After too many long months, I finally got to see Felicity and Purple in person. Granted, we were all masked up and hung out outdoors off and on in the rain, but it was still in person. And that made my heart so happy.
Felicity also brought the kiddo a bunch of snacks back from a trip to Malaysia, and he was thrilled to have more durian sweets to eat. He may only enjoy eating carrots, corn on the cob, Caesar salad and black garlic right now when it comes to veggies, but he does like the taste of durian. Go figure.
Friday’s Frugal Five
1. I completed my five fully vegan days (also: no alcohol, refined sugar, or grains). I then went on to have two more vegetarian days with very limited dairy, so more almost-vegan eating. I broke my streak on Thursday with a delicious work barbecue, but I think this experiment has made me realize how many meals I can do vegan/vegetarian even if the rest of the household isn’t doing the same.
(Our company is small and the barbecue was outside and social distanced, but it was nice to “hang out” with everyone in real life).
2. We picked a ton of berries out of the garden this week, more than we can eat fresh ourselves, which meant they went into jam. We made raspberry jam one night and strawberry rhubarb the following. Instead of making big batches like I initially did when I started to learn how to can, I’ve gotten better at doing just 2-6 half pints at a time – and then we actually eat everything that gets canned.
The recipes came out of two of my favorite canning books: Canning For a New Generation and Tart and Sweet. Their recipes are automatically adjusted to small batches, which also helps me not get in over my head on a weeknight with way too many jars to fill. I don’t use cookbooks very often otherwise, but for whatever reason I love the physical ones when it comes to canning.
3. We haven’t had full on summer weather here yet, so we often have mornings indoors in the low sixties since the furnace is still off. On the warmer afternoons, it’s gotten up into the mid seventies, which feels too warm, but livable.
I’d love to not put in the window AC units this summer, but once it gets into the eighties by the end of the day, we cave and turn them on. That said, the weather report looks like we aren’t going to be there yet, so I’m appreciating the particularly low utility bills right now.
4. Since I only go into the office a couple days a week, I haven’t been wearing my more “professional” clothing other than a nicer shirt for Zoom calls. I have plenty of casual clothes/shoes, so quarantine/work from home time is making this continued clothes buying ban easy.
That said, we’re now into July, so I’ve ticked off another month of the ban. Three years, four months, and counting. Is four years actually possible thanks to COVID? Maybe.
5. I got a new phone after 4.5 years. I’ve limped my iPhone SE along for the last year, especially the last few months, but I wanted to hold off at least until the SE2 launched. It was released a few months ago, and my old phone was really starting to have bigger problems, so I decided it was finally time to make the switch.
Our phones are through a Verizon work account, so there is generally a rolling two year upgrade available for use, which meant that I was able to get the phone for 99¢ plus an extended two year contract (which would be in place regardless). They also paid me $13 to take my old phone back to refurbish, so you could say they paid me $12 to upgrade. I did, of course, buy a new Lifeproof case; thanks to the one on my old phone, the Verizon associate was impressed by the fact my old phone didn’t have a single scratch on it.
We did a ton of walking on Saturday when we met up with Purple and Felicity, including some steep Seattle hills, and I ended the day with over 20,000 steps. We followed up Sunday with a walk down to the breweries at the bottom of the hill, which meant a 6+ mile round trip and a 23,000 step day.
I also ran Friday, Monday, and Tuesday, with the kiddo joining me the first two days (I also ran separately on Monday). What I haven’t been so great with lately is yoga; I’m still doing some stretching daily, but I need to get back to real routines.
Are you seeing anyone outside of your household these days? How are you balancing safety vs sanity?
Ps. wear a mask.