Sunday, July 28, 2013

Sunday night chit-chat and sealed pot challenge

I was just going to write up a quick post and then I realised it's already after eight o'clock. Might as well make it a Sunday night chit-chat in that case. These long evenings are great. At least now I know why I'm feeling tired already. I went to Potsdam last weekend - lovely place. Went swimming in a lake, too and it was just too perfect for words. I was sorry we didn't get to do it every day. Will definitely have to think about going back there for another visit sometimes.
I didn't take too many photos. For one it was too hot to think most of the time and on top of that my nieces and nephew kept borrowing the camera. So I have lots of shots of our bums when walking ahead of whoever had the camera as well as plenty of half faces and bits of chin but not a whole lot of scenery. For some reason though, of all the pictures I did take I like this one the best. It's at the Sans Souci park, which was the summer residence for one or other of the Kaiser Wilhelms and these arches lead into where the orangerie is. Majestic is the word that comes to mind.

This next photo is one that I took in the botanic gardens in the park. I was trying out some of the different effects on my camera but of course now I can't remember which order I did them in. This is either soft focus or sparkle and is far and away the nicest photo of this pond.

Other than that, I'm just going to share one photo from a few weeks ago when I, without actually planning it, did a mini-clearout of my wardrobe. It was more of a folding and sorting than anything else but I also packed my heavier trousers and jeans into a basket at the bottom of the cupboard so that things have a chance to stay a bit less cluttered on the shelves.
 And after holding on to them for far too many years I found myself asking myself why on earth I still had some things. Going with the mood, I quickly sorted out some old tracksuit bottoms and a couple of tops that I know I'm never going to wear again. And, even better, by that evening I had tidied them into a bag and the following day I brought them straight to the clothes bank. Hooray for actually getting stuff out of the house. I think it was four tracksuit bottoms and three tops that I got rid of. A small start but all progress is progress.
And on with the chit-chat...

What are you:
Transition by Iain M. Banks (or Iain Banks if you prefer :) ). This is my book for next month's book club and since I failed spectacularly at even getting past chapter 2 of The Great Gatsby for last time, I thought I should get a good start on this. So far I've only managed a couple of pages though because I got sidetracked into re-reading The Hunger Games trilogy.

Listening to
The radio on the internet. Dublin's Sunshine Mix again (not as good as when it was Dublin's Country Mix but still good easy listening). 

Nothing really. Might re-watch another episode of Firefly later. 

Too hot for cooking this weekend, even if it has cooled down a bit this evening (so that it's only 26 degrees or so). I was at a barbeque this afternoon and had so much to eat I couldn't manage a meal anyway. But I got the first tomatoes of the year from the market yesterday so I'll make up some tomato and feta salad and maybe have a little bit of that with the rest for lunch tomorrow. There are also strawberries calling my name.

Happy you accomplished this week
Decluttered a little bit more by giving some old beach toys (bucket and spade etc.) to a former neighbour. They were actually stuff that was bought for my sister when she was visiting Ireland once and I kept them as she couldn't fit them in her luggage. She did get a couple of years use out of them during her summer holidays before I moved and since they were in good nick I just threw them in with everything else when I moved. Nice to have them moved on to someone who will make use of them. I also cycled to and from the barbeque today - I'm very nervous in general and in traffic in particular but I did it with only getting off to cross major crossings once or twice on the way there and not at all on the way home. I've kept on top of the washing-up all week and I did the ironing this morning, too, so I'm all set for the week ahead.

Looking forward to next week
Boss is away so I am hoping to get a chance to catch up on a few housekeeping tasks like filing and archiving. And it's my last week before two weeks holiday, which I am really looking forward to.

Thankful for today
Fresh tomatoes! Sounds a tad facetious perhaps but I mean it most sincerely. Also, living in a country that still has more or less unlimited clean water available for positively decadent uses like having a cold bath yesterday afternoon when it was very, very hot. So relaxing to lie in the cool water with my feet resting on the edge of the bath where the sun was coming in the window - I actually fell asleep for over half-an-hour. Luxury.

Bonus question: do you know any 2nd (or 3rd!!) langugages?
English native speaker. Fluent German. School French and I can get by in most situations if I need to (not without getting very hot and going bright red though!). Irish too, although I'm by no means fluent - same as a lot of people my age, I think - couldn't hold a conversation but can understand the occasional ad on the radio or few words thrown into an English sentence. I did Russian in college as my minor language but never followed up after leaving so I haven't retained an awful lot of that I have to admit. Can still write my name though, which is something. Maybe one day I'll get around to it again.

If you fancy joining in with Sunday night chit-chat, simply post your answers to the questions and head over to Half-Dozen Daily to link up.

As for the Sealed Pot this week, just a few euro went in on a couple of days when I stopped at the shops on my way home from work and carried the loose change home in my hand. I've realised that I really need a mini sealed pot in my desk at work, too, as I often have loose change from one thing or another. And one of my biggest temptations is having loose change in my purse and a craving to hit the vending machine - with a sealed pot on hand I could rid myself of half the temptation by sealing away the money before I could get at the chocolate. Saving and losing weight - two birds, one stone, dontcha think?


Anonymous said...

Oh - that photo in the Botanic Gardens! So tranquil and serene to look at. The very thought of long evenings and lake swims sounds perfect.

Great work on decluttering the clothes and beach gear :-)
- Fiona

~Carla~ said...

Beautiful photo's and great job on the decluttering!! I ***ReALLY*** need to do that with my clothing.. I have far too much and tend to wear the same items over & over again! That's wonderful about the languages... I find it soo hard to learn new languages! But my daughter is incredible at it.. she's 15 and knows english, german, and is working her way through Japanese and french. I guess i'm just "too old". ;)

Moonwaves said...

I actually looked at the photo last night and found myself wondering when and where I had taken it. It wasn't until I saw the next one with a different effect that I remembered. LOL
I used to want to learn loads of different languages but I find as I've gotten older, especially the last couple of years, I just don't feel like it's possible anymore. Of course, it is if you really try but I think I'm slowly losing that natural ability that seemed to come so easily before. My parents went to Spanish lessons when I was a kid (they would have been just a few years younger than I am now) and became fluent quite quickly so I think it might run in the family a bit. But actually them going for lessons was a big help because speaking a foreign language didn't seem like a strange thing to do, if you know what I mean. Japanese used to be on my list of ones to learn, too but I think at this stage, if I ever to learn any new ones, it'll be ones that at least use an alphabet I already know. Although sign language would be kind of cool to try too.

Moonwaves said...

Excellent question, by the way, Carla. I've really enjoyed reading about what other languages people can speak.