Feel Good Friday 83
Go home, Mercury, you’re drunk. I want to take a moment to send a huge thank you to Mercury for going back where you belong and coming out of retrograde. The past few weeks were a doozy and I blame you, Mercury. Thank goodness the summer solstice has happened, Mercury retrograde is over and our lives will start to run a little bit more smoothly. I am probably jinxing myself there. But this week was a good one and I’ll take it. I’ve got loads of fun stuff to share this week, including a couple of recipes, a festival, a super sweet book, handmade jewelry and more!
An Easy Cake Recipe
Last Friday morning, I asked Emmy to watch Wilder so that I could work. She decided it would be fun to bake with him and he wanted to make a cake – vanilla, of course. “Buh-lilla” is his favorite flavor. (Emmy used this recipe.) Then he decided it would be more fun to just talk to me while I worked while she made the cake. I was working while conversing with a toddler and Emmy baked her cake in the background. I can only assume it was easy because she never asked for help. While Wilder napped, she decorated it but ran out of icing. I told her, no big deal. No one around here expects perfection, to which she replied, “Dad does.” I think I snort-laughed! But then I told her she could just make it like a naked cake and skim the sides. She took one look at the weird flesh colored icing she made (she had been going for a purple) and said she was going to draw a naked body on it. I picked up what she was throwing down and told her she could just make a nipple in the center of her round cake and be all set, and said, “Too bad we don’t have any Hershey’s kisses!” We were dying of laughter. In the end, it got the sprinkles that Wilder had requested and tasted wonderful, so the recipe is a winner. The decor leaves a little to be desired, but luckily no one but Chris needs it to be perfect. 😉
Vegan Caesar Dressing
I love a good Caesar salad, but they tend to be on the unhealthy side due to the dressing. I discovered this dressing which uses tahini, garlic, dijon and lemon. The flavor is fabulous and it’s really easy to make.
A Sweet Book
I read about this book on my friend Jenny’s blog and immediately reserved it at my library. The Brilliant Life of Eudora Honeysett is the story of an 85 year old woman who has come to the end of her life with no family nor friends left. She’s made the decision that she wants to die peacefully as she wishes at a clinic in Switzerland. Shortly after applying to the clinic, new neighbors with a precocious 10-year-old daughter named Rose move in and Eudora’s world is turned upside down. Each chapter flashes back between today and bits of Eudora’s life leading her to where she is today. It was such a sweet story reminiscent of A Man Called Ove and Shadow Baby. I love reading books about the elderly because I feel for the older population who seem to get brushed aside. We need more books that share the experiences (even if they are told in a fictional manner) so that we have more empathy and care.
A Feel Good Musical
In the Heights was released on HBO Max recently and I couldn’t wait to see it! I adored Hamilton (the television version) and am a huge fan of the musical stylings of Lin Manuel Miranda. I mentioned wanting to watch it, assuming no one else in my family would be interested, but Emmy piped up. We watched it last Friday night and thought it started a little slow, but overall was a great feel-good story with awesome music! Check out the trailer below.
A Fun Festival
Last weekend was Greensboro’s Solstice Festival, which is a magical celebration of all things fairy and earthy. The first year we lived here, I didn’t go because I didn’t really know what it was. Then last year it was canceled. This year, my editor told me that it was her absolute favorite Greensboro event, so I knew I had to check it out. Chris and I met up with my friend Susel and her husband (who now live in our neighborhood- YAY!) and walked over because it takes place in a park a half mile from our home. It was super hot that day, but we had fun – and beer – and enjoyed walking around seeing people dressed up in costume with wings and fairy hair and more! At night, the festival ends with a fire finale show. I wish my phone could capture the experience, but it was incredible! Dancers twirled LED hula hoops, fire-batons and fire-hoops and it was all set to fun music. These dancers exhibited such strength, skill and poise. I am not sure if you can see clearly, but there are two people in the photo below- one young woman being held up by another.
Also, where else can you see a man dressed as a garden gnome? This guy was awesome and happy to stop for a photo.
Black-Owned Hand-Made Clay Jewelry
While at the festival, we shopped the vendors and came across Eleanor Jade, a mother daughter creative duo behind the clay jewelry offerings. As a Leo, I love all things sun and fell in love with the earrings above. After a long hiatus of not wearing much jewelry, thanks to Wilder, I am finally back at it. Fun earrings are always my favorite option and these are perfect to wear all summer long.
A Favorite Clean Skincare & EO Brand
My friend Erienne, proprietress of Some Call Me Crunchy, just launched her summer collection, Wild & Free, and it’s filled with so many fantastic products for your skin and home. I grabbed the refreshing candle shown above (a collaboration with my fave local candle shop), her “Owie” roll-on which helps relieve abrasions and bug bites, a delightful new soap, bug spray and she also gave me a summer room spray. Our house smells clean and it is clean! (Ok, so the house isn’t clean, but the products are.)
As Pride Month comes to a close (Greensboro’s festival is happening in September this year), I wanted to share this photo from a locl LGBTQ Foundation which offers immense support and a safe space to the community. Through my job, I was able to get a tour of Guilford Green this week and love what they’re doing. I consider myself an ally and just want you to know that I am a safe space, too. I just want to see people live their lives being their true selves. Don’t we all deserve that?
Solstice Yoga – Just Here for the Drinks
Monday evening a local yoga studio, Dancing Dogs, held a summer solstice practice at 6 p.m. followed by drinks at one of my favorite places in Greensboro, Bull City Ciderworks. My friend Susel and I went and I picked her up and she mentioned something about 108 sun salutations. I never read the description of what solstice yoga meant and just signed up knowing there was a reward waiting after. Well, yes, we in fact practiced 108 sun salutations in 90 degree heat and sunshine. It was a challenge, but I know I worked like I needed to because as I type this on Thursday, my arms – especially my triceps and shoulders – are still sore. While I should learn my lesson and read class descriptions first, I think it’s actually for the best that I went into it blindly.
And afterwards, we each got a cider and stickers! That was enough to make me happy. I had the Up Cide Down which was pineapple flavored and tasted so wonderfully crisp and refreshing after my “hot yoga” experience.
Life’s Little Moments
We had the opportunity through work to attend a Greensboro Grasshoppers game. Sawyer had Drivers Ed online and Emmy was not feeling well, so Chris and I just took Wilder and met up with my work fam. Despite the photo above, Wilder had an excellent time and especially loved all of the stadium rock. He did not love sitting on the statue grasshopper’s lap, as you can see. I am sure this traumatic event will one day be discussed in therapy. I do my best to entertain my children’s future therapists.
Lastly, I took my first born out for some mother-son time this week and we hit up the Great Blue Heron Trail at Haw River State Park. It was a pretty and easy 3.2 mile loop, but I was really just there for the company. We only have three more summers before Sawyer leaves for college and I want to make sure they’re filled with some special moments and good memories.
While there, we saw so many of these black and teal dragonflies and although they were plentiful, they felt especially magical to me.
We also saw an abundance of wildflowers. As a child, I used to pick flowers every chance I could, so they always bring a nostalgic smile to my face.
And with those lovely wildflowers, I will leave you. Hopefully they remind you to bloom where you are and to live your life wildly and freely as your true self. Happy weekend, friend!