Links I Like



Who knew that more people than not don’t set goals?!? Antisparkle isn’t one of it and talks about how to get stuff done. If you want to actually get her tips, you’ll need to sign up for her newsletter.

These jack-o-lantern shepherd’s pie stuffed peppers are the cutest things I’ve seen in a while. This is the kind of thing that looks like it would be a fun lunch surprise, if only you could get it to keep it’s shape.

I’m a pumpkin spice lover, not a pumpkin spice fighter. Joy the Baker will hook you up with a recipe to make your own pumpkin spice mix. It’s a good mix; I’ve made it. Bake at 350 reviewedTrader Joe’s Pumpkin Macarons and made me want to leave home immediately to go get some. 

Speaking of pumpkin, Averie Cooks posted The Best Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls. I have to admit that they look pretty dang good.

I eat meat, but I don’t love to cook it. But Serious Eats posted Cider-Braised Country-Style Pork Ribs With Creamy Mashed Potatoes. Just reading the name of the recipe makes me drool.

When I saw the words “bubbly” and “coffee” together, I had to know more. This makes me wish I had whipping cream in the fridge.

I made some sriracha butter earlier today, and it made me want to try some other things like sriracha popcorn or sriracha chickpeas. Time will tell.



In an open letter to the gross granola bars I bought in bulk before I knew they were gross,

“It wasn’t until I looked into my lunch bag to discover that, despite my remaining hunger, the bag was empty that I fully appreciated you. The good thing about you is that I certainly won’t eat you when I don’t absolutely need to, but when I do need a little something to get me through the rest of the work day, you will be there.”

Mason Jar Cozies

I’ve been using canning jars as serving, storage, an carrying vessels for a  while now. Not so much of a while that I was before the curve or anything, but time enough.  Time enough that I’ve been meaning to make a few cozies for a long time.

I love that the canning jar is study and dependable. I also love that the tops screw on quite nicely. However, the glass is no insulator. So your coffee can become quite cool quite quickly without something to help things out. Also, who wants to hold a hot glass? I’ve done it so many times understanding that it was a precarious proposition at best.

So, the next thing to do was a bit of research. 

I had seen this one a while ago. When I Googled this time around, I found a tutorial that seemed super simple. It lived up to my expectations. I cut the pieces out to make a few cozies. Then the next day, I sewed them.

I could have made so many more, but making even three was probably overkill. After all, I never intend to use more than one of them at a time. The owl corduroy was made from the leftover fabric from an unsuccessful skirt incident. That incident taught me never to make a skirt shorter than I think it should be to, you know, stretch myself. 

I digress.

The spider fabric is something I bought to make cloth napkins, and I will still have plenty fabric for a Halloween themed napkin or two. The denim cozy was made from leftovers from another sewing project. Another skirt, in fact. A skirt that panders to, not violates my own personal modesty standards.

So there it is. I have canning jar cozies. I can’t wait to try them.



September Goal 3 = Completed.

I’ve mentioned here that I’m looking at my annual goals differently and setting 3-6 goals per month during this year leading up to my 36th birthday. One of the goals for September-October was to finish a scrapbook of the Washington DC trip I took with Alex.

Mission completed! I used a small Project Life binder to document the trip. The goal is for me and Alex to be able to look at this book  and think of the highlights of our trip.rtsb2

One of the best things about these trips are the funny things that Alex says. I don’t even know how many times I’ve told the story of Alex looking up at a statue of William McKinley and declaring him the type of guy whose belly is in the pants. Something about that tickled me to my core. These are the things that want to keep close.

The other thing that I try to do is just generally capture moments from Ale’s life right now. When I look at this in the future, I want to see Alex on the cusp of his 11th birthday.
rtsb6Right now he’s the boy who likes to blaze ahead of me in these museums and monuments. He also likes to take any opportunity to check out birds and squirrels. If taxidermy is involved, he is guaranteed to take a good long look.

rtsb7The funniest thing about reaching this goal though is that this year’s trip is documented, but last year’s is not (completely) documented.


Herbert Hoover, Here I Come…

Above, my friends, is one heck of a Herbert Hoover collage. Even a president aficionado (as I was called when I visited the Theodore Roosevelt Inauguration site), was taken aback by all of that Hooverness.

This weekend I’ll be meeting a friend at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum. I am so thrilled that she suggested the trip. I can’t wait to see her and hear how life has been treating her over the last several years.

My friend saw a commercial about a First Ladies exhibit at the museum.  I look forward to seeing that in addition to learning more about President Hoover. The exhibit will display items from the first ladies. The website tells us that there will be on one of Hillary Clinton’s suits and Grace Coolidge’s Girl Scout uniform. We’ll also see one of Martha Washington’s rings. While  my interest is primarily in the presidents, I am becoming more intrigued by the women they loved.  I think this exhibit might be just what I need in preparation for the project that will follow Head of State Cakes.

Usually Alex spends the weekends with his dad. However, I don’t like to go do a bunch of fun things without him. That’s just not the way that I want the story of his childhood to go. With this trip, though, I wasn’t sure that he would want to go, so I gave him the choice and he is, indeed, coming. Part of me thinks that he just wants to make serious progress on the audiobook we’re listening to. After all, when I drop him off for school, he makes sure that the audiobook is stopped so that he doesn’t miss a thing. The other part of me thinks that he’s just curious about his mama and her friends.

This trip will take me to the 5th of 14 of the presidential libraries that are run by the National Archives and Records Administration. I am so grateful for these libraries, they help me to delve deeper into this topic that I’ve come to love so much, and they help me to understand the context of so much that is a part of the nation’s history.

I can’t wait.


Getting into a little of a lot of things.