Friday, July 01, 2011

First Day of July

A pink flower I spied on a recent walk

The second month of summer begins! It doesn't really feel like summer here yet in Seattle. It rained a bit yesterday, my heater is still on, and I lit a fire in the fireplace for cheer a couple gloomy evenings ago. I'm longing to wear a sundress and sandals without feeling chilly.

Let's take a few moments to look back through our past month of June. Did you get your housecleaning projects done, appointments kept, sorting and decluttering? Did you spend time with family, time with friends, time by yourself? Summery activities enjoyed?

What things did you miss out on, what do you want to schedule for July, and what do you want to do more of before summer is over?


Strawberry Pop Mold, at Williams-Sonoma

  • Pay bills, rent, mortgage

  • Finalize Fourth of July plans, invitations, etc.

  • If you own specialty ice molds, need to make ice for this weekend? Whether you're making strawberry-shaped ice pops, star-shaped ice cubes or special ice cubes shaped for cocktails, be sure you have your ice ready to go in time for the festivities.

  • Look over your birthday list or calendar for the month. Any birthdays coming up? Do you need to send any flowers, write and mail any birthday cards, shop for and send birthday gifts, or perhaps plan parties?

  • Need to make any dentist, doctor, or vet appointments this month?

  • Is it time to book yourself a haircut, dye, manicure, pedicure or massage? Family members need summer haircuts? Pets need a summer shave or haircut?

  • Look over your budget for the month, preferably together with your spouse or significant other (if any). Are you doing ok on paying bills, paying off debt, depositing into savings? Can you budget in room for entertainment, dinners, fresh fruit, fixing things around the house, gas for going to summer activities, and the occasional movie night or small retail therapy treat?

TODAY'S PROJECT: Provisioning

Weatherproof Fourth of July Bunting, on Amazon

Today I'm doing a few errands, in between working and cleaning up my house to get ready for the Fourth of July.

I'm not doing a whole ton of shopping - just enough to have what I need, but not so much I'm cluttering up my nice home with any junk. I'm getting a few Fourth of July decorative buntings, some paper plates for my party, extra toilet paper with the party in mind, fresh condiments because I recently tossed my old ones out, hot dogs and hot dog buns and corn to serve at my party.

I've also recently cleared out the refrigerator I keep in my garage. There's room for lots of sodas I plan to serve at my Fourth of July party. I don't normally keep soda in the house, so one of my errands today is to pick up orange and grape sodas, some Cokes, a few root beers, and maybe a few novelty sodas for fun.

I'm also stopping by the pet store for bones to keep my dogs busy and happy on the Fourth, a new collar for one of the dogs, and wet food for a treat for the cat.

The last thing I want to pick up is a colorful pot or two of flowers for my front porch for the party.

LOVELY BATH & BODY: Blueberry Body Butter

I'm currently enjoying the new limited edition blueberry body butter from The Body Shop. I took it in my suitcase on a recent weekend away, so now every time I use it and smell it on my skin, I feel like I'm on vacation!

LOVELY BLOGS: Kitchen Simplicity

Here is a nice cooking blog by a Canadian expat mom who lives in Norway. Recent posts I've enjoyed include her colorful layered milkshakes, her maple walnut cake for Canada Day, her chunky cucumber salad and homemade Egg McMuffins. Everything looks delicious and it inspires me to get into the kitchen and cook!

LOVELY FOOD: Ben and Jerry's New Ice Cream Flavors

New for summer, Ben and Jerry's has come out with a yummy Red Velvet Cake, Australia-themed Bonnaroo Buzz, and Late Night Snack (which features vanilla bean, caramel swirl, and salty potato chip fudge clusters). Yum! I'm serving each flavor at my upcoming Fourth of July party.


A Few More No-Bake Fourth of July Treats (Love From the Oven)

Fourth of July Cookie Pinwheel Cupcake Toppers (Bakingdom)

Homemade Strawberry Julius (Baking Bites)

How to Assemble a Cheese Platter (French Basketeer)

Inside Out Neapolitan Cupcakes (Sweetapolita)

Vodka Slushes: My Favorite Summer Beverage (The Devilish Dish)

Red Lentils, Tomatoes and Mushrooms - a Hearty Bowl of Vegan Eats (Worth the Whisk)

Whipped Cream Vodka: A Summer Fling (Grin and Bake It)

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