Some favorites

I love Mardi Gras. Growing up, we had both Monday and Tuesday off from school. And my birthday generally fell in the thick of things. I loved the parades and beads and cups. King Cake is delicious. And the revelry is so happy and free. Next year, we’re going to New Orleans and celebrating.

A few beauty favorites this late winter include this makeup sponge holder

and this makeup sponge from L’Oreal.

I still like the Real Techniques one, but Jessica Braun on YouTube swears by the L’Oreal one. I gave it a try and agree it’s very good.

I finally purchased Chanel’s Ombre Premiere eye shadow in Memory.

It’s a buildable warm color that gives a basic, quick eye a little something special. Anna, from The Anna Edit has mentioned it a few times. I’m glad I finally listened. I don’t love orange and yellow eye shadows as much as she does, but a coppery bronze is right up my alley.

I also picked up It Cosmetics CC Cream in Fair/Light from a friend (hi Kelsey!). Paired with a dewy primer, it looks so natural on the skin.

A final favorite is food (in addition to King Cake) Pueblo Lindo pork tamales that I found in the frozen section at Aldi. Not as good as the 5 dozen black bean burritos we drunk scarfed during Anna’s birthday weekend a very long time ago, but delicious none the less.

What are some of your favorites right now?

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New in Beauty

It’s been a while, and I have some new products to share.

It has been an intermittently hot summer here on Cape, and we do not have central AC. Most days we can open the windows/screen door and get a decent ocean breeze to keep things bearable. A few days (4th of July and today) have had no breeze and an oppressive mugginess that is simply awful. I’ve changed my beauty routine a bit to cope.

While I still love the Yes to Carrots night cream that seemed so light weight in winter/spring, it is just too heavy in this weather. So, I decided to give Neutrogena a try with their hydro-gel line. It is a game changer!

It is incredibly light weight, practically nothing on the skin, yet it fully hydrates and even softens my skin. I’ve used it for two full weeks and look forward to using it every night.

Second up is Aveeno’s 60 second facial. It brightens, smoothes, and makes my sun coarsened skin feel fresh. I use it in the shower, alternating with my Yes to Blueberries cleanser. The fragrance is light but nice.

Thirdly, I finally bought a lingerie chest to store my makeup. I’ll do a photo tour of my work-in-progress soon, along with an updated daily makeup bag.

What are you up to?

10 Items

There’s a YouTube topic going around about the 10 items you would immediately purchase if your make disappeared. Emily Noelle and Jessica Braun were the two I watched that got me thinking. I’m pretty sure this is my current list. I might have sone bonus buys at the end. Also, I’m not including makeup tools (brushes, eyelash curlers, etc.).

In order of application:

1. Benefit’s Porefessional primer. While my skin is far less oily than it used to be, the center of my face stil has large pores and tends to get oily by the end of the day. I vacillated between this original version and the new pearl version. I would apply a tiny amount to my eyelids to use as shadow primer.

2. YSL Touche Éclat All-in-One Glow in B20. Chanel’s Vitalumiere Aqua in 20 is a strong contender.

3. Maybelline Fit Me concealer in 10 Light.

4. Tarte’s Tartlette in Bloom eyeshadow palette. I can not only make a lot of eye looks, but one shadow doubles as a contour powder (jetsetter or smarty pants) and another as a blush (sweetheart). A couple can easily be used as highlighters (charmer or funny girl).

5. MAC eye kohl in Teddy. It’s my perfect coppery/golden brown that smudges easily and stays all day.

6. Too Faced Better Than Sex mascara. L’Oreal Lash Paradise is a close second.

7. Maybelline MasterFix Setting Powder

8. Wet-n-Wild gel brow pencil.

9. Benefit’s Hoola Lite bronzer. I’m pale, y’all.

10. Is it summer? Fresh’s Berry lip balm/color. Is it winter? MAC’s cremesheen in Can’t Resist.

Carrot Soup

What do you do when your CSA or friendly neighbor gives you too many carrots, and they’re on the verge of going bad? You make carrot soup!

Chop up a pound or more of carrots. You can use a fancy food processor, but hand chopping allows you to find any bits that are “too ripe.” Throw them in a pot.

Add broth (32-64oz, depending on hw much carrot you have and how soupy you want it). I used chicken broth but veggue would be fine. You can sub in water for part or all.

Add seasoning. I used onion flakes, tarragon, thyme, salt, and white pepper. Start with a little. You can always add more.

Boil for 30ish minutes until tender. You can either use a blender in batches to puree it, or I used my immersion blender.

Once roughly blended, I adjusted the seasoning and added two dollops (1/2 a cup?) of whole fat Greek yogurt and blended again.

It makes a lovely soup year ’round. I like it thicker on cold days and thinner on warm days. You could use lemon juice instead of yogurt. Dill instead of tarrogon and/or thyme. Actual onions instead of flakes. Add ginger! Go wild!

It’s snowing. Again.

What is this? FIFTH WINTER? It’s too much.

Today we visited the Woods Hole Aquarium. Henry loves taking the bus down and then trying to touch the fish. In a couple weeks the exhibition center opens, and apparently it’s toddler heaven. I will report back.

I’ve been rereading the David Eddings Sparhawk books again. Reminds me of my youth. You can buy it here.

I ate this monstrosity this week. A caramel walnut s’mores brownie sundae. You’re welcome.

This is my first post written on the app. Let me know how it turned out. Have a great weekend!

Egg Roll Bowl

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I found this recipe via a friend on Facebook. She got it from a magazine (I’m not sure which). I’ve made it twice now, and I’ve almost perfected it. I’m sharing what I’ve figured out so far with you now.

Ingredients
7 oz ground pork (I’ve used chopped up leftover pork chop and thinly sliced chicken breast)
3-4 Tbl soy sauce, divided                                                      1 Tbl fresh ginger paste
2 garlic cloves, minced                                                       1 bag broccoli slaw mix
1/2 package mushrooms, thinly sliced                            1 Tbl rice wine vinegar
2 Tbl Worcestershire sauce                                               1 Tbl plum sauce

Here is my cast of characters:


Over medium high heat, brown meat with 1 Tbl Worcestershire and 1 Tbl soy sauce. Cook about 2-3 minutes or until meat is no longer pink (depending on species). I used Worcestershire in place of fish sauce (since I didn’t have any) in order to add in a little umami. 20180402_175100.jpg

Add garlic and ginger. Cook about 2-3 minutes. You may want to scale back the ginger at first. You can always add more later.

Add mushrooms (and this time I added thinly sliced yellow squash). Cook about 2 minutes.20180402_175621.jpg

Add broccoli slaw and rest of ingredients. I used duck sauce this time, but plum sauce would be a better choice. Cook another 3-4 minutes until veggies are wilted but not soggy.20180402_175812.jpg

Serve over rice, or it can be eaten straight if you’re skipping carbs. 20180402_180137.jpg

Mmmm . . . tasty.

Changes

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Or so the cliché goes. We’re on fourth winter here on Cape Cod. It is icky out. At least this snow shower melted by evening, and no one lost power. Here’s my view from morning yoga.20180402_104106.jpg

While the weather is still bitter, I’m into richer moisturizers. Normally, I use the Boots No. 7 Normal to dry night cream, but it started . . . not quite burning, but definitely not feeling great on my skin. So, I picked up Yes To Carrots Normal To Dry Skin, Fragrance Free, Intense Hydration Night Cream. It is rich, soothing, and delightfully burn free on my face (always a plus).

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What are your favorite face creams?

Double Feature

Last weekend, the Yankee and Henry went to Upstate NY to visit family, while I stayed home to go to the big semi-annual children’s consignment sale. While the consignment sale was a bit of a bust (the fall version was much better), I did manage to have a lovely weekend, relaxing and running on my own time.

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I was able to watch two movies at the theater. The first was Pacific Rim: Uprising. It was surprisingly funny, and I’ve decided that John Boyega is one of my favorite actors of this decade. Something I didn’t know is that Boyega dumped some of his Star Wars cash into producing this sequel in hopes of starting a franchise. I’m not sure PRU received enough bank to make that happen, but at least I know to keep an eye out for movies featuring Boyega. Some of the new characters were barely fleshed out, but the returning characters had interesting enough developments to make the movie feel fresh and not just rehashed. Then again, I like movies with stupid action, so I’m easy to please.

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The other movie I saw was A Wrinkle in Time. This one gave me mixed feelings, mostly because of how much I love Madeleine L’Engle and this quartet (recently I read somewhere that it’s now considered a quintet, but those people are wrong). One of the minor to some but major to me changes that gave me pause was the location. In the book, the Murry house is located in New England. The cold autumn air, the rock deposited by retreating glaciers, and the crisp night sky are integral to setting the major opening scenes. Sunny, Southern California does little to make hot cocoa seem appropriate. There’s no Aunt Beast, there’s no mention of love as one of Meg’s strengths (only her contrariness, which they drove home over and over). They leave out Jesus as one of the fighters of evil, which is just weird and unnecessary. L’Engle’s ecumenical vision of religion is integral to her books. Did they leave him out because of some of the controversy surrounding having him in the same pantheon as Michelangelo and Einstein? Or merely to keep it secular.

“Who have our fighters been?” Calvin asked.
“Oh, you must know them, dear,” Mrs. Whatsit said.
Mrs. Who’s spectacles shone out at them triumphantly, “And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.”
“Jesus!” Charles Wallace said. “Why of course, Jesus!”
“Of course!” Mrs. Whatsit said. “Go on, Charles, love. There were others. All your great artists. They’ve been lights for us to see by.”
“Leonardo da Vinci?” Calvin suggested tentatively. “And Michelangelo?”
“And Shakespeare,” Charles Wallace called out, “and Bach! And Pasteur and Madame Curie and Einstein!”
Now Calvin’s voice rang with confidence. “And Schweitzer and Gandhi and Buddha and Beethoven and Rembrandt and St. Francis!”
“Now you, Meg,” Mrs. Whatsit ordered.
“Oh, Euclid, I suppose.” Meg was in such an agony of impatience that her voice grated irritably. “And Copernicus.”

Did they leave out Euclid and Copernicus because no one would know them?

Where are Sandy and Dennys? Calvin was so bland. WHAT WAS THAT TORNADO WEIRDNESS? Or the bizarre flirting between the Happy Medium and Mrs. Whatsit? And they turned Mr. Murry into a weak, selfish, broken man. I wanted to love this movie so, so much. I tried to go into it with low expectations, but every time I tried to ignore a strange divergence, they threw in another unnecessary change. There is so much love and wonder and strength in the book that they left out. I felt short-changed. Parts of it were good. The main actress (Storm Reid) pulled off Meg’s troubles and inability to “belong” well. If I were twelve and had never read the book or knew anything about Madeleine L’Engle, I might have liked this movie, but it was too problematic to love.

Let’s Talk About Tea, Baby

Ahhh, the perfect cuppa. Mugga? I have to admit that most often I do drink tea from a mug. Partially it’s due to quantity and partially due to having a small child around. Pre-Henry, I would make pots of tea and read and pour myself a lovely china cup full. Now all I can think is HOT. SCALDING. EMERGENCY ROOM.

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Most of the time I’m at a 3 or 4. Occasionally I go to 1. But that’s in a rush or a fruitier tea. For coffee, I’m a 5.

We make the tea in this teapot, which makes me laugh every morning as it was made to celebrate America’s bicentennial. AND IT WAS MADE IN ENGLAND.4d6bbf08baefeb806896288d5188bc7f.jpg

Some of my favorite teas are made by Harney & Sons. I like their Paris blend and Tower of London. The tins they come in are lovely too and look nice on our tea shelves.

For every day tea I like Yorkshire and for heartier days, I like Yorkshire Gold. Amazon sells both, although sometimes you can find discounted boxes at TJ Maxx or Ocean State Job Lot (in Massachusetts).

Like my mommy, I also enjoy Earl Grey. I found out a few years ago, that my sisters all think that Earl Grey tastes like room freshener. Why they know what room freshener tastes like is beyond me. But CLEARLY to each her own.

What kinds of tea do you like? And how do you take it? Lemon? Sugar? Milk?