Things I’ve Been Loving

The Chateau Diaries

The Chateau De Lelande, a home built in the 16th century is located in the heart of France.  Owned today by a woman named Stephanie it has been lovingly restored and brought back to life over the 15 years she has owned it.  Having spent her life in London Stephanie dreamed of living in one of the grand French Chateaus from the fairytale stories of her childhood.  At the age of 29 and after looking for a home to buy in London to no avail, she found she could own a Chateau in the French countryside for the same price as a flat in Britain.   I am really enjoying her channel and seeing how she’s transformed what was a run down home into a beautiful lively estate where she now hosts guests from all over the world, weddings and workshops.

You can follow Stephanie’s adventures at Lalande here:

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Tomato Paste In A Tube

Finally! someone read my mind.  Every time I need to use tomato paste in a recipe it breaks my heart to open a can, use 2 tablespoons and resign myself to the fact that the rest will end up going into the garbage.  During my shop this week, I was so pleasantly surprised I even found tomato paste since a lot of the shelves have been empty for a few weeks.  Not only did I find it but they’ve brought in this new brand in a tube! Hallelujah! Now I can store it in the fridge and use as much or as little as I need, guilt free!.  Oh the things that bring me joy.

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Growing Culinary Herbs

I love having fresh herbs to use in my cooking.  Dried herbs are great for some recipes but the satisfaction of making a Pomodoro sauce with a bunch of fresh licorice scented basil or sprinkling fresh cut cilantro over a soup is just one of those little things in life that make me happy.  I like to pick a leaf of any herb I see and rub it in my hands just to inhale their wonderful scents.  I’ve been growing my herbs on the window sill and my cilantro is pretty happy there. Once it’s warm enough I’ll move them out to my sunny patio.

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Whiskey In A Teacup

Sweet Home Alabama, Legally Blonde, Wild, Election, Four Christmases.  Yes, all Reese Witherspoon movies.  I’ve been a fan of hers for many years.  She’s always seemed to be such a positive person and someone who I’ve looked up to over the years.  She’s an actress, a producer, owns her own clothing line and now has a great series on Netflix called Shine On where she interviews woman she looks up to (she loves Dolly Parton as much as I do!).   For my wedding shower, my sister Jaqueline gave me Reese’s book  Whiskey in a Teacup which narrates her life growing up in the south and all the lovely details that being a true southern lady entails.  Recipes, anecdotes, family scrap books and monogramed everything, I’m about 3/4 of the way in and am really enjoying learning even more about this amazing woman.

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Moroccanoil Colour Depositing Hair Mask

I’m sure like a lot of you out there, not being able to go to our regular “upkeep” appointments may be a little worrisome.  No pedicure, no eyebrow threading and no root touchups??  Luckily I’ve always known how to do these things for myself but have gotten into that habit of paying to have them done.  My nails are not a problem, I actually find it quite relaxing to throw on a movie or some music and do my nails (I have a crazy large nail polish collection).  And I’m fine keeping my eyebrows groomed for the time being.  My hair on the other hand… I mean I’ve been pretty lucky that while most of my friends have been dying their greys since their late twenties, I never even got any into my 40’s!  just last year in 2019 was the first time I EVER dyed my hair in my life.  Now, as those pesky greys have started to creep up on me, I’ve been seeing Charlene at Bambu for my roots but have had to find a solution while we’re social distancing.
Moroccanoil released this hair mask which deposits colour into your hair.  It comes in Cocoa (a dark brown which is what I used),  blonde, red, turquoise, black and silver.  All you do is wash your hair, towel dry it, apply the mask and comb it through to distribute it evenly and leave it in for 7 minutes.  I left mine in for 30 because it won’t make the hair darker or anything if you do.  It is a mask after all so once rinsed and blown out, my hair was shiny, super soft and a nice dark chestnut colour.  It didn’t cover all my greys but I don’t have very many so it will definitely do until I see Charlene again.
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Ozark Season 3

This show just sucks you and doesn’t let you go from the beginning.  It’s dark and tense and I need to shake it off after every episode but damn if it isn’t really well written.  I’m sure I included season one in an old favourites but the way the story and characters have developed is genius.  Just watch it.  That’s all I’ll say.

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Piano Lessons

I’ve played the piano since I was a child with some long pauses in between over the years.  I never liked performing for others. Playing for me is a time to focus, feel the satisfaction of learning a new piece and hearing it come together.  With all this time on our hands I’ve made it a point to keep a schedule which includes cleaning our home, planning and cooking meals.  I’ve also been studying Tarot, diving deeper into my yoga practice, taking the free online Nikon camera course and playing the piano.   Musescore has a bunch of free downloadable sheet music.  I’ve been working on a couple of pieces including The Meadow from the Twilight movies and this one:  Always Remember Us This Way by Lady Gaga from the movie A Star is Born.

https://musescore.com/user/16129966/scores/5521131

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At Home Teeth Whitening

Once a year, I like to do the entire Crest White Strips program.  For 10 days you apply the strips to top and bottom teeth and come out with pearly whites a few days later.  The only thing is that they’re a good $50 +.  I found this whitening gel at London Drugs and picked it up for like $6.  It’s a peroxide gel that you leave on your teeth for 5 minutes and it gradually whitens teeth.  I like doing a teeth whitening going into the summer, it makes you look healthy and goes great with a tan haha.  I sound like Elle Woods now.  My dentist does tell me though that I have nice white teeth for “someone my age”. I’ll just take that as a compliment.  Sigh.

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This concludes my recent faves and keeping on my daily schedule it’s Yoga time!
Love,
Jennifer

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