Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Sights and Moments We Will Never Forget

One evening last month, Rick and I glanced at my computer showing a slide show of "My Pictures" as a screen saver. This one came up and we both agreed -- that first walk on our first trip to Myrtle Beach was one we would never forget.

Thursday, January 25, 2024

Life in the Deep Freeze (and Beyond)

Last week we had dinner at the home of friends. It was so frigid outside that when we arrived and entered, greeted by hugs, an inviting fire in the fireplace, and a glass of wine it was like going to heaven. When we left five and a half hours later, we realized it was after eleven. I had no idea. The conversation, the laughter, the warmth, made me forget the chill outside. That's what friendship can do for people. 

Monday, January 22, 2024

The Books of 2023 -- The Annual Book Report

I always enjoy pulling together this annual reading summary --  what hit the mark, what missed, any new discoveries.

This year I read 55 books with a total of 17,785 pages. Not my best, not my worst. And for the most part, they were worth the time. And really, that's the most important part!

Books with links click back to my reviews earlier this year. 

Here is my Top Twelve (in no particular order)

Friday, January 19, 2024

Making Pretzels with Barb and Kate

(I meant to post this last spring when we did this and I'm not sure what happened! So... step into my friend Barb's kitchen for a fun day of pretzel making -- and a link to the recipe!) 

I'm so glad my friend Barb loves to teach us new things! When she asked if we wanted to learn to make soft pretzels, do you think I hesitated for a second? Of course not! 

So, it was off to her home, where the first thing we saw entering was this!

Tuesday, January 16, 2024

It's a Little Brisk Out There...

Here in Michigan we have coasted along the early winter weeks wondering where winter was. (I, for one, wasn't complaining.) True, the skies were gray, there was plenty of drizzle, and it wasn't great weather for something like a picnic, but the temps were adequate (high for the month) and I didn't mind not having to battle snow or ice if headed out.

Then we got our share of the deep freeze.

Friday, January 12, 2024

Cork Poppers Sample the Wines of Spain

I haven't had a Cork Poppers post in months so I had been looking forward to our September gathering for weeks. Yes, September. Life happened but now I'm happy to update you with our autumn Corkie escapade!

When Kate chose "wines of Spain" as our theme, I was excited -- I love Spanish wine and plans for a potluck menu of Spanish-related foods and cheeses sounded delicious. 

Then I got on meds where I couldn't have red wine, cheese, sausage (like chorizo) or all the other good stuff! But I could still have loads of fun!

Sunday, January 7, 2024

A Few December Books

After last month's embarrassing solo entry, I was happy to finish off three books. All these are mysteries and all are worth your time.

Thursday, January 4, 2024

Checking My 2023 Blog Stats (And Thoughts on Blogging)

This year I did something I rarely do -- check to see what my most viewed posts of the year were. Several of my favorite bloggers have taken this look back and I enjoy it, because I sometimes find ones I've missed! I know those who have advertising on their blogs do this more often than I -- and it makes sense. During my years of working in marketing and promotion, I learned that if you want to attract the dollars you have to appeal to the public taste. More eyeballs, more revenue potential.

photo of mural taken several years ago at ArtPrize, Grand Rapids. Artist unknown

I don't advertise on The Marmelade Gypsy. Blogging offers me an online journaling platform and the gift of making friendships from around the world. Since Blogger is a free platform, I don't need to worry about paying for it.

  But it IS curious to know what people do like, what was the most interesting to them. So, here -- with links back in case you are new -- are those with the most views in 2023.

Tuesday, January 2, 2024

A New Year, A New Word

In 2022 my guiding word was "Endure." We had wrapped up 2021 with its Covid restrictions, isolation, and the January 6 insurrection and 2022 wasn't looking any better. It felt like an odd choice then -- here on Marmelade Gypsy I wrote:

"At the holidays, we were reflecting on a word or two to describe 2021. (I said "schizophrenic.") My friend Jan said "Endure." And that's what I feel about the 2022. Endure it. Slog through the isolation, the news, the doc appointments, the uncertainty. Just endure it."

Then for 2023, I thought I needed to up my game, become a little more hopeful, so I chose "Rabbit" -- which was because it was the year of the rabbit and that symbolically had qualities I wanted to emulate.

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