Summer 2021?

One of the bloggers I follow says she coined the term “Summer of Love” for 2021.

After the past 15-16 months of Zoom, quarantine, drive-by baby showers, virtual meetings and learning, YouTube yoga, Instacart, missing our loved ones across the country, lack of hugs and kisses – it’s time to love again!

Andrea McGinty, May 2021

Andrea is encouraging ‘proactive change’ in your:

  • Health
  • Career
  • Family
  • Helping Others
  • Love Life (I think she is an online dating coach?)

While these are all noteworthy suggestions, they just aren’t my cup of tea this year. As I think of my summer ahead, my intentions are more along the lines of:

  • Enjoying the moment
  • Having fun with my husband, family and friends
  • Taking care of my health
  • Not taking on any major projects

So for me, maybe it is more about 2021 being my ‘summer of self-love’!

See you on Friday,



Little Kidneys

I was re-reading one of the French Women books the other day.  Author Mireille uses the term, petits riens, which means little nothings that bring pleasure to life. When I looked it up on Google translate, I inadvertently spelled riens, reins, which means ‘little kidneys’.  Who knew what a difference transcribing a letter could make in French!

I also came across this blog post where the author describes her 8 Simple Pleasures to Enjoy After (or before) Age 60.  I am totally with her about a trip to Trader Joes.

Both of these inspired me to create my own list of simple and essential pleasures.  In addition to TJ’s,, my list includes:

  1. A tea latte made with soy and a piece of toast with organic butter in the morning
  2. Wine (organic) @ 5 with my husband
  3. Grayling stud earrings in aurora borealis (no longer available) and my Allbirds shoes
  4. A mystery book and a mystery on TV (Acorn, PBS, Amazon Prime, or Netflix – I’m not picky)
  5. A knitting project
  6. A Zoom date with friends
  7. A walk outside (providing it isn’t too cold, windy, or rainy)
  8. A card or letter waiting for me in the mail
  9. A Pentel Energel pen and a Paper Mate Sharpwriter #2 pencil
  10. A trip in the offing to see family or friends, or a jaunt to Europe in the works
  11. Blogging

As I came up with this list, two things struck me.  The first is that, except for #10, all of these simple and essential pleasures are doable even in a pandemic.  The second is that any diet that doesn’t include a soy latte, toast with butter and wine @ 5 is a non-starter!

When it comes to our petits riens we don’t need to know exactly what they add to the fullness of our experience; we need only to be open to the possibility that seeming trivialities may play a significant role in how we feel overall.

Mirelle Guiliano, French Women for All Seasons

What are your petis riens?

I will be back on Wednesday.


There’s No Place Like Home

When I was growing up, my mother always accused me of having ‘ants in my pants’.  It wasn’t because I was super active (I wasn’t), it was because I never wanted to stay home.  The ‘ants’ have followed me into my adulthood until……

The pandemic!

At the beginning of the shutdowns back 10 months ago, I had a hard time staying home.  I really struggled with not doing our usual travel and just running around.  Over the summer, I got into a routine and it helped to be able to be outside for exercise and to safely meet up with friends and family.

As the fall rolled around and the weather began to shift and activity moved indoors, I expected to get pretty antsy.  While I do have my moments, I am pretty content to hang out at home. 

My comfort zone has shrunk a great deal.  I want to stay safe until we can be vaccinated.  So that means I go to the grocery store early in the day, take walks in my neighborhood and go to a few other places when it is quiet.  My contact with friends is via Zoom or, on a rare day when the weather cooperates, an outdoor visit.  Most of the time I just hang out at home with my husband, take a walk in the neighborhood or run errands close to home.

Speaking of home, I have no real desire to do a makeover., although an update would be a good idea.  I did find this great post on looking at our homes differently, thanks to COVID 19. I agree with much of it.  I would like a dedicated exercise room and the idea of creating an outdoor space that is livable year around. I will be curious to see how much our stay at home experience during the pandemic impacts home design in the future.

As I was writing this post, I found myself wanting to re-read some books that I have had forever. One is Living a Beautiful Life by Alexandra Stoddard, from 1986!  I still find some of it pretty timely (even though who has a Filofax these days) and I like her ideas about rituals.  Another book on my shelf is Happier at Home by Gretchen Rubin from 2012.  I never finished it, so now might be a good time to do so.  And, failing those, I can always reread one of my million simplicity books 😊! 

For the first time in my life, I can honestly say ‘there is no place like home’ and I breathe a sigh of relief when I walk through the door.

“Safe, safe, safe the heart of the house beats proudly”

Virginia Woolf

Stay safe at home this weekend and I will see you on Monday.


And She’s 16!

Today is our beloved granddaughter’s 16th birthday. It is so hard to believe she is a full-fledged teenager and has her driver’s permit!  We saw her briefly last week.  She is pictured above on the right.

As I was thinking about her milestone birthday a few weeks ago, I came across this post: An Open Letter to My Grandchildren – 10 things I want them to know. It is worth checking out her post to see the descriptions for each. I think most are spot on and include:

  • Live life on your own terms
  • Whatever you do, throw your heart into it
  • No matter what happens to you, take responsibility
  • Be a lifelong learner
  • There are beautiful people everywhere
  • Feelings are mutual
  • Expect the best
  • Laugh often
  • Don’t forget your connection to all of nature
  • Make the world a better place

 I certainly agree with most of them and would call out:

  • Live life on your own terms
  • Be a lifelong learner – be open to new ideas and experiences and read books!
  • Laugh often – laughter keeps you sane
  • Connect to nature – get outside every day and explore the forests and beaches when you can
  • Take responsibility – always a good idea and will make you a better person

I would also add to the list:

  • Travel often
  • Make new friends and keep the old
  • Always have a pet
  • Take care of your health – physical, emotional, and spiritual
  • Speaking of sprit, have a connection with the spirit – in whatever way works for you
  • Honor who you are – don’t try and imitate someone else, just be your own best self.

We are lucky to have M as a granddaughter.  She is smart, wise, gets along well with people, loves animals and holds her own in the best possible way!

So happy birthday, dear granddaughter!

Grandma A