Saturday, August 12, 2023

A summer Saturday with gnomes

Someone we know picked up two dollar store gnomes this spring and has been surprising people with them ever since. This week they ended up at our house and I'm embarrassed to say it took me half the day to notice. I mean, how could I have missed them?

No idea how long they'll be here before they surprise the next friend, but they're welcome to stay for a bit.


I have had a tech-heavy week. I'd been invited to write an essay about how I approached the first two pages of my short story, 'The Canadians', in the anthology launching at the end of this month, and it was exciting to see that post go up. You can read it here, if you're interested in that sort of thing and/or want a sneak peek.

The next day I attended a seminar about website design, and realized it was time to update mine. Nothing too fussy, just a quick do-over.


Turns out the software I use has gone glitchy, severely limiting what one can do, but I didn't realize that till the original site was gone. Took me three days (not exaggerating - it was pretty much full on from the time I got up till I fell into bed again) to trick the program into letting me include images in the replacement. Even then, the final result isn't exactly a dreamboat. But it'll do. You can check that out too if you like - the link for that is here.


Before I became one with my keyboard and mouse and a persistent migraine, earlier in the week when there was time for a midday walk outing, I saw a turkey! That's normal in the countryside but not so much here in Toronto. 

It happened in our lush ravine system... this friendly turkey strolled out from the foliage at the edge of the path and then carried on alongside me, companionably keeping pace as it foraged for berries. 


Now I am in recovery mode from all website chaos, which is how Saturdays should be spent and seldom are, at least by me. I am treating myself to a big read of Lockwood & Co. books - these are middle grade / YA stories with ghosts, meaning I don't fall remotely into the target market, but Jonathan Stroud's writing is pure luxury and I am grateful to have enough free time to indulge myself properly. 

Weirdly, Netflix picked up this series and then cancelled the show after the first season. Which is maddening because they'd done an excellent job with it and I was excited to see more. More fools them is all I can say, pulling my nose briefly away from my kobo screen to do so. Hopefully they keep that first season up long enough to lure more out-of-target-market readers into the books.


Turkeys and reading jags and gnomes aside, I know it is officially summer here at Hugs, because Pete has harvested his first tomato, a tiny Roma:

He is amazing with our garden, out there all the time weeding and watering. Puts me to shame and I definitely want to get out there and start helping him, or at least painting the deck railings again... but later, after I've read a little more. Maybe that's a scenario where I should be using audiobooks?


A few weeks ago when I noticed I was still drinking tea from Christmas mugs because both of my summertime favourites lost patches of enamel last fall, I treated myself to two new ones, including this cutie:

Gotta have a good cuppa tea when you're reading a book set in London.

The other mug has fun illustrations of landmark sites in Paris, London, and other aspirational travel destinations. I wasn't feeling the travel bug today so stayathome flowers it is.

Recently, New York Times Cooking featured a radish sandwich. You may or may not know about my great love of sandwiches. Since the comments section was full of people describing this as the best thing to happen to sandwiches since they first sprang into being, naturally I had to give it a try. 

My review: basically a butter vehicle. So I found myself eating the rest of the bag of radishes for snacks and found them beyond ideal. No peeling required, as with carrots, and no incentive to overindulge, as with everything else. They're crunchy and the heat puts you off snacking for a good while afterward.

So, once again, New York Times Cooking to the rescue! 

Okay I say this but I think I've only cooked maybe three things from that section since I started subscribing. I love reading the comments and get a ton of tips from them, which is worth it to me. What I really love is the educational videos on Bon Appetit. I don't actually cook fancy, and this summer I've been able to avoid cooking almost entirely thanks to the miracle of Salad (and also, Sandwiches) but I do enjoy learning, and food often looks so beautiful.

And now I think that is quite enough from me - you have fun things to do with your day too I hope. See you next Saturday, and thanks for checking in!

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