Five for Friday #47

Hello and happy Friday, friends! I hope you’ve had the best week so far! My week has been nothing but work, work, work, and then some more work. It seems like a bunch of projects have popped up in the last week or so and they all seem to have a deadline of the end of December. And that would normally be fine, but with the holidays coming up, I’ve got vacations planned and other people have time off they need to take, too, and that makes it harder to get work done with everyone out of the office at random times!

But the work will get done, and the holidays will be wonderful, and then it will be a new year and I can’t wait for 2019! This time last year I had a TON of trips planned already, and right now I don’t think I have ANYTHING planned for the next year and that is making me really happy! I love that it means I can be spontaneous and take a trip whenever I want, or I can take my time and plan an epic trip for the summer or fall. I keep seeing cheap flights to Europe… so we’ll see what happens…

one || One of my favorite people to follow on instagram eloped recently and IT WAS STUNNING!!!!!!!!!!!! Like, I don’t think I’ve ever really had the desire to just run off and get married… but… if it could look like this… then yeah sign me up! And I LOVE how they surprised their friends and were like “hey guess what we’re getting married and we’re doing it in Europe and YOU’RE COMING WITH US!!!!” So stinking fun!

two || This article on how to read more books nails it. This is what I do and it makes such a difference! I read on my commute. I keep a book in my purse for down moments when I have unexpected spare time. I listen to audiobooks when I’m doing mundane tasks. I just love reading and books!

three || Nothing beats a good chocolate chip cookie. Thanks to Emily and her team for finding the BEST recipe out there!

four || Very much in love with this coffee mug. I don’t actually need more coffee mugs because I’m sure I have 5 too many as it is, but I actually might need this one.

five || Everybody needs to learn a little broadway slang! And it can’t get any better than coming from LMM.

Do you guys have anything fun planned this weekend? My parents are coming into town (hooray!) and we’ll just do a lot of hanging out and I can’t wait! I think we’re going to try and take our family Christmas card picture at some point, and my dad’s birthday is on Sunday so it will be good to celebrate him! Have a good one!

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Yes, Even More Podcasts I’m Loving!

If people could stop making amazing podcasts so I don’t feel like I need to listen to all of them, that would be great… Just kidding! I LOVE that there are so many amazing podcasts out there! And I feel like I’m adding a new one to my “list of podcasts I’ll probably love and will listen to later” list every single day. In fact I added one to my list today. TODAY!!! When will I start listening to it? No idea! But I don’t want to forget about it so on the list it goes!

I definitely go through seasons when it comes to what kind of podcast I’m in the mood for (just like the moods I go through when it comes to reading books) and lately I’ve been listening to a lot more podcasts that have a limited number of episodes. I like that I know there is an end coming, and it makes each episode seem more special. (But I still love all my never-ending, weekly ones, too!) I’ve been doing a lot of good listening and I have FIVE more great podcasts to share with you all!

Dirty John

I’d heard great things about this one, and it was just as intense as I had heard! It would be a crazy story on its own, but the fact that it’s a REAL story about REAL people makes it even more intense! I also saw that some tv channel was making this podcast into a tv series (a limited one) and so I knew I had to listen before I could watch it!! This podcast tells the story of a manipulative guy, John, and how he was a crazy person that basically tricked a woman into marrying him, and it goes into all the things that happened with them and their families. I won’t spoil the ending, but MAN HE WAS SUCH A CRAZY PERSON!!!!!!

Serial (Season 3)

No, this isn’t a new podcast, but after a long wait they finally released season 3, which is now over. Season 3 (which was way better than season 2, btw) took place over about a year and it followed a few cases and people in the Ohio court system. It was fascinating, and upsetting, and frustrating, and eye opening to see how things go in the judicial system. The courts/judges were extremely open and allowed recording pretty much everywhere, so you really get a well-rounded look at how some trials went – before, during, and after. I’m glad that I listened to this one week-by-week as the episodes came out, because it wouldn’t feel super great to listen to all of them back-to-back. So maybe don’t do that…

Surviving Y2K

Here’s yet another limited-run podcast that I’m listening to and enjoying! As of today, it’s still not over yet, so who knows how it will wrap up! It’s from the same guy that made the Missing Richard Simmons podcast, and this one is just as interesting. It goes into different stories about what people were doing leading up to Y2K, it showcases people who did and didn’t believe that computers were going to crash, and more!

Stuff You Should Know

This is definitely not a new one… in fact it’s been around for a LONG time! Somehow I missed it before and I just started listening to it a few weeks ago! Each episode dives in pretty deep about a very specific topic, so you can learn a lot about why people are left-handed, why roundabouts came to be and how to properly use them, who killed JFK, how elimination diets work, and years and years and years-worth of more topics! The hosts do a really great job at explaining things very well and making me feel like I actually understand what’s going on in the episode.

Cool Playlist

This is another pretty new one to me, but it is so much fun!! Cool Playlist is pretty much what you’re thinking – a cool new playlist each and every episode! The host Eliza Skinner contributes 5 songs, and her guest for the week contributes 5 songs to a VERY specific playlist. Some of the ones I’ve listened to so far have been playlists for “Walking Around After A Breakup,” “Waiting in Line for Broadway Lottery Tickets,” “Dropping Off a Bag of Clothes at Goodwill (that you know are out of style but you’ll still deeply miss),” and “First Day in a Very Cool New Outfit.” Definitely some language in this one but it’s fun to hear songs I love and find some new songs I had never heard before!

 

 

Best Gift Guides of 2018

Holiday shopping can be so stressful. I like to think that I do a pretty good job at knowing what someone needs or what they would enjoy, but sometimes it’s just hard and while it feels kind of like cheating to ask someone “what do you want?” it can be a good guarantee to give something that will actually be used and appreciated. Each year I feel like I struggle buying for one person… and every year it changes! Last year, I had NO idea what to get my brother-in-law, but this year I feel like I really knocked it out of the park… whereas last year I knew exactly what to get my mom, and this year it’s just cricket sounds when I try and thing of something. (I finally broke down and asked for ideas… so hi mom please email me back with some!) 🙂

One thing that has helped me narrow down my gift choices in the past is GIFT GUIDES!!! You might be sick of them already (it seems like there are 12 new ones showing up in my feed every day) but man they can be helpful! I love seeing what items show up on multiple lists (aka the hot items of the year) and seeing what items are crazy (like, who would ever buy that?!?!). I also find it… we’ll say entertaining… to see gift guides that are WAAAAAAAAY out of my budget. Like, wow you fancy that you think this $80 thing is a casual stocking stuffer, ok. Good for you, but no.

Every time I have seen a gift guide in my feed that I enjoyed, I added it to a list and I wanted to share the best of the best I’ve seen so far! Don’t waste your time looking all over the internet – no! They’re all right here for you! Hooray!

For the GUYS:

Gifts under $50

Gifts for lots of different types of guys

15 gifts for him

Ultimate gift guide for every man in your life

Ultimate gift guide for men

Gift guide for him

Gift guide for guys

Boyfriend gift guide

 

For the GALS:

Gift ideas for her

Gift guide for her under $50

Gift Guide for her: Mostly under $100

Cozy gift guide for her

 

For the BEAUTY LOVER:

Makeup gift guide

Gifts for beauty lovers

Beauty junkie gift guide

 

For VERY SPECIFIC PEOPLE:

Gift guide for the bibliophile

Adulting gifts

Gifts for the homebody

Gift guide for the best friend

Gifts for chronic illness patients

Gift guide for the jet-setter 

Gifts from Amazon

 

For COWORKERS:

Gifts for co-workers or your boss

Gift guide for your co-worker

 

For BABIES/KIDS:

Gift guide for toys

Gift guide for the snuggle bug

 

For THE STOCKINGS:

Stocking stuffers

Stocking stuffers

(To be honest I think all of these “stocking stuffers” would be excellent normal gifts that go under the tree, but they labeled them as “stocking stuffers” so here they are on my list.)

I’m a Texas Girl Now!

When I first moved to Texas in 2015, I had never heard of Kendra Scott (I know – it’s hard to believe now!) I had never even seen any of her jewelry before. It wasn’t really a “thing” in Missouri yet, and I was genuinely confused why every girl in Dallas was wearing the exact same pair of earrings. And then I noticed that they all had the same little necklaces, too. What was happening and what was I missing?!?! Finally I asked a co-worker who was wearing a pair of those earrings (which I loved!) what they were and why they were so popular and she just looked at me shocked and gasped “YOU’VE NEVER HEARD OF KENDRA SCOTT?!?!?” Well now I had!

I spent the next few years loving this new-to-me brand, but had never purchased anything for myself. I bought some earrings as gifts for friends and family, but still couldn’t manage to spend that much on something for me. But a few months ago I went to a fundraiser at Kendra Scott for a ministry that I volunteer with and a good chunk of any purchases made went back to the organization, so I FINALLY bought myself a pair of earrings!

I was amazing by all the beautiful colors and also overwhelmed by all the beautiful colors. I wanted to get a pair that I would wear all the time and ended up going with these silver earrings – and I LOVE THEM! I seriously wear them all the time and I finally feel like a true Texas gal.

While walking through the store, there were just so many things that I loved and if I had unlimited money, I would have bought all of them! (Apparently during your birthday month you can go in and get half off one item?!?! So I’ll definitely be doing that next year. It will be hard to pick which item, though!) Here’s some of the other items I have been eyeing since making my first purchase.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6
7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12
13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17

 

My Holiday Bucket List

Now that Thanksgiving is officially over, it’s now 100% acceptable to be in holiday mode!!! To be honest, I’ve been in holiday mode ever since I got back from Boston. I’ve been putting up decorations, listening to Christmas music, and trying to plan out what I’m going to get all my favorite people for gifts this year. I am usually completely DONE with shopping by this point in the year, and I don’t know what happened, but I’m feeling very behind! Hopefully I can get that wrapped up soon (and then get the gifts wrapped up soon!!)

I love a good list, and so I thought I should make myself a little holiday bucket list this year! Life gets so hectic and busy around the holidays (I do realize that I’m saying this as a single person with no pets and no children and no significant other so how busy can I actually be but I still feel busy!) and in years past I’d get into January and then suddenly realize “OH NO I FORGOT TO DO *insert holiday activity* THIS YEAR!!!!!!!!!!” I can’t let that happen again!

I love that I can already cross a few things off this list!! I’ve got to make some Christmas cookies this weekend to take to a church holiday party, but I want to make some other cookies, too, and maybe take them to my office! My mom sent me home with approximately 74 Hershey kisses so I’m sure I’ll make the peanut butter blossom cookies (those are one of my favorites!) I’m not sure what my Christmas craft will be – I’ve always wanted to try making my own cinnamon ornaments (like these) so maybe I’ll give those a go!!