Currently | January

FEELING | a little bit scattered this month with my aunt’s passing, the severe storms that we had here in California at the beginning of the year, and a quickly escalating work to-do list. The new year has just started, but I feel like time is passing me by right now. How are we already all the way through January?

WORKING ON | a loop scarf for my mother-in-law. I mentioned last month that she had requested a knitted loop scarf for Christmas and while I wasn’t able to finish it in time for the holidays, it is now coming along. I’ve been working on it quite a bit and it’s been nice to have something that I could do with my hands these last few weeks. Knitting calms me.

PARTICIPATING |  in yet another Power Zone Pack Challenge with Tanja and our StreakersPZ team. They offered a 2-rides-2-runs option this time, which was perfect for me as I have been cutting back on cycling a bit for the moment to focus more on running. The theme for the current challenge is “Groovy Zones” and the name of our Team is “Superstreak”. I also completed my fourth PeloFondo weekend. I couldn’t resist signing up for the PeloFondo and pledging some miles to support my Streakers365 team.

HAPPY | about how my half marathon training is going. I’ve been pretty diligent about sticking to my training plan and have been able to execute the runs as prescribed. I’ve been gaining back a little of my average pace, which is exciting to see. I do miss having access to a treadmill though. Sometimes it can be easier to train at a certain pace when you’re forced to hold it steady for a period of time.

COMPLETING | a January ‘Stretch every day’ challenge. This was a little bit of a cheat challenge for me, as I do take stretching seriously and usually stretch after every workout anyway. So the stakes weren’t really that high for this, but I am still glad I still made this a “goal” for January.

BAKED | my sweet yeast bread for New Year’s Day (it’s a Rhineland tradition) and also tried another (new-to-me) recipe for a mixed wheat-rye sourdough bread. It turned out really nice with a soft and airy crumb, but crusty outer crust. Unfortunately, it doesn’t keep as well as my regular bread (which has a higher rye-wheat ratio), but I would still make it again. I just will have to eat it up faster – ha.

EATING | homemade pizza. I am not the biggest pizza fan, but every now and then I get a craving and so we had a couple of pizza nights this month. I love spinach, garlic, and onions on mine. We used store-bought (Trader Joe’s) pizza dough this time, but I think I want to try my hand at a homemade sourdough version next time the pizza craving hits.

BUYING | laundry detergent liquidless eco sheets. I’ve been meaning to try an alternative to regular laundry detergent, which comes in these obnoxious huge plastic jugs, and I am hoping that these detergent sheets (which a) come in cardboard packaging and b) completely dissolve in the washing machine) are any good. Has someone tried these before?

What is currently going on with you?

  1. Oooooh your food pictures are so pretty and delicious looking. It sounds like you have worked hard to make a hard month beautiful on several fronts.

    1. Thanks so much, Sarah. I do try to keep a positive attitude.

  2. That scarf looks so pretty – what a wonderful gift for your MIL! I really wish I had some handwork skills because I do think I’d find it very relaxing. I did a 300-piece puzzle with the kids earlier in the week and was shocked how much I enjoyed it (1000-piece puzzles, on the other hand, make me go crazy).

    I HAVE tried those dissolvable sheets for laundry and was very impressed with how well they worked! Just make sure your hands are dry when handling them (I always tore my strip into smaller pieces before dropping it into the washer), or they can get sticky.

    It has been a rollercoaster few months for our family, but that means there have been lots of ups along with the downs…

    1. Puzzles can be very calming/satisfying :)

      I am excited to hear that you’ve tried these dissolvable laundry sheets and are impressed. That makes me more excited to use them. I’ll report back.

      I do hope your rollercoaster up and downs let up a bit! Fingers crossed.

  3. I have always wanted to try those washing machine sheets also. I have used them at a friend’s house and they seemed to be okay, although the ones she had did not smell so I did miss that fresh clean smell. However, maybe I just need to buy one with scent and that would not be a problem. As far as my clothes being clean, I did not notice a difference. I do not know which ones she used though.

    Once you try them, I would be interested in seeing a review!

    1. I’ll definitely report back!

  4. That scarf is really pretty!
    I haven’t even heard of those washing machine sheets! What an interesting idea. I was thinking the other day of powdered detergent, like Tide, that used to come in a cardboard box. I don’t know if you can still buy it but it probably would not work in today’s washing machines. On the topic of environmental choices, have you ever tried shampoo/ conditioner bars? I have not but I’ve wondered about them.

    1. Yes! I have also heard about the shampoo/conditioner bars and am intrigued to try them. I have not yet, but I think I will :)

  5. Please give those detergent sheets a week or month of testing, and let us know what you think! My question is, are they good for getting really dirty thinks clean, or are they more for just things that have been worn, aka, no real dirt or stains. I’ve thought about getting them, but I always forget. Would love to skip the big plastic bottle of Tide.

    1. Will definitely report back!

  6. Tell me what you think of the detergent sheets once you’ve tried them. I’ve never heard of them but I am very curious.

    I used to make homemade pizza – crust and all – nearly every week and somehow I’ve lost the ability. I made one last weekend when I was by myself and it just tasted like cardboard. Sigh.

  7. I’m sorry things seem to be so overwhelming right now. Fingers crossed that this unsettled feeling passes soon and you feel a bit more settled. Knitting does seem like a great activity to help calm in sort of meditative way. I’d love to see the finished product.

  8. Well, now I want bread!!! This looks delicious. And I love homemade pizza- yours looks so good.
    I’m sorry about your aunt, and yes- I do feel like January sped by quickly.
    I’ve never heard of those laundry sheets! Please give us a review once you try them.

  9. Your scarf is beautiful! I love the rainbow yarn. I feel for all these people affected by the storm. The house with the tree on it, that happened to my family during a hurricane. It’s incredibly stressful so I wish everyone calm as they clean up.

  10. That scarf looks pretty! When it was super cold this weekend, I wore a chunky infinity scarf that I knit for myself years ago. Paul could not believe I made it myself! I haven’t knit since becoming a mom. I’d like to get back to it someday, though!

    I’m currently feeling a little overwhelmed at work, too. I know that I am going to be taking on more client meetings with my coworker retiring this spring. I hope we can shift some work around so I don’t get totally burned out!

  11. I eat pizza a few times a week, so I am astonished that you eat it so infrequently! I could probably take a page out of your book, haha.

    I hope things settle themselves for you soon. Grief can be so difficult, and especially so being far away from your family. <3 Take care of yourself, friend!

  12. I am only using dissolving detergent sheets. I switched probably two or three years ago and it is the best. Less packaging, much lighter to to carry from the store, less space needed in my cupboard. I only wished it. would also come as wool detergent and even softener. I would be at peace. But it is a start.
    unfortunately our machines asked for powder detergent for cleaning measures. So I also keep some of those brick things handy.

    I am sorry to hear of your aunts passing. Even more so that you weren’t able to spend the days with family to grief.

  13. I just bought laundry sheets, too. I’m excited to try them out! Have you been liking yours? And I love the idea of a ‘Stretch every day’ challenge!

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