the best way to kill time

June 29, 2015

Sam and I are on our way to Austin today! We are so so excited to explore a new city. To spend some time in the sunshine, eating all the barbecue we can get our hands on and taking some time to enjoy a week off from life’s responsibilities.

We really need this.

Sam is a crazy person when it comes to traveling (i love you, samu). And I feel like I can say this, because I am the keeper of time, but he gets really stressed about having enough time at the airport. This results in us having about three hours waiting at our terminal, which is not all bad when you have some good books and music to listen to.

I thought that for this trip that I would also gather some links that I find interesting to read. And I thought I should share them with you. Sharing is caring.

11 things to remember when you think you’re not good enough

14 perfect French phrases we need in English

How to ease your fear of flying

The best Instagram accounts to follow here and here

The best ice cream spots in every state

I love these photos from Balboa

Moscow Mule is my favorite drink!

The hilarious way to recognize an artist’s painting

This furniture hack looks so cool. Be sure to watch the video!

How beautiful is this DIY marbled pitcher? Answer = SO COOL

I hope these help you kill some time! I’ll be back soon with some Austin pictures soon!

Catch ya on the flip side

E

Play That Funky Music

June 28, 2015

spotify

My Spotify music got a bit out of hand over the last year.

I was a late bloomer to Spotify, but since I made the switch, I’ve never looked back and use it for all of my music listening needs. During my at-home yoga practice, while at work and for marathon training. I started out with a bad habit of just “staring” the songs that I liked and all of these songs jumbled together in one huge playlist.

It was absolute chaos.

Bon Iver would soothe me with his sweet, raspy voice and then immediately after Britney would scream at me about how she’s toxic. Believe me, there is a time and a place for Britney, but while I’m trying to write an email at work, or trying to get my zen on at home is not that time or place.

So, I’ve finally started organizing my music into playlists, and my life has never felt more organized. I don’t know why it took me so long to do this. I knew I could, I just never did. Hello laziness.

Anyways, if you want to listen to my newly organized playlists, here are some of my most loved:

Calm + Cool. Perfect for early mornings sitting on your porch, in the sunshine with coffee in hand

Fun Fun Fun. Pump Up the Jams type music. Feel good and energy inducing.

Total Zen. Ideal for all your yoga or meditation needs.

Run Girl Run. My favorite running songs, over five hours of music. This bad boy got me through the Chicago Marathon last year.

What are your favorite Spotify playlists? Let’s do a swap!

xo, E

Mortified

June 26, 2015

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Have you listed to the Mortified podcast? I really suggest you do if you haven’t already. It’s tears in your eyes, hold-back-your-laughs-on-the-bus funny.

Basically, adults read their journals, diary entires or letters that they wrote as kids in front of an audience. They sharing their preteen and teenage secrets, questions and overall cringe-worthy moments to total strangers and the results are so good. It seems like 75% of the reading are about relationships and/or sex (because hello, awkward high school years), but some include hilarious fan mail they wrote, or letters to Jesus (which I guess could count as fan mail?). It’s so funny. I promise you, give it a listen.

Listening to mortified immediately gets me thinking about the insanely embarrassing things I wrote about in middle school and high school. I have kept a journal ever since I can remember and they all currently live in a box at my parents house. When I visit home, one of my favorite pastimes is reading through them. I can sit for hours in the walk-in closet where the box lives and read and laugh at the embarrassing and sometimes inappropriate things I wrote about.

My journal entry topics ranged from idolizing over a friend-of-a-friend who was Canadian, Jewish and had braces (all of the cool things, obviously), to reciting conversations I had with my mom when I asked her what certain “sexual things” meant, like when I asked her why everyone made fun of EJ Hymen’s last name.  Yeah, so cringe-worthy.

Did you keep a journal growing up? Would you read it out loud for everyone to hear? I’m not sure that I would..

xo, E

 

Summer Reading List

June 19, 2015

These days, the sun is shinning longer, the air is thicker and life is just a little bit slower. It’s great and certainly needed after a whirlwind first six months of 2015. June came and it felt like a huge sigh of relief. We made it through the crazy winter weather, Sam and I survived our move and now we can enjoy all that summer has in store for us.

We have a lot of fun things lined up for the summer already. A few fun trips (Austin being one of them, which I’m so so excited about), Chicago festivals and so much more. But what I’m most excited for? Lazy sunny afternoons, spent at the park, on a blanket with a good book.

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To me, summer reading feels so right, and I always seem to create a list in the spring of books that I want to devour come summer.

Here are the books that I plan to read over the next few months:

+ The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion + I actually just finished this book and I couldn’t put it down. It was so good. A really silly (I laughed out loud at certain parts), but lovely story. I recommend you read it if you like a good quirky love story.

+ Cartwheel by Jennifer Dubois + This one is a dark story, but murder mysteries are a guilty pleasure of mine. In Cartwheel, an American student studying abroad in Argentina is found killed. The synopsis I’ve read sounds eerily familiar to Amanda Knox.

+ The History of Love by Nicole Krauss + After reading that one of my favorite bloggers calls this book her all time favorite, I knew I had to add this book to my list.

+ Quiet – The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking + The title seems self explanatory. I am definitely an introvert, I prefer listening to speaking and would love to hear about success stories of other introverted individuals.

+ Snoop – What Your Stuff Says About You + After reading The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, I’m really focused on my belongings and the items I fill my home with. This book seems like a good follow up.

In The Unlikely Event by Judy Blume + All of my middle school dreams are coming true. Judy Blume wrote another book and I’m so excited. To be honest, I would read any book that Judy Blume wrote, no matter the topic. But this one seems pretty interesting. In true Blume fashion it’s about a 15 year old girl’s trial and tribulations.

What are you planning on reading this summer? Also, have you heard of the website What Should I Read Next? It gives you recommendations of what you should read, so your summer reading lists can be never ending.

Happy reading and happy summer friends!

E

to market to market

June 15, 2015

This weekend marked the official start of summer in Chicago with more festivals and markets than we knew what to do with. Sam Fred and I went to four festivals this weekend. FOUR. We’re unstoppable.

The summer festivals are a main reason why I love living in this city. With so many different people from so many walks of Earth, it seems like there’s a festival for every thing and every one. Andersonville (one of my favorite Chi neighborhoods) had their 50th Midsommer Fest this weekend. Andersonville is the Swedish neighborhood and of course all of the best things come from Sweden. Lingonberry pancakes, wooden toy horses, Sam Fred (!!) so we obviously had to check it out. I’d say the people watching was the best part and although I was really hoping for an ABBA band wearing sparkly lycra bell bottoms, the Johnny Cash cover band was pretty solid.

We also made a guest appearance at the Old Town Arts Fest, Rib Fest (which was eh, but LITERALLY in our backyard so how could we NOT go??) and the Green City Farmer’s Market. The Farmer’s Market happens every Saturday, so I’m sure we will be visiting it much more in the coming months.

Below are a few photos from the Farmer’s Market. I’m dying over the peonies right now and need to take all of the photos of them before they’re gone until next year. Why are you in season for so little time peonies. whyyyy?!

samerica

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strawberries

bagels

peonies

hotellincolnpickles

 

gimme all dem pickles.

Writing letters

April 27, 2015

Did you know that April is/was National Letter Writing Month? I love that there is an entire month dedicated to the lost art of writing letters. I am the biggest fan of writing letters and sending cards in the mail. I mean, I work for a stationery company after all.

I realize that the month is nearly over (how did that happen?) but I think that writing letters should be something that is thought about all year long. There is nothing more exciting than getting happy mail among all of the bills and unwanted catalogs that usually fill our mailboxes. I love receiving letters so much that I have kept every card and letter that I’ve received since I was 16. I have a few shoe boxes filled with with my letters from old high school friends, birthday cards and simple notes sent to just say hi.

Sending letters is such an inexpensive way to show someone some love. All you need is some paper, a stamp and some thoughtful words. It’s basically free. Of course I’m also an advocate for cute stationery and cards, so I thought I’d share with you my favorite stationery and card companies

Snow & Graham – now, I’m biased because this is the company I work for. But S&G makes such cute cards. If you are into floral, girly patterns, you’ll definitely find lots of great cards to choose from. One of my favorite note-sets we carry is this cute daisy print.

+ Rifle Paper - probably the most well-known of all the card companies. There are so many cute designs to choose from. I love their postcards.

+ Egg Press – Such cute and quirky cards. You’ll definitely find a card for your “funny, out-there-type-humor” friend. This sasquatch card is everything.

+ Our Heiday – Really simple but beautiful cards with dramatic paint strokes and gold foil lettering. They seem more like artwork than cards. The colors in this card are so beautiful.

+1Canoe2 Letterpress - So many cute drawings and fun lettering techniques. I love this cooking inspired birthday card.

 

Where are some of your favorite places to buy cards from? Or do you make your own cards? (That’s my favorite thing to do.. maybe more on that in another post).

Happy letter writing!

xo, E