Life In General

Why I Write

Rifle Paper Peony Card

When I was a little girl, my grandmother would sit me down at the kitchen table with a pen and a sheet of paper. She’d give me a person – my mom, my dad, my aunt, a cousin – and tell me to write them a letter. She’d task me with telling them what I was up to, what new adventures I had gone on, and to recount all of the places we had gone in the last week.

I was maybe 7 or 8, and as I got older, I continued to write letters. Mostly, it was because grandma had taught me that’s how you show someone that you really care about what is going on in their lives. It shows you took the time to sit down, organize your thoughts, and then carefully place them on the page.

It was a time before computers consumed our lives. Before we used auto correct for everything. When I could type out a letter on the typewriter or in an ancient version of Microsoft Word, but chose not to. Why? Because it meant more.

When I was in college, my grandmother would write me letters occasionally and I’d try to set aside the time to respond. When I studied abroad in France for a semester, I returned those letters more frequently. But as I got older, left college, took on the real world, I forgot about handwriting letters.

I forgot to take the time to show people I cared.

Why not send them an email? Because it’s impersonal. It would take me 2 minutes to write an email. It might get lost in their Junk Mail. It might never be opened.

However, when someone opens their mailbox and they get a letter, they know the person took the time. They took the time to pick out the card or paper to write the letter on. The time to write an address on the envelope. The time to get a stamp. The time to physically drop the letter at a mail box.

So that’s why I’m writing. I’ve hand written eight letters in 2016 so far. Some thank you cards, some just because, and a few just to tell a few people that I miss having them in my life.

We can change how people communicate. We can put down the phones, stop texting so much, and get out from behind the computer screens. Get a piece of paper and an envelope and tell someone you care. Try it, at least once.

And if you need some inspiration, there’s plenty of pretty cards out there to choose from:


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Nerdy Morning Workouts

No more than a 30 second walk from my work is a new fitness studio, Nerdy Girl Fitness. It’s for women 25 and older. Seeing as this month I turn 29, I guess I qualify.

I thought about it for awhile. Should I go? Would I have time? Is it any better than just going to the gym on my own and using the machines, or following a video online? Who knew. But one afternoon while scrolling through Facebook I saw a post for an open house for Nerdy Girl Fitness. It was at the same time as work, so I knew I couldn’t go. I commented anyway, saying I wish I could go. I have no idea what made me do that.

But Patti, the owner, responded. Told me to come in for a free class. And if you know me, you know I don’t say no to free things. So I worked up the courage to get myself down to one of her 45 minute circuit training classes. She had minimal equipment set up when I got there: a few mats, some weights, and what looked like portable ballet bars.

Only two other women were there for the class, we warmed up, did three rounds of circuit training at six different stations. I was squatting, holding planks, doing laying on the floor style pull ups, and shoulder presses. I didn’t sweat and thought, we’ll that wasn’t that hard.

But about 24 hours later, I felt it. The sore muscles from lunges and the tense shoulders from the “pull-ups.” It wasn’t so bad that I couldn’t move, but sore enough that I knew the workout had been worth it. Maybe Patti was on to something. So I caved, got the Groupon deal that was going on and said I’d go to 15 classes (which is what the Groupon was for). This morning was my third class (including that first free one), and I actually am enjoying it. There is no grunting, no men who are stronger than me making me want to push myself until I hurt myself to keep up, and no judgement. We laugh at balancing acts we try on the Bosu ball, grumble together as we try to keep up in our planks, and compare notes about how many steps we’ve all got on our FitBits.

I’m not leaving in a sweating, soggy mess that leaves me exhausted and sore for days. That used to force me to rest for a day or two until I could walk up stairs again. I want to workout every day, and if that means circuit training with a bunch of women I don’t know while I supplement that with running at Planet Fitness, then so be it, I will do it. It’s 45 minutes of my day that lets me feel like I did something.

So I’m committed to Nerdy Girl for a while and if any of my friends want to join me for morning workouts, I’ll see you at the 9 a.m. classes!



Bacon Wrapped Baked Asparagus

A few days ago we bought a bundle of asparagus. We used to eat it all the time. We’d drizzle olive oil on it, add a few seasonings and bake it until it was crispy. I’m not really sure why we stopped making it, or really even why we stopped purchasing it. All I know is the other day we ended up with a bundle in our fridge and I couldn’t stop thinking about it.

So this afternoon, after Andy came back from a massage at the spa (I bought him a gift certificate for Christmas), I had food ready for him, included a side of bacon wrapped asparagus. We had some leftover bacon from yesterday’s breakfast, so while the chicken was baking, I threw it all in the oven on a cookie sheet and we had asparagus. It looked a lot fancier than it really was. Believe me, this one is simple to make and will make you look like a pro chef with only three ingredients!

Bacon Asparagus

Bacon Wrapped Baked Asparagus

5 strips of uncooked bacon
1 bundle of asparagus
Black Pepper, to season

Preheat oven to 450. While oven is preheating, cut off the white ends of the asparagus, where it has been sitting in water at the grocery store. Rise asparagus and pat dry. Lay evenly along an engrossed cookie sheet (with sides).

Cut bacon strips in half. Evenly place them over the asparagus length wise so they only overlap a little.

Place cookie sheet in preheated oven and cook for 15-20 minutes or until bacon is crispy. Your asparagus should be crispy, too. Sprinkle fresh ground black pepper over the asparagus and bacon.

Plate asparagus in small bundles, using the crispy bacon to create a sort of “ribbon” around the bundle. Enjoy!


January Stitch Fix Unboxing | Sweaters

Please pardon the lack of makeup, but I wanted to share my most recent Stitch Fix with you all! See, I had a few not so positive boxes lately, which really had started to turn me off of using them. But I for Christmas I got a gift card from a friend and figured that one more box wouldn’t hurt. I am VERY glad that I gave them one more chance. I think the stylists are starting to get me again!

Let me back up. The last few boxes that I got I had asked for sweaters. Seeing as I live in New England, it’s cold, and I need warmer pieces for my wardrobe, I thought it would be a simple request. What I didn’t realize is that there is this huge trend going on where sweaters have huge slits up the side of them. If I wanted my sweater to have a chunk missing out of it, I would cut them up myself. The last two times I got a Stitch Fix box, I asked for sweaters, and I bet you can guess that I received sweaters that had slits up the sides. And when I say slits, I mean the front and back of the sweater didn’t connect until at or above my belly button, which means I need to wear a shirt under my sweater to cover the exposed flesh.

It was driving me nuts. All I wanted was a normal sweater. So this time, I made a point to say I wanted sweaters that were intact, no slits, and were comfy. Voila! I got a stylist who actually gave me clothes I would purchase. Ta-da!

My January Stitch Fix

Fuchsia Fun2Fun Walden V-Neck Blouse – $44

I’ll admit this one was actually pretty cute. But when it’s 30 degrees out and I’m not one to wear a blazer to work anymore, this one had to be sent back. I have no reason to buy sleeveless tops in January.

Red Dahlya Nira Pullover Sweater – $68

This is so much more like what I was talking about. No weird slits, just a nice warm sweater. If I had more money I would have added this to the “yes” pile, but the pattern turned me off just enough to say no. Let’s face it, I’m still not down to my ideal size so bringing more attention to my body is not what I want to do. Let’s accentuate the good stuff, k?

Light Blue Skies are Blue Lopez Boat Neck Pullover Sweater – $64

This sweater is soooo comfortable! The moment I put it on I knew I was keeping it. I don’t normally wear light blue, but let me tell you, this sweater is amazing. I know the picture isn’t the best, but I promise it looks good in person. I paired it with a long gold and brown necklace and it looks amazing! Keeper!

Olive Loveappella Evie Draw String Funnel Neck Sweatshirt – $64

If the sleeves had been a bit longer I would have kept this in a heartbeat. I had no idea I had long arms until this moment. How devastating.

Turquoise 41Hawthorn Breyson Pleated Tab-Sleeve Blouse – $58

Ugh, that’s all I have to say. What is with all the pleats? Who likes pleats? What are they supposed to do for my body? Gahh…

The Verdict

Even though I only kept one thing, I was super pleased. I really loved both the sweaters, so in my mind, this month’s stylist did VERY well. If you want to see how your own Stitch Fix styling would go, visit them here (click this link) and answer your personal questionnaire to get started!