Passing Fancies ~ August 2020

Reading: Emily Dickinson’s Gardening Life by Marta McDowell, a wonderful combination of biography, (horti)cultural history, poetry, and period illustrations.

Audio: My friend T. and I have decided that this is a moment to revive the 1970s “easy listening” genre.

Video: We just started Lovecraft Country.

Eats & Treats: So many blackberries! Superiority Burger gelato.

Drink: Sicilian-style salted lemonade, served at our local bakery on weekends.

Garb:  New (used) Anna Sui sunglasses. Masks from Birdiepurl and various Etsy sellers.

Beauty Products: Chantecaille had a big sale and I got a lavender eye shadow, a deep violet eyeliner, and a rosy Lip Chic lipstick in rose-themed John Derian packaging.

Pleasure: Having our internet restored (and even improved) after a week-plus without it. Finally getting a haircut…after 6 months.

Plans: Getting ready for our workplace to reopen in September. This is a major event! Wish us luck.

Image: Henri Meunier, August. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. M15514.9


  1. I have a retired English professor mother whose life centers around her garden. So, I appreciate the sharing of that title! Here are some tips for dealing with hurricane aftermath that I hope you never have to employ in the future… When there’s even a threat of a hurricane, I launder every towel in the household because being short on clean towels in the recovery is not good. Invest in crazy long extension cords: ingenious communities are good at spotting the neighbor whose power was restored early and rigging up something up to protect meds that need to be refrigerated for any sick neighbors. Finally, my own invention: counter tea! Caffeine withdrawal is not fun in this time. If it’s too awkward to do sun-brewed tea, you can put a tea bag in a cup of room temperature water and let it sit on the kitchen counter for 30 minutes to an hour. The resulting tea is quite respectable on the caffeine front until you can get a real cup of coffee. Never was I happier in an aftermath than when I had a still-functioning gas stovetop that allowed me to use my little, Italian espresso maker for us and our neighbors.


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