Monday Memos // 60

Happy New Year! 2—0—1—8!

A Monday, a full moon, a fresh start... everything feels good and right.

Listening:

"Audrey (Spending All My Time With You)" by The Shacks. 

"After Hours" by The Velvet Underground.

"Wild Heart" by Stevie Nicks

Reading:

Mistakes You’re Going to Keep Making Forever. 

The Anti-Resolution Revolution: 5 Vows You Can Keep.

9 Ways to Be a Better Person in 2018. Accept the things you cannot control. We reported on the wedding of 98-year-old Gertrude Mokotoff and 94-year-old Alvin Mann, who, like so many couples before them, met at the gym. The groom, who also earned a bachelor’s degree in history last year, shared this advice on living a long life: “Of course, one part of it is medical science, but the bigger part is that we live worry-free lives; we do not let anything we cannot control bother us in the least.”

Of All the Blogs in the World, He Walks Into Mine. I'm such a fan of this couple through and through.

I'm into wishes. (image by Julia Rothman via nytimes)

I'm into wishes. (image by Julia Rothman via nytimes)

Craving:

After spending most of December eating all the treats—favorite's including mom's oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, magic cookie bars, peanut butter blossoms, and Christmas carrot cake; an outstanding chocolate macaron from Ladurée; a homemade birthday peach pie... the list goes on—I'm ready for our lucky New Year's Day dinner (and hopefully leftovers): Hoppin' John. We're mixing it up this year with Black-Eyed Pea Chile Verde.

I love green food. (image by Gentl & Hyers via bonappetit)

I love green food. (image by Gentl & Hyers via bonappetit)

For those uninitiated: "Hoppin' John, also known as Carolina Peas and Rice is a peas and rice dish served in the Southern United States. Eating Hoppin' John on New Year's Day is thought to bring a prosperous year filled with luck." The peas = pennies or coins. Leafy green vegetables = more wealth. Cornbread = even more wealth, the color of gold.

If you're looking to eat your way to a better year: 10 Foods That Will Bring You Good Luck in the New Year.

I support the idea of cake being good luck. (image by Shay Harrington via bonappetit)

I support the idea of cake being good luck. (image by Shay Harrington via bonappetit)

Wearing:

The theme lately is warm feet. Birthday and Christmas brought me new boots (amazing black hiker boots, beautiful black Chelsea boots, and perfect for sloshy weather brown snow boots) and new socks (a running pair, a medium height/thickness pair, and a heavy duty pair—all Smartwool). Stepping into a new year right! 

IMG_5237.JPG

Watching:

Want to see: "Star Wars: The Last Jedi." "The Shape of Water." The new Netflix Chappelle specials: "Equanimity & The Bird Revelation."

Saw and loved: "Ladybird." Yes, finally, perfection.

Enjoying on a regular basis: "The Great British Bake Off." I'm one episode away from seeing every episode that exists. Highly recommend season 4 on Netflix. "The Big Family Cooking Showdown." My parents and I have been watching an episode a night and drooling. I want to eat all the things.

Treasuring:

Reflections. I'm not worried about great, big, overwhelming looks back on 2017, but I am holding onto the best of times in my memory. I traveled more than usual (Maryland, New York, California, Washington, D.C.). I got out of my comfort zone constantly (making huge changes, moving, moving, moving, trying, exploring). I made new friends (several incredible people came into my life in new, exciting, challenging, loving, heartwarming, and creative ways). I spent more time with family. I wrote more. I got incredible job opportunities. I felt great amounts of love and fell in love and cried about love and created things from love (direct, indirect, abstract, solid, complicated, superb). I found many things that gave me a spark, and to realize how long the list is, even though so much of it felt incredibly difficult, I'm taking that as a win.

Freshness. I am looking forward to this new year—the idea of novelty, crispness, and possibility buzzing around. Cheers to more of the best.

Great words, as usual. (via @adamjk)

Great words, as usual. (via @adamjk)

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 // 52

This week is brought to you by overwhelming loneliness, too much sugar, really nice weather, and general life confusion.

Listening:

"Diamonds" by Kevin Krauter.

"Dancing In the Dark" by Bruce Springsteen. Prepare yourself for Bruce's outfit and dance moves, wow!

"Stoner Hill" by Brian Blade + The Fellowship Band. Make sure to listen to Brian speak at the end, his happiness—"there's not thoughts of other things in these times..."

"Dirty John" a podcast from the LA Times. I've been blowing through podcasts as I walk for hours through Brooklyn. I just started this one—A true story about seduction, deception, forgiveness, denial, and ultimately, survival. Reported and hosted by Christopher Goffard.—I'm about halfway done and it is disturbing and fascinating. If you like S-Town or Serial, this is similar.

Reading:

"Jitterbug Perfume" by Tom Robbins.

I went in search for "Still Life with Woodpecker," but this was the Tom Robbins selection in two different book stores, so I took it as a sign and bought a nice worn copy. Widely considered a cult classic and one of the "Best books of the 20th century," I'm excited to dig in. Robbins knows his way around wild ideas and words. 

Trivia: His dog's name is Blini Tomato Titanium and his sons have the names Rip, Kirk, and Fleetwood. I'm calling him when I get another pet or have a baby.

Some good 1984 graphic design.

Some good 1984 graphic design.

Craving:

I can't stop going to Cinnamon Girl. I've tried the monster cookie, breakfast cookie, apple bran muffin, double chocolate chunk cookie, and Brooklyn blackout cake. I should start avoiding that side of the street when I walk home.

I've also become a big fan of Silver Rice, a simple and delicious Japanese eatery. I've had their special rice cup a couple of times (flaxseed rice, pumpkin, kale, salmon, cucumbers, avocado, spicy mayo) and tried a couple different soups (a kabocha squash and a miso broccoli rabe and quinoa).

All the rice and soup and hearty desserts have been soothing on my stomach through a short bout of food poisoning and a constant bombardment of anxiety. 

Wearing:

Pants! It's been so long since I've reached for pants on a daily basis. I keep going back to the same pair of blue jeans and black slacks with a tiny quotation mark print. Back and forth and a rotation of black tee-shirts.

I've also been wearing socks on a daily basis (Florida summer made me really neglect my sock drawer). Stripes, black, and artichoke print have been the rotation.

Watching:

"Maggie's Plan."

This movie was just what I needed last Friday night. Maggie (played by Greta Gerwig) reminded me of myself, for better or worse. Some New York shenanigans and life confusion and hilarity. The cast too—Ethan Hawke, Bill Hader, Maya Rudolph, Julianne Moore... a wonderful story of comedy, chaos, and love. 

Maggie Harden, a director of business for the art and design students at a university, decides she wants to have a child and enlists a former college acquaintance, Guy Childers, a former maths student to donate his sperm. Guy is a "pickle entrepreneur."

Travis Fimmel and Greta Gerwig and the pickles. (photo by Jon Pack)

Travis Fimmel and Greta Gerwig and the pickles. (photo by Jon Pack)

Treasuring:

The telephone and faraway friends. 

This week I watched "This Is Us" while on the phone with a friend. We synced up the episode and pressed play at the exact same moment. It was wonderful to keep up a weekly tradition—to awww and laugh and cry together, even hundreds of miles apart.

Talking to my mom on a particularly rough day and then on a much better day was great. I loved hearing my dad's uproarious laughter in the background. Plus, I heard my boy Oliver meowing and I was tempted to FaceTime with him.

There have been moments this last week when my feet ache from the miles of walking, but the air felt so good, and I'm teetering between being okay or not—ring ring!—a voice of familiarity and comfort! Thank you! I get to step out of my head and talk about life and feel connected to great things. 

Now if only I could find a place like Carrie's and have her writing gig and pick the carpenter. (image via HBO)

Now if only I could find a place like Carrie's and have her writing gig and pick the carpenter. (image via HBO)

Monday Memos // 24

Listening:

"Love Forever" by The Babe Rainbow.

Another case of a modern band looking and sounding old. Still, the song is catchy and feels like the perfect day before Valentine's Day pick. 

Reading:

"One Part Plant" by Jessica Murnane. 

I know I mentioned this just a couple of weeks ago, but my advanced copy came in the mail today and it is superb! 

First off, the foreward by Lena Dunham is wonderful. Second, I want to make everything. Third, it makes plant-based meals easy and approachable. I'm more likely to make things again and again if the recipe doesn't confuse me or require extensive grocery lists. 

Plus, the glimpses of Jessica and her wardrobe and family are beautiful. I want what she is eating and wearing. 

It comes out Feb. 21! (via  amazon )

It comes out Feb. 21! (via amazon)

Craving:

Dates!

Particularly Medjools or Deglet Noors. Plain, stuffed with almond butter, thrown in a smoothie, covered in chopped nuts... I am liking any and all varieties. 

Bucket list: get a date shake in Palm Springs. 

I could make my own, but still, I really want to go to Palm Springs. (image by Alex Lau via  bonappetit )

I could make my own, but still, I really want to go to Palm Springs. (image by Alex Lau via bonappetit)

Wearing:

A faux fur bomber. 

I had a couple holiday returns and exchanges, so that left me with some gift funds to use for something new. I had been eyeing this faux fur bomber after seeing it posted on Studio DIY, and when it went on sale, I decided this would be my belated present. 

The color is amazing. I only wish it would actually get cold again here in Florida. 

Dusty pink: the color alone is worth it. (via  asos )

Dusty pink: the color alone is worth it. (via asos)

Watching:

"Girls."

Last night, the first episode of the final season aired. It was a really good one. Without spoiling anything, my favorite parts were: Riz Ahmed, the "Modern Love" column and Montauk ocean feelings. 

I've been watching this show since the beginning and have always appreciated Lena Dunham. I feel like as a 20-something female in flux (life and confusion and emotions and dreams), I can always relate on some level. 

I'm excited for this last season and a bit sad for the end. 

These scenes really made me feel nostalgic for vineyard summers. (image via HBO)

These scenes really made me feel nostalgic for vineyard summers. (image via HBO)

Wanting:

Glittery, shimmery, sparkly socks. 

Perfect for this in-between weather, I could use a selection of sparkling ankle socks. 

Shimmer Dot Socks (via  anthropologie )

Shimmer Dot Socks (via anthropologie)

shimmer colorblock ankle socks (via  madewell )

shimmer colorblock ankle socks (via madewell)

Hansel From Basel Shimmer Socks (via  brit.co )

Hansel From Basel Shimmer Socks (via brit.co)