Now I should be clear, I am not actually in quarantine, and thankfully here in BC we don’t have any sort of actual “lockdown”, despite what you might hear on the news or in comment sections. But I can’t quite come up with a better term either, so here we are. Obviously there’s still nothing happening in terms of going back to work full-time, and I remain in the same boat as millions of fellow Canadians in waiting for our economy to get back on track. But nobody wants to hear any of that nonsense, you’re here for the photos!
Soon after we last left off, I was finally (FINALLY!) able to take my car into an autobody shop to get the bumper fixed after someone backed into it over Christmas. I am incredibly glad to get this fixed and have a beautiful car again. After dropping the car off, it meant that I had a bit of a rainy walk home, but I came prepared and really enjoyed getting outside regardless of weather.
Andrea always declares what we will be having for snack at some point after dinner, so I know I never have to decide and that’s fine with me because I don’t usually care much because I love everything. Occasionally though, she has a very specific idea of what she wants, and I am happy to deliver, as shown here:
We received very exciting news in that our community garden was reopening (with restrictions of course). We were incredibly excited and I was finally able to start assembling a fence for our new (larger) plot. I had purchased all the materials back in early March but when the garden closed, we weren’t able to get in and build. It was helpful to not have the car to worry about, since I had the entire garage to work in. We loaded up our cart (which I have also been referring to as my bug-out vehicle should civilization collapse) and headed off to the garden. Andrea had to carry the bean trellis fence thing, and I am sure some people wondered what we were up to as we walked down the road!
We arrived and set to work. Andrea started weeding the plot while I started putting up the fence. It didn’t quite end up as absolutely perfect as I imagined, but at the end of the day I am proud of it and I think it looks great!
I had to go back on another day and make a gate out of a couple pieces of scrap that I had after finishing the fence, and also stealing a 2’x2′ section of extra fence from our old plot. It hasn’t been assigned to anyone yet and since we bought that fencing last year, I didn’t feel badly about it. I highly doubt whoever takes over that plot in the future wants my super crappy fence anyway, because I had no idea what I was doing when I put it up….
So my scrap gate came together decently and I didn’t have to buy any more materials, instead just using exactly what I had, broken wood and all! Maybe I’ll remake it in the future, but for now I’m happy.
Here’s the finished product with everything planted (thanks to Andrea for all the weeding and planting!)
My next two photos are some random food moments. I pressed 3 blocks of tofu in the mightiest tofu pressing tower I have ever built. Was this entirely necessary? No. But it was fun.
Then I tried out a new recipe for some sugar free chocolate peanut butter lava cakes. They required some interesting care and I found it best to get on the floor and stare at them like I was on The Great British Bake Off.
We finally got the laundry room completely done, with the addition of a shelf and clothes rod. We are both very grateful to Andrea’s dad for his help in making this room look spectacular. Check out Andrea’s more detailed post!
I discovered an amazingly simple and delicious Cinnamon Kettle Corn recipe that I think we will always have on hand when we finally start up our monthly open houses. It was soooooo good and I can’t wait to make it for you all.
We also finally had to do some grocery shopping, and so we braved a Costco trip, sitting in line for two hours. It was a pretty chilly morning, but we had fun getting out and were so glad to be buying food again that we may have spent too much money, but whatever. We really love our food, and it’s always worth it. A life without good food is no life at all.
Speaking of good food, my project this month was to make pizza dough from scratch, and let me tell you, I nailed it. I found a great recipe here, and it was flawless. I know there will be times when I make this for friends on game night or something as well. It was so great.
We also made two trips over two weeks to Duft & Co Bakehouse in Abbotsford. We have always wanted to try their products, but they always sell out before we can manage to get there! Now that they are doing preorders, we have been able to make a couple orders and try out lots of different things. I highly recommend everything so far! Beware though, their last preorder box sold out 300 boxes in under 4 minutes!!
My next picture here is an open faced roasted brown sugar apple, brie, and arugula baguette with raspberry balsamic drizzle. This is an example of the types of lunches I get to make for Andrea and I, and I really enjoy being able to spend more time on making nice fancy (yet easy!) lunches.
On each of our trips to Duft & Co, we also took the opportunity to visit Devan Greenhouses, picking up some plants for the house. Andrea absolutely loves plants, and I know it’s one of the ways she is coping with being constantly at home. I was happy to help her pick out new houseplants, and while we were there she also was incredibly excited to feed the baby goats!
Random: Did you know you can buy bees and praying mantis’?!?!?!? I sure didn’t. I mean, I knew you could get this sort of thing, but I didn’t think they were so easily available! I resisted the urge to buy a mantis as a pet…
On one of those trips to the greenhouse, we picked up some herbs and they needed somewhere to go, so I got out my few tools and set to work taking apart a shelf that we had, and repurposing it into an herb planter! I needed a saw at one point and I don’t have an actual woodworking saw, but I do have a branch saw for pruning and trimming, so I used that. It got the job done, and made me proud that I can problem solve and create things without spending money.
Now, Andrea still hasn’t let me cut her hair, but we did embark on a new adventure of dying it! I didn’t have gloves, so I had to put ziploc bags on my hands to work the dye in. It was really really fun, and I enjoyed being able to help her do something she had never done before. It didn’t last very long as it was a natural dye, but we are both confident and excited to try it again, and with different colours as well!
Another thing we are doing is exploring a fancy cocktail once a week. This one is a Punch Romaine, which is a drink served on the Titanic in 1st Class. I really enjoy expanding my drink repertoire, which is honestly quite minimal. Having a fancy drink really makes us feel like we are going out for dinner, which is nice to break up the normal.
I also am discovering new unique recipes like miso-glazed eggplant & quinoa. Kind of a crappy picture, but I loved it and wanted to share!
We went to Snowy Village, which is one of our favourite dessert places, and picked up a Bingsoo to go. It’s a Korean shaved ice type dessert which is super delicious. It’s pretty close to home, so we raced home and sat outside in the backyard enjoying our special snack and the beautiful sunshine. I encourage you to do the same type of thing! Find something you love and enjoy it as best as you can, in whatever nature you can access. It really helps feel like life is not so bad!
And finally, the explanation on my featured image. Andrea has started doing a month long yoga series, and one day a week or so it’s blanket yoga. I am terrible at yoga, but if you tell me it’s blanket yoga, I feel more confident that I can take part and be involved! So when Andrea asked, I decided to be adventurous and give it a go.
Speaking of being adventurous, I have also enrolled in an online Social Psychology course through Harvard’s online education system. It seems like the perfect time to learn new things and try things that interest me that I have never had the opportunity to try. I love social psychology. It fascinates me, and it speaks to me.
If I can leave you with one thought for today, it’s to take the opportunity to try something new, and learn something. Improve yourself in some way, because you never know when it’ll come in handy.
I still suck at yoga, but at least I try.