Monday, May 25, 2020
Memorial Day Weekend
Happy Memorial Day everyone here in the US! It's the unofficial start to the summer here in the US. Originally we should have been in the Finger Lakes for the weekend as we had a reservation for a stay there which had to be cancelled.
It's a bit of a weird one this year with everything going on. But now that we have outdoor dining opened back up in CT you can almost pretend that things are going back to normal. Our restaurants opened back up this past Wednesday (May 20th) - outdoor dining only. We weren't going to go right away but did give in on Thursday and had dinner at Rosy Tomorrow's. They are following all of the safety measures and it was nice to be out and about again and be able to talk to some of the people we normally would see much more often.
Saturday was rainy and cool so we just ran some errands, went to the grocery store and put one of the dressers that we had bought together. Still need to do the second one. Those things are always a pain cause they come in a million pieces. Anyway, Sunday we went to Hopkins Vineyard near Lake Waramaug and sat outside, enjoying a bottle of wine. Beautiful weather. Afterwards we met up with our friend Tyler from Two Steps. Normally we would see him at least once a week as he bartends at Two Steps but since they closed for the quarantine we hadn't seen him. So it was great to hang out and catch up. Two Steps hasn't opened yet and probably won't for a little while until things are more back to normal.
Today, Monday - Memorial Day, we slept in and then headed to Hawk Ridge Winery in Watertown, CT. They also opened up for outdoor seating to enjoy their wine plus they also have food available. We had their buffalo chicken dip as well as jumbo shrimp stackers (jumbo shrimp, cucumber, tomato & mozzarella with a curry/chipotle sauce) When we were done there we headed back to Danbury and decided to stop at Marketplace to finish off the day. I had their blackened tuna tacos with a salad and some delicious passonfruit sangria. Now I am really full.
In a bit we will probably continue binging "Hollywood" on Netflix. We started watching that yesterday and really enjoyed it. We also finished "Dickinson" on Apple TV Plus which was really good.
Tomorrow is Tuesday and my last week of furlough begins for me. Back to work a week from today - June 1st. It's been such a weird time. I have gotten some stuff done but honestly I don't even know where the time has gone. My Hello Fresh delivery was damaged last week so that never arrived. So hopefully my box gets here this week so I can try their recipes.
Letter/Mail Update: Received a letter from/owe a response to: Kimber/Canada and Nina/WA. A letter went out on Thursday to Celia/MA.
Monday, May 18, 2020
Furlough Week 2
Week 2 of my furlough has started today. Crazy how fast the first week went by really. I did do some things around the apartment, vacuumed, decluttered upstairs, made egg salad, etc. Also been getting my steps in - been walking every day. And also been reading a good amount. I think I finished book #17 for the year last week. Also started on the show 'Belgravia" on Epix (through Amazon Prime). Think Downton Abbey. So yeah, the week went by pretty fast and was a nice, relaxing break.
Haven't heard anything back from the unemployment office. Hopefully soon. I am sure they are probably still backed up so we shall see how long it takes.
This past weekend, on Saturday we went back to Millbrook Vineyard in Millbrook, NY. The weather was really nice. Sunny and in the 70ies with a little breeze. It was great sitting outside weather. We bought a bottle of wine and had brought some food from Millbrook Deli (I got the most delicious spinach cranberry grilled chicken wrap -- soooo good), perfect day to sit outside in the picnic area and enjoy some delicious wine while eating our food.
On Sunday it was pretty nice too, a little cooler but still nice. So we thought we could head to Hopkins Vineyard in CT but they had closed their picnic area in anticipation of re-opening on Wednesday (20th) Connecticut is opening their restaurants on the 20th, outdoor dining only, with strict social distancing and other measures in place. We will see how that goes. Anyway, we ended up just taking a ride and then eventually picked up food from our local diner Elmer's and hung out at home.
This week I am also getting my 1st "Hello Fresh" meal kit delivery. I have been intrigued by these meal kit deliveries for a while now and decided to finally try it out. My recipes for this week include 'Steakhouse Pork Chops', 'Paprika Chicken with a Jammy Pan Sauce' and 'Lemon Butter Barramundi'. Hopefully the dishes turn out well - fingers crossed.
I also still need to declutter my closet and dresser. So that will need to be this week's project as well. I also ordered two new tall, skinny dressers for the bedroom to help with having some extra storage space so we can declutter and clean up some of the stuff that is just sitting around without a real place to put it away.
Letter/Mail Update: Received a letter from/owe a response to: Kimber/Canada, Nina/WA and Celia/MA. A letter went out on Saturday to Eunice/Malta.
Monday, May 11, 2020
Snow in May, Furlough and more
The weather has been absolutely bonkers. Last weekend we were sitting outside and I was even getting a little sun burnt and this past weekend it snowed. Yes, SNOWED. Crazy snow squalls with super huge snowflakes. In our area it didn't really stick but in a few towns north of us they did get a thin layer with an inch or a little more of snow. So weird. That was Saturday. It was pretty cold (well obviously since it snowed) and also windy and just not pleasant at all. We went to the store and picked up some breakfast from a local diner and otherwise didn't really do too much.
Sunday luckily was a bit better. It was still very chilly in the morning but did warm up as the day went on. We met up with our friends John and Jana. We haven't seen them in probably 2+ months. They have been pretty much sheltered in place, adhering to all the rules, etc. Same as us really. So this past weekend we decided to go for a socially distanced hike with them to a park about 20-30 minutes away. And then they invited us over for some food at their place. We sat outside in their outdoor backyard area at their apartment building and it really was a lovely day. It was nice seeing them and to catch up in person.
Today is my first day of furlough at work and it does feel a bit weird, it being Monday, and me just sitting around. I did vacuum this morning already and am planning on making a lemon herb egg salad for lunch in a little bit. And maybe in the afternoon I will have some more tea and read some more of my book. Going to make the best of the next three weeks of my furlough and enjoy the time off. Will try and do some productive things like decluttering my closet and dressers and answer my letters. Will also try and go for a walk every day like I have been doing during my lunch break.
I did apply for unemployment already but when it actually pays out of course remains to be seen as they are of course super behind with all the additional unemployment claims flowing in due to COVID 19. When applying for unemployment I needed my Green Card number. And when I went to look for it, it was nowhere to be found. I usually always keep it in the same place with my passport. I tore apart everything and was starting to be convinced that it somehow vanished into thin air when I finally found it hours later -- in the dresser drawer underneath the one it is usually in, hiding in between my socks and underwear. Fun times.
Letter/Mail Update: Received a letter from/owe a response to: Kimber/Canada, Nina/WA and Eunice/Malta.
Monday, May 04, 2020
And it's Monday again. I should be thinking about packing my suitcase and getting ready for my trip as my flight to Europe would have left on Thursday. I was supposed to fly to Trieste, Italy where my parents would have picked me up and we were going to spend some time in Croatia before heading back to Austria. Needless to say none of that is happening. My parents have cancelled their Croatia trip. Actually they postponed it for September. Maybe, just maybe I will be able to go and see them then but it's all a bit up in the air right now. I have tried requesting a refund for my flight but since my flights were booked as a non-refundable fare the best I can do is receive a travel credit (to be used by January 2021) minus a $100 processing fee. I guess it's better than not getting anything at all.
This is the last week before I go on furlough for three weeks at work. And needless to say it's going to be a busy week. A lot to finish up and take care of before the end of the week.
This past weekend we had some gorgeous weather so that was something at least. On Saturday we went for a walk at a nature preserve in New Preston, CT and on Sunday we did our weekly grocery shopping in the morning and then headed to Millbrook Winery in Millbrook, NY. They have a pretty picnic area by a pond with very well spaced picnic tables so it was the perfect place to sit outside, drink wine, enjoy the beautiful weather and still be socially distanced.
It was still pretty nice today but going to get quite a bit colder again for this coming week. Well let's see what this week brings. Kind of weird it's May already. All of this quarantine stuff started in mid March here in CT so we have basically been at home since then. Let's hope we can get back to some kind of normal at some point soon but I am really not too sure when that will actually be.
Letter/Mail Update: Received a letter from/owe a response to: Nina/WA and Eunice/Malta.