weeknotes 6/22

– today’s sunset was stunning!

– netflix! we resisted it for years, but this year we expanded my brother’s account to fit in my parents and he offered us the extra profile that came with it. so far, we’ve watched speed cubers (unexpectedly sweet), spirited away (i’m 90% sure we’d watched it before but neither of us remembered the story) and the power of the dog, which i was dreading to watch but turned out surprisingly nice.

– biked into town for the first time this year, for a run to the crafts shop and a few other loose errands. i’ve had a sweater in my needles for over a year now, and i want to finish it soon, before it gets too hot for sweaters. the lady there was super nice, and the weather was perfect for cycling. it reminded me that i should leave the car at home more often.

– my hair was becoming a rat’s nest, so i tried a new hairdresser in town after a few recommendations from local friends, and it turned out ok! i’m super lazy with my hair, but it does feel nice to have it cut and painted. plus, now i know all the gossip in town.

– we tried our hand at pizza toast, and matcha tiramisu, both japanese-inspired dishes and both wonderful!

– there’s an environmental fund in portugal that subsidises improvements that make houses more energy efficient, and some months ago we applied for a refund of our new A+ fireplace. it got accepted this week, so at least we’ll get some of that investment back. yay!


CTM PR8 caminho da amendoeira

some pictures from the picturesque PR8, a 11km circular trail around alta mora that goes through some hills with almond trees. it’s perfect to visit this time of the year!

the first time we did this trail some years ago with friends, the ribeira do beliche had so much water we had to take our shoes and pants off to cross it… not this time. the extent of the drought in the region in getting scary, and there’s no end in sight to it. :(


weeknotes 5/22

week five already, 10% of the year is done! 😅

– the big thing this week was celebrating chinese new year, which i’m quite fond of. we watched the gong strike 12 on CCTV, wrote some poetry to stick on the door, cooked all our repertoire of chinese dishes for friends and played hanabi in the place of fireworks. the cooking part was a lot of work, but it was so worth it!

– usually guests bring dessert when they come over to eat, but since we already had a chinese dessert planned, our friends showered us with swedish sweets instead (packed inside an ikea bag, no less). we rarely eat gummies these days, and much less liquorice ones, so this was a lovely treat!

– february is the month of letters in my calendar, and i’ve been taking time each day to write a postcard to a friend or relative. it’s been really nice to slow down, surrounded by stationery and stamps.

– we walked the “almond blossom” trail on the weekend, and it was glorious. it’s peak bloom season, and raining snow petals everywhere!

one second everyday

january 2022 — one second everyday

january! the first month of the year saw us quietly recharging at home, getting reacquainted with our routines and the things we missed the past few months.

i read a couple of books, we caught up with friends over online dinners, played hanabi a few times, enjoyed all the almond trees blossoming everywhere, hung a couple of birdhouses, good boostered, watched some chinese series and celebrated chinese new year. it was a great month, with quite a few new dishes and birds spotted too.


weeknotes 4/22

– in preparation for chinese new year next week, we went to the chinese supermarket (all the way in albufeira) and came back with bags full of goodies! i can’t wait to cook many of these — i really must get on with it, because my cupboards are practically overflowing… it’s a good problem to have, and i like having a kitchen filled with possibilities.

– so, in the spirit of using things we have in the pantry, i’ve made mapo tofu! next time, i’ll need to tone down on the chilli, because it was a bit too intense for me. 🥵

– on the way to the chinese supermarket, we stumbled on a british supermarket, so we had a look as well. i don’t know why supermarket trips to foreign stores are so exciting to me, but it feels like they’re filled with wonder and delights. to me, the british are kings of sweets, and we brought some packs of sweet stuff home, along with eccles cakes and wensleydale cheese. yum!

– i got my booster shot, woohoo! while it feels like everyone around us is getting their immunity by getting sick these days, we’ve been able to stir clear of that so far and have instead vaccinated ourselves. feels pretty good! :)

– every year, a postcrosser friend in china gifts me a hobonichi weeks. it’s a slim paper planner, with super lightweight pages, and the right combination of calendar + free space that i like. these gifts have been going on for 4 or 5 years now, and i’ve grown attached to the planners, looking forward to a new one as the year ends. i never know which one he’s going to get me though — it’s always a surprise. after a 2 months’ trip through the mail, my 2022 hobonichi finally arrived this week, and i was so happy — it has pandas on the cover and the text inside is all in chinese (turns out, this is a special edition that is only available in china). i love it soooo much! <3