Category Archives: Workshopping

Workshopping: Nesting Edition

Well.  I hope that everyone had a lovely Christmas holiday weekend.  We spent a lot of time with family, and I also spent a lot of time with my feet up eating Christmas Cookies and/or cheese.  Great combination of things, right?

I think we did more, less insane, nesting this weekend.  Our calendar (besides Christmas) was quiet and really, continuing to sort the house out is the only thing that we have left to do.

  • We’re getting closer to selecting a paint color for the bathroom.  Here’s how our swatch wall is going at the moment.


If I had to guess, I think the blue in the lower right corner will end up being our final choice.  But we’re still deciding.

  • Santa brought me more June Lane china from the Lenox outlet in Pennsylvania, so I conducted a census of our china to figure out what, exactly, it is that we need to round out our entire set to 12 pieces of everything.  When we got married, we were already being gifted my grandmother’s china, so Marcus didn’t want to register for more.  I, on the other hand, had wanted this pattern from the first time I saw it many years ago.  There was no way I was not getting it.  We compromised by registering for a “lunch” set, but that has now morphed into what is probably the largest collection of china in our possession.  And yet, there is still work to do.
  • We unpacked more things in Critter’s nursery and it’s starting to look like an actual room that someone could live in.  This also produced an incredible amount of cardboard that we had to haul off to the recycling center.
  • Marcus set up the second Chromecast in our bedroom and I celebrated this by watching the first two episodes of Master of None.  It seems like a hilariously honest show to the point where some of the honesty is borderline sad.  Has anyone else watched this?  Does anyone else feel this way?
  • I also spent some time binge watching season two of Bringing Up Bates which is basically a show about another family with 19 kids (like the Duggars) and if you are into absolutely horrible TV like that, seasons one and two are available on Comcast On Demand.  Season three begins in January!  Who could look away?


‘Tis The Season

I have been a terrible blogger lately.  Where have I been?  I don’t know, really.  But I suppose it is time for a life update, as Christmas (and two long weekends in a row!) is coming.

My house is clean right now.

The living room has been vacuumed.  The floors have been swept.  The kitchen and the bathroom have been wiped down.  Generally, having a clean house isn’t a massive concern of mine because we clean our house on a weekly basis.  But right now it is clean and I am feeling centered.

Last weekend, I offered my house up for the annual holiday party one of my sorority sisters throws because she felt her place was too small.

Last night we hosted our annual Chrismakkuh party.  It was a hoot.  I think when all was said and done, we probably had about 40 people through and most of them were in our tiny townhouse at the same time.  We love throwing this party every year, but this year it was more special because we will not see a lot of these friends again until after Critter is here.

This week, Marcus and I will host both of our families for our first ever holiday at the townhouse – Christmas Eve.  I know that right now you are all thinking that this is of course the most traditional first holiday for a young Jewish family to host.  But my parents sold my childhood home this year, they still haven’t bought a new house, and our space is larger than theirs for entertaining.  So we will have it here.

As we enjoy this tiny break in the action, I am just happy to be at home with my feet up on the couch.  After Christmas Day is done, I want to say that I have all of five plans on the calendar between December 26th and Critter’s due date.  This is simultaneously Appropriate and Really Bizarre because I don’t know that I’ve ever not had plans like that before.  But who knows when Critter could arrive!

Despite the slew of pies I have been actioning lately, today I decided to bake some cookies because I have done zero cookie baking and I feel like holidays call for…cookies?  My first batch of cookies (thumbprint) were a total failure.  As in, the centers of the cookies fell out and I had to toss them in the trash.  This would be a tragedy, except the cookie base was from a Betty Crocker bag (I should have known better) and thus not a great deal of effort was exerted.  It was mostly horrifying as I transferred the cookies to my cooling racks and watched as the centers slid through the racks and right onto the towel below.

Not to worry, my second batch of cookies, Egg Nog Logs, were big winners.  Look.

Egg Nog Logs

I even got to wheel out my really tiny sieve for the first time so that I could delicately sift some nutmeg on top of the frosting.  I scarfed down two of them as soon as they were frosted, without hesitation.  It is safe to say that I will be making these every year for the rest of my life, such is their deliciousness (and non-excessive level of difficulty).  There’s still time for you to whip up a batch before Christmas, too.


Good morning!

I rolled out of bed this morning at 5:27 or so this morning, so I have spent the past few hours watching the sun rise, purging my blog e-mail inbox, unsubscribing to e-newsletters, and eating First Breakfast.  Now, I will type a rambling blog post because I can and I happen to feel like it.

Yesterday when I was driving to work, I was listening to Classical MPR and they played “Happy We!” by Handel and Critter seemed to be a big fan, so for the last hour I have been playing Handel’s Messiah for Critter and…they still seem to be a big fan.  Maybe it’s the heavy emphasis on the harpsichord?  We do not seem to have these same feelings for Mozart or Bach, so I don’t know.  I mean, I personally like Handel’s music, so this is not exactly a massive sacrifice on my part, but I do think it’s hilarious.

From the department of nesting/house purging, over the last 24 hours, I have managed to take a load of things to the thrift shop, and re-homed a bag of possessions with a sorority sister.  I have one more bag of books to dispossess myself of this morning, and then we are free and clear on that front.  There’s really not much else to purge at this point because I did all of that when I was switching out my closet, or earlier in the year when the Konmari bug struck.  That being said, GOD IT FEELS SO GOOD TO GET THINGS OUT OF THE HOUSE.  I am 100% positive I will feel similar feelings of centered-ness once the bathroom renovation and the nursery are complete.

I also have a struggle to pose to you, dear readers.  It seems like so many of the bloggers I used to read have either stopped posting (or drastically slowed it down).  OR (possibly worse) they have given into the beast of #sponsored postings, which frankly I do not care to read for a host of reasons, most of them having to do with the fact that I Do Not Care To Watch The Commercial That Someone Else Has Turned Their Life Into.   So.  What blogs are you reading and loving?  I need some help here.

With that, I think I must adjourn, so that I can do some power walking before Critter’s first baby shower!  This weekend feels like it’s going to move so quickly, but we only have to make it through three days of work next week and then we get a four-day Thanksgiving weekend.  Tell me I am not the only one who is just totally jazzed about this situation.



I thought I would bring y’all some life updates on a Sunday morning because it’s 6:00 AM and I can.  And, if I were to write a full post about any of these things, I think y’all would be bored to tears.

  • Yesterday, for the first time in five weeks, we finally got to use our driveway/garage.  Pro to living in an association: we did not have to organize our own re-paving.  Con to living in an association: they hired the world’s most dysfunctional contractors and we didn’t have a driveway for five weeks which was…extremely obnoxious.
  • Last night, Marcus and I had our first in-town/at home date night in a very long time.  We made baked potatoes with chili and then headed out to see The Martian.   Some things that are notable about this:
    • The Martian is the first movie I’ve seen in a movie theater in about six years.  So this was basically the most unique date night idea we could have possibly cooked up.  I used to get migraines watching things on the big screen.  But, I really loved reading the book and I wanted to see the film version so we decided to give it a try after our OMNI Theater Space-success over the summer.  I just closed my eyes during the bits where the camera work was shaky, etc. and I made it through unscathed!  Proud moments all around.
    • When I looked at my calendar to see when, exactly, we last had a proper date night in Minneapolis (as in: did not see other people or party hop), it was June 12.  It’s not exactly like we’ve been lacking for time together between our Cabin trips over the summer, fall vacations, wedding attendance, or those nights we set aside each week to cook together.  But, it really did put into perspective just how fast we have been moving since May, really.  I know that when Critter comes, we will not regret any of this, but I also continue to believe that we might actually (despite sleep deprivation) be more rested when Critter comes because we’re actually at home and staying put for three whole months together.
  • We are finally moving with the final stages of the master bathroom remodel.  We have the vanity base set, and pending the arrival of some vanity top samples, we will be able to sort out which top to purchase.  Bruce will come and demo/re-tile/install during the first week of December.  I will be honest, I am really not looking forward to moving out of my house for another week, but I know that once this project is done our house will feel so nice and it will be even better not to have to think about it anymore!
  • I ordered a new planner for next year from inkWELL Press.  The Day Designer, as we all know, ended up being WAY too big for my life (our life?).  I’ll also take the time to note that the paper quality was terrible and the coil was not great.  This planner is thinner even than the ones that Erin Condren churns out and I’m thinking that for next year it will be just the right size for me (us?).  I’m 100% confident in this because I ordered a fall mini-planner so that I could unload the Day Designer early and already everything just feels better.


Happy Sunday.

I feel like I should check in because I have not had a lot to say lately.

  • I am wiped out.  Even though I got to have Friday night to myself, between the centennial events for Marcus’ fraternity chapter on Saturday and the things I had going on today, I feel like I spent the majority of the weekend running around.  I got to see a lot of wonderful friends and family, but now I really need some time to unwind and relax.  Just like running around in Vegas, it’s really easy for me to forget that I don’t have the same amount of energy that I did pre-pregnancy.  I feel just great and then I crash.  I am still so thankful that I haven’t been sick like crazy, but at least if I felt sick I’d know I that I needed to slow down, right?
  • It was 85 here today (and 75-ish yesterday), which basically means that it was summer again.  Book Club was held on Emily’s porch and we ate dinner on our deck.  It was sort of tragic knowing that this was truly the last warm day that we will have in 2016, but what a treat.
  • We’re headed off to Chicago on Thursday so I did some serious trip planning over the weekend.  Marcus has never been, so there’s lots to see and not a lot of time. On Saturday, before the wedding, we’ll be going on a hot dog crawl with some friends which is one part amazing and one part extremely insane.  I can’t wait!
  • We are going on week 3 (possibly 3.5) of having no driveway.  Exterior repairs are something that our association handles and at the beginning of September, we got a notice that our driveway would be repaired.  We thought (based on the notice) that our driveway was simply being sealed, even though we easily have the worst driveway in the development.  But no, shortly thereafter they tore the whole thing out.  They have finally poured the new concrete apron for our neighbor’s garage, so I am hopeful that this could actually be the week where we get our driveway back.  It’s a little bit overdue at this point.
  • We haven’t made any progress on the remainder of our master bathroom remodel.  My goals for this week are to pick out floor tile and schedule the big event.  Once it’s scheduled, we’ll order the vanity.  I didn’t want to source that piece until we knew when we would need it because a ~60″ vanity isn’t exactly something you can simply stash away until a rainy day.  It will be really wonderful when that project is complete.

Have a wonderful week!


I just have a lot of things to say this morning, so let’s dive right in!

  • I have a new stain remover trick for removing grease stains from clothing!  Actually, this is really not “new” at all, but it was new to me and that means that some of you may not be in the know about this one either.  Last week, I wore one of my new dresses for the first time.  This also meant that this was the day I dropped a nacho right on my stomach.  As you can all imagine, that was a super moment and the nacho left behind a grease stain.  I was really peeved because the dress was not cheap, and I wanted my new dress to look…new.  Generally, I use Spray ‘n Wash when I’m removing stains but it is not 100% successful when it goes up against grease.  So when we got home from dinner, I spent 20 minutes on Google researching grease stain remedies.  The internet informed me that if you use dishsoap (like the kind you would have by your sink) and apply a small amount to the impacted area, rub in, allow to sit for ~5 minutes and rinse out prior to washing, it will remove the stain.  I tried it using clear Palmolive and this is true.  The first time I attempted this trick, I did not let the soap sit and it was only marginally successful.  The second time, I re-tried it on my dress AND another stained piece of clothing, allowed the soap to sit, and it worked!  The stains were gone!
  • I’ve started to sort out what I’ll all be wearing for the High Holidays this year.  Since we’ll be at a wedding for the first night of Rosh Hashanah, that only leaves me with six outfits to arrange.
  • The 19th week of pregnancy starts today and last week I declared that everything was getting harder.  Getting into bed, rolling over in bed, putting on my running shoes, actually running, DIY pedicures.  All getting harder.  I mean, there is just no competing with a baked potato slamming down on your bladder with every stride of your run.  Or breathing for two.  I am so thankful that I’ve made it nearly halfway through this pregnancy without feeling like anything has been hard but it is a big change and we have 21 weeks left to go.
  • We have three trips coming up in the next few months: Chicago, Las Vegas, and New York.  I am busy planning out restaurants for each.  Part of me wonders if I should be looking for the best cheap eats in each city or the nicest.  And then I throw all of that thinking away because we will have a kid at this time next year and what are the odds that we would be in three cities with really superb restaurants before Little Critter is born?  This also means that I need to start making reservations!  So far…
    • Chicago: Girl & the Goat, Au Cheval, Parachute
    • Las Vegas: Jaleo, Bouchon
    • New York: Russ & Daughters, Mission Chinese, El Original Tex Mex
  • I  have realized that I have literally no idea what will be on T.V. this fall and I am badly in need of new shows.  If there is anything coming up that you have deemed to be “good,” please let me know!  I like really awful reality TV (Rock of Love: Bus, Bachelor Pad, Bachelor in Paradise, Rodeo Girls), RHOBH, VanderPump Rules, and Aaron Sorkin-style dramas.


It’s the end of the week already, and I haven’t popped in to say…anything.

Truth be told, I am pooped.  After a day of feeling cranky for no reason, I realized that I really haven’t had a chance to sit down and rest in the last two weeks and that most nights I have been running around like crazy.  So I re-scheduled my diner date with Eli (which I felt terrible about because girlfriend time usually energizes/relaxes me) and declared tonight to be a night in.  It was the right choice.

So what else has been going on?

  • My trusty Target sunglasses finally broke.  They were at least two years old and on Sunday night, one of the arms snapped clean off from the rest of the frame.  So after wearing some hot pink, clown-looking, faux-Ray Bans on Monday, I hightailed it back to Target to buy a new pair of sunnies, that I happened to choose because I felt like they looked like sunglasses that Kate Middleton might wear.  Also they fit my face.


  • Related/unrelated: my hair is The Longest It Has Ever Been and it needs to be cut.  Badly.  I have an appointment next Thursday and I cannot wait.  I’m not doing anything dramatic, just cutting off the 1″ – 1.5″ of dead ends so that everything looks healthy and swishy again.
  • I ate sushi for dinner tonight and it was the greatest meal of my life.  Tuna is pretty much off limits for pregnant ladies because of the mercury content, but after doing some research, I feel comfortable eating salmon-based rolls (and California rolls, obviously) from the places I know to be clean/safe.  I’m also drinking a cup and a half of coffee every day and eating brie (made with pasteurized milk) when the mood strikes so there are all of my vices for you.
  • This weekend (shockingly/not shockingly) Marcus and I are headed up to the cabin.  I am really excited to run, and watch the hummingbirds fight for hours on end, and swim (since the weather is going to be gorgeous!).  I may or may not have called The Yellow House (AKA Lake Country Craft and Cone) to place an order for 10 Monster Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches so that we can feast like kings.