Stranger Things – From the opening credits, this show had me hooked with its total throwback Stephen King vibe. Everything about it – the music, the graphics, the font, the styling, the wardrobes – took me back to the 1980’s, to just about the same time in my life that I started devouring Mr King paperbacks from our local small town bookstore. The story was interesting and the acting – even Winona Ryder – was strong. (I haven’t bothered with Winona Ryder since she and Keanu Reeves massacred Dracula, but in this, I really believed her as a strung-out crazy lady!)
Cold brew tea -I went through a strong Teavana phase a few years ago and have since ditched their perfumey blends in favor of solid, workmanlike Lipton or Luzianne cold brew green & black tea bags. The cold brew green tea is a bit hard to find so I ordered a box on Amazon and I’m loving it with one of my other likeable things:
Honey crystals – purchased on sale at the Ann Arbor Busch’s and perfect for sweetening tea. No mess, not too sweet, all natural honey – yum.
Canned wine spritzers – YES I know how this sounds – like I should be wearing a banana clip and sticky pink lip gloss whilst watching Knots Landing. But I read about them on another blog and picked up a few cans on sale on the grocery store. Turns out they are a perfect summertime drink – inexpensive, cold, fizzy, refreshing, not too strong and the perfect serving size so I don’t have to keep half-opened bottles in my fridge. I guess my tastes are becoming less refined with age.
Coupons – I love that my Kroger store sends me personalized coupons for only things that I like and buy regularly. Whenever I get a new pack of coupons, I buy a few extra things to stock the basement shelves that I recently re-organized. I like having extras of my favorite things and knowing I have a little stockpile and I like feeling as though I am saving money in buying things I would be buying anyway. Win-win.
A Planet Wise wet / dry sack for my gym bag – I’m proud to say that I’ve reached the point in my fitness life in which I work out several times a week and I get pretty gross and my gym bag can become a horrid swamp of fetid gear in the drop of a hat. One side of this bag keeps my running shoes zipped up and separated from the rest of my gear; the other side has a water-resistant liner that keeps my gross sweaty gym clothes from stinking up my bag. When it gets yucky, I can just throw it in the washing machine. Organizational (and hygienic) game changer for $20.
Meditation – Getting back to meditation in the mornings with my coffee – Insight Timer is the app I use and it has a great playlist of all types of guided meditations, and a timer if you want to go DIY. And it tracks my stats, which is motivating for a twenty first century meditator. Since I started meditating in March 2015, I’ve meditated 48% of the days – close to 250 days. My fave is this meditation from Andy Hobson.
My new-to-me Subaru Outback – I’d planned on keeping Toothless, my 2010 Toyota Camry, for another year, since even at 150k miles, he was running strong and I had no intention of changing. Then life happened and an opportunity arose for me to buy this perfect 2014 Outback. I was really only looking for the V6 engine in a used but not-too-old vehicle, but when this one came up on Cars.com during a somewhat idle search, I had to jump. It was already marked down, low miles, it was the color I wanted (metallic grey), and the package happily included a lot of bells and whistles along with the strong engine. I have been a sedan girl for the last 20 or so years so being able to sit up a bit in a bigger crossover has been fun. I also love being able to toss my bike in the back (AND still have room for passengers and luggage). Jax is urging me to consider getting a hitch for future road trips with our kiddos and I’m sure at some point I will go for it. Finn (Miss L did the naming honors) has been a great addition to my daily life.
My job – I suppose I’m feeling a little celebratory and splurgetastic because I recently got a promotion that (I felt) was somewhat overdue. I’ve had a mixed bag of bosses but this one has been in the trenches with us during a long, strange year and she’s done a lot to show her appreciation for her team’s hard work. I’ve said it before and I will say it again – I was blessed to find Widget Central at a time in my life where I was essentially rudderless, and when anything could have happened. It’s not a romantic, glamorous job, but it has given me countless opportunities on two continents and I have met some of the finest people there. This was proven to me again when my promotion announcement came out, and I received no fewer than fifty emails from my colleagues congratulating me and wishing me well. One friend sent me an old picture of us together; another bought my lunch in the cafeteria; another left a funny gift at my desk. By the end of the day, I was embarrassed and almost teary-eyed over the reminder that my colleagues are like my second family.