Do you guys ever feel like you listen to the same music over and over again? I know I’ll go through phases where I really only listen to 3 albums or so over the course of the month. Here are some of the artists I’ve had on heavy rotation lately:
Modest Mouse – Strangers to Ourselves
Ok, Modest Mouse is my favorite band. I’ve loved them since I was 14 years old and I think it’s safe to say I’ve heard all their songs at least once. It had been almost 8 years since they put out an album, so I was itching to hear this one. I was not at all disappointed by this album, and apparently they’re already in the studio recording their next album with Krist Novoselic from Nirvana. I can’t wait!
Favorite/least favorite – Sugar Boats/Pistol
Sia – 1000 Forms of Fear
I was surprised by how much I like this album as a whole. All the songs are all incredibly intimate. The first time I listened to the album I cried. Chandelier and Elastic Heart have become pretty popular singles, but there’s so much more to this album. I think Sia’s pretty visionary, the way she presents herself, the openness with her audience, it’s really hard to come by in a pop act.
Favorite/least favorite – Burn the Pages/Cellophane
Death Cab for Cutie – Transatlanticism
Ok, this album is over 10 years old at this point, but it’s still one of my favorites. This album will always be one of my favorite albums, there’s so much nostalgia associated with it. Death Cab came out with a new album this year. I haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, but I think I’ll give it a go soon.
Favorite/least favorite – Expo ’86/Sorry, N/A
What have you guys been listening to lately? Any recommendations for me?
Here’s another round of my favorite things from Etsy. I’m loving the pink/mint/gold/white color theme, as you’ll see in my picks for this month.
I collect quirky salt and pepper shakers. These little siamese kitty cuties would make a perfect addition to my collection.
I love the colors and polka dots on this cute painted wooden bead necklace. I keep wanting to try a DIY of this myself, but I don’t know if anything I make would be as cute as the ones I’ve seen on Etsy. Everything from the MODFRESH shop is so adorable, I want it all!
Elephants are my favorite animal. This elephant tee is so cute and cozy, I can totally see myself wearing this.
This pull-down chart of the brain is so cool! I would love to have it near my desk to inspire some creativity.
Can you tell I really love wooden stuff? These vases are so adorable. I love the color palette so much.
This triangle print download is so adorable. It would go great with some other prints I have my eye on at the moment. There may be a gallery wall in the works.
I don’t know about you, but I have about a million tote bags. Ok, that’s an exaggeration, but I do have quite a lot. This cute French cat tote bag would be an adorable addition to my collection.
This Joan of Arc quote print is so inspiring and cute. This would be the perfect addition to my upcoming gallery wall.
Two weekends ago I went on a family trip to Ojai to celebrate my stepdad’s birthday. You got to see a sneak peak of the beautiful view in my last post, but I thought I’d share a little bit more about my time there.
We rented a giant house in Ojai Valley with 5 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. My mom, stepdad, stepbrother, stepsister, brother-in-law, nephew, aunt, uncle and all stayed in the house with 4 dogs.
My stepbrother and I drove down from the Bay Area together on Thursday night and arrived around midnight. The following day, the boys went out to do some kart racing while the ladies and Archer (my nephew) stayed around to prep for the party that night. My stepsister, Emilie, and I were in charge of inflating balloons. Archer helped a bit by choosing the balloon and ribbon colors. He really enjoyed them, as you can see.
We did our big birthday celebration of Friday evening. We were joined by my stepdad’s stepsister and brother-in-law (is my family confusing you yet?) I was in charge of making salad, which was a huge crowd-pleaser. I swapped out pomegranate seeds for dried cranberries and added avocado. Seriously, you’ve got to serve this salad next time you have a party. I would have eaten only that all night if need be.
My stepdad requested that everyone bring a slideshow of about 40 photos to share with everyone. It was really cool to see my family’s photos, hear their stories and see what memories they all cherished most. Our gift to my stepdad was a painting of his choice by Ventura artist Hilda Kilpatrick-Freyer. We went to Ventura for lunch on Saturday and got the chance to check out her amazing apartment/studio. Can you believe this view?
We all departed on Sunday. It was really only a 3 day weekend, but it was packed with so much, it went by too quickly. I was so exhausted afterwards and so ready to sleep in my own bed. Here are a few more memories from the weekend:
Here’s just a little of what’s been going on in my life this month. My BFF and I did facemasks, drank wine and watched Lifetime movies. We also did a treat yo’ self day, where we got mani-pedis, I BOUGHT A CLARISONIC FACE BRUSH THAT CHANGED MY LIFE, went to the mall, bought some Lush stuff (I got a Rose Jam scented massage bar and it smells like a dream), went to In ‘n Out, and just generally treated ourselves. I was my own Valentine this year. My mom sent me a card and I had a perfectly lovely Valentine’s Day celebration by myself. I ordered pizza and watched massive amounts of One Tree Hill. Unfortunately, I didn’t have dinner with the real Matthew Gray Gubler, but this photo I found online will have to do for now. My co-workers and I spent an afternoon making a Left Shark papercraft after the Superbowl. It was super time consuming but also a totally fun team bonding experience. It was National Pizza Day and I discovered BitMoji. You’re welcome. It was also National Margarita Day, so I celebrated that with friends. Here’s a picture of Hannah getting the perfect pic to post to Instagram. Art is alive!
I ended the month with a family trip to Ojai to celebrate my stepdad’s birthday. I’ll be writing separately about that trip, but here’s a pic of the view from our rental house to tide you over:
I’ve never really liked the idea of New Year’s resolutions. January 1st seems like such an arbitrary time to decide to make changes in your life. In past years I’ve been way too ambitious with my New Year’s goals. Last year I resolved to go to the gym 3 times a week, and I was good about it for the first 3 months or so. But life happens, and I quickly fell off after a few months.
My resolution this year was no less ambitious. I decided I would try to read a book a week, or 52 books this year. So far, I’ve read:
I’m using Goodreads to keep up with my progress. Right now, I’m two books behind, but I’m in the middle of the longest book I’ve read so far this year, The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer. Life keeps getting in my way, but it’s my honest to goodness goal to finish this book by the end of the week.
The next book I’m going to start on is Yes, Please by Amy Poehler. I’m so excited to read this one! I find Amy so inspiring and a friend of mine read the book and said it was like getting advice from your cool young aunt. This will be my first non-fiction book of the year, I’m excited to mix it up a bit.