It’s February! For some reason, Amelie has decided the beginning of February is a BIG DEAL and she really celebrated it yesterday. Apparently there was going to be a show, with all her dolls and stuffed animals involved. I have no idea why February is so exciting to her – there are no birthdays or holidays or anything particularly special happening in February – but regardless, I like her attitude. It’s February! Let’s celebrate!
Looking back, January was also a month worth celebrating. So many good things going on! It’s been a very nice start to the year for us. Read on for a peek at what we’ve been up to and enjoying over the last five weeks…
1. Bad on Paper podcast
This is my go-to podcast at the moment when I’m driving by myself! It’s hosted by Grace Atwood (whose blog, The Stripe, I’ve been following for a couple of years now) and Becca Freeman (about whom I knew nothing before this, but who is hilarious and also wise!) and is mostly about books but also a whole lot of other topics. It’s super friendly and chatty, has introduced me to some great book recommendations, and is generally a really fun and easy listen. Episodes can be long, but there are no problems picking it up again later if I need to. I also – and this might actually be one of its main drawcards for me – find it incredibly inspirational. One of the things I do miss about the States is for sure how confident people are in saying what they want and going for it, even if it’s hard. It’s not a trait we New Zealanders tend to have in abundance and we should – it’s a good one. So for me, I feel like it’s good for me to listen and remember that there is absolutely nothing wrong or scary in saying what you want and then working towards it. Oh, and they also have a ‘desperation minute’ for themselves and guests where they plug their own work quickly, and I kind of love that idea! We should all talk more about the great work we’re doing. With that in mind, tell me in the comments what you’re proud of at the moment!
2. My new whale friend
So as a bit of backstory, I have a running list of ‘kitchen things for Wonderview’ that I want and a new kitchen crock for my wooden spoons has been on it for months. I saw this guy in the window of a local store and instantly fell in love, and then Hayden suggested it would make a good crock and there was no way we weren’t buying it. It’s actually a water pitcher of course, but it does a great job holding my wooden spoons, and it is making me very happy.
3. Farmstand fruit and vegetables
The vast majority of our fresh food currently is being bought from the side of the road and I’m 100% okay with that. There’s this adorable little farmstand not far from us that sells the best tomatoes (along with really good cucumbers and capsicums); a farm shop with amazing peaches, plums, courgettes, carrots and (more) cucumber (we eat a lot of cucumber here!); and a stall that sets up in the village a couple of days a week with amazing strawberries and watermelon. Combined with the stall selling Wild Wheat bread (our absolute favourite – their kumara sourdough is sooo good) a couple of days a week, our neighbours from whom we buy free range eggs, and of course our local butcher, and I’m only having to do a supermarket shop once a month or so. This way of living makes me so happy!
4. Homemade ice cream
Some of our plums were about to turn faster than we could eat them, so I decided to make ice cream with them! We don’t have an ice cream maker, so I used this recipe for no-churn ice cream and it came out absolutely delicious. It’s super creamy and just tastes amazingly good. I mashed the plums and removed the skins to make a kind of plum puree, which I folded through before I froze it. It makes really quite a lot of ice cream! We’ve nearly finished that one and I’ve made another one so far (strawberry and white chocolate this time round). I will say it does freeze pretty solid and we try to get it out of the freezer about 15 minutes before we use it to let it soften up, so I’m looking forward to conducting more experiments to see if I can get the texture a bit softer. Let me know if you have any tips!
5. Lyttelton Lights coconut-lime room spray
This stuff smells so incredible! I usually burn candles for scent, but it’s nice to have a room spray to spritz around when you need a little fragrance boost (especially on summer days when I’m that much less likely to light a candle). I picked it up from one of my favourite local stores, Caro With Love, before Christmas (when I was meant to be buying a Christmas present for my mother – whoops!) and I’m so happy I did. It just smells like summer. Easily my new favourite.
And last but not least, my own desperation minute! I’m on Instagram as well as here and would love it if you followed me there, or followed this blog (if you don’t already) – I use BlogLovin’ but I’m sure there are other RSS readers out there that I don’t know about that will let you do the same thing. And don’t forget to share in the comments what you’re proud of at the moment! 🤩