Back to Our Regularly Scheduled Programming (sort of….)

Life has finally started to settle down after two back-to-back moves. I am almost all unpacked, mostly organized, and am starting to get into a routine of sorts. I love the new place (it’s very quiet) and it’s nice being within driving distance of my parents again. As I’m sure you can guess, a lot has happened in the past few months so here’s a brief summary to get you up to speed.

Assorted plants in pots by a window

Plants – Only the grafted cactus didn’t make it to the new house. The combination of hot car, damp soil, and then cooler temperatures did it in. Everyone else is adjusting to the new latitudes quite well. The only new indoor plants I’ve acquired are oregano and basil, which are from cuttings I took of my mom’s garden. I’m currently trying to root begonia and sage cuttings as well.

There is a small portion of my yard here that I’m able to put landscaping in and I put in roses, lavender, and a mum (look for posts soon) last month. I hope I got them in the ground early enough that they survive the winter. I want to do more landscaping this spring, which gives me all winter to come up with ideas and plans.

Roses, Lavender, and Mum in garden

Etsy – Yikes. This got put on the back burner and forgotten about. Not really. I did an arts and crafts fair in September (shared a booth with my mom) to “test the water” and didn’t sell a single thing. I did get lots of good feedback (people were impressed with my items, but it was too warm to be buying knitwear) so it was an overall good experience. If I do craft fairs again, I’ll try the ones later in the year and see how it goes. I’ve also decided to take up weaving which, if I get proficient at it, may make its way into my shop inventory.

This week I hope to start writing up item descriptions for the actual Etsy shop. My goal is to have a few things listed by the end of the month. I think the reason it is taking me so long to get this done is that I want things to be perfect, but in reality if I wait for things to be perfect, I’ll never make any progress. So onward…

Food – I have decided that my goal for this fall is to get good at roasting chicken. It’s actually a fairly simple dish but looks impressive and has lots of leeway as far as flavors are concerned. So far the two biggest hurdles I’ve had to cross have been (1) getting over my discomfort with handling a raw chicken carcass and (2) learning how to carve a cooked chicken without mangling it. The next one is getting the cooking time down. Even when the meat reaches a safe temperature I end up having to put the chicken back in the oven to cook longer because the juices are still pink. I’ll figure it out eventually.

Here are a few of the links that I’ve found useful:

Basic Whole Roasted Chicken
Roast Chicken with Saffron and Lemons
How to Carve a Roast Chicken

Now it’s just practice, delicious, delicious practice.

Two trees with red leaves at dusk

Overall I have been feeling better since moving out of Florida. I mean, I’m still nowhere near 100% but my exercise tolerance and recovery times are much better. Right now my new-ish challenges are keeping warm (which I must figure out if I want to survive winter) and regaining my command of the English language. This past month I’ve been having aphasia like nobody’s business, which is only made worse by my mind replacing the words I’ve forgotten with cuss words, and my word order is a bit sketchy. I’m hoping it’s not as bad when I write as when I speak, otherwise we’ll be in for some interesting posts in the future.

Speaking of the future, I hope to get back to updating this blog regularly. I’m still planning on doing plant profiles but I’ll have to figure out something new to call them since I’m no longer in an apartment. Right now I’m taking the Herbal Academy of New England’s Intermediate Herbalist course, and I’ll be taking a soils class this spring, so some of that material may end up on here as well.

Hope you’re all having a wonderful November!

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