Thursday, August 16, 2018

THURSDAY'S THOUGHTS


VIA PENCIL & PAPER CREATIVE DEVELOPMENT CO.

FEELING: I got my nails done last Sunday for the first time in six weeks and it felt really GOOD! While getting a manicure, I witnessed a gentleman escort his 88-year-old mother to the salon to get a pedicure (she left feeling feisty and ready to hit the casino afterward to "find a new husband"), along with a grandfather who wanted to treat his 6-year-old granddaughter to an afternoon mani/pedi. Sure, it's nice to have my phalanges dipped in Clambake again, but the warm and fuzzies I left with was the real treat.

THANKFUL FOR: Jordan Ferney's creative gem The Color Factory has made its way East and will be opening in NYC on August 20th. The original install in San Francisco made me weak in the knees, but I knew I'd have to win the lottery or something to actually see it in the flesh. Now that the pop-up color experience has taken residence in The Big Apple, I've decided I HAVE to go and witness the magic in person. Now to decide on a weekend??? Thankfully it didn't take much to get Flyboy on board. The prospect of running into Jerry Seinfeld while eating brunch at Jack's Wife Freda really seals the deal.

THINKING ABOUT: We spent the past three days camping out at the house in the name of potty training, but I'm starting to get stir crazy. What's the secret to going out during this new phase? A lot of people I know throw the training toilet in the car and take it along with them in addition to a spare change of clothes. Are there any other tips and tricks I should know about? 

READING: Max can't get enough of Bees: A Honeyed History. I originally bought it this Spring, after seeing it on display at Terrain, because the illustrations are delightful. I didn't anticipate that our resident toddler would want to sit and sift through the pages on a daily basis and talk about bee factoids nonstop. I know I'm biased, but some of the details he remembers are impressive.


LISTENING TO: I could listen to episodes of How I Built This with Guy Raz for hours. His interviews are just as captivating as they are addictive!! Have you listened to the episode with Jeni Britton Bauer—the illustrious founder of Jeni's Ice Cream? Squee! I finally got around to this one a few weeks ago and was tickled to learn that it was her love for perfume that inspired her to begin experimenting with ice cream flavors. How cool is that?! If you're like me, listening to Raz's interviews will leave you with the urge to take a few more risks and be a little bolder. The moral to each episode?? Don't forget about your daydream.
 
WATCHING: A few weeks ago, while I was visiting my parents, my mom and I started watching the HBO series Sharp Objects. My mom has read the book, so she already had a good idea of what the show might entail, but I went into it clueless and immediately got hooked. This is typically not the sort of genre that holds my attention, but there's just something about the all-star cast and the way the story is piecemealed together that was enough for me to reactivate our HBO Now subscription. Are you watching?

EATING: I'm hooked on dried mango at the moment. It seems to satisfy my sweet tooth most nights, but I've also learned that not all dried mango is made the same. I prefer the Trader Joe's variety, but I've dabbled with options from Target and Safeway as well. Why it's taken me almost 33 years to discover this goodness is beside me, but I'm thoroughly jazzed to have it currently stocked in our pantry. Now, what other deliciousness do I need to know about?? I'm having a serious case of food FOMO. Go on and dish.

LOVING: These striped New Balance sneakers are going to be a momsemble MUST! How long before yours truly pulls the trigger?? 


Enough about me. How are you feeling today? What are you up to? Thanks for stopping by!! 

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Wednesday, August 15, 2018

LIFE'S LITTLE DETAILS


"THE DETAILS ARE NOT THE DETAILS. THEY MAKE THE DESIGN." — CHARLES EAMES

It's been one helluva week. Let's dive into the details, don't you think?!
  • Last Wednesday I got Botox. Flyboy had a meeting, so Max tagged along with me. I was nervous that he might be scarred for life after joining me at my appointment, but he was so entranced by the iPad he had NO clue what happened in the fifteen minutes it took for me to get poked and prodded by the neurologist. Phew!
  • In terms of the actual procedure and its effectiveness, I've been impressed thus far. It usually takes about 7-10 days for it to take effect, but my migraines have been minimal compared to what's been my norm in a typical week over the past year. I'm hopeful and excited to see if the day-to-day quality of life improves as the doctor thinks it should.
  • My primary goals for the Summer included visiting a therapist, finding a solution to my migraines, and POTTY TRAINING Max. Woof! Imagine my delight when, without any prompt, Max declared last Friday night that he was "tired of these damn diapers!" Um... I guess this means we're going to check that third and final item off the ol' to-do list, right?? Nevermind the fact that our spirited threenager sprinkled in his favorite four-letter word into his BIG announcement.
  • Since Flyboy was on-call the previous weekend and we had hopes of going to a peach festival and to Wilmington this past weekend, I told Max that he could wear underpants while we were at the house and pull-ups when we were out and about. I was elated that he was so ambitious, but I had NO desire to stay home again when there was plenty of fun to be had, so we agreed to roll up our sleeves and get to work on Monday morning. He was totally on board and with the help of a hideous Paw Patrol potty, we've had incredible success. My mom always joked that when Max made up his mind and decided to go for it, he'd go all in. I think she was right, because we've had one accident in the past three days and it was primarily because he was afraid to go #2 in his toilet. However, the promise of a remote control Triceratops arriving via Amazon put that fear to rest real fast and it's been smooth sailing ever since. Hallelujah! I've been hesitant to share much about this process on social media because I was certain there would be a "you're the parent, he's the kid" backlash. After almost four years of getting to know Max and his headstrong ways, I should know by now that the typical timeline means nothing with this kid. They say God gives you what you need, not necessarily what you want. I hope that includes a toddler that throws the word damn around every now and then too!
  • A word to the wise. If you see an adorable tee at Crewcuts and the journalism grad/typography junkie in you can't deny a tee that says BIG NEWS, re-think IMMEDIATELY!! Max was wearing his shirt while we were at Lowe's and he was giddy about his Venus Flytrap, so I snapped a pic only to realize that if I posted something like this, people were going to think we had BIG NEWS—like a baby on the way or something, and that's definitely NOT the case. Yikes! Fast forward to later in the week when my child is wearing the tee again and I decide to make toilet paper roll confetti launchers (because Wednesday...) and I go on to share the easy DIY on Instagram only to freak out when my sister says people are going to think it's a gender reveal. Gulp! I adore this shirt, but I need to burn the shirt. Worst purchase EVER!!!

Alright, that's all I've got for now. How the heck are you? I'm dying to know.

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Friday, August 10, 2018

LURVE LOAVE LUFF




Let's get right to it, shall we?

Here's what made me feel all twitterpated, smile contagiously, giggle uncontrollably, etc.

  • Stripes Napkins // Raise your hand up high if you think there should be a rule that ALL napkins look this adorable? 
  • Hot Pink Toiletry Case // Now THIS its the kind of toiletry case I'm talking about!!! You can actually fit A LOT in there.
  • Junit Lamp // Here's hoping this cutie goes on serious sale because I have a dozen different places I'd love to put it.
  • Easy Now Warm, Don't Mess With Cool // Ledford's work was the bright spot I needed. Her vivid colors are just WOW!!
  • Wool Polka-Dot Jackie Cardigan // You know this is going to be a wardrobe staple, right?! How perfect is it in NAVY??
  • All Over The Place Tee // This shirt might summarize my life story. At least it makes being all over the place look cute.
  • Sunflower Sidekick Crossbody Bag // It's no secret I'm all for a happy bag. This one is over-the-top CHIPPER!!
  • Flo Grosgrain Bow Slide // That Kate Spade green is screaming my name. Have you seen a sweeter set of shoes??
  • A Real Flare For Fashion // The wit and whimsy you'll find in Krysa's work is unmatchable. Take a gander, won't you?!
  • Jane Reiseger Illustrations // A new-to-me Aussie based artist that has me grinning like a fool. It's childlike and fun.
  • 2D Cardboard Vase // I talk a lot about all the things I'd like to make, but this one is at the top of my list. Adorbs!!
  • Cobalt Earrings // Give me a bumper sticker that reads: "I BRAKE FOR ARTISTIC ACCESSORIES!!" Matisse, anyone??
  • Lucite Clipboard // NEWS FLASH!! I need to up my lucite game. Me thinks I should start with something desk related.
  • Motel Keyring // Blair knocked it out of the park with her latest fabulous accessory. The brass detail is EVERYTHING.
  • Venice Flat-Frame Sunglasses // These shades in Sweet Pine are absolutely precious. Are you a fan of the flat frame??
  • SKARIG Wall Clock // After visiting IKEA with my mom a few weeks ago, I scored this steal and I'm pleased as punch.
  • Large Flower Earrings // Did somebody say EXTRA LARGE flower earrings? Holy wow these are sassy stunners!!

    Happy Friday, m' dears! Make this weekend count.
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    Thursday, August 9, 2018

    THURSDAY'S THOUGHTS


    VIA MORGAN HARPER NICHOLS

    FEELING: It's no secret that Max loves cheese. Unfortunately, Max's body doesn't always love cheese as much as he'd like and getting him to pace himself is difficult. I've tried to explain to him countless times why eating it so frequently is a problem, but because he rarely listens to me, I had no choice but turn to YouTube again to educate the kid on the digestive system. Now he's OBSESSED with watching videos about digestion and he references his esophagus, intestines, and rectum on the regular. Mission accomplished.

    THANKFUL FOR: Monday was a doozy. We learned that our garage door needed to be fully replaced (for a cool $1800) after we heard the cable and spring snap on Sunday night. Woof! We had no way of getting either car out of the garage and the other places we called in the area were booked through Friday with other repair jobs. After talking to some family, we felt better about our decision to get it fixed, but paired with the falling trees and broken oven, being a homeowner has felt like a bit much lately. Argh! In an effort to shake off the sticker shock, Max and I went into town later that morning to get groceries at Safeway. We parked the car at our usual spot. We've parked in the same area for the past five months. It's at the halfway point between Target and Safeway—away from rolling stray carts and door bangers—and it allows us to hit up both stores if needed. But unbeknownst to me, sometime over the past week, Safeway got a locking system for their shopping carts and I had to learn this lesson the hard way. Yes, imagine yours truly, stuck in the middle of the street with a cart full of groceries in 90-degree weather, with a shopping cart that won't budge at all. It was so embarrassing! One of the employees finally saw us struggling, as cars drove around us, and explained that this cart change was fairly new. It took the the muscles of two grown men and me to lift the locked cart to a nearby sidewalk. With the assistance of a Safeway employee on her smoke break who agreed to watch our groceries, I grabbed Max and we retrieved the wagon. I threw on my hazard lights and shoved our groceries in the back of the car as fast as I could. I couldn't wait to hit the gas and get away from it all. Here's hoping no one remembers us, but Max will likely remind me of our Monday mishap for years to come.

    THINKING ABOUT: Erin, a fabulously fun rep at Beautycounter, let me try the Satin Powder Blush in Raspberry. I've been using it for about a month now and it didn't take long for me to realize there wasn't a need for my go-to NARS shade anymore. This option is safer AND long wearing, which helps me feel a bit more awake as I attempt to survive the day with Max. The shade I chose is highly-pigmented, so you don't have to apply a lot, but looks very natural at the same time.

    READING: I was under the impression I've read every book BrenĂ© Brown has to offer, but then Laura Tremaine mentioned I Thought It Was Just Me on her Instagram, and I hopped on Amazon immediately to hit purchase. After reading this brief summary, I'm already sold and excited to begin reading it this weekend: "
    We spend too much precious time and energy managing perception and creating carefully edited versions of ourselves to show to the world. As hard as we try, we can’t seem to turn off the tapes that fill our heads with messages like “Never good enough!” and “What will people think?”" Gulp! I may not need a therapist after I read this one. ;)

    LISTENING TO: Last Friday, Max and I stopped by Produce Junction to pick out some fresh flowers when a mom pointed at my kid and asked her sons why they couldn't act more well-behaved like him. Internet, I had to look around to make sure she was really referencing my threenager. I didn't have the heart to tell her that Max was just really constipated from all that cheese and this is SO not the norm for us. Hehe! When we got back to the car after running our errand, I praised the hell outta my kid because this may be the FIRST and LAST time we ever get a compliment like this. Go us!! 
     
    WATCHING: With the RHONY reunion approaching, I'm interested in your thoughts regarding Bethenny and Carole. Watching their friendship dissolve this season has been rough (they were one of my favorite Bravo duos), but I remain on Team B. Don't get me wrong, I definitely think there were ways in which Frankel could have taken the high road or times she should have shut her mouth, but Carole has changed. A lot. I don't think it's easy for Bethenny to let her guard down with someone and and I think she really trusted Carole, so she's genuinely sad that she's lost a once loyal companion. I'm honestly glad that this will be Radzi's last season. We don't have to talk about the marathon ANYMORE or pretend that she's wearing Beyonce's dress (yeah, NO!). Perhaps I'm being a little hard on her, but she seemed to be having an identity crisis after her breakup with Adam. Also, I don't see how someone who takes civic duties so seriously and was truly depressed about this past election can just up and forget about it all to become besties with the dingbat who forgets to vote but can get Carole exposure on a Coupin Cabin commercial????

    EATING: Bring on your best peach recipes! The local orchard we frequent is having a Peach Festival on Saturday and we intend on bringing home a boat load. Aside from scarfing them down in their most natural state, I thought I'd ask and see if you know of any recipes we should try. I can't say I've tried making anything other than a peach cobbler and peach salsa.

    LOVING: You guys! RUN! Don't walk. Snag Madewell's newest t-shirt for under $15. The Northisde Vintage Tee is perfection and doesn't cost an arm and a leg like its Rivet & Thread counterpart, which I own and adore. With a selection of snazzy colors (Hello, Light Petunia!), it comes as no surprise that the vintage crewneck top gets FIVE stars from reviewers.


    Enough about me. How are you feeling today? What are you up to? Thanks for stopping by!! 


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    Wednesday, August 8, 2018

    MY FAVORITE COFFEE TABLE BOOKS



    Awhile back someone asked if I would create a blog post with a round-up of my favorite coffee-table books. I was initially jazzed because collecting beautiful books is my weakness, but then I immediately felt overwhelmed by the task. HOW could I include ALLLLLL my favorite books in one post? Is that even possible? There are just SO many and I would hate to leave something out. After all, it's my collection of beloved hardcover books that typically become a priority whenever we move. They're one of the first things I have to unpack in an effort to feel settled. I love to be surrounded by them; they serve as a perfect source of color, inspo, and decor. Simply put, they make wherever we live feel like home. Sigh. So, in an effort to fulfill this reader's request, here's a list of books I adore (with a handful I had to leave out for now) and have a feeling you might love as well. Enjoy!


    Note: I get asked HOW I find the books in my collection frequently and here's the deal... Whenever I visit my favorite boutiques, museum bookshops, brick-and-mortar stores, browse online (looking at you Anthropologie), etc., I will often add the books to my Amazon Wish List for purchase at a later time or I take photos of the book covers with my phone and I keep them organized in a folder for future reference. I realize this trick isn't groundbreaking, but it helps me remember books I'm interested in owning and saves money as well. More often than not, Amazon is ALWAYS the cheapest option. Throw Prime on top of it and the sky's the limit.

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    Friday, August 3, 2018

    LURVE LOAVE LUFF



    Let's get right to it, shall we?

    Here's what made me feel all twitterpated, smile contagiously, giggle uncontrollably, etc.

    • Taygete Bow Slides // How is it possible that these adorable sandals have a $250 price tag?? They're too cute for words.
    • Jorey Hurley Art Prints // I'm a longtime fan of Jorey's prints and patterns. I love that you can buy her prints on Etsy.
    • Toppu Pot //Those stripes are an absolute dream. I have no clue where I'd put it, but I know I could find a home for it.
    • POC Lip Crayon // When your lip color is named POC (Eeeek!), you know it was made with color lovers in mind.
    • Trapeze Notecard Set // I want to frame these note cards and place them throughout the house. They're the prettiest!!
    • Lamp Print // Speaking of gallery walls, this simple gem would be a perfect addition to any curated collection.
    • SNOFSA Table Clock // I bought something similar from CB2 last year that was three times the price. Bravo, IKEA!
    • Iris & Ink Dress // While power washing the exterior of the house this weekend, I will dream of wearing this instead.
    • Dana Frankfort // How much are we loving Dana's work? Did you flip for it as much as I did in yesterday's post??
    • Blue Velvet Tufted Sofa // We have a spare bedroom that I have no clue what we'll use it for. Maybe it needs this??
    • Poste Card // Mr. Boddington is killing it with their latest pen-pal related products? The enamel pins are perfection.
    • Edit Your Life // This serves as a wonderful reminder to prioritize what matters most and discard the rest.
    • Large Kiondo Basket with Straps // You can justify something like this because it's storage AND a purse. Ha!


      Happy Friday, m' dears! Make this weekend count.


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      Thursday, August 2, 2018

      THURSDAY'S THOUGHTS

      AIR SUPPLY BY DANA FRANKFORT 

      FEELINGI got authorization from our insurance company to get Botox next Wednesday. When I visited the neurologist on July 23, he suggested we go this route to treat my migraines. Based on the success he's seen with patients over the years along with the laundry list of medications I've tried, I'm very hopeful. Do any of you have experience with this? Is there anything I should know?

      THANKFUL FOR: The local Habitat for Humanity ReStore came to our house yesterday and picked up a bunch of lights, ceiling fans, and kitchen cabinets we took down and replaced when we moved into the house. For the first time in five months, it feels like the spare garage is actually organized and I'm tickled to death to cross this looming to-do off our list.

      THINKING ABOUT: There's a lot to love about home ownership; however, paying to trim and cut down trees is not one of them. Woof! We learned this lesson the hard way a few weeks ago when big limbs from one of the Pear Trees that borders the property came down and blocked the driveway. A  local tree service came by to take a look at the work we'd need done to maintain and improve the mature trees on our acre lot and we were quoted $3,400. Gulp! Needless to say, we're going with the bare minimum option for now and only getting rid of the ones that need to go ASAP. I totally understand why it's best to let professionals do their thing, but HOLY BUCKETS that's a lot of money I would prefer to spend a gazillion other ways.

      READING: After a particularly rough few days with Max, I can't tell you how much comfort I found in these words from Erin Loechner
      "One of my mentors is the mother of a grown-up rock star (the literal, black leather jacket wearing kind) - and she sits with me over beet salads and chardonnay while her daughter travels internationally to play bass in front of a smoke machine and thousands. 
      I sometimes talk with her about homeschooling, about how to keep from feeling overwhelmed by the weighty responsibility of teaching your own. There’s so much to learn, so much to teach, so much you want to pass along. What if I leave out the important stuff? is what I ask her. 
      My mentor smiles and says this: They’ll find their important stuff. They’ll find their thing. They’ll find a bass guitar and a leather jacket and a place in the sun. You’ll water and wait. One morning, you’ll notice they’re standing ten feet taller, and that’s how you’ll know this thing is the thing. It was there all along; they just needed to grow into it.⠀ 
      Mothers: our job is sometimes less about growing groundbreaking kids and more about breaking ground for kids to grow themselves. Show them lovely things. Tell them daring stories. Till the soil, scatter the seeds. Let them pick up a bass guitar, a microphone, a pen. Pray for sun. 
      Water and wait, water and wait, water and wait."
      LISTENING TO: Did you know that Johnny Cash has a children's album? I stumbled upon it on a whim a few months ago (so glad I did) and found Dinosaur Song, which has quickly become Max's anthem. We listen to it nonstop (the current record is 7 times in a row) and I can't say I mind because the way this child lovingly belts the lyrics is absolutely precious. 
       
      WATCHING: You guys!! Shannon and Tamra in the hot tub this week. Hahahahahahaha! I could hardly breathe I was laughing so hard. And how about that boat ride from hell on RHONY??? What the what?! Andy Cohen, you are certainly delivering BIG this Summer, but I could really do without the new chicks on RHOC. They're a bland addition. Anyone else agree??

      EATING: My mom prepared Trader Joe's Rosemary Balsamic Steak Tips over a bed of quinoa pasta while we were at her house and it was freaking incredible! If you have access to a store, you should give it a shot. How can something so simple taste so decadent??

      LOVING: Finding a side table to match the scale of a king-size bed in a large bedroom is tricky, but we found a winner in West Elm's Wren Bistro Table. Squee! Something tells me I'll be busy styling the space this weekend, stacking books, and dreaming of sconces.


      Enough about me. How are you feeling today? What are you up to? Thanks for stopping by!! 

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      Wednesday, August 1, 2018

      LIFE'S LITTLE DETAILS


      "THE DETAILS ARE NOT THE DETAILS. THEY MAKE THE DESIGN." — CHARLES EAMES

      Max and I got back yesterday after spending this past week with my parents. Flyboy's work schedule has been slightly irregular and since my mom's Summer break is quickly coming to a close, we figured it would be the perfect opportunity to visit DC. While the photos in today's post are brimming with puppy snuggles and Snarkitecture ball pits at the National Building Museum (How fabulous is my mom sporting those heels?), I would also like to note that the past few days have been filled with a lot of tough stuff as well. I'll spare you the details for now, but the lows definitely make me grateful for marble runs with MiMi, a much-needed day date with FB at Le Diplomate, and muffin baking with my favorite menace. I keep thinking about those Leonard Cohen lyrics, the ones in which he reminds us, "There is a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in." This will all make perfect sense someday. It always does.

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