Friday, July 15, 2011

Seven Things Making Me Smile

This summer has gotten off to a bit of a rocky start for me: a month ago (after a crazy two week combination of stress and no sleep), I came down with labyrinthitis, which has put a bit of a damper on my fun. Even though I still have a few symptoms, I am feeling better, and I am trying to be positive about getting healthy (2011 was supposed to be the year of being healthy). As I work on counting my blessings, here is a summer installment in my "Seven Things Making Me Smile" series.

1. If you live in New England, you know how humid things can get in the summer. I have been using up scads of dusting powder in trying to make my face look a little less "dewy" (read: sweaty) before going into work. I recently have switched to Bare Escentuals Mineral Veil. This stuff is a miracle worker: tames the moisture without drying, doesn't rub off on your clothes, and has SPF. I am very "pro". Nice thing too: Bare Escentuals has recently (at least it is recent to me) improved their packaging so that powder doesn't get all over the place the way it did years ago (which is the big thing that had put me off their products.)

2. I usually think of rum in two contexts: 1. fruity, girlie cocktails that go down too fast and then hit you too hard; and 2. pirates (gotta love pirates). However, this summer has become my "summer of rum" because I have really been enjoying both "Dark 'n' Stormy"s and rum and tonics. Neither of these is overly sweet, and both are very refreshing on a hot summer day. (Of course, I am still drinking Pimm's Cups and Bellinis; those will always be summer classics.) Rum had been out of my cocktail rotation for a long time; I really am pleasantly surprised at how much I am loving have it back! "Mmm, delicious, thank you!"©

3. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2 is coming out this weekend. Of course, I will be attending in the near future ... with bulk amounts of tissues in hand. I will never forget the day that the book came out. I went down to Brookline Booksmith in Coolidge Corner at 8:30am on Saturday morning and waited in a queue of about 12 people, which had swelled to more than twice that by the time it opened at 9am. I grabbed my copy, drove home, and began reading, stopping really only to text status updates to MEM, who has done something very similar. When I finished by 7:30pm that evening, I was a wreck, but it was a WONDERFUL story. I hope the film will be equally good. (It is getting good reviews all around.)

4. The Museum of Art at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) is currently holding an exhibition called, "Cocktail Culture: Ritual and Invention in American Fashion, 1920–1980, which I am planning to attend this weekend. My friend RJ saw it a couple of weeks ago and gave it the thumbs up. (Note: the exhibit closes at the end of July so plan accordingly if you think you might want to see this.) According to the fact sheet provided by the museum, the exhibit is arranged around themes, including: mixed company, urban nightlife, travel, day for night, and international set/club culture. I am most looking forward to the stuff from the 1920s-1940s; I love those cultural eras in history.

5. I am growing my (thick) hair out. In the summer. Which, as I mentioned above, is quite humid and for the last week has been quite hot. I am totally in love with these Goody brand "Ouchless" headbands that I bought a couple weeks ago. They keep my hair off my face and off my neck and are super cute. (The ones I bought are sparkly and look like rickrack, but they have them in all kinds of styles.) They are extremely comfortable; I wore one all day today, only adjusting it once or twice. (I also recommend the Goody "Ouchless" elastics for when you throw your hair up in a ponytail or a bun.)

6. They say that one way to manage seasonal allergies is to build up a tolerance by eating local honey. As bees don't harvest pollen more than 3 miles from their hive, you will be eating (manageable amounts of) the very pollen that causes the itchy eyes, runny noses, and sore throats. My aunties first introduced me to Bee Raw Honey a little while ago, and I seriously cannot get enough of the Maine wild raspberry honey. The flavor is just heavenly; store brand honey cannot begin to compete. I spoon it in tea, drizzle it over my yogurt and berries, and add it to my oatmeal (a practice I picked up in Ireland). (...I may have been guilty of eating it straight out of the jar too...) I recently purchased the orange blossom honey, the buckwheat honey, and the wild Maine blueberry honey in an attempt to broaden my honey horizons. They look like they will not disappoint and should arrive next week!!

7. When I was in junior high and in high school, I loved Treetorn sneakers with their preppy tennis look that also managed to be supportive and comfortable. I probably had at least 10 pairs in my adolescence - all in different colors: blue, pink, and multiple plaids. They started to become harder to find in the stores by the time I was in college, and by that point, I had transitioned to wearing Converse Chuck Taylors (because that was what the cool kids did). Recently, I had been looking for tennis shoes to wear in the summer that were more feminine than the Chucks, and I was delighted to see Treetorns for sale on and scooped them right up. (Nostalgia is great like that, isn't it?) While these are not of the same quality as old Treetorns (the terry cloth lining is missing and the canvas is thinner), the look is still the same, and that is what I wanted anyhow. They still are very comfortable, but less supportive, kind of like my Chucks actually.

So these are some of the things that are brightening my days this summer. I am sure there will be more to add as the season progresses!

Please note: these are all my own opinions; I have not been compensated in any way for recommending any products, etc. etc. All images are from the sites referred to and linked.


  1. I wonder if they will feature Dark and Stormys in the RISD exhibit? My summer liquor is MALIBU rum.

  2. Hot weather doesn't make me "dewy" either, I simply turn into a little puddle of grease! Summer is *not* my season! Maybe if I drank more Pimm's?



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