Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Right now

Right now... (an occasional meme, alternating from time to time with "The Current")

May was Full Month #2 of self-isolation/sheltering in place/social distancing/quarantine/whatever you want to call it.  I have been out of the house exactly once in the 82 days since March 12 -- on April 2nd to drop off Great-Nephew's Easter goodies.  This is not counting walks around the neighbourhood, which we've been starting to do more frequently since the nicer weather (finally!!) arrived, gradually building up our time & distance. Dh has been out slightly more often -- once a week or so for groceries/prescriptions and the last few Saturdays to pick up takeout food for dinner. 

I feel like some of these answers will be repetitive from previous months, since not a lot has been going on... but here goes!  

ReadingMy COVID reading drought/slowdown continues. :( 
I read just ONE book in May (reviewed on this blog & tagged "2020 books"):  

So far this year, I've read 14 books.  I'm currently at 47% of my Goodreads 2020 Reading Challenge goal of 30 books, and (despite slacking off this month) I'm still 2 books ahead of schedule -- not as much of a cushion as I had previously, but still a bit of one. (While I've been having difficulty focusing on books right now, dh has been blazing through one after another since we've been housebound. He hasn't been keeping track of numbers, but needless to say, he's easily outdoing me!)  

Current read(s):  
  • "The Death of Expertise" by Tom Nichols. This one has been on my shelf for quite a while now... and I would say it's even more relevant today than when it was published in 2017. It's well written & I agree with the general premise. But I'm finding it a bit of a slog at the moment. I'm thinking something lighter for my next read...! 
(Very) sadly, we haven't been back to our local mega-bookstore since March 12th.  :(  Most non-mall stores were allowed to reopen (with social distancing measures in place) on May 19th, but we've been in no hurry to return...! I have, however, been buying e-books for my Kobo e-reader and Amazon Kindle phone app -- most of them older titles bought at deep discounts ($5 or less), but some recent releases too.  A few recently purchased titles:  
I mentioned in a previous post that I've been following a Facebook Readathon of "Rilla of Ingleside" by L.M. Montgomery.  We're getting towards the end of that book, and I will be sad to see the discussion end. On my D.E. Stevenson fan group, we are almost finished reading & discussing "The Baker's Daughter," one of my favourites. No decision yet on which book of hers we'll tackle next!  

WatchingI watched the last few episodes of "World on Fire" on PBS Sunday nights this past month, and now begin the wait for season 2...!  I'm also still watching and enjoying "Mrs. America" on FX (Hulu in the States). There's still two more episodes to come, I think. 

CBC's Gem streaming service has started running episodes of "Normal People," based on Sally Rooney's novel, which I read last fall -- two episodes per week for six weeks. (It's on Hulu in the States, and was on the BBC in the UK earlier this year.)  I watched the first two episodes on my laptop this weekend (can't seem to get Gem on my smart TV, at least not without jumping through a lot of hoops). The book was wonderful;  the TV adaptation (so far) is exquisite. Just beautifully done. Catch it if you can! (And now I'm thinking about following along with a re-read of the novel!) 

Listening:  Although construction on the townhouses behind our building was completed almost a year ago, work has continued, on & off, on finishing touches such as decks and landscaping. And since the advent of nicer weather, the workmen & equipment have been out in full force, starting at 7 a.m. (!) & continuing into the supper hour. Over the past few weeks, they have been planting dozens and dozens of trees around the property, and then blowing in a fresh layer of topsoil around them from a truck with a long hose. It's kind of interesting to watch, and I am grateful for all the greenery.

But yeah -- it can be NOISY!  

Following:  In reading up on "Normal People" the TV show (see above), I discovered there is an entire Instagram account devoted to Connell's chain!!  -- with 173,000 followers!! (so far!) lol  

Drinking:  Not much, since we finished off our last bottle of chardonnay! (gasp!!)(lol) Beer & liquor stores have been open throughout the pandemic as an "essential service" (!), but I have no desire to go there yet. Some of our larger supermarkets do sell beer & wine now (our archaic liquor laws have been loosened up a bit in recent years), so I might get dh to pick up a bottle or two next time he goes for groceries...  ;)  

Eating:  As I mentioned in a recent post, dh finally caved on the subject of ordering takeout for dinner a few weeks ago (not coincidentally, after he heard his brother had had rotisserie chicken from one of our favourite family chain restaurants, lol  ;)  ).  Since then, we've been ordering takeout on Saturday nights. It's not quite as much fun as going out on Saturday nights as was our custom, but it does help to make Saturdays a little more special, & gives us (me!) something to look forward to. :) We've had rotisserie chicken, wood-oven pizzas, spaghetti rapini agli e olio and a selection from our favourite Chinese buffet chain restaurant. Depending on what we order, there are often leftovers for another dinner or lunch later in the week too. 

Buying (besides books, lol):  Not much!  Most non-mall stores just started reopening (with social distancing measures in place);  I will admit I'm not in any big hurry to go to any of them.  There may possibly be a visit to the drugstore in my future soon. We also desperately need a new frying pan, as the non-stick coating on our current one is starting to come off (yuck).  We'll see...  I also just ordered some reusable cloth face masks from Old Navy, in anticipation of the day when we start venturing out more frequently. The sock masks I made are fine in a pinch, but if we start needing more, I don't want to deplete my entire sock drawer to make them, lol. I also threw a few cloth hairbands into my order. (See "Wanting," below!) 

I did buy some lovely sterling silver jewelry from my favourite crafter during her last sale, and recently received the pieces I had ordered in the mail. Now just to be able to WEAR them somewhere outside the house...!  

Wearing:  Since the advent of the warmer weather, I've been wearing my capri-length yoga pants around the house :) and even shorts for some of our walks. :)  Number of times I've worn jeans and a bra since March 12th:  ONCE (on April 2nd, for under an hour, when we went to deliver little Great-Nephew's Easter gifts). I did try on my jeans once recently, just to make sure I could still do up the zipper (happily, I could!).  ;)  

Wanting:  I will repeat my wish from last month for a HAIRCUT!! lol  It's been THIRTEEN WEEKS since our last trims on Feb. 28th (normally, we go every six weeks, like clockwork) and we are both feeling pretty shaggy.  Dh has been cutting his own hair, & so far hasn't made too much of a mess of it. ;)  I've taken to slicking back my bangs with a can of extra-strength mousse that I picked up by accident (regular usually works fine), but which has come in VERY handy. I will also sometimes add a bit of styling wax. I usually wear my hair parted on the side, but it's been hanging into my face in all kinds of weird ways, so I switched to parting it down the middle & combing it away from my face... which is slightly better, but looks like a mullet out of the 1970s. :p  Dh has offered to cut my bangs for me, but so far, I've resisted the temptation...! 

Trying:  To stay upbeat despite the barrage of recent bad news (COVID-related and otherwise), especially from south of the border.  The nicer weather & sunlight helps.  

Missing:  Little Great-Nephew. :(  (And the dog, lol.)  Aside from that brief behind-glass hello on April 2nd, we haven't seen him since March 5th -- nearly three months!!  :(   Dh wants to do another visit soon, so I am bracing myself emotionally... 

Also missing my own family -- especially since it's not looking very likely that I'll be able to travel to see them this summer. :(   Even if I was willing to fly (which I'm not keen to do yet), flights are limited right now, and even if we drove, the province where my parents live is asking out of province visitors to quarantine for 14 days upon arrival. I just don't think it would be worth it. Just crossing my fingers and hoping and praying that the situation will improve by Christmastime...!  :(  

Loving: The warmer, sunnier weather, and my freshly cleaned balcony windows/door!  

Feeling:  At the moment, COVID-19-related concerns have taken a back seat to the protests & violence happening in the U.S., and particularly in & around Minneapolis, where I have a lot of family. :(  There were even protests further north in Fargo, North Dakota, where I also have family. 

Stay safe, American friends. <3 


  1. Snap! I'm at 14 books too, but set a target of 40 so I'm two books behind schedule. It helps to know that you're not reading as much either.
    Last bottle of chardonnay! What?? Danger, Danger! lol
    Snap again! (Do you understand the reference to the card game?) I need a new frypan too, as the nonstick surface is failing.
    Yay on being able to zip up your jeans! lol
    And yes, there are lots of feels at the moment, for all those suffering under COVID-19 and systemic crimes.

    Enjoy the summer.

    1. I've heard of Snap but never played it!

    2. Wow, I thought it was the first card game children learned! I guess that's just in NZ. lol And it has entered our vernacular - I had to explain what it meant to all the Brits on messageboards too.

    3. I Googled the rules for Snap. It sounds a bit to me like another card game we used to play, War.

    4. I played a lot of Old Maid, Crazy 8s, Go Fish and War... moved up later to rummy & canasta, lol. And other games I've forgotten how to play.