Pajama Crush

For some period of 5-10 years growing up, every Valentine’s Day my family would have a nice meal together, a special dessert, and then we would receive a special gift. Pajamas from Mom, and plants from Dad! This was a tradition that just… emerged. I think that plants are the frugal version of flowers, they keep on living, and they are easily found at the grocery store, but MAN receiving a live plant always feels like a special gift. And February is so cold and dark there is nothing more comforting than new pajamas! Some of these PJs are inspired by my family’s Valentine’s tradition and combine my affinity for plants and pajamas. Since I am still holding off on personal spending, this is a wish list or hard hint to my family or boyfriend.

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Speckled pink and a classic robe

Resting Bitch Face is a Defense Mechanism

I was just talking with my sister on the phone, and we were comparing times we were scared shitless while traveling and escaped it. You know, the kind of scary thing you didn’t tell your family about at the time it happened, because they would be really worried about you? We discussed how men literally do not ever have these concerns. Most men never walk down the street with a constant inner monologue of “Will I be assaulted today? Is that old man going to tell me to smile more?” We had an epiphany: Resting Bitch Face is a Self-Defense Mechanism.

And we’ve both used it as one! My sister and I each had multiples accounts of times that a mad straight face and deaf ear might have saved our lives. I checked your previous content, and their are references of RBF sprinkled throughout many conversations about feminism and the general life of being a woman, but this perspective is unique. Of course there are opportunities to link related MR content Do You Have a Resting Bitch Face? and Feminism and RBF, but this perspective is not “what do you do about RBF” or “RBF is an issue with the way men perceive women” but about the fact that sometimes, when you are on the subway alone, you put on your biggest, baddest bitch face because you don’t want to talk, and you don’t want to hear it. Sometimes that angry frown while to stare blankly in the distance is the only way to get a little fucking security and peace and quiet while going about your day to day life. Bitch face is the ultimate Man Repeller.

Gift Guide for Wisened Storytellers and Givers of Great Advice

All of my friends call their mom. ALL the time. I call my mom all the time. My dad and I exchange cat photos with simple captions: “cat in box,” “uh-oh,” etc. My parents are also at an age where comfort and function reign supreme. When choosing gifts for them, I look for things they can use, and things they will use.

MC-B-LG-GG-2They deserve the niceties. Splurge for a pair of luxury slippers with detachable soles so they can get the mail while keeping their feet warm in soft lambswool. Bonus: the soles come in your choice of 8 colors.

The inconveniences of aging (going to the doctor more, keeping track of new medicine) don’t have to be ugly or messy. This elegant pill box is especially good for anyone on the go, and the company Port and Polish only makes pill boxes. With one product to focus on, it must be good! Buying one for everyone? Choose three for $45 (now $40). 

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The Saj ball foot roller is like a tiny spiky foam roller for your feet. Drop one on the floor, and roll it against the bottom of your foot for an easy massage. Sure, you can buy them a pedicure, but that lasts for one day. The foot roller lasts a life time!

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More on the topic of slippers you can wear anywhere: sleeping bag slippers. That’s not their real name, but these look like all day sleeping bags you can wear on your feet, and are the ultimate camp/lounge shoe.

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The squatty potty, but only for close family. And maybe not the gift you give at the huge holiday party. 😉

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Smartwool socks, because you know they want some and you also know they would never pay for them!

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A biography of Alexander Hamilton. Here me out: 5 years ago, your dad is the only person you could ever imagine reading a newly released biography of Alexander Hamilton. The magic of the musical Hamilton is that it merges history, a topic well understood by older generations, with pop culture that younger generations are entrenched in. Buy yourself a copy (or watch the Drunk History episode with Lin Manuel Miranda for the condensed version) and discuss the heated relationship of Hamilton and Burr next time you visit.

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Does your dad make his vacation photos the screen saver on the computer? Mine does. Take his photo-bragging game to the next level with a large digital picture frame. This device accepts photos from the user friendly USB plug-in.

Reflections and Intentions

Reflections
-I’m really tired.
-Spent precious time with my family.
-Spent a lovely Sunday afternoon watching my boyfriend play with the Elgin Symphony.
-Trained hard at the rock wall and had healthy meals planned in advance (food diary coming soon!) and watched the number on the scale go down.

Intentions
-Climb a V2 at the rock wall
-I’m climbing outside and camping this weekend!
-Get more sleep. (Tuesday night maybe?)
-Do more things that aren’t Netflix. Bike. Play piano. Play a long game of chess.

Intended
-Get my car fixed for significantly less than the car is worth (goodbye, Midas. It’s over.)
-Adjust work/life balance. The first week of school had me there two hours early and two hours late most days. I am paid for a 40 hour week, not 60. Figure out how to get it all done efficiently. Lists. Lots of lists.
-Visit my family.
-Keep working on that side hustle. Finally hang advertisement for private lessons.
-Do all of my food prep at the beginning of the week!
-Don’t purchase anything except groceries and maybe one more pair of leggings for my climbing training
-Get consistent with the blog!

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Vacations: Good, Bad, and Beautiful

Now that we are in the height of summer and people are starting to think about back-to-school shopping, I have been finding the most amazing reflections on summer vacation! Here is my vacation round-up, for one last dose of adventure and summer freedom before we start thinking about school and fall layers.

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I have been watching for this post since the author came back from vacation. These photos from a girls backpacking trip in Alaska are so striking. I have definitely added this to the list of trips I would like to take.

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Joy shows some love to Detroit, and honestly, I’m convinced. The food looks great and it sounds like she found beautiful pockets of the rich culture and history of the city.

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The trip to Joshua Tree that went horribly wrong. I held my breath through the entire story. I can’t imagine the agony she was in.

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An old episode of This American Life all about summer camp. Warning: squeaky pre-teen boys and very loud, high-pitched screeches from the young ladies of the camp.

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Photos from the Goddard family vacation give us all that final nudge to start saving for a trip to Italy. From Rome, to Tuscany, to Venice, Joanna captures the best of each region. And there is an Uber for Vespas???

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And finally, please check out my own summer vacation experience in Alberta, Canada. We backpacked in Banff, had tea on a mountain, and hiked to glaciers and hot springs in Jasper National Park.

Dad Gifts (Last Minute Card Idea and Belated Amazon Orders!)

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I’ve been thinking about getting this card for my coach at work. I think it is the perfect template for a Father’s Day DIY: what did your dad teach you to do? Mine taught me to identify tree species by their leaves and bark.

I asked Dad for his chili recipe once, and he gave me a stream of consciousness on a notecard. It would probably be really confusing for anyone who is not his child to read, but it is very personal- I hear it in his voice as he walks through how to chop the onions and which spices he adds in, and when. I think that this onion chopper would streamline the process.

Are you constantly stealing Dad clothes? I am sure my dad wonders what happened to all of his t-shirts and flannels. Pay him pack for all of those winning outfits you “borrowed” with a tee that represents programs he loves. Get him some National Park gear, these parks tees, or help him rep public radio.

Neil deGrasse Tyson seems to be quite the pop-culture figure, lately. I have seen him showing up in interviews, and he has a new book out: Astrophysics for People in a Hurry. For anyone who watched Cosmos with their Dad as a kid- this is for you. Also check out his Amazon shop with colorful pro-science tees!

Admittedly, I always forget about these occasions until the last second. I don’t shell out much money on these Hallmark holidays. I’ve learned that my parents would rather have me call them or pay a belated visit home than mail expensive stuff that may or may not be useful. Just be sure to call the father figures in your life!

Summer Resolution

Why do we save resolutions for the new year? I am always reinventing myself, and summer is no exception. Reflecting on the spring, I hiked The Grand Canyon, became a climbing badass, and started this blog! I feel rich in experience and prosperous in opportunity.

Looking ahead, I am less financially prepared for the summer than I planned to be. Please see this post to learn how I wanted to save and what mistakes I planned to avoid… mainly I was hoping to have enough saved to not rely on my credit card. Oops. (Side note: teachers don’t get paid enough).

I have seen some Summer Bucket Lists, and maybe I will write one of those in a minute, but this is a little more than that. Like a new year’s resolution, this is a goal for me to dedicate myself to throughout the summer. Additionally, I would like to start working on these goals now, and not wait until I am truly on summer break.

Summer Resolutions, 2017

•Run every day because I feel good when I do

Climb at least once or twice a week!

Play my instrument

•Camp and hike a lot

Write and call my grandparents

•Spend more than two weeks with my family

Develop this blog

Any summer resolutions yourself? These are small goals, and at various points in my life I have maintained some/all of them. These are actions that bring me satisfaction, and I look forward to a healthy, prosperous, and loving summer.

 

Summer Snapshot: Acadia National Park

This photo is of my sister on Eagle’s Crag in Acadia National Park. She and my brother are soaking up the summer on a parks roadtrip along the East Coast.

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This road trip is my sister’s graduation gift to my brother. I am so jealous! I’ve never been to Maine, and her Snapchats of the ocean are incredible. Look at this amazing ice cream they had!

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