Friday, May 30, 2014

while you were busy making other plans...

The other day I was sharing the story of how Dr. H and I met in college and slowly, over all 4 years, became best friends before we started dating. For some reason, telling the story got me thinking about how I was never "supposed" to go to GW and that even through my first few months there, the plan was to transfer to Georgetown. I never did (#HailtotheBuffandBlue) and perhaps that's the very moment in my life that made  marrying Dr. H my destiny. 

Being the planner that I am, it always strikes me when I realize that plans, while comforting, productive and often necessary, don't always determine where we're going to end up. No matter how specific we set out to be, how determined we are to chart a course, sometimes life unfolds in a way that we never could have expected. So maybe this weekend look back and find those moments of happenstance that brought forth your greatest victories (the friend who became your husband; the random introduction that led to your dream job; the "wrong turn" that led you the "right way") and just be like "thanks universe, that was pretty freakin awesome". 

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Hump Day(ish) Distractions

Life before Instagram...
Since this is only a 4 day week (and yesterday we gots a little sentimental, girl power-ish up in here) I think it's definitely appropriate to be humping the day today. So here for your clicking pleasure is a heaping pile of goodies which will hopefully get us all to tomorrow, which is Friday(!!) I see you buddy... and I'm comin for ya!

* 17 beautiful Maya Angelou quotes which will remind you of her profound greatness.
* Sis and Mom, I think a field trip to this place for custom lipstick is in order.
* You all know I'm a cleanse-er... thinking of trying this one, recommended by Team LC. Thoughts?
* The Onion nails it again.
* Just in case you're planning a trip to London.
* Governor's Island is an awesome summer-in-the-city spot. Here's their 2014 calendar.
* Very cool, INEXPENSIVE art made from your own pictures!
* Think I need to purchase one of these (also maybe an excellent Father's Day Gift?)
* Funky/chic nail art that you can absolutely execute at home.
* And finally, since it's been a while since we had anything aca-awesome around here, THIS.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

In Celebration.

In celebration of a beloved friend and a lifelong inspiration, a poem...

~ * ~ * ~ * ~
Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I'm telling lies.
I say,
It's in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It's the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can't touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still can't see.
I say,
It's in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I'm a woman

Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Now you understand
Just why my head's not bowed.
I don't shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It's in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
'Cause I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me. 

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

96 elephants per day

Elephants live as families and show great emotional bonds for one another.
Did you know that 35,000 elephants, or 96 per day, were killed in Africa in 2012? Sadly that's the truth thanks to demand for ivory and continued illegal poaching across the African continent. And the effects go far beyond just those elephants that are killed... As poachers target the older matriarchs for their large tusks, a generation of young, orphaned African elephants is growing up without guidance. During Tanzania’s drought of 1993, matriarchs that endured a similar event decades earlier knew where to lead their herds for food and water. Groups with matriarchs too young to remember the previous drought lost more than half of their calves that year.

Thankfully there's an easy way for you to lend your voice and help. 96 Elephants is an awesome organization which is using activism, social media, an incredible coalition of zoos across the world and key partnerships with organizations like The Clinton Global Initiative and Walt Disney World to raise awareness and fight for change. 

So what can you do!? Join the growing herd!!!
* Click HERE to sign the petition pledging not to buy or sell anything made of ivory and to support government efforts which declare a moratorium on the sale of ivory. (It's so easy and it's a free way to help make change!!)
* Check out other ways to be an advocate HERE (like calling for an ivory ban law in your state, stopping the glorification of ivory sales on tv and more)
* Raise awareness with your kids (or your class if you're a teacher!) by taking an "Elphie". Learn more about the Elphie movement HERE.
* Follow 96 Elephants on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to raise awareness amongst your friends.

And finally, here are some key facts to share as you encourage others to take a stand:
* Few of today’s poachers hunt elephants for subsistence; most are commercially driven, heavily armed criminals. 
* Illegal poaching and wildlife trafficking is the fourth largest transnational crime. Ivory—sometimes called “the white gold of jihad”—helps fund the military operations of notorious terrorist groups. 
* The tusks are removed in a brutal and cruel fashion, often with an ax while the elephant is still alive.
* The Wildlife Conservation Society working alongside rangers, ecoguards, rural communities, government officials, and even Labrador retrievers to turn the tide for elephants. From radio-collaring elephants on the ground to monitoring their populations overhead, from training and equipping local rangers to deploying ivory-sensitive sniffer dogs at key transit points, WCS is fighting to save elephants every day. 

Friday, May 23, 2014

Peace out homies.

3 DAYS!!! 3 WHOLE DAYS!!!!
Friii-day... FRiiii-Day.... FRRRII-DAY.... FRIDAY... FRIDAY! WOOOOO!!! I feel like a deserve a freakin medal for surviving this endless week, but I will happily accept a long weekend instead!! Here for your viewing pleasure as we collectively count the minutes until quitin' time are some goodies of the Memorial Day and generally cool variety. 

This post from Domaine Home is a soup to nuts (or shall I say dip to pie!? hehe) summary of how to host the perfect Memorial Day weekend get together. Now who's inviting me over!?

And because who doesn't love a thematic cocktail (in a mason jar of course:) click HERE to learn how to make that America-tastic Patriotic Punch (or Pin it for July 4th HERE).




Have a wonderful weekend!!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Strange (Healthy) Snacks.

Recently I confessed to Dr. H that I love pork rinds. Specifically BBQ seasoned pork rinds (available for 99 cents per bag and the perfect solution for your late afternoon "I want something crunchy, crappy and snacky" right nows). I know, I know, you are probably cringing "pork rinds!?!"... allow me to stand in defense of these cripsy delights: 
1) a 1-ounce serving of pork rinds contains 0 carbs, 17 grams of protein and just 9 grams of fat. To compare, that's 9 times the protein and way less fat than your average carb-laden snack size bag of potato chips (source)
2) 43% of pork rind's fat is unsaturated and most of that is oleic acid which is the "healthy fat" people praise olive oil for!
3) BBQ seasoned pork rinds taste delicious! They are far less greasy than chips and have an airy quality that doesn't sit guilt-ily in your stomach after eating

So sure, judge me all you want for the pig skins, but as far as snack choices go, pork rinds definitely should have your consideration!! As for other "strange snacks" I enjoy:
- beef jerky: again, super high in protein (which keeps you satisfied longer!), no fat, few carbs and tons of flavor. Plus, it's sold in 100 calorie packs!!
- wasabi soy almonds: protein and flavor... a bit higher in fat, but like pork rinds it's the healthier kind of fat (which FYI my body loves all fat equally, (right on my hips) so I try to snack on these a little more discerningly)
- hard boiled eggs: are you sensing a low carb/high protein theme here?
- pickles: like eating flavored air

What about you? Do you have any strange, but healthy snacks that you're willing to share in the light of day?

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Hump Day Distractions

Shut up with this ridiculously random adorableness.
And then the never ending week reached Hump Day and Merry Meri declared, "hark! I can see the weekend in the distance! onward ho!!" For reals. Let's get on with it shall we!?

* A bit of inspiration for us all from one man's near death experience on an airplane.
* I cannot tell you how much self control it has taken not to buy THIS. (I'd be all "yel-low!? Banana Phone here!")
* This mom tackles the tough topic of explaining sex for pleasure (as opposed to just procreation) to her young son. It's an interesting read.
* Get your Gatsby hair on.
* A veggie/mexican skillet for dinner tonight anyone!?
* I want to go to there.
* Everything you need to know about for this summer in NYC.
* It's your journey. Own it.
* Never knew how so many of these foods grew (via exPress-o)
* Sure to make you smile, meet Biddy the Hedgehog (he's obvi my new fav Insta friend)

Finally, I made a super awesome sandwich for lunch yesterday and I was so pumped about its tastiness that I'm going to a) eat it again today and b) share it with you:
- 1 Toufayan Low Carb Pita (only 3 WW points and it's BIG!)
- Boar's Head Low Sodium Turkey Breast
- Thinly Sliced Granny Smith Apple
- Robert Rothschild Wasabi Ginger Sauce (gives it a nice little kick, awesome compliment to the apple!)
I whipped this bad boy up in 2 minutes in my office kitchen and was so happy with the result that I was literally announcing to my cubicle mates that my homemade sandwich was "f*cking awesome" (ya gotta take the cheap thrills when you can get em, AmIRight!?)

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

cook it out, cook it in, let me begin...

"I was born in the wrong decade..."
This post brought to you by the fabulous 

Sun, glorious sun! Thank you for (finally) showing up. When it gets sunny, I start thinking about getting together with friends and family, letting the kids run wild in the backyard, drinking some sangria, and eating yummy, yummy food (preferably prepared on a grill). This is the stuff dreams are made of. Or at least summers. 

When I hear "cookout", I have some go-to dishes that immediately pop into my head, for a few reasons. They're relatively easy, and are always, always crowd-pleasers. I thought I would share them with you - since the weekend of epic cookout proportions is upon us.

I fought the slaw, and the slaw won.
I've made this so many times, I no longer need the stained, wrinkled, ripped recipe card. I've made a few adaptations. No sunflower seeds, not sure why, probably because I didn't have them the first time I made the recipe. I take the seasoning packet from the second package of ramen noodles and add it to the melted margarine (instead of butter, and I only use about 2 tbsp...Ms. Deen definitely put her butter stamp on this recipe) to toast the almonds and raw noodles. And I use less oil, a little over half a cup. Nothing like taking a vegetable and ruining the nutrients of it by adding butter and oil!

Let it simmer on low low heat for as long as humanly possible. That is all.

*Key Lime Pie (or Lime Custard Pie)
I say that because this is still delicious using regular limes even if you can't get your hands on key limes. I believe this is the recipe that Joe's Stone Crab uses (via Food Network). About 6 years ago, I searched and searched for a legitimate Key Lime Pie recipe. This is the one that I put on a recipe card, so it's what I use, but I do not have the original source. 

so key-ish, so lime-ish
1 homemade graham cracker crust (I'm sorry to be demanding, but it must be homemade). For key lime pies, I like to use cinnamon sugar graham crackers (fun, right?)
1 (14 oz.) can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 c. fresh squeezed key lime juice
2 tsp. key lime zest
2 egg yolks
fresh whipped cream
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together yolks and zest. Then slowly add the condensed milk, then whisk in lime juice. Pour into prepared crust and bake for 15-25 minutes, until solid (no longer jiggly). Let cool and chill it in the fridge. Serve with fresh whipped cream.

Not classy, fancy or unique, but man, are they ridiculously good. Sometimes, for people I really love, I swirl in some peanut butter.

Jan's Brownies
from the cookbook Just a Matter of a Thyme by Roxie Kelley

1 cup butter or margarine, melted
2 cups sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
4 eggs
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder 
1/2 tsp. salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream together butter and sugar until light. Beat in the vanilla and eggs. Add cocoa, flour, baking powder and salt and mix well. Pour into a greased 9x13" baking pan and bake for 23-25 minutes. Frost with chocolate icing, or sprinkle with powdered sugar, or swirl in smooth or crunchy peanut butter.

Or forget baking or cooking - just stop by Costco and grab a gigantic bag of Brownie Brittle and a jar of peanut butter and you'll be everyone's favorite person for ever and ever.

For all things fabulously (parent)thetically speaking, click HERE.

Monday, May 19, 2014

"Chicago, Chicago I will show you around..."

Guess who's baaaack!!!? Did you miss me? Apologies for the unannounced radio silence at the end of last week, but I was travelling for work and just couldn't pull off the juggling act. But now that I am back in action, I thought I'd give you a fun little detour from my usual "all about NYC" posts and share some favorites from Chicago.

First off, let me just say that I LOVE Chicago. Granted I have never been in the dead of winter, but with each visit I make to Chi-town, I fall a little more in love. I'm a sucker for a good cityscape and the architecture in Chicago is unrivaled, plus much like NYC (and other "I could live here" favorites like Boston and DC) the city is truly urban, with people walking from place to place, using public transportation, enjoying beautiful parks and living all throughout (as opposed to cities where people primarily live outside the urban center). Having visited several times now, here are some favorite eats and adventures from lovely Chicago. Any of you have something to add to the list!?

I have had a lot of awesome meals in Chicago and think it's safe to say that their cuisine rivals (in both diversity and deliciousness) the best Manhattan has to offer. 
Homestead - Ate here on Saturday night, can't remember the last time I loved a meal so much! This farm-to-table spot has an inventive menu intended for sharing so you can taste tons of unique dishes in just 1 visit. Every ingredient is fresh and dishes are served at a leisurely pace so you can enjoy every bite!
* Piccolo Sogno (due) - For straight up awesome Italian eats, from antipasta to pizza or pasta, head to Piccolo Sogno or its second location Piccolo Sogno Due.
* Lou Malnati's Pizzeria - NY and Chicago may not be able to agree on how to make "the best" pizza, but there is no denying the incredible deliciousness of a tasty Chicago deep dish pie. Check out one of Lou's many locations to judge for yourself.
* Rudy's Bar and Grille - After strolling Millennium Park, you're probably going to need a place to throw back a few beers and watch "the game" (whatever sport may apply!) Rudy's is located just off the park, has lots of tvs, a great beer menu and their bar food is totally top notch (the Breakfast Burger anyone!?). Plus they serve most of their burgers and sandwiches on pretzel buns (YUM).

                                                                                     To Do
"The Bean" in Millennium Park is a Chicago landmark
There's no shortage of activities, planned or leisurely to do in Chicago, whether you're young or old, into being outside or in.
* Architectural Boat Tour - if you do one touristy thing in Chicago, I say do this. With the Chicago River flowing right through the middle, the best way to learn about the history of the city and its beautiful buildings is on one of these boat tours. There are tons to choose from, just click HERE.
Millennium Park - This park has it all: green spaces for lounging, cool sculptures, art and plazas, an awesome stage for performances and a super convenient location. Be sure to visit Millennium Park if for no other reason than to snap a fun picture of your reflection at Cloud Gate (aka, "the bean"!) 
* Wrigley Field- It doesn't get more iconic than a Cubs game at Wrigley Field. Built in 1914 and now the second oldest MLB park still in use, check out a game from inside the stadium or watch from one of the perfectly situated rooftop bars surrounding it.
* Navy Pier (and Children's Museum) - Located along the shoreline of Lake Michigan (the only lake I've encountered that's so big it doesn't skeeve me out!) the Navy Pier has an awesome collection of carnival games, rides, restaurants and even a Children's Museum (never been but read great things).
* Shop the Magnificent Mile - Just like 5th Avenue, but in Chicago. An awesome mix of affordable and "just looking", stroll the Magnificent Mile down Michigan Ave and shop until you drop!
* Walk around - Chicago is a walkers dream. Lots of wide, clean sidewalks, public parks, bridges, beautiful buildings and unique, distinct neighborhoods make Chicago the perfect place to spend an entire day wandering. Biking more your style!? Just like NYC's Citi Bikes, Chicago has a bike share program with racks throughout the city.
* Still on my "to do" list: The Shedd Aquarium and The Art Institute (because obviously I need reasons to come back!)

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Hump Day Distractions

Awww hehe.
This morning, halfway down the stairs to exit my apartment building for my scheduled weekly workout, a little voice in my head said "Meri, you forgot to pack a bra..." And I said "really little voice? How do you know that?" But with no time to waste, just to be sure, I ran back up and straight to my dresser. Sure enough, my black bra was in there, not in my gym bag. I thought to myself "Thanks little voice! Today is going to be a good day". Here to ensure that good day are some delightful distractions from around the web.

* Some super tasty looking 2 ingredient sandwiches. Yum. (via CupofJo)
* Tina on women's body image. God I love her! 
* It always strikes me as funny that actors campaign for awards, but they do. And these Emmy campaign posters from the cast of Mad Men are pretty freakin good.
* Do you work from home? Dr. H used to and based on his experience, all these tips sound like a great idea.
* Good for you Natalie! All beautiful bodies are created equal!!
* "I think if we met I would find you insufferable" and other missed connections of the hysterical variety
* If you love Billy Crystal or Mindy Kaling, or both, read this (super cool behind the scenes When Harry Met Sally info enclosed!!) 
* Have you heard of oil pulling? I am kinda skeptical, gonna have to consult Sis (20 minutes!?)
* Behind the scenes of the Photoshop treatment for all those food pics that make us salivate!
* I think I've shared pics of this duo before... but who cares? Here's more!! (thanks Sis!)

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Celebrity gossip, my vice.

... you guys. I can't stop wondering about what exactly went down between Jay-Z and Solange Knowles in that Standard Hotel elevator. Like honestly, what went down in that elevator?! Is the video even legit?! I've spent all my spare "post something on the blog" time this morning scouring the internet for news and conspiracies, like a dirty paparazzi, digging into a story that should be none of my business

But despite being fully aware that this is some "scum of the earth" level celebrity gossip nosiness, I can't control myself. I love all things Carter-Knowles and this scuffle is so outside the perfectly manicured image they project of themselves, I'm desperate to know what happened. Was Solange, whose music I happen to love, justified in her outburst? Whose side is Beyonce on!? This post is like a shameful confession: I, Merry Meri, am a celebrity gossip addict. Now someone please tell me what happened in that elevator!

Monday, May 12, 2014

A Weekend to Remember.

Not to toot my own horn or anything... but this past weekend I pretty much rocked Dr. H's birthday socks off (toot TOOT!!) There were surprise visitors and festive dinners, late night shenanigans and even horseback riding. We ate like kings (and drank like fish) and overall it was just one of those weekends that reminds you that these are truly great times.

Since now I look and feel kinda like THIS, I thought the best thing to do today was give you a little recap of some of our adventures since I heartily recommend everywhere we ate/drank/went/played.

* Friday - La Esquina & Brinkley's
Do not be fooled by the "taco counter" storefront at street level! Walk in the main door, head down a flight of stairs and through the kitchen (literally) and you end up in a cave meets-awesomely decorated bar and sit-down restaurant space. Though La Esquina can be a biatch to get a large group reservation at (one month in advance, limited space, etc) their price fix menu includes copious amounts of insanely delicious food which go quite nicely with their awesome cocktails. For a regular dinner, arrive early, make a reservation or be willing to sit at the bar and La Esquina will be a chic and tasty night on the town.

I've walked past Brinkley's dozens of times, but post-La Esquina (just around the corner in Soho) was my first time heading inside. The bar had a great atmosphere, a decent number of tables and barstools and though it got crowded as the night went on, it never filled to the "whose armpit is this in my face?" capacity that I detest. Gonna have to head back for eats sometime soon!

* Saturday - Coffee Shop, Union Square Farmer's Market & Ginny's Supper Club
Rising and shining(ish!) on Saturday morning our crew of 6 (siblings and 1 tiny niece included!!) headed to a birthday brunch at The Coffee Shop in Union Square. This spot is a go-to for me in the neighborhood with a menu filled excellent options (brunch or lunch/dinner) at reasonable prices. Items like the "Hangover Sandwich", pancakes, french toast and steak and eggs were hits all around my brunch table and the atmosphere is always lively (plus outdoor seating!) Reservations recommended if you want to avoid a wait.

I absolutely love the Union Square Farmer's Market. The produce, flowers, cheese, baked goods, meats, fish, (Martin's Pretzels!) and more are fresh, delicious and locally sourced. Though it can get a bit crowded on beautiful Saturdays, arrive early and get the fresh stuff before the crowds. (Open M,W,F,Sat 8am-6pm, more info HERE)

Below the (deservedly hyped) Red Rooster Harlem restaurant, is Ginny's Supper Club, a modern reincarnation of the glamorous Harlem speakeasies of the 1920s and also serving delicious eats by chef Marcus Samuelsson.  Our table for two had a prime view of the wonderful live jazz performance and the food was Ah-MAZ-ing. From the chicken and waffles and deviled eggs appetizers to our "Helga's Meatballs" and Mac and Greens (a mac and cheese of epic deliciousness in my humble opinion!), every bite was more delicious than the next. I even glutinously enjoyed the homemade ice cream sandwich for dessert because... BECAUSE. If you like live jazz and you want a glam, unique, DELICIOUS night on the town, reservations at Ginny's Supper Club should be it. (Note - you can also just buy tickets for the performance and drink/listen at the bar in the back!)

Dr. H is obsessed with horses (strange, but true) and somewhere in my birthday surprise hype-building we developed a running joke that I was getting him "a stallion" for a gift. The stallion jokes invaded daily conversation so much that I felt I had to do something horse-related for my beloved equine-enthusiast. Recalling an episode of Sex and the City where Charlotte went riding in the city and turning to our trusted friend Google, I discovered Kensington Stables located just off Prospect Park in Brooklyn. Bizarrely situated just like any other business on a city street corner, the stable is home to more than 20 horses and for the reasonable price of $37 you can take an hour-long ride through the park (including an only-in-NYC, is this really happening? horse ride through a traffic circle to get into the park!) The horses are all beautiful and riding through the city park was truly a unique experience. Kensington Stables also offers lessons or for just $3 your kiddo can take a pony ride up and down the block. Not too shabby NYC, not too shabby at all.

Friday, May 9, 2014

An ode to (old man) Dr. H

Make a wish!
There once was a boy named H, from Albany he did hail,
filled with personality, a bit of mischief and smarts, plus on a euphonium he did wail.
And when the boy became of college age, off to George Washington he did go,
and thanks to a summer camp boyfriend connection, a girl named Meri he came to know.
Mer and H became fast friends and sparks began to fly,
but alas their love was not mature, he chose another girl (we still don't know why).
But from 18 to 19 and 19 to 20,
their friendship continued, their adventures were plenty.
A cruise in the Caribbean, Redskins football, Jerusalem and late nights in the dorm,
21, then 22, slowly their hearts began to warm.
Love was declared at the end of GDub and a relationship was made official,
then she headed to New York City and him from DC to LA and Mer nearly blew the whistle.
But true love prevailed and by 25 they were living together,
at 26 he got down on one knee and they decided to make it forever.
11 birthdays since the first they celebrated as friends,
tomorrow Dr H turns 30, today "we're in our 20s" officially ends.
But no matter the decade my "older man" is perfect in every way...
so here's to you my husband, I love you and Happy Birthday!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

For Mom

The moment you're "mom". Beautiful.
Mother's Day is coming up this weekend and even though everyday is Mother's Day in my humble opinion (I mean seriously!!) here is a roundup of inspiration from around the web to make sure your Mama knows just how very much she is loved. (Love you Mom!!)

OhHappyDay is pretty much my favorite resource for holiday related crafts and gifts-piration and Jordan does not disappoint on Mother's Day. Click HERE for links to her gift ideas (the first set of images above), click HERE for the (FREE!) printable template for her seriously sweet banner and party kit and click HERE for 7 crafty cute DIY ideas.

Is there a new mom in your life!? Want to send her something extra sweet and useful!? This "New Mom in a Box" kit from YouAreMyFave is super simple to pull together, but will no doubt be viewed as a special and thoughtful gesture. (Plus, it's important to make sure Mom feels the love while everyone is coo'ing over the baby!)

For those more mature ladies with mature Mama's I think "versatile spring clutch" is a safe and sassy gift go-to. Belle over at CapHillStyle just did THIS post on spring/summer clutches and I love everything she suggests.

I think there is something totally charming about these Atelier Stella planters and vases (website to buy HERE, originally spotted on Honestly WTF HERE). The sort of gift that will make Mom smile and think of  you every time she sees it, place your order today and give Mom a picture of the purchase along with a plant "to be planted" on Sunday to hold her over until the pottery arrives!!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Hump Day Distractions

Today is Wednesday. Today is Hump Day. Lordy get me over that hump!!

* HOLY inspiration, every one of these smart, beautiful, powerful mamas.
* You should really read what this sleep doctor has to say.
* For my fellow Game of Thrones geeks. Amazeballs.
* Where to buy cheap art.
* And while I'm getting my inner geek on, want to see how much thought went into the NYC subway signage?!
* Just purchased. Will let you know if I'm able to get my pinup on this summer.
* An absolutely adorable denim apron (because who says the chef can't look chic!?) (via exPress-o)
* Holy crap that's cool.
* Don't worry, THIS sweet pair is still lovingly snoozin the days away together.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

For the Kiddos

Melt my freakin heart...
With friends makin babies at a somewhat more regular pace lately (here they come!) I've been exposed to more and more kiddo paraphernalia, inspiration and apparel of the absolutely adorable variety. So here for all you Mommy, Sister, Auntie or beloved Friend types is the next installment of "For the Kiddos"!

Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus, a beloved (and adorably illustrated) kids book for this tiny generation is part of a series!! I never knew, but I think I will be gifting several Pigeon books in the future, including his newest bath time adventure.

Oh man... so efficient, looks adorable and no more cutting up sandwiches into tiny pieces!! Click HERE to purchase the Fun Bites Squares from Amazon and be sure to browse all the other adorable shapes they sell! (Pin it here)

So apparently "balance bikes" are all the rage these days. I see them all over NYC and one of my favorite chic mamma bloggers over at Lady and Prince is always raving about her kids' Strider Bikes. The goal is apparently to work on balance first (even as young as 2!) then get to the pedaling later. HERE is a great roundup of all the best (at least in Babble's opinion!) balance bikes on the market.

I could see this "go fishing" DIY being perfect for distracting your little one on a long line, an airplane or just on any boring afternoon. Small enough to tuck in your purse and very do-able from a craft standpoint, click HERE for the full instructions from Doodle Craft.

Is there anything more adorable than a plush rocker?! I think not (says the auntie who purchased a pastel cow and airplane for her niece and nephew respectively!) I love these adorable rockers as new baby gifts because they're unique and will last a while (first as decor in the room, then as a ride on toy for 2-3 years). Plus, has an amazing selection at very reasonable prices HERE.

* A little something for the Mama's:
- I typically read Copy Cat Chic for the amazing save-on-decor advice, but when Reichel, Mom of 2 shared this post about her favorite maternity/breast feeding friendly clothes, I took note.  boob (yup that's really the name) looks chic and flattering and the price point is somewhere perfectly between very reasonable (Old Navy Maternity) and absurd (Hatch Collection)
* And even some great reads for Dad:
- On making the most of your paternity leave
- Advice for new Dad's from my favorite Dad blogger (yes I have a favorite Dad blogger:)

* Some good reading:
- An interesting theory on why babies cry at night
- Why isn't the baby industry working harder to revolutionize the breast pump!?
- A very interesting (but LONG) article about "The Overprotected Kid"
- Just in time for summer road trips, a book of kid friendly adventures in the Hudson Valley.

Lastly, THIS little girl's reaction to finding out her mother is pregnant literally brought tears to my eyes.

For previous "For the Kiddos" posts, click HERE.