a friend introduced me to this incredible facebook page you have to “like” instantly. it is the most unique facebook page i’ve ever encountered. and that is saying a lot. you have to have a little bit of an artsy point of view to get it. it’s called HUMANS OF NEW YORK. it’s actually a blog that you can find here.
snapping pictures, getting a blurb and moving on. these are amazing and really make you realize how small you are and how big and beautiful the world is. watch his story:
here is a sample of what comes into my feed:
when i think of flannel, i typically think of plaid. and i think of…
ah, eddie vedder. hand’s down, my generation has the best music ever. but that is not what this post is about. it’s all about flannel + plaid. two things that have fall written all over them. tell me you don’t have a big ole flannel shirt with the arms rolled up that captures all the outdoorsy smells of bonfires, grilling, wet leaves and still holds out the chill in the air perfectly?
here are some items that are also trying to get into the plaid and/or flannel state of mind:
like this fantastic iphone cover by jake spade, a smashing bowtie by the kozie canine, a vintage poncho from freepeople that is no longer available but they have loads of hippie fantastic clothes, these flannel scrunchy boots i’m coveting and a plaid flannel infinity scarf that is sure to brighten up any old black winter coat.
how about some more? you can’t talk flannel without talking plaid and vice versa. quite honestly, i’m even thinking they are one in the same which they most certainly are not. something can be plaid or it can be flannel but most flannels are plaid. sigh. this sure beats thinking about all the work i have to do.
here is a website, you’re sure to dig. i love the name of it. toast. already without looking, you are going to be able to tell that it is crunchy, warm, buttery and scrumptious. go ahead and peek. i’ll give you a glimpse.
salt + caramel = 2 things that go together like soni+cher, peanut butter + jelly and vodka + lemons. after pumpkin, the one thing that says ‘fall’ is salted caramel.
there is just something about the sweet + salty togetherness that when you mix it with the background of falling red leaves, crisp temperatures and crackling fire it all says – home to me.
pinterest + I curated some tasty recipes for you. from a martini to popcorn to rice krispie treats. all of the great blogs and recipes can be found here.
top left to right: salted caramel pretzel brownies, salted caramel bark
salted caramel pb cups and bailey’s salted caramel chocolate pie
from top left to right: salted caramel macarons, popcorn,
brownies with SC filling and rice krispie treats.
the recipe from ministry of alcohol’s website
2 parts stoli salted karamel
3 parts apple juice
how easy is that? (to quote my favorite cook)
not in a smart, know-it-all kind of way. it’s just a result of age. i feel wise because, for me, i’ve may have figured it out. priorities. you know when you are in your 20s and 30s (at least 4 me) i kind of - how do you say - worked my ass off. i was single focused on:
finding out what the expectations are and exceeding them. from my boss, from my clients even from my friends. some call that being a people-pleaser and i wouldn’t disagree but i’d add to that definition. i would call it being driven.
and that changed as i grew up. in my 20s, when i started to wonder about the bigger things in life like “where do you go when you die?” and “is this all for nothing” and “is this world really all about… just us?” i dug into all kinds of spiritual things and spun out in a place of faith where i know is the right place to be. but the point here isn’t that – it’s that what i started to be driven towards changed and grew.
but now, in my 40s i’ve started to question the engine that is driving me. i go back to the place i’ll call my eye opening moment. my dad’s funeral. you can read about that here. it was when all the work folks poured in and dealers from all over the country filled the room and i thought to myself THIS IS WHERE YOU END UP! all your stress and your voicemails and emails and strategy – you end up here.
so i came up with my own priorities that i thought about and spelled out and think about now – at least for the past week since I made them up. i am going to run everything through this and it will tell me how worried to get about something or stressed or even happy for that matter.
this is my new driver. first God. not my version of God. to each their own, but i know my God. it is the God of the bible and the one you only can know through Jesus. that is most important to me because it puts me on track and is more than just this life.
second is a combo meal. it is health and love. health has never ever been on my radar. i would say my priorities for the most part of my life have been more in this order: 1. work 2. love & feel good. not anymore. i’ve got a functional medicine nutritionist and i’m working the simple plan. striving for a life change and for paris!
love is ROF and my friends and family. if i don’t have my health, i won’t have them and they won’t have me. like peas in a pod. and they mean the world to me. more than work and feeling good and anything else.
third is work. and this is key. this is what i run the most through my stress gauge now. does it affect my relationship with God? am i putting work before God and health and love? yes? then something is off.
we’ll see how this works out but right now, i’m feeling great. now off for a beautiful sunday with ROF driving in JWK (old car) to a car show.
this is JWK:
what is your priority filter? i’d love to know - please share!
so this brief blog post is to say that i appreciate the fantastic guy who works in our building downstairs who holds the door kindly for all of us leaving the building around 6pm – 7pm. the door locks so he does this so we don’t have to fish for our keys. he’s an older, balding type with happy eyes and is always so kind and friendly. last night’s interaction went like this:
“how you doin’ tonight?” (nice man holding door)
“i’m doin’ fine, thank you!” (me, all pooped from a long day)
“i know you’re fine, but HOW YA DOIN’?” (he yells as i round the corner)
i laughed all the way in the elevator and into my car. (this was not a cheesy interaction but a nice, funny one).
last night ROF and i watched movie # 25 on our quest to watch the A.F.I (american film institute) top 100 movies. we have been working our way to #1 and it has taken us about 3 years now. you can read about our journey here.
the #25 movie was E.T. i haven’t seen E.T. since i was 12 years old in the movie theatre in grand blanc, michigan. i remember crying my eyes out. this movie is a great movie on so many different levels. watching it as a 43 year old, i notice the similarities of life and especially how it paralleled my own just this past week. E.T. was a stranger. someone that didn’t fit it. someone that wasn’t wearing yoga pants and carrying a louis vuitton bag. E.T. was odd at first and sweet just after a few moments of getting to know him. he was scary and odd to adults, but to kids he was a friend and someone they wanted to help.
a week ago today, we put our beloved english bulldog, max, to rest. he was suffering, in pain and not happy. boy, did we love that dog. at first you may be thinking that i’m going to make a deep correlation between loving a pet and what happened in E.T. and you’d be right. but actually, max was just like E.T. physically. grunting, whining, waddling to get a scrap and he ate like a pig. best dog in the world.
i didn’t understand good-bye forever. at 43, i know how that feels now. not just because of max, but because of wrigley, my lab that my brother had to put down just a few weeks before max, because of losing my dad too early and losing some friends. watching E.T. puts that feeling into a short, well-written movie. it’s about being open enough to welcome someone new and, maybe, different into your life, loving them, teaching them, learning from them and then letting them go. they are not ours to keep. nothing is ours. be thankful for every minute of every day you have them. then give them back to God.
but i didn’t always. i inherited my dad’s massively short attention span. for those of you that like my presentation skills in front of car dealers, it’s because i try to present to people like me. keep it short, keep it entertaining, keep it passionate. now… i’m not bragging about my inability to concentrate. it actually causes me a great deal of stress.
back to rush hour. so at 43 years old, i have NEVER had to be in rush hour. never. in chicago, i walked to work. in dallas, i lived 10 minutes from work but now that i’m in birmingham, i have a 30 – 45 minute commute. at first i hated it. because of my short attention span, i can’t listen to a song in it’s entirety on the radio. so i’m flipping and flipping and pretty frustrated. some like making phone calls, some dictate emails into their iphones and some juggle eating an egg white mcmuffin, green tea and applying make-up. but not moi. i prefer jamming good tunes.
and I found the cure. on a free app called mixcloud. here is where famous and not famous djs spin on-going tunage. having a dj spin music cures my need to turn the song after the first few seconds. i have full on worn out colin peter’s mix with nile rodgers. nile rodgers was in chic and is madonna’s inspiration. in fact, she opens up the mix. nothing like a little daft punk with carly simon and donna summer.
if you even were next to me on my drive down to work, you’d crack up. and be a little embarrassed for me.
it’s not normal for me to rant on my blog called “the appreciator” but i feel like it. and it’s my blog.
especially in this modern day communication via email, i notice that people say “thank you” when they really aren’t saying thank you for anything at all. like the entire email is one big to-do list for you and at the bottom is “thank you!” for what? reading my diatribe?
the worst offender is the one that populates their signature with the word “THANKS!” which means that they could be ripping you a new one in the email but don’t forget that i added “THANKS!” to the end of the email so now we’re all good and i’m really a nice person.
really annoying. there. i’m done ranting.
ROF and i are embracing the michigan lifestyle and this includes going “up north”. if you don’t know what that is, check out this video:
we’re slightly crazy about it and are thinking of renting a cabin for the summer next year. if you’re not familiar with michigan
it’s surrounded by big, glistening lakes. you have no idea how unbelievably beautiful this state is. if you don’t believe me, believe chef mario batali
anyway, all this thinking and dreaming of a lake house made me dig around on houzz to research my dream place. what i found was my ultimate michigan barn.
this was designed by northworks architects and planners out of chicago, il. this place is my idea of a getaway!
you can see more on my cabin fever page on houzz here