Countdown to 2019

IMG_6662.PNG

The countdown to 2019 is on. Just a 3.5 months left.

How are your resolutions or goals for the year coming along? Mine are hit and miss. Still some time to do some work.

1. Date night with Nick (each month)…we have not been great with this. We have plans for the next two months.

2. Monthly date with boys…no 100% but I’m trying.

3. Monthly featured country…oops. We were so good with these at the beginning of the year. Now not so much. A nice remember.

4. Meditate daily…I’m way better than last year but still not great. Still time, still time.

5. 5 alone minutes with each boy each night….We do this when we need it but we should do it more consistently.

6. Learn to play one song on the guitar…I straight up didn’t even remember this was a goal. Jingle Bells anyone?

7. Finish Wedding Album…DONE

8.  Finish baby books and photo organization…Give me one rainy day Saturday and a bunch of legos for the boys and I could get this done. I WILL get this done this year.

9. Weekly piano lessons with A…hit and miss. Coming back to it.

10. Make a capsule wardrobe…summer was a capsule wardrobe and the fall is much closer.

11. Complete and launch course (Goals on the Side)…Coming soon. Who wants to be in a beta test.

12. Finish 3 (3!!) Children's books and be an active member of 12x12…one book down. 2 to go.

13. Read the book shelf…hanging head in shame.

14.  Launch a podcast…Gearing up for this in December.

15.  Learn to knit (again)…I remembered hot to knit! I just started practicing again.

16. Become more involved in activist pursuits…YES!!

17.  Work hard to pass full day K…Who is voting with me on November 6th?

18.  Set up seasonal family bucket lists and do them…YES! (Thank you fun stickers from Michael’s.”

First Friday Faves

What the what?!  How did Fall already get here?  Okay, its not quite here yet so I have resisted the temptation to share pumpkin anything.  We will save that for October.  Instead just take a few of my faves to spice up your month.

Read: White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism

download (2).jpg

Just a chapter into this book and I know its going to be a game changer.  Its hard and uncomfortable and that's exactly what we need. 

Buy: Boys Will Be Good Humans

ufPqe59_2048x.jpg

#BoyMomGoals Raise good humans.  Caring, imaginative, passionate, kind, hard working humans.  

Drink: Peppermint Tea

traderjoespepperminttea.jpg.750x750_q85ss0_progressive.jpg

Peppermint tea recently came back into my life.  I don't know why I forgot about my love of Peppermint tea.  I'm sorry peppermint tea.  I will never forget again.  Thank you for coming back to me.

Listen: Harry Potter and the Sacred Text

download (3).jpg

Where has this podcast been all my life?!  Someone just suggested this podcast to me and I have  not stopped listening.  If you have read and loved Harry Potter this is a must listen.

Eat Local: Blue Hippo Coffee

 

download.png

A town has a growing and diverse restaurant selection.  And yet for the longest time we haven't had a proper coffee shop.  I have a feeling this wonderful place will turn into the heart of the town.  If you're local stop by.  If you're not local find your own local gem.

That's a wrap on September.  Or at least my favorites for September.  Happy almost fall!

Love,

Tovah

Week of 9.3- Meals and Workouts

IMG_6435.JPG

Funny story.  My plan was to post this on Monday and discuss how I was going to try this plan but it might change.  I haven't been able to post this until now and I've already changed the plan.  I really, really wanted to lift weights today and so I did.  It was totally worth it.  

Now here is the food part:

Monday: Labor Day Picnic

Tuesday: Leftovers from Labor Day Picnic

Wednesday: Meatballs with homemade sauce and pasta (all of out of the freezer)  Family recipe ;)

Thursday: Rachel Ray's Super Sloppy Joes (Because football is back.  Go Birds!)

Friday:  Greek Yogurt Chicken

Saturday:  Friend's Birthday Party!

Sunday:  Good question??

September cheer is here.

Okay, okay.  So I was a bit aspirational for August.  50 miles walked?  Yeah, that didn't happen.  Exercised every day but rest days?  Yes.  Meditate every day?  Nope.  (Although way more than the month before.)  Healthy eating?  Yes!  5 spa nights?  Yeppers.  I definitely did not get to all the books I planned on reading.  So it was a mixed bag.

This month here is the plan:

- Finish LIIFT 4

- Start Piyo (More on this in a later post.)

- Walk 2 days a week.  (Anyone want to be my walking buddy?)

- Eat health: This means, lots LOTS of veggies, lots LOTS of water, and eating food as close to the sources as possible.  Keeping processed sugar to a minimum.  Keeping gluten to a minimum.  (No, I'm not allergic but man do I bloat after I eat it.  Its time for me to admit that my body does not like it.)  

- Finish Middlesex and another book from the shelf of books I never read.  (Yes, I have been reading Middlesex for what seems like forever.) 

- Start knitting.  Its on my 18 in 2018 list and if I don't start it soon its never going to happen.

- Finish my Goal setting course.  I'm getting tantalizingly close. Stay tuned for the chance to be part of the first group through the course by the end of the month!

- Dates which each kid and husband.  Yes another good one from 18 of 2018.  It hasn't happened but it will soon.  Already have some good plans!  (So what if they're all in my head.  They will happen this month!)

- Finishing tweaking third draft of one book and get to a second draft of another. 

What about you?  Back to school is year.  What are your plans?

September: Month of Meals

IMG_6418.JPG

Its been a long time since I sat down and done a monthly meal plan.  A long, long time.  I used to do it so much that I even added a section to my planner that included the meal plan.  And yet, here I am.  Never doing it.  Boo.  

So with the fresh school year comes a fresh start at meal planning.  We keep it simple in these parts.  On most Mondays my MIL comes to watch the kids and usually brings food.  Wohooo!  We have tacos, or some Americanized variation of tacos on Tuesday but Taco Tuesday sounds a lot better than Taco-ish Tuesday.  We usually have pasta one day a week because it makes life a little bit easier and ensures we have leftovers.  I dig fall food so I try to incorporate, squash and pumpkin, chili and stews.  

I try to keep food to what the kids like but I'm slightly over that so I'm incorporating a meal a week they might not like and in those cases they'll just have to fall back on the pasta.  

I can't make a lot of promises with my monthly plan  other than we will definitely not stick to it.  Some meals will give us more leftovers than I plan and some will give us less.  There will definitely be pancakes for dinner one night or two or three and I'm sure the kids will have fish sticks or chicken fingers.  That being said this gives us such a head start on planning and grocery shopping.  Bonus points that most of the meat is in the freezer already.

Do you meal plan?  How far in advance?  How much do you stay the course?

Eligible #TovahReads

IMG_4917.jpeg

Eligible is a modern interpretation of Pride and Prejudice. Now, I am going to say right at the beginning, spoiler alert, spoiler alert, spoiler alert, because I plan to talk about the end of the book, or the middle of the book, or all parts of the book. So if you don't want to know what happens in the book, don't read anymore. 

    I am a huge Jane Austen fan and a huge fan of Pride and Prejudice. It's probably my favorite Jane Austen novel, although how can you pick just one? I was really excited to read this book. I heard good things and I was not disappointed. I definitely was on the lookout for bad plot points.  Someone had warned me that the story sometimes worked a little too hard to fit into the premise of Pride and Prejudice. And to a certain extent I think that's true, although I thought some of the ways they pulled in things like reality TV or - spoiler alert, spoiler alert, don't read ahead - a transgender person was interesting.

    I love the way that they ended with Mary speaking. I thought that was great - although now it makes me want to go back and read Pride and Prejudice and know if that book ends that way. Sometimes the BBC version of Pride and Prejudice runs into my head and I can't remember if it's the end of the movie or the end of the book. Did that happen to anyone else? I mean, why wouldn't it happen? I will totally admit that in the book, Eligible, the Fitzwilliam Darcy character was played by, of course, Colin Firth. So I don't even know if she took the time to describe what he looked like because in my head he looks like Colin Firth. He will always look like Colin Firth and anyone named Darcy will, of course, always look like Colin Firth.

    So getting back to the story, the one thing that I found to be truly astounding was the fact that Mrs. ... her name escapes me ... was truly a horrible, horrible person. I don't know if she was a horrible person in the book, Pride and Prejudice, and just the way she transfers over she turns into a horrible person, or if this is new to this book. But Mrs. so-and-so is a straight-up racist-bigot, uppity, richie-rich, not nice person in this book. And I think it was totally appropriate because that's probably the way she really was, and I don't know if I'm ever going to be able to read Pride and Prejudice the same way without picturing her as this really awful person.  I think the rest of the characters were fairly consistent. I enjoyed the change and evolution that they took to make them more modern. I enjoyed them completely. But I just had to laugh at how horrible, truly horrible, she was.
    So I would highly suggest the book. I think it's a great book if you're a Pride and Prejudice fan. I think it would probably be a great book if you're not a Pride and Prejudice fan - although I would love to hear somebody who doesn't know the Pride and Prejudice story at all and reads the book, and see if it can stand on its own as book without knowing the story. Either way, it gave me a wonderful outlet to enjoy Colin Firth again. It inspired me to read Pride and Prejudice again, of course, because it takes just about nothing to encourage me to read Pride and Prejudice again. I truly loved it.
 

First Friday Faves

Okay, we're here.  The first Friday of the month.  Oh no.  Whoops.  Okay, so its not even close to the first Friday of the month but I wanted to squeeze in one more set of my favorites before pumpkin spice takes over. 

Here we go.  A few end of summer favorites.

NV Ruby Red Rose Grapefruit

 

 Delicious!  Refreshing!  It tastes like summer!

Delicious!  Refreshing!  It tastes like summer!

 This is delicious.  Just delicious.  And easy.  And if you have a coke laying around (which you should because its bad for you, but if you do) its delicious! 

This is delicious.  Just delicious.  And easy.  And if you have a coke laying around (which you should because its bad for you, but if you do) its delicious! 

 Comfy shirt.  Sweet message.

Comfy shirt.  Sweet message.

When Life Gives You Lululemons

 

 Squeeze in one more really fun read before the fall!

Squeeze in one more really fun read before the fall!

 Listen to this podcast.  Its one series and worth your time!

Listen to this podcast.  Its one series and worth your time!

Self care is not selfish.

Surround yourself with people who remind you of what you can be and love you for what you are. (4).png

I often, no maybe always, think of self care in terms of me.  Maybe its I have boys and well I never really think of self care in terms of men.  That's rather short sighted of me though isn't it.  For two big reasons.  One, men need self care.  They need moments of calm and quiet.  Maybe I think that men demand those times for themselves more easily than woman but that's not a bad thing.  IN FACT that's a good thing. And reason number two.  One of these men in my life will probably have a woman in his life.  They need to know she needs time and if she doesn't take it herself she needs to be encouraged to do it.  In fact maybe more importantly than encouraging a woman to take time for herself men need to realize that when a woman takes time for herself its for the whole family.  Or for your work family.  We as humans function better when we are calm and in peace and well rested and healthy.  I love being busy.  I love good stress but bad stress, no thank you.

So I know that as women and mothers we should be able to take time for ourselves but I know many of us struggle with it.    So think of self care as care for your family.  But also as a chance to show your kids that its okay to make self care a priority.

We all need to take of ourselves.  We need to raise our kids to know that its okay to do that.

Its not selfish.  Its necessary.  Go forth and face mask and meditate and put your feet up.    

August- My last chance

IMG_5509.PNG

Okay, don't hate me for saying this but I sort of view August as my last chance to get after my yearly goals.  Hear me out.  Once September hits we're back to school, back to sports, back to birthday parties (at least in my family) and back to all the holidays.  If I'm not careful suddenly its January and I'm making a new list of goals.  

Many of my goals year after year have to do with self care.  That whole you can't pour from an empty cup thing.  I LOVE being busy and I love my goals and my to do list but if I'm sick or tired or run down none of that will happen.  Back to school also means back to more good TV (although with Netflix it never really stops does it?)  It might mean less sleep.  Post season baseball definitely means less sleep.  

So here I am in August figuring out the time line for the rest of the year.  When do I need to hit my goals.  When will those goals happen.  What's next?  It all happens in August.  Its also my last chance to look at my calendar and squeeze in our summer bucket list.  No lazy days of summer for me.

These were my goals for the month:  

I will walk 50 miles.
I will do 25 workouts.
I will meditate 20 times. 
I will do weekly spa nights. (This might mean just a Trader Joes mask but whatever.)

Other suggestions were drink more water, get some sleep.  All great ideas.  

And here's another one inspired by my new mug.  Set goals.  Dream big.  But be patient, oh so patient with myself.

What about you?  Do you view August as your last chance too?

 

 

Small Great Things #TovahReads

IMG_4918 (1).jpeg

This is my review of "Small Great Things." So, I recognize that "Small Great Things" is a fictional book written by Jodi Picoult that could possibly fall into the much-maligned, and I hate to use it, "chick lit" genre.  No big deal, right?  Wrong.

    I will admit that, when I first started reading the book, and I was reading a white woman writing in the voice of a black woman, I felt very uncomfortable. It did not sit well with me. I felt like there was appropriation going on. I felt like I couldn't put my finger on it, but it just isn't appropriate for a white woman to speak in the voice of a black woman. 

    And then the next chapter, she's speaking in the voice of a white supremacist, and I thought, "Well, okay, so she's obviously stretched herself here." I am in many Facebook groups and one in particular, we have not shied away from talking about white people and the issues we have and the issues we create. Many of those issues are the results of us trying to be colorblind and not realizing that being colorblind is a privilege.

    Many of the issues that we create is a result of us trying to pretend that we are not benefiting from a racist system, and that we are not actually benefiting from the fact that people of color are kept down in our country. Maybe we aren't the ones, or at least we don't think we're the ones, that are consciously keeping people down, but, in fact, we are benefiting from the system and their oppression.

    This group that I'm in has talked a lot about that. It has pushed me from thinking, "I'm not doing anything wrong" to thinking, "If I'm not being an active ally, then yes, I am, in fact, doing something wrong." 

    I was reading this book, and every once in a while, I read a fiction book, the last time I did this was "The Hate You Give," where you think all of those books, all of those non-fiction books, all of those studies I read, I could throw out the window because it was totally explained in this fiction book. And that's the way I felt with "The Hate You Give," and, to a certain extent, that's the way I felt with this book, "Small Great Things."

    "Small Great Things," like many Jodi Picoult novels, is taken from different perspectives. There are three perspectives. One is a black woman, one is a white supremacist man, and one is a white attorney/public defender. Obviously, I felt most that the white attorney/public defender was most relatable to me. I watched the evolution that she went through, and I thought about what people in this group that I'm in have tried to say over and over and over again, and some people hear it, and some people don't. I thought, maybe we all just need to read this book. 

    Now, I'm not saying that "Small Great Things" is going to change your life, and I'm not saying that "Small Great Things" is going to change the world or our country or the path that we're on or race relations. And I’m not saying there are non-fiction books that you could learn more from.  I am saying that, if you can't wrap your mind around what white privilege is and the fact that, if you're white, you benefit from white privilege, even if you don't realize it, I highly suggest that you read this book.

    It is a fiction book. It is uncomfortable. There are times that were incredibly uncomfortable for me. And there were times that I thought, "Okay, I can handle this." There were also times, I admit, that it's a fiction book, so you're like, "Well, that would never happen," and that's okay because it's a fiction book. 

    If you are in that camp where you just think that maybe it doesn't apply to you.  Fine. Fine. Maybe it doesn't apply to you, and that's fine that you're going to think that. But I think that we should all read this book frankly because sometimes I think that fiction books allow us to wrap our mind around something that, if we were talking about reality, we really wouldn't be able to do. 

    So, that's my takeaway from "Small Great Things." I read through it quickly, like most Jodi Picoult books. It was a fast read. It was enjoyable and entertaining, but it was intense. But once again, I kind of knew that's what I was getting into with a Jodi Picoult novel. And that is my review of "Small Great Things." 
 

What makes a "good" mom?

I was asked recently to define for myself what it means to be a good mother.  I was asked a week and a half ago, and I have still really, really struggled to figure it out. To be honest, in most aspects of my life, I'm a pretty competitive person and I struggle with comparing myself to other people. But in this example, I don't really compare myself to other moms and I really do focus on what makes me feel like I'm being a good mother. And honestly, I still don't know what it is.

Could this possibly be why I often feel like I'm failing?

Growing up, my mom always said, quality over quantity. She was a working mom and she was not able to come into the classroom all the time, although I don't really remember the other moms that did but I suppose they were there.  I do remember that she was always there for field trips and special events and things like that. And part of me knows that that is what I need to do, but the other part of me thinks that I just want to be at everything. I don't want to miss a minute if I can help it.  On the other hand,I like not being with my kids sometimes, I like the time off and the break and moments to think that work often provides. On the other hand, I don't want to miss anything at all. And at this point I think I've run out of hands. 

I struggle with this partly because I think it's good for the kids to have other people, or go with friend's parents, or to have someone else take them somewhere or watch them.  I have fond memories of riding in the back of friends' parents' station wagons or mini vans.  I don't remember what we were doing or where we were going but I know my mom wasn't there.  I actually think it's good for them and so, in a way, I think I'm being selfish to not want that.

My goal as a mom (because you know I love to set goals) is that my kids are independent and they can go around the world and feel comfortable to follow their dreams.  That they're kind and compassionate people.  Of course I want to achieve this by never letting them go and tucking them in every night for as long as they let me.  I want to read them books every single night.

What I think it really comes down to is that I want to be reliable.  I want them to be able to depend on me.  I want them to know that if I make a promise, I will keep it.  I just have to figure out how that actually translates into every day actions. So, there you go. I figured it out.   Except now I think I have more questions than when I started.  

Like what does reliable look like to me and how does that differ from a 4 year old?

First Friday Faves

First Friday Faves are already here and man it has been quite a month.  Here are some of my favorites that I plan on enjoying the month of July.

Class Mom  

This book is funny.  And true.  Perhaps an exaggeration on what being a class mom is like but its definitely based in a little truth.

IMG_4605.jpg

Maine Isle Flip Flops

A summer classic.  

305196_39646_41.jpg

Nellie and Joe's Famous Key Lime Juice

This is my fave because it makes really great key lime pies and its not too bad with the mojitoes either.

keylimepiejuice.jpg

Hysteria

I'm a bit of a podcast junkie and my go to pod casts are definitely from Crooked Media.  Check out the new one Hysteria.  All women, all the time.

IMG_4604.jpg

Lawyer Moms of America

So, a few of us have been a little busy over the last few weeks...check us out and join us!  The dream of what America can be is still worth fighting for.  So are those children.  There is no such thing as other people's children.  

Untitled design.png

#WhyIFight

Why I fight.

image_6483441.JPG

Because I grew up watching the Cosby Show and Family Ties and I thought those worlds were real.

Because I thought that a woman could be anything a man could be.

Because I thought that our country provides refuge to those who need it.

Because I thought that we were the good guys.

Because I thought we got rid of the Nazis and racism was gone and segregation was over.

Because I was so very wrong.

Because today I watched a parade where everyone.  EVERYONE. was celebrated.

Because people waved their flags at the same time as reminding their neighbor that there is an election coming up in November.  

Because I don't believe helping others reach their goals means my kids won't have the same chance to reach their own goals.

Because I read the Declaration of Independence and it demands that we hold our government accountable.  That we demand better.  And perhaps the writers were concerned only for white land owning men but I say we can do better for EVERYONE.

Today at the parade a little boy had a sign that said "Try America Try".

And that's what we have to do right?  We have to try to do better.  We have to try every day.  I'm not going to pretend that the US is perfect.  Its far from it.  Its imperfect.  Its so imperfect.  But we're all imperfect.  I'm not going to give up on it.  Not now.  Not ever.  I'm going to keep going.  Keep pushing her.  Good old America.  Its #WhyIFight.

Don't be numb. Don't be silent.

Something has been weighing on my heart for the last few days. I've been meaning to write about it for awhile but its always late and I push it off to the next day.  

For the last, almost two weeks, a number of other lawyer moms and I have been putting together a day of action concerning the separation of migrant families.  Like most of America we are outraged by what is going on, both as lawyers and moms.

Before I got so involved I kept thinking about myself as a child reading books about Germany before WW2.  I remember thinking that I would have been a brave person to speak out.  I would have stood up.  I wouldn't have been silent.  And yet there was watching atrocity after atrocity happen in our own country and I was in fact being silent.  I needed to be able to look my kids in the eye 30 years from now and say I tried.  I did the best I could.  I wasn't silent. 

But lets be honest.  I have been silent.  I have been complicit.  I have looked the other way sheltered by the way our country has treated People of Color.  Sheltered by my white privilege.  I have been able to choose when to look and choose when to look away. 

I refuse to look away ever again.  I also refuse to be shocked.  If you are shocked about the way our country is treating these migrant families then you haven't been paying attention.  We as a nation have treated the poor, the new, the people of color horribly.  We have stolen their land.  We have shipped them off to camps.  This is not new.  It is just recent and for that it is shocking. 

I want to pledge to you that while I am focused right now on the migrant families I will not look away again.  I will not be silent again.

It is time that we say enough is enough.  We won't be numb.  We won't be shocked.  We will use our voices to stand up for people in this country who have been forgotten time and time again. We will not go back.

Step one to a capsule wardobe

IMG_4004.JPG

Capsule wardrobes are all the rage.  Okay I don't actually know if they are all the rage but they were at some point, recently.  One thing I loved about being pregnant was the limited options of clothing.  It made life so easy.  I always swore that when I got down to that ideal weight I would get myself a great capsule wardrobe.

Well, about two months ago I had the most uncomfortable day.  I did not like what I was wearing at all.  I wrote about it here:

Today was one of those days. Insecurities ran high. Self doubt. Comparisons to myself and others. 

Most of the day was spent running the kids around. I didn't feel comfortable or confident in what I was wearing. I would see other moms who looked like they had it all together. Cute outfits. Not chasing all of their kids. I would do math in my head. "She had a baby a year older than mine so technically she's not doing better than me. Oh, she had a baby just 6 months ago. Look how good she looks." This was my day. Add on a 4 year old who would not listen. AT. ALL. and it was a long day. 

Now before you go saying stuff. Let me jump right in and say what I was saying to myself as much as I could all day. I know I needed to hear it. Maybe you do too.

Just because someone looks put together and smiling on the outside doesn't mean they are. Everyone has their own cross to bear. Everyone has their own struggles. You can't compare yourself to others. You don't know their lives unless you have walked in their shoes. 

And as for me. Well, I am strong. I am healthy. My body is miraculous. I would take every extra pound, every feeling of insecurity for those three special little boys. I am one of the lucky ones. I am blessed. I am not defined by the number on the scale or the size of my pants. I am my harshest critic and I need to be kinder to myself. I would never treat someone the way I was treating myself today so why did I let me. My arms can carry kids and groceries and give excellent hugs. My body is good for snuggles and my feet are perfect for chasing after little boys. 

I am enough. Today. Today I am enough. No matter what my future size I will be enough. There is not if or when or butt. 

I am enough. You are enough.

Of course I got a ton of great feedback and of course I felt good and empowered.  But I still didn't like my clothing.  I still didn't feel good and I knew I would spend the summer stressing about what I would wear  Well, I have a friend who swears by just wearing black dresses every single day of the year.  That might be too small of a capsule for me, mainly because I live in the north east where its cold in the winter.  I did think there was something to this black dress thing because who doesn't feel good in a black dress.  I already had some black dresses and I bought a few more cheap ones (thank you Old Navy and Amazon).  I'm not going to lie I did have to learn about what to do with thigh chafing because a dress every day meant there would definitely be thigh chafing.  Once I sorted that out I was off to the races.

And OMG it is amazing.  Totally amazing. Any day I'm not working, and even some day I'm working, I'm wearing a black dress.  Sometimes with flip flops.  Sometimes with heels.  A hoody.  A jean jacket.  A blazer.  sneakers.  Whatever.  It is sooooo simple and amazing.

We will see how the summer goes but I think i'm going to like this.  Once the test of the summer  is over than we can go with the winter.  I'm thinking a couple cardigans, a blazer or two, black pants and of course my black dresses.

Stay tuned...half way to check this off my 18 in 2018 list.

I love habits...yes, its true.

IMG-3741.JPG

I used to proudly claim that "I'm not good with change."  As if that was some sort of badge of honor.  As if not being good with change was a good thing.  Now I embrace change.  I lean into it.  I know that with change comes good things.  That being scared is good.  

That being said, I love habits.  I love the routines.  I'm not exaggerating.  The word love is not an exaggeration here.  I embrace my habits.  At least if they are good habits.  I try to get as many good habits as possible because if I make good habits it means I don't have to think about it.  Its hard to make good habits but its not hard to keep good habits.  Once you've got them you can keep them.  (Current good habit I'm trying to work on is going to bed early...obviously I'm less than successful.)

The habits.  Our daily routines.   The simple things.  Right now they are what make up the fabric of our  lives.  Because lets be honest, with three little ones life is unpredictable enough.  (I mean we found three bugs they put in a box for toothpaste today because they thought it would make a good home.)  

Sure I dream big.  I set goals.  But that doesn't mean I don't find the joy and magic in my every day. I try to find the magic in the simple things.  Like a hot cup of tea.  Or a beautiful pebble.  (Or at least beautiful to me.  I love a rock collection.)

So lets keep dreaming big.  Keep setting goals.  But lets find the joy in the in the simple things.  In our habits.  If you do you will be forever grateful.  Or perhaps if you are grateful and then you will find the joy in the every day.  

First Friday Faves

First Friday Faves are here because May went in the blink of an eye.  Just a few fun things to kick off the month of June.

For the Love with Jen Hatmaker

170x170bb.jpg

My podcasts consist mostly of political and personal development.  I recently read one of Jen Hatmaker's books and one of Rachel Held Evans books.  As luck would have it they just did a podcast together. 

Blueberries for Sal

91EvEh0tbxL.jpg

Growing up summer always meant a trip to Maine.  Its been a few years since I've been there but we have a few favorite books about Maine we always read.  This one is my favorite.  

TogetHER Rising

Together-Rising-660.png

Glennon Doyle is one of my favorites.  Favorite bloggers. Social media people.  Writers.  And now she is one of my favorite activists.  With her organization she figures out what the serious needs are.  Whether its diapers in Syria or lawyers at the border.  She gets out there and tells it like it is.  

Trader Joe's Watermelon Cucumber Cooler

watercuke1.jpg

This is summer in a bottle.  I'm not kidding.  Over ice.  Over ice with vodka.  Or you know, just on its own.  Amazing.

Only Love Today by Rachel Macy Stafford

515XWQtBK2L._SX327_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

I already wrote a bit about this book.  Its sort of like a daily reader except there is no pressure to read it daily.  It's exactly what it says.  Reminders to breathe more, stress less, and choose love.  Seriously, who can't say yes to that?!

18 for 2018

Its May 30th.  I've used excuse after excuse not do my 18 in 2018 list.  There are 7 months left in the year.  Some things I'm working.  Some things are super aspirational.  Either way, they're on the list.  I've written them down. I'm sharing them with the world.  Time to make a plan to hit these goals.

1. Date night with Nick (each month)

2. Monthly date with boys

3. Monthly featured country

4. Meditate daily

5. 5 alone minutes with each boy each night

6. Learn to play one song on the guitar

7. Finish Wedding Album

8.  Finish baby books and photo organization

9. Weekly piano lessons with A

10. Make a capsule wardrobe

11. Complete and launch course (Goals on the Side)

12. Finish 3 (3!!) Children's books and be an active member of 12x12

13. Read the book shelf

14.  Launch a podcast

15.  Learn to knit (again)

16. Become more involved in activist pursuits

17.  Work hard to pass full day K

18.  Set up seasonal family bucket lists and do them