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Friday, April 24, 2015

Have a Great Weekend.

What are you up to this weekend? Since reading everyone's podcast recommendations, I've started a new ritual: Some evenings, I'll sneak out for a bike ride along the water and listen to podcasts. (This was one of my favorites.) Also, this weekend, we're taking the boys to the Dumbo carousel to ring in the spring. Hope you have a good one, and here are some fun posts from around the web...

First off, obviously everyone saw this hilarious and amazing skit, right? Love those women so much.

"Things I definitely thought of first."

An ode to rainy-day hair.

Families ditch cars for cargo bikes. So cool.

I want to dress like this girl all summer.

Do you agree with this map of state foods? (I've never had a Michigan pasty!)

Of course Italy has a carpooling app for scooter rides.

5 things happy people have in their homes.

This woman woke up and thought she was 15 again.

An oral history of Mad Men.

What it feels like to fall asleep. (Sounds about right.)

How to make barista coffee at home.

An (adorable) reason to drink wine.

This family eats ONLY steak. No, but for real.

Hope you have a good one. xo

(Photo of Alex and me from last summer. State foods link via Cupcakes and Cashmere. Steak and Vice links via Miss Moss)

Thursday, April 23, 2015

"My Beauty Uniform"

My friend Abbey Nova (writer of the blog Design Scouting) is smart, hilarious and always has the best recommendations (including most of the products I currently wear). Here, she shares the secret to getting a good night's sleep, a life-changing hair product and the item she never leaves home without...

Amy Schumer's Brilliant Parody

Have you seen Amy Schumer's Friday Night Lights spoof about rape? It made the rounds yesterday, but in case you haven't seen it, the video is definitely worth watching. As my friend said yesterday, "Amy Schumer just pulled off the world's first-ever funny rape joke." The sketch is important, and I love that the laughs don’t come at the expense of the women.
Joking about rape "is always a risk," Schumer said at the Tribeca Film Festival. “You might look at this scene and think we’re making light of something serious, but we really are trying to educate." Bravo.

P.S. A brilliant speech about the word "gay."

(Photo via Time)

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Cooking With the Boys

Toby and Anton have always loved food (here's proof), and now they're getting interested in cooking. We'll whip up oatmeal or French toast in the mornings, but for dinner, I decided to get a month of Blue Apron family meals and really cook with them...
They liked seeing all the ingredients lined up. Over the month, we made almond-crusted cod, butternut squash gnocchi and fish chowder, but our favorite were these Swedish-style meatballs with egg noodles and lingonberry jam.
The recipes are all easy and kid-friendly, and their instructions look like comic strips with step-by-step photos and written directions. Toby loved "reading" them to me.
Before we started, I did the washing and chopping, so Toby could focus on the fun stuff. He stirred the sauce in the pan, poured in the kale and grated the pepper.
To a one-year-old, the raw turkey meatballs looked just like chocolate chip cookies. Sorry, Anton!
Alex and I devoured the meatballs with rich, creamy sauce and the pasta with kale, while the boys ate the plain meatballs and noodles. We had such a great month cooking together, and I'd love to keep it up.

Bonus for readers: First-time customers get two free meals by clicking here and ordering your first box. Thanks, Blue Apron!

(Photos by Nicki Sebastian for Cup of Jo. This post is sponsored by Blue Apron, one of our long-term sponsors. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Cup of Jo.)

Would You Wear a Fanny Pack Belt Bag?

As a sixth grader, I had a major fashion moment: I went on a bike ride around our Michigan suburb wearing a Hypercolor shirt, stonewashed jeans and a fanny pack. I felt so cool that I almost felt embarrassed anticipating how much people would be admiring my ensemble.

Cut to two decades later: People are now riding bikes, wearing fanny packs and actually looking cool. As you may have seen, designers have been releasing highbrow fanny packs this spring and calling them "belt bags." And they're weirdly appealing. Wouldn't it be liberating to go hands free this summer? You could just bring along keys, a $20 bill and a lipstick.

Here are a few pretty ones: leather, black, convertible and striped.

Would you ever wear a fanny pack? Definitely not? Maybe yes?

P.S. 9 spring trends.

Boursin Pasta With Spring Peas

This week, our month of easy pasta continues with this insanely delicious dish, using Boursin cheese from the grocery store. Danielle from I Will Not Eat Oysters shares the recipe she's perfected over the years...

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The #1 Question to Ask Before Getting Married

Ellen McCarthy became the Washington Post's weddings reporter when she was newly single and (of course) on the cusp of turning thirty. Over the next four years, she talked to hundreds of couples about what makes relationships work — and what doesn't. Her new book, The Real Thing, brings together all she learned. Caroline asked Ellen for her best bits of wisdom, and here's what she told us...

Mother's Day Gift Guide

Flowers from The Bouqs, from $40. (We also really like UrbanStems in Manhattan and Washington, DC, and BloomThat in San Francisco and LA.)
Hundreds of dark chocolate pearls from France, $16.

Mama bear necklace, $39, because she is always in your corner.
Ceramic bud vase, $35, to display one bloom or a small cluster of tiny flowers from her backyard.
Japanese-inspired linen apron, $80, because it's such a simple pleasure to have a nice apron.
Dior Nail Glow, $25, for pretty spring nails. (Here's how it looks.)
The most amazing sea salt and watermelon candle, $29. (It smells SO good and fresh.)

Chocolate asparagus, $30, since she always told you to eat your vegetables.
A beautiful, arresting book about a marriage, $11, so you can talk about it, like a two-person book club.
A giant box of organic Hass avocados and pixie tangerines (sweet and seedless), from an orchard in the Ojai Valley in California. Think: Guac and mimosas! $39.

A card about how much you love her, since that's all she really wants anyway.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Conversations With a Four-Year-Old

Four-year-old Toby has always been a chatterbox, and one-year-old Anton is starting to follow suit. It makes my heart swell to overhear them chatting away while playing. So far, Anton's conversation mostly revolves around "Tibby!" (Toby) and "big cados" (big tractors), and here are a few things Toby has said recently...

"Are dinosaurs real?"
"Are princesses real?"
"Are monsters real?"
"Are bears real?"
"Is Stuart Murdoch real?"

"I'm four and a half and three quarters."

"Can I turn seven for my next birthday?"

Toby has started picking up some of my valley-girl inflection. The other day, Anton was walking slowly down the sidewalk, when a mom pushing a stroller came up behind him. Toby hurried over and asked, "I'm sorry! Is my brother, like, totally in your way?"

"Can I wear just my underwear and belly like daddy?"

Toby: "Am I allowed to drive a car?"
Me: "Not until you're 16 years old."
Toby, after a worried pause. "But I can drive a toy car??"
Me: "Yes."

Toby still has his imaginary family: his wife, Bo, and their two kids, Matt (6) and Janna (2). But he also has another alter-ego, Peter Dachman, a bachelor who works at the newspaper with Alex. He comes over for breakfast before work sometimes.

Toby's birthday wishlist:
1) Toy house
2) Toy motorcycle
3) Toy tree
4) A little doll to snuggle with
5) Blue sports jacket, size 5

Nana: "I like the new ceiling light in your bedroom."
Toby: "It's new."
Nana: "Who got it for you?"
Toby: "Oh, the handyman gave it to me."

Me: "Toby, stop growing up so quickly!"
Toby: "But, Mama, I can't help it, it's my body."

What about your little ones? What sweet things are they saying and doing?

P.S. Toby in conversation as a little kid, and a how to teach your child not to interrupt.

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