Friday Favorites

Friday, July 9, 2021

Happy Friday! I am linking up today with Andrea and others here!

I have a lot of food favorites this week! I hope that’s ok! I guess this was a four day week with Tom off on Monday? And, I have not really known what day it is.

I made mini muffins this week and I could do a separate post, but they are so good I wanted to go ahead and share.

You need: any cake mix, 1 cup of water, 1 tsp. of vanilla (you will see I added the vanilla to my measuring cup), and a Chobani non-fat plain Greek yogurt.

Mix everything up, put in mini muffin pan (I had extra batter for more than 24 so I did a second batch with 8 more) and bake for 13 ish minutes. You may need a bit longer depending on your oven. I can’t remember exactly how long I did because I had to cook for longer.

They are delish and not too bad for you! I believe they are one point on WW if you do WW.

Sometimes I just want something sweet and I picked up this pineapple gum. Yum!

I had a breakfast with a friend at a place called Con Huevos. It is kinda Mexican and kinda Cuban. I ordered an omelette with tons of veggies, a bit of Oaxaca cheese, and salsa roja.

My friend ordered chilaquiles.

Mason requested churros so I brought them home!

I also had a nice happy hour with a friend this week and just ordered a good old Michelob Ultra Light on draft. It was tasty.

For breakfast at home I often have a veggie scramble with veggies and egg. I am a total egg for breakfast person. I make a big batch of vegetables one day and use them all week.

I am reading this now and it’s cute so far.

I love a non-fiction or self-help book and got this to start. Lindsay recommended it.

I talked about cleaning recently and I’m doing really well. It always helps me to have cleaning products that I enjoy using. This smells great. I love Method products.

So, what were your favorites this week? Did I show you enough food? Ha!

Thanks for visiting me,

Amy

Nashville Getaway

Thursday, July 8, 2021

I was looking for a short trip before one of my sons dedicated the rest of his summer to his Shakespeare in the Park rehearsals and performances. We could have done a whole week to somewhere in June, but honestly I just didn’t get anything together. It’s been a big and crazy year, as you know. The kids moved home April 29th and we were busy with that adjustment and finishing up my school year. Our kids are not big beach people anymore. They could’ve handled a couple of days on the beach, but need more options I think. I also wasn’t excited about flying yet for various reasons. So, that is how I picked Nashville for our very short getaway.

It was an easy drive at just under 3 hours. Tom always drives and I always navigate. He does not enjoy being a passenger and that is fine with me. After rolling into town around 11, we stopped to see the interior of the Opryland Hotel. It was swarming with people and it looked like a convention was going on, as well.

I had made a reservation to eat at The Aquarium for lunch because Jack loves marine life. Nashville is an hour behind us so that made it nice. We kind of gained an hour.

Mason dressed for it, which I thought was sweet. It was just o.k.- the food was o.k. and the experience was just o.k. I thought it was going to be a little more interesting than it was. Oh well.

Then, we drove into downtown Nashville to go on a redneck comedy tour of the sights of Nashville. It was bad. We were trapped on a school bus that was quite hot for two hours. It wasn’t funny and I wouldn’t even say it was very informative. You guys, I normally laugh at everything. I kind of have to as a high school teacher, right? I hardly even cracked a smile. One of the tour leaders went off on personal tangents and political tangents. It was uncomfortable and our kids hated it.

They stopped halfway through at this moonshine place with a nice outdoor area. Jack and Mason walked to the hotel at that point. Oh well again. You live and you learn. Tom was a good sport but he thought it was not great, either.

Our hotel was really nice! We stayed at The Graduate. I had never heard of this chain before planning for this trip but apparently they are commonly near college campuses. It was across form Vanderbilt which is gorgeous.

It smelled so good and I shared Tuesday that they had full sized products in the shower by Malin + Goetz. I can’t wait to order the rum body wash. I doesn’t smell like rum to me but I can’t put my finger on what it does smell like.

In the photo above those are pencils embedded in the lobby coffee bar!

The rooftop bar is below.

rooftop pool:

For our dinner the first night, we walked to Hattie B’s hot chicken. We have Joella’s and Royals hot chicken here in Louisville and we love them; they are also hot chicken places.

We were all tired from the long day and the hot bus, I think! We stayed in the room after dinner.

The next morning we wanted to do the art museum for Mason, so we walked to The Gulch area and found a little coffee and breakfast spot.

We had everything croissant sandwiches. I am going to add my seasoning to the Trader Joe’s frozen croissants! So good!

We found the murals!

This was Tom’s idea to have little wings and he did the face to emphasize that he was sad to have smallers wings than me.

We made it to the art museum and had to wear masks! Luckily I had packed some for the Lyft. Those were the only two places we had to wear them.

The art museum is in the old post office and it is a really pretty building.

From there we walked to Broadway. This is where there are tons of bars and restaurants with live music. There are also some record shops.

Below is Miranda Lambert’s place called Casa Rosa. We had driven down the main drag in our bus the day before, too.

We sat down in Ole Red, Blake Shelton’s place, and had a drink. Tom doesn’t drink and the boys were appalled at all of the “day drinking”. Tom and Mason like country music and I am fine with it. Jack does not like it. But, Jack plays guitar and piano, so he appreciates musicians.

We Lyfted back to the hotel to rest after walking the whole day – from maybe 9-3. I had to take another shower because I was sweaty. I cannot stress this enough. Wear very comfortable shoes and dress for the city heat and humidity.

That night the boys wanted to order food and Tom and I walked in the rain to a different area. He wanted pizza and I didn’t care. I tried a prosecco cider – yum! We split a small pizza and I even let Tom get his preferred toppings because they wouldn’t let us get half and half. I am a vegetable pizza person. I also like just cheese. but Tom wants his meat.

We found some music in the Virgin Hotel lobby.

They were handing out free prosecco for their one year anniversary. Okay!

Then we walked around some more looking for more live music and couldn’t find any. This was a Thursday night and it was raining and we were not on Broadway, but we thought surely there would be music. Nope! I did talk to a friend who said she was really disappointed in Nashville after having been to Memphis. I don’t know. There were lots of bachelorette and 21st birthday groups and many of them were staying in our hotel but they didn’t bother us. We did not get to check out any suburbs like Franklin which I have heard is really cute.

So, the next morning we headed out. It was a quick trip but I’m glad we got away.

Some things I learned:

-Boutique hotel kinda means smaller hotel rooms – or maybe the rooms in a downtown area are always smaller? I tried to splurge a little and the common areas were great but the room was small. I also encountered this at the Omni in Louisville. I think we are Comfort Inn type people!

-We probably need to get two rooms now. We had not stayed in a hotel room as a family since the boys were 14. We have rented VRBOs where we can spread out. I figured for only two nights it would be fine and it was, but next time we probably need two rooms.

-The parking situation is rough in any big city’s downtown area. We had to rely on walking and using Lyft one time. Lyft and Uber still require masks. I did not have an account set up so we used our kids’ account once. The hotel did not include parking and it was $40 a night in their garage. We took our Suburban with racks on top and it didn’t fit in their garage so Tom had to find a different one and then didn’t want to risk losing that spot. It was a whole thing!

–Tom wants to go, go, go and the boys and I want a bit of down time to head back to the hotel between activities.

-Manage expectations when teens are involved.

–I brought an extension cord and will always do that from now on. It was so nice to have with all of the chargers one has in modern life.

Have you been to Nashville? What was your favorite activity?

Thanks for reading,

Amy

What I Wore and What I Packed

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Today is the day I link up with The Style Six here! Maybe you are starting to get tired of your summer clothes and can “copy” off of one of these ladies? Maybe you have a trip planned and my “What I Packed” portion will help you?

Let’s get started!

We had a 3 day getaway that was under 3 hours away. I wore my heaviest shoes in the car – aren’t you supposed to do that? Bad idea for a road trip for me. My pigs need to breathe! Oh well!

I wore my yellow Walmart dress for day one and I must have seen at least 4 women wearing the blue color! Lol! Our first stop was to look around the Opryland hotel. It does bother me that the line is not totally below the bust line on me but I decided to let it go. I got a few compliments on the bright yellow color.

Day two I decided to wear the cut offs and white top. I only wore these sandals in the hotel in the morning for coffee. They are super comfortable but I didn’t want to ruin them with lots of walking and I didn’t think they would be the best choice.

I put my tennies back on and I had to put the hair up. Nashville is hot and humid just like Louisville but worse! Ha!

That night I changed into the black version of the yellow dress for dinner but still paired it with the tennies because it was raining. I forgot to get a photo but here I am wearing it below to shop before the trip.

I was pretty good with packing this time. I am a total overpacker! I always worry about things I might need and different situations that may arise.

I used the Vera Bradley consignment overnight bag and it was perfect. I don’t think this would be good for a plane trip but it is great for a car trip.

I took three pairs of shoes. Shoes are normally the hardest category for me to narrow down.

I took only these pieces of jewelry. As you can see I focused on gold in both the jewelry and the shoes.

I sleep in black tanks and shorts at home and I brought this on the trip, too.

The yellow Walmart dress:

a blurry photo of the black Walmart dress:

my favorite Target Universal Thread cut offs that I won’t stop talking about along with my old Costco top:

Loft patterned knit pants and Target Universal Thread black knit top:

I wore the above for the ride home.

I brought a pair of athletic shorts and a white tee and flag kimono but didn’t end up using those. I packed very lightly and felt really good!

Yesterday I wore this to breakfast with my friend:

I Marie Kondo’ed my kimono collection and offered about 10 kimonos to her. I told her I had so many that I wasn’t ever going to wear my 11th favorite! She was thrilled. It makes me happy to let things go when I know someone will use them!

I am trying to have a “No Spend July”! Can I do it? I am not sure because there will be some mighty good sales. I think organizing my closet and seeing all that I do have and all that I haven’t worn yet will help. You know that I like to challenge myself to wear everything before a season ends! If I don’t want to wear it it has to go. It feels wasteful but I always feel so much lighter when my closet is curated. As Marie says, the item served you for a time but you need to let it go and thank it for its service.

What have you worn lately?

What is your packing style?

What is your unpacking style? I unpack right away! I can’t sit down until mail and packages are taken care of, unpacking is done, and laundry is started.

Thanks for reading,

Amy

Weekend Recap

Tuesday, July 6, 2021

Hey everyone! I took a break from my computer and did not touch it for a full week! I missed you!

How was your 4th of July? We did not do a whole lot, to be honest. We have several friends away on vacation and we had just gotten back from a little getaway. We spent the end of last week in Nashville and I will recap that soon.

I finished this and I really liked it. It was cute! It involved a travel company and a trip to the Gal├ípagos Islands and of course there was some romance! My favorite from this summer is still probably Float Plan. It had everything I want in a summer book. I did enjoy Golden Girl but I didn’t like that the main character was a ghost or a spirit. I am also not sure about a recent quote by Elin; she is retiring from the beach reads in a couple of years and wants to become a book influencer. She said that only writers are qualified to be book influencers and she criticized Oprah and Reese Witherspoon and their book clubs. She also made an Anne Frank reference in Golden Girl that she later apologized for. I am not one to “cancel” someone but it gave me pause and I think I might be done with her books. I have read them all up to this point. I am not sure if I will read the little e-book that follows up with 28 Summers because I didn’t love that book. It made me mad. Any thoughts? Again, I always want you to know you can disagree with me!

I made this red, white, and blue salad for Friday night dinner along with salmon, broccoli, and potatoes. I did romaine, blueberries, strawberries, sunflower seeds, and feta. I used Brianna’s brand dressing. Yum!

I love coming home and going through all the mail and packages (I only had a couple I promise!). Isn’t that the best? One of the things that arrived was this cereal below.

Tom mentioned to me that he wanted to try Magic Spoon and I had been curious as well. This is bad. We spent $30ish on the variety pack – peanut butter, cocoa, fruity, and frosted. I have only tried the peanut butter and the fruity but there is a strange after taste. Tom has tried all but cocoa. Tom hates it, too. I am sorry if this is an unpopular opinion. This is heavily pushed on some of my podcasts and by some of the influencers I follow. Now I know; I will not be buying this again.

The hotel we stayed in in Nashville had full size shampoo, conditioner, and body wash in the shower. I fell in love with the body wash, especially. Has anyone heard of this brand? I can’t wait to splurge and order a bottle! It says it is rum scented, but I don’t really get that. It is a wonderful light smell that I really can’t describe. The whole hotel smells like it and Mason noticed how great it smelled upon first entering!

Saturday I woke from sleeping in my own bed! Isn’t that the best, too? I had to don a sweatshirt. It was so nice.

My new shoes arrived! I love them! I don’t know if it is because I was wearing very worn out shoes to walk in, but these have great support in my opinion. The tongue is attached and you don’t tie them. I like that aspect, too!

Saturday our boys had 3 friends over and they played games in the basement. It made me so happy and I made two platters to be silly. This one had homemade brownies, little cookies from Trader Joe’s, Sour Patch kids, and chocolate rocks that I get from Paul’s Fruit Market.

Then, I popped popcorn and did individual bags of chips. The guys were so appreciative!

After all the friends came around 2, Tom and I were going to take the boat out, but there had been lots of rain and the river was high with lots of debris. We decided to wait until Sunday.

We decided just to go sit on the banks and have a drink at Captain’s Quarters.

I had a glass of prosecco. See how there are hardly any boats out?

We went home at dinner and the boys ordered Domino’s for their friends and Tom had a Totino’s (he loves them!), and I made the skinny biz pizza dough pizza for me.

I also made two little bread sticks and used some spray butter! Yum!

We put our bedroom tv on the patio and watched t.v. and read.

Sunday morning I did a Kroger run and then made the lemonade pie. This is the first one of the season! This is a recipe from my Aunt Sally – mix about half of a frozen lemonade canister with about 1/4 gallon vanilla ice cream. Stir until it’s melted together and pour into the crust. It works best if you let it freeze an entire 24 hours before serving. Yum!

Mason had a 4th of July party to go to and I offered to make brownies in cupcake liners with homemade icing and sprinkles.

Then, Tom and I finally made it out to the river around 1 on Sunday.

We were NOT part of this party. It looked like fun, though!

We just hung out for a few hours and then pulled into Captain’s Quarters and were met by this cute little duck family.

We ordered some spinach and queso dip and ate on the boat.

And, then we went back home and had cheeseburgers, asparagus, and fries for Tom and Jack. I had a veggie burger with asparagus and a baked potato. Mason was at the party until late. We aren’t big fireworks people anymore so we didn’t go anywhere. The sun made me tired and I could hardly keep my eyes open.

Yesterday was a day of all the things – floor mopping, laundry, taking my car to the shop, and other adulting!

Come back Thursday to hear about Nashville. Tomorrow I will tell you what I packed and what I have been wearing. I’m sure you can hardly wait! Just kidding, of course!

How was your holiday weekend? Can you believe we are already to this point of the summer?

THanks for reading,

Amy

Friday Favorites and Ideas for the Fourth!

Friday, July 2, 2021

Linking up today with Andrea, etc. right here!

I will be back here on Tuesday, July 6th! I decided to take Monday off!

Here are a few favorites from the week. Stay with me and I will share some ideas for your 4th of July celebration!

I liked the Pure so much I got another color called “honey harmony”. Sorry for the bad picture.

I found this at The Dollar Tree and I love it! Have you ever had a fountain vanilla Coke? It is so good!

I haven’t tried this yet, but I bought the strawberry moscato from the summery Target display!

I sped through this book. If you have a kid in college or close to college you may enjoy it more. It’s really good, in my opinion.

I have been trying to find this and I finally found it at a different Target than my normal one. I had it with my instant coffee powder in iced coffee form and it tastes like someone melted a Reese’s Cup. OMG! This is a great afternoon treat!

What are your plans for the 4th of July? We normally try to boat and follow it up with a cookout with just our family of four or with a few other people.

If I go to a cookout I usually like to pick two patriotic colors – maybe just blue and white or red and white. I did find a flag kimono last year on sale and scooped that up! If you scroll to the bottom of this post you will see some outfit ideas! And, there are better pictures here with some other ideas.

If we go on the boat, I have learned to do a portable charcuterie with some red, white, and blue touches. I put things in a plastic container to be arranged later on the boat when we are stopped.

I love to buy:

red, white, and blue potato chips and tortilla chips or blue chips and red salsa

red, white, and blue M and Ms

patriotic Rice Krispies for the treats

blueberries and strawberries – some years I make fruit pizza with these

I would love to create a red, white, and blue candy charcuterie board sometime!

I also love to stroll the grocery aisles looking for red, white, and blue inspiration!

What are your 4th of July traditions? Do you dress for it? Are there any foods you like to make?

I hope you had lots of favorites this week! Let me know one in the comments!

Amy

Easy Popcorn

Thursday, July 1, 2021

Does your family love popcorn as much as mine?

I don’t love the stuff in microwave popcorn. It actually doesn’t look as bad as I thought… but, still..

Take a brown lunch sack and put 1/4 cup of popcorn kernels in it. Add a bit of salt if you would like. Fold the bag over a couple of times. Place the bag upright in the microwave and press your popcorn button. When finished, you can use spray butter (which probably also has chemicals!) or real melted butter if you want!

This would be fun for kids to do! Watch out for hot popcorn kernels, of course!

Amy

What I Wore Wednesday

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Hello! I am happy to link up today with The Style Six here!

Wednesdays are the day I show you what I’ve worn over the last week. Sometimes the outfits are bad and oftentimes the photos are bad! This is real life around here! Now that we have gotten that disclaimer out of the way…

Last week this is what I wore to go to the fancy Italian restaurant with Mason. This is a Target Knox Rose dress that is super soft. I have worn it several times and I think it was a good purchase. Knox Rose is a little bit pricier line at Target but I think you get a higher quality.

This is what I wore to go to lunch on Friday with my friend. You saw this yesterday in my post about denim cutoffs with a dressier blouse!

This is what my friend Elizabeth wore:

I wore this to run an errand:

I may need to say goodbye to this floral blouse. What do you all think? Also, why do I scrunch up the skin between my eyebrows so much?

And, that is it for the week! Sorry I wasn’t better about photos. I wore my palm print skirt to eat dinner at the German restaurant and I’m happy to report that there was no static again! Here is that skirt and it comes in so many prints!

I mentioned yesterday that I have been Marie Kondo’ing (yes, I did just turn sweet Marie into a verb) my summer shoes. We are halfway through the summer and if I haven’t worn a pair yet, I probably am not going to. I took them to my consignment store and got a small amount of cash. I feel like I can breathe and see all of my shoes.

But, then I added two new pairs…. oops.

First, I have been thinking about these for a long time. They were on sale for less than $100 which is really good. I have worn my white faux ones to death, but they are slightly big and slip a bit. I was thinking since I wear so much gold jewelry that these would get a lot of wear and even work into the fall. Birks are also great teacher shoes.

And, this was really by accident. I was in Target for the first time in a long time and these black waterproof ones are only $10. My niece had black ones on for our boating Sunday and I got to thinking that these would be useful into the fall as well.

Now, I feel like I won’t need anymore summer shoes or clothes really for that matter.

What have you been wearing lately?

Amy

Try This Look

Tuesday, June 29. 2021

I go through fashion obsessions. Are you like that? Right now I am loving my two pairs of denim cut offs. I have white, too, but I seem to keep reaching for my blue denim. I have been trying hard to Marie Kondo my life this summer. I feel like this needs to be done at least once a year. I recently did my summer shoes and it felt so good to let so many pairs go. I also did my linen closet and my pantry recently.

Here is what I asked myself when I did my summer shoes:

Am I wearing these now?

Would I buy these right now if they were on a display at a store?

These are the two questions I used to guide me.

I need to do my tops. I am having a harder time with this category because I keep saying, “But, what if I want to wear that when school starts?” I just have too many tops, though, and it makes no sense to keep things I don’t love to wear.

You know you’re getting older when you can’t relate to the fashion in In Style magazine anymore, am I right? I enjoy seeing the styles, the patterns, and the color combinations, but most of what is featured I would never wear.

However, one page spoke to me. I have really been on a denim cut off kick lately and I love the contrast of a little dressy with them.

I like the long sleeves with the shorts better than my outfit below. I have always loved long sleeves with shorts for some reason!

I am obsessed with my new gold Marc Fisher lace up sandals and my Target Universal Thread cut offs. The blouse is consignment and the necklace is also consignment. This is what I wore to lunch Friday and we stopped in a little boutique on the way.

Here are my candidates for long sleeved blouses:

old from Costco!

The next three are all Savanna Jane. Yes, I have a problem!

And, this blouse is Target Universal Thread from this spring:

This is an easy outfit formal that looks modern and is definitely comfortable!

Would you wear this combo? Have you worn this combo?

Amy

Hello Monday

Monday, June 28, 2021

That weekend went by quickly! I am linking up today with Heather, Tanya, and many more here.

Let’s go back to Thursday afternoon when I got my first pedicure of the summer! I chose a color I’ve never done before – a dark teal.

I had fun trying to recreate a street food from Prague with Mason. He went there in 2019 with a school group and we had been talking about trying to make trdelnik. It is a dough that gets wrapped around a cylinder and they cook it at stands in the street. The recipe we found told us to roll up magazines and cover them with foil and suspend them from the edges of a cookie sheet! I don’t think our dough rose enough so I would like to try it again. It gets covered in cinnamon and sugar and sometimes they have a filling.

I started this and I am loving it!

Friday I was supposed to go back to the 18 and over pool with my friend Elizabeth but the weather was not too nice. So, we decided to go out to lunch. We went to a place I had only been to one other time. It is Argentinian inspired I think. It has nods to Argentina, at least.

We sat outside at this cute little table and enjoyed Belgian pommes frites and some white wine before sandwiches and salad.

For dinner Friday night I made everyone a different dish because we were about out of supplies. Tom and Mason had Mexican and Jack had a sandwich and leftover mac and cheese and I had chicken and vegetables.

Saturday I went to the big farmer’s market! It is so nice!

I did not buy these beautiful hydrangeas because mine are below and are doing awesome still! My plant has grown so much and the blooms are peeking out from the fenceline.

I also did a Kroger pick up and I was exhausted by the time I unloaded all of the foods from the farmer’s market and the grocery.

But, then I sat down and watched Pioneer Woman’s daughter’s wedding! It was so pretty! I think Mauricio is so sweet! Anyone watch it?

We were going to take the boat out but it was super windy and the river was quite choppy. After lunch, I ventured out to a shopping center. Versona was disappointing. They have hardly any jewelry anymore. I was looking for a long necklace. Are long necklaces out of style? Francesca’s hardly had any either. I also went into Williams Sonoma and Loft.

Saturday night we had a reservation for our German restaurant. Tom’s birthday was two weeks ago and Father’s Day was last weekend so this was kind of a belated dinner for Tom. It is rather hard to get a reservation for this restaurant!

It is in an unassuming strip mall, but the interior is incredible. I took you to Italy on Friday and now I’m taking you to Germany, right?

The attention to detail is something. I had a glass of house Riesling from the region of Germany of the owner.

I had the vegetarian spatzle. Spatzle is a German noodle. I learned how to make it in Germany in 2000. You have a loose batter that you pour through a sieve into a pot of boiling water.

And, I had some German potato salad served hot.

I didn’t take a photo of Tom and the boys’ foods because they think I’m annoying when I do that. They had pork. Tom had zigeuner schnitzel and the boys both had rahm schnitzel. Everyone loved their food!

Sunday morning I had my coffee with some magazines on the patio and then did cleaning and laundry.

I tried a new combo with my iced coffee. I mixed chocolate and caramel Premier and it was good! I am looking for peanut butter chocolate flavor but have been unsuccessful! It is even out of stock on Amazon until the end of July.

Then, we finally made it to the river this weekend and Tom’s sister and our niece came along. The river was still quite choppy and it was quite windy.

We came home and I made dinner out of German leftovers and a big salad with homemade honey mustard dressing and homemade chicken tenders. We ate as a family and watched Derry Girls!

How was your weekend? I hope it was great!

Amy

Friday Favorites

Friday, June 25, 2021

Happy Friday! How was your week? I am linking up today with Andrea, etc. right here!

Here are a few of my favorites from this week…. I would love to hear yours, as well! In fact, what a positive way to greet people that you see this weekend…”Hi! What was your favorite thing from this week?” Is that weird?

Two TV Shows:

Luckily, our kids will still watch a show with us any evenings we are all home together this summer. We sadly finished Blessed this Mess but we started Derry Girls and I have not heard Tom laugh this hard in a while. I requested subtitles but no one else wanted them so I miss a couple of things. It is quick humor and a thick Irish accent. Anyone watched it? Anyway, when our kids became teenagers having a show that we all enjoyed was a way of bonding. I’m so glad the tradition continues.

Summer Reading:

I hate to ever say a negative thing about a book (just the fact that someone wrote a book is amazing and I hate to be critical) but I also want to be honest. I had to make myself read this book and finish it. Beach Read was my favorite chick lit summer read of last year, but this was meh. Also, neither title fits the book (in my opinion) and that really bothers me. I am very big on book titles, song titles, nail polish color names, etc. Why am I like this? I don’t know. So, I did finish it but it was a chore. The girl annoyed me. Also, they called Indiana University in Bloomington U of I and it is IU. Details! I would love to hear others’ thoughts if you have read it.

I had too many books and I had due dates looming so I had to take some back. I am very excited to start Lauren Weisburger’s next I think!

Beauty Favorites:

I am still keeping a mask in my purse and a bag of masks in my car, but I have not put one on in days and it feels so good. I feel for those with young kids because I think if I had small kids they would mask up for public indoor places and I would probably still wear one, too. Last summer I talked about wearing studs with masks but this summer I like to wear studs to the pool or on the boat. I picked up these little cubic zirconias that look pretty darn good for $4.99 at my consignment shop that sells new jewelry.

Have you tried Sally Hansen Pure? I bought it in Rose Petal. It is a very nice formula. It’s a very light pink that almost looks white.

Food Favorites:

Have I told you about “Skinny Biz Pizza Dough”? My friend Kim told me about it – just Google it and it will pop right up. I made this sauceless pizza one day for lunch and it was amazing! Mushrooms, onions, and fresh mozzarella balls that I cut up were the only toppings I did.

I had a bit of leftover dough and I made a breadstick for Mason. It’s so cute! It turned out like a little baguette. I think I am going to make more of these for both boys!

Possibly Favorite Purchase:

I have been walking quite a bit and really needed new shoes. My current ones are really old and I like them but I really think a newer pair will help me. I ordered these and I’m excited. That price tag hurt. Anyone have this brand? I will send them back if they aren’t perfect for me.

Favorite Snacks:

When I need something sweet I have the classic dum dums suckers in a treat jar. I have a light string cheese every day. I love string cheese! And, I order a box of these individual popcorn bags from Amazon. I have a bag of this most days, too.

Favorite Experiences of the week:

On Tuesday I met up with two friends for lunch at a cute spot called Noosh Nosh. Heather is my college roommate and Dee was her high school best friend. Heather introduced me to Dee during college and we became friends, too. Dee had identical twin boys before I got pregnant. I remember her saying her stomach itched so bad as it was stretching to accomodate them. Well, one year after Dee said that I was walking with Heather and I said to her, “My stomach is really itching.” Guess what? I found out I was having identical twin boys not long after! So, Dee and I have that connection. I was bad about taking photos but we had a nice time catching up.

I had a Greek salad with salmon.

And, on Wednesday evening, I had an amazing coupon and asked Mason if he wanted to enter and try Grassa Gramma for the first time. It is located in a strip center which is shocking. The interior is out of this world. It is an Italian restaurant where everything is made in house – homemade pasta included.

The server does a toast to life with you when you are first seated.

They give you homemade focacia bread. Mason loved it and has become quite the foodie.

We split the Caesar salad and they split it in the kitchen for us. The lettuce is roasted and is has pumpkin seeds. It is the best Caesar I have ever had.

I ordered pasta primavera with goat cheese.

Mason ordered salmon with crab risotto.

The attention to detail is incredible. It is really dark in the restaurant and Mason kept talking about how much he liked the dark lighting. I had to use my phone flashlight to see the menu.

We got to sit on the balcony which I had never gotten to do.

The men’s and women’s bathrooms share these sinks in the outer area.

Anyway, it is a really cool place. I enjoyed having that one on one time with Mason. I told Jack I wanted to take him out next. Jack has the palate of a 5 year old so I will look for the best chicken tenders in the city.

I love my area of town so much, by the way. The strip center that this is located in also has my Kroger, my tailor, our Thai restaurant, our Mediterranean restaurant, my Cuban restaurant, and my UPS store for all of my Amazon returns (ha!). Tom jokes that I stay within a 5 miles radius of our house and that I won’t go any further. And, post-Covid (or hopefully almost post-Covid), I think I appreciate these places even more.

Funny side note: my kids say I know someone everywhere I go and it really is true. Even though we live in the biggest city in our state, I see someone I know as if it is a small town. I have lived here for 23 years. Our water and bread girl was my student from two years ago. I see someone I know every time I go in Kroger. I saw three people I knew at the DMV recently! To those of you that currently live in small towns, this may surprise you.

WIshing you a wonderful weekend full of even more favorites,

Amy