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Monday, May 30, 2016

Gnite

Writing about parrot corkscrews [cute], regular corkscrews, ice cream scoops, bamboo coasters, pineapple corers and more. At my desk for hours. Ice water and music were my constant companions. More tomorrow. Good night to you. 

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Kicking off Summer in the Suburbs

I have to say this cookbook is a great read.
I've seen the Ample Hills
outpost at Gotham Market West on 11th Avenue,
but hope to head to the mother ship in Brooklyn soon.
First. a fun backyard BBQ at Fred and Jude's with live jazz by Fred, Liam and other great musicians, plus a singer, Carol [sp], who belted out "Summertime." It was beautiful. I've never heard it performed live before.

Nice cheeses, salads, birthday cake for Fred from Little Daisy Bake Shop. Our friends Anne and Michael and John and Janet were there.

Then H. and I left for the annual tiki party hosted by boot camp friend Amy and her husband, Scott. They have an authentic tiki hut!!! Good vibrations. 

Welcome, summer.

Good night.

TCOY
1. I really enjoyed the craft of making brownies from the Ample Hills Creamery cookbook to bring to the BBQ. Used fine Lindt Swiss bittersweet chocolate, European butter, sea salt, La Maison du Chocolat cacao powder. Planned to eat just one while cutting them, though it may have been two. Very good. Piled them high on my little turquoise pedestal platter and topped with a hot pink dahlia and rosebud from our garden. Punchy is a brownie lover, so I froze a few for her. I do hope to pull out my ice cream maker from the basement and try an ice cream once I have a fully working freezer, but for now, I'm fascinated with baking the creamery's mix-in recipes. I used a 9 x 13 in pan, so baking time was longer than for the shallower brownies in the book.
2. Made a superfood smoothie with coconut milk, fresh lime juice and peel, frozen banana, flaxseed. Forgot the toasted shredded coconut!
3. Important reading, and light reading.
4. Lots of ice water.
5. H. and I watched the first "Twin Peaks" episode [from the 80s] on Netflix. Nice to have time alone. Fun to revisit that show..

TGIF

Good night to you. 

TCOY
1. Breakfast w Anne & Elly at Bluestone for Elly's bday! Bluestone is Montclair's mecca for breakfast burritos, rosemary potatoes, waffles and COFFEE.
2. Hair looked horrible and greasy after that DIY deep conditioning, especially after hot shower with shower cap today. But H. and I are between checks, waiting for magazine payments. Didn't have $35 to spend on a blowout [plus tips] but remembered I had one last Moxie blowout in my pack of 5! So grateful that Nicole could fit me in at 7:15 p.m. When cash is in again, will buy another pack. You get 5 for $99, no expiration date.
3. Punchy with her grandparents for this long weekend. So nice to catch a rest.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Just Finished Writing Anthony's Book!!!!!!!!!

It took me a long time to finish Anthony's book. He is the monk-turned-business-mogul-and-family-man who hired me to write his life story. We met for coffee many times to talk. He handed over folders and files and greeting cards to me. He told me about his boyhood, his travels, some daring risks.

Sadly, he died two years ago, at age 79, before I was finished. Over that time, I have been sending chapters to his daughters for review. We will self-publish it. It will be called Fly Me to the Moon, because that's Anthony's song.

Life unfolds in funny ways. I couldn't seem to complete the book. First, I was derailed by Punch and all of her appts and needs. Then I was depressed in spurts. Then I was otherwise engaged, writing for Aspire. Or paralyzed with worry about Figgy finding her path. When I was writing about Anthony's death--he was surrounded by his family at home when he died--I relived and mourned my own good Dad's passing, by himself at the hospital in the dark of the night. [Sis, Will and I had gone home.] Anyway, the whole thing became a cycle of feeling guilty that I had not finished the book before Anthony died--and now he was watching from above--and being immobilized to park myself at the laptop and do it. Maybe a part of me didn't want to complete the writing because then I wouldn't be able to list it as a project I was working on--in case my assignments dried up.

Now, after a hiatus and a change in staff, I was recently rehired as a freelance writer for goodcook.com. But before I could really bite into that, I knew I had to finish this.

I am paid by the hour. Here are the hours I worked on it today, in between two second-grade girls going in the sprinkler and doing spa treatments in the bathroom and one husband barbecuing dinner.

4:30 to 6 p.m.
6:30 to 6:45 p.m.
7:30 to 8:30 p.m.

That is a total of 2.75 hours--of some serious writing, detailing a brave man's fight at the end of his life. Quite different from writing about can openers and spatulas.

Good night.

Gratitude.

TCOY 
1. Using Kiehl's Rare Earth Deep Pore Cleansing Masque now; luckily, the two little girls left some in my jar.
2. So much ice water.
3. Made fresh lime/toasted coconut/coconut milk/frozen banana/flaxseed superfood smoothie! Yum.
4. Corn on cob. 5. 7 a.m. support group, including meditation.


Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Hot & Scattered

Sometimes being present means stopping with Sug at the bottom of the grassy island in the center of our block, at 6 p.m., and studying the scene on our front lawn.

Punchy and Rowan in their swimsuits, running through the sprinkler, throwing a ball to each other through the water rays, laughing and calling out. The water from the yellow sprinkler swinging back and forth over the nice green lawn with rose bushes, irises and a petite peach tree.

Present, yes. But praying, too, because I have to buckle down at my desk and work on deadlines. I guess that is a way of being present, too. Observing not just fleeting moments of freedom and joy in life but also boundaries, full focus and the hard work that brings a paycheck.

Good night.

TCOY
1. Boot camp in the park.
2. Ice water.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

The Inn at Ocean's Edge!!!!!

Image from THIS LINK.
Excited; will be spending a night at the Inn at Ocean's Edge [I'll call it Ocean's Edge for short] in Lincolnville, Maine--not far from the coastal village of Camden--by myself when I drive Figgy up to Maine in early June. She's sharing a house rental and spending the summer in artsy Belfast.

I'm hoping to book a massage, requesting early check-in, planning a swim and basically savoring the idea of luxury by the sea. You know me by now, and how much I love the seaside, and the pretty places by the water's edge. I might be footsteps from the shore! I've driven by this inn--it's on Stonecoast Road, 3.5 miles from Camden Hills State Park, which I've also blogged about--for a long time. Will be writing for sure. Wish I could also get another Coastal Living assignment but my contacts there moved on, which can be challenging.

Good night.

TCOY
1. Rose early for Tonia's yoga & meditation class at 8 a.m. Excellent.
2. Worked while listening to good mix CD from Martha on my laptop.
3. Enjoyed a sweet, juicy nectarine from Whole Foods.