BuJo-Planner Lists

Adventure Ideas

Books I’ve Read

  1. Rosemary Gladstar’s Medicinal Herbs – A Beginner’s Guide
  2. Mercedes Lackey’s “Owl-” trilogy (Darian’s tale)

New Restaurants

  1. Fresh Side (Amherst MA) – The pad thai T-roll and spicy chicken T-roll were the best, but the pho was pretty good, too.

Entertainments (Movies, Concerts, Shows, etc.)

  • The Secret Life of Pets – 1/12/17 – Cute, a little funny. Likely, once was enough.
  • Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox – 2/3/17 – Calvin Theater, Northampton MA – Not as satisfied with this show as I was with the last time I saw them.  Music was still awesome, but the show felt rushed (entire show was 2 hours, for $44 per ticket); I missed the emcee acting like it was an old radio show, and Scott Bradlee himself doesn’t tour anymore (what??).  As I said, the music was still great, but I felt the whole “PMJ Experience” was lacking.

Completed Projects

  1. Remade blue scrap yarn circle afghans; Actually know how to crochet a flat circle now!
  2. Finished mending for Saera H.
  3. Replaced a bag zipper for Katie O.
  4. Finished crochet Slytherin sweater



Tropical Dance Vacation 2016

Last month (Feb.) my aunt Lea sponsored me to go on a dance trip with her, called Tropical Dance Vacation.  It’s a week on St. Croix, in a resort on the beach near Christiansted, with dinners included and contra dancing under the dance tent every night.  It’s organized by a dance caller I know, and the band is Wild Asparagus.

This was fabulous.

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The only thing I would change (other than NOT getting in an argument with my aunt over $5) is to have more young people around.  I know there are reasons why, but I was surrounded by people mostly my parents’ age all week, and I really missed the energy of my younger dance friends.

I’ve had a hard time adjusting back to a New England winter.  I went from 75-85 degrees, sunny, with bright colors, to cold, dreary, monochromatic.  Clearly my body cannot thermoregulate any more.  I can’t wait for spring.

Future Plan: Long-Distance Train Trip(s)

So this blog post (titled: “Across the USA by Train for Just $213”) was shared in my Facebook newsfeed, so of course I had to read it.  The author, Derek Low, studied Electrical Engineering & Computer Science, and is now an “adventure traveler & entrepreneur.”  (Relevant in multiple ways!)

Anyway, his post detailed what it was like taking the train from San Francisco to New York City, along the California Zephyr and Lake Shore Limited lines.

I need to do this.  Like, the travel itch is starting to burn…

I’m currently cooking up crazy schemes to take the train across the US, interspersed with some couchsurfing and/or Airbnb to explore a bit along the way.  My sister lives in Oregon, & I think it would be absolutely wicked to take a week or two and go visit.

Of course, I’m not leaving my 17-year-old cat alone for that long, so this is relegated to a back-burner future plan (of which I have many).

But still!  This is now on my bucket list.

Springfield Science Museum

My bestie and I went on an adventure on Aug. 20th (two weeks ago, now, I know) to the Springfield Science Museum.  He’d never been, and I only had fuzzy memories of a school trip, so we made an afternoon of it.  We had some distinctly favorite exhibits…

A tsunami wave modeling display

I swear we spent at least 15 minutes playing with the tsunami wave model display.  I even took a video on my phone of the wave splooshing over the model beach house.  I’m not entirely sure why this display was so fun to play with, but it was pretty awesome.

There was a boa constrictor in a tank exhibit, and I watched him 11891009_1030174817013637_5894708262713751507_nswimming for awhile.  It was utterly adorable when his head was underwater and he exhaled, blowing a stream of tiny bubbles out his 11898676_1030174773680308_4806894912638124658_nnose.  (Alright friends, snakes can be cute.)  An old turtle came up to the glass and posed for a photo for us.  That was pretty cute, too.

There was a convex mirror that we stood in front of.  My bestie is really tall, so it was highly amusing to see him shortened.  We joked that that’s what he would look like as a dwarf of Middle Earth.  I also got some pics of my bestie next to some large creature exhibits, like a polar bear, a Stegosaurus skeleton, and some moose.  It was 11903700_1030174987013620_4515696987971006156_nentertaining, using his height as a scale.

He had some raptures when we got into the geology section; he’s really fond of rocks and stones.  This was really close to the astronomy section, and there were meteors you could touch.  There was a globe that had a layer of fluid on the outside, and if you spun it and then suddenly stopped 11880325_1030174943680291_239246992142687597_nthe outside, the fluid whirled in crazy patterns that mimicked the storms on Jupiter.

Then there was the Impact Simulator.  We’re such nerds.  It was a program such that you could choose the body (comet, asteroid, or iron/nickel), the diameter, density, velocity, and impact angle; and the program would generate a video simulation of the body impacting the planet and what would happen.  We liked finding the ones that resulted in the Earth being completely pulverized.  Because we’re nerds.

The gift shop was decent; we found a Hedwig plushie and a Nagini plushie.  I’ll prolly get stuff for my honorary nieces & nephews when they’re a bit older.

The thing I wish we could’ve gotten to was the planetarium.  We arrived right after they did the last show of the day.  We’ll have to make another trip, making sure to get there early enough to catch the different shows.

Northfield Drive-In

Last night, my bestie and I went to the drive-in movie theater in Northfield (MA? VT? not actually sure what state it’s in) to see Ant-Man and Fantastic 4.  We split a cheese pizza from Big Y and sat in lawn chairs and listened to the projector’s speakers (because we sat right next to the concessions stand).  It was a lot of fun, especially when we were making running commentary.  One of the movies was really good, and I got to wear the shawl I’d just finished crocheting.

This was a lot of fun, and I’m glad I put it on my summer adventures list.  It had been a long time since I’d been there, and they went digital a few years ago, so that was nice.  It would’ve been better with more people, and maybe for one of the last three weekends I can round up enough friends to make it a party.  (Not next weekend, though, because I didn’t necessarily like the looks of the first film of next weekend’s double feature.)

As an aside, my car has been on so many adventures with me that she rolled over 200,000 miles while driving home yesterday.  We cheered that she’s still in such good shape (relatively).


11060161_1019185994779186_5014267095477511846_nYesterday, my bestie and I went to Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory.  It had been awhile since I’d been there, and I don’t think he’d ever been, so we decided to stop by.

There was a very interesting exhibit on our way into the conservatory, with tanks housing brightly-colored dart frogs and tree frogs and beetles and stick11825050_1019186298112489_1389525903142801444_n & leaf insects.

And the conservatory was very, very warm.  And peaceful.

11800012_1019186414779144_5027492581089653344_nMy bestie said he’d like to ask them if they do season passes so he could go back more often; He lives nearby and said he’d easily spend 2 hours a week there.  Now that I know they’re open year-round, I imagine I’ll become a visit more often once winter is here.

Super-Busy Adventure Week!

My series of adventures starts last week Sunday, when I got to hang out with my friend Amanda L.  After lunch at Fresh Side in Amherst (which I’d never been to before), we went to Historic Deerfield to see their fabric & clothing collection, which I hadn’t even known about until I saw a dress on a billboard and decided to investigate.  I got REALLY excited while looking at the historical garb.

Couldn't take pics of the exhibit, so here's a pic of a pamphlet...

Couldn’t take pics of the exhibit, so here’s a pic of a pamphlet…

Then we got dinner (read: ice cream) and I brought her back to her apartment, where I made friends with her roommate’s cat (who curled up on my shoulder bag).  A storm was coming in that night, so I took a few pics on the way home.


Wednesday I got to spend the afternoon with Becka W., whom I hadn’t seen in months.  We attended GCC’s engineering program together.  After lunch we took a walk down her street, and then Becka made blueberry lemon cake.  11264815_1017268581637594_624319767431562435_nAfter dinner on Wed, I dropped off an application to the Greenfield YMCA, to see if I qualify for a reduced-fee membership (*fingers crossed*), before going dancing in Amherst.  While there, I danced more than I’d danced in a good long while (due to getting there earlier), and I slipped a dirty joke into conversation while waltzing with a cute guy, AND I declined caramel brownies at break.  I was really proud of me that night.

Thursday I drove out to Fall River, MA to hang out with Elizabeth R., whom I hadn’t seen in over a year. We caught up while wandering around the shore, which included taking pics of the USS Massachusetts, and some Canadian geese who were chillin’ nearby.11751753_1015529538478165_2147515510914806005_n

When I was trying to fill up the gas tank before driving home that evening, something interesting happened.  The lever that pops the trunk (pulling) and the gas cover (pushing) might be busted, because the gas cover wouldn’t open and then the trunk wouldn’t latch closed.  I finally took a flat screwdriver from the trunk and broke the plastic bit holding the gas cover closed, so I could have enough gas to get home.  The good news is that it worked & I got the trunk to stay closed; the bad news is that the gas cover can’t latch closed anymore.

Sunset driving home Thursday

Sunset driving home Thursday

Friday was the Challenging contradance in Greenfield, which I normally go to because I get paid to be in charge of cleaning up the hall at the end of the night.  I don’t think anything spectacular happened on Friday, other than going with my younger brother to pick out Dad’s birthday gift (a lilac bush, to replace the one we accidentally destroyed as children).

Saturday my friends Johanna F. & Aaron R. got married!  I wasn’t at their ceremony (which apparently another friend officiated on top of Sugarloaf early that morning), but their reception turned into a nice party.  They got catering from Atkins (of which I got lots of leftovers), and rented out the Greenfield Grange hall, and tried teaching their families how to contradance.  Johanna’s parents took a group of us out for dinner at the People’s Pint before the dance.  And, I did not stuff myself stupid on good food.

The band last night (Saturday) was Tidal Wave (from Quebec), and they do not mess around!  I almost got cramps in my calves during dances, they were that energetic.  I’m kinda glad I had to wear my sneakers dancing, because if I’d worn my regular dance shoes my feet would’ve hurt even more.  When I got home I was so hungry & exhausted I was almost sick, and it has been a LONG TIME since that’d happened.  I iced my feet and knees & back when I got home, which was a fantastic idea.

So I got three nights of dancing, and three instances of hanging out with folks I don’t get to see that often.  There’s almost a week’s worth of free food in my fridge now, I’m $30 richer (which should get me some flea meds, and maybe some litter, for the cats this week), and a lead for a potential full-time job.  Can I have one day to relax now, please?