What I Read: July ’18

Signs Proceeding the End of the World by Yuri Herrera: I was transported by the short novel that “explores the crossings and translations people make in their minds and language as they move from one country to another, especially when there’s no going back. Traversing this lonely territory is Makina, a young woman who knows only too well how to survive in a violent, macho world. Leaving behind her life in Mexico to search for her brother, she is smuggled into the USA,” (via). There is a magical realism quality to this story and it feels like a Greek epic. Please go read this book.

The Sioux Chef by Sean Sherman: This cookbook was a gift from my father in law – who knows how much I love cookbooks and love eating local foods! I really enjoyed the stories and notes surrounding the recipes. But with all cookbooks – it’s the food that counts. And this food is yummy while helping remind us to eat more local meats, vegetables and fruits. Hopefully, we can get our act together and I can photograph a few recipes (and maybe we’ll pop wild rice at Christmas!).

The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins: “(T)his 1868 mystery draws readers into a compelling tale with twists and turns ranging from sleepwalking to experimentation with opium. The suspense and drama is heightened as the narrative passes from one colorful character to the next.” (via) This was some how on my recommended list (I think because Sergeant Cuff is a precursor to Sherlock Holmes but I found this old style novel too long and quite the slog to finish.

What I Read: June ’18

The Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Desai: “Kiran Desai’s brilliant novel, published to huge acclaim, is a story of joy and despair. Her characters face numerous choices that majestically illuminate the consequences of colonialism as it collides with the modern world.” (via) I really struggled to fall into this story, told from split perspectives. I did find that mirrored the division between families in this tale but it isn’t one I’d run to recommend.

Falling Leaves by Adeline Yen Mah: “A compelling, painful, and ultimately triumphant story of a girl’s journey into adulthood, Adeline’s story is a testament to the most basic of human needs: acceptance, love, and understanding. With a powerful voice that speaks of the harsh realities of growing up female in a family and society that kept girls in emotional chains, Falling Leaves is a work of heartfelt intimacy and a rare authentic portrait of twentieth-century China.” (via) I read this memoir for book club and I really enjoyed the story of a woman coming into her own, although there some parts I struggled with (from the narrative rather than the storytelling).

18 Pans of ’18: July

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Items used in July: 10

Totals items used (thus far): 61

I’m really jazzed to have some make up items out – they take so long to use up. I’m learning that as much as I enjoy purchasing lip products, I cannot use them up as fast as I buy them. I have SO MANY lovely reds that need used and loved. Hopefully this can be the Fall of Reds so I can make some serious progress on those. Really happy to have cleaned out my hand creams to the point where I could buy a new one! Woohoo!

Everlane: Sustainable Fashion Review

I ordered a few t shirts and two pairs of jeans from Everlane and I thought I’d share my thoughts! I should note, I’m in the middle of trying to lose some weight and while I didn’t want to buy fast fashion, I need these jeans to work for my day job and on the weekends.

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I really enjoy these! They fit great until I continued to lose some weight and now they are a little loose and not quite as flattering. The shirts on the other hand, were a little harder. The ‘boxy’ fit ones are quite a bit boxy and the slouchy ones are great but too clingy to wear even under a blazer for work. Most importantly – they are 100% unshrunk cotton so they will shrink on you unless you hang them to dry and who (WHO?) has time to be that fussy with t shirts?

Choo Choo Someone’s Two! Toddler Boy Train Birthday Party

Our sweet Baby C turned two in June! My in laws came in from Minnesota and while a few friends didn’t show up, we had a full house and were able to really celebrate our little dude! I’m so grateful to everyone who did attend, it was so great to see you all!

Things have been very full-on in our house lately – lots of stuff going on for both M and me at work, endless sicknesses for all three of us, house renovations anticipating guests, garden drama, and, and, and. So I wasn’t able to do this up to the level I’d hoped because I was so inspired by this theme.

Our son was given his cousin’s old train table and all the tracks and trains and he is so so into his ‘choo choos’! I ordered some party favors (of hats, bandanas and wooden whistles) for the kiddos and we ordered a big ol’ Subway sandwich. The night before I baked up and decorated cupcakes with my niece and nephew, which is turning into a little tradition that I just love. I hope I continue to be cool enough to bake with!

18 Pans of ’18: June

Items used in June: 11 (1 decluttered)

Total this year (thus far): 51

I’m doing really well with using more than 18 items total! There’s also two things in my original goal post (the serum and the brush cleaner) that took a lot longer than I expected them to. I’m also thrilled to have two more perfume samples out too. Those eye shadows are going because they just don’t work well.

Weekend Recap: June 9&10, 2018

A weekend for the record books! Friday night, I joined a dozen other ladies from my local running club for yoga outside. It was a rainy night but we had a tent so we did a gentle routine under the sound of rain hitting the tent – it was pretty darn great. We then had a few drinks and a potluck dinner.

Saturday morning the three of us headed down to the Ohio History Connect for their Story Book Village event. We got to meet several PBS and fairy tale characters. We got lunch from the food trucks and then headed home for nap. We needed to plant a few planters in the back yard in anticipation of C’s birthday so spent a bunch of the afternoon hanging out in the sunshine doing that.

After bedtime, M and I filled a(nother) dumpster with demo’ed bits and bobs from the basement. We are removing a few shoddy built ins and about half of the added faux wood paneling. We still have a ways to go before it’s completely done but we’re making decent progress. M also made me spend our Sunday nap time decluttering the TV room half of the basement and it’s looking much better!

The rest of Sunday was spent doing the usual cleaning, grocery shopping and on our monthly Costco trip. We’re trying to 1 one shop a month…we shall see! After C woke up from his nap, we all met my sister at Mad Moon for a cider flight. During dinner, C made it clear he was coming down with another ear infection. This is his third in as many months – please send any spare healthy vibes our way!

Summer Wardrobe Wishlist

I haven’t really been shopping too much, I did need some new jeans and I got them from an ethical fashion brand (review coming soon!). A big part of the reason is that I’d like to be making more of my own clothes; however, right now, I’m really lacking the time. I also don’t want to invest hundreds of dollars in fabric and while I have some stuff that is appeal appropriate, they are not the most current patterns. So. Here’s a few things I’ve been eyeing while I’m window shopping and I’d love to make it into my summer wardrobe.

from left to right, top to bottom

Boden Phoebe Jersey Dress (honestly, any of their dresses! I’d love to try one and they look the right length for toddler mom life)

Boden Embroidered Linen Kaftan

LL Bean Signature Madras Shirt in Pink Pearl

Everlane Cotton Twill Short

What are you loving this summer? I’m really craving an easy to pull together but still classic style.

18 Pans of ’18: May

Items used in May: 6

Total this year (thus far): 40

I have really enjoyed the two things I’ve tried from the Soo Ae brand, I would love to try something not in a foil packet. I really did not enjoy the Jergens – it ran down my legs and got all streaky AND smelled like self tanner! I think the traditional Natural Glow would be much better.