Category Archives: 31 Days of Casual Conversation

Hygge Weekend

Reading about the Danish concept of Hygge is one thing. Experiencing it is something else. No, I didn’t spend last weekend in Denmark. On my travel bucket list, of course.

We spent it in Arkansas.

On a trip, I dreaded. I can’t even begin to share the level of stress I had about this particular trip. We were going to Arkansas to ride ATV’s and stay in a cabin with three other couples. Never ridden on an ATV in my life until a few weeks ago. Stayed with others at the lake before but not ever with this particular set of friends.

Guess what? It all turned out okay and I ended up having a great time despite all those fears and doubts. 

Family of some of the friends led us on beautiful roads through forests and mountains (nothing like the rough roads and deep mud pits my over active imagination brought forth). We sat around a beautiful outdoor fire place each evening sharing stories and laughs. 

The television didn’t work so stayed off all weekend, most phones were used only as cameras or to check the weather report. Thankfully, the weather stayed clear with only some spotty showers the day we left.

I spent part of each morning and evening taking a short solo walk to the part of the Buffalo National River that ran behind the cabin. Thus, managing a bit of solitude, something I feared being without all weekend.

Good friends. Fantastic Food (Really amazing food, mostly. The one and only restaurant we visited fell a little short but it wasn’t awful.). Days spent exploring. Wonderful Conversation, Coffee (or other beverages), and laughter by the fire.

Cozy and content. In a word, Hygge.



One Day You Look Up and Find Yourself a Plant Person

I enjoy seeing what happens with my flower garden each spring and summer. However, I’ve never claimed to be a plant person. Indoor plants even with plant food never really worked out well for me. 

Until this year. I looked up one day and realized some how and some way, I’d become a bit of an indoor plant person. The table ledge with the east facing window is full!

Started with the peace lily from our aunt’s funeral last year. Had to take care of that one, of course.

Then along came the Shamrock plant, I’d set it outside and forgotten it. Frozen thing down to a few green leaves. Brought it back inside and now you can see it thriving in the photo above.

Passing by the flower nursery that also sells plants each time I went to the “secret” park to walk didn’t help matters. I added some indoor French lavender. And a eucalyptus plant. Then, after a grocery store visit, I found myself with some potted fresh mint from the produce section.

Although our bedroom remodel remains unfinished, I also couldn’t help myself and now that area holds a snake plant.

Wondering when exactly I became an indoor plant person. Do you do well with indoor plants?


Hot Peppers and Car Cantaloupe

What? Oh, the weird title has you wondering? Just a couple funny stories for today.

The first story starts with the peppers.

Spicing Up The Tacos

Our peppers are flourishing. I picked some a few weeks back and put in the spicy potato soup to give it a little heat. They were hot with a slight burn. Not too hot for me at all.

Another week or two passed. I picked more peppers. Chopped some up thinking I’d add them to some taco meat while preparing it for a little extra kick. J stopped in the kitchen and asked to taste one. Thought maybe I’d taste one as well.

Cue the watering eyes! So very hot. Reached for the apple cider. Husband said no, try milk. Grabbed a yogurt drink. My husband and J tolerate more heat than I generally can and they both needed something to soothe the taste buds.

Did the peppers go in the taco meat? No. What kind of peppers are they? Ghost peppers. Why did we plant ghost peppers? I have no idea.

(By the way, if handling hot peppers, using gloves while cutting them is an excellent idea. What burns the tongue tends to also burn the eyes.)

No picture for the next story…

The Car Cantaloupe

Made an unusual Monday night grocery shopping trip. Mainly to get the things my husband skips when he shops at the market place. All that wonderful aisle stuff: fruits, vegetables, dairy…basically, things to have for dinner as opposed to junk foods.

We like cantaloupe and they were on sale so I bought one on Monday night. Brought in the groceries with J’s help and put everything away. Or so I thought.

While driving to work yesterday, I thought it sounded as if something were rattling around in the trunk of the car. Perhaps the crate I keep back there was sliding. Or the first aid kit.

Heard it again on my break and while driving home. Forgot to check the trunk. G borrowed my car last night. Said nothing.

This morning and afternoon, more of the same sound. Arrived home tonight and checked the trunk. There it was: the cantaloupe! It must’ve come out of one of the shopping bags and so spent the last two days rolling around in the trunk.

What did we do with the car cantaloupe? Believe it or not, we ate it for dinner tonight. Thankfully, I discovered it before it’s demise.

Why Summer is Still My Favorite

I know many of you out there love fall. However, I remain a lover of summer.

As I watered my mums and probably the last of the summer blooms, the big reason summer brings me so much joy hit me.

It’s consistent. Fall is a time of transition.

Ask any teacher. Transition times are tough. 

I’m not denying the beauty of change. The joy of watching the butterfly emerge from its chrysalis. The gorgeous colors gracing the trees as the leaves change. The dappled sunlight across the a leaf covered lawn.

However, with that changes comes confusion. Just ask the bees. One day they’re ready to hibernate, the next the sun is shining bright again.

Today it was windy and 85 degrees. Tomorrow it’s supposed to only reach 60. Need to grab some fall clothing but don’t dare put the summer clothes away (yet). 

My flowers are confused as well. The geraniums bloomed again after giving up earlier. Probably for the last time this year. 

Winter is also consistent but too cold for me. I prefer the warm sunshine, shorts, and sandals. And easy, relaxed schedules void of holiday bustle.

Of course, I’ve learned to embrace the other seasons (did a whole 31 days series on embracing the fall season). Spring brings happiness with knowing my favorite season is soon to follow. And I try with winter, cozy blankets and hot cocoa. And of course, Christmas.

It’s just that summer soothes my spirit with its longer days and bright sunshine.

Before I end my post, tell me what’s your favorite season?


I (Heart) Mars

Saw on the news this morning, where Mars is in opposition tonight.

What’s that mean? Basically, they said that Earth is right between Mars and the Sun. Makes Mars as close to Earth as it’s going to get until 2035.

The news also reported that if you had a telescope, you’d perhaps be able to see the surface area of the planet.

Sadly, a bit too much light pollution and no telescope here. However, that didn’t stop me from trying to grab a few photos of the red planet. Fairly easy to spot as a red star in the east.

Put the old bridge camera (the one with the highest zoom) on the “moon” setting to see what I could manage.

Probably needed a tripod for true success. And a darker area. Plus, a less interested feline assistant. Or the husband not to accidentally set off the garage door motion light. Despite all that commotion, I did manage a few shots.

Thought the results while not wonderful were kind of interesting.

Lacking the tripod, I found it difficult to hold the camera steady. (Usually, I rest my elbow on my car in the driveway but my oldest borrowed it so no elbow rest for me). The unsteady image created the interesting heart shapes in the first and third photos. 

Good night, Mars.

Are you a star (planet) gazer as well?

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