Holiday cookies
Happy Pandemic Holidays!

Merry Christmas to those who celebrate, and happy holidays to those who don’t! I’ve skipped Friday Five posts lately because I haven’t really had much to write about. But I’m back this week with a few things of interest.

I hope you’re enjoying a safe and distanced holiday season! We usually do a mini getaway over Christmas, but this year we’re staying home and eating meals that we pre-ordered from local restaurants. And of course we’re going to watch Wonder Woman 1984 on HBO Max today!!

I’ll keep repeating myself: wear a mask, keep your distance from others, and wash your hands. The vaccines are trickling in, and we’ll have a new president soon. We’re going to get through this!!

1. Holiday Cookie Decorating Kit: my friend posted about this Nine Cakes kit on Instagram and I had to get one for us! We are absolutely not professionals at cookie decorating, but we sure had fun doing it. The bakery sent such adorable sprinkles! I especially loved the sprinkles shaped like mini gingerbread people and the tiny candy canes. The teeny Christmas trees and stockings were adorable too. And the cookies taste great!

Holiday cookies

2. The Great Conjunction: this Monday—for the first time in 800 years—Jupiter and Saturn appeared closer to each other than usual. John and I tried to see the planets from our roof deck but the apartment building next door was in the way. So we drove down to Navy Yard for a better view of the southwestern sky. Unfortunately, the sky was cloudy and we could only view the planets for a few seconds before the clouds covered them. We decided to try again on Tuesday night and managed to see the planets clearly in the night sky! The below photo is not great, but you can indeed see the planets right in the middle of the shot. Very cool to see!

Great Conjunction

3. My Face Masks: I have a Zazzle shop where I sell products printed with my original orchid photography. Zazzle recently added face masks to their lineup, so I’ve introduced a couple of them to my own shop. I ordered one for myself, and I’m happy with it! The masks come with a flexible metal bar in a pocket at the top so you can adjust around your nose for a better fit. The straps are adjustable as well. I currently have two mask designs in my shop (see the other one here), but may add more if these sell well.

Orchid print face mask

4. Orchid Bloom: speaking of orchids, I finally have a few orchids starting to bloom in my greenhouse! My orchids weren’t super happy for years in the many apartments we lived in. Now that we have a greenhouse they’re finally giving me some blooms, and I’m thrilled! Three of the plants have begun to bloom, but I have at least a dozen more that are going to start blooming over the next couple months. It’s very exciting!

Orchid bloom

5. Eggplant Caponata Pizza: for a long time during the pandemic, we didn’t order meal deliveries all that often. We mostly just cooked or put together sandwiches, wraps, etc. at home. But we’ve started ordering in a little more often, because we want to help support local restaurants. Last weekend we ordered in from Shilling Canning Company and I got this delicious pizza. My photo of the pizza won’t win any awards, but I loved it! We also got a yummy mulled wine cocktail, which I forgot to photograph.

Eggplant pizza