Friday, May 31, 2013

keeping it clean | the 5 minute sweep

I bet you thought I forgot about this series.  I did, but then I remembered again.  Twice.  I drafted this post about a week ago, then forgot about it.  I have a few more on the burner!

My favorite cleaning tip/trick is the 5-minute sweep.  For the most part I do it every night, and if not I take care of it first thing in the morning.  The sweep is married to my favorite cleaning principle, "a place for everything, and everything in its place."  It is exactly what the name entails--an intentional 5 minute blitz of putting away anything that isn't in it's home.  Clothes get hung up, shoes put away, dishes to the drying rack, etc.  I rarely pull out cleaning products, it's just a run through of my space.

Speaking of putting things away, do you have any specialized spaces for stuff?  Some of my favorites are:
  • Keeping a stash of bandaids (well for me, paper tape and gauze) in my knife/sharp things drawer in the kitchen.  When I cut myself at home, it's usually in the kitchen and I consider it genius having those things at hand.
  • Having a set of cleaning products in the room they clean.
  • Zoned-places.  For instance, anything sharp in my kitchen lives in the "sharp drawer."  All adhesives (glues, mod-podge, different kinds of tape) in the house are in one place together (except paper tape).  Magazines stay together, games stay together.  Everything in its place.  :)

Thursday, May 30, 2013

oh shi-NGLES.

On Monday night I was at a family BBQ, and felt something weird on my neck.  I asked someone to look at it--it wasn't itchy, it just felt weird.  Friends had a look, didn't know what it was, so I carried on.  Tuesday, it still there.  Wednesday, still there, with another outbreak on my chest and some swollen lymph nodes.  The lymph nodes had me calling the doctor.  I explained my symptoms (non-itchy red rash and swollen lymph nodes), and was expecting to get a called-in prescription for a cream that I could get and go on with.  Instead, I got a call back for an appointment the next morning (today).

I went into the appointment anticipating hearing something lame like "heat rash."  What I wasn't anticipating--SHINGLES.  He had to tell me twice because I didn't follow the first time.

So, here I am.  27 with shingles.

In case you're curious:

  • I am way, way more tired than usual in the afternoons.
  • I've had an on-again/off-again fever for a couple days.
  • Stomach cramps.
  • Headache that comes and goes.
  • Rash (obvi).
And if you're even more curious, the treatment is:
  • Horse pills (anti-virals)
  • Topical steroid cream
  • Cold compresses
I asked the obvious question, "what caused them?" and the response was, "are you under more stress?"  I don't think so, but maybe I should engage in more de-stressing activities like...
  • Iced coffee runs
  • List making
  • Crossing things off of said lists
  • Painting my nails red
  • Fashion blogging
  • A long run in the morning (Dr. Google said to exercise if it makes you less stressed, done & done).
  • Fun weekends
Good thing all of those are on the horizon!

Monday, May 27, 2013

best weekend | may 2013

Y'all.  This weekend could NOT have been better.  I mean one, any weekend that has 3 days already is set up to be a good one.

was just excellent.  I yard-sailed with a friend, did a good run, and had a really fun afternoon & evening.

rivaled Saturday on the fun-o-meter.  Great morning, followed by the sweet treat of seeing my favorite G's from Tennessee,

before hosting a Mary Kay party for my newest & favorite Mary Kay consultant, Rebekah (if you need MK, you should contact her.  She's wonderful!).  After the party Rebekah came back over and I made dinner and we played a game.

I woke up 4-stinking-30. And again at 5.  And once more at 5:15.  And lastly at 6 before sleeping till 7ish.  Apparently as I was falling asleep on Saturday night I set every single running alarm I had, instead of just the one I needed for 6:30.  Anyways, I had some morning time, did a 7-mile run with the fabulous Endomondo app (you should get it!  It's free and fun!  Thanks Erika for the heads up!),

 cleaned up around home, went to the pool (shade),

and went to an amazing cookout for dinner.  Now getting ready for the week (AKA, waiting for my laundry to dry.  Refrigerator oats are donesies) and off to bed, ready for a four day week!

summer fun list, check in number one

I'm making progress on the summer-fun list.  I am up to trying 4 beers (let's be honest.  This is an easy one--out at dinner, order a new one, another notch on the list), and I had a delightful morning of yard-saling on Saturday.   And speaking of yard-saling, anyone planning one soon please heed this simple note--use.  good.  and clear.  signage.  Oh my stars!  If I can easily find your yard-sale I arrive in a better mood, which usually makes me more inclined to look, which may lead to a purchase.  Just saying.  The friend who I was yard-saling with hit GOLD--vintage handbags, jewelry, napkins, dishes...I was SO excited for her!  Oh yeah.  Going shopping with me is like going shopping with a cheer-leader.  I'm probably going to get pretty thrilled about your purchases with you.

Look at my finds so far this season!

Solid wood bar stools:  $10/set

Dresser for the guest room!

Bed for the guest room!  (My guest room is going to have a bed frame and I still will not, ha ha!)

Cut glass bowl

And I've found a few picture frames and a necklace.  I'm exercising incredible self-control this season and not just getting it if I really like it and it's at a good price.  It has to have a home and purpose!  For instance, one yardsale had a ton of vintage cloth napkins at LOW prices.  I love cloth napkins.  But I walked away because I knew that they were just not something I needed.  Clearly, I'm still proud of myself.  :)

Bestie has started a new job in NYC, and we have taken to sending each other a photo of our outfit each morning.  It's definitely a fun way to start each morning with, especially since she lives a few too many states away and I don't get to see her nearly often enough.  I'm having a ton of fun starting the day this way!  Here are my looks from the past week--

My observations:
  • I did not wear trousers once last week.  I consider that a pretty good week.  :)
  • So, the pink skirt.  I was trying to smooth it out and the steamer wasn't cutting it.  I pulled out the iron and was working on it and the next thing I know the skirt is melting to the iron.  Boo!  Fortunately the pattern hides the gaping holes I made.
  • I think I have to get rid of the blue dress with green cardigan.  Good problem, it's too big.  But, it's a jersey knit dress that is one of my favorites.  Whine whine, into the swap party pile you'll go.
  • I realized on Friday that I needed to vary putting my hand on my hip.  Less back-ache pose for me!

Friday, May 17, 2013

HF4F | May 17

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1.  Carrot soup.
Poor roommate.  I monopolize most-everything-in-the-house the freezer space, and I had a couple bags of carrots taking up a ton of space.  I decided it was time to start eating through the food in my freezer and whipped up this beauty.  I boiled potatoes & carrots in chicken broth, cooked garlic and onions, pureed all that in the blender, added some spices, and donesies.  And delicious, omg.

2.  Dinner with this gal
Love catching up with my favorite Brookie!  While my meal was disappointing, the beer and company were not.

3.  Packing up the Honda
I really should put it onto my resume somehow how extremely skilled I am in packing up my petite-car with too-big Sam's trips.  That load there--a cake walk.  And no, that wasn't all for me--I was shopping for work.

4.  Staff time this week
I'm real glad I didn't over think it, but the Sam's trip was for work because we served a community meal for those in need on Thursday (hence the cute staff shirt I styled with the most unflattering skirt I own and scarf) and after all was said and done, I became terrified that I didn't buy enough food (I'm a chronic over-buyer for food for events).  Again, glad I didn't over think it because I ALWAYS buy TOO much, and there was plenty.

*And I forgot to upload the picture, but we celebrated one of our birthdays this week with a coffee party, and that's always a good time.

5.  the Summer Bucket List
Have you seen it?  Pinned it?  Because it's awesome.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

THE summer fun list.

With the start of every season, it seems that Pinterest becomes laden with seasonal "to-do" lists.  I always get really into the seasonal spirit looking at these lists, but then reality hits.  These lists, while full of fun & exciting things, all seem to require that you:
  • Do not have a job (to have time to do all the things on the list)
  • Have money without having a job (to pay for the things to do on the list, which kinda negates the first bullet point)
  • Have children to do these things with
I have a job, and in the summer I have the same amount of time as spring, fall and winter.  Yesterday at lunch after seeing some of the aforementioned (very cute, don't get me wrong.  I'm not a list Scrooge) lists, I had the epiphany to make a summer-fun list with my friend Erika that was a bit more reasonable.

So I give you this:
the budget-friendly SUMMER FUN bucket list for 20-something, child-free, spouse-optional, 9-5 job holding people.

Doesn't it look SO FUN??!!??  Here's to an exciting, intentional, and FUN Summer 2013.

In case you're having trouble viewing the .jpeg, this list has fun things like:

eat fro-yo for lunch
try 7 new beers
eat at a rooftop restaurant
go to a farmer’s market
have a picnic
attend an outdoor concert
go to a yard sale
go to a baseball game
go swimming
go kayaking
eat strawberry shortcake
make homemade popsicles
have a game night
grill out
learn to craft a new adult beverage
get a pedicure
see fireworks
pick berries
go fishing
ride a bike
practice dSLR photography
try a new summer fashion trend

Sunday, May 12, 2013

a complete lack of photos.

That's what has been lacking in my life this week--photos!  I had a mostly fantastic week, full of good food, thought-out outfits, a time-intensive craft project, and excellent people.  And the only blog-fodder photo I have is a picture of a ankle and foot all bloody from falling in a parking lot (that I won't share with you.  That was reserved for sending to Nutan.)

Good Food!
Tiff said this week on Thursday, "you've been quite the Betty Crocker this week."
This week for various dinners and people I made:

  • Peach cobbler (with peaches frozen from last season, YES.)
  • Two huge and delightful salads (favorite salad trick...just add fruit in some capacity.  It instantly elevates the quality and presentation of your salad).
  • Refrigerator oatmeal
  • "Healthy" shakes (ice cubes, unsweetened cocoa powder, a frozen banana, and milk)
  • Chick pea burgers
  • Israeli couscous (potentially the best grain I've ever had)
  • Praline blondies
  • Mediterranean roasted vegetables
  • French toast casserole
See, tastiness!

Thought-out Outfits
For me, I consider a thought-out outfit to be one that includes:
  • Jewelry
  • A scarf
  • Actually done hair.  
Y'all, I did that EVERYDAY last week.  I even pulled out a blazer with bermudas on Friday.  I was pretty proud of that one.

Time-Intensive Craft Project
A friend is going to Africa for 7 months (Idon'twanttotalkaboutit), and for her I asked friends to send me scripture, funnies, and encouragement, and put them on stickers, and put them on a calendar for everyday for a month.  It involved photos, washi tape, scrapbook paper...happy.  But probably not pinterest worthy.  ;)

Excellent People
Friends from Scotland!  Dinners!  Nutan from NYC!  Z!  

And all I have to show from these sweet times is a bloody foot.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

H54F | May 3

fashion.  food.  friday.  High Five for Friday!
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1.  Getting over jet lag
I made one of the smartest decisions I've made in a while by having it be that I'd only have a two-day work week last week after coming back from Bali.  Doing so let me experience the depths of jet lag during the weekend.  I'm almost over it (evenings are still really rough), but I'm sleeping more than 3 hours a night, so I consider that a move in the right direction.

2.  Favorite color combinations
I've been celebrating this delightful spring weather by wearing dresses without tights.  Hurray!  I haven't put a ton of thought into my outfits this week (thanks, jet lag), but I did wear one of my favorite summer dresses, in one of my favorite color combinations (black and brown), with my favorite shoes:

Dress:  Loft | Espadilles:  Clarkes | Belt:  Gap | Earrings:  Charleston sweet-grass basket weaving

3.  Broccoli & Chicken and Asian Slaw
I haven't cooked in weeks, and I'm making up for lost time this week.  I hosted a friend for dinner last night and made a broccoli & chicken combination over rice and an asian slaw.  No photos because we were too busy eating it.

4.  Stripes and lace.
I wore this the week I left so I forgot to post this pic, but it's one of my favorites to wear:

Skirt:  Banana Republic | Shirt:  Loft | Necklace:  Entourage | Flats:  Target

5.  Refrigerator Oatmeal
On my nightly to-do list I have a new item "prepare oatmeal."

Go and fix this tonight for yourself tomorrow.  Your welcome.
*In mine I use 1/2 c. oats, 1 tbsp. chia seeds, a lot of cinnamon, a handful of raisins and craisins, a tiny amount of honey, a few chopped up almonds, and 1 c. milk.  I was putting flax seeds in there, but those are useless if not ground up, so those have since been kicked off the menu.  Combine dry, add milk and honey, stir well, cover, and keep in fridge at least 5 hours.

Happy weekend!