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September 2013



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Life’s little pleasures...shopping from home, online!

I’m not a shopper. Never have been, unless it's a bookstore or an art supply store! I don’t like crowds, or walking all over malls, or all the JUNK out there. (For me, almost ANY day is "Black Friday" if it involves shopping!) When forced into it, I just like to look for what I need, find it, and pay for it–in and out, like that!

And I’ve solved that problem, mostly, with online shopping. Yes, I support my local merchants when I can (no art supply stores nearby, though!) but I don’t drive to the big mall in the city to shop. I spend more on lunch and gasoline than I do on shipping costs...

Since I messed up my knee 10 years ago, shopping online works even BETTER for me...it’s that or take the folding cane stool. ( I love how they call them "sport seats" on Amazon!   YEAH.  It's not that my knee hurts...)

And look at all these color choices...even camo! Soooo...don't look at the aluminum legs...?

Lately, I’ve found two things I haven’t enjoyed in years, and I couldn’t be more delighted–you can find about anything online if you keep looking!

Because caffeine can compromise your sleep and your bone calcium and I AM of “a certain age,” as they used to say, I decided to cut back on high-octane coffee–but J. doesn’t need to, really, so I wanted to figure out how to let us both have the coffee we wanted, without having his-and-her coffee-makers taking up space in our small kitchen! and then I remembered, years ago, a “coffee elixir” you make in a huge funnel...I HAD one of those! Looked all over, found the base, and a filter, but not the funnel. Soooo...Googling doffee elixir eventually led me to the company that makes them...Toddy. Since I usually look at Amazon first these days, I went there, and low and behold, the Toddy Cold Brew coffee maker! I ordered one and it’s as lovely as I remember. Smooth and mellow...the Washington Post calls it the best coffee ever...

The other thing was Lapsang Souchong tea, which I adore. Haven’t had any in years...the local grocer doesn’t carry it, and it never occurred to me to look online for that! But recently got a new book from Amazon, When Wanderers Cease to Roam: A Traveler's Journal of Staying Put by Vivian Swift and found a quote about my favorite tea, I knew I had to find it.

And did...it just came, and it’s as wonderful as I remember. Taylors of Harrogate Lapsang Souchong

Swift’s book is a delight as well, of course. Full of sketches and watercolors and hand-lettered journal notes, it’s earned a place in my permanent collection of artists’ journals! She wrote “Sipping a cup of Lapsang Souchong tea that tastes like January. Deep. Dark. Bitter. Like smoke from an ancient campfire...” (J. just offered to brew up some scrapings from inside the chiminea for me...smart aleck...)

...and yes, of course I see the irony...the Toddy coffee maker was so I could have fresh delicious half-caff or even decaf, and the Lapsang Souchong is definitely high-test. Hush!


I NEED high-test caffeine, at the moment!  I've been working with my webmasters at morgansites.com to update my webpage and make it more accurate and hopefully easier to navigate.  Feedback is welcome--so far we're just working on the front page at cathyjohnson.info and my free art tips!


Kate, for bone calcium I can recommend pearl powder (I mean natural pearl powder:)
This is the most common substance in Chinese medicine, and it is also good for many other things as well.
I'm sure you can find it online, too ;)
REALLY!? How cool! It's like a fey remedy...I'll look for it. I try to remember to take Calcium Citrate, but pearl powder sounds much more exotic...
yes, sounds like a star dust :)
but it really improves your skin, hairs and nails, Marylin Monroe used to take it :)
I could use it! I think it's a tad late for the Marilyn approach, though... ;-)
well, you never know :)
this is a good link in English, I think
I love it! And I'll have to admit to using pure olive oil left under a full moon on Beltaine eve... ;-)
now it's time to prepare for Winter Solstice :)
That's when I really need the olive oil! (And pearl powder too, probably!)
I totally agree. I do not like shopping and I don't understand "recreational shopping" at all, and I rather resent all the ways the world assumes that if we're female, we love to "shop till we drop"!
We make coffee concentrate that way too, ever since I found that perked coffee gave me hives. We have decaf concentrate in one carafe and high-test in the other. It's a wonderful system!
I hadn't made any for years, but OH it is good!
I keep my private stash of Lapsang Souchong tea (purchased in multiple pounds) under lock and key - even better than Earl Grey (also purchased in multiple pounds) on cold, grey, nasty winter days - nothing like that pine smoked tea flavor to warm even the most chilled body and spirit back to life!
Joseph HATES it, so...more for me! Isn't it great? I love Earl Grey, too...