Here’s the problem: impulse shopping from your phone has become TOO. EASY.
A few weeks ago Britney Spears, proud new owner of an iPhone, posted a picture of herself in a Bloomingdale’s dressing room wearing a super cute yellow dress. From Bloomingdale’s!! Jess was quick to find it on their site, and it was reasonably priced! Why is Britney in store, trying on an off-the-rack dress from Bloomie’s that comes in sizes S-M-L? Who cares- we bought it!
Hot take: this dress is super cute! On top at least. But neither of us were able to zip it up- the lace was too lumpy and the zipper was too long/awkwardly placed for any normally jointed human to do it alone. (We suspect Britney didn’t zip hers, either!)
We forgot one important detail: it’s a well documented fact that Britney is “skinny as a needle“. Lyn and Jess are 3-dimensional. So while this reached to mid-thigh on Brit Brit, there was baaaaarely enough fabric to make the journey around our actual human butts.
Also, Jess coughed the entire time this dress was on or near her face. ??????
So, back to Bloomingdale’s with you, yellow dress. It was fun to pretend we could be shopping buddies with Britney. I’m sure it won’t be the last time.
(also maybe we were supposed to wear sunglasses while trying it on? perhaps that makes it easier to zip?)
What impulse purchases have you made because of the Instagram? Any shopping app that continuously sucks you in? Are we alone in the universe? Let us know in the comments below!
Hi! This story is maybe boring! But it’s spinning around in my head, and I need to give it a place to go and that’s why our blog is named Everything & Nothings. 😉
We were only 15. I remember the day we met, but I don’t actually remember meeting you. In the chaos of a high school forensics meet, there we were, in the center of the storm, eye to eye, as if to say “hey, there you are. I’ve been expecting you”.
Officially, not my type: I was into skater boys and edgy, art weirdos. Here’s you all prepped out, heavy eyebrows, Christian Slater voice, and a smoldering confidence that would easily land you the part of “Cute Guy at Peach Pit” on 90210. We wrapped up in each other on a cafeteria table, and stuck together during the awards ceremony. We exchanged numbers.
To be clear, we very much weren’t dating. We went to different high schools and lived in different worlds. We talked on the phone, and we made out (a lot) in your parents’ basement, in your car, in between and around dating other people. You were Blane, I was Andie. We hung out, but we never really went on dates. We didn’t go to school dances or parties; there isn’t a single picture of us together. There was no big romance, no broken hearts, no love letters, and I can’t say for sure if there was really even a true friendship by proper definition: neither of us seemed to be in it for anything more than the little thrill of being with someone who didn’t make sense in our normal timelines, and that was ok. It was exciting. We understood the game. We lived in a pocket universe, floating in and out of each other’s lives like snow. You’d drive me home through the Lake Michigan fog, way past curfew.
You were a year older than me, and left for college my senior year. By this point, we had kept in touch but had abandoned the pocket, retreating to the normalcy of Real Relationships. I ended up going to the same college (unrelated to you being there- basically I wanted to go to a fancy out of state art school, and my mom said “how about UW Oshkosh?” and I was like….. fine.) but we didn’t really hang out ever. I visited you once before I was there, on a day where I was checking out the school, and once when I lived there, but I remember you being kind of a dick? I think you were full into college frat-bro mode, and I was way too busy being goth, so it was fine. We just skipped it.
Years later, I was planning a wedding. I had been with this guy, and it was fine, but we didn’t love each other. At least I didn’t love him, but I didn’t know that yet. We were caught up in checking off boxes, working down the list of things to do by the time we turned 25. I don’t know why, but you showed up in my emails. Hey, it’s been forever- what’s up? I didn’t quite pay attention to the fact that you were in an unhappy marriage. I mean, I heard you, but also, I knew you first, right? We’d send long emails, and it was like I woke up from a trance. You hadn’t been here in years, but you were the only one who could actually see me. I needed this tether: someone who knew the old me, who flashed forward in time to find a shell of the person I once was, asking me questions my close friends couldn’t, like, “are you actually happy? Is this really what you want?”
You saved me from the quicksand. I was in over my head. Took a wrong turn for a long time. When suddenly, a hand, outstretched, reminded me of the me I used to be. We chipped away at the old layers of paint until my old face was restored.
It didn’t matter that you were married; we didn’t love each other. There was no future here. Just skin and sweat and secrets pressed up against my kitchen wall.
I met my future husband later that fall. You and I, we still talked pretty regularly- you were trying to save your marriage, and I was gushing about this new guy. At first, you did the thing a friend should do when your friend, who just got out of a five year dead end and needs to eat/pray/love for a while, starts falling hard for a new guy. You reminded me that this was probably a rebound, to not go too fast or go all in right away. And for a while, yeah, you were right. But then it started to feel weird. Controlling. It was almost as if you were trying to keep me in this place where I was vulnerable. Misery loves company, you know. I started to pull away. You had gone from a trusty tether to the devil on my shoulder.
I was with my friends, getting ready to go out to the club where MB was DJing that night. We were giggling and pre-gaming and having a great time. I noticed my phone buzz, looked down, and saw it was you calling. I thought about answering, then hit “decline”. And just like that, I ghosted you forever.
My life, without you, is amazing. I have a partner who challenges me, supports me, loves me, makes me laugh every day, and is fucking hot in a suit. My career is fulfilling, and I have friends who inspire me, and push my edges, and let me dance and live through every day.
Over a year ago, maybe a year and a half, I noticed some missed calls on my phone from an unknown number. Then a text came through: “hey, I’m trying to track down my friend Jess from high school. Is this you?”
I knew immediately, but asked anyway. “Who is this?”
It was you, of course, and I threw my phone down to the couch. I didn’t want this. I didn’t invite this. It had been over 16 years of silence, and I had been perfectly fine without you. What. Do. You. Want.
Out of curiosity and nostalgia, I texted you back, for weeks, but I kept you at arm’s length. I didn’t need a disruption in my life. Was this a long-shot booty call gone wrong, and now we have to have a weird, awkward friendship??
I am not here for this.
But then, a few weeks ago, I had a thought: maybe I was the one being a dick this time. Maybe you had reached out to me because you were in the quicksand and needed a hand. I sent a text. Next thing I knew, we were planning to get together for a drink within 24 hours.
I was twisted up for an entire day. WHAT. IF. Have we ever been in a room together and not made out?? Do we have some kind of crazy chemistry that supersedes rational thought? No. Stop. I love my life, and nothing is worth sacrificing that for, even for a second. It will be fine. I turned up Childish Gambino, remembered who I am, and rolled into the bar. Shooing away the host with a “hi, I’m meeting someone”, I recognized you immediately across the room.
Think about your good friends, the ones who have been around seemingly forever. If time is a river, as Steve Winwood suggests, slowly carving out stone into canyons, we watch our friends evolve and change and become polished in certain ways and cracked in others, but constantly; changing, imperceptibly, before our eyes. When you skip ahead 18 years, it’s like a flash flood that gives way to a landslide. The landscape has suddenly changed. It’s still a bit familiar and you remember what it used to look like (maybe?), but it’s startlingly different, and you can’t quite picture how it was, or what’s missing, exactly.
You’re just…. a guy. Not the devil at all, as it turns out. And you know what? It was nice to see you. It was easy to catch up. You showed me pictures of your kids. I showed you pictures of my cats. You still have that voice, but I can’t help but feel like something is off. Your spark is gone. You used to be larger than life, and now life seems to have swallowed you.
Don’t think I didn’t notice that you tried to get me alone: “should we go for a walk?” “want to go people-watch at my hotel?” Darts thrown wide. As we started to say our goodbyes, a huge summer storm opened up. We waited under the overhang for a break in the rain, you had a cigarette, and we realized our cars were each about 30 feet away in opposite directions. You tried to offer to… pick me up? Take me to my car? In your car? I laughed. We shared a long hug, and I ran out into the rain.
Here’s the thing though: I don’t know how to be your friend. I feel like something hasn’t been said, that maybe you’re holding out. Why did you show up after a lifetime of years? Why are we still here, expecting each other? Are you a time traveler, checking in on me? I can’t deny that by seeing you, you’ve held up the mirror; I see that my life is exactly how I want it to be right now.
But still…. I want to help? I want to try. Let me be your friend. Let me send you a joke on a Thursday, or listen to you complain about traffic, or have you bounce ideas off me. Tell me your secrets, because it doesn’t matter what I think of them. We haven’t known each other for a long time, and yet we’ve been here this whole time. Now, maybe, we can finally be real.
Here we go, cats- our first fitness experiment is in the books! We picked our first class based on a long scroll through Groupon, and settled on Canvas Club Boxing. We both felt like this would be a good place to enter the game, since both of us have some experience with bag work (Jess took some kickboxing classes a few years back, and Lyn used to be a for real martial artist!) So what did we think? First, a run-down:
What Is It?
Canvas Club Boxing is a locally owned boutique gym that offers group boxing/fitness classes. It’s a smallish space that holds a small boxing ring, a section of like 16 heavy bags, and some floor space. Each 45 minute class (we took three total) was formatted similarly, but different every time. It started with a group warm up, then you and your partner would be put into one of three groups that you would rotate through every three minutes: working on some kind of drills in the ring with pads, working on the heavy bags, or doing some kind of floor exercise (like shuttle runs, medicine ball passes, pushups, etc.) The end of the class, just when you’re thinking “it must be almost time for the cooldown!”, would be some kind of group torture, like burpees or running down the alley.
Things We Liked:
J: Right off the bat, everyone was super friendly and helpful! At 6:00 in the morning, a smiling face offering to help us was a great way to start. Plus all the other class members were nice and willing to help keep us on track, too. Generally speaking, the music in each class was great! The workouts were solid and the 3 minutes per station format kept it interesting- also I tend to dread when classes are the same/predictable, so I really appreciated it being different each time.
L: I’m definitely down for this kind of format. Switching things up after a fair chunk of time was a good way to get in a bunch of different exercises and not get too salty at any one of them. Except burpees. And it’s been a long minute since I hit a bad, and I still really like it.
Things We Didn’t Love:
J: While I totally understand that this is a boxing class, I really wanted to kick that bag! I was also a little annoyed that we were instructed to always be dominant-hand leading. How am I supposed to trick the Dread Pirate Roberts into thinking I’m a pretty good left-handed fighter when really I’m a great right-handed fighter if I never train my left side??
L: I really, really, really don’t like being pitted against other people in a class—especially people who aren’t even there. I don’t need to hear that Steve did 757 burpees in 3.5 minutes yesterday. I legit don’t care and also start wondering why I’m a terrible person who can’t also do 757 burpees in 3.5 minutes on my first day of class. (Jess and I are geminis—this has been established, right?) It’s not even that I’m particularly competitive against others, but I’m way too competitive with myself and its something I’ve been actively working on for my own self-preservation for a while. So it’s best for me to give me things to do and tell me how to do it and give me some goals or guidelines and then just cheer me on. I don’t’ want to be yelled at or told I’m not working hard enough when any normal person can see I actually am and when it just makes me feel bad. I’m definitely more inclined to want to do less reps but to do them correctly. So this was a major fail for me with one of the instructors.
J: Lyn, you totally nail this feeling about feeling like a jerk who isn’t as good as Steve! I do much better with personal cues like “see if you can do one more rep than you did the last round!”, because fuck Steve and his 737 burpees. He can keep them.
Was There A Hard Sell?
Nope! Which makes me feel like we’ll be back someday, honestly. They were so nice! Especially at 6:00 in the morning!
Would we do it again?
L: 6am is not my favorite, although once you’re up, it’s pretty ok. And there wasn’t really a time that worked for both of us outside of stupid o’clock. I really like the last teacher we had and would totally be down to talking class from her. If we went to the usual teacher—I would just have to steel myself to do me and not get shaken by triggering cues. As for the workout itself—I really liked it. A lot.
J: Yeah, same- I really struggle with getting up and somewhere by 6am, but then maybe I like being up and having all this secret personal time in the day? I can’t quite convince my snuggled-up-with-cats self of this, though. Anyway, overall I really enjoyed the class and the instructors and would totally do this as an every-so-often fun class, but I wouldn’t want it to be my main form of fitness.
How Was Breakfast After?
Being on Monroe Street, we were rich with breakfast options!! Barrique’s is a reliable, solid choice with a good breakfast selection, but Crescendo let us down with spongy toast and not a lot of avocado. Bloom, however, was the clear winner (streets ahead!), from it’s exceedingly friendly staff to it’s perfectly poached eggs. Please bring me all the sweet potato donuts.
What’s next, friends? We’ve gotten lots of requests to do something in the aerial/circus realm, so maybe! Also: should we have a podcast?? Let us know in the comments!!
Madison, you may have noticed, is a fitness town. We host the Crossfit Games. We host Ironman. We even make it on to national “fittest cities” lists. And Madison loves to run- look at how many races are coming up around here!! So it’s easy to feel like running is the thing to do- a few years ago, Lyn and I used to run together all the time!
It was a great thing we had going- we would meet once a week or so, early in the morning, at one of the two Willy Street Co-ops (Lyn lives near the east side one, I’m on the west side) and check the box off on our fitness for the day. Then, the best part and likely 90% of the motivation for even getting out of bed, we would sit at the Co-op and drink a delicious juice and have breakfast and catch up on, wait for it, Everything and Nothing.
We weren’t particularly fast or trying to win, but we kept on the grind and ran a bunch of local races to keep us motivated. Then, tragedy struck:
While running the Zoo Run Run 10k, a race we had not really trained for well (that summer was sooooo hhhhoooottttt!!), my foot/ankle started to feel very wrong. Lyn was ok with walking, because she realized she forgot to eat for, like, the past 24 hours. We slogged to the finish line, Lyn almost stole a banana straight out of the hand of a random passerby, and we declared defeat over our post-race brunch.
Turns out I had a stress fracture in my 4th metatarsal. I was benched from pretty much everything for 3 months. It worked out, though, because Lyn was also needing to take some time off running, and we were heading into winter anyway. Fast forward to the next spring: we started running again, and had a redemption Zoo Run (just the 5k this time), and I realized something crazy important: I HATE RUNNING, AND THAT’S OK. I hung up my running shoes for good.
While I was rehabbing my foot, I discovered kettlebell training, and fell in love with strength sports. Lyn still runs pretty regularly- it’s fast, she can do it wherever work happens to take her, and she gets an excuse to listen to music (she wouldn’t do it silently, and I concur!!)- but admits she only “tolerates it” and she isn’t planning to run any races or hit PRs, just happy to get it done.
This past winter was rough, for a lot of reasons, and it seems the whole city hid under the covers and ate cheese from December through March, including us. Lyn sent me a message mid-March, and echoed what I had also had on my mind: we need to get back to doing something exercise-y together, and more importantly, we need our weekly-ish breakfast chats back in our lives. I really don’t want to run, and Lyn isn’t particularly jazzed to lift. So what can we do? Well, thanks to Madison being such a fit town, we have options. SO MANY OPTIONS.
Here’s the plan: we are going to cast a wide net and grab any Groupons and introductory offers we can to try all kinds of fitness! We’ve just finished our first class, and we’ll let you know how that went in an upcoming post (along with our opinions on breakfast options). But!! We need your help! What should we call this project? And also, what fitness do you want to see us try?? We are game to try almost everything. Almost. 😉
Confession: I have a leggings habit. It’s pretty severe. I KonMaried out a whole pile back in January, and then have slowly been rebuilding my collection, because that’s just how life works. Between my job and being a fitness (and comfort) enthusiast, I pretty much live in them, and so I have opinions! What makes a good legging? Is it worth dropping a bunch of cash? Can I get away with cheapos? In the name of science, I took it upon myself to test a few popular options and gave them all a good test drive. I tried to pit them against each other in ways that made sense to me, but I’ll also rank them overall at the end of this post. My criteria is pretty simple: Are they squat-proof? Do I have to worry about my underwear? How aware of them am I? Ready? Let’s go!
Ok ok- right off the bat, I have to admit that these are really only similar to each other in that they are black with white stripes. What happened was: I was in Lululemon poking around, and the design caught my eye. I was just waiting for my husband to buy some pants, so I wasn’t really shopping for myself and passed them on by. Then a few days later, I was thinking about them. So I went back and paid a stupid amount of money for leggings, only to then have an Instagram ad start showing up in my feed for the Gap ones, which are, visually at least, pretty much the same, but way cheaper. Gap was having a big sale so I snapped them up for like $30, because why not? Maybe they’d be my new favorites? And comparing things is fun!
Straight away, I wore the Lulus to a yoga class, since that’s the whole point of these pants. Immediately, I regretted them! The waist band, as described perfectly by my friend Ann, is FLOPPY. There is no structure to it, so if you’re just standing around, it’s fine, but once you start moving, it rolls down. Especially with bending, which is like 75% of yoga. I have since worn them to work and for my normal workouts (strength training mostly), and they’re fine overall, but I do find myself having to adjust them frequently. I don’t really get the hype or why they are worth almost $100.
The Gap ones are…. fine? I guess? They look cute enough on, but at the same time they’re not mind-blowingly great. They aren’t see-through and the fabric is nice- smooth, but sturdy. I don’t love that there is an interior drawstring, but it’s necessary because these start to get baggy in the crotch after moving around in them for a while, which is annoying. I am very aware of these pants while I wear them. Also the print (are stripes a print?) is a little less refined than the Lulus.
WINNER: LULULEMON, officially because of the non-drawstring, but probably just because I’m trying to justify the price. Also my husband complimented my butt.
Again, these leggings are pretty much only similar in color. So not really dupes for each other, but…. I like this color??
I’m sure many of you are thinking “what the hell is a FLEO??”, and that’s fair! Fleo is a small, female-founded company that really specializes in making workout clothing (mostly shortie shorts) for women in strength sports. They design and manufacture in the US, and they tend to do short runs of items, which is kind of fun in a “gotta catch ‘em all” way, but also kind of annoying because they are often sold out of things. That being said, I now own 3 pairs of Fleo leggings. I looooove them. The fabric is unique- it’s almost soft, like a jersey, but sturdy and stretchy like a more robust legging, with a gentle compression. They move and breathe and I don’t even think about them, and I reach for them almost immediately after doing my laundry. Whenever I wear these leggings, they make me feel like an athlete! I super feel myself in these. The high waist does tend to scrunch down a bit while working out, but it doesn’t roll- does that make sense? My only complaint is that I have to choose my underwear purposefully, because while the fabric is beautiful and opaque, you can clearly see lines.
Aerie has some good stuff- I am a huge devotee of these bras! They can keep these leggings though. Ok- they’re not horrible. They’re actually pretty cute, and they have pockets! The fabric is pretty lazy though- no compression going on here. I’ll wear them when I don’t want to really exert myself, like if I just need to run to the grocery store on a lazy Sunday, or maybe an easy walk on a cool day, but don’t even think about getting sweaty in them- I did a few goblet squats and it was like I was wearing plastic bags on my legs!! So not breathable!!! Very gross.
WINNER: FLEO by miles and miles. They are heaven and I like giving them my money.
Once upon a time, Nike released a new line of perfect black leggings called Legends, and they were the best! But sadly, as so many fashion stories go, they changed the formula and, over the seasons, the quality declined and the cut changed. Boooo!! These Old Navy leggings though?? Pretty ace dupes! These are actually great workout leggings- they are on the thicker side, and they do have a bit more compression than the others on the list, but it makes you feel secure and non-jiggly, not sausage-y. The rise is high, they are opaque, and they stay put!! They are super reliable during a workout, and I have even worn these comfortably on airplanes and around theme parks. $26 is already plenty cheap, but they are on sale ALL THE TIME. Get some! I have several flavors, but the black ones rotate in pretty regularly.
I got tipped off to these Amazon leggings (CRZ Yoga) as “the Amazon dupe for Lululemons”. Now, I wouldn’t go quite that far, but they are pretty good! The fabric is nice (not as smooth as lulus but not bad either), they have a similar rise and ample inside pocket, I feel like they are pretty opaque, and they fit nice and secure. I find myself reaching for these pretty often- maybe because they’re navy and that seems interesting? They do shimmy/roll down a bit during workouts (especially if there is jumping around/twisting), but I like them ok. I’m not gearing up to buy another pair right away, but they seem like a good option if you want something basic and easy.
WINNER: OLD NAVY. Obviously.
AND NOW I WILL RANK THEM ALL!!! (favorite to least favorite):
Literally any other kind of pants
Now, word on the street is that Athleta should also be a contender on this list, so if they have a baller sale soon, I’ll check them out and report back. Because I bought all of these with my own money, preferably on sale.
What are your favorite workout leggings? Are there any I’m totally missing out on? (I also have a few pairs of Teekis and Onzies that I like, but I really only like those in the summer since they’re meant for hot yoga/being in the water) Let me know in the comments!
Every year Lyn throws this epic Oscar party, where we compete by choosing the winners and then seeing who gets the most right. It’s super fun, but I always suck at this for two reasons: I usually haven’t seen enough of the films to make an informed decision, and I tend to vote with my heart and not the odds. I really love movies, though, it’s just that while my head thinks I would really enjoy a lot of critically acclaimed films, the truth is that when it comes down to spending time or money on a viewing, I tend to pick something that falls more in the “fun” category. If that makes me low-brow, I’m totes ok with it. So while I am unqualified to accurately predict what the Academy will choose, I am super qualified to tell you which films of last year fit into MY award categories. Ready? Here we go!
FAVORITE OF THE YEAR: Spiderman: Into the Spider-verse
I have loved superheroes my whole life. When I was a kid, instead of having imaginary friends, I was hanging out with the Justice League.
Obviously Wonder Woman and Batgirl were my favorites, but Spiderman and I were always cool, too, since he was a regular kid, not an alien or a billionaire or whatever. Despite this love, I am suffering from serious “superhero fatigue”. I haven’t kept up with the Spiderman movies, but I did hop back in for the MCU Tom Holland one, which was pretty great. So then this animated feature pops up out of nowhere, and we were like…. what? Why?? What is this?? Well, stop asking questions and just go see this movie- it is PERFECT. Great casting, the animation is outstanding, the soundtrack is spot on, the story feels fresh (and turns the whole boring “origin story” trope on it’s head a bit) and, to be corny, I love the message that “anyone can wear the mask”. This movie was a delight through and through- I can’t wait to see it again.
(Superhero honorable mentions: Black Panther for Best Villain, and Avengers: Infinity War for Best Took 18 Years To Get Here Payoff)
BEST DIDN’T KNOW WHAT I WAS GETTING INTO: A Simple Favor
You all have that one friend, right, who tells you that something is good and you don’t even ask questions because you know she’s right? Yeah, so when Sarah told me to go see this movie immediately, I thought “wait, the one with Blake Lively??” but Sarah has never wronged me, so we just went, mostly not knowing anything about it. And guess what- she continues her streak! This movie was absolutely nothing we expected (right down to the Paul Feig director credit), and was a super fun ride.
BEST RIDICULOUS FRANCHISE FILM THAT KIND OF REDEEMED THE SERIES DESPITE BEING TOTALLY BONKERS: Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
Fact: Jurassic Park is a perfect film. Fact: Jurassic World was a shitshow. Maybe, someday, I’ll tell you all about why I feel this way, but for now, just know that I love seeing dinosaurs on the big screen so, no matter what, I am going to show up for any Jurassic Park adjacent anything, because DINOSAURS. And I like popcorn.
It seems like someone, somehow, realizing how stiff and bad the first of the reboots was, slapped the writing team and said “look!! We are making a movie about DINOSAURS starring CHRIS PRATT. LOOSEN!! UP!!”. All of the returning characters seemed to have had major life makeovers, or at least watched some uplifting Ted Talks, because they weren’t the same stuffy, trope-y bores they were in 2015. Even the dinosaurs got more jokes!! There were good side characters with actual motives!! I even cried!! It was over the top and full of plot holes (why doesn’t the elevator have buttons to the lower level of the secret underground lab even though there are clearly elevator doors down there?!!? Who is this secret partner all of a sudden??), but it was totally a fun time.
BEST MOVIE-GOING EXPERIENCE: A Quiet Place
Ok ok- so, I don’t know if A Quiet Place will hold up over time, or if I even liked it all that much, but I will say that it was the most fun I’ve had watching a movie in a packed theater. For one, nobody really knew what this movie was actually about, so we were all gripped by the story unfolding. For two, there is almost no dialogue in this movie. There is almost no sound in this movie. So very quickly, everyone in the audience had the realization that their snacks were super crunchy, candy wrappers were crinkly, and basically any sniffle or cough would sound 1000 times louder than it was. HILARIOUS. And it added to the tension, so it made the movie way more enjoyable- I’m not sure you’d get that same feeling watching it at home.
BEST UGLY-CRYING IN PUBLIC: A Star Is Born
I knew, going in, that there would be tears shed in this movie. And yeah, there were a few here and there. I did not realize that I would be full on sobbing, snot coming out of my face, for a full 15 minutes at the end though. LORD!!! It’s worth noting that when I got my concessions, the napkin dispenser was almost empty, so I only had one buttery/salty napkin and my hoodie sleeves to save me.
BEST MOVIE MY 19 YEAR OLD SELF WOULD HAVE LOST HER MIND OVER BUT AS A 42 YEAR OLD I WAS LIKE……… WHUT. : Mandy
This movie is currently 91% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes. It was technically only in theaters for one day, then went straight to video, but it kept popping up in my various feeds, so my interest was piqued. I love a good campy horror movie, and reviewers were praising Nicholas Cages’s performance. We watched the trailer and it seemed like fun, so we rented it, and…. it took us two days to watch it.
Ok ok- I have to admit, it did some interesting things. For one, we were able to easily split it into two viewings because the movie has a very distinct break in the middle, almost as if you have to flip the album (or laserdisc!) over. The first half set up relationships and the big tragedy, the second was a cocaine and demon juice (??) fueled revenge fantasy. The cinematography and use of lighting and color was very beautiful and interesting. It had 80’s flavor, cults, and demons. Nicholas Cage really did deliver quite the performance! The only problem was…. watching it was painful. Slow. WTF-y. Two hours we wished we had back.
BEST SNOOZAROO: Oceans 8
WHY. Why is this a movie?? Here is the plot: Oh hey! Let’s get a bunch of beautiful famous ladies to be in a heist movie where everything pretty much goes according to plan and they get away with it! Because LADIES!! This movie was so boring that, months later, my husband was absolutely convinced that we had never seen it. We had. Oh, we had. If you want a good heist movie, check out Ant-Man and The Wasp, which was tons of fun and features a giant Paul Rudd.
What movies did you love this year? Which ones made you fall asleep? Which Oscar contenders are you waiting to stream? (I’m looking forward to finally catching Can You Ever Forgive Me but TBH I’ll probably skip Roma and Vice)
Another year is in the books, and you know we LOOOOOOOVE a good round-up of favorites! We’ve got beauty we can’t stop reaching for, life changing products, and things that just make life better. And away! We! Go!
Pamela gifted this to me last year, and as winter tries to turn me into dust, this stuff is a lifesaver. I put it on my lips every night before bed, and it’s still a little bit there in the morning! It’s also great for those dry spots that show up around your nose, or cuticles, or basically anywhere. I hope to never be without it!
I know Lyn has gotten us all to buy something Fenty over the past year or so, and with good reason: this shit is bananas. I picked up the shade Uncuffed during one of the V.I.B. events late last year, and it is PERFECTION. The shade is the absolute perfect rosy mauve, which is my go-to shade for “I don’t want to look dead but I don’t want hot pink lips today” every day wear. The formula is truly weightless, and while it’s not 100% transfer-proof, it’s pretty locked in, and it fades without getting clumpy or flaky. I reach for this almost every day, and it lasts through coffee and lunch and life.
While I love the Kat Von D Brow Struck Dimension powder and think it’s seriously a stand out this year in the world of brow products, I find myself reaching for this $4 pencil nearly every day. It applies soooo quickly and easily and lasts all day. KVD comes out to play if I’m being fancy, but this guy is my ride or die right now.
Early in the year, I was maybe 85% thinking about making the switch to menstrual cups; when Pamela told me she was switching, it was enough to make me take the plunge. After trying an ok, but not quite right cup the first go around, I found the Saalt cup on Amazon and it is my glass slipper. I like the Saalt because it is a softer silicone, made for “”active women. It’s totally comfortable, and haven’t had any leak issues despite deadlifting, working on my feet, dancing, sleeping… whatever. Plus, it just feels… well, less gross overall!! They last for years, so a bonus is that it feels great to not be throwing/flushing so much (including dolla bills) away. I also like that the company is owned by women who give back to women who may not have access to period care. I am seriously mad I got all the way to my 40’s before realizing cups are the way to go BTW- once you get past the learning curve (and yeah, it for sure takes a cycle or three to get the hang of it), my period is no longer such a pain in the ass. Well, obviously it still is a little, but for sure way less of one.
I have gone through about 17000 variations of arm bands, pockets, bluetooth devices, and fanny packs trying to listen to music or podcasts at the gym. My husband finally convinced me to YOLO and buy a pair of AirPods, and they are PURE WIZARDRY. I don’t even know why I resisted for so long. I haven’t ever liked the earbuds that come with Apple products, but somehow these feel mostly invisible in my ears, and yeah, they don’t fall out! I use them everywhere, too- not just the gym. Washing dishes? AirPods. Cleaning my office? AirPods. Grocery shopping? AirPods. The charge lasts forever- did you know they charge right in the case?? I probably charge them once a week or so, but I’ve never even come close to draining them. If I had any complaints, it’s that I wish they would get just a tiny bit louder, but it’s probably better for my health if they don’t. 😉
For whatever reason, I, along with the hipsters, can’t get enough of sparkling water lately. BUT HAVE YOU TRIED SPINDRIFT?? It is sparkling water with real juice squeezed in!! Not a lot- just like, if you squeezed a lemon wedge into your drink. It’s enough, though, to make it crazy good. Like, CRAZY good. Does it add a few calories? Sure, but the worst offender (grapefruit) only has 15 calories per can. I haven’t gotten my hands on every flavor yet (so far I’ve only found it at Target and Costco), but the blackberry and grapefruit are worth having in your fridge AT ALL TIMES.
Drunk Elephant, everything: Okay–maybe not EVERYTHING–but a lot. This girl ain’t loyal when it comes to skin care products and I’m notorious for bouncing around and trying lots of things to see what’s magic. Well–I think Drunk Elephant might be it! My top favorite is the T.L.C. Framboos™ Glycolic Night Serum. It is pricey, but a little goes a long way and the results are immediate. It’s crazy to me how incredibly different my skin feels in the morning after using it at night. I also find the Lala Retro™ Whipped Cream is luxuriously divine. Wanna give them a shot and see what you think? The minis pack The Littles™ is a great introduction to the line.
Urban Decay, Born to Run eyeshadow palette: I’m really unclear why this palette didn’t get much love when it came out. The layout is great–especially if you generally dislike the long, skinny shadow structure of the Naked palettes–this one is in squares and the rows act like little mini palettes. The color range is very unique and offers a lot of new looks. I also like that the palette itself is thin, but sturdy and it has a huge mirror so it’s great for travel. Definitely a good deal with 21 shadows and a lot of room to play.
Marc Jacobs Beauty, Enamored Hydrating Lip Gloss Stick: I tried one of these in Sugar, Sugar and then went HAM and bought a bunch. I’m crazy for these in so many ways. They are a gloss–but a stick and not goopy or sticky or messy. I think even you would like them, Jess! They give the perfect amount of reflection to make your lips look full and fab. And layered over pencils gives them even more versatility. Definitely worth the price.
Norman Kamli, Kamali Kulture Go Crew Neck Dress: This is the greatest, easiest dress of all time. I know that sounds crazy and like a huge over-exaggeration, but it’s not. It’s an instant classic LBD. It’s100% flattering, super soft, simple to pack, no wrinkle, forgiving, like pajamas but classy, any occasion dress. Put Vans on and it’s casual. Throw a necklace on and heels and it’s dressy. Grab boots and it’s somewhere in the middle. With tights–it’s perfect for winter. No tights–it’s a spring/fall/cool summer day dream. If I could wear it every day, I would. I honestly might order another one to have a back up, I love it that much.
photo courtesy of shopbop.com
Apple, AirPods: Jess and I were going to do a joint review of these magical wonders, but never got around to it. (aah, life.) I agree with everything she said. I also bought them because Michael Boggs told me to–in fact–Team Boggs drove me to the Apple store and went with me to get them. I keep them in my pocket and use them constantly. They are super convenient so you can just pop them on and go. I walk a lot and always have them on, even if I’m just going a few blocks. They are also the only way I’ll talk on the phone anymore. I will legit tell someone I’ll call them back so I can grab them, if they aren’t immediately available. You don’t have to yell when talking and you can hear perfectly. Unlike Jess, I have had them die on me, but I’m also spacey about charging them. Which is silly because they charge super fast. I think it’s less than an hour to bring them back to full capacity. The only downsides are the volume isn’t super loud which Jess mentioned–I guess it’s good because it makes it so you can still be aware of your surroundings when walking with them–but on some podcasts I feel like I’d like a little more juice. When you wear them on an airplane, you have to keep your Bluetooth on to have them paired with your phone, so you can’t go into full “airplane” mode. And I do feel a little self-conscious wearing them because they are kinda douchey looking and I lose the effect of traditional headphones that say “I can’t hear you so don’t talk to me.” But aside from those few things, I can’t say enough about what a game changer they were for me this year. Bonus–I’ve had them for six months and haven’t lost them, which is huge!
Schitt’s Creek: Another shout-out to Jess–she called this one and was ON ME (and you) to watch it–and she was so right. I haven’t been this excited about a show in a long time. And it’s coming back on January 16th so you have time to get caught up before the new season comes out, if you didn’t take her advice the first time around to check it out. I’m the worst at binge-watching and we blew through this faster than any series ever. Also–my closet goals = David Rose and Dan Levy is a great IG follow, if you’re not already on it.
Milwaukee Bucks: YOU GUYS!!!! We have the best team in the entire NBA!!!! Seriously!!! We are #1 right now!!! I told you not to sleep on the Bucks two years ago and I’m telling you again–get on it!!! #fearthedeer
HAPPY NEW YEAR, everyone! We love you all so much and are excited for new products, adventures and all the everything and nothings life invariably throws at us. We’d love to hear what rocked your world in 2018 or things you’d like us to check up on for you in upcoming posts.
Because if 2018 taught us anything–life can be much too much sometimes (and also that it’s okay to declare “it’s my turn to take a selfish!”)–and 2019 could be more of the same.
Have you noticed something going on?? Something in the freezer section of the grocery store?? So many “ice creams” are now trying to be all “hey! Hey! I’m totes healthy! You can eat the whole pint and it won’t blow your calorie budget for the day AND you can get some protein! Do it! Dooooo iiiiiitttt!! Ice cream for health!!”
I mean, it sounds good, but also a little bit like a clown trying to lure me into a van with candy. Are they worth the hype? I caught about 700* people buying Halo Top the last time I was at the grocery store, so maybe there’s something to it. Let’s try a bunch and find out!
Halo Top was invented because the founder was hypoglycemic and wanted a delicious dessert that wouldn’t spike his insulin, which is a valid reason to make such a thing. Somewhere along the line, fitness influencers and Crossfitters adopted it (22 grams of protein in a pint! #gainz) and it has become crazy popular. I mean, have you seen how much freezer real estate it gets at the store?? They even sell it at Walgreens!
My husband has some dietary reasons to avoid huge amounts of sugar as well, so it seems like there’s always a pint or two of Halo Top in our freezer- this one was easy to check off the list! I will agree that it is a pretty good ice cream replica, and a bonus is that it comes in a billion flavors, and even a few non-dairy alternatives, so there’s something for everyone. BUT it is sweetened with stevia, and I hate stevia. Like, haaaaaate it. For one, I really don’t like how it tastes, but even if I could get past that, if I eat stevia, it’s basically like I’ve eaten 100 very explosive bees all armed with tiny steak knives. So I get really mad when a thing says “no artificial sweeteners!!!” and then I dig deep into the ingredient list and fucking stevia is lurking around. NO THANK YOU.
So this whole stevia thing has my list narrowed down to lifestyle ice creams that also don’t have stevia, which is…. a shorter list.
“Fit Frozen Desserts!” “Lactose Free!” “Gluten Free!” “Fat Free!” “GMO Free!” are things listed all over the package for this guy. It should also include “Flavor Free!”. I tried Cookie Shake, and it was sad. Not terrible, per se- it was, chocolate-ish? But so boring that eating the whole pint wasn’t even appealing. You know it’s good when you forget it’s even in the freezer- I never finished eating it beyond the first half inch down.
Do you remember a while back when I stepped out of my NYX micro pencil safety zone and tried something new?? Well, as expected, it dried out pretty fast, but now my eyes were open to exploring all* the new stuff that has been hitting the shelves in the name of giving you some serious brow:
by “all” I mean “a few”
First, a little about my brows. At this stage in my life, I’m pretty lucky to still have some fullness, thanks to never being able to tweeze them myself- I’d try, then eventually my face would start looking like a Picasso, you know?? So I’ve always left it to the professionals (I’m a fan of threading). That being said, I am still recovering from a wonky wax a few years ago that robbed me of some of the inner part of my left brow. (Pro tip: if you’re getting a pedicure and the tech takes you into a shady back room and also takes a phone call while waxing you, RUN.) I also have a few hairs that have, um, lost pigment. Because I am old. So my main concerns are a) filling in the gaps and holes and B) tinting the greys. I am not personally into the “Instagram Brow”- it is gorgeous on some people but crazy looking on me- and I’m not quite brave/baller enough to get microbladed yet, so to the drugstore we go!
Thanks to the drudgery of winter, I’ve have time to catch up on some shows and podcasts. Let me tell you about my recent binges!
Catch up on Hulu
Several friends tipped me off to this one- I love Sutton Foster, so once I had access to Hulu, it was first on my list. This is a 22 minute rom-com about a 40 year old woman who, for reasons, has to pose as a 26 year old millennial to get a job. With Darren Star as the producer, it fills that Sex and the City shaped hole in all of our hearts. It’s dumb, fluffy, somewhat predictable, has great outfits, and is just all around delightful- who knew Hillary Duff was so lovable? It also has some great commentary on a 40 year old’s view of youth (“are you one of those millennials who’s never smoked a cigarette and thinks your parents are heroes??”), which is obviously relatable. I binged this so fast I might need to watch it again.
Catch up on Hulu
Another justification of my Hulu subscription is this irreverent entry from Julie Klausner and Billy Eichner (whom I adore). It’s about best friends living in New York trying to make it as comedians, and they are kind of terrible people, but not so much in a cringe-y way, more in a “yeah, I would totally want to do that” way. The jokes fly fast and the cameos are amazing, and hey! Lyn’s sister worked on this show, so give it some love! Also, is there a list somewhere of all Arthur’s terms of endearment for Julie?? Wait, there is!