First week back after holidays, and it has been wall-to-wall things over here at Birdsong. Brian was on the mainland all week so that left me to start wrangling things back into shape. Suddenly it’s Friday!
Food: For the first time in at least two years (probably longer) I did a meal plan for the week. Because it’s just the two of us, I had fallen into the “why bother” with meal planning – but wow, I forgot how well that works even if it’s just me kicking around here.
The benefits of meal-planning for me are threefold: I actually try new recipes, I have the ingredients on hand, and I build my plan around the pantry and freezer stock that we already have so I use stuff up. I’ve been using the app AnyList for awhile, and it’s the best tool I’ve found for meal planning and shopping. You can import recipes, make meal plans, and create grocery lists from those plans – it’s really facilitated some fantastic meals this week (including Miso-Glazed Black Cod with Saffron Rice, a fantastic tuna melt, a farro salad, stuffed acorn squash and a thai-quinoa bowl). We have a temporary roommate who I’ve been cooking for and he has declared me the winner of dinner this week. It’s been pretty great.
The picture above is from a fish filleting session yesterday after my friend Jenn picked up fish for her and I at the government wharf on Wednesday night. We have been buying from Island Wild, who I highly recommend if you want to support a local fishing family on Vancouver Island. Buying whole fish is by far the least expensive way to get it in your freezer, and the skills needed to do the filleting are all on youtube. Since the pandemic, and the bottom falling out of the restaurant industry, we are seeing more fish in our local communities and I am grateful for that return to being able to eat from our ecosystem.
Textiles: Got nothing here this week, other than a tiny bit of work on a top I’m making. I have been obsessed, however, with the idea of making a bodysuit or two – so I’ve downloaded and printed the Rowan pattern (snaps at the crotch – so smart) which looks like a pretty quick make. I’m going to finish the top this weekend and then it’s time for some serious sewing. My fall and winter wardrobe is lacking at the moment. I seem to have a lot of workout clothes (ie: t-shirts) and nothing else.
Work: Returned to work after holidays. Hated it for one whole day, then relaxed and I’m back in the swing of things. Yesterday I held my first union meeting since the start of the pandemic, over MS Teams – it was a bit epic but I got through it and people showed up! I have a huge amount of stuff to get through between now and the winter holidays – a big staffing process, setting up a new project, onboarding a new person on my team – but I’m getting recognition for my work, and my leadership is supportive, these are things that make a difference after years of poor leadership and no acknowledgement.
Fitness: I have been really on track with my goals this week. Since Sunday I’ve been for three runs, had two weight lifting sessions (third one today), and done a couple of at-home yoga classes. I’ve instituted 30 minute fitness breaks into my work day at 9 am – noon in Ottawa when all my colleagues break for lunch and 3 hours into my work day. That’s when I either go for a run around the neighbourhood or put on an online yoga class (I’ve been into Glo Yoga lately after years of Yoga with Adriene. I love her but I wanted more variety of instructors.) I am in a maintenance phase with weight training which means I get to lift at levels that are enjoyable for awhile; it feels good to be back at the gym.
Notable: The biggest thing this week is that I’m getting my car back today! It’s been at the dealership for 5 months due to a defect in the battery, and because it’s an electric car, that is tantamount to replacing a whole engine. The battery took months to get here for reasons that are not clear to anyone involved in the process on my end – but it’s done! And I’m going to Nanaimo this morning to pick it up. I hate to be so attached to a physical object, but I *love* my car and I’m so happy to be getting it back. (Pictured below the day I brought it home in May 2019).