Friday Favorites

Oh my, how is it the Fourth of July?! This past week I got my hair (and eyebrows, thank you very much) done after an almost four month hiatus. I wore a mask for over two hours straight and it was worth every minute! So glad to have fresh highlights and layers courtesy of my favorite hair stylist. This weekend we will be doing our norm (hanging out at my parents waiting for our house to get finished), but B is cooking a giant brisket on his Traeger. I’m definitely looking forward to that! Here are some of our favorites of the week!

The most amazing water lily designs.

Quick and easy dinners with rotisserie chicken.

Bringing back the nineties with a scrunchie.

New world sourdough techniques.

How to find the best coffee on Amazon.

Great hiking pants I just bought.

Love this office set-up.

Finally, a bit of ruffle and neon.

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Fresh and fluffy plants

In the midst of moving out of our house, one of the things I drove over individually to my parents were my indoor plants. I’m not the best plant lady, but I’ve come to value having air purifying plants in our home. I’ve really needed to repot several of our plants, but I haven’t had a chance to yet this year. I found two larger pots at Target and one at Lowe’s and repotted the four plants that had out grown their homes.

I would’ve had a before picture, but I totally forgot, here are the pots:

And now here they are in their new pots:

They look so much happier! The biggest plant (on the far left) was in the second to left pot, so obviously they all needed bigger spaces. Now I’m just working on them having enough light and proper water amounts until I move them into their new spots. I managed to find pots from Lowe’s (far left), and Target (the other three), but it was not easy! There are weird things in limited supply these days and apparently plant pots are one of them.

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New house updates

Our cabinets are in! As you can tell, I am a little excited. After all the craziness of building during a pandemic, we are still making progress. We have hit a bit of a delay in the countertops and floors, so we are really hoping they get those in soon. Now that we can officially envision things better, I finally settled on counter height chairs, counter stools, and a breakfast table and chairs. I went round and round because we haven’t picked new furniture in quite awhile and we can’t really go see anything in the stores right now (obviously). After measuring heights, depths, and laying a lot of tape measures across the floor:

I came up with this set:

I didn’t want everything to match exactly. I don’t usually hold to one particular style, I go with what I like, and look for colors and tones to coordinate. The cornerstone for all of it was the Serena and Lily counter stools that I have been looking at for months. They were all on sale this week, so I made the giant leap (and measured the kitchen counter one more time), and ordered all four counter stools and the two end chairs for the table. I splurged on those because the table and side chairs are a steal. I’m still waiting on the two backless counter stools (to go under the island in the picture above) to come back into stock. I’m so excited to see it all together!

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June Make-Up Buys

Some refills and some new items to test out this month! First up, a few of my usual rotations:

Essie no chips ahead topcoat. You will never convince me another topcoat lasts longer than this one. I’ve tried many, and it’s the best.

Supergoop Unseen Sunscreen. This is my current favorite primer for my IT CC cream. If I’m wearing the CC cream, I’m wearing this and I have yet to get burned this summer on my face.

Tarte lip balm in Nude. Love it, wear it almost everyday!.

I switch between Neutrogena and Clinique make up remover. They are pretty similar and I typically only use them for cleaning brushes, so I would go for the steal instead of the splurge.

My boys hate sunblock that smells (is their a kid out there that relishes the smell of sunblock?), so I’m always on the hunt for ones that don’t. Their favorite is the Neutrogena Clear Face, but the SPF on that one is kind of low, especially for being in the pool. I tested out the Sport Face one this month and I feel like it stays better, and no smell.

Ouai air dry foam. Wow does this smell amazing! It makes your hair super soft, and I think if I did double buns it would have had even more of a wave the next day.

Pixie eye patches. Tricky to put on, but they are very cooling, and make a big difference in puffiness under my eyes.

Morphe M105. A narrower countering brush, good for bronzer placement. First saw it on a Lindsey Regan Thorne make-up tutorial and I really like it!

I also picked up a few items for A this month:

Dove deodorant. Good smelling, not super strong.

With the amount of pool time the boys have had this summer, I needed to up their hair care routine. The boys have totally different hair types, so I tested out this shampoo and conditioner with A. It doesn’t have a strong scent and his hair has been super soft and healthy looking!

One of my goals with the boys is that they learn and understand the importance of good skin care and hygiene. This Supergoop moisturizer is for A to put on every morning. He really needs to wear sunscreen everyday, and this one has no scent and NO sticky feeling like most sunblocks. I tested it out and I love it for days when I wear no other makeup. So much so, that I may buy another container for myself.

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Friday Favorites

Handstand for Friday! This weekend we’re….hanging out? Cooking some barbecue? Waiting to hear what’s the plan for schools this fall? Anyway. Here are some of our favorites of the week!

The desk I have my eye on for our office.

Incorporating family photos throughout the house.

Making a popsicle house like the house in Up.

Can’t decide if I should watch this and be terrified like it’s 1992 again.

Buffalo chicken chili. It’s like a combination of summer and fall!

Wardrobe capsule for ZOOM meetings and staying at home.

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One pan roasted salmon

The most simple of summer dinners, four 7 oz salmon filets, a bunch of asparagus, lemon, salt and pepper. Preheat the oven to 425, and line a large foil pan with heavy duty foil. Place all your items on the pan like above and sprinkle everything with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toss the asparagus a bit so it’s coated, and place a slice of lemon on each filet. Roast for about 12-14 minutes until the salmon is cooked through. While that’s cooking we make jasmine rice to go on the side. This is one of our favorites!

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Late Spring Reads

I’ve read my fair share of books these past two months! Determined to put down my iPad, especially on the weekends, I’ve been completing about a book a week, which is a record for me. Here is a quick review of what I’ve read lately.

The Silent Patient. I read this in two days. It’s an intriguing read, but also very fast moving. Prepare a good block of time to read it, because once you start it, you want to find it how it ends. It is unsettling, but one of the most unique books I’ve read so far this year.

Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe. Driven by a family loss, a young girl at the crossroads of her career returns to the town of her parents. It’s about self-discovery, family ties, and the power of food. A fun read, and I really enjoyed it from beginning to end.

The Bookshop of Yesterdays. This was fine, it was a bit of the same theme as Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe, but more somber in tone. My favorite part of the book was all the classical literature ties the author brought in throughout the story.

Living Forever Chic. A fun read about French culture and their celebration of food and home. These books are some of my favorite before bed reads. Very calming and inspiring for home ideas!

Ramen and Gyoza. The next book (for me) in the Oishinbo series, it’s a celebration of two of our favorite foods. I love how these books provide the history of the food and the cultural perception and etiquette surrounding them.

And lastly, two more Maisie Dobbs books. If you start this series, you really do want to read it in order. The author has done a wonderful job leading the reader through the historical context that is moving from the ending of World War I towards the start of World War II. Each book has a mystery central to the story, but I really find the discussion of the era intriguing.

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Friday Favorites

Constructed a complete Lincoln Log Village. Lately, J has been all about the house he’s going to build when he grows up. He has big plans, although he’s unsure of how he will find all the materials in the real world. I feel like that’s an honest concern considering materials are very easy to find on Minecraft in creative mode. Happy weekend! And happy building planning!

Caramel pecan sticky buns will be the first breakfast I’m making in our new house!

Mysteries of Jackson Pollock’s largest painting.

Perfect places to purchase prints.

Adding the classic Gastronomical Me to my reading list.

Raised garden bed.

Apple butter brie appetizer.

Colorful stack of bracelets.

Listened to three How I Built This Podcasts this week on SuperGoop, Shake Shack, and Jo Malone.  All very interesting, and I got several ideas and quotes for class material.

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Sport practice

In March, A was meeting weekly for his Operation 36 golf practices, and J had just received the roster for his Spring baseball team. In a matter of days all of that had been put on hold, then rescheduled, then canceled. J’s baseball season was completely canceled and he will be playing fall baseball instead. A’s just about to restart practices for the junior PGA league. In this waiting period, we have been working around the heat and humidity to get in practice times for the boys. J is mainly working with B because I’m terrified of getting hit by a baseball:

However, A’s practice is right up my ally. I hold his clubs, time his practice on different skills, and load up various videos when he needs to check his form with what his coach has taught him. A has been practicing chipping in my parents’ backyard:

And putting at the green at the local golf course.

Despite it being summer now, the boys have both asked about practicing, and we are working to foster that commitment. It’s not always easy because it’s hard to see the end goal of their practice right now, but we are proud of them for sticking with it.

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Favorite lip balms, sticks, and glosses

I’m a really inconsistent lip product wearer by nature, but over the last few years I’ve realized the importance of wearing at least a balm to keep my lips from getting super chapped. As you can see I definitely have a color preference, and it’s a pinky-nude hue. I don’t like bright colors or reds, because I hate it when they wear off and you get a weird lip line. The ones above are what I wear, from have it on everyday, to special occasion.

First, have it on everyday is Tarte SEA Quench Lip Balm in Nude. It adds just a touch of color, is not tacky, and keeps my lips well moisturized.

My recording lecture videos color is either Charlotte Tilbury in Pillow Talk or YSL in Beige Tribute. These are really similar, the CT runs a bit more on the pink side, and the Beige Tribute has a bit of a darker undertone. Both are matte, so I usually pick one or the other and follow it with…

NYX lip gloss in Creme Brûlée. By far my favorite lip gloss, this is not sticky, wears well, and it’s all I use for touch-ups once I get to work (when I’m actually going, which right now feels like ages ago).

If I want a bit more of a pink pop, but still in a Nude hue, I’ll use NARS Chihuahua lip gloss. This is sticky, but has great impact and shine. I’ll usually wear it if I’m going out, but not if I’m teaching in class. If I’m in class teaching I’m talking a lot and this doesn’t wear great for that.

If we are at the pool, or going hiking I wear Fresh Sugar lip balm in Honey. It is a little thicker than the Tarte Lip Balm, and it has SPF in it. It definitely transfers color though, so be prepared for that.

And my lips would be a huge mess if it were not for my nightly routine:

I put on Fresh caramel balm as soon as I wash my face or get out of the shower at night, then I put on Kiehls lip balm right before I go to bed. I also have realized the importance of drinking a ton of water which helps as well. I usually drink one Smart Water a day, and then refill either my Swell bottle or Yeti thermos multiple times, and aim for around 60 ounces or more.

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