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Hi.

Welcome, friends! This here slice of the Internet revolves around lattes, bookshelves, Pinterest, Emily Henderson, white wine spritzers, China, brass anything, passports and my sweet family. Grammar and important worldly events? Not so much. Consider yourself warned.

The Friday Five

The Friday Five

Hey there, good people. Guess what?

It’s Friday. I am pretty convinced that there is nothing better than a Friday; so full of hope and promise and fun.

So let’s add to that fun by celebrating this week’s (err… actually last week’s) Friday Five.  If you are new here and wanna know more about my inspiration for posting The Friday Five, read up on that here. But in a nutshell: Every other Friday, I shine a spotlight on things or people or ideas or that I am currently loving.

So, without further adieu…

The Friday Five

The Friday Five

1. Spring Break

Can we discuss how amazing it is to have a whole week off of work? Do we even need to have a discussion? Surely not. It is just a scientific fact. You get to have actual (non-work related) conversations with your husband, you get to exercise (walking counts as exercise, right?), and you even get to watch 2 whole episodes of Season Two of Fargo. I also have it on good authority that being on Spring Break actually makes you a better human being. All the sudden you start caring about water conservation, melting glaciers and cage-free eggs.

How are these things related to Spring Break you ask? Because when you are on Spring Break you actually have time to think about things outside of your job and kids. Take, for example, yesterday: the day I took a whole 7 minutes to think about what I was going to wear.

Heavenly. Pure bliss.

This year we decided to stay put for our Spring Break. We did this for 3 reasons: 1. Beijing is super pretty this time of year 2. We needed to save some money and 3. After a very full-on winter, we needed to REALLY relax. And, news flash: traveling with kids is not always very relaxing. You can read more about that here and here.

I will write a whole post about our Spring Break adventures soon, but suffice it to say that is has been just what the doctor ordered; Lots of family time, lots of blues skies, and many fun-filled China adventures.

Spring Break Collage 2

Spring Break Collage 2

For the first time in months, I actually feel relaxed.

So, thank you Spring Break! Like a good friend and/or a pint of Chubby Hubby ice cream, you are always there when I need you and I am truly sorry to see you go!

2. Emily McDowell Studio

Are you familiar with this genius lady? She has gained notoriety recently for her empathy cards that actually tell it like it is. No bullshit. No rainbows. But big. big love. Like this one:

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Screen Shot 2016-04-07 at 4.34.06 PM

Or this one:

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Screen Shot 2016-04-08 at 7.58.49 AM

I just love them! Hallmark…eat your heart out! What I didn’t realize, though, is that she sells a lot of other stuff too – not just cards – that I want to cuddle and call mine. I especially like this tote bag:

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Screen Shot 2016-04-07 at 7.09.36 PM

Am I the only one who is physically incapable of resisting a good canvas tote bag? I am truly not tempted by designer handbags, but put me face-to-face with a solid canvas tote with a witty saying and I just want them ALLLLLLLL!

I’m super classy like that.

3. hellolulu bags

I have to give credit where credit is due, Brado discovered this line of cool bags when he was traveling in Hong Kong last year. Like the fantastic husband that he is, he has since bought me two things from here: an electronics accessory bag and a camera bag. I love both of them so much! They have been my constant traveling companions and, in the midst of kids chaos, they make me feel a little bit grown up and organized.  A bag that can offer both functionality and casual beauty is a winner in my book. Check them out! They ship internationally!

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Screen Shot 2016-04-08 at 7.08.51 AM

IMG_1181

IMG_1181

4. Pinch of Yum

Pinch of Yum is a cooking blog created by the very talented and funny (and Minneapolis-based) Lindsay. It is no secret that I do not cook. I am not proud of this fact, but I actually sorta loathe cooking. Which should make my endorsement of Pinch of Yum that much more meaningful. Think about it: with no intention of ever actually making of the recipes, I still read her blog. Why? Mostly because I think Lindsay is pretty great! She is humble, funny, adorable and just awesome. It feels weird to say that about someone you have never even met. But I do think it is true! Need further proof? Read this post about her raising over 40,000 USD for an orphanage in the Philippines. Amazing!

Also, her pumpkin bread recipe is to die for (Brado has made that one! It is sinfully good!). So if you DO cook and you like to support awesome people, who do awesome things…bookmark her blog and by all means invite me over for dinner once you have mastered her Spaghetti Squash Lasagna Boats.

5. This Article: How to Find Your Hidden Creative Genius

I have been doing a lot of thinking lately about purpose, talent, creativity and risk. The truth is that I am craving an occupational change (read more about that here) but I am also very (VERY! VERY!!) worried that I do not have the skills required to, responsibly, make the leap to something else. With all that in mind, I keep this article on speed dial. I reread it when I am deep in my moments of self-doubt. And while it doesn’t make all the doubt go away, it does seem to help put things into perspective. I like the part about allowing yourself permission to create junk. That I think I can do!

6. This Hilarious Video

I know, I already posted 5 things, but I am throwing in a bonus item because I love you. My friend showed me this video the other day and it had me rolling. Did you know that there is no such thing as Daylight Saving in China? There aren’t even different time zones here. True fact. So in a country as geographically big as the USA…4 o’clock is 4 o’clock is 4 o’clock; always and for everyone. Interesting, huh?

Okay friends, now that we have talked about all the things I am currently loving, can we just talk for a minute about one thing I am hating?

This font.

Yup, I think I might hate the font that this post is written in.

Maybe I am just getting old, but I can barely read it. Does it bother you all too? I am going to change it soon (once I figure out exactly how to) but I just wanted to first get your feedback since you are…well…the ones that actually read this.

So, bring on the feedback! Good, bad, or anything in between…I welcome your thoughts!

Now go get yourself into that kitchen and start whipping up some Spaghetti Squash Lasagna Boats. I’m starving!

Outsmarting my Ego

Outsmarting my Ego

Same-Same, But Different: Transportation

Same-Same, But Different: Transportation