Category Archives: 60 New Things Project

Peach Galette  22/60

It wasn’t until I took this peach galette out of the oven that I realized it was another new thing.  Too late to get pictures of making the dough or cutting up the fruit.

At the Farmer’s Market the Sunday before Memorial Day, I got some yellow and white peaches and asked for ripe ones. These days I have to point to the items I want instead of picking them out myself by touch and smell.

A few days before that I had seen the Smitten Kitchen recipe for Any-Kind-Of-Fruit Galette. And I remembered she had described the dough as being one that beginners excel at.

It really was pretty straightforward, and the results were delicious, especially with vanilla ice cream.

Thank you for checking out this post.

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The Continental Divide 21/60

Rem and I extended our March vacation to New Mexico by a few days, when we decided we were more comfortable driving home rather than flying.

You can stop at roadside attractions, like this one in Arizona.

I missed a good opportunity here.  But I only thought of it now.

I should have poured water onto the ground to see which way it flowed.

These three signs made it a little tricky to tell where exactly the divide was. The first one was probably the official one as the other two were outside souvenir shops.

One shop was closed but it had a pretty view from the parking lot.

We stretched our legs, and at the next shop Rem bought a silver bracelet. He’d been searching for just the right one, looking in Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Taos, and little towns in between.

I left a painted rock at the official Continental Divide marker and we got back on the road, flowing towards the Pacific Ocean and home.

Thanks for the visit.

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Rio Grande Gorge Bridge 20/60

Rem and I visited the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge near Taos back in March. The day we went, it had snowed in the morning and there were snow flurries on the drive out to the bridge. If you look closely you can see a few specks of white snow in this picture.

I’ve seen so little snow in my life, that it’s always exciting to see it falling.

I’m not sure if this sign means this is the most beautiful Steel Bridge designed by the New Mexico State Highway Commission, and it is a striking sight, but I don’t think I could label it the most beautiful Steel Bridge.  I kind of have a soft spot for the Golden Gate Bridge

It also lays claim to being the 10th highest bridge in the United States per Wikipedia. Walking on it made me a little wobbly kneed. We both kept a firm grip on our phones as we looked down into the gorge. The sidewalks rumbled when trucks drove by.

This was a great place to visit and an easy one for practicing our social distancing skills.

If you are keeping tabs on my 60 New Things Project, I admit I’ve fallen behind on my reporting. But the good news is that I’m still doing new things. I will try and get caught up on the blogging end of it soon. Thanks for stopping by.

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Cliff Dwellings 19/60

When Rem and I were talking about our trip to New Mexico (back in March), there may have been mention of the Cliff Dwellings near Taos. But, to be honest, I was really looking forward to this. Also shopping for turquoise and silver jewelry, and some great New Mexican food.

But when venues starting closing in response to the Corona virus, our plans changed day to day.  I’m glad we were able to visit this site, a National Historic Landmark, though I see it closed days after we were there.

Walking the trail towards the steep rock face of the mesa, it was like stepping into the pages of National Geographic magazine.

According to the website, Puye Cliff Dwellings were occupied by the Pueblo from approximately 900 A.D. to the late 1500s. 

As we drove in from the Welcome Center to the cliff dwellings and visitor’s center, I was tickled to see a map pointing out Frijoles Canyon.

The day was beautiful and we were both glad we had made the drive and taken the time to try something that was, for us, quite unique.

Thanks for the visit.

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DIY Haircut 18/60

I don’t really have good before and after pictures. But a few weeks ago, my hair felt like a floppy mess. So very much on the spur of the moment, I decided it was time to give myself a trim.

I looked for a YouTube video but lost patience with trying to find a helpful one. I figured how ever bad I cut it, hardly anyone would see it.

With a mirror, hair clips and some crummy little scissors, I just went for it.

This (above) is probably two weeks before I cut it.

I convinced Rem to trim the very back. He was apprehensive and wasn’t thrilled with the results, but I was glad to have the help.

Here is the after.

I wouldn’t want to cut it again without a professional cut in between. I had a great cut, but if I did it again myself, I’d be going from my choppy, amateur job. Kind of like when you make a copy of a copy of a copy, it starts to get distorted. But I don’t regret it.

Thank you for stopping by.



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Visit Pilgrimage Site 17/60


When we were on vacation in New Mexico, we stopped at this Pilgrimage Site in Chimayo, between Santa Fe and Taos. Because of the Corona virus, the site was nearly empty.  Our visit was not during one of the annual religious expeditions to the shrine, and we were there as sightseers, not pilgrims.

Concern over spread of the virus cancelled the Holy Week pilgrimage, but Wikipedia states “Each year some 300,000 people from all over the world make pilgrimages to the Santuario de Chimayó during Holy Week.”

There is evidence of these visitors, with offerings in the form of notes, figurines, candles, painted rocks, crosses and, most of all, rosaries, tucked into every nook, cranny, fence, altar and tree in the place.

A few other people were wandering around the large but mostly empty grounds.  A giant container of hand sanitizer graced the entry of the chapel where we stopped.

It is hard to imagine this place with even 1,000 other people milling around.

It is traditional for pilgrims to take some of the holy dirt available from a hole in the floor of one of the chapels. The church doesn’t take any position on the curative powers, but they do truck in dirt from nearby hillsides, which is consecrated, to replace the dirt that is removed.

Although formerly seekers of cures would eat the dirt or rub it on their bodies, now most people just keep in in their homes.

Even if you are not a person of faith, this site is worth a visit if you are in the area. There are many statues, mosaics, and murals as well as the offerings of so many pilgrims.

And if eating dirt doesn’t appeal, you can always stop at nearby Rancho de Chimayo and enjoy some traditional Chimayo red chili. It may not be miraculous, but it will be delicious.

Thank you for the visit.

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thredUP 15/60

When I decided to try Stitch Fix in January, I knew I needed to do a little closet cleaning. In fact, it was while exploring different combinations of tops and skirts, that I decided to try on all the clothes in my closet that I was not wearing on a regular basis.

As I’m sure is the case with many of you, I grab the same tried and true pieces from my closet most days. But because of losing weight*, some of the items I was grabbing no longer fit. In the glow of fitting into smaller sizes, and the excitement of shopping in regular instead of plus size stores, I’d made a few purchases that ended up not really working out.

I tried each item on and looked at fit, comfort, fabric and what I could wear it with. I tried to be honest with myself and realistic about what I would wear. The big Try On session went so well, that I expanded it to include my dresser.  As expected, I ended up a with a stack of clothes to sell or donate.

A friend told me about thredUP, an online consignment and thrift store and though I wasn’t sure how much of my stuff was resale quality, I decided to look into it.  I could get a Clean Out Kit sent to me for free and if my items were rejected by them or didn’t sell, they would donate them.  It seemed like it was worth a try.  I would have been dropping them off at the Goodwill, but if I could get a little money (to turn around and spend on some of the cute, gently used stuff at thredUP), it seemed worth a try.

Their site says they usually accept only about 40% of the items submitted, but I didn’t have any expectations.  I was happy to have gone through my closet and weeded out the items I wasn’t going to use, and if down the road I got a little something back; bonus!

I signed up and had to wait awhile for my Clean Out Kit to arrive.  It included a large, plastic mailing bag, already addressed and ready to go.  I just filled it with the items I felt had a chance of being accepted, and sent it off, at no cost to myself. Then more waiting.  Lots of waiting in fact.  It took quite a long time to receive an email saying my kit had been received and then even longer for it to be processed.  But I decided to wait to post anything here until my items were processed.  At long last I got the message that they had accepted 60% of my items!

And friends, I’m thrilled to say that one of the scarves I sent in has sold and I made (are you ready?) NINETEEN CENTS!  If you have have higher quality items, trendier items, more in-demand items, you might make EVEN MORE! Think of the possibilities. If and when other items sell, I could make more moolah.

It was easy and it was fun.  Could I have made more through another consignment or online seller – maybe.  But I didn’t really have to do anything, and that was appealing.

Thank you for visiting.

* Since my gym is currently closed and I don’t have a scale at home, I don’t know how much weight I’ve gained during the Corona Virus Shelter At Home, but I do know I’m grateful not to have to wear anything but leggings and T-shirts these days. Don’t worry, I didn’t get rid of anything that would have made a difference.




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Visit Iconic Church 13/60

When we pulled off the main road, I saw this building and felt a flicker of recognition. We were looking for a restaurant we’d seen listed in the notes at our Airbnb. But first we stopped to take pictures of the historic San Francisco de Asis Church, Rancho de Taos.

Though it was quite cold, I was excited to get out of the car and take a closer look at this adobe church that I recognized from both an Ansel Adams photo, and a Georgia O’Keeffe painting.

The back of the church faces the road and it is that view (first photo) that both artists captured.Rem and I walked around the church taking pictures and shivering. By this time, all the churches were closed, due to the virus, so we didn’t see the interior.I’m not sure what our dinner was that night, but the iconic architecture of this church will be one of my memories when I think of Taos.

Thank you for your visit.

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Meeting Mo, the Macaw 12/60

A few weeks ago, I got to hold Mo, a macaw, in Madrid, New Mexico.  Madrid is a little town along the Turquoise Trail – the scenic route from Albuquerque to Santa Fe.  The town name is pronounced MAD-rid, not the traditional Spanish pronunciation. We stopped in town for lunch. This was in an earlier age when you could still eat in a restaurant.  This one had instituted mandatory hand-washing for all patrons before entering the dining room, and tables were 6-feet apart.

After lunch, which I don’t even remember, we went to Shugarman’s Little Chocolate Shop for dessert. I’ll get back to Mo, but first I have to say that this chocolate was SO delicious!  We tasted a few different types of chocolate bark before buying some and I just wish we’d bought more. 

20200403_222032Anyway, back to this sweet bird, who was murmuring his name to us.  He was so chill. We also met his people: Ron and Tim.  They told us that Mo’s full name is Yax Kuk Mo (pronounced Yash Kook Moe) which means “beautiful blue Macaw” in the Yucatec Maya language.  I thought we were at least a little bit birds-of-a-feather with the turquoise streak in my hair, but to be honest, I looked kind of faded next to Mo.


Thanks for the visit.


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Snow! 10/60

It snowed overnight in Taos where we we stayed! We went out in our pj’s, just grabbing some layers plus shoes and hats.

It was pretty magical to see the dusting of fluffy white snow over everything outside, as if it had all been sprinkled with powdered sugar.

We scooped up some clean snow and made snow ice cream, concocted with sugar packets and the tiny cups of half and half from the fridge of our Airbnb. It was delicious!

After a proper breakfast, the snow was already melting. We walked down the street to this pretty little adobe church. Although it was clear and sunny, it was still quite cold, especially for us, with our inadequate gloves.

I’m glad I got to see snow on our vacation.  We didn’t have the trip we anticipated but waking up to snow in the front yard  and experiencing the unique crunch when we stepped on it, and the crisp, crystalline air after it had snowed, was an especially delightful experience and a significant NEW thing to add to my list.

Thanks for stopping by.

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