.

    My first happy is that last Sunday I got to go to the local (an hour away) Faerie Festival with friends including my goddess-children. The weather was a blissful mid-70’s with a few sprinkles, unlike the 90+ of last year and the downpour (with accompanying mud) of the year before. I got a henna tattoo of a cat sitting on a crescent moon, didn’t spend too much money, and hung out with people I loved. A lot of happy there.

    Then on Friday night I finished the goddess empowerment for women nonfiction for St. Martin’s Press and sent it off to my editor. She’s new to me, so I’m not sure how much in the way of revisions to expect, but since there was a point where I wasn’t sure I’d be able to finish the book at all, this is still a pretty big happy. Also, I got an idea for another nonfiction when I was sure I had run out of things to write about after 12 books, so big happy there too. (Not that there is a guarantee it will sell, but at this point, just knowing there is an idea is great,)

    Volunteered at the local rescue organization where I got my cat Harry Dresden a year and a half ago. Just 2 hours on the 4th, to give their regular people a break, and a bit on Saturday on my way to the Farmer’s Market. I won’t have the time and energy to do it often, but it felt good to give back in ways other than donations. (Plus, it was research for a book. So bonus.) AND I didn’t come home with a kitten, which was nothing short of a miracle, even if a kitten would have made me pretty darn happy.

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  23. I am happy because it is once again a cool gray weekend, and because I actually launched myself into the attic this morning to take advantage of said cool gray conditions and Do Things.

    The last two rolls of insulation have been laid out over the den (there wasn’t any over half that room before). None of the panel insulation I nailed up last winter has fallen down. The 2×4 sheets of OSB that I use to traverse the rafters are now all in useful places. And – drumroll please – the chimney flue for the long-removed gas furnace has been hacked apart so that the roof vent may now actually serve to vent the attic. Physics would seem to indicate that was my best, cheapest option for venting. Now we will have to wait for the next hot day (imminent) to see if these small measures do help keep the house a couple of degrees cooler.

    Covered with bruises from belly-crawling over rafters, hands are sore/tired, but happy.

    9+
  24. That feeling of coming back to a wip and realising it’s good is the best thing. So I’m really pleased to hear it, Jenny. I sent the chicken book (still no title) to my first reader on Friday, and he got back to me on Saturday loving it. So that’s happiness and reassurance, and I’ve read over his notes about ten times so far just to wallow in his comments. Today I get down to working on the things that need fixing.

    My drama queen hip is settling down, so I can do a bit more. Had a massage on Saturday with a masseur I’ve been going to for years, and we spent most of the hour laughing, so I got a double bang for my buck. And yesterday I had a meeting at my house with some exceptionally nice people, and dragooned them into filling my woodbox for me, because that’s the hardest thing to do at the moment. They did it with enthusiasm, and my woodbox is now overflowing.

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  25. I’m especially happy to hear of the good MRI report. A friend in chemo just got PETscan reports–no activity of disease. That made me happy this week. Also—eating the Rainier cherries she brought me when we celebrated the 4th with an indoor picnic and then driving around a local park.

    8+
  26. So glad to hear your good news, Jenny! May the rest of your summer go smoothly on all fronts!

    I opened up a WIP that I’ve been avoiding for months. It’s really not that bad; it’s just written in two different styles (first stab, and second stab), with a huge bit missing in the middle, and the ending up in the air. I’m trying hard to get up the courage to re-write it. I’m afraid of making it worse.

    (But, the thing I’m telling myself is that it could go either way: I could make it worse, I could make it better, but at any rate, I still have the old stuff on the computer and backed up two places, so I can always go back again.)

    Still, good stuff in there.

    Plus, I got pizza at Costco . . . brought it home (three hours drive) and froze it, so there will be pizza whenever I need a little bit of food happiness.

    6+
  27. This is an indirect thing to be happy about, but I got two clues this week from different sewing/patternmaking sources on why I cannot find jeans that fit any more, and why they’ve *all* changed in the last decade — this is specific to pants always having a big gap at the back waist even if they fit the waist and the hips, and also to always wearing out the backs of the hems.

    The general answer is that fitting curves requires pattern pieces that aren’t rectangular, but rectangular pieces fit together more closely on the cutting table and also don’t have bias-to-bias seams. I can verify that my old pants that used to fit had deeper back gussets and curvier seams.

    Apparently there’s a whole lot of modern how-things-are-made-cheaper that makes it unlikely I’ll get mass market pants again, but I have more hope of making my own. I know pants-fitting is ambitious, but the ones I can buy are falling off.

    7+
  28. Yesterday I walked 5km up a hill and then 5km back down. It wasn’t a steep climb but it was a lovely sunny day and the views were great. Since I started walking regularly in March, I’ve at least doubled how far I can go. I’m very happy about that. I want to double it again by the end of the year and I should be on track for that.

    11+
  29. So happy the MRI result was good and that you’re happily writing, or rewriting.
    My happiness was the earth stopped shaking. Had to go to my daughter’s one level home after the 7.1 earthquake. Too scary in the three story apartment building. All the years living in California and I’m still a scaredy cat.

    9+
    1. I’ve heard Australia experiences quakes too, and even Tassie these days. We’re all on the Pacific Rim. I’m fierce on tying a home to its foundation. Not outrageously costly, and saves.

      1+
  30. I’ve got all sorts of happiness going on lately. My Dad is out of the hospital after heart failure. He’s on meds but he’s back to feeling good. He’s 81 and fairly active. Mom takes good care of him. She’s doing great too.

    I was off of work for 10 days. I spent time with family in Door County. I spent time camping with friends in a state park. And we put the trailer on our land in Rhinelander for the summer. We’re making progress on figuring out stuff on what we want to do on the land. We’ve got a generator as we have no power, no water and sadly, no shade.

    I also whacked off about 6 inches of hair, while it was in a pony tail, because it was long, dry, and tangled. And hot and uncomfortable. I felt so much cooler and more comfortable afterwards. My hair is still shoulder length, mostly. There’s a slight inverse “v” going on, due to being in a pony tail.

    I’m back at work today, which kinda sucks. But it’s been a good and happy 2 weeks.

    8+
  31. As Micki confirms above, Penric and Desdemona #7, The Orphans of Raspay, a Sequel to The Prisoner of Limnos, is due “real soon now.”

    From Lois’s blog at goodreads:

    Vendor page copy will be, roughly:

    When the ship in which they are traveling is captured by Carpagamon island raiders, Temple sorcerer Penric and his resident demon Desdemona find their life complicated by two young orphans, Lencia and Seuka Corva, far from home and searching for their missing father. Pen and Des will need all their combined talents of mind and magic to unravel the mysteries of the sisters and escape from the pirate stronghold.

    This novella follows about a year after the events of “The Prisoner of Limnos”.

    E-publication before the end of the month, I’m pretty sure; this week or next, maybe. I still have some last polishing and fretting to do on the text file, and then there is the vexing question of a map.

    Later on, I hope to do an illustrated post about the development of the cover art.

    Ron’s website: http://www.black-cat-studios.com/

    Ta, L.

    The blog entry has cover art! by Ron Miller.

    1+
  32. Have just finished listening to “Bet Me” & thoroughly enjoyed.
    Doing cardmaking at the same time & found at times I was laughing so much I had to stop so wouldn’t muck up.
    Enjoy the audiobooks as I can do other things at same time.

    0

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