What’s New

It has been forever since I added another list to the internet, dear readers, so after way too long, today is the day. Here’s what’s new with me. Tell me what’s new with you in the comments.

  1. Are you even kidding me with this glass of milk Land of Nod bedding? I need it, and plan on purchasing as soon as we figure out which furniture goes where, post-basement renovation.
  2. I watched the Emmys last weekend. I wasn’t going to because I typically love the Golden Globes and the Oscars so much more, and I was tired, but dear readers, the show was awesome. Great outfits, speeches, winners, and the cherry on top was that it opened in song (as obviously all awards shows should).
  3. I spent the night away from Gooplet for the first time last weekend too, and I’ve got two more nights away in the near future. It should have felt amazing, and in many ways it was, but mostly, I just like when our little family of three is under the same roof. I am so out of sorts when we’re not. So curious to see if this feeling changes the more I up and leave.
  4. Speaking of Gooplet, when we collect him from his crib in the morning, he asks where people are. “Daddy? Moo? Coco?” and then he makes his next request, “Mo-ah?” And we proceed to listen to the Moana soundtrack on repeat for the rest of the day. Dear readers, I’m over it.
  5. Queen Cupcake is back on the East Coast, and before too much longer we will have seen each other three times in a month! That’s gotta be a record for us, at least post-2002. We’ve got plans for a November get together, and another a couple months after that. I can hardly contain my excitement.
  6. Will I send you into a pumpkin-spiced panic if I tell you how excited I am for Halloween and Thanksgiving this year? Dying to host the latter since we all know I was still a hot mess of a mom last year, and couldn’t cook my own turkey. I will? Okay, never mind, forget I brought it up.

When Something is Better Than Nothing

This concept has come up in my life a couple of times lately, and nothing makes for a better blog post than something that keeps popping up in front of me.

reminder.

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Something is better than nothing must be a cousin of done is better than perfect, as both are mantras I’m working on embracing in my on-going quest to do all the things.

A couple of real life examples from the last 5 minutes (give or take) of my life right now:

  • Even if I am still eating Goldfish by the (massive) handful, eating more fruits and vegetables during the day is better than massive amounts of Goldfish alone.*
  • Even if I am not back at the barre 4 times a week, going when I can make the time is better than sitting on the couch for another episode of Gilmore Girls.
  • Even if I my weekly meal plan has gone off the rails, getting creative with the remnants of the fridge is better than Annie’s mac and cheese for dinner again. Often way better.

*Flavor Blasted Goldfish forever, though.

In Which We Discuss Serving Vessels

While I was reading the best reader comments on Cup of Jo the other day, I loved the one about not putting out enough chairs for your guests when they come over. It makes everyone cozy up and make friends, even if they’re initially feeling a little awkward.

whaaaaaaaaat.

(I can’t even with these pizza fries.)

Which reminded me I read a somewhat similar tip about serving food when you’re entertaining. I’ve completely forgotten the source, but they said to choose containers a bit too small, so that it looks like you have a surplus of whatever you made, as opposed to leaving something in a container with room at the top.

Peach and Prosciutto Salad with Honey Mustard Vinaigrette - Cookie Monster Cooking

(A late summer peach and prosciutto salad is sounding just right.)

Dear readers. This is hysterical because I am notoriously awful at judging how much space there is for something. Filling Tupperware and other such storing and serving vessels is always something I miss the mark on, but I’ve been keeping this tip in mind and trying to plan a little better for our next Sunday Dinner.

Bouquets of Newly Sharpened Pencils

Despite this being the second year I’m removed from the back to school process, I had my first back to school dream the other night. Ask any teacher, and she’ll tell you that August is when thoughts of the new year start creeping in, no matter how desperately you try to push them away. I’m not school supply shopping this year, but if I was, these three pencil sets* would be at the top of my list. Clicking on each will take you to the appropriate Etsy shop.

 

Is This the Weirdest Thing Ever?

I think it might be, but dear readers, have you heard of ASMR? The best way I can describe it is it’s this weird tingly feeling you get when you hear certain noises. Or maybe you don’t? I definitely do – always have, and I had no idea it was a thing until I heard about it on Sorta Awesome last summer. Since then, it’s popped up in a couple of places in my life, none more funny to me than this IKEA video. Leave it to the Swedes to be on top of the newest cultural trends.

Guess Who’s Back?

Dear readers, I didn’t intend to leave you for a month but that’s exactly what I did. I missed you tons and I didn’t miss you at all. But it’s good to be back. Let’s start slow, shall we?

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When I sat down to menu plan for the week I saw this and remembered that OMG I love arugula in the summer. It just tastes right. Planning to make that salad, plus put a bed of peppery greens under this.

Emily Henderson’s advice for students heading to college is spot. On.

Rachel’s guide to staying along 30A in Florida has me wishing for another vacation, and we only just got back. (Clea from The Home Edit just stayed here too, and shared about it in her Insta stories. Yes please!)

Oh, and Kelle and her family went off to Mackinac, which has long been atop my list of places to go. Basically what I’m saying is I want to chase resort life all year long.

Thick enough to go commando“? I thought I knew everything about how Lilly got her start, but I learned a couple of things from this article.

Love this list, pairing YA Fiction with Non-Fiction.

I always roll my eyes when bloggers post people’s house tours because they all look the same to me. But Joanna’s new apartment in Brooklyn seems like it breaks the cookie cutter mold, and like people actually live there. I love it.

Molly and Deb each dabbled in wedding baking this summer, and I loved the results.

 

Currently

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Enjoying a slower schedule – for about 6 months I kept thinking, things will slow down next month, and that kept not happening. Now it’s happening and I’m loving it.

Reading only the lightest and fluffiest material now that summer is here. The one upside to my husband bringing home buckets of work every night is that it leaves me plenty of time with my books.

Donating more clothes, books, and toys to unsuspecting thrift stores, libraries and consignment shops everywhere. I never got the nesting urge while I was pregnant, but man, has it hit me now.

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Inviting friends for dinner each Sunday evening. You’ll hear more about this fast-favorite tradition soon.

Transferring the stuff of life into my new planner. I splurged on The Simplified Planner this year, dear readers, and I can’t wait to dive into it on August 1.

Dreaming about some kind of fall getaway. We’ve got a wedding in New Jersey in October and I’m tempted to keep driving somewhere after we leave.

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Thinking about how much more I accomplish when I have a deadline. I have a couple of not-super-important things I want to do, but haven’t done yet, and they’re not getting done because a) I need to break them down into smaller chunks, and b) there’s no real rush to finish them.

Finishing Parks and Rec. I’ve tried watching it straight through a couple of times, but something about this go-round stuck, and my husband and I are almost done. We’ve got Master of None, season 2 on the list to go next, and by the time this post goes up, the new season of Orange is the New Black will be live! It takes place over 72 hours which is super-intriguing to me.

Planning a couple of adventures for the summer months that will make Gooplet’s and my days a little more exciting than usual. If you want it to be spring break, you have to make it spring break. The same is true for summer.

Wins of the Month – May, 2017

Oh man, does it ever feel like I’m coming off a month where the biggest win is that we survived. Looking forward to a laid-back summer.

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  • mailed birthday cards
  • ordered a ton of new art for the walls
  • moved some furniture to change the layout of our first floor
  • painted the screened porch ceiling blue
  • got an estimate for finishing the basement
  • cleared more clutter out of the house
  • spent tons of time outdoors
  • got a pedicure and my hair done
  • found a new brewery we love

The Internet is My Favorite

Dear readers, let’s come fresh off of a great run of posts on meal planning and soak up some of the best internet out there, shall we?

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This salad is a very loose interpretation of one from Love and Olive Oil. The mini tortellini is a favorite purchase from Trader Joes (in the pasta aisle, not refrigerated section).

You should probably drop whatever you’re doing right now and listen to Katie Couric interview Ina. (Spoiler alert: Ina says shit twice! It feels so saucy!)

Cup of Jo linked to this before the last long weekend, and it (got a little long, but) reminded me of one of my favorite parts of one of my most recent reads. I didn’t know there was a name for all those administrative tasks I was managing in our family. Related – I freaking love administrative tasks.

**Update** Design Mom posted about this yesterday too. When there’s so much energy behind a post right away, you know someone has struck a nerve.

This Frito pie chili biscuit skillet is not something I’d usually make, but ever since I saw it, I’ve kind of been dreaming about it.

I love what Tsh writes about a chill-but-orderly summer. That’s the exact kind of pacing I like. (A reminder that if you have tiny people in your home all the time, if you want it to be summer, you have to make it summer.)

I had no idea you could buy so many Kit Kat flavorsKit Kat flavors in Japan. I’m intrigued.

Do you have any Little Free Libraries in your neighborhood? I adore them, and have a couple I check frequently.

I love everything Inslee draws, but I also adore what she writes. Happy to see a new blog post from her. Always cheering for new moms.

And while we’re on the subject of moms, Design Mom linked to this, which led me to this Instagram account, which is a wonderful reminder that every single person on this planet is the most beautiful.

Never thought about it this way – interest vs. attention span.

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Eleven Things

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On the 11th.

  1. Is anyone you follow on Instagram doing the 100 Day Project? I love the idea, and I thought so hard about what I could do, but I came up short. I couldn’t think of something I was super excited about enough to spam my Instagram followers. My favorite projects this year are Elise’s (duh), and Four Dots’.
  2. Another reason I decided against the 100 Day Project this year is that it overlaps with Ali Edwards’ Week in the Life, which is my favorite thing ever. I’ll be going Insta-crazy in about two weeks, so that seems like enough. I love the way this project makes me take more pictures, and notice things I don’t always notice. I have never made an album of my pictures, ‘gramming them is plenty for me.
  3. I found the perfect pair of sunglasses! Bought them without a second thought and received two compliments on them as soon as they were on!
  4. Big Little Lies! I read it two summers ago, and haven’t watched the HBO series yet. I’ve heard mixed reviews – some friends loved it, others not so much. I loved the book and I love Reese, so I definitely want to watch.
  5. There are so many home improvements I want to make right now, and I’m trying to deal with the overwhelming feeling of wanting/needing to do a million things at once. I’ve been long putting off a trip to IKEA because who wants to go and haul heavy things alone with a baby, who himself is another heavy thing? Not I!
  6. It’s almost Easter! My family has absolutely zero Easter traditions. I have never successfully cooked a ham, and they’re supposed to be so easy. Once we outgrew egg hunts and Easter baskets, that was that. So will you share your traditions with me? What little surprises could I add to make the day (weekend?) special? This bread looks amazing, but it will be an Easter miracle if I can pull it off.
  7. Okay, time to talk about S Town. Have you listened yet? Coming straight off of Missing Richard Simmons and diving into S Town meant I was in the mindset to guess at a couple of the “twists,” but I was hooked nonetheless. But the same question I had about Richard Simmons remains – when is a story not yours to tell? I also loved listening to Megan and Laura’s special episode of Sorta Awesome, where they break it down episode by episode.
  8. I’m trying to spend at least a half hour outdoors each day. What’s the point of ditching my day job for this whole mom-gig if I’m still trapped inside?
  9. Don’t laugh, okay, dear readers? I’ve been spending so much time on social media feeds that have to do with cleaning, decluttering, simplifying, you name it. A couple of weekends ago I went spring cleaning crazy and I’m trying so hard to keep up with that momentum. I don’t have hours and hours at a time to clean the house from top to bottom, so it’s all happening in little chunks. One bag at a time heading out the door to go to ThredUp, Goodwill, or the thrift store.
  10. And while we’re on the subject of home stuff, let’s talk about art on the walls. I’m so drawn to art with words on it, but I want to hang art with just art on it. I have such a hard time finding pieces I love, though. Do you have anything hanging that you love?
  11. I joined Costco yesterday night. It was pretty momentous. The (Not So) New Girl has been egging me on for years!