nourishing & unapologetic
It's Friday! It's Friday! And you know what that means? My current favorite things, of course! Here's the totally biased rundown.
1. Renewing an old hobby: reading!
When I was younger, I lived for Saturday mornings. This was when my mom would take me to the public library to exchange the books I'd previously checked out and load up on new ones. I don't kid when I say load up. Man, I was a reading machine! But as time has passed, I have let this hobby slip away somewhat. I still love the pastime but I let others things get in the way. On our recent vacation, I had the time to actually read. I read three books and made it into a 4th only reading on the beach and on our return flight. I think I am going to make it a point to actually read for pleasure more.
Nick will tell you my favorite "pleasure-reading" genre is ridiculous. And, I'll admit, it is, but I just love culinary murder mysteries. (Yes, there is such a thing!) It combines my two favorite things: food and mysteries. What more could I want? So on this fine Friday, I want to introduce you to my two favorite authors in this genre:
2. DIY Car Music Videos
Recently, I've been a bit (embarrassingly) obsessed with a few "lip-syncing" videos that have been in my Instagram and Facebook feeds. They are just a few seconds/minutes of joy. Both videos I share below feature couples on a road trip using a a GoPro to film their shenanigans. This gadget is definitely on Nick and I's list of wants. Talk about so fun!
I've watched over and over just seem to be filled with happiness. Check them out, I promise you won't be able to help but smile.
3. Produce from the Garden
Remember the post about Nick's front yard garden...well, it's done pretty well. We've had more tomatoes than we can count and almost as many jalapenos and chilies. Needless to say, #BornGarden2014 is a win. It's nice not buying tomatoes for an inflated price at the story and super nice to just have hot peppers when you need them. (We eat a bunch of both of these items on a regular basis.) Check out the fruits of his labor. (PS some garden related recipes will appear on the blog soon!)
This near downtown Wichita Mexican restaurant is SOOOOOO good. Seriously, we've been at a loss for good Mexican food. Loss, no longer--this is the place! Nick and I went there this week with a couple near and dear to us. The food was incredible (plus our company was outstanding!). I was so wrapped up in chatting and eating that I complete forgot to take any pictures. Hubby recommends the fish tacos (his go-to test at a Mexican restaurant) and I had the gorditas and some elote. We left well-served and stuffed. Check out, Molino's if you're looking for an easy, casual, authentic joint.
5. That I actually own something similar to something I pinned to my fashion board...
It's not a secret that I love Pinterest. My fashion board was the second or third board I created. I've always adored clothes. I wouldn't say I am particularly fashion-forward, but I am aware. I like a good trend, but I like it better when I can make my own way with my wardrobe. I'm a little bit hippie, a dash of preppy, and skoosh old-lady.
So this fashion board, titled with a nod to the glamorous SJP (Sarah Jessica Parker), has about a bazillion items of clothing that I really like but likely won't ever own. But, this morning I realized, I really do own something similar to a pin. It's a miracle! Okay maybe not a miracle, but close. Check it:
6. Quotes on Pinterest
I've always been a quote junky. I've been known to clip words out of magazines, take pictures of random signs, or jot words of wisdom down. The "Quotes" category on Pinterest is a must review for me. I love finding excellent phrases, inspiration, and advice there. Some are generic while others i come across totally hit home. This quote in particular gives me a perspective check.
I confessed in my introduction that I am a worry-wort. It seems to be as natural as breathing to me. (I grew up with asthma and still have a just-in-case inhaler, so maybe that's a bad analogy...) Anyhoo, I do make mountains out of molehills (sometimes, er often, unnecessarily). It's a constant battle between being considerate and prepared AND flexible and spontaneous. Since I met carefree, predictably happy-go-lucky Nick, he's challenged me to relax and not plan or anticipate so much. Nearly three years in, I'm still a novice non-worrier. But, to my credit, I am working on it. Little by little, I'm learning to let go. So this quote is one of my mantras. (Can you have more than mantra?...)
If you are suffering from worrying, may this forcefully direct, simple statement provide you the motivation, strength, and/or inspiration to be carry forward without anxiety. Warrior is awesome self-proclamation.
Thanks for letting me share some of my favorites! Enjoy some of yours today too.
Cheers to Friday and a new month. (Someone explain how it's August already!?).
Until next time.
6/28/2014 6 Comments
Unsurprising Confession: I really love cookies. The only other sweet I'd forego a cookie for is a brownie. But as of late, the Born household has been on a cookie kick.
Now, I must request a virtual ROUND OF APPLAUSE for Sally over at Sally's Baking Addiction for this kick butt recipe! It is undeniably one of the best cookie recipes I've ever made. (And this sweet tooth has made a lot of cookies over the last 28 years...)
What makes these cookies both addicting and awesome is their classic simplicity. My vegetable preferring husband is a sucker for soft cookies. He liked these Soft-Baked Monster Cookies so much requested I make these cookies two nights in a row.
These are perfect for any bake sale, picnic, family get together, or just an afternoon snack.
What these cookies aren't perfect for is bikini/swimsuit season. Seriously, you need willpower of a Saint to refuse one (er, three). Summer is in full swing and we're headed to Florida in a few weeks. This is when I should be eating greens, protein, and nothing enjoyable. But if you've been reading this blog, you know that I tend to prefer things that aren't going to keep me slim and trim. But as I grumble about what I look like (and maybe reach for another cookie at the same time) , I have to remind myself that I prefer to eat what I love and run a little more than regiment my diet. (For those who tell me that's not the way to think, I know this but I'm not looking to be a super model (I mean I'm 5'1.5" for goodness sakes!), just healthy.) I'm never going to be lean or cut because it's not something I value over being in the kitchen generating a form of love and a few calories.
But in the spirit of swimsuit season, let's quickly reflect on this wardrobe component that most women despise. And, then I'll share a few I'm coveting and/or considering. Then I promise I'll give you the goods on the cookies.
You might have seen this video on Facebook, but I wanted to share it here. I'm not sure what to think of Jessica Rey's call for modesty as means of empowerment. I am conflicted. On one hand, I think she's brilliant. I totally get not wanting to be seen as an "object". It repulses me to think that an article of clothing can slingshot our evolutionary advanced mind back to the more archaic times. But..
Here's my argument: a power suit is not about the amount of fabric and fit, but rather the mental and emotional feelings one has when wearing it. Power suit= self-confidence. To me, wearing any swimsuit at all and feeling like a rockstar in it is empowering. If that's a itsy bitsy bikini for some or a full-on one piece with a skirt, so be it. I will throw in the caveat that there are some swimsuits that are just not suited for all body types and generally you know when that's the case. And complete honesty, I am totally guilty of judging someone else for wearing something I don't think is flattering on them but that's my problem and my misstep. Seriously, who am I to judge what someone else feels best in?
All that said, here are a few swimsuits, in a variety of styles, I think are adorable for summer 2014:
I know after trying on swimsuits (virtually or in a store), I want a reward. Here's yours.
Soft-Baked Monster Cookies
Recipe source: Sally's Baking Addiction
1/2 cup (1 stick) salted butter, softened to room temperature
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (I prefer Mexican vanilla)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 and 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup quick oats*
3/4 cup your favorite M&Ms
1/2 cup milk chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate chips
*I never have quick oats on hand, so I just put a little over a 1/2 cup of old fashioned oats in the food processor, pulsed for a few seconds, and viola!
Thanks for letting me ramble on today. I sincerely hope if you're on the hunt for a swimsuit this summer that you find one that makes you feel 100% beautiful and/or comfortable. If you do, celebrate with these cookies. If not, commiserate with these cookies. Either way this recipe is a homerun! Talk to you soon.
PS For the mommas out there debating whether to pass on the pool or splash with your kiddos, check out this article. It's a good read.