Pride Prep

I know that half of us just celebrated Pride, but for some of us we have another week or two! I will be attending the Pride Parade in San Francisco, and I am invigorated by the bright rainbows popping up around me.

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Rainbow twins made me chuckle. An inflammatory rainbow tee is always a good choice for parades, parties, or rallies.

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A friend who isn’t attending SF Pride was very sweet and made all of us pride friendship bracelets! If you don’t have a friend who can magic up knotted jewelry in ten minutes, then you should definitely check out Tattly’s arm bands!

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One member of our group will be rocking these Chucks with a secret kick.

Taylor Bennett, a Chicago local, partnered with Urban Outfitters for a old school meets millennial pride collection. Oh yeah, Taylor’s brother? Chance the Rapper.

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Are you hosting a party after, or BYO to the festivities? Use these glam rainbow cups! Add some Crazy Straws, because you can.

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Reflections & Intentions (a Monday Series)

I am so inspired by the Intentions posts by Shutterbean. Last week, I posted Monday Reflections of the weekend and the week to come. Welcome the official Monday series, Reflections & Intentions.

 

Reflections (weekend):

-kayaked AND rock climbed

-spent more time outside than inside

-demolished extra-large pizzas and Mom’s out of this world homemade ice cream with my parents and sister

 

Intentions:

-clean the counters, clean my clothes

-rock climb inside and outside

-run every day

-go to the beach

-schedule all necessary health appointments

 

Intentions turned Reflections (last week): 

-start a new book

-stay calm

-visit my family

Best Purchase!

I made the best purchase this month! Meet the huaraches for which I have been searching for so long.

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I bought them for only $30 (!) (really!) from Pamela, a maker on Etsy. I ordered the shoes without a lacquer, for a natural finish. Look at this sweet charm she included, made from the scraps of other shoes!

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Saturday at the Market

A Saturday spent at the market is a Saturday well spent. How cute are these succulent boots? They would be an easy DIY/upcycling project for your front porch! And look at the happy puppy in the little red wagon! Happy Saturday!

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3 Things

 

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Photo by Entre Prises

Now that it is warm outside, I can’t wait to try out the Maggie Daley Climbing Wall in downtown Chicago! Now that I am a badass climber, I am psyched to spend my summer on the wall, and in the open air. I imagine people peeking out the windows of their apartment and seeing me at their level!

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Sometimes I feel like all of the food posts I write are about cake or salad. This represents the greater dichotomy between my health and my happiness, perhaps. I’ve learned that when it comes to the mint-chocolate combination, people love it or hate it. If you love it… how amazing does this look!

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I really, really wanted to attend Camp Man Repeller, and I was prepared to pay for the camp events and stay, but I could’t afford a plane ticket and since Chicago is still in school, I couldn’t drive to New York! I didn’t have enough personal days, and my car can’t really handle it. Next year. Next year. Anyway, it looks like their first year of Camp MR was a mad success. Check it out!

 

 

The Skincare Routine That Helps Me Fall Asleep at Night

I am meticulous about maintaining standard skincare routines, such as washing your face before bed, applying various topicals daily, using masks several times a week, but there is one thing I realized I have been completely overlooking: my feet.

I rarely give second thought to the strain that my feet endure. I run most days, and then spend the rest of the day on my feet in some sort of flat or dress shoe while teaching. After school, I am often climbing, which has me in tight shoes that squish my toes, which I am then putting all of my weight directly onto those squished toes. As soon as I stop wearing a winter coat, I start wearing sandals, and I don’t look back until I need that coat again. At the end of the day my feet are always very tired, and in sandal weather, they are also dirty.

My mom has always recognized the value of foot care. When I was little, after a muddy soccer game in restrictive cleats, she would have me soak my feet in the bath tub and then she would rub an invigorating lotion on- usually grapefruit, or mint. This was a thoughtful and refreshing gesture, but somehow I have never been self-inspired to care for my feet myself.

Yesterday my feet were the usual after-school soreness, and really dirty from playing outside with the kindergarteners, so I soaked my feet in a bath salt/ baking soda combo.

Here is the DIY game changer: I filled a small bowl with sugar, and squeezed half a lemon into that bowl of sugar just before scrubbing my feet with said lemon-sugar. This was AMAZING. My feet tingled and my muscles relaxed; the dirt and dead skin was easily removed from my feet, and my legs and feet completely relaxed from the mini-massage. I used the whole bowl of my lemon-sugar scrub, and exfoliated my ankles and calves, too. Bonus: follow up with a tingly mint lotion for ultimate relaxation and easy sleeping. Sometimes I hesitate to lotion up because my feet still feel a little gross from the day (I am a morning shower kind of person) but I will no longer neglect my tired achey feet.

The only other times I have done this were in extreme situations, like right after finishing a hike in the grand canyon or after days of walking in a European city. My sister jokes that the dirt specs tan onto my feet, so my feet look perpetually dirty, even when they are clean. This lemon-sugar scrub minimizes that look!

Do you have a self-care routine that helps you relax instantly? I would love to hear about it!

In the Handmaid’s Head

 

I am totally engrossed in The Handmaid’s Tale. This show is SO FREAKY. When I am not drawing parallels between the lives of professional women today and the trajectory of our politics, I am dying to get in the head of these poor Handmaids, and learn what they are thinking. Of course… we can.

I just started reading the book! Now that I finished this one I can move on to a darker novel. My sister is currently reading The Handmaid’s Tale, while keeping up with current episodes of the show. We watched the latest episode together last week, and she explained that the book and program move at different paces, and the sequencing of the store is off. A relationship or event has occurred in once, but has not yet appeared in the other. This gives her a funny foresight into each story, and many events are not entirely unexpected.

Another thing affecting her anticipation of “what next” is the fact that we don’t know how much will be covered/revealed/invented in the tv show compared to the novel. Come on, are any shows just one season anymore?

Tripstagram: Danish Summer Birthday Celebration

I have written before about my experiences in Denmark, and thanks to Facebook memories I have a few more photos and experiences to share. While I was there, I had a birthday where I got a sampling of Danish birthday traditions, and then I was “the help” (I was working as an au pair) setting up a birthday party for the youngest daughter of the family.

One cool thing about Danish birthday celebrations is that they start first things in the morning. The family comes to wake you singing the birthday song and waving Danish flags, which double as a birthday celebrations.

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The flag is flown outside when there is a birthday in the house. The red and white colors of the flag can be seen in the gorgeous table setting for the birthday morning.

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One special, traditional dish that was prepared for the party was this meaty roll, which had some sort of cut of meat inside, which was then wrapped in essentially meatloaf, and them wrapped in bread! The mother of the family made two of these, and it was a bit labor intensive to assemble them and roll them up tightly.

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The party took place in the sunny garden with all sorts of family and friends. It was a fun cultural experience to talk with the locals about life in America and life in Denmark.

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This is the special Danish layer cake decorated for the birthday! Filled with pancake-like layers separated only by a creamy frosting, and decorated in the traditional pink color, topped with little Danish flags! This treat is all sugar 🙂