Happiness is Summer Food

I haven’t been cooking much (does the microwave count?) because my kitchen is still a disaster area (tip: do not set fire to the top of your stove) but I’m having a wonderful time with food anyway: big salads with cheese and peppers and croutons and protein and slashing of Caesar or Ranch or Italian dressing (really just sandwiches without bread if you don’t count the croutons), cold roast beef or braunschweiger on whole wheat with potato salad and carrots and celery dipped into Ranch, cheese and mustard sandwiches and tomato-basil sipping soup, almost everything cold (it’s in the 80s here, sneaking up to the 90s) and everything super easy. Easy food makes me happy. I love cooking but not in the summer. Also Snickers Ice Cream Bars, made by the Devil, I’m pretty sure.

What made you happy this week?

82 thoughts on “Happiness is Summer Food

  1. First time being the first commenter! I’ve continued with the month-long birthday festivities–old friend visit, beach day, belated birthday Ethiopian-takeout dinner–while still managing (mostly) to temporarily avoid thinking about terrifying things like my dried-up job and income, potential health dangers of my dad’s upcoming 80th birthday party, my ADHD inability to get shit done, and general depression and anxiety.

  2. I’m happy about fabulous weather, a hilarious dinner out with a friend, and getting things sorted concerning my lost wallet and our upcoming trip out West. And, still, slowly, losing weight. I think that after 6 years of planting and transplanting my native perennial gardens are set to have blooms from early spring until the deep frosts in late November, early December.

  3. Thanks for the menu ideas! I am an unenthusiastic cook and I’ve been especially low on inspiration thus summer.

    1. Two years ago, my best friend left on a two-month vacation trip to visit in-laws in Europe, leaving me with a box of bird suet cakes and some other random birdseed supplies that she thought might get old or stale in their absence.

      We found an old suet feeder in the toolshed and put it out on a lark. Then we were happy when the woodpeckers discovered it, and we had a woodpecker festival for five or six months — so gratifying, for both us and the woodpeckers!

      And so we kept on buying suet, even after my friend’s supply ran out, and as time went on, other birds discovered that hey — they liked it too! But it was when the sparrow population realized that here was a food they could eat just like the big guys that we began seeing a cloud of wings appearing each time we renewed the suet, and the woodpeckers (shyer and more solitary than many other birds) had gotten crowded out.

      Yesterday both of us humans were out in the back yard doing things — sweeping on one side of the yard, cleaning the pond filter on the other — when we noticed a Downy woodpecker enjoying suet totally alone on the cage, ignoring us as the crowds of sparrows sat around on branches looking envious. So we now have a pro-woodpecker scheme for thwarting the masses in favor of preferred individuals that would do any old dictator quite proud. Which makes me happy. 🙂

  4. My happiness is having Argh Nation to make me smile even when I’m feeling like a Cranky old Woman. Also thankful for the food ideas. Good food sounds wonderful and I’m so likely just to grab a gas station sandwich when I’m tired of eating one of the three meals I make. (Veggie Chili, Mushroom Bourguignon, Minestrone without noodles.)

    If I use salad out of a bag that should satisfy the quick and easy part.

    1. My friend has arthritis, her knees are especially bothering her.
      She has started a bone broth lifestyle change in eating.
      She gets meat bones, bone broth, carrots, celery, onions, like making stew, adds
      Turmeric, sage, onion salt, garlic whole, anything that reduces inflammation.
      Stews slowly until tender.
      Strains vegetables, puts strained vegetables into blender, add the bone broth, blend, add collagen, protein powder, blend again. Drink in small, often. Breakfast, mid morning, noon, mid afternoon, dinner, stay hydrated with water, cut out citrus drinks, sodas, milk products.
      Success: She feels better than she has in years, she feels satisfied, not hungry, or deprived, her knees, all her joints, NO PAIN. She has ENERGY. She plans to add slowly other food groups that are compatible, and natural herbs that reduce inflammation, promote rebuilding collagen .
      I am not promoting a fad diet. I am happy my friend is feeling better, and is having a lifestyle change, that is giving her NO PAIN and she has lost inches in her waist, stomach, and different areas.
      Anything that promotes NO INFLAMMATION, REDUCES PAIN. I’M Happy for her.
      If this sounds like something you would like, she did check with her Doctor. He approved.
      You might a health professional. Please, remember, she is taking in to account that when she “falls off the wagon” it will be in moderation. NO beating herself up, go back to bone broth with blended veggies of various kinds. I suggested adding Bok Choy- Chinese cabbage. Hope this helps.

  5. I did a good deed for my bff (checked out an apartment for her here in PT) and while the apartment wasn’t all that, I discovered near it a new grocery store within walking distance of our place, especially for when my granny cart arrives. There’s only so much one wants to put in a backpack for a 900 meter walk, after all.

    Our container has, at last, landed here in Portugal. It still has to clear customs, and then we have to have it delivered, but at least most of our stuff is in the same country as we are, which is happy-making. My friends here say that the container arrival is like Christmas – I can see that!

    1. How exciting. Love reading of your new life in Portugal. Miss travelling to Europe. Soon we hope.

  6. This is a bit off-topic, but thought this is the group who would appreciate it.

    As I wrote a few days back, we live just around the corner from where the worst of the flood disaster area starts here in Germany (we were not hit, thank FSM).

    Anyway, I discovered something in one of the gazillions of YouTube clips that would interest the Crusie community, especially of fans of Agnes and the Hitman (and who among us isn’t?).

    Everybody certainly remembers the scene in Agnes after the bridge went out — Shane is sitting on the front porch waiting and Agnes comes out to join him while he waits for something. That something was a folding bridge that his military buddies delivered for him, so he can save the wedding (and get the girl).

    The German Army (Bundeswehr) has about 900 soldiers helping with the disaster relief and since a significant number of bridges were taken out with the floods, one of the things the Bundewehr has done is to put in pontoon bridges and tank-delivered folding bridges like in Agnes. Well, in one of the YouTube clips, taken in a little village called Rech, the guy taking the video rides his bike over one of these bridges! Here’s the clip:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w51BU-JLGAY

    (You can also see a tiny bit of the devastation.)

    Just in case some of you have only read about, but not seen what Bob describes in Agnes, here’s a short demonstration clip of a similar one:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q3gKalRPHio

  7. Hi Jenny, I think my last comment is in moderation because I sent a couple of links with it…

    1. Nope, there’s nothing in moderation.
      You were, however, in the spam folder, hanging out with those lowlifes. Thanks for the heads up; I never check in there. (It’s creepy in there.)

      1. I remembered you mentioning that things went to odd places… 😁 and to let you know!

      2. Message still has the “awaiting moderation” tag at the top (although I can now see it, which I couldn’t before). Not that it’s a big deal but…

        1. Huh, there was something in moderation, too, unless marking it not not-spam moved it into moderation. Argh. It’s out now.

  8. All my happy stuff is embargoed until next week, so I’ll have a bunch next Sunday. But I’m secretly happy already.

  9. After a few days of summer sunshine it’s back to the doom and gloom of the new July 2021 with rainy and breezy weather. So today I chose to read a Tessa Bailey book It Happened One Summer to ward off the day with a little humor.

    My husband made homemade tomato soup this week and froze half of it for another time. Our freezer is on the lower half of the refrigerator so it is much bigger than the other way around. This summer along with the usual suspects, ice cream, it now contains popsicles, fudgicles, push ups and what was formally called Hoodsies. Back when I was younger you would lick off the cover to reveal a celebrity face. And they came with a wooden spoon. Yeah, those days are gone. He also bought himself a soda stream kitchen gadget which I thought was something else to line up on the counter until it worked on an almost flat bottle of Sprite. I was impressed.

    Back when we first bought this house it had a pantry, it was removed to make room for renovations. Come to think of it there was also a pantry in our first apartment in Boston. And there weren’t as many gadgets to store.

  10. I own myself an indifferent cook: I’ve blogged to that effect. Five variations of “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Chili” interspersed with eggs and bacon do not a chef make.

    Today, I have gathered ground meat, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, pepper, wine, mushrooms and a quart or so of sour cream. I will inaugurate “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Stroganoff.” (I am finally tired of tomato sauce.) Of course, I’ll miss the egg noodles, but some things must be endured…

    1. I made it. I tasted it. Its new name is “Sherazell Ain’t Stroganoff.” It’s edible, but the name sticks. I have no urge to pour it on any kind of noodles. Eh, maybe on Konjac.

      1. Do you like quinoa? It has a boatload of protein, but it’s also a little carb-like, so could it substitute for the noodles?

        1. Its the carb thing that has (so far) kept me from trying quinoa. When I shop the rice aisle, the wildest I’ve gotten is Minute Rice Brown and Wild. And during this stretch of the diet, I’ve just avoided rice completely. Well, except for “Skinny Pasta Rice,” which is konjac spaghetti sliced up into rice-like lengths.

          I suspect I’m going to try some konjac fettucine with this concoction. And the rest of my post above goes, “Mistakes were made. A recipe suggested white wine. Was red in a box Merlot a poor choice? Were 5 ounces (147 mL) too much? Should I have decanted the liquid, which, besides the wine, contained a great deal of fat from the meats (beef and pork) before blending in the 24 ounces (680 grams) of sour cream? What about the onions? An entire frozen bag of diced onions may have been overkill.

          “I will live with my mistakes. I will endure.”

          1. Taste. As my name for it suggests, it did not resemble any stroganoff I’ve ever made, not even the Hamburger Helper variety. I ate 700 grams of it yesterday, spread out over three meals, or two meals and a snack. I can safely say, “It made me stronger.”

            I ate the first helping with a whole wheat tortilla shell, which improved the mess a bit. The second batch I mixed with another five ounces of sour cream, which improved it more. With that and the next batch, I had a slice of 647 bread. The extra sour cream made the second helping creamy. Breaking up the bread and dropping it in, helped.

            So, what did it taste like? It tasted like someone didn’t make stroganoff.

            I have another 700 grams leftover. Yes, I measure everything. I also have more sour cream, and it’s going in there. But not today – the dotter is ready to shop & dine, today.

  11. Happiness is finding a new stove that can be delivered quickly when your old one dies.

  12. Many happy things this week–lunch out with a friend to critique our poems; the chance to do a Survivors Teaching Students program, albeit on Zoom; and discovering that my local independent doughnut place now offers buckeye doughnuts–filled with a peanut butter/chocolate cream, frosted with chocolate, and a rosette of peanut butter on the top. I never go in there, I swear, but I was picking up a treat for someone’s birthday and succumbed. My arteries were in shock, but my mouth was very happy.

  13. I had my left knee replaced Wednesday on an outpatient basis and I am happy that it went well and that I got to come home the same day. There is nothing like recovering in my own home with my cat sitting on my chest.

      1. Thanks Elizabeth! I did it out of desperation because of my insane allergies. My house is my only safe harbor.

  14. I’m home alone while my loved ones are away at the beach. I have the dog to keep me busy. I actually don’t have to cook for anyone, including myself. Pretty much down to one meal per day. Salad and crab cake. Salad and fish sticks. Soup and salad. I supplement with fruit, cereal and raisin toast with cream cheese. If I pace it out right, I’m never hungry and with swimming and gardening,I lose weight. When I cook for others, it’s 2-3 squares and larger quantities. Solitude=weight loss. People=too much food.

  15. Karaoke is amazing.

    My friends (minus crush, who still makes noises about going and never goes, WHICH IS FINE) actually showed up on Monday, which was great. I didn’t even have to bug people to come. I also went to karaoke at a different place with the DJ and his daughter on Saturday, and that was a total blast. I have really missed that sort of thing.

    I’m not sure if I should be doing it any more, mind you, but I’m not feeling the screaming fear these days, so….I dunno. Also, even if I went agoraphobic again, I’m going to be forced out into the public by September 1 for work, so.

    I also got my pandemic hair done again, finally. I got the pink outta my hair and it’s light red now. Yay.

  16. Second last week of my coop and I finally learned how to drive the tractor. I’m not 100% comfortable with it – more complicated than it looks – but I can check it off my bucket list for the summer. Flowers are in full bloom on the farm – lots to harvest every day.

    I found 3 squashes on my plant this week – each weighed more than a pound. The beans are growing faster than I can pick them and despite eating them every day, I’m giving them away. My gladiolus that I planted from bulbs are starting to bloom. Our new back deck is finished and it’s lovely to sit outside and look at the garden through the glass (old deck had spindles which blocked the view).

    Brief visits with my SIL who was enroute from the US to visit her parents and a classmate who was in the city for the day.

  17. My husband went overboard planting tomatoes. We pretty much have to make pasta with cherry tomatoes every 2-3 days and frequent cucumber tomato salads with the big ones. We are on our last batch of garlic scape pistachio pesto. I cook scrambled eggs with squash blossoms and the occasional squash blossom soup. Nasturtium blossoms are almost ready for picking for salads.

    Our sorrel patch is not doing well but I do hope to get at least one batch of sorrel soup in.

    My son passed his PhD orals and we are now trying to watch the Olympic gymnastics although the time zone makes it tough to watch live. My very low profile kid was moved to write an indignant letter to the NYT explaining why their chart comparing Biles’ 2016 scores to her 2021 qualifying scores was comparing apples to oranges (different scoring systems) and it’s nice to see him speak up when he feels passionate.

    My daughter in England finally got her second Pfizer but unfortunately six days later got an app notice that she was exposed and has to quarantine for 10 days. Fortunately so far she tests negative.

    The great English opening up only waived quarantine for people entering the country who were vaccinated in the UK. Since we were vaccinated in the US, we are now contemplating our daughter coming here or all meeting in Europe.

      1. Just read that the government’s reviewing this policy, and that there might be better news for you on 31 July. Fingers crossed.

  18. I’m happy to be part of the Argh Nation…Arghonauts…Argh cherries… Arghers. You all make me feel home and safe. And I loved reading about your easy meals, Jenny. Easy is my go-to right now.

  19. My ex-landlady rang and caught me up with all the news of The Mountain, where I used to live. DK like my restructuring of the book. And there’ve been a fair number of people this weekend who’ve enjoyed my allotment, and who I’ve been able to encourage to grow more themselves.

  20. Picking up a dog-to-foster to adopt on Wednesday; her name is Pixie. Keeping my fingers crossed.

    Meanwhile, I have my loaner-dog, Rafa for a few days. He is realy skittish and would rather not be an ‘only child’. Still being away from his foster home will, we all hope, help him build some confidence.

    I have a busy Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday coming up and then it’ll all be about Pixie.

  21. I am happy that heirloom tomatoes are here and I can make gazpacho, my go-to non-cook summer meal. I am tepid about all of the ingredients by themselves but all together magic happens. And it is one of those dishes that the flavor improves as it sits around and it stays tasty for about 5 days in the refrigerator. And a bowl of it for lunch accompanied by rye krisp crackers with cheese melted on them (@ 25 seconds in the microwave) is wonderful.

    Since you did not ask, here is the recipe for Jessie’s gazpacho . Mince this stuff in the cuisinant in the following order:

    2 cloves peeled garlic
    1/2 large white onion
    1 peeled cucumber
    1 seeded red bell pepper
    1 generous handful of parsley or cilantro leaves
    2 pounds very ripe tomatoes
    2 slices of bread with the crusts removed
    1/4 cup olive oil
    1/4 sherry vinegar (this is essential – no substitutes)
    salt
    pepper
    2 cups water – if there is room add this in the blender, otherwise add it when you put it into the container to chill. Sometimes I fill my cup measuring cup with ice cubes, then add water to fill it to the proper amount. This is to get a head start on chilling.

    Sometimes I add a piece of fresh jalapeño with the garlic.

    Chill for several hours. Serve with croutons or toast.

  22. My happy is both happy and not happy. The good part is that I now have a functioning iPad; the not happy is that I needed to buy a new one. My former iPad kept giving me a dreaded black screen, which would eventually open up to a normal screen and I could use it. The intervals of normal vs black screen got less and less frequent and I couldn’t figure out how to fix it so today I succumbed and bought a new one. I like the other one better! Apple, in their determination to make us keep buying new items, changed the adaptor fit for the charger so I can’t use the former one ( which can be used with any adaptor). I hate Apple! It at least I can get online again.

    1. I love my new one. My old one had a cracked screen that was bound to shatter sooner or later, so I got the new one with the keyboard case and it’s wonderful. The only thing that keeps me from making it my prime computer is that the apps are so limited. But it’s better in every way from my last one, and my last one was terrific. Mine uses the same adaptor as my laptop, o not a problem. And it has facial recognition and a better camera and this great keyboard . . . I love it.

  23. I’ve spent the entire day lounging around reading, had homemade coconut ice cream, and have all next week off, so don’t have to look at my email!

  24. Had Key Lime Pie for desert, that’s pretty hard to beat. Or did I have it for dessert?
    Super soggy Sunday, I may go make eggplant parmigiana.

  25. I have a three-day weekend (taking a vacation day Monday), the work in-box was under control when I signed off Friday, and the weather has been milder i.e. less unspeakably hot.

    The husband and I have binge-watched High School Musical: The Musical: The Series, which is just as ridiculous as you’d expect but also quite entertaining. Except for some reason episode 12 of season 2 was not included and there are cliffhangers! Eventually they’ll add it to streaming, I’m sure.

    We also forced HBO Max to earn its keep with two good music documentaries – Bee Gees and Tina Turner. Now I can cancel it; those plus ‘In the Heights’ were definitely worth one month’s fee.

    Have almost nothing on the ‘must do’ list so spending most of my weekend reading is justifiable.

    The one thing that *is* must-do is to book our October travel to Florida. Going to visit my parents for the first time since Nov 2018. Off to see if Expedia remembers me.

  26. I spent Friday morning through Sunday morning (today) camping with my group and their families. Me, bestie Ellen, Chris and her hubby Charlie (in their camper) and Robin, hubby George, and my goddess children Nate (13) and Sophie (14). All of us vaccinated, including the kids, which was great. There was actual hugging, although not as much as there might have been because I am recovering from bronchitis and Robin from a head cold. Ellen and I stayed in a RV you could rent from the campground, which was kind of beat up but at least had AC, a real bed, and a bathroom.

    There was a lot of work (packing, unpacking, etc.) for just two days, but after a year plus of hardly seeing each other–we’re basically extended family and have been since Robin, Chris, and I started Blue Moon Circle in 2004– just being together was so much happy. Yummy food cooked outside, sitting by a river, epic games of Uno, and the joy of looking up to see Sophie reading two of my Llewellyn books (what can I say, she has good taste). Plus Bailey the dog. I’m exhausted, but it was lovely.

    Came back home to all kinds of complications and crap, but I’ll deal with it tomorrow.

  27. I started a “no-buy”. I’m aiming for 6 months, maybe a year.

    I cancelled one-click across all devices. I’m working through my TBR only. Especially non-fiction, about 12 of which are physical books.

    I actually still have DVDs that I like to watch. So, maybe I can give up on owning the Buffy box set that’s been on my Wishlist for about 9 years!

  28. I’m happy because this morning my DOS-based calendar program decided that the data file needed to be Rebuilt. I’ve been using this program since 1990, and I rely on it — I find it much more robust than any of the Windows-based programs, for no known reasons. However, under Windows 10 it needs a special shell which has its own autoexec.bat file and another separate batch file, unlike the good old days — Windows 95 — when I could just go to the command prompt and run the rebuild. I only had to spend ten minutes tweaking the batch files, and just added in the lines I needed while rem’ing the ones I didn’t. Worked like a charm. And this means that I may not need to keep the Windows 95 CPU just to hook up when the calendar needs it and nothing else.

    Also feeling interested anticipation because Monday is the date that Judge Parker in Michigan gave as the deadline for the Kraken attorneys to file their briefs justifying their wish not to be held accountable for their actions in the Big Lie lawsuits. Since Lin Wood has already contradicted himself in statements to the Michigan court and to the Delaware court, the requirement of the brief means he’ll have to take one position or the other on paper submitted under oath. [Comment: apparently Judge Parker was a terrific expert on cross-examination before being appointed to the bench, because she put up with no obfuscation offered by the Kraken bunch, and gave them no opportunity to offer it by allowing them to be represented by counsel — their own lawyer — without being present. If she had, their lawyer could have made a good many statements “to the best of my knowledge and belief” instead of forcing the Kraken lawyers to be responsible for their own words. I expect legal entertainment this week as the briefs are likely to be published.

    Lastly I’m happy because of rereading an old friend, but I’ll go into more details later, probably Thursday.

    1. I admit to skimming your first paragraph, leading me to read that you were “tweaking the bitch file.”

      1. Batch files, identified as ***.bat, are basically lists of DOS commands. Old-style programs used them extensively, and since they were a way of running a series of commands very efficiently, I used to write my own company or department-specific, especially if I wanted the guys to install something — new fonts, say — and didn’t want to make individual visits to their desks.

        SOME batch files can certainly be bitches, but none of MINE were. 😉

  29. I tried making black sesame ice cream yesterday using a recipe that calls for mixing heavy cream and putting it in the freezer rather than using an ice cream maker. It was ok, not great, but it inspired me to try making frozen yogurt using our actual ice cream maker. Stay tuned

    1. You’d probably have better texture if you whipped the heavy cream before you froze it, although it would still feel like frozen whipped cream. “Ice cream” texture is frozen custard — in fact, if you ever make an old-fashioned custard and it doesn’t turn out perfectly, you can just put it through the ice cream maker. And making ice cream is a great excuse to practice making custard until you can do it blindfolded.

      1. Well the recipe did call for whipping I just wrote mixing, and also for sweetened condensed milk. It ended up being kind of a soft serve.
        I am digging out my ice cream maker .
        But if I didn’t have one this was acceptable

  30. I’ve been eating lots of corn, watermelon, and tomatoes because it’s summer and they are wonderful now. And peaches. And cantaloupe. All so good. I’ve never liked salad, so I just eat the non-lettuce parts. Spring and summer vegetables make me happy.

    Today’s my birthday, but of course we have a work deadline, so I went to dinner with friends last night–delicious fancy Indian food. We were pretty well separated from other people, but the restaurant was crowded, so I hope I don’t regret it. At least I live in a heavily vaccinated area…

    1. Apparently you share the day with Mick Jagger, Helen Mirren, and Kevin Spacey . . . .

      Many happy returns of the day!

  31. What made me happy this week? Finding an exceptionally good antiques store and buying a gorgeous rock maple tea cart.

    What’s my current go-to lunch? Toasted plain bagel with a layer of veggie cream cheese topped with a big ol’ slab of heirloom tomato from the farmers market. Mmmmmm.

  32. We had a (mostly) really nice visit with the father-in-law. It was remarkably free from drama, except for a few crying jags which we both think were more for attention than anything else. We took him down yesterday to the airport and when we were at security he just shook our hands and the left. It was, well, weird, especially for him because he’s always been overly-emotional. I asked Paul if he thought that had all been a show put on for his (Paul’s) mom’s benefit and he thought it might have been.

    We even got the large planter box project mostly completed. There’s painting and a few more things to do but the bulk of it is done and Paul even suggested I paint if funky colours so it’s going to be pink and green. I am hoping to get some of the painting done tonight and then I’ll post pics on Wednesday.

    The day we built the flower box, FIL was in really good spirits and that made Paul and I both happy. He was (mostly) easy to deal with (he likes to feel “manly” and so he had to help me hold or carry boards and things but I did my bit to keep the peace and didn’t tell him I could do it myself) and only made Paul mad when he slammed the end of a 1×12 board into the window of the truck but I think that’s understandable.

    Paul also smoked a brisket so that was supper for 2 days that I wasn’t really responsible for, even if I did make the potato and macaroni salads to go with it. It was nice to have company and Paul and his dad spent some good time together, but it’s good to have our house back.

  33. Getting my phone and internet back made me really happy. Of course, the Comcast repairman blamed my outlets for the problem, even though I tried 3 different ones over the weekend, but he did replace the cable to the modem with a new one. For whatever reason, it works again and I am happy.

    I switched cell phone providers and bought a new phone and the difference is amazing!!! I put off doing this because the old service was free and this one is not, but the difference is amazing. I still don’t recognize the different tones my new phone makes, but at least I have made it to the point where if I hear a noise I don’t recognize, I check my phone first. And the debate over whether it was the phone or the carrier at fault are now moot because both of them work. Now I just have to convince people to call me again.

    1. After the discussion of robot callers and answering machines unplugged or never activated, it’s amazing to read that someone wants phone calls. 🙂

  34. I’m happy that we got our pool up! It’s still filling with water, but I’ll be able to lap-swim through the 100F days from now on and that makes me deliriously happy.

  35. Fav summer meals: watermelon with halloum cheese. Cucumber halloum pita sandwiches

  36. My family, my friends and I have (and are having) some medical issues and I made a crack that I was going to stop answering the phone because the hits just kept coming. This past Friday, I returned home to find three messages from one of my nephews, all with “call me when you receive this.” Thinking “what fresh hell is this,” I gritted my teeth, returned his call and learned that he and his wife are expecting my ninth (!!!) greatling. I almost cried with relief; it was such a blessing to hear good news and I’m over the moon and thrilled to “have” to make another baby quilt.

  37. Happiness this week has been friends getting vaccinated. The rollout has been badly mucked up down here, but some of my friends are now eligible as at risk groups, and others are choosing to take the available vaccine for which we have high supply low demand. My family don’t seem to be medically eligible for that one, so they will have to keep waiting, but all progress is worth celebrating!

  38. The Merlin bird ID app from The Cornell Lab is so much fun! Downloaded it yesterday and recorded a blue-gray gnatcatcher, a red-eyed vireo, and a downy woodpecker. Turns out, I’ve been thinking that squirrels or chipmunks were responsible for the downy woodpecker sounds. So cool . . . .

  39. I started sorting thru my comic book collection. I’m selling off the few issues I have that are worth more than I paid for them. The rest I’m bagging up to protect them. I should have done that when I bought them but I didn’t. But it’s making me happy now.

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