Friday Favorites

Happy Friday everyone! So, my day so far has consisted of my toddler pooping on the floor (I’m sort of in denial that this is turning into a daily occurrence, and duct tape may soon come into play with the diaper situation, in her defense the floor poop was right outside the bathroom, so she’s getting closer at least) as well as the above pictured walk that ended very soon after it began because we were all freezing our tuckuses off. I’ve also been running around doing laundry, ordering my groceries (I could bring Ryland and Bobby shopping with me and save the tip, but the trade off would be my sanity, so tip it is!), cleaning, paying bills, and in general catching up on the mountain of housework that has accumulated over the last two days of being out of the house while R has slept (it is amazing how fast things pile up right?)

To distract myself from the chores, the forecast (pretty much cold and/or rainy for the foreseeable future) as well as the whole human feces on the floor issue, I thought I’d share some Friday favorites.

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1. Peter Chang’s Noodles and Dumplings restaurant. Have you local guys tried this place yet? If not head there immediately! It’s in the same shopping center as the original Peter Chang, but it’s super casual and devoted to the heavenly arts of noodles and dumplings (two of my favorite food groups, right up there alongside biscuits and sandwiches). It is SO good and perfect for either dine in or take out with little kids. My absolute favorite thing there is ironically neither a noodle or a dumpling, but the scallion pancake (a tiny portion of it is in the photo above). It’s $4, practically the size of a hula hoop, and just the most doughy, salty, crispy, chewy goodness you can imagine, made even better when paired with one of the many dipping sauces available (I LOVE the beet, ginger one and the spicier orange one (I can’t remember exactly what was in it other than yumminess)). So much goodness and SO cheap.

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2. Old Navy has the CUTEST kids pajamas. And since Ryland is rapidly growing out of her current pajamas (I’m pretty sure her belly isn’t supposed to stick out), I bought a few more pairs. I love all of these styles, particularly the narwal ones :), and they have so many other adorable ones. I also LOVE that Old Navy really tries to have girl pajamas that are sweet and adorable but not just covered in princesses and rainbows (now let me be clear, I have no problem with princesses and rainbows and Ryland owns things with those on them, but I think there should at least be an option for girl pajamas that have other things on them, like adorable elephants and narwals and cookies and milk 🙂 )

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3. I just finished Celeste Ng’s Everything I Never Told You and loved it so much I immediately started reading her next book, Little Fires Everywhere. She is a really tremendous writer and if you want thoughtful, beautifully written books that explore complicated issues like race and class and family, with characters that feel like flesh and blood humans, I highly recommend both of these.

4. Somebody Feed Phil on Netflix is my new favorite show, and it makes me tremendously sad that there are only 6 episodes. Basically it’s a food/travel show that follows Phil, the creator of Everybody Loves Raymond, around the world as he eats his way through different cities. It sounds like every other travel show on TV, but there is something so sweet and optimistic about it that just makes you fall in love with this older, self described neurotic Jewish man. I kept thinking that he reminded me of someone or something as I watched him eat his way through Thailand and Vietnam and New Orleans. And I finally realized that he is the human embodiment of a gangly Muppet, just all flailing legs and arms and pure joy. He is kind of the anti Anthony Bourdain. Because there’s no cool factor, no cynicism. He’s not hip or trendy. He just loves food and travel, deeply and purely, and doesn’t care if he comes off as a nerdy tourist. And I love that, and relate to it, because I’ve always felt that traveling has brought out the best in me. I see the world with gentler, less demanding eyes when I’m traveling. I’m in awe of everything, from the views to the sunsets to the fruit. And Phil is a lot like that too. Some people, when taken out of their comfort zones, get closed off and fearful. But others, people who love travel, tend to open up. We fall madly in love with places, with the people and colors and smells and food (oh the food), and it’s just a really great show. Watching the Bangkok one in particular brought so much back about that massive, unruly, crowded, gorgeous city that I fell head over heels in love with for the 6 months I lived on its borders. My dream in life is that one day I can go back. But for now at least there’s shows like that that let me live vicariously through them.

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From lovetaza.com

5. One of my all time favorite “mommy blogs” is lovetaza.com. I think she is stunning, and her family is stunning, and they live this unbelievably beautiful life in NYC, and I just love to follow their life and adventures. And so when they announced a luggage collection with Target, I almost lost my mind (first Chip and Jo, now THIS, and yes I know I am the most basic basic that ever basic-ed, I DON’T CARE, as established, I have zero cool). And of course since everything this woman and family does (procreation included, she’s currently pregnant with twin girls!) is impeccable and adorable and the perfect mix of bohemian casual style and sweet and practical family goodness, the collection itself is perfection. Just go see for yourself. I’ll give you a minute.

Did you go see it? Is it not the cutest? So, I may have ordered a few items… In my defense Target was doing a $25 off luggage sale! And Ryland and Bobby do not have bags for travel and we have two beach trips coming up later this summer. The last few times we’ve traveled I’ve sort of mixed Ryland’s stuff in with mine which is fine, but especially as the kids get older it will be necessary to have luggage that is for them specifically. And these are all so CUTE and affordable, and well, I got the kids suitcase. 

And maybe also the kids backpack, and the tote that Naomi is wearing in the photo (it turns into a backpack, and after trying to navigate the double stroller and our diaper bag on big outings, I realize how desperately parents need a backpack for long public excursions).

I know, I know. But it’s luggage. It’s practical! In all seriousness the prices are really fantastic and we will actually use these for years to come. And no I’m not getting paid to promote this stuff (although I will gladly do that, call me Naomi! I love you! And am not creepily obsessed with your life and children, at all 🙂 ) I just really, really like it.

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6. My mom does a ton of these online estate sale auctions, and I’ve thought about bidding on some items, but in general I don’t love the auction style way of doing things. I’m kind of an instant gratification person (which I know is a character flaw). But she showed me this last auction while I was at her house, and it was a guy who had served in the military overseas and had a ton of cool Southeast Asian items, including these gorgeous Thai temple carvings (see above, re: my deep and abiding love for all things Thailand). I bid, and I won! Which I’ve got to tell you is kind of like a little gambling high. I can see why people get really into this (which is probably why I should stop looking at these online from now on). I think these are so neat, and the three dimensional detail up close is really cool because there is so much texture and shape. Now the hard part is figuring out where to hang them!

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Alright friends, those are my Friday favorites. Hope you all have wonderful weekends and get to either drink some green beer or eat some corned beef and cabbage or Irish soda bread. As for us, our St. Patty’s celebrations will probably be pretty tame. As in nonexistent other than maybe putting the kids in green clothing 😉

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