Sunday, March 20, 2011

Simple Joy Sunday

Celebrating some of this week's happiness..

Fresh fruit smoothies!  We got a brand new, beautiful Kitchenaid blender this week when our old crappy one started to smell like something was burning every time we used it.  (By the way: who knew blenders were so expensive?!)  It's fresh strawberry season here in our area so we've made strawberry milkshakes, but my favorite has been the fresh fruit smoothies.  So yummy!

A sudden burst of inspiration struck one morning.  I wound up putting this cute little vase of seashells & dried lavender in my beach themed sun room.
A Little Morning Creativity

I got to go to an Herb Society meeting this week.  Not only do I love those meetings (and I haven't been in so long) but I also got to see a few friends.  Along the same lines, I got to spend some time with my own herbs this week, too, which always makes me happy (I can't wait to get my raised bed herb garden!).  I'm really looking forward to my Bloody Mary Swizzle Stick Plant starting to grow!

To date, all of the shows that I have worked as a stagehand have been Broadway tours (which, of course, I love because that's what I used to do).  Some were harder than others; and some, there was simply more to do.  This week, for the first time, I was able to work something different which meant that I had more opportunities to do different things.  I had a lesson on the follow spot and focused a couple different lights than I had work with previously.  I really do enjoy learning these new things and am grateful for the opportunity to learn.

What were some of your simple joys this week?  Share below or write your own blog post (link back here & I'll do the same for you, just let me know!).  I'd love to hear!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Florida Herb Society: Oh How I've Missed You!

I finally go to go to an Herb Society meeting this month!  I haven't been since October because I keep getting scheduled to work on the night of the meeting.  I've missed seeing everyone & just being at the meeting so much!  The herb of the month is parsley, so there was all kinds of yummy foods at the tasting table & the guest speaker featured it in her healthy cooking with herbs demonstration.

Did you know that parsley is associated with death?  Apparently, the ancient Greeks placed it on corpses to control the smell.  If someone said that a person was in need of parsley, it meant that they were close to death.  Hemlock is very similar looking to Italian or flat leaf parsley and toxic, so the people of the Middles Ages preferred to use curly leaf instead so that they knew what they were eating.  The Romans would use parsley in baths for purification.  The English believed that parsley grows only for the wicked, not the just.  I find herbal folklore fascinating!

If you soak your head in a parsley tea, it will combat head lice.  Parsley is one of the top seven disease fighting herbs.  Parley tea can be used for UTI's: since it's a diuretic, it will tone the linings and purify the infection.  There really are so many more medicinal uses for this very tasty herb!

Personally, I just love using the fresh leaves in cooking (especially soups!).  You can't even come close to comparing it's flavor to dried.  Do you have any favorite parsley recipes or medicinal uses for the plant?

I also picked up a celery plant at the meeting!  One of the women there said that her husband called it a Bloody Mary swizzle stick plant.  I love that.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Simple Joy Sunday

Probably about a year ago (maybe more), I was inspired to start writing this series of blog posts by Mrs. Dragon & Cool Zebras.  I think they both may have stopped writing them, but I'd like to pick it up again.  I think it's important to notice the little things and take note of what makes you happy.

I had a fairly low key week, but here are a few things that gave me joy...

I'm really not that much of a cook.  Basically, I cook because I like to eat.  This week, I made a few tasty meals that I actually enjoyed making and even more so enjoyed eating.  I used some of my fresh herbs and infused the meals with loving intent that they taste good and provide us with nourishment & leftovers.  =)

This is going to sound nuts, but... cleaning the windows.  It's starting to get really nice out down here in Florida & it will be the rainy season before we know it so I took advantage of it and cleaned (with my homemade glass cleaner) all of the windows & French doors in the house inside & out.  The joy didn't come with the cleaning, but with the sparkling afterward.

Reorganizing & purging my workroom has been an ongoing process for the past couple of months.  This week, I tackled a closet and realized that I have more display stuff than I thought I had.  So much of it will be perfect for craft shows & markets when I get my apothecary up & running. 

I made myself a simple necklace with a leather string & pewter beads.  It's certainly nothing fancy, but it's just my style & made me happy.

I started my blog up again this week & started rejoining the forums I belong to!  It's so nice to start being social again.  I really needed that time away but I'm so glad to be back.  I've missed everyone so much!

Daydreaming off and on about my forthcoming herb garden has made me happy this week.  I've been playing with ideas of themes: a Shakespeare garden, a moonlight garden, magickal, edible, medicinal...  There are so many options!  And, honestly, I might have a little section of each.

What were some of your simple joys this week?  Comment here or if you do your own Simple Joy Sunday blog post, link back over here and let me know so I can share the link in this blog post.

Friday, March 11, 2011

My Disappearing Act

Wow, it has been way too long since I posted here and I have a lot to catch you up on!  To give you an idea of the last few months... Life was insane last year as I trained & fundraised for the 3 Day and then it took some time to get life back to normal afterward (after all of that, you kind of go into withdrawal for a little while!).  In December and January, not only was there the usual holiday craziness going on but I was also working a part time job on top of my hellish full time job (the tree was up with a topper & only one ornament).  Finally mid-January, I quit my full time job and, yes, it was a long time coming (it felt very surreal at first!).  Since then, I've continued to work my part time job as a framer at a popular craft store & I've also started working as a stagehand (which is new to me because I've always been management).  

I've been enjoying getting back to myself (it's amazing what a bad job can do to you) but also somewhat disconcerting.  I've never not had a full time job or a career that I've immersed myself into, so it has been an adjustment.  I must admit that I don't know what's next for me, but I took a big step just getting out and I'm sure I'll figure things out.  In the meantime, I'm enjoying working as a framer because I get to work with customers designing their custom order & I actually get to be crafty at work when I build the frames & assemble the orders.  Working as a stagehand has been great because it's allowing me to stay involved in theatre which is what I've done for more than a decade.  I really hate being stuck at a desk and this is far from it: I'm on my feet, working hands on building shows.  The first show I worked as a stagehand I was props but every show since then I've been an electrician.  I must admit: I'm really enjoying it.  =)

I've been spending a lot of time just getting things done around the house and also reorganizing & purging my workroom.  It's not exactly what I want it to be (that would cost more money than I can spare right now; lol)  but it's getting to a point where it's much easier to work in (and that IS the point afterall, isn't it?).   Along the same lines, I also have a little shop update...  I have some new maille that needs to be listed and new packaging!  I've also been taking steps to make the shop an armoury AND apothecary.  I must admit, my biggest stumbling block to making that happen is working on graphics, blog redesign, labels, etc.  Once I get that figured out, you can look forward to seeing soaps, salves, bulk herbs, teas, incense, and more!

We've also started tackling some house projects, too.  Among them, is dealing with our room that floods.  It hasn't been a problem since last summer, but we also haven't finished putting in a system to deal with it yet which means that all of the furniture & electronics are still in our living room (it hasn't been fun).  We have a plan in place and have taken baby steps already.  I can't wait to get going though for a few reasons.  First of all, I really can't wait to get things somewhat back to normal in the house.  Secondly, having this system in place will give both of us peace of mind.  And, last there a few yard projects that will go hand in hand with this.  One is replacing our fence; which desperately needs it.  The other, is a raised bed that Scott is going to build along the fence!  It's going to be filled with all kinds of beautiful, edible, & medicinal herbs!  There will probably be some shrubbery & flower plants in there, too, but I get a HUGE herb garden!  I haven't got a clue how to design one & I'm sure it's not going to happen overnight, but I'm really looking forward to this!!

So, it's been busy.  But I look forward to getting back into the groove of things.  I've missed it.  I hope things are going well for all of you and to hear from you!