07.01.11.

❝ I like when good things happen to me, but I wait two weeks to tell anyone because I like to use the word ‘fortnight’. ❞
—Demetri Martin




.▲.



:Happenings-


. Some old friends came over on Tuesday. We chatted about the "old days", had an indoor nerf-gun war, went out for frozen yogurt, and then ended up in Target... dancing ballet through the aisles.


. My doggie, got rather sick Wednesday, and was still feeling ill Thursday. He seems to be doing much better now though. He was off his food, and wouldn't drink, or do his "business". I sent my dad to the store as a last resort to pick up some doggie ice-cream. Yeah, it exists, and it's peanut-butter flavored. It took some willpower not to eat some myself. Thankfully, doggie was very interested in being spoon fed ice-cream. Soon after he got an appetite back, and started drinking again. He seems to be a lot better, but seeing as we never found out what was causing him to be so ill the whole family is keeping an eye on him.


. I've started reading The Great Gatsby for the first time. I really don't know how I managed to not read it during high school... I'm really enjoying it, and am glad to be reading it with nerdfighteria as a part of John Green's new nerdfighter book club.


. I just got home from the post office. Those of you who have been expecting things, including my lovely swap partner Honora, should be getting mail shortly.
Thank you again to everyone who joined the swap. Mailing deadline is the 22nd of this month so you've all still some time to get those packages put together and in the mail. I do hope you're all enjoying yourselves!


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:Lemonade-


I mentioned last post that I've been making lemonade from scratch a lot this summer, and I promised I'd share the recipe, so here goes.

I modified a recipe I read in the current (June/July) issue of Bust Magazine. They listed many variations on the classic lemonade, one of which was a mint lemonade, and that's the one I made and modified.

Here's how I make it...

:Ingredients-

6 large lemons, enough for 1 1/2 cups of juice
(Okay, large lemons aren't always easy to find, and they can be pricey. I recommend going to a Trader Joe's if you have one in your area. They have bags of lemons and limes for a dollar and change. Sure, you have to use more lemons, I end up using between 8 and 10 lemons, but it's cheaper!)

2 limes

6 cups water
(I like using filtered or *gasp* bottled water. Where I live, the tap water is heavily treated so it tastes like chlorine and other nasty chemicals. If you're fortunate enough to have some yummy tap water at your disposal HAVE AT IT. It's cheaper, and better for the environment! Unfortunately, I lack yummy tap water...)

1 cup sugar

1/3 cup finely chopped fresh mint leaves
(I like spearmint)


:Prep-

Combine sugar and 1 cup water in a saucepan and heat over high heat (don't let it boil) until sugar is dissolved.
Take off heat and set aside to cool. (you just made simple syrup!)

No comes the fun part: lemons.
Squeeze lemons over a measuring cup until you have 1 1/2 cups of juice.
I hand squeeze them over a strainer into the measuring cup, but if you like pulp and don't mind picking the seeds out with a spoon you don't need a strainer. I suppose you could also use a juicer, but where's the fun in that?
After you have 1 1/2 cups of juice squeeze in those two limes!

Chop up the mint and add to the simple syrup.

Get a large pitcher and add the remaining 5 cups water, lemon/lime juice, and mint simple syrup. Stir well and refrigerate until chilled.
Once your lemonade is cold, fill a glass with ice, stir the lemonade, and pour some into you glass! Enjoy! I promise it's delicious. Perfect for summer.


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:Beat the Heat-


Kaylie recently made a vlog about ways to beat the summer heat. Living in Arizona myself I found it very helpful. I also realized that we Arizonans are fairly used to crazy hot temperatures (did you know they're predicting a whopping one-hundred and nineteen degrees for tomorrow here in Phoenix?), and so have found some creative ways to keep cool.
I thought I'd add my personal tips on keeping cool during the summer months. It may not be one-hundred and twenty where you are, but it's probably still hot. (Unless you're in Australia, in which case I envy you for having winter weather right now.)

:Amy's Stay-Cool Summer Tips-

. Keep the lights in your home OFF during the day. They add more heat than you know. Instead try opening the blinds a bit to let in some natural light. Watch the blinds on the west side of your home though. During the heat of the day having those open will likely add some heat to your house.

. Turn on ceiling fans, oscillating fans, and the like. Be sure to dust ceiling fans before you turn them on if they haven't been used in awhile. If you don't your house will get very dusty, very quickly.

. Avoid hot meals. Skip your regular bowl of oatmeal and grab a fruit bowl and some granola. Instead of a hot lunch try a salad. Same goes for dinner something summery and not hot. You'd be surprised how many yummy cold soups exist.

. Don't bake. I know, I know, bloggers love baking. It's cookies and cupcakes all the time, but that oven only adds to the summer heat.

. When you want a snack/cold drink go for something fresh. Lemonade, Popsicles (maybe I'll share a homemade fruit pop recipe next?), applesauce, iced tea, snow cones. Avoid cold creamy treats. Ice-cream and milkshakes are yummy and cold, but they're heavy and creamy too so they won't be as refreshing as their non-dairy alternatives like sorbet and the smoothie. If you're dying for something creamy try a vegan ice-cream like Tofutti's ice-cream sandwiches. They're not as heavy as real ice-cream and still have a yummy creamy taste.

. Wear sunscreen. How does that keep you cool? If you wear sunscreen you're adding an extra layer of sun protection to your skin. The heat and sun won't affect it as much. You'll find that your skin won't burn in more way than one.

. Opt for sheer flowy clothing. Sheer flowy fabrics in whites, creams, and light neutrals will keep you cool. Most summer days I feel cooler in a sheer long-sleeved white blouse than I would in say, a tshirt.

. Invest in a facial moisturizing spray. Companies like Evian make cute, travel sized spray bottles (don't worry it's not aerosol. the ozone layer will thank you.) of this water and I-don't-know-what-else-but-it's-awesome liquid. Spray some on your face and it keeps you cool for quite awhile.

. If you have long, or even shoulder length like me, hair look into some cute, casual updos and pony tails. Keeping your hair down will keep you warm, and that's no good!

. TAKE COLD SHOWERS. This is good for so many reasons. Your bills will be lower because you aren't heating water, which in turn save energy and makes for a healthier happier planet, it's better for your skin because it closes your pores, and it's fantastic for your hair. Oh, and it keeps you cool.

. Let you hair do it's thing. Don't use a blowdryer,e or heat tools if you can avoid it. Your hair looks lovely the way God made it, it doesn't have to be flat-iron straight all the time. In fact, this will be a nice break for your hair. All those blow-dries are wearing on it and making it dry.

. Swim. Run in the sprinklers. Have a hose fight with your little brother. Invest in a super soaker or two.

. Don't spend too much time sitting around. When your body gets tired it only adds to the lazy-hot feeling. Work out a bit, and take a cool shower afterwards.

. Do indoor/air conditioned activities. Window shop at the mall, see a movie, visit the library.

. And my personal favorite: turn on your ceiling fan, open the blinds just a crack, put on a record, and take an afternoon nap on top of the covers!

any favorite ways to beat the heat?


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I'm going to go read some Gatsby and drink some green tea lemonade.
Or those of you residing in the U.S., enjoy your Independence Day weekend! Celebrate some. :)

:

5 comments:

  1. Oh my gosh. 119 freaking degrees. It was 95 degrees here today and I was dying! I can't even imagine... Those are certainly some fantastic tips though. I'm down with eating a bunch of fruit. Hair in permanent messy bun. Uniform of shorts and a tank top. AND COLD SHOWERS. Yes.

    I'm torn between whether or not I should read The Great Gatsby. I want to, but I really need to read the required AP English books... and we're reading Gatsby later in the year too! Agh, screw it. I will. I can't not.

    I'm glad your doggie is feeling better! :) Sick puppies are a very very sad thing.

    Woo package swap! KAREN, IF YOU'RE READING THIS, I AM HALFWAY DONE WITH YOUR PACKAGE NOW. ;D

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  2. Firstly, sorry I live in Australia! Laughs... With that said, its real cold here, -5c (23f)! Definitally makes me thankful for cooler temperatures when its that hot (119f!) over there.

    Glad your puppie is feeling better, its terrible when pets aren't well. Pets are a large part of the family.

    Also, muchly enjoying collecting things for the swap, even if it is a little hard to think of Summer when there is frost on my window.

    Have a great weekend!

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  3. Lovely post. Hope your dog is doing well! I can't wait to try out that lemonade recipe. I love your tips--especially the last one. I do that more often than I'd like to admit. Like today...but on my floor. Oh well, that's what summer is all about!

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  4. LOVE your poster!

    i loved the story about you and old friends.
    yay for package swap, i am nearly finished with mine for lizzie!! eek, so much fun!

    lemonade. yum. :)

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  5. I want a Spock poster! And doggie ice cream...who knew? Hope he is feeling tons better. The Great Gatsby is fantastic, I remember reading it when I was younger, might have to give it another go. I'm working on my swap package, but I've only just started really, have to try and think of some inventive stuff to send!

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Thanks for taking the time to say hello <3