Week Links [5 July]

Good morning! I’ve made an extremely controversial decision and started writing the date the British way, because (I capitulate) it makes more sense and is more aesthetically pleasing. This, from the same woman who changed her iPhone to 24-hour time in England and was perpetually confused for 3 weeks. Don’t worry, I’m not conceding in the aluminum vs. aluminium debate. Also, what a fuck-you thing to do on “Independence Day” weekend, innit?

Anyway, it’s been a big week for culture, so let’s get to it:

oh the cleverness of you — Adele Dazeem™ at the 92nd Academy ...

    1. The most important thing that has ever happened in my entire life happened this week, and it’s the TRILOGY of Las Culturistas “Top 200 Moments in Culture History.” It has moved me. It has shaped me. I laughed, I cried, I screamed, I gasped.
    2. Miel’s album is coming out on 22 July and we simply have to stan! Her new single, “Must Be Fine” is avail to stream on Spotify right now!
    3. The last thing I need is an excuse to drink, but I love a lemon drop.
    4. I finally got the crossbody of my dreams for a ridiculous price. Call me basic all you want, but it’s a classic MJ shape. One day I will have the finances to justify a full-price, current season, actual Marc Jacobs bag, but today is not that day. Okay okay okay, maybe I also got this one too, but literally how could I not at that price??
    5. I got this moisturizer in my Causebox and I really like it. It’s super lightweight, smells great, and has SPF 30. I also got this serum, which I haven’t tried yet, but apparently I’m supposed to be using hyaluronic acid all the time now? All of my products seem to have it. I guess 28 is old in skincare years.
    6. Currently binge-eating these lentil chips, and concerned about the subscription option…quitting wheat (based on my Everlywell results) has been a journey!
    7. Please don’t judge me for the particular retailer, but I may have gotten this case set for my new MacBook, and this ergonomic mousepad set for my work computer. Between the computer, my phone case, and my ribcage tattoo, I am way, way too on brand. Perhaps next is just blowing this print up and hanging it in my office?
    8. Love these earrings from TalkUniqueDesigns on Etsy.
    9. I read The Cactus by Sarah Haywood this week and in spite of myself, really liked it. The Eleanor Oliphant comparison is apt; they both have wildly unlikable protagonists. Like, truly, awful people you’d never want to be around. I will say, I think Susan’s about-face is a tad abrupt (I know motherhood is a moment, but like, probably try therapy instead of having a baby).
    10. We finally set up our AppleTV (and by we, I mean my husband bought it off a friend over a year ago and it sat unused in his office, until I got frustrated attempting to screen mirror with our TV on Friday and set it up), so we will be using that to watch Hamilton on Disney+ (which we have a year free trial of through our mobile provider).
    11. Speaking of D+, anyone else just counting down the minutes until Black Is King?
    12. Save Stereogum.

au revoir, les enfants

-c

Sunday Scaries: Father’s Day, I Guess?

Morning! From the title, it may seem like I’m ambivalent about my father (hardly the case), but I am deeply ambivalent about “Hallmark holidays,” because I am a joyless person. Mother’s/Father’s Day just feels like a marketing scheme for bougie brunch places, my favorite of all the places that I’d prefer not be clogged with toddlers while I’m trying to enjoy my mimosa. See? Joyless! And now I’ve made myself crave a mimosa, though I have neither orange juice nor sparkling wine. Chardonnay and lemonade? Y/N? (I’m writing this on Saturday morning, so it’s not out of the question that I may nip off to the store.)

Speaking of the store, I still haven’t returned to grocery shopping, but I plan to resume in the very near future. I have gone to Target briefly a couple of times. I hate wearing the mask—it gives me so much anxiety and for some reason, I clench my jaw really tightly underneath. Is that a thing? But obviously, as I’m not a MORON WHO DOESN’T CARE ABOUT OTHER PEOPLE, I rock a mask 100% of the time I’m out in public. Which brings me to my next gripe:

People BE going to restaurants with outdoor seating and not wearing masks! What the actual hell? I have been isolated in my house for 100 days! Do you know how emotionally difficult that is for someone with depression? I’m simultaneously living my best and worst lives, missing my friends and family, for what? So that a few absolute knobs can cause a spike in infections that keeps us home until I’m in my mid-thirties? Absolutely not! I haven’t been able to get my teeth cleaned or my glasses prescription updated, but you can have fried clams overlooking the beach? Please eject yourselves into the sea.

Have I complained sufficiently? Haha, it feels good to be back on this, my public private place to talk to myself.

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source: printsandgiggles on etsy
  1. This piece about self-love by Aisha Mirza is really moving.
  2. Eric Andre’s new special drops Tuesday and I couldn’t be more excited. If you want a teaser, check him out on Good One: A Podcast About Jokes.
  3. This leather goods shop on Etsy is magical. Please give me one of everything, and please do not lecture me about the ethics of leather.
  4. I might actually die without a pair of hammered hoops from The Pink Locket!
  5. I found SPF 110, baby! I didn’t even know they made SPF higher than 100, but I was rewarded for my diligence! The sun can actually try to burn me! I’m using this face sunscreen, this body sunscreen, and this SPF 50 daily moisturizer.
  6. Speaking of my delicate skin, unable as it is to produce melanin, I have given myself over to the gods of Curology. A friend recommended it to me, as my prior attempts at skincare consisted of occasionally using an oil cleanser and forgetting to take my eye makeup off at night. It’s only been three days, so I’m not seeing a visible difference, but my skin feels really soft and I’ve actually started to maintain a nightly skincare ritual, which is a small miracle.
  7. Speaking of custom products designed specifically for me, I also caved and ordered Prose. I heat process my hair twice a week (or so) to varying degrees, I dye it, and my hair is naturally very curly and dry, so I’m giving actually taking care of it a go. I went all in and ordered the oil too, because why not? I truly can’t believe it took until I started going gray for me to actually give a shit about taking care of my hair, but there’s no sense in dwelling on the past.
  8. I have tentatively begun home workouts. I have a legitimate phobia of exercise or movement generally (I legitimately talk about this in therapy, it’s a long story). I have sobbed in gym parking lots, unable to walk in. I successfully completed this video without having a panic attack, so I’m going to see what else Miss Adriene has to offer. I’d really like to check out some body-positive yogis, so plz lemme know whomst to Google. I’m not averse to a paywall!
  9. Gonna have to purchase that one.
  10. Even though it’s 14,000 degrees out, I was in the mood for a really big Cab the other day, so I tried out Bread & Butter‘s. When I drink reds, I tend to like them less bold, like Pinot Noirs, but I began my wine journey as a Cab girl and I’ve gotta honor my roots! Also, we’re chilling our red wines, right? The hill I will die on is that we all drink whites too cold and reds way too warm.
  11. We finally bought *actually good* Bluetooth speakers and it has been a game changer. We got this one for me (super portable!) and this one for our house. In addition to awesome sound quality, they’re such fun pops of color against our mostly black-and-white decor. And big bonus, they have a “party mode,” so you can play music from both of them at the same time. Surround-sound!
  12. I’ve been on something of a health journey lately; without going into too much detail, I’m trying to be more mindful about food and making sure I’m actually nourished. I customized a May Designs notebook to keep track of my meals, water intake, and, yes, exercise. It’s super cute, and I feel like it will be something I keep reordering.
  13. And of course, last but not least, a tribute to all the dads out there.

Sunday Scaries [5.24.20]

We did it! Another week of social distancing down! And now it’s a long weekend! I may even attempt to venture outdoors, although I’m basically a moleperson at this point, so I’ll have to bring sunscreen & shades.

I think I mentioned in a previous post that I have a sourdough starter and it was finally ready to use this weekend! I made 2 loaves of sourdough, although the first loaf is not as aesthetically pleasing as the second…

xx

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  1. There is, and I cannot stress this enough, a website with transcripts of every episode of Frasier.
  2. Gonna join Book of the Month because I’m a huge nerd!
  3. Speaking of which, my best friend and I are starting our own FaceTime book club and our first pick is Kindred by Octavia Butler. It’s…incredible.
  4. Also speaking of books, my friend wrote her thesis on Motherwit by Onnie Lee Logan and it’s only $4.99 on Kindle right now. I can’t wait to read it!
  5. I am SO OVER shaving. I just want every follicle on my body to die! I am truly about to spend my life savings on laser removal.
  6. I got a subscription to Causebox because I had a code, okay????
  7. I started whitening my teeth because of course I did. My dark teeth have always been a huge insecurity of mine, and it certainly doesn’t help that I’m a coffee and wine drinker. I’m using this treatment system, this pen, and this polish. Here’s hoping I don’t destroy my enamel! I’m definitely starting to see results!
  8. I’ve been doing these Instagram song challenges, and they have brought SO much joy to my life! This is my first one, my second & third which are in progress, and a spinoff playlist that I had to make because there are too many iconic songs from 1991!
  9. This pasta recipe is legendary! Or as John Legend would say, magical!
  10. This site seems very cool for minimalist jewelry.
  11. The grill pan I wanted came back in stock finally!
  12. I’m making this cinnamon roll recipe right now and I’m so excited to eat them.

 

 

And that’s on period.

It’s time to talk about everyone’s favorite topic: periods!

People with periods often deal with upwards of 4 decades of monthly maintenance, and that costs a lot of money over a lifetime. Whether you’re restocking your tampons, shelling out $50 for a menstrual cup, or buying bottle after bottle of (natural!) stain remover to salvage your destroyed clothing, the “pink tax” levied upon dubiously-named “feminine hygiene products” is yet another injustice that many women and trans folks face, on top of an existing pay gap.

But it goes deeper than that. Just as organic, wholesome groceries can be prohibitively expensive for many underprivileged communities, so can safe, organic period care. Conventional tampons and pads contain fragrances and chemicals that are terrible for vaginas, but its a risk we’ve all taken at one point or another, out of necessity or ignorance. I grew up terrified of toxic shock syndrome, convinced that I was going to die simply from taking a necessary precaution to avoid shedding endometrial lining all over the place. And beyond this horror, I haven’t even mentioned the impact single-use products have on our environment as they sit in landfills and leach toxins into the planet.

Of course, you can choose not to get a period. There are many birth controls that lessen or eliminate periods altogether. But this speaks, again, to inequality of access. Many people, because of economic status, religious reasons, or geographical location, can’t just go to a Planned Parenthood and get an IUD. And some people, like me, are fortunate enough to have that luxury, but can’t use hormonal birth control for mental/physical health reasons*.

There’s a lot of shame that comes with periods, too. They’re messy, kind of gross, and deeply stigmatized. They can trigger dysphoria. They can make a person feel helpless, at odds with their body. They’re painful. I read a tweet from a gynecologist that likened the pain of severe period cramps to the pain of a heart attack. Some of us experience the pain of a heart attack twelve times a year! But when you tell cis men people that you have cramps or PMS, they rarely take your concerns seriously. You don’t get sick time from work for severe period symptoms. Many people don’t have the option to stay home at all, and have to work in excruciating pain so that they don’t “waste” a sick day that they could use to, for instance, care for their children. Endometriosis, a debilitating uterine disorder, usually goes undiagnosed because we’re taught from a young age to “toughen up” and ignore our pain.

So, in addition to the globs of blood, pain, gastrointestinal symptoms, expense, and environmental impact, you get to wrestle with social and economic injustice every time you see that hormonal pimple start to form on your jawline or forehead. It’s fucking exhausting. So, obviously, capitalism tried to exploit that.

There are a slew of companies working to destigmatize and “hack” periods—panties that absorb 3 tampons worth of blood, discs and cups to collect shotglasses worth of the stuff, CBD pain creams. Reusable products incur a huge up-front cost, but promise to pay for themselves in sustainability and longevity. But as a consumer, “optimizing” your period is a full-time job.

As you may know, Thinx is cancelled. They’ve been embroiled in scandal ever since sexual harassment allegations came out about their “She-EO,” Miki Agrawal. And even beyond her atrocious, toxic behavior, “Girl Boss Feminism” is a cloyingly patronizing tool of capitalism and patriarchy, and we cannot stan. Even though Thinx has done some important work for trans visibility in their advertising, companies that tout themselves as ethical or intersectional really need to walk the walk. It’s hard to sift through torrents of information online to figure out exactly which businesses you can support—ultimately a fruitless task, since nothing truly ethical can exist under capitalism.

All of which is to say that I decided to undertake this small investigative journalism assignment (i.e. online window shopping) to figure out where I can feel good about purchasing period products. I posted a piece about this a few years ago, but things have changed, and so has our collective consciousness about business practices and single-use plastics. I want to have a 100% waste free period by the end of 2020, and donate all of my remaining conventional menstrual products. If you’re interested in doing so too, keep reading.

The Brands

Sustain

Sustain is a sexual health company that was just acquired by Grove Collaborative. I’d been using their condoms for a while, but I only recently discovered that they’d branched out into period care. I just bought their period underwear and I’m really happy with the purchase. It’s a little shocking paying $30 for a single pair of panties, but being able to go cup-free on light days with no concerns about stains was actually really liberating. They offer a menstrual cup, and their single-use products boast organic and plant-based ingredients.

I did a little bit of research, and apparently Sustain was founded by Jeff Hollander (of Seventh Generation) and his daughter, Meika, in effort to make a woman-focused sexual health brand. Would recommend! Just a tip though, if you’ve got a booty, size up in the underwear. According to the chart, I’m a medium, but I got a large and they fit perfectly. Size inclusivity is, so far, is my only gripe with this company, but hopefully as their brand grows through Grove, they’ll expand their sizing!

Knix

Knix is a Canadian brand that doesn’t have the same size inclusivity problem that Sustain has. Plus, they have a bunch of different cuts and styles of leakproof panties, for a very reasonable cost! They’re only $23, and you save 25% if you buy three pairs *furiously adds to cart*. Their advertising features women of all shapes, races, and ages which one could see as pandering, but I found it refreshing that, for once, none of the women on a website looked like me. The panties also come with a lingerie wash bag, which is a very smart move to attract cleaning freaks like me. I bought 6 pairs to take advantage of the “Buy 3” and free shipping, and one of my browser extensions found a $15 off coupon (SOCIAL15). So, for the price of 3 pairs of Thinx, I got an entire week’s worth of period protection. The best part of these is that you can wear them to the gym to absorb sweat too!

They did come under fire for a tone-deaf ad, but they apparently resolved it and apologized immediately (although the only places I could find info about this were the Daily Mail and Fox News, which, as we know, is not a credible news source, but a tool of fascism). I saw the ad, and while it is never my intention to defend a brand, it does seem like it was just a miscommunication that would have benefitted from a more critical eye and better copy.

TomboyX

TomboyX is one of those brands that you always hear about in podcast ads. They’re a gender-inclusive underwear company that makes eco-friendly, ethical underwear in tons of cuts, prints, and sizes (XS-$X). They just launched a leakproof line! They’re definitely on the pricey side, but they do offer discounts on multipacks. I’ve never bought anything from this company, but I’ve only heard great things, and they really seem to care about transparency and inclusivity, which rules. And also, ROYGBIV undies? That’s extremely tailored to my interests.

Modibodi

Modibodi is an Australian company that gets consistently great reviews, and they appear to have a strong charitable focus. Their period panties range in size from 3XS-6XL, and for extra bonus points, they do period swimwear! They also have leakproof & sweatwicking undies for dudes, as well as a vegan line.

Joyja

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Joyja, a branch of Adore Me, period underwear are probably the cutest ones I’ve seen so far, and have a great size range (XS to 4X). They’re really cost-effective ($20, with bundle discounts) and they, like Modibodi, have a buy one, give one model, like the Toms of period underwear (but hopefully less easily debunked, thanks Adam Ruins Everything).

Dear Kate

Dear Kate is another brand (XS-3X) with consistently great reviews that are manufactured in New York City! They’re a bit pricier than the others on this list, but they have activewear and dancewear that lets you “Go Commando.” In 2014, they had an ad campaign featuring women tech executives modeling their products (they often use nontraditional models) which got…mixed reviews. Whether you look at it as undermining women CEOs or making a bold comment on how women in business are objectified, either way, it started a conversation about sexism in the workplace.

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nixit

I recently tried out the nixit cup and I have to say I love it! nixit is a Canadian company that sells a menstrual disc that, in my opinion, is easier to insert, place, and remove than traditional menstrual cups, since it doesn’t use suction to stay in place. Also, apparently you can have sex while wearing a nixit, but I’ll let someone else be the judge of that. They’re made of medical-grade silicone (like proper sex toys!), so you can keep these for years, unlike traditional menstrual cups, which you should replace every three years or so. At $49, it’s an investment, but I think it’s very worth it. Intimina, which makes the Lily Cup, also has a disc, called the Ziggy Cup, which is a little bit cheaper and, apparently, available at CVS!

Dame

If you’re stuck on tampons (trust me, I get it), there’s a reusable applicator on the market! Yes, you heard that correctly! No more shoving the little cotton bullets up yourself with a finger! I wish this had been around ten years ago, it would have been such a lifesaver! This product doesn’t entire fix the waste issue, but if you buy organic, biodegradable tampons to use with it, it’s definitely a step in the right direction! It’s $22, which is not bad, but you still have to buy tampons for it, so it’s definitely not the most economical product on the list.

Saalt

Saalt cups are available at Target, and I’ve never had a problem with mine! My only gripe was that the plastic was rather rigid, but they’ve introduced a soft cup. Saalt products are eligible for FSA/HSA reimbursement (win!) and they have a cup wash which takes the guesswork out of daily cleanings during your cycle. They’re $30, which is a little less of a sting than Lunette cups, which are $10 more for essentially the same product. Cora and DivaCup are also available at Target, for  $30 and $37, respectively.

Reusable Pads

So this is not a brand, but there are plenty of places to get reusable pads and liners online. Peace with the Wild has really cute options, and you can always support makers on Etsy! I made the switch to reusable cotton rounds for my makeup, and I’ll never go back…I think it’s time to do the same for liners! I have one reusable liner from Hesta Organic, which I like, but they definitely stain, so they’re not the most aesthetic. Hesta also makes really cost-effective period panties, so if you’re hesitant to try them because of the cost, this might be a good route!

 

There are a lot of organizations that provide menstrual products to people in need. Bustle put out a list in 2017; a quick Google search will yield tons of ways that you can donate to help people in your community. I just sent a box of bras to Support the Girls, which also accepts menstrual products. My work provides free tampons and pads to students, which makes me very proud (every school/business should do this). No one with a period should ever have to feel shame or desperation. Those of us who can afford the luxuries listed above need to do our part, now more than ever, to make sustainable choices.

*The Pill was, imo, a more revolutionary invention than the wheel or sliced bread, but it can also absolutely wreck your life if you’re one of the unlucky few with severe side effects. Also, tricking your body into thinking it’s pregnant seems…bad? Or if not bad, definitely a weird medical flex, bro. But I have friends whose birth control prescriptions literally save their lives, so how about we EXALT birth control and give it out to every person that needs it for free, eh?

Sunday Scaries [4.19.20]

Good morning, America! Did you get your stimulus check yet? I had to literally go to the IRS website and request it because they “didn’t have my payment information.” They sure had it when we owed at tax time…

It’s been…a week. I’m quickly running out of home projects to do, so I’m just making them up at this point. The other day I collected ALL of the cardboard in our entire house and brought it out for recycling. I put up shelves in my “laundry room” (also known as my basement) for dryer balls & stain spray. I deep cleaned our old bathroom (which now houses the litter box, and was truly so filthy I’m embarrassed). That’s where I’m at spiritually/emotionally with quarantine. I am compulsively exerting what little control I do have, and trying to Serenity-Prayer-it-up about *gestures openly at the unprecedented horror.*

Streetlights | Bonnie Raitt
my queen

I hope you’re doing well in spite of everything! Stay the f*** home!

    1. You must, and I cannot stress this enough, listen to the album Streetlights by Bonnie Raitt immediately.
    2. This is actually my favorite curling wand (for the price, that is). I bought mine on Poshmark for $10 and I’ve had it for years. It serves the best wave.
    3. When I was in my early twenties, I used to throw purple Manic Panic over my dark hair for a violet glow…we’re stuck in the house now, so there’s no work dress code to tell me I can’t have purple hair…
    4. Obsessed with this shower curtain. When we renovated, we got a new bathroom, bu the old one persists…we use it as the cat’s litter box room. Should I get the curtain just for the aesthetic? Wrong answers only.
    5. I stole this from another link round-up but THERE’S AN ENNEAGRAM CANDLE COLLECTION! Have you taken the test? I am a four, but I scored almost equally high as a two. I have to say, the scents are spot on.
    6. I am an absolute freak for the gold-and-lucite look. I can’t wait to update all of the pulls in my house with something like these.
    7. It’s always kind of awkward having to ask for the WiFi password at someone’s house. I love printables like this that you can display for company!
    8. This is the greatest invention ever and I need one for every room of my house!!! And while we’re at it, get me one of these!
    9. I was finally going to get a physical on 4/8, after years of crappy health insurance, but obviously with the virus, all non-essential medical services are pretty much out. I’ve been really curious about doing a food sensitivity test, since I’ve always felt that something is a bit off. I’m checking out Everlywell, and I just happened to snag it on the last day of the 25% off promotion!
    10. Can’t wait to read Jen Gotch’s book! On that note, I had a Kindle credit, so I just bought Untamed by Glennon Doyle. I know I said I was going to stop reading books from Reese’s book club but…I mean…in her defense, they’ve all been really good so far.

See you next week, if there is a next week!

-c

For the Love of God, Take My Wallet Away [Part Deux]

Just like Miley of the Cyrus clan, I simply cannot be tamed. I actually talked about spending in therapy, and my therapist said to be kind to myself about it because we’re living in a time of unprecedented horror!

One thing, other than reckless spending (lol), that’s been getting me through quar life is Twitter. I love that there’s a place that can make me sob, curse god, feel existential terror, and then make me snort laughing in the span of 5 minutes. Completely normal! Please enjoy this exquisite cartoon, from my favorite meme account, Russian Memes United. Translation:

Russian Classical Literature /

suffering hero (main character) / suffering author / suffering reader

Universal Suffering

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weird personal fact: my high school boyfriend was from russia, so he taught me the letters & pronunciations of the cyrillc alphabet. so i can read russian…but i can’t understand it. i will say that a lot of words are cognates with other languages! in the second tier, two of the words are “hero” and “author;” basically the same in russian!

And so without further ado…

Lovin’…is what I bought:

  • A Glossier haul. I got more Solution, the Skincare set, Future Dew, and 2 Generation Gs. I need to start taking better care of my skin yesterday. I never had acne growing up, so when I have occasional pimples now, I basically panic and go nuclear on them. I’ve been getting away with gross negligence for too long…as age 30 looms, I’ve got to get my act together.
  • A Headley & Bennett “Wake Up & Fight” Mask. It’s now recommended that we wear masks while out in public (to protect others from us), so I was going to have to get one eventually. The cool thing about the Headley & Bennett masks is that they’re 100% cotton, made in LA, reusable, and each purchase donates a mask to a health care worker. Plus, they have a filter insert for added protection! I think this company’s entire operation has switched to producing masks, and it’s weirdly inspiring: capitalism, but for…doing good?
  • I caved and got a May Designs mask too. Even after COVID is over, I think we should still wear masks if we’re symptomatic of anything. We need to step up to protect immunocompromised people!
  • Container Store haul! Snagged some pantry labels, canisters, cable turtles, and a cable hider.
  • The Home Edit is putting out another book! I pre-ordered—I’m psyched for it to arrive in September (provided we’re all still alive then)! I have to admit that their first book was, well, not exactly for those of us actually living the low-bar lifestyle (who has an actual pantry room?) but it’s aesthetically stunning and always nice to get compulsive organization confirmation bias from my like-minded idols.
  • On that note, I treated myself to this very professional COVID-19 themed work attire. Let’s just say I’m surviving…not thriving. THE only does limited runs of official merch, and I always miss out on it. Not this time!
  • Madewell sale was still popping off, so I got these boots and this belt bag, which matches my Zip-Top Transport Carryall in the same color. I’ve been looking for a nice-quality pair of leather boots for under $100, and the gods delivered! Also, I love belt bags in theory, but haven’t successfully pulled one off yet. Now is finally the time! Oh, and the boots fit perfectly.
  • I wanted to try out Pact, so I ordered this dress super on sale (in Rosewood Heather & Cadet Blue). I used the code ORGANIC2020 for 20% off!
  • Quibi. So, I’m not entirely on board with the concept, but there’s a 90-day free trial and MATT ROGERS has his own show on there! Gonna have to stan on that one.

Updates!

  • The lilac Madewell jeans didn’t work out…back they go, sadly. They fit okay, they were just very rigid.
  • The Kate Spade wallet is not quite as nice as the one I already have (final sale, though)…it’s obviously very cute, but I’m going to sit on it for a week, and if my feelings don’t change, it’s going up on Poshmark.
  • The Rothys were a win! I’m so glad I went a half size up. Honestly, I could have even gone a full size. If you get this style and you have wide feet like me, definitely size up! These ones are next, for sure.
  • The West Elm bedside table is gorgeous and great quality for the price! My only gripe is that the drawer itself is very shallow and small, but it did force me to go through what I kept in there and edit, so I’m calling it a win.
  • The Thirdlove Pima bras & undies are even more comfy than I expected them to be. I want to live in these bras, for real.
  • The nixit is great! Easier to put in/take out than regular cups and I’ve barely had leaks.

I’m going to put my poor wallet to bed. It’s been fun, but I’ve got to maintain my credit score and be responsible with the stimulus check we’re supposedly getting.

None of this will make up for not being able to see friends and family, missing vacations, or my general feeling of nagging uncertainty, but surrounding myself with pretty things or letting myself have little dopamine hits now and again is really all I can do right now.

What are you doing to stay sane?

-c

For the Love of God, Take My Wallet Away

I’m serious. Come to my house, take it away from me, and throw it into a swamp. It has to be a swamp, because I have a deathly fear of alligators and will never attempt to retrieve it.

Being stuck at home all day without diversion is difficult for those of us who are used to being out of the house 10+ hours a day. I am not in any way complaining, of course: I’m so fortunate to live and work where I do. I’m also quarantined with a partner and a pet, so I’m not feeling the strain of a lack of companionship that a lot of people are right now. But it’s been an adjustment. Being at home all day has made me want to streamline and beautify my house, and it’s made me keenly aware of things like, oh, my bras are 5 years old. Things I can normally ignore for a while, like dirty dishes in the sink, become intolerable. Anything that’s not organized by ROYGBIV is an eyesore.

So, I’ve made some purchases. I’m only human (and I need to be loved, just like everybody else does).

Here are all the (nonessential) things I’ve bought since quarantine started and my reviews:

      • Cameron Esposito’s book, Save Yourself, on audiobook. 10/10 would recommend. I’m about 60% of the way through already because I can’t stop listening.
      • ThirdLove, baby! They were having a sale so I finally bit the bullet. I am ashamed to admit how old all of my bras are (you can probably guess how old they are by the fact that they’re Victoria’s Secret PINK…) and I seriously needed to upgrade. I got the Classic T-Shirt Bra, which I cannot recommend highly enough, the Classic Uplift Plunge Bra, the Classic Strapless Bra, and the Seamless Lounge Bra (this was free with my purchase). The only one I’m not thrilled with is the strapless bra, because strapless bras are the work of the devil, but as strapless bras go, I trust it to get the job done.
      • This ban.do necklace. Over a year ago, when I got my initial (ultimately not completely accurate) psychiatric diagnosis, I bought this one, but I had to make an update. Eventually, I’ll complete the trifecta. This necklace is tiny and dainty and perfect for everyday wear.
      • I needed another slipper chair, because I moved our other one into the bedroom (it’s the sunniest room in our house, and, in between the plants, makes for a perfect reading nook!) I love the look of this chair, and I got it super on sale, but I will say that it’s lower-backed than I had hoped, and doesn’t quite fill the space it’s in.
      • This rug. I’m obsessed. It’s so soft, and it brings such a vibe to my bedroom. Great quality for the price.
      • This bag. So cute, and deceptively roomy! It’s deeply important to me that all of my purses can accommodate a reusable water bottle and a book.
      • I love these boots, so much. I’ve needed replacement booties for ages (I wore my Seychelles pair, similar to these, until they literally fell apart). I’ve been looking everywhere; the last place I expected to find them was Target. They’re super comfortable, go with everything, and I didn’t have to spend a fortune.
      • Betabrand Dress Pant Yoga Pants. I really wanted these to work out, since dress pants are a goddamn nightmare for me. My ankles, I think, are proportional to my hips/waist, and in dress pant world this is a no-no. Whoever designs dress pants thinks women are shaped like Humpty-Dumpty, it’s a travesty. All of which is a long way of saying that I returned them. I bought a medium, my normal size, and they were super loose in the waist. If I ever see a pair I like on sale (like, really on sale) I might try again in a small.
      • Lightswitch plates. Unfortunately, the ones I bought are no longer available, but they’re Hearth & Hand with Magnolia black metal. They look amazing and were soooo on sale.

Yet to Arrive/Use:

      • The nixit menstrual cup. I’m all about a waste-free period, so I’m up to try any innovation on that score. I’ve been using the Saalt cup and wash, which I’m perfectly happy with, but the nixit seems like it might be a little easier to insert/take out.
      • Sustain Period Underwear. Basically Thinx, but available through Grove. Sustain is an awesome sexual health brand, and we stan.
      • This pink nightstand! When I first moved into my house, over 6 years ago, I didn’t have a nightstand, so I picked something up at Marshall’s for about $30. It’s cute, but it really doesn’t go with our decor. This will be a perfect fit for our room!
      • I have long stanned Girlfriend Collective, and the Spring collection is no exception. I treated myself to the Paloma Bra & Leggings in “Wildflower.” I may have also gotten some scrunchies…the Unitard is on my wishlist but I have no idea why I’d ever need one. Fun fact—you get $15 off when you sign up for texts!
      • I shopped the Madewell sale for the first time in a while. But how could I have resisted these jeans? I’m probably going to live in this dress, and this one was too cute to pass up.
      • I mentioned this in a previous post, but I caved and bought these. But I will absolutely return them if the fit is not perfect! I swear!
      • More ThirdLove! They’re having a 2/$99 sale on their Pima Cotton Bras, so I snagged this one in Stormy Lilac and Ballet. I should mention: I’m donating all of my gently-used bras to I Support the Girls, which is an amazing organization that you should definitely check out! I also snagged the 7/$47 undies.
      • I’ve had my Kate Spade wallet for years and it’s one of the best investments I’ve made. It’s sturdy, functional, and adorable. Time to welcome another baby into the family…
      • Winc wine subscription. I am not about to go out right now for non-essentials, like wine, but it does suck being trapped day after day without a little something to sip on.

think that’s it, although I wouldn’t be terribly shocked if a random package arrived in the next few weeks. Some of the items in the below section will inevitably be returned (please don’t think I’m made of money), and I’m definitely going to chill out now that quarantine life is becoming the new normal. I think, in times of stress or trauma, we can fall back on old patterns (for me, overspending), but we have to give ourselves some grace right now.

Stay Home & Stay Sane

So, everyone’s sharing their tips for how to maintain a sliver of sanity during quarantine, so I thought I’d jump into the mix and share what’s (barely) working for me. This historical moment will probably traumatize us for the rest of our lives, but instead of living in a state of constant fear and anxiety, I’m trying to be grateful for this rare chance to rest. Negativity and stress actually tear down your immune system; we need to take care of ourselves and our physical and mental health during times of crisis and grief. If we’re lucky enough to be safe and healthy at home, we need to show solidarity to our communities by being the best versions of ourselves and helping wherever we can. So, rather than list a bunch of charities you can donate to (that will come, trust me), here are ten little (mostly) free ways to honor yourself and your space right now.

Sanity GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY
source: giphy
  1. Create a morning coffee (or tea!) routine. We can’t go out for coffee right now (I mourn it constantly), but now is the time to up your homebrew game! My go-to is the Chemex. It’s a little bit more labor-intensive than a French press, but the returns are far from diminishing. It’s by far the smoothest at-home coffee experience you can have. If you have an income right now, splurging on a Chemex and a gooseneck kettle will pay for itself within the month. I’ve come to cherish my quiet coffee time in the morning.
  2. *very Eminem voice* Clean out your closet! I find The Curated Closet to be a great resource for determining your personal style. What better time could there be to do the workbook than when you’re stuck inside with no work dress code? This is a. super fun, b. a great way to get rid of clutter, and c. a way to make a small income during a time when finances might be hard (through resale sites like Poshmark).
  3. Lean into work! If you’re lucky enough to be employed and able to work from home right now, lean into it. I’m super fortunate to actually enjoy my job, but even if you don’t particularly like your line of work, now’s a good time to embrace what you’ve got for the moment. If you’re working, that’s 8 whole hours of your day that you’re no longer obligated to fill!
  4. That being said, establish work-life boundaries. Working from home was going to go one of two ways: either I was going to goof off all day and get nothing done, or turn into a workaholic zombie who refused to take breaks. It’s the latter. Set an alarm at the same time every day and eat lunch, or take a walk, or in my case, take a shower. Get away from your computer screen if you can. You deserve it! Breaks are a legally-mandated part of your workday!
  5. Pick up a book. This has been the hardest part of quarantine for me. Even though I’m faced with endless time on my hands, I, like a lot of women, feel guilty whenever I have free time. I feel like I should be cooking, or cleaning, or working, or writing, or learning French, or literally doing anything besides relaxing. We need to stop punishing ourselves. Pick up the book, watch the tv show, do the puzzle. Do what you like.
  6. Meditate. Full disclosure, I have not actually started meditating BUT I know that I need to because I have anxiety that tends to keep me up at night. There’s, quite literally, no time like the present to start this healthy habit. Mindfulness is a big buzzword right now, but meditation can be free, very beneficial, and a far cry from Goop wellness culture.
  7. Make a mood board. The first thing I did when quarantine started was clean, organize, and redecorate my house like a madwoman. What I wish I had done was create a mood board to figure out the direction I wanted my décor to take. Do I want to make big changes or work with what I have? Do I need a new pink shag rug so that my bedroom will be “perfect?” Making a décor mood board (or, for that matter, a fashion one) is like a return to the magic of childhood imagination.
  8. Do something you’ve never done before. My example of this is that (I’m aware of how privileged this sounds) I had never actually painted the walls of my house before. My father-in-law does all the major updates here, so I was afraid to give it a try for fear of “messing up” all of his hard work. But on Saturday night I got so bored that I said, “Fuck it.” I went to the basement, looked through all the paint colors, found a cool grey, and painted a door and some faux “gables” on top. They came out really awesome and, as it turns out, I had no reason to be afraid! I’m a good painter. There’s no better time than now to take a creative risk, and there are so many things you can do that don’t cost a cent.
  9. Whatever you do, don’t punish yourself for eating. Not that you should ever have misgivings about eating, but we’re trapped inside all day! If you want a snack, have a snack! And if you’re like me, and you have the opposite problem (completely forgetting to eat all day without structured mealtimes), set an alarm and force yourself to establish healthy habits. You deserve to nourish your body.
  10. Dance like nobody’s watching. It’s a cliché for a reason, people! I have been putting on late ’90s pop, or Broadway musicals, and putting on full performances in my kitchen. I even cut my toe dancing, I was going so hard. It’s not only a great form of exercise for those of us who are indoor cats, but the movement and the music gives you a mega-blast of endorphins.

Well, I’m not used to being so cheery and positive, but I think that a lifetime of catastrophizing and anxiety have really prepared me for actual chaos. I’ve always put the needs of others before my own, but we’re really in a “put your oxygen mask on before helping others” situation, so I’m slowing down and honoring that.

-c

Sunday Scaries: Quarantine Edition [3.29.20]

*extremely Bernie Sanders voice* I am once again asking you to bear with me as I change the name of this series. I wrote a massive post yesterday so I’m just gonna yeet this one out into the world. Thanks for reading!

Evita | Metrograph
source
  1. Can’t wait to watch Whitmer Thomas’ HBO Special.
  2. I’m officially in the acting-out-musicals stage of quarantine and right now it’s Evita (the Madonna/Banderas soundtrack). I literally injured my toe from dancing barefoot on hardwood, so, it’s getting serious. Also, not trying to brag but my “Buenos Aires” is top-notch (but it’s no Patti).
  3. This song is a classic and I’ve listened to it so much that I somehow know the words despite not knowing Spanish.
  4. I probably shouldn’t be ordering anything non-essential but this breadbox is so goddamned cute. I feel like, even when I don’t have any bread in the house (which is often), it’s such a good hack to keep your kitchen counters clear.
  5. I really want to replace all of the knobs on my kitchen cabinets and these mf-ing pulls. Also, I just got the tentative okay from my landlord father-in-law to paint my cabinets white! A DREAM!
  6. Should I watch Watchmen? My best friend keeps telling me I’d love it.
  7. I am obsessed with this video.
  8. I’m very into sleep hygiene/sleep routines. I use a weighted blanket, a pillow mist, satin pillowcases, and an eye mask every night, and ban.do has some really cute ones on sale right now.
  9. I’m growing out my hair right now to a goal length I can only refer to as “sister wife,” so please let me know which hair-growth snake oil I should buy. I have a massive backstock of Care/of vitamins (I never remember to take vitamins) and I wash my hair twice a week, but apart from that I’m not really doing much other than dustings every 10-ish weeks.
  10. Now that Everlane’s out, where the hell do I shop? Thinking about checking out Pact. They seem pretty affordable!

P.S. I’m not going to watch Tiger King so literally don’t even ask.

 

 

Shout Out Sunday 2.16.20

Good morning, friends! I’ve been on staycation for the past week, and I have to say: time off is extremely good for mental health! On Friday, I took a tour of the Rhode Island State House. Random, but it was super fun! Doris, the tour guide, was an absolute treat!

It’s been so nice to relax and reset before I start my new job. I feel like an entirely new person. And with the renewed energy of a calm and centered woman, here’s this week’s list!

  1. Breaking news: Daniel M. Lavery‘s essay collection, Something That May Shock and Discredit You, is officially out! I pre-ordered because I’m a full stan. I made an Instagram story about it when I received it and DANNY FUCKING DM’D ME. I have photographic evidence!
  2. I am sobbing re: Wes Anderson’s new film, The French Dispatch. July can’t come soon enough.
  3. There’s a High Fidelity reboot series starring Zoë Kravitz on Hulu and I cannot wait to binge the shit out of it.
  4. This article is…so relatable.
  5. Started watching the Australian Netflix series, Sisters. I’m loving it so far—the premise is dark, but the show is so vibrant!
  6. I am obsessed with Universal Standard, and I truly wish I were a millionaire so I could bedeck myself in all of their wares.
  7. Should I get an Instant Pot? I already have so, so many kitchen appliances but people seem to love them! A huge consideration, of course, is that it comes in this color. Extremely into the idea of making my own yogurt!
  8. As you know, I’m a full-on ho for podcast endorsements, so I’m looking forward to checking out Thrive Causemetics! I actually have one of their products already (I got it in a subscription box) and I love it!
  9. I never wear sneakers but I have the soul of a sneakerhead. I keep getting targeted ads for Nothing New, and I truly wonder how long it will take me to break.
  10. Against my better judgment, I’m absolutely buying this dish set. It’s finally time to donate the Ikea set that I’ve been rocking for 6 years and get some grown-up dishes. They’re not microwave-safe so it’s all the more reason to ditch that appliance!
i told you i had proof

C U Next…Week?

-c