Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Holidays are Over

Today marks my return to work, after four weeks of blissful holiday fun. We opted not to travel during our time off, partially because we went south in November for a wedding, partially because we are trying to pay off a mortgage quite quickly, but mainly because our house is still new to us, we haven't had any significant time off since moving in, and we just wanted to hang out here.

I did only a little bit of work during my time off - work that I have wanted to do for a while, but keep putting off because the idea of starting it, amidst all my usual work, was too daunting. Thus, the holidays were a good time to get a start on turning my thesis into a book with no other work distractions, and now that I have a good start I think I will have the motivation to keep working on it.

What made up the bulk of my vacation?

I did manage to blog a lot more regularly. I won't promise to keep it up throughout the teaching semester, but I'll try. I updated and added to the pages across the top, too.

We took Tika for plenty of swims.

I read a lot of books. I went to the library maybe 6 or 7 times during my 4 weeks at home, to pick up books I had reserved.

We painted the toilet and the hallway.
This line between living room and hall is gone. I call the colour "soy chai latte".

I did some bigger cleaning projects that I don't do normally, like dusting off the blinds (a big job, since we always have our windows open) and moving furniture to vacuum under it.
My dislike of these blinds is now more than aesthetic.
We planted a few more things in the garden - a peanut butter tree, jackfruit, another papaya, some more pineapples.

We harvested many huge piles of basil and filled up the freezer with pesto.

Gnocchi with pesto, spinach and broccoli.

(Seriously, our freezer is so full right now, between pesto and mango and reduced-to-clear tofu and veggie burgers.)
Future smoothies.

I took many, many naps.
Like this, but on the couch.

We watched series one of The Killing, a Danish crime drama. It was really good - a little bit like The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, but less polished. I am looking forward to watching series two!

I made a pretty good dent on organising my craft room.

And used it for the first time, to sew a Go board.

I rediscovered my love of cooking and had time for more complicated recipes, like Mochi, Bacon Cheeseburgers, or steamed buns filled with Lamyong beef, cabbage and 5-spice BBQ sauce.

We made mango chutney and jam, and did a few more things that will get their own posts in the coming weeks.
Mango pancakes with mango jam.

But sadly, the holiday fun times are over. I didn't tick off everything I wanted to get done - cleaning behind the oven was never really a priority, I guess - but it was so great to have a few weeks off to play, to relax, to tinker.


Mel said...

Sounds like you had a lovely relaxing break! Yum - what a fantastic pesto stash and I'm in awe of your range of garden plants. Hope they all thrive for you!

The video of Tika is so gorgeous, she looks like she is having such a great time at the river. Recently, we have been taking Ollie to our nearest dog beach on the weekends as he has SO much fun there.

Kari said...

I love the sound of your holiday - sometimes staying at home is best by far and it sounds like you got lots done.

Our summer cleaning tasks also sound quite similar and I have a similar dislike for our blinds! They are so difficult to dust / clean (ours look like yours but are plastic rather than wooden)!

Kari said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Millie said...

you rested, absorbed the love of the home and made fabulous mango pancakes...terrific!!!! Glad you had a great month.Now that's the way to have a holiday. said...

It looks like you had such a great time. I love having a relaxing break like that & I'm impressed you dusted your blinds, I don't think I've done that for a couple of years!

Theresa said...

Mel - we've taken Tika to the ocean dog beach a few times, but she eats too much salt water and the end result is, ahem, not pretty!

Anonymous said...

The Go board is genius!!! Love the stuff you've planted and harvested. I have blinds in the spare room, let's just say they haven't been dusted in a very long time. I even bought one of those dusting things specifically for blinds and haven't used it in a very very long time...

urban vegan said...

Thanks for your kind words about my little Zelda/Buttons xx

Looks like you had a relaxing yet productive vacation! What on earth is a peanut butter tree? I wish I could plant a vegan nutella tree or a tahini tree ;)

Joey said...

Staycations do indeed rule. I do love a good few days at home to potter (always with a bit of cooking time built in). I'm always struck with wonder at your garden - I love it that you can food with food metres rather than food miles! I think I'm also most impressed with the cleaning. I always hoping that some shoemakers elves will come and do mine for me...