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Starting Anew

Well, It’s been just over 5 years since I last posted in this blog. 

Back in 2012, I was just starting my final semester at college. I was settled into my life with my then boy friend and excited to be graduating. 

Now in 2017, I am living in a new state with my now husband and am Head Cake Decorator at my store. 

So things in my life are just a little bit different. And I aim to make things more different by starting my New Year’s resolution, finally. 

My goals are:

1) To read more

Last year my goal was to read 50 books. I hit 28. 

Not a bad number, and I did move two states over which took up just a little bit of my time, but I had thought I could do so much better. (I never really kept track before last year so I don’t have accurate numbers) This year my goal is to read 35.

Ever since I graduated from school I’ve felt like I haven’t read nearly as much as I used to. I don’t have those moments in between classes and waiting in classes where I could just whip out a book and read for 5, 10, 30 minutes. Now my time for reading has become more limited to in before before I pass out.

I need to take back those moments, read a little before work, on my lunchbreak, in the bathroom (don’t judge me), as well as before bed. My first goal is to finish all the books I’ve started but put down for one reason or another. Then it’s time to tackle my to read stack, it’s almost as tall as I am. 

So far I’ve managed to finish one book (The Dragon’s Path by Daniel Abraham) and I’m halfway through a book I started probably 2 years ago and never finished (Gardens of the Moon by Steven Erikson).

2) To write more

This is one I tell myself almost every year. And every year I do basically zero writing except for NaNoWriMo. I did manage a short story that is a sort of prequel to a larger story, so there is that.

But I could have done so much more. I have so many stories outlined, characters created, plots written down, that just sit in my Story Thoughts notebook and never see the light of day. 

My goal isn’t necessarily to sit down and starting writing books, not yet anyway. I’ll continue to save that for November. But I do want to do more short writings, story challenges and sprints. My goal is to write at least one challenge per week of more than 500 words. Start small and if it goes well I’ll up my challenge. I’ll be posting what I write in my other blog a place to put stories

My first challenge is this blog post itself. Put it out there so I have no choice but to follow all I’ve written down. 

3) To bake more

You’d think working in a bakery, I wouldn’t want to spend more time with baked goods. You’d be wrong.

I love getting my hands in the dough, experimenting with new recipes, and sharing my creations with friends. At work I don’t get that. 

(I wrote a long rant here about customers and work but decided to cut it in the interests of keeping this post more positive and hopeful. And I spend far too much time complaining about work and it’s affecting me negatively.)

I’ve actually done really well with this one so far this year. I’ve baked at least one item per week so far.

Some bread that definitely needed a longer rest time than the recipe called for.

Some cookies that are now my go to chocolate chip recipe.

And today a new experiment in trying to recreate these brownies my husband and I used to get from a local pizza place. They were thick and fudgy and rich and so damn delicious. The brownies I made today aren’t there but I do have some ideas how what to do differently next time. 

In Conclusion:

I’ve found myself more and more in the past couple years (re: ever since I found tumblr) spending more and more of my time of things that are mindless and pointless. It’s just so as to just zone out and scroll through a constant stream of content that suddenly an entire day is wasted. 

Enough is enough, I’m done wasting my time with pointless things. I’d rather spend it doing the things I love. 

Part of the reason for this is wasting time on timewaster websites like buzzfeed, reddit, and tumblr. So, I set up the Chrome extension StayFocused and gave myself a limit of 60 minutes to spend on timewaster sites before it blocks me from accessing those sites. 

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Delicious tea

I love drinking tea, I drink about a full pot of tea a day. And since I prefer loose leaf teas, this can get a liiiitttle expensive since the only place I know to get good loose leaf tea is Teavana and if you’ve ever been there, you know what their prices are like.
So I was excited to discover an online shop for teas on etsy.com (From 4chan no less). teaman’s prices are so much better, and he has an amazing selection of hand blended teas in loose leaf or tea bag form. He did not have my favorite genmaicha tea (sadness) but I did pick out a Rose hip Hibiscus tea that sounded yummy, and at only $5 for 4 ounces I bought it right away. I also picked out a sampler of five of his tea bagged teas. He has a special going on through the month of February where if you spend over $7 you got ten teabags of ceylon tea for free so I thought why not.
I think I annoyed my boyfriend a bit with my obsessed checking of the mailbox every day, a couple times a day, until my tea finally arrived.

The tea I ordered from teaman

I kinda look like a drug dealer.... of deliciousness!

It was late when I got the tea so I went right ahead and brewed me a cup of the sleepy time tea that I picked out for the sampler. I don’t know if it helped me sleep or not but it sure was tasty. The next day I brewed up a pot of the rose hip hibiscus. As soon as I opened up the Ziploc bag I was entranced, the smell was so strong and so deliciously amazing. I would love to have a candle of it so I could just continue smelling that tea.

my teapot with some rose hip hibiscus tea in it

Yes, that is my stove, the lighting in my apartment sucks.

I think this what heaven smells like.

The tea brewed up into a gorgeous deep pink color. The taste was delicious. Similar to Tazo’s passion fruit tea but less….in your face. I would love to brew this as iced tea sometime. Mmm….drink a cold glass of this on a hot summer day…ahhh.

I recommend anyone who likes tea, even a little bit, to check this guys teas out HERE. His selection is large and his prices are good.

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think happy thoughts

So my best friend has cancer. Non Hodgkins Lymphoma. Its been just over a year now since she was diagnosed three weeks before Christmas.

I hate it, I hate it so much that I can’t make things better for her. She had to move back home for treatment almost two hours away from me. between work and school I couldn’t see her nearly as often as I wanted to. I miss being able to pop over to her place for a movie or one of our favorite shows whenever I wanted.

But you want to know what I’ve realized I hate the most? You know how once you’re made aware of something you start to see it everywhere? Since being involved in my friend’s cancer I’ve been more aware of cancer around me, the fundraisers, the the ribbons, everything.

And all of it is for breast cancer; it pisses me off. I’m all for fighting against breast cancer, but there are a lot more kinds of cancer than just the ones that attacks the chest. But do you ever see fundraisers or ribbons for those? No, its always breast cancer. All fundraisers go to fund breast cancer research. Where’s the love for the rest of the cancers? They cause just as much pain and death as breast cancer, many cause so much more.

Instead people concern themselves with the boobs, the ta-ta’s. Which tells me something about people’s priorities. Why can’t we just have a basic cancer ribbon? A fight against cancer month? I don’t think black history should get its own month (more on that later) nor do I think a specific cancer should get its own  month. It’s unfair to the families of other cancer victims.

What is your opinion on this?