Happy New Year, friends! Here are some things I’m digging this January…
My bathrobe: Jeff and I gifted each other hotel-style white terry bathrobes for Christmas this year, and it’s been a real game-changer, at least on my end. I use that sucker every single day. Our bathroom is freezing cold, so I wrap myself in my warm, fluffy robe every single morning while I get ready for work, I wear it after every shower (I don’t know how I’ve lived so long without this), I curl up in it on weekend mornings. I’d love to do a staycation night where we open a bottle of red, curl up in our bathrobes, watch movies, and sleep in the guest room.
My YMCA membership: This hasn’t actually happened just yet, but I’m SUPER excited about it. I’ve fallen WAY out of my fitness routine since the wedding (to be honest, I fell out of it BEFORE the wedding – I’ve been saying I’m the only bride in history to have GAINED weight before her wedding – ha!), and I’ve decided to splurge on a YMCA membership in favor of my work gym this year, due to several factors. First of all, my office has been relocated – my company owns two buildings a few blocks away from each other, and I’m being moved from one building to the other. However, my parking assignment will remain in my current building (bummer), and a YMCA branch is actually located right smack between the two buildings, so it’ll be right on my way from one building to the other. Plus, my work gym is located in my current building, so I could see myself using the fact that it’ll be in a separate building as an excuse not to go. The second largest factor is that I was planning on joining a local pool this summer, which isn’t cheap, especially considering that it would only be open 4 months out of the year. My YMCA membership will include a really nice outdoor pool facility minutes away from my house, which will eliminate the need to join a separate pool. Plus, the YMCA just offers more amenities than my work gym – of course, it was nice to have the opportunity for free personal training through work, but I ended up deciding that it wasn’t really for me anyway, and the Y offers more classes than my current gym. I’ll stopping in tomorrow for a tour, and I’ll sign up from there…I’m hoping to add swimming to my weekly workout schedule!
Amazon Echo: I was skeptical of this before owning one, but I’m an enthusiastic convert! Jeff gifted me an Echo for my birthday this year because my previous bluetooth speaker had fizzled out on me, but I didn’t see the point of the Alexa feature – it just seemed kind of lazy and pointless to me. Boy, was I wrong! It’s SO nice to be able to control the speaker from inside the shower, or if I’m making dinner and have dirty hands…or even if I’m just sitting several feet away. Admittedly, it may be a little lazy, but it’s SO convenient (and neat)! I primarily use it for music/podcast listening, but it’s also handy if I have a cooking question (“Alexa – how many teaspoons are in a tablespoon?”), and we have it set up to control our home’s thermostat (which I admittedly haven’t found use for yet – I still walk over to the thermostat and change it manually. But it’s still neat!) The sound quality is top-notch as well.
Frozen Christmas Cookies: I gift cookies to my family and friends every Christmas, and unfortunately (ha) had the foresight to freeze my extra cookies this year – I usually throw them away several days after returning from my family’s house after Christmas. But they retain their texture surprisingly well being frozen, and there’s nothing more delicious than dunking a frozen chewy ginger cookie into a hot cup of coffee – it softens just to the point of chewiness, instead of falling apart like a room temperature cookie would. It makes for a delicious (and too frequent) afternoon snack.
Living Proof: I had heard several good reviews of this line (primarily via Podcast advertisements) and finally gave in and bought the travel kit of their “no frizz” line to take on our honeymoon. I’m rarely very impressed with any specific hair product – best case scenario, I find them all pretty similar, worst case scenario I find them TERRIBLE. Living proof has been a game-changer for me. I have a lot of hair, but it’s fine and has a crappy natural wave – it’s curly underneath and flat on top, making it impossible for me to wear it naturally without looking like a lazy slob. While I still feel the need to blow dry and straighten my hair (I probably always will), this line almost completely tames my tons of flyaways and broken hairs, makes my ends look smoother and healthier, and seems to keep my hair looking good longer, while being light and allowing my hair to feel smooth and bouncy. It also smells great (it has that “fresh from the salon” smell to it). I recently bought the full-sized bottle of the “No Frizz” finishing serum, along with a style extender cream and hair oil, and I think they’re keepers.
Tocca Eau de Parfum in ‘Stella’: I purchased this on a whim during an Anthropologie tag sale, and I think it just may become my new signature scent. I’ve been trying to convince myself that I like more masculine, musky scents (I guess I’m trying to be more mysterious/sexy? haha), but I’ve reached the conclusion that I almost always prefer more classic feminine floral scents. This has the perfect mix of light floral notes with just a little bit of citrus.
Diorskin Forever foundation: For the past 5+ years, I’ve been trying to settle on my ideal foundation, and have waffled between a ton of different brands, from drugstore to more high-end brands. This foundation is a bit of a splurge at $50, but just a little dab provides plenty of coverage and I haven’t found anything that works as well. I’ve struggled with my skin on and off my entire adult life, and although I’d love nothing more (seriously) than to be one of those women who’s comfortable going fresh-faced or just wearing a dab of mascara every day, I just feel more comfortable wearing foundation. This stuff is super light but provides good, buildable coverage, it looks ridiculously smooth and natural, and I’ve found that my skin condition actually improves when I wear it (lots of other foundations suffocate my skin and make me break out).