These Days – Vol. 5

It’s mid-month, so time for another These Days check in!

These days, I am…

Craving garlic fries. Mr. Cook and I went to a baseball game last night and I couldn’t find any garlic fries anywhere in the whole stadium. Don’t they know the fries are why I go to games?? I had to make do with some delicious barbecue. Poor me.

Interviewing candidates for the agency I volunteer with and for my employer and for my alumni association’s scholarship program. Lots of meeting new people and shaking hands. (If you find yourself on the other side of the desk soon, here are some useful interviewing tips.)

Wearing one of these and realizing I’m just not a tattoo person (even though I think some are really beautiful and I still want to try these).

Drinking green tea because the weather is finally changing and I miss caffeine.

Reading Anthony Bourdain’s Medium Raw. He’s just one of those cool dudes you wish you were cool enough to hang out with.

Watching Dexter again after forgetting about it for a few years (and remembering that, like The Walking Dead, I should not eat while viewing). I’m on Season 5 now…I can’t believe I have so many seasons to catch up on!

Ogling Elise Joy’s September Make 29 project – gorgeous handmade clutches. I also just ordered a couple of her discontinued stamps. Yay!

Debating whether or not to purchase a photo printer. Do you have one or have recommendations?

What are you up to these days?


The Wednesday Web: Gender Politics


Photo source: Dunno…Old tyme-y places? Click on the photo to go to an interesting article in which it appears.

We’re going deep today, folks. Get ready to get serious. (And interesting, and well-read, and prepared to think about life and stuff…)

Can we talk about just how screwed up gender politics and privileges are these days? The tech sector gets a lot of flack for its lack of diversity (both racial and gender-based), but I’m not sure there are any industries that are fully doing right by all members of the workforce. This whole gender presence gap, performance double standards, and (even more astoundingly) the STILL PRESENT AND SIGNIFICANT gender wage gap is so 1960s. It all makes me feel like this and like this. The sexism isn’t confined to the office, though. Women are constantly under attack in other spaces, even powerful women. And are we still really arguing about reproductive rights??

But, there is some small measure of hope. I appreciated this list of 35 Practical Steps Men Can Take to Support Feminism. Eff yeah. (Especially #6, #15, #20, #23, and #34.) And there are industry leaders who are willing to acknowledge that “Friends and colleagues often ask my wife how she balances her job and motherhood. Somehow, the same people don’t ask me,” and do this in response. And young men who are growing up knowing that feminism is for everybody.

Patrick Stewart is my Hero

Photo source: Click the photo to follow the rabbit trail…

I could rant about this at length, but I won’t. Not today anyway. But, I’d love to hear your thoughts and constructive responses. WTF is going on out there and what can we do about it?

Feminism Tank Top

Photo source: Wicked Clothes (click photo to purchase)


Music on Monday

I’m already looking forward to the weekend. That’s less about wanting to get through the week than it is about how much fun this coming weekend is going to be. It’s reunion time with some of my favorite people ever in one of my most favorite places ever. Heck yes. Bring it. This song is already running through my head in anticipation:

(No, we won’t be in West Virginia…but somewhere definitely off the beaten path, up some country roads.)

This entry was posted in Music.

Mom Wisdom: Doing a Body Good

I don’t know where summer went, but it’s going, going, gone now. I can hardly believe that the kids are already back in school. Somehow it’s a whole new school year and we’re already discussing Halloween costume ideas. Crazy!

MMmmilk and cookies

Fortunately, our kiddos are eager learners and excited to be back in the classroom with their friends. G had an easy transition into 4th grade, since he already knew his teacher and all of his classmates. B struggled a bit with her first week of 5th grade, though. She has a new teacher this year and most of her friends in her 4/5 classroom were a year ahead of her so they’re now in middle school.

Poor B was anxious her first week back, so I made sure to do some small things that I knew would help her with the transition. As I learned from my own mom ages ago, a healthy lunch helps you focus in school and do your best even when you’re in an new situation. For B’s lunches, I made sure to include her favorite healthy snacks – plenty of fruits and  veggies – plus I made ham and cheese sandwich wrap pinwheels (with spinach, avocado, and red bell pepper — girl loves her veggies!) to give her a fun take on a traditional lunch item. She loved the pinwheels and requested them every day that week.

B is a kid after my own heart, too, so I made sure to tuck some new fun supplies into her backpack (My Little Pony pencils will help her do great, of course!). Plus, I tucked a special note into her pencil box to give her a little pep talk and let her know how much her dad and I love her. We’re big on love notes in our family.

Then, because it also helps to have something special to come home to, we had milk and cookies at home after school. B loves her milk and has a sweet tooth to rival her dad. While I am a chocolate milk addict (it’s good for my bones!), B will happily gulp down big frosty glasses of the pure calcium goodness not even caring that it’s full of nutrients that are good for her hair, skin, teeth, muscles, and more.

Got Milk?

I know, a kid who likes vegetables AND prefers milk over other drinks…kind of a dream, huh? Don’t worry, G gives us food challenges. We’ve taught both kids, though, which foods (and beverages) will make their bodies happy and help them grow up strong and healthy, and milk is definitely on that list.

We’re heading into week three of school now and B is starting to feel better about things. We’ve had some heart to hearts about making new friends, visiting with old pals, and how quickly her new classmates and teacher will feel just as familiar as her old ones. I’m sure *next* summer will be here before we know it, and I’m sure there will be plenty of milk and cookie heart to hearts between now and then. Because while some foods are good for your body, some also just make you feel good, too.

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own. Like being obsessed with chocolate milk. It’s true. Also, thanks to Auntie M for the yummy oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. :)

The Wednesday Web

Today’s links are all about how-to’s. From the simple to the complicated, I am always interested in learning how people do the things I wish I could do better or wiser or some other “-er” than I’m already doing. So, let’s take it from the experts (i.e., people who already figured this stuff out):

How to teach your kids how to use the internet.

How to tell a bedtime story.

How to fill in your eyebrows. (I learned this from an eyebrow expert a few years ago – it makes a surprising difference!)

How to make perfect (for you) hard boiled eggs.

How to make homemade ginger beer. Yum!

How to effectively end a presentation at work.

How to (and why to) doodle more.

How to get what you want (from an airline agent, or anyone you’re asking for a favor).

Don’t you already feel so much smarter?



Bedroom Art Query

Bedroom Tapestry on ApartmentTherapy

photo credit: Jenny Kaplan and Chris Corrado for Apartment Therapy

Do you have artwork over your bed?

This is a conundrum that Mr. Cook and I have struggled with since we moved into our apartment two whole years ago. We have a less-than-amazing plain wood bed frame, great mid-century dressers, new gorgeous linens, a couple of framed posters on the walls, but nothing over our bed.

I’m getting tired of the plain wall look, so we’re starting to brainstorm decorating ideas. One consideration we have to keep in mind is that we live in earthquake country. So, it would be unwise to put anything too big, too heavy, or too unwieldy over our heads at night. Anything we put up has to be firmly secured, because no one likes waking up to a concussion.

I kind of like the idea of a soft art piece like in the picture above, either a weaving or a tapestry. I’m not entirely sure I can sell the 70s vibe to Mr. Cook, though, and I know something like that would gather dust like crazy.

The giant engineering prints that you can have done inexpensively at office stores or online are certainly eye catching. But, I’m having trouble figuring out what I could have printed up that large that I would want to look at every day. And the idea of having a big glass frame over our heads while we sleep is a little unsettling. A canvas print would certainly be safer, but I haven’t seen any that particularly inspire me lately.

We’re definitely not the kind of couple to have big inspirational statements or romantic photos on our walls. I’m thinking something more abstract, geometric, or nature-inspired. This looks super cool, but I am pretty sure our landlady would object. This would make our already messy room look even more cluttered.

Do you have any great ideas for us? How about you – what do you have over your bed?


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