I slipped under the sheets and sighed as I felt my cold body melt into the electric-blanket warmed bed. I piled the pillows up against the head of the bed and settled down to read the last chapter of my book on my Kindle. We’d just arrived at the family farm and reading a book in the big, old bed with the electric blanket pumping is one of life’s greatest pleasures. I clicked the little button on the bottom of Kindle. Normally it just opens to the last page I was reading but it was only showing the home screen.
‘Weird.’ I thought and tapped the library button.
‘Your library is empty – buy books now!’
‘Whaaaatttt????’ I sat bolt upright and frantically started clicking on my Kindle trying to find my books. I’ve been having a lot of trouble with my Amazon accounts recently because of the American vs Australian store situation and as I was trying to get them to sort this issue out they just wiped my Kindle account.
I was devastated. I was JUST about to find out who the killer was and I’d been looking forward to reading that chapter all day. I read an old Women’s Day instead and went to sleep feeling very unsatisfied.
The next day, Amazon still hadn’t found my missing books so I ducked into a bookshop to grab a second-hand book to read. I wandered around the store for 20 minutes and left empty handed.
Do you know why? Because I can’t read books unless they’ve been recommended to me. How are you supposed to pick a book without a recommendation? I went home and checked out my usual book recommendation resources and went back the next day armed with a list.
My life revolves very heavily around recommendations so when I discover something awesome, I like to tell EVERYONE about it. Here’s what I’m loving right now… don’t forget to share yours!
We recently moved from a very well insulated, extremely temperate apartment to a little house where the temperature is almost always worse inside than it is outside. In summer, we sweated while the ineffective airconditioner did dick all to drop the temperature and now we’re shivering on the couch in our down jackets as the same reverse cycle unit fails to heat the place. In desperation one evening, I grabbed our camping thermals (they’re pretty hardcore ones designed for sleeping outside in winter) and put them on. Oh my sweet toasty heaven. My camping thermals have become my new evening comfy clothes and I’m thrilled.
I recently discovered that you can buy a packet of meatballs for about $6 at most supermarkets so on emergency dinner nights I’ve been pan frying meatballs, adding a bag of frozen (but defrosted) veg, a big sploosh of pasta sauce, a handful of cheese and baking it in the oven for a few minutes. It’s a super quick, super easy, and very cheap dinner. Love it.
3. Rooibos Tea
I’ve been having some mild insomnia recently so I’ve switched to decaf tea. Rooibos is naturally decaffeinated and tastes a hell of a lot better than regular decaf. I have several cups with milk per day and I just love it. I grab it from the supermarket, it comes in a red box. If I’m feeling super fancy I’ll grab some loose leaf Rooibos tea from T2 or another fancy tea store but the supermarket variety is also excellent.
4. Shoe maintenance
Mr Smaggle spent a weekend treating all my leather shoes and now they’re good as new. I got my old Ecco boots re-soled last summer and after Mr Smags gave them the leather treatment they’re ready for another winter. I’m down to two pairs of winter shoes this year. My Funkis clogs and my Ecco boots. Perfect minimalist shoe wardrobe.
5. Muji cotton blend tights
I’ve been having a really hard time getting tights that aren’t black and when I saw these at Muji the other day, I snapped them up. They’re a cotton blend with a right angle foot design (so clever because OUR FEET ARE AT RIGHT ANGLES!!! Why isn’t this more of a thing?) and they’re super warm and comfy. I’m definitely going back for more.
6. Grey’s Anatomy
So I used to love Grey’s Anatomy and watched it hardcore for the first few years it was on then the writers strike happened and it got very bad, very fast. I’ve recently started watching it again on TV and I’m really enjoying it. Just a lovely, easy watch that doesn’t take up too much brain power. Plus I’ve always low key loved medical dramas. It’s not something I’ve ever been super aware of but a cheeky episode of ER back in the day was a seriously great way to wind down after a day at school.
I love reusable coffee cups (obviously because I give a shit about the environment) but I don’t like the taste of drinking coffee through hot plastic. Not because I’m weird about toxins in plastic, I just don’t like the taste. I’ve been drinking my takeaway coffees in a small glass jar for that last year and it’s amazing but the lid of the jar has started to shed its paint and I’m just not comfortable drinking coffee with flecks of paint in it. Frank Green now have stainless steel versions of their cups and I’ve finally got the reusable cup of my dreams. It does have a plastic lid but it doesn’t taste like anything and the stainless steel keeps the coffee hot for AGES. I’m in love.
8. Keeping a camping pillow in the car
Confession. I fall asleep in most cars, most of the time. Even if I’m just going around the corner to the shops, if I’m in the passenger seat, I’m probably going to nod off. Mr Smaggle suggested keeping one of our roll-up camping pillows in the car and it’s a lifesaver. If we’re stuck in traffic for half an hour, I have a little nap and I’m good to go. It’s magical. I figure if I’m going to be asleep, I might at as well be comfy right?
9. Listening to classical concentration music on YouTube while I work
I literally plug ‘concentration music’ into the YouTube search bar and play the first thing that pops up. It’s so good. I used to listen to a variety of different kinds of music without lyrics like classic, jazz and electronic but it was too random. This soft, melodic and repetitive music just works for me. It’s boring but it keeps my brain occupied while I’m concentrating on writing.