Friday Favorites

March 25, 2013 | My Jottings

These favorites of mine have nothing to do with Friday, especially since today is Monday. I like these things every day of the week, or at least almost every day of the week. It’s just that I rarely pass up a chance to employ a little alliteration, so Friday Favorites it is. Even though, as I said, today is Monday.

I know. Don’t ask.

I’ve said this before but it might be worth repeating — Honeycrisp apples are my favorite apple. They’re pricey right now since the season is over, but I buy them anyway. Crisp, juicy, and tart-sweet, I eat one of these every day, sometimes paired with a slice of Swiss cheese, or a dollop of peanut butter. What is your favorite apple?


I’m always on the lookout for a brand of pen I can latch onto and call my own. I need a pen with a large point — fine point pens don’t glide smoothly or quickly enough for me. This pen by Bic is called Velocity and it’s my current choice. It does leave the occasional blob of ink because the point is so large, and I’m not crazy about that. If I find another one that writes this well and is blobless, I’ll make the switch. Do pens make a difference to you? If so, what pen do you prefer?


This is my favorite peanut butter, and I eat some every day. Sometimes I just put some Smucker’s on my Honeycrisp apple slices, other times I spread a little peanut butter on toast. This is the kind that comes separated, and you have to stir and stir the oil and the ground peanuts together very well before you can use it. My OCD method is this: stir carefully and deeply over and over with a butter knife, making sure you don’t displace any oil so it runs down the side of the jar. I hate that. After you stir and fold and stir and fold, then you replace the lid snugly and store it upside down in the refrigerator overnight. Then the next day you can turn the jar back over and you’re good to go. Do you like peanut butter? What kind do you buy?


I’m not much of a makeup person. I do wear it when I’m going out someplace fancy, but even then I don’t wear nearly as much as I did when I was young. A lot for me these days would be concealer, a touch of eye shadow, soft liner, eyebrow pencil, mascara and lip gloss. That much would make me feel a bit clownish, even though I’m sparing when I apply it. Most days I just use eyebrow pencil (because looking like a Caucasian Whoopi Goldberg is not something I aspire to in my old age), lip gloss and Estee Lauder finishing powder. It’s translucent, and it softens the ruddiness that has crept into my fair skin after a dozen or two blistering sunburns when I was a teen. This finishing powder is hardly noticeable, but I notice a difference when I wear it. Do you wear makeup every day or just occasionally? Or not at all? If you do wear cosmetics, what two or three products do you wear most often?


About eight years ago my optometrist did a little test on my eyes to see how my tear production was going. I figured the ducts were just fine since shedding tears could be an almost daily thing for me. Open my Bible, cry. Read a greeting card, cry. See the below zero temperatures outside, cry. Walk on my wonky right knee, cry. See my husband declining, cry. Think of God’s many blessings, cry. Read a loving text from a friend, cry. (In fact, our family had a little joke about my mother’s propensity for crying about happy and sad things, and we used to sing this song from Sesame Street to her and it would make us all crack up. Now I think the song could apply to me.) Anyway, my eye doctor said my eyes were not making an adequate amount of tears and asked me if I’d experienced dry eyes of late. It made me ponder, and it hit me that when I get up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night and my eyelids are stuck to my gritty eyeballs, that could be a tear production problem. So now I use Systane, and it’s a Godsend. I especially need it at night, and have learned to put a drop in each eye if I wake up to go potty, or to tell Michael he’s only dreaming, or to move Mildred away from behind my knees.


I’ve been using Norwex Antibacterial cleaning cloths for about six weeks now and am totally sold. They actually kill bacteria because they have silver in them, rarely have to be washed, and enable the user to clean household surfaces with only hot water and no chemicals. If you don’t know about Norwex (and I don’t sell the products), try watching a couple of demonstration videos on youtube — they’re easy to find.


This is my favorite lip gloss. Or I guess it’s lip balm by C.O. Bigelow. I’ve used a lot of lip glosses over the years (I remember the first I was ever allowed to use when I was about 12 — it was called Yardley Pot o’ Gloss — anyone remember that?) This one is not too thick and sticky, not too liquidy. Do you use lip gloss? If you do, what’s your favorite?


And this is one of my favorite things to do….to get away for a weekend with my husband to a cabin on one of Minnesota’s 30,000 lakes. These cabins below are where Michael and I are going very soon, just for a short break. They’ll look a little different than they do in the photo…there will be snow on the roofs and the lake will be frozen over, but we plan on mostly staying inside anyway. We’ll enjoy the fireplace, the quiet beauty all around us, sleeping in past 5:50 a.m., and maybe I’ll take a book. Ha. No maybe about it.  🙂

roy lake cabins 2705-174- copy

And lastly, this is my favorite baby. Her name is Louisa and she’s my eighth grandchild. Can you believe that sweet grin of hers? Do you have a favorite baby in your life? I’d love to know about him/her!

Photo 50

And now, to my favorite blog readers, I wish you a joyful week full of some of your favorite things!


  1. Kay in Cornwall says:

    Good morning, Julie! And it is such a beautiful morning here in Cornwall – a lovely blue sky with no clouds! We can alo see a U.F.O. in the sky (a.k.a. the SUN!!!). 😉
    * My favourite apple is the Russet apple. I love the nutty flavour.
    * Like you, I like to use a pen with a thicker point. When I was a Teaching Assistant in primary schools I used a Berol Handwriting Pen. It was the pen supplied to each pupil and adult and I find that my handwriting is much improved when I use it. I also learned how to write using the Nelson script that the children were taught and it also improved my writing no end.
    * Peanut butter? Oh yesssss please! (‘Nuff said!) 🙂
    * Last year I found that my eyes were often streaming wet for no apparent reason. At the optician’s I was told that this was, strangely enough, a symptom of dry-eye. Since then, I rarely use eye make-up, which is a shame because I like to use a little eye-shadow, soft liner and mascara. Perhaps I should look for a hypoallergenic range. I like to wear a little lipstick, and I have a definite preference for browny-red shades. My most recent purchase is a lipstick from Aldi! It’s called ‘Mocca’ although it’s more pinky-red than brown. Sometimes I use a tinted moisturiser for foundation, but I don’t wear powder.
    * Those cabins look fantastic! Alan used to part-own a timeshare chalet in Cornwall, set in beautiful woodland. I went there just the once with him before we decided to sell his share in it because the yearly maintenance became so expensive – almost enough to fund another holiday in itself! Also, every time he went there, the pressure was put on to upgrade, upgrade, upgrade.
    * As to your last question – of course my favourite baby is my little grandson, Samuel David (almost 11 months now). He has had such problems with the naevus swelling on his lip making feeding difficult. But now he’s on beta-blockers, the swelling has greatly reduced. Dear little Sam, he is such a happy little soul.
    * My favourite blog? This one of course! 🙂

  2. Just Julie says:

    Your comments are always newsy and well-written and full of goodwill, Kay. Thank you. I have never eaten a russet apple — sounds good. And with the very fine blogs you read (and have introduced me to) I shrink back from your compliment, but do say thank you for your love and kindness. 🙂

  3. Ganeida says:

    My favourite apple is a Pink Lady: sweet, juicy, crunchy ~ all the ingredients of a really good apple. I like them with all sorts of different cheeses but not peanut butter.

    I like a really fine point nib on my pens. I have a very heavy impression & write a lot so I like my grip to be roughed in some way. I also like calligraphy pens ~ just because. 🙂

    I don’t do make~up & such because I hate having anything at all on my hands or my face. It drives me insane! And I’m allergic. But I think the tactile issues outweigh the allergies.

    No special babies just now…

  4. Just Julie says:

    I like Pink Lady apples too, Ganeida. I knew you didn’t do makeup but with those eyes? You don’t need any! No special infants right now perhaps, but many babies, if you consider your ministry and what is to come. 🙂 xxoo

  5. sue raimo says:

    I was struck by your reference to the fact that you cry so easily. As someone who does not easily cry, I am attracted to those who have the “gift of tears”. I fell in love with my husband because he weeps when he prays. Most of my dearest friends (including you) cry easily. I envy this gift and enjoy it more now than I have in the past. Experiencing my emotions with the accompaniment of tears makes me feel more fully alive.

  6. Just Julie says:

    I am always struck by the depth of your life, your words, your gift of encouragement, and your walk with the Lord, Sue. You are one of my treasures. Thank you. xxoo

  7. Tauni says:

    I am taking a brief moment of time to get caught up on your blog (had to read the last three/four posts). Thought I would respond to this one ~ my favorite apple hands-down is Fuji apples. I eat one almost every day (I also love Ruby Red Grapefruits, YUM!). As for pens, I use the Pentel Rolly C4 ~ it is a four color pen. I love it because it has a comfy rubber area where I grip it and my arthritic hands don’t feel so bad after I have been using it. I need four colors as I am doing so many things it is a way for me to keep track of what area in my life it belongs, red for urgent business, green for non-urgent business, blue for my personal stuff (cuz I really love blue!) and black for other things like reminder notes until i can get it into my ipad. I am trying to put everything into my ipad now as it is compact and usually with me.

    I too have to use eye drops, mostly due to contacts and long periods of time at the computer ~ am getting better at taking eye breaks though ~ and I use Genteal for severe dryness at night. I will also wake up with my eyes feeling like rubbing against sandpaper at night. And during the day I use the same product for moderate to severe as I use them often with my contacts in.

    Have never tried the wipes, but will hopefully soon. I am all about no chemicals! Love the idea of using water only. Your endorsement is good enough for me!

    Lip gloss ~ been wearing it as long as you have been ~ same stuff too. I love the CO Bigelow and will often get the ones with the mint extracts and a little color for daytime use and the no color at night.

    My favorite thing to do is usually anything with my husband ~ which is a real switch for me ~ but I also love to garden. and hang out with my Grans of course!!

    My favorite baby is really not a baby anymore. She will be two in July. Time does fly by doesn’t it. I will admit I have a couple of very cute grand-nephews but one I have not met yet ~ I know him from his mom’s facebook posting.

    My favorite blogger is you ~ though your site has propelled me into a few others I like too. Just not enough time to see them all!! And speaking of time, time for me to get back to work! Love you ~ will check in soon!

  8. Just Julie says:

    I looked up that pen Taun — looks very efficient! And I hadn’t heard of GenTeal — I think I might try that as well. Your little grands are so beautiful, Tauni. Thank you for your comments. I have had more than one person tell me they love it when you comment on my blog, and look forward to reading what you say. xxoo

  9. Shari C. says:

    Love the picture of you and Louisa, Julie!!
    Love Pink Lady apples, too!
    Living in Washington has made eating apples a whole new wonderful experience 🙂
    This is going to be really weird…but one of my new found favorites is kale! It’s been growing in our garden for this whole last year and the baby leaves taste really good.
    And I must always include berries in my favorite lists 🙂
    Bruce has been growing some sweet raspberries and blueberries. I love the wild blackberries that grow just about everywhere around here in the Seattle area. And being a Californian girl at heart, I must include my love for strawberries 🙂

  10. Just Julie says:

    How wonderful to have plentiful berries where you are Shari. And I remember all the roadside strawberry stands we had in SoCal growing up… Such a part of childhood! God bless your Easter Shari…xxoo

  11. Jessica says:


    I eat the same peanut butter (except the crunchy variety) and I HATE when the oil runs down the side of the jar. I’ve gotten a lot better at mixing it without this happening but I’m going to definitely try your method!!!

    Also, I like Pentel RSVP medium point pens. I also like Sharpie PENS, but I don’t know that that’s what you are looking for. You might try the Pentel ones. I like that they come in different colors too.

  12. Just Julie says:

    Jessica, I’m going to check those pens out right now. Thank you for mentioning them! xo

  13. Susan Krageschmidt says:

    So, your peanut butter is also my husband’s favorite, If you like the honeycrisp you should look around for the Pazazz or posssibly the Sweet Sonya apple. You have connected to my daughter in ways that none of us will know. I am crying right now. Love u so.

  14. Just Julie says:

    Thank you Susan! I will look for those apples. I won’t even tell you how much I paid for 5 Honeycrisps the other day. Terrible! But they were sooooo good. Love you and was so happy to see Zoe. xoxo

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