Monday Memos // 57

Listening:

Terrible, Thanks for Asking. Hosted by author and notable widow (her words) Nora McInerny, this is a funny/sad/uncomfortable podcast about talking honestly about our pain, our awkwardness, and our humanness, which is not an actual word. A favorite episode: Episode #2: I’ve Made a Huge Mistake

Natch Beaut podcast. Comedian and self-proclaimed "Beauty Passionista" Jackie Johnson attempts to take the seriousness, mysteries, and intimidation out of makeup and skincare as she gabs with fellow artists about what beauty and self-care means to them. A favorite episode: Episode 16: Beauty Fails with Georgia Hardstark.

How to Be Amazing with Michael Ian Black. An in-depth interview show, hosted by comedian, author and actor Michael Ian Black.  Black sits down with some of today’s most provocative writers, entertainers, artists, innovative thinkers and politicians for humorous, thought-provoking conversations that dive into the creative process and the intricate minds of some of the most influential voices of our time. A favorite episode: Episode 38: Tim Gunn.

Reading:

One of the few reasons I am already looking forward to summer: Lauren Groff's new book "Florida." When Lauren signed my copy of "Fates and Furies" she wrote: "The next one's for you." I believe it!

The stories in this collection span characters, towns, decades, even centuries, but Florida -- its landscape, climate, history, and state of mind -- becomes its gravitational center: an energy, a mood, as much as a place of residence. Groff transports the reader, then jolts us alert with a crackle of wit, a wave of sadness, a flash of cruelty, as she writes about loneliness, rage, family, and the passage of time. With shocking accuracy and effect, she pinpoints the moments and decisions and connections behind human pleasure and pain, hope and despair, love and fury -- the moments that make us alive. Startling, precise, and affecting, Florida is a magnificent achievement.

Read "Fates and Furies" now if you haven't already.

Read "Fates and Furies" now if you haven't already.

Craving:

I have eaten three different household versions of Thanksgiving feasts. Three different versions of pumpkin pie. (Plus an assortment of treats including cherry pie and chocolate cream pie and pumpkin roll and crescent roll cheesecake squares and berry cobbler... Hello sugar rush!)

I always see these inventive ways of using leftovers and they have me keeping the stuffing and turkey in mind. Like: turkey and mushroom dumpling soup, leftover sweet potato casserole grilled cheese, leftover cranberry sauce greek yogurt coffee cake, breakfast hash with mashed potato pancakes, and stuffing waffles.

Wearing:

  • Flannel (tis the season).
  • Wool socks (my pair of Smartwool socks have stood the test of time).
  • Boots (thanks to my mom for passing on an incredibly comfortable pair of Kork-Ease boots to me).

Watching:

Finally saw "The Big Sick" and enjoyed it. Heavy on the comedy, not overly romantic, plus a much-needed dose of Holly Hunter.

I have fallen fast for "Search Party." A single-camera dark comedy about four self-absorbed twenty-somethings who become entangled in an ominous mystery when a former college acquaintance suddenly disappears. All the characters and cameos are brilliant. If you find yourself adoring Elliott, go check out all of John Early's other stuff. 

I need to start watching "At Home with Amy Sedaris." Her and her brother are some of my heroes.

Looks like Florida. (image by KC Bailey)

Looks like Florida. (image by KC Bailey)

Treasuring:

Driving. I don't necessarily love driving, but sometimes it's therapeutic to just set out on the road and drive for several hours. This past week I make a new trek on the Pennsylvania turnpike (plus a tiny bit of Ohio's). The rolling hills and snow-covered patches were beautiful. I listened to so many wonderful podcasts, too.

Celebrating. Birthdays, holidays, togetherness. Giving gifts, giving thanks, giving hugs.

(hand drawn type by  maddy nye  for designlovefest)

(hand drawn type by maddy nye for designlovefest)

Monday Memos // 51

Listening:

"Forgiven/Forgotten" by Angel Olsen. "If there's one thing I fear / It's knowing you're around / So close but not here / So close / Oh, but not with me here / So close / But not with me here"

"New York" by St. Vincent. This video is good.

"Milestones" by Buddy Rich. I love this song in all forms and iterations. Birdland in it's entirety is really groovy too.

 By  Farley Katz .

As a bonus: For the Rock Star, Love Has Finally Landed. I'll admit, I'm a sucker for reading the Weddings section of the New York Times. It's like my inner romantic is constantly trying to melt the nonchalant/fear of rejection/un-celebratory parts of me. Anyways, in a long and winding path, I found my way to this wedding from a year ago (I went to get lunch at Eleven36 and was looking though their Instagram page and saw this photo and went to the source and it had to do with this sweet and magical love story with a record store and a musician and long distance and triumph).

“Matthew floats just above the earth,” said their officiant, Ms. de Wilde. “I think that he needs someone like Emily to help bring him down to earth and make the ground less punishing.”

The couple recited personalized vows before approximately 130 friends and family. “You already think the world’s in color, and then it’s really in color,” the groom said of his bride. “You already think you’re a loving person, and then you feel like your heart doubles in size.”   (image by Lauren Lancaster for The New York Times

The couple recited personalized vows before approximately 130 friends and family. “You already think the world’s in color, and then it’s really in color,” the groom said of his bride. “You already think you’re a loving person, and then you feel like your heart doubles in size.”  (image by Lauren Lancaster for The New York Times

Craving:

There are rare times in life when I do not want chocolate cake. So as a celebratory treat for my successful move to New York on Saturday, I got myself a slice of Brooklyn blackout cake from Cinnamon Girl. It was light and rich, cakey and puddingy, I could hardly savor it—I completely devoured it. 

"Blackout cake, sometimes called Brooklyn Blackout cake, is an American chocolate cake filled with chocolate pudding and chocolate cake crumbs, and frosted with chocolate icing. It was invented during World War II by a Brooklyn-based bakery chain named Ebinger's, in recognition of the mandatory blackouts to protect the Brooklyn Navy Yard."

I think I could make it my quest to find all the best blackout cakes in the city.

On my list is Ovenly's version—a favorite for the Village Voice (image via Adam Robb for the villiagevoice)

On my list is Ovenly's version—a favorite for the Village Voice (image via Adam Robb for the villiagevoice)

Wearing:

It's like I have a uniform. Stripes. Denim. Slip-on, solid-colored shoes. 

I'm ready for fall gear, though the heat seems to have followed me up north thus far. Lusting for layers. Scarves. Jackets. Boots. 

Ready for primping. (image by leah goren)

Ready for primping. (image by leah goren)

Watching:

Keeping up with: "This Is Us" (crying and bonding); "Project Runway" (so much drama and twists this season!); "The Deuce" (entertained but not entirely sold).

Recently viewed: "The Meyerowitz Stories" (typical Baumbach—lots of laughing and cringing)

Want to see: "Blade Runner 2049" (positive recommendations and Gosling); "Mindhunter" (I like Jonathan Groff and David Fincher).

Treasuring:

My cat. Considering the variety of sensitivities he has (loud noises terrify him, knocks on the door terrify him, plastic bags terrify him, the presence of most large men terrify him), I was hoping for an okay experience driving 12-13 hours straight with his company. Turns out he's a phenomenal travel partner. He was patient and quiet and easy—he never made a single terrible noise! We chatted, I sang to him, I cried to him, I felt so grateful for his companionship. 

His first days versus these days. 

His first days versus these days. 

A majority of my life was spent wishing I lived elsewhere. I made it out of my hometown for a few years, then found myself back—a stay that was longer than anticipated. Yet, this last stint was one of the best. I made some of the most amazing relationships. I felt joy and excitement and satisfaction. I discovered so many things about the place and myself. What a relief (and some serious heartache) to leave on such terms. 

My feet in Florida.