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NaBloPoMo Day 30: Peace ahhhht

I was just about to go to bed, because it is now 10 pm and I have an 8am flight to catch. I then remembered that it is the LAST DAY of NaBloPoMo and I have yet to post anything today.

SO HERE IT IS.

POST

POST

POST

POST

snoopy running

That’s how it is done. NaBloPoMo complete.

Now it’s time for some beauty rest.

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NaBloPoMo Day 19: New Beauty Toys @Clairsonic

I know  am well behind on the Clairsonic bandwagon.  I was skeptical about whether it was worth the cost, or if it was even all that necessary since people have been washing their faces without one since the beginning of time, and I was worried it was going to be messy and drip water everywhere.  My mom got me the Mia 1 for my birthday, and I have found that it really is quite nice.

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I was happy to find that it was not messy at all. The brush builds up a nice lather, but it does not drip water everywhere. I felt like the brush’s pulsations got my face squeaky clean.  The pulsations were a nice gentle massage for my face, which was a nice luxury at the end of the day.  Do I think a Clairsonic is an absolute necessity for clean skin? No. But I do think it is delightfully luxurious and a nice addition to my beauty routine before bed.

I only learned how to properly blow dry my hair about 2 years ago (before, I used to rough-dry it into a mess of frizzy waves, then flat iron it all out, resulting in a pathetic, limp head of hair).  I use a t3 Featherweight Luxe 2i hairdryer which I am moderately obsessed with, even going so far as to bring it with me when I travel because I do NOT want to use another dryer. Other dryers just do not measure up. I have been using the round brush that came with it, but I have a lot of hair, and my hair is very thick, so even with the fast work of the t3, it can still take a while to dry (imagine how long it would take trying to dry my hair with a standard hair dryer…)

Round Brush

I finally made the jump to a large-barrel ceramic round brush. I think it is 2 and 7/8 inches diameter.  I did my first blow out this morning, and it was a DREAM.  I can dry larger sections of my hair much more quickly, and I only have to run each section through once (I often had to run them two twice with the smaller brush).  The sections came out even smoother, but with a nice curl at the end.  I had rough-dried my hair the night before and slept with a braid in, so all that was left to do was the final dry by sections. The process took maybe 10 minutes. It was wonderful, and this brush is my new obsession.

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NaBloPoMo Day 9: Return to the Homestead

NaBloPoMo Day 9: Return to the Homestead

It’s incredible how refreshing a weekend away can be. Although our vacation was only 2 full days and 2 days spent mostly traveling, I have returned home feeling at least sane again. It’s not full on rested bliss, but I am rested enough to feel capable to dive back into real life.

When traveling, I try to hit as many “local favorites” as possible, even if totally kitschy. Before leaving Montreal today, I enjoyed a Montreal bagel (totally legit), as well as one last helping of Timbits (also legit, but in a totally different way).

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Timbits

Travel was smooth going. In the course of this weekend away, I started and finished one book (The Beach by Alex Garland, in case you are wondering) and also made significant progress in another audiobook (The Scorch Trials by James Dashner).

Baby Beez Spiderman

Returning home with presents was mandatory, of course, and the pom-pom slippers and Spiderman comic book en Francais were very well received.

I know it’s not even late enough to be grown-up bed time, but I’m beat. So g’night.

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NaBloPoMo Day 2: My 30s. The Best.

I remember the pain and awkwardness of my 20s. My teens was painful and awkward, too, but it was pre-widespread internet usage, so I was not as aware in realtime of how awkward I actually was.  When I was in my 20s, I could see everyone else being so put-together and grown up. Yet there I was, in the wobbly-baby-giraffe phase of my adulthood. It was no fun at all. I did have the benefit of several friends already in their 30s who had their acts more-or-less together (at least more together than mine) who were helpful beacons in navigating that decade of transition. Even though I claim to celebrate my 29th birthday again every year, I’m comfortably in the decade of “I certainly don’t have-it-all, but I’m satisfied with what I have.”

Inspiration for this post came to me in the shower this morning. The shower is my best thinking spot, especially when I make Mr. Beez take Baby Beez to school, leaving me to take a shower without a small person tapping on the glass door and demanding attention. 10 minutes of quiet do wonders for the brain.

Absolutely Fabulous

In my few minutes of thoughtful solitude, I thought about all the ways that my 30s have been better than my 20s:

  1. I am no longer terrified of going into the movies or a restaurant or a bar by myself. Sometimes I even go alone on purpose. And LIKE it.
  2. I can comfortably navigate a bar menu and wine list.
  3. I am OK with my tastes changing from time to time. I can acknowledge that things I used to hate have become things I now love (see: mint, Indian food, massages, popcorn balls, Bloody Mary’s), without fretting that a change in taste has destroyed my identity. Who knows, maybe someday I will even develop a taste for dark beers or sweet white wines.
  4. I’m less hung up on what other people think. I can’t claim I don’t care what other people think, I still do, but I do not allow my life to be driven by the judgment of others. Because sometimes the comfort of wearing yoga pants completely outweighs the side-eye tossed in your direction.
  5. I’ve become much better at finding the “bright side” of things, even tiny mundane things.  For example, recently I was stuck waiting in Family Court from 9am-4pm. In my 20s I’d be buzzing around furious. Now, I realize I have no control over when my case will be called, so might as well sit back, read a book on my phone, and relax. Maybe this has more to do with being better at realizing what I can control and what I cannot, but in any event, it makes life a lot easier.
  6. I have a better sense of my strengths. I am better at focusing my efforts (whether at work, volunteering, etc.) in ways that channel my strengths, and bringing in help to fill in the gaps where I am less strong.
  7. I have a better sense of my weaknesses. And I can tell which weaknesses are worthwhile to develop and overcome, and which ones I should accept and move on (I will never be a dancer or a concert pianist. And that is fine with me.)
  8. My friendships are closer and stronger than ever before. Your 20s is all about networking and casting your net as wide as possible. In your 30s, those friendships really develop into people you can count on, and who can count on you.
  9. I can finally do a reasonably good job at blowdrying my hair, applying my own nail polish and putting on liquid eyeliner. Those skills take PRACTICE. Relatedly, I can walk in heels without looking like a drunk flamingo.
  10. I can go to bed at 9pm and feel awesome about it. No more of this hitting the bar at 10pm business. That’s what happy hour is for. I like my sleep.
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NaBloPoMo Day 1: Welcome to #NaBloPoMo and a Recipe for You

NaBloPoMo Day 1: Welcome to #NaBloPoMo and a Recipe for You

It’s NOVEMBER! In addition to the 18 day countdown to my 29th (again) birthday, it’s also National Blog Post Month (or, National Novel Writing Month for People Who Do Not Have the Attention Span to Write A Novel….but that hashtag was unwieldy).

I’ve participated in NaBloPoMo a few times in the past. Some years I have made it the whole month. Other times, the rest of life has pushed blogging to the backburner, and I have lost steam. Blogging has taken a backburner a lot lately, and I’d like to turn that around.

My first post is not full of insights and witticisms because I’ve got a narsty chest cold that left me sleeping on the couch most of the day. Mind you, the husband wasn’t home all day, so this meant my 5 year old was physically climbing on me and jumping on me and I was without energy to yell at her or fight her off. So yeah. #DangKids  Also, she never stops talking ever. At all. And if she stops with words, she starts with singing or noises or smacking things around to make noises with them. Calgon please take me away. To anywhere that is silent and does not involve a 5 year old knee to my sternum.

I did manage to throw together a respectable miso stew that is hitting the spot.  Like many comfort foods, the photo is unimpressive, but it tasted good and helped me feel a little better.

Miso Stew

Ingredients:

1 onion

Some oil (I used olive oil, you can use whatever you like to fry things in)

Some garlic

Some ginger

Some rice vinegar

Block of tofu (preferably previously frozen then defrosted)

Dried Kelp or kombu

Sliced shitaake mushrooms (I used frozen)

Miso paste

Soba Noodles

  1. Slice up the onions and cook them in a soup pot with the garlic and ginger until fragrant
  2. Add in a bunch of water, as well as ginger, rice vinegar and miso. You’ll probably need more miso than you expect, unless you are good at cooking with miso and already have a feel for that kind of thing.  I say “some” for all of these, because I added them in til I got the taste I wanted.
  3. Slice the tofu into little blocks and add it, along with the kelp or kombu and shitaake mushrooms, and cook for a while. I think I brought it up to a boil and then simmered for like half an hour or so.
  4. Add in the noodles and cook for a while. I think they were done in about 10 minutes.

Serve with a side of your preferred decongestant, and hopefully you’ll be feeling better in a jiffy!