Things I Love

Sometimes I think there’s nothing I love more than making lists. But then I remember how much I hate hyperbole and how–really–I love all these other things a lot more.

  • The ocean and the mountains.
  • Sunrises and sunsets.
  • An open expanse of flat land that lets you see for miles. There’s nothing like the sky above a prairie. (There it is. Written proof that I actually love Illinois.)
  • Reading. YA if I’m sitting on a beach or feeling mindless. Classic literature with a steaming cup of tea in the winter. Memoir (creative nonfiction) when I’m thinking about the book I’ll probably never write. Fiction at every other time. (Especially when it’s John Irving.)
  • Candy. Brach’s lemon drops have earned a permanent place in my purse over the past ten years and are particularly handy when I (or my niece) want to sing in the winter. Dorval Strawberry Sour Power straws were the candy of my youth and to this day I try never to be without them. Sixlets are the reason I put on twenty pounds after my wedding, and white chocolate is my kryptonite.
  • Hot tea. I’m a year-round drinker of Republic of Tea’s Vanilla Almond black tea and Pineapple Ginger green. In the fall, I go nuts over the Pumpkin Spice, which generally sells out quickly. Occasionally, I throw in some variety of mint tea as well, particularly if I’m sick.
  • iPhone 8+ (really any of the pluses). I’m a great fan of the form factor, not to mention the plethora of apps and games that seem to anticipate my wants and needs. This latest version sports the best camera yet and has relegated my DSLR to the top shelf of the closet.
  • Apple Music. We have six people in our family share group and all six of us use the service. This averages out to less than $3 per person, per month. Rumor has it that the individual subscription is now also available on Android devices.
  • Canva. I used to make all my web graphics in Photoshop, but once they started the monthly subscription bullshit, I was reluctant to keep doing that. When I found Canva and realized I could make custom sized graphics (in addition to the thousands of premade templates), I was in love.
  • Sims 2. When I installed the game on my new computer (I have the Ultimate Collection on Origin), I used the following mods: Empty neighborhood templates of all the main ‘hoods, MATY’s Director’s Cut, Scriptorium plus Radiance lighting, GunMod’s camera mod, and about 9 GB of Maxis match custom content from amazing creators who do not charge a dime and who continue to be as obsessed as I am.
  • Google Docs. Because I move between three different computers and a phone, I have fallen entirely in love with both Docs and Google Photos. Honestly, if I had known about the latter a few years ago, I might never have lost half my photo library to iCloud (which I patently refuse to use to this day).
  • MyNetDiary. I have never used the pay service, but have found the app invaluable. A few years ago, I lost 65 pounds while using it to track my calories, and it continues to be a part of my everyday life.
  • My Chromebook. It has a pittance of onboard storage space, but with Docs and Photos, I find that I’m never short. I love the battery life and the size, but the very best part is that–unlike my MacBook and other laptops–it doesn’t overheat in my lap. I think everyone should have one. Certainly every writer.
  • These notebooks. Also these. I only write in pencil, so I don’t worry about text bleeding through from one side to the other.
  • Starbucks. I love their skinny vanilla lattes and their egg white, spinach and feta wraps, but I love their politics even more. They also occasionally provide me with a great place to write.
  • Kindle Paperwhite. I’ve had mine for several years now and I’ve bought the people I love countless others. While my library of purchased books is downright ridiculous all on its own, I supplement it with epubs downloaded from various sources (and converted using Calibre). Although I still love my actual books for in-depth reading (and writing in!), I find that I prefer the Kindle for any fluff reading I do.
  • Crocheting. Lately, I’ve been making exclusively scrap afghans. This means that I haven’t bought a single skein of my favorite yarn for my own use in many, many moons. I’m happy about this because my favorite yarn comes from one of my least favorite companies on the planet, Hobby Lobby.
  • Driving. Since I was a kid, I’ve loved aimless, day-long drives. Thank goodness my husband feels the same; I can only think that we have a lifetime of adventures ahead of us.
  • A Prairie Home Companion. I loved Garrison Keillor’s stories, but Chris Thile’s music knocks my socks off. Hubby and I saw the show in St. Paul this past May, and we’d both love to go again.
  • Tiny-ish houses. I have no doubt that I’d be perfectly happy in 500 square feet, particularly if it was placed somewhere in the Northeast.
  • Peanut butter toast. I’ve eaten it almost every morning since 2014; that ought to tell you a little something about my level of devotion.
  • Smoking. I might not do it anymore, but a love like that doesn’t just die overnight.
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9 thoughts on “Things I Love

  1. I’m with you all the way down to smoking, which I DID love, but although I quit 50+ years ago I’m now paying the price in lost lung-power so I firmly retract my affections. But what a good idea for a fun blog; I may copy you. (Will link, if I do.) Thanks for a fun read.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Chromebook, eh? I’ve been thinking about buying one, so it’s good to hear that you ❤ yours. The onboard storage concerns me somewhat – since I haven't been compelled to visit the cloud – but perhaps I shall….

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I had the storage concerns too, but once I wrapped my head around how it all works and tried it out, I loved it. Of course, I still have another computer besides that for gaming, and I keep copies of everything on that hard drive as well.

      Liked by 1 person

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