Friday Favorites:: Edition 18

Houston Moms "Friday Favorites:: A Weekly Glance at Our Favorite Things" #houstonmoms #houstonmomsblog #momsaroundhouston

Well, it’s officially the start of a new year and frankly, I don’t know how to feel about it. Thankful 2020 is finally, for the love of all things holy, over. Anxious about the uncertainty that still lies before us. Excited to get my house back in order. Depresses the holidays are over. I’m pretty much running the gauntlet of emotions on any given day.

I guess you could say feeling fifteen different emotions at once is my superpower.

As I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels conflicted about the month of January, especially the January following a spectacularly stressful 2020, I thought I’d share a few of the things currently bringing me comfort and joy at the moment.

To Sip

Okay, so I rarely confess this to people as it often draws incredulous stares and the occasional whisper, but I don’t like coffee and I’m not a big fan of chocolate. I know, I know. I’m a strange beast. If I admitted that I don’t really like wine either I’d probably get kicked out of the motherhood club, so I won’t mention that one.

The truth is I don’t like anything remotely bitter. Still, on cold winter mornings I do sometimes wish I liked a good mocha chino or latte, something to get the blood kicking and keep my perpetually frosty hands warm. Knowing of {and mostly accepting, he accepted me for the good and the bad after all} my tastebud oddities, my husband surprised me this Christmas with some Ghirardelli white hot cocoa powder. Game. Changer. Simply mix with warm milk and it’s the perfect antidote to the January blues. And for my fellow Potterheads, if you add in a shot of butterscotch flavoring, it tastes nearly identical to the hot Butterbeer from the Wizarding World parks. You’re welcome. 

To Blend

My kids love a good smoothie, but in the way of all frustrating preschool and toddler aged siblings, they inevitably don’t like the same blends. One loves peanut butter, the other loathes it. One wants bananas and the other says they’re “ucky”. It sure keeps my time in the kitchen interesting. 

Cue the Magic Bullet blender. My mom bought one on a whim one day and it’s been the answer to every mom’s prayers. It’s the perfect size to create single serve smoothies, and with multiple blending cups, requires zero washing in between blends. Mama still prefers the Ninja blender for margaritas and other such adult beverages, but you can’t beat the magic bullet for a quick toddler snack, saving you plenty of time to negotiate who’s turn it is to pick a show or which color LEGO is the best. True story. 

To Snuggle

I hate when all the Christmas decor is finally put away after the holiday, not only because my house looks positively naked with it gone, but because with all my pretty Christmas throw blankets gone, I am constantly cold. Seriously, I’m like a human popsicle. I’m maybe the only person who carries around a jacket in the dead of Houstonian summers {because I swear, my body simply cannot handle the AC inside after the sweltering heat}. 

Luckily for me, Target caters to the perpetually frosty, holiday enthusiasts. I found this adorable Spritz Valentines blanket while adding groceries to my online order the other day {I swear it just popped up when I was looking at veggie blends. By no means was I window shopping for home decor. Ahem.} And low and behold, my Shipt shopper had no trouble snagging it for me. It’s soft, makes for excellent Netflix binging snuggles, and if it kickstarts decorating for the next holiday…well, all the better. 

To Binge

BRIDGERTON (L to R) FLORENCE HUNT as HYACINTH BRIDGERTON, LUKE NEWTON as COLIN BRIDGERTON, RUTH GEMMELL as LADY VIOLET BRIDGERTON, PHOEBE DYNEVOR as DAPHNE BRIDGERTON, CLAUDIA JESSIE as ELOISE BRIDGERTON, JONATHAN BAILEY as ANTHONY BRIDGERTON, WILL TILSTON as GREGORY BRIDGERTON and LUKE THOMPSON as BENEDICT BRIDGERTON in episode 105 of BRIDGERTON Cr. LIAM DANIEL/NETFLIX © 2020

I’ve been looking forward to Shonda Rhimes’ new show Bridgerton for months and was thrilled when I saw it released Christmas Day. Having read the books back in college during my Austen and Bronte class {my lit professor was seriously cool}, I was eager to watch the adaptation. And let me say, it did not disappoint. It’s Gossip Girl meets Pride and Prejudice with plenty of sex scenes and elaborate costuming thrown in for kicks. Talk about steam and sizzle! I flew through it in three days {no easy feat with a new baby still waking up at all hours of the night for feedings} and am already desperate for news of a second season.

And may I add, for anyone else who’s already going through Bridgerton withdrawals, I highly recommend Sandition (PBS Masterpiece) and, my personal favorite, North and South (BBC). There’s less naked romping in the gardens, but plenty of longing glances to fill the void.  

To Create

My hobbies are many and varied, but nearly all feature some form of artistic expression. After purchasing an iPad a few years ago, I heard great things about the Procreate app and decided to give it a try. Let me just say, it’s my current obsession. For the coloring enthusiasts, you can upload digital coloring sheets from Pinterest or Etsy and use an Apple Pencil to shade them in with the freedom to erase or try different color combinations. I myself use it to draw, illustrate, and occasionally add fun details to my photographs. It’s very user friendly, can be used in conjunction with Photoshop, and has endless possibilities.

Houston Moms "In Case You Missed it"

 

Containing Christmas:: Creating a Storage System– January is a month of new beginnings. This year I decided to add a new project to my plate:: a Christmas storage system for our decorations. 

Simon Basset is Bae:: The Best of Bridgerton– I am not even going to try and hide my fascination with the series; What I am going to do is ruminate in the love affair by sharing my bests of Bridgerton.

His Backpack Now Fits:: Reflections on the End of the Preschool Years– Maybe it’s not preschool, but it’s him. He’s the one wrapping up this era for our family, while he’s at an age that’s pretty dang near perfect.

Human Trafficking Awareness Month:: Know the Facts and Get Involved- January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month, and knowing the facts about this complex problem empowers us to get involved to end it.

Healthy Comfort Meals for the New Year– Three healthy, delicious comfort meals to help reset your eating habits for the new year.


To find more Friday Favorites, check out these other posts


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Houston Moms "Friday Favorites:: A Weekly Glance at Our Favorite Things" #houstonmoms #houstonmomsblog #momsaroundhouston

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Lauren M. is a native Houstonian who now lives one street over from the house where she grew up in Sugar Land. After a brief fling with Austin where she received her Bachelors Degree in English Lit from Southwestern University, she returned home to attempt to write the great American novel {or, you know, the next Harry Potter series}. A short while later a friend recruited her for a kickball league where she met a tall, handsome engineer who quite literally swept her off her feet. After tying the knot in 2014, they soon welcomed their first son Raleigh {October 2015}, and little brother Renner {January 2018}. When not chasing around her two crazy Texas tornados and reveling in the boy mom life, Lauren has discovered a newfound passion for photography and Photoshop, creating whimsical family portraits at @andwhetherpigshavewings on Instagram. You can also find her at @totalkofmommythings and on her blog, And Whether Pigs Have Wings.

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