Saturday, July 28, 2018

July Wrap-Up and Plans for August


I read THREE books from my 2018 TBR Pile Challenge list, which is making me smug. This is what happens when I don't have any assigned reading for book groups or whatnot - I read things that I've been wanting to read for a while! Most notable was Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson, which I think everyone in America should read.


Boston Harbor Island view

I listened to the audiobook of the new Alyssa Cole novel, A Princess in Theory, which was even better than I expected. Another audiobook I enjoyed this month was the teen book Piecing Me Together by Renee Watson.

In between audiobooks I'm continuing to listen to my regular podcasts, including the newest one in my rotation, Slow Russian. I don't know how much I'm picking up from this because I feel like there are so many new words and expressions in every episode, but if I keep listening regularly I'm sure I can't help but increase (or rebuild) my vocabulary.

This month I also got to listen to Janelle Monae live! This is the second time I've seen her perform and she is just fantastic. The first time was a few years ago when she opened to Prince, and I'm sure I don't have to tell you how great that show was.


I saw the RBG documentary, which was great. I really didn't know a ton about Ruth Bader Ginsburg, so I was very happy to learn about all her early cases that she chose because they advanced the rights of women. I also learned that she survived pancreatic cancer, which I didn't even think was possible, and that gives me a lot of hope that she might be immortal.

This month I also finished watching The Handmaid's Tale season 2, and continued with Poldark and Parts Unknown. If you're interested in travel to unusual places and you like food, I highly recommend that show.

A while ago a friend recommended the movie Mudbound, and I also finally watched that. It's about two families in Mississippi - a black family and a white family - during World War II. It's very upsetting, but also very good.


Corn Fritters

Very little, mostly fritters. I had a lot of social plans this month which means I didn't have a ton of time for cooking. I ate a lot of things like tacos and pasta with pesto. But I did make the Zucchini-Cornmeal cakes from Dinner by Melissa Clark, which were actually a lot of work but very tasty, and the Corn Fritters from the Smitten Kitchen website, which were also delicious but easier to make. It was nice to be able to buy fresh ingredients from the farmer's market that's near my work. The only thing I cooked that wasn't fritters was the 8-minute Pantry Dal from the Oh She Glows website. Don't be fooled by the title, it takes a lot longer than 8 minutes. But you can use up whatever vegetables you have on hand and it is very easy to throw together in a pot, and then you can relax while it simmers away. I'll be making this again. And probably the corn fritters too.

In addition to all my social plans I've been making a concerted effort to cut down on food. When I pulled out all my summer clothes this year I found that some of them didn't fit. I've been using an app called MyPlate to track calories, though I'm not restricting myself as much as the app suggested because that's just not sustainable. It worked out fine this month, but I had little cooking time anyhow. I'm not sure how it will go when I do have more time for cooking and baking, but I probably won't find that out until fall. At any rate, I have a lot of cookbooks with options for pretty healthy fare so I'm not very concerned.


As I mentioned, I had a lot of social activities. July 1 was an annual day trip with friends to the Boston Harbor Islands, followed by a delicious seafood dinner in Boston. The following weekend I went to a party, and then spent an afternoon with a friend I hadn't seen in a while and we did an escape room, which was WAY more fun than I thought it would be. I had evening dinner plans with various friends throughout the month and then this past weekend was a friend's birthday and we went to the Janelle Monae concert.

Sock in progress
After not having gone to a yoga class (or my gym at all) for a year or close to it, I went to yoga this month and it felt amazing. I'm hoping I can get back into the habit of going!

In knitting news, I finally finished that second sleeve! All I have to do now is sew in the sleeves, sew up the hems and cuffs, and make and attach the elbow patches.

I have also begun another project! First time in close to two years, so this is big news. I started a black sock, because I am in need of black socks. I've been working on it on the bus and while watching tv, so it's moving right along already. It's the Chain Rib pattern from my old friend, Sensational Knitted Socks.

Plans for August

I'm actually posting this a little early, because I'm ending July and beginning August with a trip to Prince Edward Island. I've never been there before and I'm really looking forward to relaxing, eating, and enjoying nature.

Later in the month we'll be going camping again since we were a bit shortchanged by the weather last time. And I have unspecified plans to take a day trip with a friend one Saturday, so I'm sure we'll end up doing something fun.

How was your July?

No comments: