Category Archives: Finds

Domestic Lifesavers

I started writing this post in September, then I forgot. But especially with ALL of the holiday gift guides (THIS IS NOT ONE OF THEM), I felt Called to share the two small appliances that have changed our life in the last year. Especially if you’re still debating what you want for a gift or what sales you want to search for on Boxing Day.

Bissell Smartclean 1974

BUY A ROBOT VACUUM. Buy it now. Especially if you don’t have a housekeeper. Even if you do. You still may need to sweep out a corner or two every month or so. You may want to run your regular vacuum over your large area rug now and then. But this will DRASTICALLY cut down on the amount of time you spend on your floors.

Crockpot 5-in-1 Slowcooker

I felt guilty when we bought this because we already owned a slow cooker. And then it arrived and Marcus (truly accidentally) broke the ceramic bowl of the old one.

Why this Crockpot is superior in all ways: it has a browning feature so you don’t need to use two dishes when you’re preparing a slow cooker meal. That extra dish seemed especially like Mount Everest when Glitter was born. We don’t have an instant pot because I either need the food to cook for 4-6-8 hours or I can cook it myself on the stove in 15-30 minutes.

What have you purchased in the last year that you can’t live without?


Pop Culture Kat

I used to listen to podcasts here and there.  When I was cooking.  When I was cleaning.   When I was sunning (which I REALLY never do anymore).  Now I listen to them constantly because when I’m home with Critter, the house is quiet.  Based on the layout of our house, we do not have a television in the kitchen/living room/dining room area (AKA the shared space of our main floor) so having background noise from the television is an option 0% of the time.  Podcasts to the rescue!

Here is what I am listening to.  I am a total binge listener so I’ll let the episodes stack up and then I’ll go on a jag where that particular “show” is all I listen to for a week straight.  I also don’t set these to automatically refresh (or download) to my phone, so sometimes I don’t even know where I am currently at with listened to or un-listened to episodes!


Coffee and Crumbs Podcast.  I learned about this one via The Mom Hour podcast (you’ll see it below) and after giving the first two episodes a try, I was hooked.  More honest, and unvarnished discussions of motherhood.

25% Friends.  Sarah and Kim started a new podcast, so I had to subscribe!

A Few Things With Claire and Erica.  Kari recommended this one to me.  I still don’t really “get” what it is about.  Material things?  Regardless, the hosts are interesting to listen to.

Happier with Gretchen Rubin.  Confession: I have NEVER listened to this one, but I have it hanging around just in case.  It seems like something I might like.

Matrimoney.  I am such a personal finance voyeur it is not even funny.  I would have to say that most of the advice that Kelsey and Chris share is not profound (much like how the personal finance stuff I share is not profound), but I love listening/learning about the choices other people make!

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Straight Up With Stassi.  YOU GUYS WHEN I FOUND OUT STASSI HAD HER OWN PODCAST IT WAS THE GREATEST DAY OF MY LIFE.  And possibly the middle of my first month of maternity leave.  She talks about exactly what you would expect and I have yet to listen to a disappointing episode.

The Mom Hour with Megan Francis and Sarah Powers.  This is a great podcast for mamas with kids of all ages.  Megan and Sarah have eight children between the two of them, spanning in age from like 2-18.  They provide advice, survival strategies, and real talk.

Pop Culture Happy Hour.  Honestly, I don’t listen to this one that often, but Jillian told me to subscribe, so I did.

The Girl Next Door Podcast.  Love this one.  It’s so fun to hear two neighbors in Arizona chat about their lives, their kids, and whatever happens to be top of mind for that episode.  Some sisterhood, some parenting solidarity.

Call Your Girlfriend.  This.  THIS is the base of my podcast pyramid.  Without Ann and Aminatou, my life would be an empty shell, I am sure.  They keep me woke.  They also taught me what “woke” means.

The Sarah R. Bagley Podcast.  This is the first podcast I EVER listened to and the reason I did is because Sarah asked me to be on it and I figured if I was going to do that I should get with the times and know what one was.  It’s stellar.


A few cozy additions.

Y’all, I started off 2015 with this really self-righteous No Shopping goal because I simply do not need anymore clothes right now.

And I’ve been doing pretty good with that.  I did buy a new pair of black pumps for work and another pair of silver pumps to party in, but other than that, my shopping has been…in control.  AKA Not Happening.

With that being said, I have been coveting the Fairbault Woolen Mill-Target collaboration for several months now.  I’ve looked, looked away, and looked again.

Anyway, it’s on sale now.  The pieces are still what I would consider to be “expensive.”  Which means that they cost more than $30.  I know that paying ~$50 for a blanket is reasonable, but I have a tiny frugal streak, you know?

I grabbed the wool shawl because the last time Kelsey was in town, she informed me that the two NYC trends that have not yet fully made it to Minnesota are blanket scarves and glass water bottles.

Wool Shawl

I’ve been on the prowl for a blanket scarf and realized that this would be the perfect traveling companion for an early March trip to Italy.  I think I’ll have to hold off on the glass water bottle until…after that.  Or you know, next week.

I also grabbed a blanket.  I think it would be a cozy and neutral addition to our living room.


I also thought that the wool would probably be a good contrast to the suede-ish couches and the faux-shearling throw that currently reside in there.  You know, fiber mixing and all that.  Or possibly the first step to 100% vegan living room (not).

Things I Bought That I Love

I’ve bought a few things lately that I’ve been really jazzed about, so obviously the only (right) thing to do is share it with the internet.

Ice Cream

This Market Pantry Peanut Butter Fudge ice cream is just phenomenal.  I found it during a late night shopping spree and it is a dead-ringer for Kemps’ Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge Revel.  As you all know, that is my favorite ice cream of all time.

It’s also one that Kemps does not sell as retail so this was an amazing (and extremely cheap!) discovery.  Otherwise, my usual go-to spot for it is the Yellow House Up North at the Cabin.  I think we  can all agree that in the most general of terms, that is NOT a convenient location 99% of the time.

I also had to buy my first CD in probably 10 years because OMG Taylor Swift.  Becky brought her copy over on Tuesday for girls’ night and we had a listening party like every other group of lady friends in America.  And then I had to go out and get my own.  If you sourced it at Target, you got a set of Taylor Polaroids.

Taylor Swift

Or as we dubbed them, Trading Cards.  I DIE.  We have finally arrived.  This also means that I used my car’s CD player for the first time ever.  When I popped the disc in, it made a grinding sound for probably a good three minutes and I thought that would be the end of all of us.  And yet, there was sound at last.

Finally, (the post office sent it to the wrong office for routing) I got this vest from the J.Crew Factory.


When I was on an adventure to the apple orchard with some girlfriends a few weeks ago, I spied more than a few people wearing it and I knew it was a must have.  It’s a slightly classier version than the one I owned in 6th grade.  Does anyone else remember Old Navy Tech Vests?  Because I do.  I didn’t own one, mine was a JC Penney Knock Off, but there is a 100% chance that I wore it for school pictures.  I think that my middle school self would be very proud that we have come full circle and that I still chose blue.

Have you bought anything lately that you have just loved?

PSA: BOGO Blizzard Coupons from Dairy Queen

Marcus and I have had more than a few dates this summer that involved us walking to the Dairy Queen about a mile up the road to get some ice cream.  That, in my opinion, is the perfect summer date because there is absolutely no chance that we would ever set forth on such a hike in the winter.  Well, really, we don’t do any hiking at all but you know what I mean.

This may be old news to the rest of you, but I just registered this week so I thought I would share.  Apparently Dairy Queen has a Blizzard Fan Club and if you sign up, they send you BOGO Blizzard coupons.  Since those are really the only reason to go to DQ in the first place (unless, of course, you are sourcing An Ice Cream Cake), it’s a money saver.

To sign up, click here.

No, Dairy Queen doesn’t know who I am, I just wanted to help my friends save money.

Scotches and Stuff

I suppose since it has nearly been two months, it’s time to discuss Scotch once more.

I finally managed to finish my first bottle of Scotch, which was a point of pride for me.  I felt like when we bought it there was a 50% chance that I would stay committed to the cause and a 50% chance that we would end up with a $30 bottle of half-finished Scotch.

Good news = The Scotch is Gone!  Bad news = The Scotch is Gone.

I was obviously interested when Dad texted me to say that he had discovered  Trader Joe’s house-line of Scotches.  Since Marcus and I are big buyers of Two Buck Chuck, I of course had to give these bottles a try.  Plus, they are manufactured/bottled in Scotland so they are legitimate Scotch Whiskeys.

Seriously, everybody wins.

I told Marcus that my In Case Of Emergency Plan if they tasted like lighter fluid was to use them to make The Pioneer Woman’s Peach-Whiskey Barbeque Chicken.  Always good to have a fail safe plan.

The actual bottle I had set out in search of was the Islay Storm.  I am oddly a big fan of Islay Scotches and those happen to be a bit pricey.

Scotch 2

This bottle = $20 only.  To summarize the flavors, it tastes like a campfire in a delicious way.  I think it’s what is described in most circles as “peat.”  Let’s also take a moment right now to remember that I don’t exactly have what anyone would consider a developed palate and that my ability to identify flavors is basic at best.

Since I was there and the cashier was being a hustler, I also grabbed a bottle of their Blended Scotch.Scotch 1

The $9.99 price did not hurt.  This bottle is a much easier sip (vastly smoother in comparison than what you see in Islay Scotches).  I would say it’s good for drinking, good for flasking, or good for mixing into other Whiskey cocktails.

For a grand total of $30, I was able to source both bottles for less than the price of Glenfidditch 12.  That’s not a bad propostion.



New Possessions

Naturally, the day after I write about family dinner, we end up going home.

For dinner.

The Universe is just tricky like that.

Not that I’m complaining.  I was in absolutely no mood to cook.  And Olive Chicken and a Baked Potato with few glasses of Champagne is always better than take-out.

I’ll do pretty much anything for a good, salt-crusted spud with a glass of bubbly.

How classy, I know.  Part of me wonders if I’m setting the bar too low, but I just have this feeling that I’m not the only girl in this boat.

I don’t know about y’all, but whenever I go home, I invariably return to our place with an armful of mail and a bag full of new possessions.

Marcus loves this.  Obviously.

And this week was no exception.

I know.  I KNOW.  Please try to contain yourselves.

They don’t just make barrettes like that anymore.

Hell, I don’t think they’ve made barrettes like that for the last 15 years.  So that’s precious cargo.

When I discovered them in one of Mom’s Keep/Toss boxes, I snatched them out immediately.  There’s just so much…potential right there.

Do I wear them to theme parties?  Ironically?  Unironically?  Do I match them to things?  Match things to them?  The choices are endless, really, and I haven’t even gotten warmed-up.

Watch out world.

Did you rock the barrette when you were a pup?

What’s one ridiculously material object you miss from 1997?