Weekend Vibes

Weekend Vibes, Edition No. 66: What Are You Rebelling Against?

By: Jen Shoop

My Latest Score: The Apple Homepod.

We recently bought an Apple Homepod for our kitchen, and we are OBSESSED.  We had an incredible Sonos sound system installed throughout our old house (speakers in the ceiling of nearly every room, as well as in our backyard and our roof!), and have been missing the omnipresence of music in our new apartment.  We listen to music through our TV, as Mr. Magpie bought a bunch of fancy Kef speakers to outfit the TV, but you can’t hear it well from our galley kitchen.  When Apple released its latest operating system, it suddenly became possible to play music simultaneously through your Apple TV and any other devices — so BOOM!  We were sold on the Homepod, as it meant we could project whatever was playing in the living area in the kitchen.  I’m in love.  While I’m cooking in the kitchen, I can say: “Hey Siri, play Kacey Musgraves,” or “Hey Siri, turn down the music,” or “Hey Siri, what time is it?” — totally hands-free.  The quality of sound is incredible, too.  The Homepod is something of a gateway drug, though, because it led Mr. Magpie to upgrade our lighting system with the new Hue bridge (we had an older one that didn’t play well with the new Apple operating systems) and to finish installing Hue bulbs in all of the lamps of our house, so we can now tell the Homepod: “Hey Siri, turn out the bedroom lights,” or “Hey Siri, dim the living room lights,” or — BEST OF ALL — as I’m leaving the apartment — “Hey Siri, turn off all the lights.”

That is some next level Jetsons wizardry.

(And you should get yourself some of it.)

You’re Sooooo Popular: The Vintage Snag.

The most popular items on Le Blog this week:

+Vintage Hermes scarves — an extra 20% off right now!  (Or, get the look for less.)

+The most perfect swimsuit.

+Get that designer vacay look for less.

+Mini’s go-to “party” shoes.

+Adorable summer dress.

+The book everyone seems to be reading RN.

+A super chic eyelet top that looks a lot like Zimmermann but costs $59.

+The absolute perfect floral dress.

+Adorable Lilly bow for a mini.

#Turbothot: What Are You Rebelling Against?

One of my sisters always has incredible conversation-starters at the ready when we’re sitting around in the living room, some of us on the floor and others of us on the couches, or lingering over plates of dessert and glasses of wine at the dining room table.  Most recently, on night four of our family reunion, as our conversation about the virtues of Taylor Swift’s “Delicate” dwindled, without missing a beat, she straightened up and asked: “What thing are you rebelling against right now in your life?”  We all sat there, puzzling over the inquiry, for a few minutes.  I said something about my self-imposed rules, as I’ve been thinking about them a lot since my musings on “keeping curfew” the other day.  But I’m not sure that’s it, on reflection; it takes effort, mindfulness for me to break out of my routines and rules because I generally prefer order and schedule to the willy nilly.  So, I suppose I do rebel against them when I have the mental space to do so, or when I feel like I need it, but I’m not in active rebellion against my habits and rituals in any consistent way.

Rebellion is a strong word, but I am absolutely engaged in a weird tango with some of the personas I find myself occupying as a new mom.  Let me explain: I can talk about strollers and high chairs until the cows come home (and I have), but — have you ever been sitting at a table or in a playgroup with four or five other mothers and you realize that the only thing you’ve spoken about for the last hour plus is baby gear, or sleep schedules, or what you’re feeding your child and why?  And this little rogue part of you recoils?  And you suddenly cordon yourself off, mentally, from that conversation, insistent that there are other things to talk about and that you aren’t going to be that mom who talks about her kids all the time?  That’s me.  And I’m aware that my internal flinching is an unattractive look, because it suggests that I’m in some way above those conversations, which I’m absolutely not, as I spend enormous swathes of time researching baby gear, obsessing over my daughter, and documenting both here.  Plus, all moms spend so much time preening and caring after their children, and they need an outlet to share their observations and anxieties — so who am I to suddenly withdraw, feeling as though the conversation has gone on for too long?  It’s untoward.

And yet.

There’s that impish alter-ego that pops out around minute 49 of baby talk, and I find myself thinking: “Who am I?!  How am I sitting here talking about the merits of my travel carseat?  QUICK!  CHANGE THE SUBJECT!  Talk about something pertinent to world affairs or the book you’re reading or…well, anything you might have spoken about pre-baby!”

In other words, if I’m honest, I think I find myself rebelling inwardly against some of the motherly personas I inhabit.

What about you?  What are you rebelling against?

#Shopaholic: The Perfume.

+I wore Coco Chanel Mademoiselle through most of college and my grad school years.  I’d forgotten about it until I turned a page in Bazaar and sniffed the little flap enclosed in its advertisement.  I was taken back — and in a happy way.  I think I’ll by myself a new bottle.

+This is absolutely adorable.  It looks sort of like DVF or Draper James — but without the pricetag.

+Great sale going on at TB — I love this dress.

+No longer just available for pre-order!

+Janie + Jack just launched a limited selection of Liberty London pieces, and I’m loving this!

+Currently reading this and am actually very impressed with the writing.  Someone had said that Sittenfeld is just OK but some of the observations that emanate from her protagonist are deeply true to life and well-put.  The beginning is a bit slow-going, but I’m pot-committed now.

+Reese Witherspoon just raved about this book, so I’m sure it’s going to be a smash hit.

+OK, but these are really cute.

+RMS now has eye polish?!?!?!?

P.S.  What does your perfect day look like?

P.P.S.  How I really feel about being a mom.

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13 thoughts on “Weekend Vibes, Edition No. 66: What Are You Rebelling Against?

  1. Curtis Sittenfeld is one of my favorite authors–I just finished her short story collection, “You Think It, I’ll Say It” and really enjoyed it. “American Wife” is likely my favorite of her books, but “Prep” really appealed to my teenage self (I found the protagonist quite relatable) and “Eligible”, based on “Pride and Prejudice”, is a fun read. Enjoy! I love hearing your book reviews and recommendations!

      1. Yay! I’ve read Eligible, too — I much prefer “American Wife,” and am totally bowled over by the writing! I feel that the way she expresses very common but not-often-mentioned emotions (within marriages, friendships, family relationships) is deeply relatable. I feel like she’s writing what I’ve felt! Thanks for sharing; I might read “Prep” after, which I’ve never read before! xo

  2. Curtis Sittenfeld is one of my favorite authors–I just finished her short story collection, “You Think It, I’ll Say It” and really enjoyed it. “American Wife” is likely my favorite of her books, but “Prep” really appealed to my teenage self (I found the protagonist quite relatable) and “Eligible”, based on “Pride and Prejudice”, is a fun read. Enjoy!

  3. So many good thoughts here! Love the question of rebellion – as someone who respects authority to a fault, this is a tough one. I’ve been struggling with how to obey my parents as a full-grown adult, and have rebelling against the “Sunday phone call check-in.” Yes, I had these with my parents, but mostly when I lived on the opposite coast. Now, that I’m back east and in the throes of mid-career, I not only find these phone calls hard to pull off every week, I find them down-right annoying. So, I’m trying to force my parents to a) call ME when they need to talk and b) do it whenever they feel like it, not just on Sundays. But this has been met with some resistance, and a few guilt-trips along the way. Ah, adulting 😉

    I’ve been totally intrigued by the HomePod, and in the connected home in general. I used to work for HARMAN, who owns brands like JBL and Harman Kardon, so I have a lot of speakers and sound bars around, haha. Not that I am making full use of them, which needs to happen after I move (again, yay….).

    As for scents, I am completely non-committal, but dream of having a “signature” scent one day. It feels hard to prioritize spritzing on perfume when you’re running out the door, and as someone sensitive to smells, I am always afraid of annoying someone who doesn’t share my taste in fragrance. Pretty sure I overthink everything, ha! I guess that’s the point of the Turbothot!

    1. Hi April – It’s so interesting you bring up parent-child relationships as an adult because the book I’m currently reading, Curtis Sittenfeld’s “American Wife” touches upon this and dutifulness in relationships more generally, and I think she has some interesting takeaways, or at least her protagonist’s experience of them resonated with me. I can imagine a scheduled phone call would be burdensome after a time…!

      P.S. Overthinkers unite!

  4. My boyfriend & I are Sonos people as well, but the HomePod has me intrigued! I signed up for Apple Music about 6 months ago and have been loving it … really, I’m just an Apple person.

    I love your conversation prompt about rebelling. I can’t decide what I am rebelling against, probably because I, like you, tend to be a rule/schedule follower! Ha.

    Love these conversations about scent memory … I’ve always believed in it and can break down my life by what scent I wore during specific periods: CK One (middle school); Lolita Lempicka (high school); Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue (college); Marc Jacobs original (immediately post-college); Stella; about 3 different MCMC fragrances; and now Debaser by DS & Durga. Siiiigh!

    1. Hi MK – You know, maybe you aren’t rebelling against ANYTHING, which would be a cool self-affirmation, meaning that you are in some sort of equilibrium with the shape of things in your life!

      We’re also total Apple geeks. I LOVE Apple Music. My sister has beef with their playlists; she complains that they repeat the same songs ad nauseum, and I have to be honest in that I’ve noticed the same thing, but I wouldn’t have noticed because I’ve never had a point of comparison; she’s a die-hard Spotify-er, and apparently their playlists are Le Best. But I typically use Apple to turn on a specific musician — “play Kacey Musgraves,” “play Madeleine Peyroux,” etc., and I love it.


  5. I was just talking about how crazy the scent/memory connection is and walking down the memory lane of various signature perfumes I’ve worn over the years (I’ve been wearing the same perfume for more than a decade – Stella — so mine is a short list).

    Anyway, if you’re a girl of a certain age you probably know exactly what I’m talking about when I say heaven….dream….grass…the Gap perfumes! I wore heaven for a few years in college and I can still remember spraying great clouds of it before running to class, getting ready for a big night out, etc. Eventually it became too linked in my mind with a senior year relationship that ended badly and I stopped wearing it, but I found myself trolling eBay the other day looking to pick up a bottle. I don’t know that I’d wear it (but maybe I would…?), but it would be a nice way to get a quick hit of nostalgia.

    1. That is SO funny – I absolutely remember the Gap scents! My sister was big into them, especially Dream. I was a Clinique Happy girl, though — if I catch a whiff I’m instantly back in high school. I switched to Ralph Lauren Romance just before college (wore it the day I met my husband!) and that, too, is a heady with nostalgia for me when I cross paths with it…thanks for taking me on this trip down memory lane! xo

  6. This post made me simultaneously so excited for the great question and so jealous of your incredible family.

    My rebellion is labels, I think similar to yours— who AM I? Am I the “uncool” mom who never has a mani pedi? Well that’s because I’m “above” it, I have better things to think about… NO I DONT! I wish I was put together like I used to be!

    So funny, because I was thinking about your post as a “part time SAHM”, which is how I also view myself. I realized: why do we diminish our labels? I am a BombAss Doctor even though I’m not doing it in the traditional 80+ hours a week sense any more, and you are a BombAss Writer (ha— write at home mom!!!), even if you aren’t running your other business anymore.

    See this is why I had to start my own blog! I take up too much space on yours!!! Anyways, hope to see you there tomorrow 🙂


    1. You are so right about the labels and self-diminishment: I’m always quick to say “I’m a part-time…” and “I’m dabbling in…” and “I run a little blog…” Enough!


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