Weekly Wonders #7

Weekly Wonders #7

Another week, another post talking about the highlights.

Paddling Pool Fun

Got Naomi another new toy, which will hopefully be in use for years. This inflatable paddling pool/ball pit. Naomi likes to chill in their and bring in all her friends. This includes stuffed toys and her baby.

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We also put in water the other day and let her have a splash around in the warm sunroom.

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Ensaymada

I followed this recipe as well as I could. I’ve never worked with yeast before so I was worried it wouldn’t rise well,  but it did! The end result was delicious and quite filling. I might make mini  versions next time. I’ll probably make this a full post to share later in the week cause I’m really proud with how they came out!

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Walks

Still love to get out when we can and get that fresh air. This morning I took photos in was a little chilly as we had just had a cold snap that past day.

Selfies

One of Naomi’s favourite things to play with is the selfie mode on my phone. I like to hit record and see what she does. I’m always adding these on Instagram. Also, it’s just fun to stop and take a selfie.

Keeping Busy

Again, still playing lots of animal crossing. I’ve given in and decided to also get a switch cause the new horizons game is just calling me. This lockdown has caused me to spend more money than is probably wise, but I’m thinking of it as an investment.

Also been squeezing in daily yoga still and occasionally cross stitching.

Feels like all my spare time has been taken up lately. But I’ve still been able to do lots of fun stuff so I’m happy.

What have you guys been up to this past week?

Angela.

Weekly Wonders #6

Weekly Wonders #6

Another week has passed us by. I haven’t been taking as many photos or going outside as much, as the weather has been getting a bit gloomier. Also, the sun has been setting earlier so our days are feeling shorter.

Baking

I didn’t bake as much this week. I wanted to try bread, but I couldn’t find any yeast at the store. So I tried some different baked goods I hadn’t made before. Chocolate brownies and russian fudge. Both came out really well!

A New Toy

I ordered a toy kitchen for Naomi and it arrived this week. We have a similar one at daycare and she loves it, so I thought it would be nice if we had one at home. She’s been having lots of fun with it.

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Animal Crossing: New Leaf

Pictured on the left here is where I’ve been spending a lot of my time. Sitting on the couch playing Animal Crossing. It’s been a lot of fun, and I keep on expanding my house.

Tattoo Craving

This was a weird title for this section, but it was all I could think of. I got my last tattoo in December 2017. It’s a small delicate flower on my left wrist. In July of that same year, I got my favourite tattoo, this shoulder mandala. I had actually made a booking to get a new tattoo a few weeks back, but what with the current situation, we had to reschedule. It’s now for the end of this month, and I’m hoping we’ll be able to stick with it but who knows?

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That’s all that happened for this week. I haven’t been spending too much time on social media, so I’m really behind on reading everyone’s posts. I’m still doing yoga videos everyday, working from home when I can, reading a little and just riding this out. Hope you guys are all doing well.

Angela.

Weekly Wonders #5

Weekly Wonders #5

Back for another recap of what went down this past week. Not a whole lot really. Spent most of it playing Animal Crossing. I’m so hooked.

Animal Crossing New Leaf

 

Like I said, this is most of what I’ve been doing. I don’t have any photos to share, so I’ve attached some of the ones I’ve sent to my sister, along with my strange grammar. I’m having so much fun being mayor, shaking trees, fishing, planting, catching bugs and trying to figure out this turnip business.

Food

To the surprise of no one, I’ve been doing more baking. Once I run out of one batch, I make another. I may have a problem. Made Anzac biscuits, and more hokey pokey biscuits. I’m also thinking of making a feijoa cake down the line cause we have heaps.

Outside Time

Despite my game addiction, we still also get outside most days. This past week had lots of nicer days, so we took advantage and headed out. Even if it’s just in the backyard. Fresh air does wonders for clearing your head.

Getting Creative

I made homemade paint. It’s basically equal parts flour salt and water. Then add food colouring. Since Naomi is 1, she basically ate it straight away. It may be the saltiest thing she ever ate as she immediately started spitting everywhere then crying. She did this multiple times before we gave up on the endeavour.

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I’ve always liked trying origami. Half the time it works, the other half I give up. I found a youtube clip to make an origami lotus and decided to give it a go. I’m pretty happy with how it came out!

Keeping Busy

As always we stay at home unless we’re out for walks, or I go to the supermarket for our weekly shop. Naomi now loves playing with the camera on my phone. I find it hilarious to hit record to see what she does. I share a lot of these on Instagram now. Even though Naomi comes with me at work, it’s nice being able to have so much one on one time with her during this lockdown.

Slower progress on my cross stitch. You can see more flowers appearing around. I want to do more on it, but I keep getting distracted.

Another two weeks of mostly being at home. But restrictions around takeaways and online shopping are mostly back to normal, so I’m excited for that. Hopefully NZ can continue keeping our numbers low and we can slowly get back to ‘normal’. Till then, we’ll just hang at home.

Stay safe all.

Angela.

Weekly Wonders #4

Weekly Wonders #4

I’ve been keeping myself busy with games heaps this week, which means I haven’t been blogging much again. But, it has been nice to step away a bit. Anyway, here’s some highlights of our past week during the lockdown.

Food

As always, I’ve been doing more baking. This week I made Apple Cinnamon Muffins, Lemon Slices, and scones. I am going through so much flour. I also made Dalgona coffee lots more times as well. I’m still very addicted to it.

Cross Stitch

I’m unable to finish my previous cross stitch project as I’m out of thread and can’t get any more until the lockdown is over. So I started one of my new ones. I’ve made pretty good progress in a week.

Hanging Out

We still went out for walks when we could, but the weather wasn’t the best this past week. So we mostly all hung out inside.

Keeping Busy

So Rory dug out his old Nintendo 3DS for me, as I was playing an old Pokemon game on an emulator on my phone. That kept me busy for a bit, then I realised that I could get an older version of the Animal Crossing game on it via the e-Shop. So now, I’ve been doing that non stop and I literally have to be pulled away from it. It’s somewhat taken over my life. In other news, New Zealand may be leaving our lockdown in the next few days. We’re not sure yet, but there’ll be an official announcement sometime today. It’ll be interesting to see how it all plays out.

That’s all for my past week. How was yours?

Angela.

Board Games We Have

Board Games We Have

Another random mid week post. So I don’t actually play much of our physical board games anymore. Even before the lockdown, I began playing more games online. Including tabletop simulator on steam, where you can actually play board games online with your friends. It’s a lot of fun. But  I still also love the physical games that we have too. So I thought I’d share the ones Rory and I own.

Scrabble

Everyone has played scrabble right? I don’t think I need to explain how the game works, but basically you make words out of the tiles that you have. We have a travel version that was given by a family member who never uses it. It’s quite handy too, as the tiles actually clip into the board. So if someone accidentally knocks the table, they all stay there.

The Game of Life

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Another classic board game, but perhaps not one everyone has played. I didn’t play this one growing up, but Rory did. You pretty much are a little peg in a car, going through the typical milestones of adult life until retirement. I played it for the first time with him and his family, back in our very early dating days. I liked it, and decided to get Rory his own copy for his birthday. It’s fun to play, and since we’ve had it for the longest, I have lots of memories attached to it. Like Rory getting fired three times in a single game. It was hilarious.

Machi Koro

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Now we get more into the lesser known ones. I spotted this in a shop, and was immediately drawn to the art style. It looked cute, and there was a town. I didn’t get it there and then. But slowly I looked more into it, and kept umming and ahhing about it. You are a mayor, and you have to build a town before the other mayors (players) is the gist of the game. Eventually, Rory got it for me one birthday and we’ve played it a few times. It took me a while to wrap my head around, but it’s pretty fun. I have never won a single game against Rory, he’s always been a better strategist.

Pandemic

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This is another birthday present from Rory. We like games. I had played this with a friend before, and I liked that it’s a co-op. Everyone needs to work together to find the cures and save humanity before it’s too late. Also, it’s kind of funny to mention this game now, given everyone’s current situation. But anyway, this game is fairly complicated, if you’re not into these big strategy games. We tried to bring in some family to play it one Christmas, and everyone was real confused. Anyway, it’s mostly fun to play, sometimes a little stressful.

Settlers of Catan

This was a christmas present I gave Rory. I just realized that all the board games we have were gifted which is pretty neat. This is also the only game you can not play with only 2 people, so we haven’t really been able to play it as much. Which is a shame, cause it’s a lot of fun! You are settlers, competing for resources and trying to build your settlement better and faster than the others. The photos I’m using for this one are from Christmas a few years back where we all played it. We did multiple games over a few days, and it got a little competitive which was hilarious. No bad feelings from anyone in the end though!

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So if you’re interested in any of these games, I’ve linked to their wiki page where you can have a better look at how the game works and looks. I do recommend all the ones I have, as they’re all fun! What kind of board games do you guys have? Or what have you been playing during the lockdown?

Angela.

Weekly Wonders #3

Weekly Wonders #3

Another week in and what we got up to.

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Food

Starting off with lemon cake. It’s really light and zingy, plus we ran out of coffee cake and I wanted more cake.

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Made hokey pokey cookies once the lemon cake run out. I’ve made this recipe since I was little, and they’re really easy and nice cookies. Not too sweet, but quite fluffy and a nice cookie to have with a drink, you know?

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Extra things including french toast with blueberries, and multiple dalgona coffees. I’m so addicted.

Hanging out with Naomi

I’ve ordered some more things for Naomi to help entertain her at home. This includes this activity cube, fox xylophone and a walker with lots of things for her to grab and pull. She’s been loving using it to help her walk and keep her balance around the house.

Also got her some new pink shoes as her soft sole blue ducky shoes are slowly getting worn out.

We also tried some gloop. She spilled it all over the sun room but it kept her entertained, and gloop isn’t really that hard to tidy up.

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Outside Time

Went a bit further out for a walk, by that I mean we went to the end of our street to the park there.

Also spent lots of time in our backyard again.

Keeping Busy

As always, I did some cross stitching, read, watched You Tube, cleaned, and kept up with stuff for work.

I also messed around with my DSLR camera a little. I was outside with Naomi and Shadow and tried taking some close up/portrait style shots of them.

Since Easter is coming, I tried my hand at a few arts and crafts, and also made a whole blog post about it.

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What did you guys get up to this week?

Angela.

 

Weekly Wonders #2

Weekly Wonders #2

Another week of mostly being inside.

Hanging in our backyard

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We try to go out for walks, but Naomi hates being restrained in her buggy. So instead, we set her free outside. She loves going out. She’ll point at her shoes then start heading to the door. She’s starting to stand more and more which is pretty exciting!

More Baking

Made some apple crumble but didn’t take any pictures.

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Chocolate chip cookies, using a different recipe which made them more softer and chewier.

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Coffee cake, using a really easy and simple recipe I found online.

30 Days of Songs Challenge

I saw an old blogging friend Jasmin post this on her story. I don’t know if she’s still doing it, but I thought it sounded fun, and for no reason, I’m keeping up with it.

Here are the songs I’ve done for each day so far.

Day 1 – A song you like with a colour in the title

Self-explanatory. I was going back and forth between this and that blue da ba dee song. But I like Lorde better.

Day 2 – A song you like with a number in the title

Again, self-explanatory. There are a million songs with a number in the title, but I was listening to this most recently so it was fresh in my head.

Day 3 – A song that reminds you of summertime

This song was a big summer hit in 2016 I think. And it has just stuck with me, it’s so damn catchy. Who doesn’t sing along to the whole chorus??

Day 4 – A song that reminds you of someone you’d rather forget

I couldn’t think of a person that I’d want to forget. So I spun this prompt and thought of 10 year old me and my friends doing a choreographed dance routine we made up to this song…in front of the whole school. I’ve blacked out most of the memory, but I still cringe about it.

Day 5 – A song that needs to be played loud

I have loved this song since it first released. I have also got Naomi hooked on it which is great. This has to be played loud, because I like to sing along with it but I do not have Idina’s range, so if it’s loud enough, I can’t hear my voice crack.

Staying Social while Distancing

Had our first zoom work meeting last monday. That was nice to see everyone. Also called a few of the families from work, just to catch up and see how they were doing.

Skyped with a few friends I hadn’t seen in a while. We sometimes don’t talk for ages cause we all get busy with life, so what perfect time than now to catch up.

Played games online with my siblings, and had our weekly skype catch up with the parents too.

Keeping Busy

More of the weekly cleaning, as things get messier faster since we’re home all the time.

Have managed to keep up with my 30 days of yoga still which is good!

Tried that whipped coffee thing that’s been circulating online. The first time, I mixed it just for a while so it didn’t really work. The second time I used my electric beater for around 10 minutes and it worked really nice. It tastes like a really sweet coffee which I prefer.

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Went out to do the weekly grocery shop as Rory went last week. I haven’t been since all the new precautions have been put in place. They only allow a certain number of  people in at once,  so there’s a line outside. They have cones set out that you stand next to, so we keep our distance. Also inside, there’s lots of signs about limits on products, reminders to wash your hands and all that. It was really nice to get out and drive to the store I have to say. I miss the daily drives to and from work, and just the daily grind in general.

Making progress this past week on my big cross stitch project that I’ve been doing for over 2 years now.

Playing games, reading books and occasionally fretting about the reality of our current situation.

What have you guys been up to this past week?

Angela.

Weekly Wonders #1

Weekly Wonders #1

I was trying to make a clever title to sum up what we got up to this week, and this is the best I could come up with.

As most people in the world, we are currently on lockdown. New Zealand will be on lockdown for at least four weeks, then see how the situation has progressed. So that’s at least a month where I will hopefully be able to come back into blogging. The aim is at least twice a week, but who knows?

So this past week has been okay. Just feels like we took some leave off work and are hanging out at home. The only difference is, if it was just a holiday, we’d probably head out to the shops and parks at some point. Although, I’m still working a little as we have an online platform that we’re using to keep connecting with the kids and their families.

Here’s some highlights of the past week. Or ‘wonders’ to keep it in line with the title.

Chocolate Cupcakes

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So I was originally going to make a chocolate cake to bring into my work to celebrate Naomi’s birthday last weekend with the kids…but that didn’t happen. So instead, I made a bunch of cupcakes using this recipe from Nerdy Nummies. I also added the wafer daisies which I got to be on the cake. I love this recipe, the cupcakes are so light and airy, and with vanilla buttercream on top, it’s just so good. We three, demolished them.

Mini Fort

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As part of my job, we post videos and activities that the kids can do at home. I was brainstorming ideas and thought of blanket forts. We decided to make a mini one in the living room and see if Naomi would like it. She did…for around a few minutes before deciding she’d rather play elsewhere. Still, I count it as a win.

Staying Connected

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Good old Skype. It’s awesome that we have so much ways to keep in contact through online means. I caught up with my family, and Naomi enjoyed seeing everyone’s faces and hearing their voices. I’ve also been messaging people on Facebook, Whats App and Insta just to keep seeing how everyone is.

Keeping Busy

I’ve been staying on top of cleaning, I like to spread it out everyday. I used to try do everything on a weekend day, but now I got more time.

I have started a 30 Days of Yoga with YWA. I’ve been doing with keeping up with it. On top of that, I try do occasional other workouts too.

When we can we go for quick walks outside. It has to be quick cause we’re carrying Naomi. Why don’t we bring her in the buggy you say? Because she hates being restained and just screams at us when we put her in it, that’s why. She enjoys being outside. She likes touching leaves and trees.

Also, I’ve been doing my best to keep up with blogging. Reading posts, planning content and such.

Finally, I’ve also been reading, cross stitching, playing some games, and obviously hanging with Rory and Naomi.

What have you been up to this past week?

Angela.

Books I’ve Read Recently

I have been reading a lot this year. I didn’t read as much as I set for my reading challenge the past 2 years. So I decided this year to try get to 30 books. Well, so far I’ve read over 20 books so I’m well on track! I’m considering raising my goal to 50 books since I’m so proud of how well I’m doing.

I wanted to share some of the books I’ve read so far, and also, since we will be spending lots of time inside, wanted to recommend books to read, as well as get any recommendations you may have.

State of the Union by Nick Hornby

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So I randomly decided to borrow this because I had no idea what to expect. Basically, it’s like you’re just a fly on the wall eavesdropping on a struggling married couple’s weekly conversation. Each chapter takes place in a few minutes at a bar, just before the couple’s therapy session. You hear nothing of the session itself, or before it. You just drop in on them each week and get snippets of how their lives, and the therapy sessions are going. It may not be for everyone, but I couldn’t put it down!

The Planets by Brian Cox and Andrew Cohen

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I am fascinated by space, especially with all our friends in the solar system. This book was published in 2018 and has the most up-to-date information about all the planets. It’s also filled with so many pretty pictures, and is a companion piece to the BBC series about it (which I need to watch). So if you have any interest in space and planets, definitely pick this up.

The Boy Who Followed His Father into Auschwitz (A True Story) by Jeremy Dronfield

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I’ve read my fair share of biographies and memoirs, but the ones that intrigue me the most are stories like this. Stories of everyday people going through something I could never imagine. It took me a while to read this, cause I had to keep putting it down and find something more light-hearted to do. Definitely worthwhile to read.

Nanaville: Adventures in Grandparenting by Anna Quindlen

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Another book I just randomly borrowed because I liked the cover. I work with kids, and I have a baby. This book is about becoming a grandparent, something I can’t quite relate to, but it’s fun to read the perspective. It’s full of little stories and anecdotes, and it’s just super cute. I breezed through this, and still occasionally pick it up.

The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt and illustrated by Oliver Jeffers

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I read a lots of kids books, again for work, and for Naomi. This one just stuck out to me, I’d heard of it but hadn’t read it. It’s so cute. Basically, each colour in the crayon box are on strike for one reason or another. I loved it. I want to buy a copy for home, but it’s only paperback and I think I’ll wait till Naomi knows now to rip paper.

A Court of Thorns and Roses, A Court of Mist and Fury, A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

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This was recommended to me from Reddit, I think it was the books subreddit. They recommended it as a good fantasy series. I really enjoyed the first one, I absolutely loved the second one, and the third one was also a lot of fun. There’s been a fourth one called “A Court of Frost and Starlight”, it’s a bit shorter and nothing really happens. You do get to hear the story from the point of view of side characters which is nice. It feels like an epilogue for the main characters, and sets up the last book which is about a few of the side characters I think. I couldn’t put any of these ones down, I read them in a matter of days. It’s about a human called Feyre and how she gets involved with the world of faeries and all the courts. I’ll leave it at that, but if you’re into Young Adult Fantasy series, I really recommend these.

Red, White and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

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I heard a lot about this book. I knew nothing about it and went in blind. It’s about the relationship that forms between the son of the President of the US and the Prince of Wales. I don’t know what it was about this book, but I just fell in love with the characters and really rooted for them. For a YA drama/romance novel, this was just so much fun.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

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This was a book recommended by my library. I knew it must be popular, cause I had to wait 8 weeks to have a chance to read it. I wasn’t sure what to make of it at first, but I quickly got sucked in. Like the title says, the story is mostly about the legend of actress Evelyn Hugo and spans her personal life and career, but the lens the story is told relates to each of her seven husbands. I don’t want to spoil anything, but this is seriously a must-read.

So yeah those are books I’ve all enjoyed recently. I’ve been reading on my phone a lot and borrowing e-books from my library. I don’t often do book reviews, I just normally talk about if I liked the book or not, as these things are pretty subjective. But if you’ve read any of these books, let me know! Or if you can recommend any books to me, I’d appreciate that too.

 

Stay safe.

Angela.