Hello and Happy New Year!!
We spent New Year’s Eve doing English Contra Dancing in a nearby town just 10 minutes away. There was an intro dance lesson from 07:30 to 8:00 pm for beginners. It had been quite awhile since both my husband or I had danced the Contra dancing, mainly because I worked evening shift. The request for attendees was to bring a dessert to share for 11:30 pm. I decided on pumpkin cake which I baked in a Bundt pan, and glazed with white drizzle frosting.
When we arrived, there was a table to pay the entrance fee, and across the room were a set of long tables on which we saw 2 big punch bowls, one with ice water, the other a fruit punch concoction, and some bowls w/ snacks and packaged cookies. We thought this was where “the dessert to share” goes, so my husband put the pumpkin Bundt cake there.
About 1 1/2 hrs later,I noticed that our Pumpkin cake was moved to the outside of the main hall to another table.
To do Contra dancing, there is an experienced “caller” who announces each of the dance steps, she explained the moves beforehand and called out the changes in dance steps.
Some of the terms, are, ” ballast and swing”, ” hands four”, ”
Alamand ” , ( taking your , current partners hand and turn around). At the beginning, the ladies and gentleman ( or gals and guys) line up in 2 long rows and then the dances are broken up into sets of 4 or 6 all down the line. Your partner for the particular dance stays the same, but during the dance, you change positions moving along down to the right, until you get to the end of the line and then reverse.
I found that 1. this is good exercise, better than any aerobics class or “Body Burn” DVD exercise, and 2. I preferred to rest and catch my breath and dance about every other dance. I did one set of the English Country dance in which there was many ” ballast and swing”, that I became dizzy just as the dance ended and Was walking to the chair area.
Another few things, I have done for the New year is sign up for some programs with our local library, culinary classes and a new book club. I plan to sign up for computer classes,as well.
There is a new book club with a cookbook theme called, ” the Bite club”. They started last month. The cookbook for January is Mark Bittman’s Food Matters. Once you pick up the book from the Reference library desk, there is about 3 weeks to read it and be prepared to discuss the book. It is optional to cook a recipe from the month’s cookbook. I plan to read and find something for the members to taste. I’ll post and let you know in a future writing here.
The week, the USA is experiencing Polar Vortex:
How is the weather where you live?
Last weekend, the temperatures were a comfortable 40’s to 60’s. While visiting a relative, a cousin mentioned that colder weather was on it’s way.
Here in the Northeast, both Monday and Tuesday was the warm- up of 20’s. My own rules for dealing with colder temps are wearing the ” Cobbie Cuddlers” brand of long johns and long sleeve top. Then a regular patterned long- sleeve top, a lightweight sweater is the final layer, along with the thermal winter coat with hood.
Wednesday dawned with slightly colder temperatures, and I would have gladly stayed indoors in the evening. Last week, I signed up for a Culinary class at the library to learn how to use Royal Icing to make decorations for cakes and cupcakes.
Today, was the coldest day. Early morning temperatures for 6:00 or 7:00 am was in single digits, 9 degrees with a windchill of 2 degrees or lower. Knowing that my week had been busy thus far, I decided to stay home indoors. Parts of our townhouse are drafty near the windows where the living room sofa is and also in the kitchen with the glass patio doors. One of these years, we’ll arrange to have new replacement windows and Patio door. When my husband got home from errands and appointments, I asked to try putting the boxed plastic that originally designed for a patio door, just use this and see if it makes a difference. It helped a little; I still rely on the space heater placed next to the sofa in easy reach. To decrease on the electric heating bills, the Electronic thermostat is only set at 70, and 68 at night.