July 2016: something new each day

It feels as though July was a bit of a lazy month – things I was already booked in to do, or emergency random things. Or perhaps it’s just getting easier to do new things!

  1. Did a flower-arranging workshop. Very relaxing and lovely! The best thing was that I didn’t care that everyone else’s was better than mine, because I loved mine so much!13528675_1017633934985473_4733260273587251638_n_kindlephoto-641661
  2. Cooked sautéed potatoes, and set up my profile and a cabin on Camp NaNoWriMo.
  3. Made marshmallows. They went a bit wrong because I used golden caster sugar (it dawned on me too late that this would mean they wouldn’t be white) and I used a tin that was too big so they were far too thin instead of the cubes they were meant to be. I still ate the shallow yellow mallows. First time using egg white power and liquid glucose. FB_IMG_1468612653810
  4. Did my friend’s one sentence fiction writing challenge. This involved writing a sentence based on the day’s cue word from her July list. Today I wrote days 1-4.FB_IMG_1469913512492
  5. Bought and ate rollmop herrings and Polish lunch salad. I love a bit of vinegar but eating these together did give me a massive coughing fit.IMG_20160705_200532
  6. Saw a new musical – Spamalot. MD’d by my talented friend Lucas.
  7. Here began my four-day Ely Folk Festival stewarding adventure, about which I’ve already blogged.
  8. More stewarding new things.
  9. And more. I had the company of this little cutey again today. Every day involves many new things for babies but this was her first festival and she is a happy natural. FB_IMG_1469914225064
  10. And more (last day). And – not connected and with no effort from me – joined my first Meetup group, on Facebook (Cambridge Bloggers’ Network). Thanks Lauren.
  11. Made an optical illusion line drawing. Try it yourself! And then you could colour it in! Extremely pleasing.
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  12. Went for ice cream after work, and a new drink (Crodino – yum), in a new place (the much cosier upstairs bit of Jamie’s Italian in Cambridge). Thanks to Jane for the indecisive emergency non-alcoholic new thing!
  13. Used the steamer function on my slow cooker (broccoli). It worked! Slightly annoyed this has taken me years to try – but pleased this has made me get round to it.
  14. Tried a new drink: Rock Shandy (non-alcoholic and yum again).
  15. Watched the First Night of the Proms. I only cried twice. (If they ever make a Bond film of my life, that can be the title. I don’t know why, if they make a film of my life, it would be a Bond film, but who knows what’s round the corner.) I have dipped in and out of the Proms before but not sat down and watched the first night. I knew the Tchaikovsky and Elgar bits but not the Prokofiev bit. Lovely. Also woke myself up from a nightmare shouting ‘Help!’ (Actual sound: ‘Mruorgh’.)
  16. Posted a prompt post on my blog. Don’t think it worked. Parked a bike (not mine) in my work’s bike shed. This involves negotiating a ramp down to a basement so more exciting than it sounds, but not very exciting.
  17. Took a new route in Ely: Beech Lane. This turned out to be a bit of a lucky detour and a route to a good new thing, as well as filling in a gap in my mental map of Ely. I’d been meaning to try Cambridge Open Studios today as one of my new things but after heading to Cambridge Botanic Garden I was too hot to walk anywhere else in Cambridge, so just spent three hours there instead, trying and failing to take pictures of butterflies. But the open studios aren’t just in Cambridge City, and I found one in Beech Lane when I got back to Ely. The people there were lovely and friendly and gave this thirsty wanderer some squash and I bought three cards. The artist was Robert G Wells.  The things that can happen just by walking down a new street! Also ordered my first Sainsbury’s shopping delivery online, which was a waste of a new thing that had been on my list since day one but it was a bit urgent.IMG_20160717_191916
  18. Cooked Pad Thai. From a kit, as it was an emergency late one. It was quite nice but not as nice as in a restaurant. It is one of my favouritest dishes so I ought to try it from scratch, really.
  19. Amended the time slot on my Sainsbury’s delivery. Tiny but a schedule change that vastly improved the structure of the following day.
  20. Used a drill! Not dissimilar to using a mixer. Saw a new group, Classico Latino, performing in the sunshine at ‘Sounds Green’ at Cambridge University Botanic Garden (finally making good use of my ‘Friend’ membership this month, my sixth new thing of the year!)13726590_1029642663784600_548055957102923466_n
  21. Watched a live screening of a Shakespeare play. This was Richard III, performed at the Almeida Theatre but I watched it at Cambridge Arts Picturehouse. Amazing cast.
  22. Listened to a Dutch lullaby. I listened to this one, then this version which isn’t quite so sleep-inducing.
  23. Commented on a stranger’s blog. This blogger has been doing a sketch every day since 2010. 2010! Wonder if I’ll still be doing this in six years. I will have done all the things by then. All of them.
  24. Hosted a DIY party. It was nice weather so a lot of outside tasks happened. I don’t think I did anything new apart from the hosting part but other people did new things! It reminded me how much I like having gatherings, something I’ve stopped doing and need to start doing again. Oh, I did help a child – my littlest niece – do a wee on an actual toilet. We are progressing together. Stress. She’s so tiny compared to a toilet. Just waiting for the ‘aunt drops niece in toilet’ nightmares to begin. Also the stranger replied to my comment on his blog!
  25. Contributed to a crowdfunding campaign. Not just ANY campaign – raising the final funds for the lovely choir’s first concert! You can contribute and buy advance tickets. Please come! It is even Shakespeare-related, one of my small ongoing themes this year. Also commuted to work via the Botanic Garden. This was only possible because I had the morning off – sadly it isn’t normally open at 8:00 a.m.
  26. Used the talky satnav thing on my phone while walking. I switched it on by mistake – I knew where I was going and had only looked up the route to calculate how long it was going to take me and whether I needed to get my skates on. It was a bit embarrassing and amusing at the same time and it kept making me jump.
  27. Tried two new drinks in cans (San Pellegrino Chinotto and a Brewdog beer – failed to write down which one but I am going to guess Dead Pony Club, both yum), and saw another new band, Ímar, at the Botanic Garden again (last night of Sounds Green).
  28. Accepted a kind offer of seeds in the post from a stranger on Twitter. I’ve seen her on the telly but she hasn’t seen me on the telly. Lesser teasels. Super exciting. Just need somewhere to plant them!
  29. Had a conversation with a (different) stranger on WordPress, the first stranger to comment on MY blog! Also did a new sort of IT testing at work, User Acceptance Testing. It’s not a new thing but a rare thing that something at work takes me LESS time than I expect.
  30. Tried vichyssoise. I ate it cold and I did quite well but won’t be having it again without heating it up (in fact I will have this one again and heat it up because the flavour was nice, just couldn’t cope with the texture and concept). Inevitable, really, that this didn’t work out – sometimes there is a good reason why you haven’t done things before and the thought of cold soup always made me shudder.
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  31. Caught a baby newt while pond-dipping!
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Failed to make a dent in Camp NaNoWriMo or keep up with Jacqui’s sentence a day challenge but I’ve only failed this time, not forever.

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