Well, summer is winding down and everyone is starting to prepare for a new school year and preparing head first to tackle fall. Whattt? What. BUT if you haven’t seen my big announcement yet about what I am doing right this moment, definitely go check it out here. You can also see more day to day stuff on my Instagram page. Current location? Alexandria, Virginia, which I am LOVING. I'll post an update on that sometime soon, once I am organized enough to get all my thoughts together. In the past couple weeks I've been to about 10 states. I can't even believe that one.
Yesterday was Dani from Care to Pair's birthday. Go check out her blog, and then wish her a very Happy Birthday. :) HAPPY BIRTHDAY DANI! I will drink all the drinks for you.
Right before I left, Swell Caroline was so kind enough to send me one of their necklaces, and they totally customized it for me. Rose gold and monograms together makes me swoon, and I have been getting a ton of compliments about it. They have everything from statement necklaces to preppy earrings to delicate, bespoken pieces. Swell Caroline, can you send me everything? Kthanks <3 Definitely go check them out.
My absolute favorite breakfast these days, even in the midst of traveling, has been high quality eggs over lightly sautéed greens. SO easy and so healthy.
I’ve found myself reading a lot this summer, and have been though a ton of books, even now as I am on the road- there is just something about reading that is so relaxing. I read The Girl on the Train in probably 10 hours, Still Alice in a couple days, and A Spool of Blue Thread in the course of a week. I recently bought Station Eleven, so I’m excited to give that one a go. Anyone have any good book recommendations??
I was SO sad to leave my garden. This was my first year of vegetable gardening, and I did get a good run. I know my tomatoes and zucchinis and peppers will still produce well into fall, so my neighbors will definitely get to enjoy those ones. This year, I enjoyed a few different kinds of tomatoes, zucchini, carrots, and herbs. A tiny little butternut squash was just starting to grow right before I left too. It was adorable. I planted the butternut back in May- I know butternut squash is fall produce, but for some reason, I thought that if I planted it really early, it would grow faster. Silly me, mother-nature knows best.
Speaking or gardening, can we all agree how amazing it is that France banned Roundup? Can the U.S. do the same thing soon please? Likely, this will never happen, not with all the politics surrounding this hot topic. That can be a whole rant in itself.
Lately, I’ve moved away from CrossFit and have been doing more yoga. Don’t get me wrong, CrossFit continues to be the best workouts of my life, and has given me more muscle tone, strength, and cardiovascular fitness than anything else, including training for half marathons. (Crazy, right?) Right now, however, I just feel that I need to focus on a workout that allows me to foster the mind-body relationship, so I’ve been doing more yoga, which has been great. I’ve done yoga on and off since I was 14 (That’s 13 years of yoga!). Wow, time flies.
I’ve been obsessing over Stitchfix, which for those of you that don’t know, is a service that sends you 5 pieces of clothing in your size, styled by a stylist. They also send you illustration cards showing how to wear your pieces. Anything you don’t want, you send back, and it is my new favorite way to shop. Stitchfix recently found me my new favorite pair of distressed boyfriend jeans, and I am shocked that a complete stranger found me jeans that fit like a glove when I feel like I can’t even find jeans that fit me well myself. Bravo, Stitchfix! If anyone is interested in trying the service out, I definitely recommend it.
As many of you wisely pointed out, I started KonMari-ing my house well before we decided to move. You guys definitely knew that something was going on before I even announced it. (Well done!) The whole idea was that we needed to downsize enough to be able to put things into storage, and to ensure that this rather strange we are doing runs as smoothly as possible.
The whole idea of KonMari is to de-clutter and rid of excess by discarding things that don’t spark joy. This method worked really well when going through things like paperwork and old electronics and a drawer (literally, a whole drawer, whyyyy?) of pens and scissors, but I struggled with my kitchen. Of course, I spend a lot of time in cooking. I really struggled with the difference between “sparking joy” and functionality with kitchen objects. For example, my food processor doesn’t necessarily spark joy, but do I use it? Yes, all the time. Same goes for things like my grater and baking pans. They don’t spark joy but I sure do use them on a weekly basis. In the end, however, I decided that it was time to get rid of some cookware and dishes I had been holding onto since college. I bought them on a college budget, and for as much cooking as I do, its time to give myself an upgrade. I also got rid of a lot of multiples- there truly is no reason to have 6 wooden spoons and 5 baking sheets. If there ever is a situation in the future where I need 5 baking sheets at once, I will borrow them from a neighbor.
There has been a TON of research and media attention towards gut health, bacteria colonies, and overall health lately. New research has been emerging linking the health of our digestive tract to weight loss, circadian rhythms, longevity, disease prevention, acne, etc. Seemingly, it looks like even more of our overall health is being linked to the bacteria in our bodies. However, a lot is now being said about the link between digestive health and mood, i.e. depression, anxiety, happiness. There is a really great article in the NYT about it here, and I highly suggest you go read it. I am so amazed by this new science; I am hoping that this means someday targeting mental health and mood disorders will be through a holistic, natural approach. Maybe one of these days I'll go into the probiotics I take and the fermented foods I eat.
I know I am approximately 9 years late on this trend, but omg RHONY. Due to my disappointment with the Bachelorette this season, it was only a matter of time until I gravitated towards a different reality show. But a retro reality show was never on my radar. (Retro reality TV? Is that a thing? It is now.) But then I got Hulu and started on Season 1 and was sucked in. Alex and Simon are weirdos. Ramona is crazy. And I have 9 years of internet gossip to back up my instincts.
If you haven’t been keeping up on my recent recipes, there have been really great summer recipes here on South of Vanilla. I am far too lazy to link them to you right now, since I’m doing this from my ipad, but you can navigate to them through the little calendar to the right of this post. So you can, you know, #gomakethemrightnow. Or something.
I will keep everyone updated on my travels and progress- I am in the midst of drafting a little summary of what I have done so far, so I will keep you posted!
Have a great rest of your weekend and I hope you have a wonderful week ahead, but of course, I've included some other great shots below of my last adventures in New Mexico.