The Internet is My Favorite

Anyone need an escape at some point this week, perhaps in the form of some links that will inspire? Here’s the best of what I’ve found.

BAGGU Standard Triple Set

Is it too  late to add these to my Christmas list? I need them.

Have you baked enough cookies this month? Here are some white chocolate peppermint cookies because that’s what December is all about. These soft lemon chocolate chip cookies are weirdly appealing to me. I say weirdly because a) I find lemon and chocolate a wonky combination (I have never understood the cover of this book), and b) these call for margarine….wait, what? In 2017? Also, I don’t usually like biscotti, but could maybe get into a soft version. I’m basically so intrigued I feel compelled to make them.

I loved this article Tracy shared, which is also weird because Gooplet is far from sleepover age. But mostly, it parallels every single piece of parenting advice I’ve ever found to be true, which is basically, cut your expectations in half, and then half again. And then you really will have a joyful time.

Dear readers, IOU a reading post, but for now, please note that although National Book Award winners usually aren’t my cup of tea (which always leaves me feeling like the least intellectual human being), I am devouring this book, and though it’s crushing my very soul, I don’t find it too much to read right before bed.

Ahhhhh, the don’t do list. I’ve posted a couple before, and I think it’s time for a refresh. Because writing one is seriously refreshing. I’m mulling over all the goals for 2018 and this is truly standing out to me.

Speaking of lists, dear readers, way back at the beginning of the month, I met with a professional organizer. I want so badly to share all about it with you, but I’m kind of still working through everything I got out of my whirlwind couple of hours with her. This video is not glamorous in the slightest, but I’ve been looking into a lot related to it, and the idea of being an executive for yourself. The idea of not declaring yourself too busy is along the same lines as well.

And speaking of being organized, if you want to impress any guests coming to stay with you soon, you could totally get a cute little basket together for them, a la Emily Henderson. And the wifi password. Always leave people your wifi password! I also love Becky Higgins’ post about hosting people. (SCL and QC, we are going to try our best to roll out this elaborate of a red carpet for you soon!)


The Internet is a Crazy Place

Dear readers, I have some great links to point you towards today, but I have to share a little story with you first.

There are so many people on the Internet whom I’ve followed for years. My first foray into blogs was via some of the OG scrapbookers, Ali, Elsie, Tara, and Elise. I’ve been “with” them for almost a decade at this point. And then Deb, Joy, and Tracy led me into the world of food blogs, and, well, you’re reading the result of that.

hashtag oprah.

(one of Oprah’s and my favorite sayings)

In the time since I’ve followed these people, they’ve had eight-thousand ups and downs, some of which they’ve shared, and I’m sure, many they haven’t. But this year has been a big one. Ali got married. Tara took the pictures. Elsie is headed to China right now to adopt a little girl. And right after Thanksgiving, Tracy posted that her mom died.

I’ve never met Tracy, but she’s given me my favorite wings recipe, stuffed shells that I love to make for others, hours of podcast fun, and so much more. I’m simply heartbroken for her. It’s strange to think about how to me, she is someone who both is and isn’t a stranger.

The internet is a funny little place, isn’t it?

Here’s what I’m into lately:

If you’re tired of bloggers throwing Christmas in your face, may I point you towards New Years? Because I love me some goal-setting, and this don’t do list idea is my jam.

I think I have a jolly good British accent already, and this is fascinating. Chock full of tips to boost my already amazing Harry Potter read aloud skills.

Speaking of internet “friends” from the good old days, Emily posted a holiday snack board, and as I’m on post-church punch and cookies duty soon, this is looking perfect.

Also, we’ve got a new royal wedding to look forward to. Here’s a reminder that this book (on super sale for Kindle today) is a great one, and worth your time while you wait for spring, 2018.



Random Updates Right Before Thanksgiving

Dear readers, I hope you have the most wonderful Thanksgivings ever! I am so thankful for those of you who come visit and spend time with me online. Some of you have been here since the very beginning, over 8 years ago. Wow.

pumpkin skillet cobbler I

(Did I tell you all I made this pumpkin skillet cobbler for a recent Sunday dinner? Mine didn’t look nearly as beautiful, and I’d cut the flour topping by half, but I loved this, and will happily make it again around Christmas time.)

Let’s share some random stuff in hopes that spilling it here helps us move on and focus on the most important things this week – THANKSGIVING. Dear readers, tell me what’s in your heads right now in the comments.

  • Oh man, the holidays are here. Despite the internet announcing their presence for the past month, they’ve still sort of surprised me by being here already. And I am clinging to what little sanity I have, but dear readers, I have to tell you. The one thing I miss most about being childless is the ability to drop everything and do nothing for hours on end. Oh, sure, there was a full time job, and volunteer commitments, and cleaning the house, and whatever. But here and there, you’d better believe there were little spots on the calendar with nothing going on. I miss that life, and the endless YouTube binges it brought with it.
  • I’ve started 4 books recently and put them all down before finishing. It’s not because I don’t like them – they’ve been great. (Though one has been incredibly emotionally intense, and I needed a break.) I always do this – it’s the weirdest. I found two books I had started but not finished the other day on my library’s used book shelf, and I brought them both home with me.
  • Speaking of books, Anne and Leigh have been doing some super fun bookstagram things with Little Free Libraries, and I’m loving it. We have a couple in the next neighborhood over, and it’s making me want to take a big walk in the stroller to see what they’ve got, and maybe leave a book or two as well.
  • We got this Bose speaker for our main level of the house recently. (After we renovated our basement, the soundbar that went with the TV got booted downstairs, and with it went my ability to play music or listen to podcasts on anything other than my phone.) I love it.
  • Our house is in a state of re-shuffling and that’s left the room we used as an office (except really, we rarely event set foot in that room) almost empty. So. Part of me sees that and thinks, we need to put things in that room because usually rooms have things in them, and the other part thinks we should wait and finish a couple spaces we use more frequently before we fill it. I don’t want to fill it just to fill it, you know?
  • I need to go to Costco. There is never a good time to go to Costco.
  • Trying super hard to make healthy choices right now. Holy moly is my life different now than it was before Gooplet came on the scene. Since going to barre 4 times a week isn’t feasible right now, I decided I cannot beat myself up about that. It simply is what it is right now. Instead, I’ve got to focus on what I can do, which for today, is drinking tons of water, and eating fewer snacks between meals. Let’s hope I can stay strong on that aforementioned Costco trip.

Links for your Weekend

plaid headboards.

(These plaid headboards are striking.)

Dear readers, have we ever talked about my fascination with the Mormon church? It’s

been an on-going part of my life for some time now. Design Mom just posted about church vs. religion, and I found this post about Mormon bloggers via Julia.

We are on a serious oatmeal bender in our house, and Jessica’s baked oatmeal with bourbon and bananas looks like the best possible way to spice up breakfast tomorrow morning.

When you’re a minimalist living with someone who isn’t. (Or, when you want something one way, and your husband wants it the other). Always love Erin’s peaceful takes on life.

There is not a single thing I need to add to my kitchen collection (see above, and file under: Minimalist, I am not), but this marble cake stand caught my eye at Target this morning, and I can’t get it out of my head.

Always love hearing from Janssen, who is a couple steps ahead of me in the parenting game (she has four little girls under her roof). Her post on chores that toddlers can help with gave me a couple of new ideas.

We are so, so ,so close to Thanksgiving. That means we can definitely be thinking about what’s on the table this year. I bookmarked Simply Recipes’ list of the best store-bought pie crusts just in case it doesn’t all happen from scratch this year. Don’t tell CV(D)’s mom! And one more Thanksgiving-related note. This book is the all time best, and worth a quick reread every year.

The Best Stuff on the Internet

Sharing some of my favorite recent links today, dear readers. Enjoy!

triple layer chocolate chip cookie cake.

(This is the most beautiful chocolate chip cakechocolate chip cake.)

As we make more and more friends with young kids, I’m learning that it’s almost innate for some parents to compare what their kids are doing and what yours are. When I saw this post via Brown Eyed Baker, I teared up. This is what all kids and parents should know. Let’s work on these. We’ve got a long way to go.

I’m not crying, you’re crying. If you need a laugh, try this. I’ve watched it about 8000 times. (Also, it kind of reminded me of this, which is not humorous, nor incredibly appealing to many of you, but was interesting to me.)

Whenever Janssen rounds up kids’ books, I’m listening. I can’t wait to pore over her list of I-Spy books. I put The Odd One Out on my Christmas list, and yes, it’s early October, and I said Christmas. Not sorry.

Joy the Baker shared a recipe for Detroit Style Pizza. I didn’t know that was a thing, but I do know pizza and salad is one of my favorite combinations, and this looks like a great, easy weeknight dinner if you make it on French Bread instead of making your own dough. Sign me up.

Backing up my iPhone. Ugh! I haven’t done it since I got a replacement phone a while back. It’s on that list of to-do’s that are necessary, but not urgent, so it doesn’t get done, and it doesn’t get done, and if I lose all my photos of Goop I’m going to cry. I need to get on it!

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.

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?


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.




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.


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.


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.

Eleven Things


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!

Food Blogs are my Favorite

This is getting ridiculous. Every other day, I’ve got a new list here.

But I love lists, and there’s just so much to tell you all. Lists are efficient.

The food blogs I read are on fire right now. Here’s what I want to make:

First of all, adding NYT Cooking to my Facebook feed was one of the better decisions I’ve made recently. This is butter steamed broccoli with peppery bread crumbs.

Does anyone else remember when Tracy posted about making your own almond milk? I read the post, and was like, ummm, that sounds good, but complicated. I don’t know if it’s the passing of time, my current Whole 30 endeavor, or the promise of Nutella milk, but Lindsay’s nut milks sound amazing, and doable. Nut milk is a funny term.

I feel similarly about Brown Eyed Baker’s Momofuku Birthday Cake. Always wanted to make it. Her post makes me think I could. It’s also super-helpful to hear from a fellow frosting-lover that she wasn’t bummed about the lost frosting from the naked circumference of the cake.

Food can be powerful. Food can heal.

For my fellow mayo-based-salad-haters, here is asparagus potato salad with hot bacon dressing.

Jessica calls this a pineapple ginger smoothie, but if you play up the coconut in the recipe, it’s definitely a pina colada smoothie, and where do I sign up?

Summer dessert alert!

Anytime dessert alert!

Banana cake is my favorite. Because it’s cake, so that’s awesome, but it doesn’t feel quite so decadent. Like you got away with eating a piece of cake sans some of the guilt? Of course, the only thing better than banana cake is chocolate banana cake.

Remember Everyday Food? Sigh. Me too. Let’s reminisce together over some banana blueberry muffins.

You had me at Rich Man’s Hot Pockets.

The following two uses for breakfast cereal are blowing my mind: cereal parfaits (duh, why didn’t I think of this?), and milk and cereal breakfast popsicles (I’m envisioning something with chocolate milk and Cinnamon Toast Crunch).