Monday, August 29, 2016

Weekend Fun

Last Friday I had a relaxing night at home with the girls while Luke went to Broadway Oyster Bar with friends. On Saturday we had a party in the afternoon and planned the morning to wear out the girls with the hope they might nap beforehand. We went to a nearby farmer's market and then to Bolyard's Meats in Maplewood. I have been looking for a locally sourced butcher shop and Becky recommended Bolyard's. I purchased the Meat for the Week option - a pound of deli meat, ground beef, breakfast sausage, pork chops, meatballs, summer sausage, bacon, Italian sausage, fresh pasta sauce and fresh pasta from Pastaria, a quart of stock, and apple ketchup - for $100! A very good deal I thought. Very smoky is my initial reaction - loved the bacon, so so on the meatballs, froze the rest. I look forward to getting steaks next time.

Back at home we went swimming and did get the girls down for a nap; we woke them up for the party. The party was an indoor-outdoor kids-invited work function and I hired a sitter to help us out. Even so I couldn't chat much because helicopter mom life:

After the party, we met my mom in a parking lot and she took the girls for the night and we went off to a happy hour at a friend's house and made new friends and took them to see Becky and Stu at the Royale. PARTY TRAIN KEEPS ROLLING! On Sunday I went in to work, my mom returned the girls, and I took Josie to Hanna Andersson for their fall wardrobe. Which reminds me -- always shop HA in the store! Online, full price. In store, oh, everything is 30% off.

[work work work work work]

This Friday I worked late, picked up delicious delicious Indian food from a place recommended by my colleague AND 0.5 miles from our place for dinner, and Brett and Elise arrived from Chicago. In the morning Elise and I went to spin and yoga, picked up deli sandwiches for lunch, and my parents picked them up to head to the ballpark. After our sitter arrived we drove downtown and walked to the stadium.

St. Louis, you're a pretty lady.

After the game we went to BrickTops for a late dinner (have you had the deviled eggs?!) We had a lazy Sunday morning, sleeping in and watching Zootopia, until Brett and Elise departed. It was a great time with the fam. So, so, so good to be so much closer to everyone.

The day before I asked friends over for dinner and ordered fried chicken and sides from Dierberg's earlier in the day. Maybe I should stick with impromptu(ish) parties ... if I have more time, I make more plans, plan out more recipes, get anxious, find myself making dough at 10:30 pm that requires two rises, get more anxious and cranky and wonder WHY DOES HAVING FUN HURT SO MUCH?! At long last I've gained some insight into this complicate-everything-and-stifle-the-fun tendency aaaand only made biscuits from scratch because I had all the ingredients on hand but otherwise got out of my own way and simply had a good time preparing some food, buying more, and getting our weekly meal preparation (bacon and eggs, pork tenderloin and veggies, and taco meat) done at the same time. And it was a wonderful time with old friends and new friends! Let go and let Dierberg's. 🍗🍗🍗🍗🍗

Sunday, August 28, 2016


// Clementine within earshot of the middle-aged woman she was observing walking to her apartment: "LOOK AT THAT OLD LADY! She's going to go inside, change her cwothes, and go to bed." [All behaviors she is familiar with from observing her mother.]

// We gave up on the girls sharing a room but before we did we would instruct them as we closed the door: "No talking! No talking!" Now when we announce it's bedtime Josie immediately pipes up NO TALK, NO TALK but it sounds more like nuh tuck, nuh tuck. Luke and I like to mimic this later like it's Josie's secret Russian accent.

// Josie had a speech evaluation and she does have a delay but nothing too serious and she doesn't qualify for any state services. Her receptive language is advanced for her age, though, and the speech pathologist described her as "fiercely independent." Verrrrry diplomatic.

// In a fit of "we should do more Montessori things!" I bought this knife about six or more months ago. I allowed C to use it once and deemed it too sharp and I secreted it away. My mom brought a loaf of banana bread over last week and I suggested that C cut it... to which she responded, "with my orange knife?" I was astounded that she would remember it; we used it once and never discussed it again.

Thursday, August 25, 2016


Some new favorite products:

// Dr. Jart Ceramidin body oil and body cream. I love this oil because it sinks into my skin almost immediately and [in the words of Clementine] makes it 'so sof'. An oil that's not oily.


// THESE ARE AMAZING. The Estee Edit's Inside Track eyeliner goes on so smoothly - zero tugging - and stays put all day. I haven't used a primer and this hasn't budged all day. One color is sold out online but my Sephora had all the shades yesterday. My only fear is that it won't sharpen well because its softness.

// Hand cream, day: I'm fond of Supergoop because they are a San Antonio company. Sephora carried this little starter kit recently and I like all of the products a bunch, especially the serum and eye cream. I don't think eye cream is essential but I like the reminder to use SPF close to my eyes. The texture of the serum is exactly what I look for: sinks in and isn't too matte or too shiny. Typically I don't buy scented lotion but really like the subtle spicy scent of the hand cream, which I apply to the backs of my hands before driving. THE PRICE OF FREEDOM IS ETERNAL VIGILANCE! I'm very happy to use cheap titanium dioxide sunscreen for that application -- but will definitely buy the hand cream on a day when some retail therapy is in order. Like tomorrow or later tonight when I start thinking about tomorrow. 


// Hand cream, night: My sister Elise is a Lush Cosmetics fan and this hand cream I picked up with her in Chicago is fantastic. Now that we're in a climate with winter I have to stay vigilant or I develop 'crone hands' overnight: dry, cracked, and red. The Lush store is a fun sensory experience too.

// Speaking of Lush, another product I like a lot that makes wearing clothes in a hot sticky weather LESS of a sensory experience is their Silky Underwear dusting powder. Another good one: Jack Black Dry Down.

Friday, August 19, 2016

What's Making Me Happy This Week

// Dinner with Gracie at Our Place: Nordstrom West County. White chocolate bread pudding and look at us! In the Salon Shoes ooooo la la!

// Nuts by Nature cashew butter from Costco is soooo delicious.

// This $12 manicure from a place 0.8 miles away. Look at that hand modeling. So relaxed and natural. The color is Kings & Thieves from Smith & Cult.

FIRST DAY AT THEIR NEW SCHOOL! How cute are these bunnies?!

// Finding this brand of flexible-soled clogs. I haven't tried on yet so will report back after purchasing... purchasing all of them. (Reminds me to start my personal Kicks-starter campaign for my shoe collection).

Have a great weekend, friends!

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Babes, Badass Babes, and Pizza on the Porch

My mom texted me on Friday to ask if she could take the girls overnight and we were all BE OUR GUEST.

She and C went to Pete's Dragon and Josie and Grandpa Bob watched the Olympics. I worked late and Luke ordered Indian food; we watched the Olympics and I worked on the blog; we wondered, could this be every Friday? Mom brought them back in the morning for our splash pad playdate with Brooke and Jen and their boys:

The most darling boy.

This is his "smile!" face. 

Back home for naps then I headed to Cherokee Street for a Badass Babes Tour with Amanda's tour company Renegade STL. That's right - Amanda had an idea and she worked [and worked and worked] and her brainchild is a badass in its own right. My friends make me so proud!!!!

Friends, please, book a tour! My tour took us into parts of the city I've never seen before. They lead many themed tours but - get this - will put together a custom one for your group. Recently they led a family reunion tour for a matriarch's birthday (whom Amanda interviewed until the guise of something else) and the family piled in the bus with the surprised grandma for a tour of Important StL Landmarks in Grandma's Life -- how freaking cool is that?!?

Elizabeth, co-guide and badass intern.

Picked up three houseplants at Flowers & Weeds across the street from the tour departure point, StL-Style.

Back home to get ready for the babysitter...

Then off to Olio and the Royale with Stu and Becky. Fun!

On Sunday morning we went to the gym (childcare on Sundays!) where I read the New Yorker and Cook's Illustrated while cycling at 1.2 mph on the stationary bike. Lunch at home followed by popsicles. Josie had issues.

We had planned to meet up for a concert at Carondelet Park but it was rained out. Because I had promised C that we would pick up cupcakes for the concert, we bought them anyway. C had the idea to have a picnic outside and when we arrived home, a pizza deliveryman from Jet's was in our parking lot. That's funny, I thought. Luke's been wanting to try Jet's. Then the man went to our door and I started to laugh*.

*Not as hard as I laughed when at the grocery store-->

Clementine: What are those?
Me: Cotton balls.

Margaritas from a can.

This is C's "smile!" face. Might need work.


I like Josie's style.

It's 11 pm now and we've watched our 3 hours of Olympic coverage and the girls have just fallen asleep and a soft, steady rain is falling ... life is good. Hope you had a great weekend, friends.

First Days

A few snaps from our first days in St. Louis.

We had a day and a half to move in before the girls arrived.

The Gramophone used to have a stage in this very spot, and we got married there.

Jenny brought over mini cherry pies her mom made. ★Sherri's food is always amazing.★

Meeting up with friends at Tower Grove farmer's market. Now remembering to Amazon Prime a bubble machine.

This splash pad will make every blog post until October.

I think this could be a really funny meme.

We dropped off some books at my office (see the suitcase? #classy) and the hospital happened to be hosting a kid's fair that morning. It was sweltering that day and I didn't have their hats or any sunscreen but we stayed long enough to eat a free hot dog.

Here I am that same day showing off my first manicure in 5 years, a shellac that was indestructible for three weeks.