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Soaking up my son’s sweetness this week. He still reaches for my hand when we go on “nature hikes” (his term, not mine!), and doesn’t he look like a little cherub here? With the fine baby hair and round cheeks? The John Lennon glasses don’t hurt. I continue to struggle with expecting too little of him and too much of my daughter, and am constantly pulling up and recalibrating. This week, I tried to find ways to give them both more autonomy — not just Emory! We ordered small pitchers to hold milk (started with one, but then it caused too many early morning fights) and placed them on the first shelf of the fridge, and then decanted cereal in these containers and put those on a low shelf of the pantry so they could go downstairs in the mornings and prepare themselves breakfast. I also cut/wash fruit and place in little containers for them in the fridge. It’s interesting what a change this small adaptation has made in our mornings. Our children no longer hum around our bedroom door asking for breakfast, and we find that they are much more likely to trot off and play independently. I also scheduled a mommy-daughter date for the end of this week — going to take her to the mall to pick out some fall clothes! I’ve found that if I don’t involve her in the clothing selection process, beautiful articles of clothes languish in her closet, never-to-be-worn. Sigh. I figure taking her to a handful of stores whose clothes I like (going to try Gap, Zara, and J. Crew) will be a good way to engage her with guardrails up.
A couple of my favorite recent buys for the children — mostly related to school! —
01. MAYFLY AND JUNEBUG PERSONALIZED PLATES — Going to surprise my children with these on their first day of school!
02. PIP POP POST EARRINGS — My daughter’s been asking for her ears to be pierced for a year now. We’re planning to take her as a surprise before the first day of school. I am going to let her pick a pair from this cute brand, Pip Pop Post, after she has them done!
03. YETI RAMBLERS — My children’s favorite water bottles. Decided to buy them a second one apiece for the school year. They are virtually indestructible, do not leak, and keep water very cold. I loved their limited edition colors!
04. WEEKLY NOTEPAD — Going to use this solely for my children’s planning / activities / play dates / meal plan / etc
05. VINYL LETTER STICKERS — Another tool in my arsenal for marking/tagging my children’s belongings.
06. BAG TAG — Had to replace her old one, which was all bent, scratched, and beat up! Love the colors of this.
07. J. CREW STRIPED SWEATER — Couldn’t resist!
08. SOCKS — Just bought a ton of new sets. Like to have them looking fresh for the school year.
09. B. BOX SNACK BOXES — Ordered a few of these for snacktime. We’ve used Yumbox’s snack size in the past but I find them annoying to wash/dry, and they are pricey! These are almost half the price. They’re a really petite size — great for snacks for young kids — and I really like having these kinds of tupperware on hand because they dramatically reduce the amount of single-use plastic/wrappers we throw out. SO easy to decant a bigger bag of goldfish / cut fruit into these. Great colors, too.
10. NEW BALANCE 574 VELCRO SNEAKS — I mentioned these a few weeks ago but these will be my son’s everyday preschool kicks! He’s supposed to wear sneakers with his uniform as a pre-K-er!
In My Fashion Life…
I have to brag about this incredible $59 purse find. It is such a cool greige color and looks much more expensive than $59. It is not leather but has a pebbled/textured exterior that makes it look like it could be, and the hardware is a good quality (I often find the hardware is a dead giveaway for price). I have grown to love this size/shape of bag for things like coffee runs, school drop-off, quick solo errands, etc — times when I only need my phone, card case, and key. Anyhow, I love this little bag and think you will, too. I’m also smitten with this unbelievable fall buy from Talbots — a $119 textured cardi. As of time of publishing this, it is 25% off.
Below are the makings of a great fall fashion uniform — the kinds of pieces I throw together when I have nothing major on the calendar, just the usual drop-off, errand or two, time at my desk, etc. Comfortable but pulled together. The exact nubby white cardigan I’m wearing below is from Talbots (!) and a great price — $119. I gasped when I saw it! It comes in a few other colors, too. It’s a great way to get the BA&SH look for less, and the length is maybe even better? The jeans I’m wearing below are Agolde’s Riley Crops. They’ve become my absolute favorite everyday jeans. Contemporary shape but not too trendy. I was skeptical at first because of the button fly (I hate a button fly) but these feel great on and are worth the extra few seconds when using the facilities. I went a size up from my true size and they’re a touch big but I don’t hate the slight bagginess? They feel lived-in. (They’re also zero-stretch so would rather err on the side of comfort.) The last note I want to offer: I cannot WAIT For these SLVRLAKE jeans to arrive. I’ve been eyeing this brand for several seasons and specifically was drawn to the brown stitching on these white jeans as a great way to transition white jeans into fall. (I also like that they have a raw hem as I will almost assuredly need to cut them myself — I’m short! 5’0.) The other pair of SLVRLAKEs I’ve been wanting to buy for a long time are their London jeans. I LOVE the way they fit on the model but find the sizing baffling — have read in some places they run TTS but the model is wearing two sizes up from her reported waist size? So I figure I’ll give the Grace ones a try and see what I think. Any intel?
AMAZON PURSE // TALBOTS TEXTURED CARDIGAN // TEXTURED CARDIGAN IN COLLAGE // AGOLDE RILEYS // PARIS SWEATSHIRT // DORSEY HEART NECKLACE // ADIDAS SAMBAS // VERONICA BEARD FERAZIA BLAZER // CHANEL FLATS
In My Intellectual Life…
Absolutely loving Ann Patchett’s Tom Lake. I’m actually toggling between listening (it’s narrated perfectly by Meryl Streep) on Audible and reading on my Kindle. I’d never done this before but it’s kind of incredible how well it works — Kindle/Audible will jump to where you left off on the other device, and it’s seamless and so easy. Will write a full review but am savoring every moment.
On film, we watched part of a kitschy Japanese movie from the 80s called “Tampopo” (currently halfway through), which is ostensibly about a widowed woman who is trying to figure out how to successfully run a ramen restaurant with the help of two truck drivers she happens to encounter. It’s an interesting blend of genres, and there’s a strong element of classic American Western cinema involved, with scenes that recreate classic saloon moments, hijinks set to ragtime piano, etc. It seems to be interested thematically in cultural overlap, “crossing,” adaptations, etc., as there are many scenes in which Japanese are learning to adopt American customs — usually to comedic effect. It’s strange and smart, and I have a sense I’ll be unpacking it for weeks.
In My Food Life…
Lots of fabulous eats this week, and we’ve especially been enjoying the fruits of Landon’s garden (and his related labors). Nearly all the grilled veg seen below came from his garden, herbs included! He dressed them in a garlic vinaigrette — divine.
We hosted a neighborhood happy hour last Friday and kept everything very simple. Light snacks, aperol spritz station, and beer/wine. For snacks, I have to say that one of my favorite lowkey elegant things to serve: mini toasts with a hunk of Manchego and membrillo (quince paste) on top. You can buy all the ingredients at Whole Foods. It’s the perfect salty-sweet one-bite app. Two other random tips: 1) buy these plastic reusable cups for events like this. We then run through the dishwasher and reuse next time. So much less waste! Plus, they’re plastic (unbreakable) so appropriate for outdoors / lots of kids and they’re not so precious that you’ll mind if one goes missing. 2) I had several guests ask where I’d bought the olives I served, and they were just from Whole Foods BUT I’d drizzled with really fancy olive oil and left out at room temp for awhile. It makes a world of difference!
How was your week?
P.S. I also served this addictive snack at the happy hour! If I’d had more time, I would have made this great party dish, but we were really short on free time last week since we’d traveled the week before.
P.P.S. Notes on hosting friends at home.
P.P.P.S. More fall fashion finds.