Wednesday, January 23, 2013

What I've Been Up To

Hello friends. I'm just checking in to let you know what I've been up to.  Here goes.

Did you know that my husband has been in Edinburgh since January 2nd doing research for his book?  Did you know that we are planning on going to a Robbie Burns dinner (Scotland's favourite poet) on January 24th just hours after Jonathan gets back from Edinburgh?  Fingers crossed that he isn't overcome with jet lag so we can go.  Anyway, in honour of both of those Scottish events I have been dressing our bed in some plaid pillow cases I got last year at the thrift shop.  I got two that match and one single one so I just wrapped it around a throw pillow - simple and it makes me happy.

I've also been working on a photo book of our son's wedding - yep the son that got married a year-and-a-half ago.  I had never got around to making a book or printing off any photos so I put it on my New Year's resolution list for this year to motivate me.  Here's a screen shot of how I'm doing.  I'm trying to decide if words like 'The Reception' are a good addition or not.  Have you ever made a photo book?  I have used Kodak in the past, but this is my first time using Shutterfly and there are a lot of options for backgrounds and stickers and things that make it fun somewhat overwhelming.  I set myself a goal of finishing the book by the time Jonathan gets back from Edinburgh and it is basically done and ready for final edits so I'm right on track.

And I've booked airline tickets, hotel, and bought opera tickets for New York for the March Break.  We take each of our children to New York city when they are finished high school as a fun way to have a special time together with them.  Since Jonathan has used up all his holiday time, I get to take William to New York.  Then it occurred to us that my parents had never been to New York City so we invited them to go as well.  The four of us will be in New York during the last part of the March Break - can't wait!

And did you know that I've been enjoying a beautiful photograph taken by my friend Kat from Low Tide High Style Art.  She gave me the photo for some help I gave her setting up her online shop.  Thanks so much Kat.  We love it!  I have it hanging in the dining room right now and am enjoying how the blue colour of the door looks so pretty with the pink flowers that my mother left me when they went to Florida.  I'm going to do a better post (and take better non-backlit photos) when I include the photo in the gallery wall-to-be.

And I've been feasting every weekend on the best lunch EVER!  Malcolm made me some raisin bread for Christmas (which tastes so delicious).

Which I toast and slather with peanut butter and a smidge of honey (okay, maybe a bit more than a smidge).

And drink with the world's best hot chocolate.  Here's how I make it - microwave a cup full of milk on high for two minutes and then stir in one heaping tablespoonful of the hot chocolate mix (they say to use four, but I find one tastes great and has fewer calories) and stir, stir, stir.

And before you know it you are left with this.

And finally, I'm working on decluttering and sorting out the house (aren't we all?). I tidied up my desk as the first step to organizing myself.  As my desk goes, so goes my state of being ... and i'm hoping for a calm, happy, organized state of being.  So far I've kept it tidy. I'm also going to aim to get rid of 365 things this year.  I have a couple of bags of things waiting to go to the thrift store so I'm on my way.

Anyway, that's it for now. I'll be back in a day or so with a post about one of the yummiest country food we have cooked so far - Israel. Did you catch Egypt's meal because it was pretty darn good too.
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  1. I love the tartan, and how great that your husband is working on another book and gets to visit Edinburgh...though I imagine it's quite chilly there at the moment! My sister and her husband go to a Robert Burns party each year and my brother in law even dons his kilt for the occasion!

    I've never made a photo book, but yours looks like it's coming along beautifully! And a trip to NYC is always fun, having your parents there will be wonderful too.

    Thanks so much for the shout out, and I'm very humbled to have one of my images hanging on your wall!!! You have been a great blogging friend since the very beginning, and your help has been invaluable...thank you!

    xo Kat

  2. Well, you have been such a busy girl! I think your photo book looks amazing and I like the word "Reception" because it gives the viewer a narrative to know what parts of the wedding they are looking at. I need to clean & organize my desk as well. THat is my project for January! The new picture is lovely! Love the colours! And there is nothing better than toast with hot choc! Have a lovely weekend! Angie xo

  3. Grace - I really enjoyed your post today. I'm guessing your hubby or you or both are Scottish? I am as well. My Grandparents were born in Edinburgh and then moved to Brechan. What kind of a book is your husband working on? Also, I used the same cocoa in some chocolate mousse. Yum!

  4. Edinburgh is my favorite European city. I would love to go to a Robert Burns dinner. How much fun! I love that photo. It is gorgeous! What a sweet friend you have. Thanks for the tip about the hot chocolate. I tried it and it was so rich I couldn't drink it! I'll try on ly using one tablespoon this afternoon. We received some in a Christmas gift basket!


  5. Wow. Lots going on! So happy for your husband and the book. I too adore toast and peanut butter. Almost every day my lunch is an english muffin with peanut butter and jelly. I've gained a few lbs. though so I may have to switch back to cottage cheese. :o( Stay warm.

  6. I love all things Scotland! It's at the top of my list for places to go one day.

    I'm also a huge fan of peanut butter and honey. So. Good.

  7. It all looks and sounds delicious! Tartan, chocolate, raisin bread and Scotland are all favorites of mine!