Things that make me happy:
The popped rice season has started! It lasts while the weather is cool enough to be near a constant fire but still warm enough to sit outside all day. I bought two bags of popped rice and two of popped wheat on the way home today, and then they left a Hansel-and-Gretel trail (from my bike basket) all the way from the gate to the garage!
Recycled yarn – silk from sari fabric scraps – from India; and Rama II – traded for online via BookMooch – a sequel to a random book I acquired and enjoyed earlier this year.
I call these Chinese Lantern Trees. There were (and hopefully still are) some near the entrance to the Kempsville Public Library back in Virginia. Here there are many along some streets, such as my own, and they simply glow when the light hits them right! We don’t get spectacular leaf displays here, but these are making my autumn more colorful.
This peeler-corer-slicer (not the mystery mail mentioned before – photos of that in use have gone missing but will hopefully be located soon) was a wonderful find a couple years ago in a battered box all alone at the bottom of a supermarket shelf. Here it’s in use to prepare what ended up being a double-batch of applesauce, most for a sick friend but a bit kept for my own enjoyment and that of my helpers!
Activities for my classes that come off well
In this case, I assembled it from cork trivets from the Beijing Ikea, push-pins from the market (at the third or fourth stationary stall I tried), and plain rubber bands. No colored bands to be found, sadly, but I think it worked well anyway, and the kids definitely enjoyed it. It reminded me of the peg-boards of my youth (something like this item, but mine had a rigid black base and simple cylindrical pegs), where you could put pegs into holes on one side or string rubber bands around protrusions on the other side.
(second photo borrowed from earlier this year)
Specifically, having all my hand towels/rags/washcloths clean and dry, as you seen in the photos, as well as clothes, blankets, etcetera. Not much smells better than walking into the apartment and smelling fabric softener. Well, lots of other things smell better in the apartment, but they mostly involve cooking and thus aren’t available to smell when first returning home!
A clean house
I’ve hired a woman to help clean my apartment recently. For three hours on Friday morning she does basic dusting and sweeping/mopping of the main parts of the house, and in between, she deep cleans parts of the house that haven’t had a proper deep-clean since I first moved in. Such as the kitchen counter under the stove and boxes. (The wood boxes to either side of the stove are what I use as a counter, since the actual counter is much too low for me to use without having serious back issues.) Lurking on the left you can also see another happy thing – a nice Western meal when I feel like relaxing with comfort food. Grilled cheese, sweet pickles, half an apple, and chips (very rare since they’re both expensive and fattening, don’t worry, Mom!)
National Day with all its flags
Even though the flag is different and doesn’t connect to the patriotism and pride of my own, I enjoy seeing everyone display it.
They were getting the camera strap adjusted at the cobbler’s so it could go around the boy’s neck.
Getting things fixed
The cobbler is fixing a ball for me. She refused to let me pay her when she finished!
Melissa and one of her friends as we prepared to hit the streets on National Day with my camera in hand.