Homebody Love

After visiting an old college friend yesterday, I was reminded how much she loves to craft as well as keep a welcoming home. She put a humble, homebody bug in my brain and I spent a moment on Pinterest today finding fun craft ideas.

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A few days ago, I found these glasses bottles at Urban Outfitters for $1.99 each. I love the colors! I don’t know what I’m going to do with them or if I should even do anything with them. I might fill them with beads and buttons for crafting…
Share any ideas you may have! And, if you have any fun crafts you like to do on your day off, I’d love to hear.

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Treat Yourself, Baby!

Two (three, really) posts in one day!? What a treat for me and you! This post will be short and sweet.

Here’s a little something you can do this weekend to treat yourself: eat some tasty fruit and dark chocolate. Make your own trail mix. Drink some iced green tea. Get healthy fats, carbohydrates, and antioxidants running through your body. Do some deep breathing exercises and make a list of ten things you are grateful for. Fall asleep smiling. Enjoy yourself.

50 Facts About Ellie, part 1

There’s a YouTuber tag going around called “50 Facts About Me” and I wanted to join in. But, I’m not YouTube ready! But, I’d like to share some fun tidbits about myself if you’re willing to learn!

  1. I like things in multiples of three, especially 15 of anything. 9 and 15 are my “lucky” numbers.
  2. Because of my three fascination, I’ve actually noticed I get restless every three years and ache for change.
  3. My middle name should have been Wanderlust. I’d be happy living from town to town and country hopping as I please. [The run off of last year’s multiple of three “I need to move” craving is lingering.]
  4. While I’m still adamant I’d like to be a published author, I still secretly wish I had majored in theatre & become a struggling Off-Broadway actress, mercilessly slinging Shakespeare or contemporary theatre to those who live for that type of thing.
  5. One of these days, I’m going to learn how to tap dance.
  6. When I was a child, I ate anything that was given to me, including steak & kidney pie, or liver, or fresh mussels. I’m sure my parents still have a picture of me from when I was about 5 or 6. In my wet raincoat, I was looking incredibly feral and canine, with a hand in a bucket of mussels and the other hand stuffing a mussel in my mouth. I remember that night vividly.
  7. Now, I am much more particular about what I eat. As I grew older, my tactile sense became a lot more sensitive. I love the taste of beef, lamb, and bacon. Both my body & mind can’t grasp the sensation & action of eating animal flesh. [Rice pudding, bread pudding, and Jello as well.]
  8. I’d happily eat nothing but broccoli, cauliflower, cucumber, and lentils for the rest of my life. Those four foods are what I crave most.
  9. For someone who eats a vegetarian (with a Greek yoghurt or a few nibbles of cheese eaten very sporadically) diet, I constantly surprise phlebotomists & my doctor at how iron rich my blood is. I haven’t taken an iron supplement since I was 13. The last time I had my blood drawn, the guy doing so said “Wow, I haven’t seen this much hemoglobin in a long time. Did you eat a big, raw steak in the last 24 hours?” I said, “nope, I haven’t eaten beef since I was 11. I did, however eat a hefty salad last night.”
  10. I used to run competitively (and hard) between the ages of 12 and 18. The moment I graduated high school, I swore off running for a very long time.
  11. For my 31st birthday, I registered myself to run my first official half-marathon. This is a distance I was very capable of running as a teen and did so a few times to blow off steam. I’ll be running the 13.1 miles in less than a month.
  12. I can’t help myself when it comes to collecting books. I have a hideous amount of books I’ve bought over the last ten years that I’ve yet to read. A week ago, I made a promise to myself to not buy any more books until I’ve read twenty of the books on my bookshelf.
  13. The book that changed my life is Taming The Beast by Emily Maguire. For those of you who didn’t pay attention in English in high school, the title pays homage to my favorite Shakespeare play, Othello. Ms. Maguire’s book was jarring, unnerving, and emotional. I feel that this book came into my life just at the right time. I was destined to read the book when I did. I is a permanent fixture on my bookshelf, even if I haven’t re-read it yet.
  14. The quickest way to get me out of a crabby mood is to wave peppermint essential oil under my nose for 15 seconds.
  15. I think Mark Rothko is a genius and hope that all of you get to have a moment of peace with one of his paintings.
  16. I have an ear for (Western) European languages, even though I don’t spend anytime learning, practicing, and seeking them out. I hope that my wanderlust allows me the chance to finesse my francais and become more comfortable with my espanol and relearn conversational italiano and machen ein paar bier in deutschland mit freunden. I’m grateful to work with many native Spanish speakers. I desperately want to know what they’re talking about, so I force myself to figure out what they’re saying.
  17. I hate long, overly crafted nails. I think they are unattractive and useless. Nails that go just above the tips of your fingers are fine. I naturally assume a person with overly crafted nails don’t want to get their hands dirty or lift heavy boxes or do manual labor. With that said, I keep my nails short, and every time I try to grow them, I fail.
  18. My favorite household chore is doing dishes. I could easily live without a dishwasher, as I keep it basic and love doing dishes by hand. Some people knit. Others paint. I do dishes to calm down or distract myself on a bad day. It is such a simple chore that it doesn’t feel like a chore.
  19. As a child I hated milk with my cereal. I would either eat it dry or use orange juice. To this day, I still love Cheerios in orange juice.
  20. Just over a decade ago, I wanted to open a bookshop/cafe that featured art from high schoolers up to recent college graduates, as well as hosting a bi-monthly Salon and a bi-weekly open mic. I still do, and waxed mildly poetic about it in a post at A Life In Paperback.
  21. If I don’t have to wear shoes, I won’t. The shoes are on only at work or while I’m exercising or am in a place of business where social etiquette requires people to wear shoes.
  22. I don’t like driving, unless I’m driving long distances. I’d be happy to settle in a major metropolitan area with a strong public transportation system. Or in a contemporary commune that is able to sustain each and every resident.
  23. I’m convinced I was born 30 years late. The history of the 50’s-70’s in Western Society and amazing cultural & political changes that happened were amazing and seeing all of that happen first hand would have been amazing.
  24. I seem to always root for the underdog. Brian Kinney from the US version of Queer as Folk is my favorite underdog. He was incredibly selfish, pretentious, arrogant, and guarded. But, deep under that really hard veneer was a huge softy. In fact, I like the idea of doing a podcast about underdogs in literature, film, and TV.
  25. Video games baffle me. Sure, I understand that satisfaction of competition &  completing tasks. But, sitting at a computer or at a TV to get that kind of satisfaction doesn’t appeal to me. I’d rather have some sort of physical or financial reward for completing tasks and having a healthy sense of competition. I’d rather play a game of touch football than play Halo.

I’m not going to take up anymore space. I’m going to make this a two parter! And, to be special, Part 2 is at my other blog, A Life In Paperback. To find out more about me, wonder over there!!

Stop & Smell The…

Jo Malone Earl Grey & Cucumber

Being the English born Irish lass that I am, I’ll take some Earl Grey and/or Cucumber any day. Seriously.

When I ventured into Nordstrom the other day to see if a fellow beauty employee was working, I decided to give some Jo Malone fragrances a sniff to see what all the fuss is about. For the longest time, I highly doubted that any fragrance was worth $115 (or more). I was so exhausted, that I didn’t even look at all of the options, only the ones I assumed I would like.

The inevitable happened. I fell in love. Two fragrances stood out. First was Red Roses. As you know by now, I’m in love with pretty much anything rose. Therefore, any rose based fragrance is a winner (Stella and Burberry London will always be top in my book). But, as I let it linger on my skin, I reasoned with myself that I am happy enough to get Rose perfume oil at Whole Foods and rock that out. Sure, not as lovely & long lasting as Jo Malone, however the price plays a huge factor. I then sprayed some Earl Grey & Cucumber on my other hand. Immediately, a huge smile was plastered across my face. The crispness of the bergamot cut with the fresh juiciness of the cucumber refreshed me and reminded me of being young and enjoying summertime in England. As the night wore on, the vanilla and musk came through. All of the scents of the cologne merged together to create a sense of luxury and peacefulness.

Unfortunately, I don’t have $115 to splurge on a 100ml bottle of fragrance. I don’t even have $60 to splurge on a 30ml of fragrance. Believe me, I wish I did. I am officially a Jo Malone convert. I get it. The unique scent combinations are divine. Also, the staying power on skin is impeccable. The price is daunting, but a little does actually go a long way and without the need to touch up constantly throughout the day.

Go forth and become a convert, even if you can’t afford it. Jo Malone Fragrances are worth the momentary happiness.