Weekend Vibes, Edition No. 116: Three Words Stories + Tie-Dye.

*Pic and calligraphy above from Plume Calligraphy.

My Latest Snag: Everlane Haul.

Everlane recently sent me some incredible finds for summer, including this tie-dye tee (I’ve been drooling over tie dye the entire spring) and one of these linen jumpsuits, which will look so cute with slides. (Note: the headband seen below can be snagged here.) I am eyeing these patch pocket shorts, which have a decent length and a nice, streamlined fit (no pockets in the back).

You’re Sooooo Popular: The Scalloped Summer Dress.

The most popular items on the blog this week:

+A sweet scalloped and striped summer dress (under $90 — and nursing friendly!).

+Pippa Holt caftans. (#GOALZ)

+My favorite mascara.

+A dramatic tiered and striped maxi — perfect for elevating your backyard BBQ lewk.

+Chic, wear-with-everything woven mules.

+The most darling straw bag.

+Gorgeous toile dress (under $60!)

#Turbothot: Three Word Stories.

Normally, icebreakers are cringe-worthy affairs. But there was one powerful one I participated in while enrolled in an executive program in social entrepreneurship a few years back (…was that another life?). The professor specialized in the role of storytelling in business, and so it made sense that she prompted us to introduce ourselves by sharing our own stories. But there was a catch: I had to share my entire life story in three words.

On the surface of it, an impossible task.

But think of Ernest Hemingway’s possibly apocryphal six-word short story:

Baby shoes.

For sale.

Never used.

(Is that a shot to the heart or what?)

I focused principally on telling the story of my career: I’d jagged from aspirations to earn a Ph.D. in literature to many years in the educational non-profit space, and I summed myself up with: “Teaching, building, still learning.”

I remember being riveted by the word choices of those around me — some who played it safe, like I had, by sticking to career choices and roles; others who shared their tenderest vulnerabilities with words like “widow,” “survivor,” “dreamer.”

I occasionally play this icebreaker with myself, checking in to see how far I’ve come from my pre-motherhood, pre-writing-dense days, when I was ensconced in a profession I found equal parts challenging, humbling, and satisfying.

Nowadays, when I zoom way out and look back at myself, I see first and foremost my attachment to my loved ones, how it has become clearer with age that the only thing that really matters, in the end, are my interactions with and devotions to them. I think also of my evolution as a woman: I have more grit and stamina now, even though I am currently flagging under the emotionally crowded conditions of being over thirty-nine weeks pregnant. And I think finally of my commitment to writing, curating, communicating with and to all of you. How it has filled a void, how it has made me feel as though I am in flight — seeing, experiencing things from a different perspective, and also constantly in motion. How to corral these sideways tugs and pulls into three words, I wonder?

Devoted // creative // in ascent.

Or

Blooming // rooted // loved.

Or or or.

How would you describe your own story in three words?

Blast from the Past: A Recipe for a Rainy Day.

From an idle musing on how much I adore my father:

“…On rare occasions, my father would have a hankering for cinnamon toast — usually around nine p.m., when “the kitchen was closed,” as my mother put it, and such extravagances felt illicit.  He’d toast white bread (does white bread even exist anymore?) and douse it with cinnamon sugar he kept in a small tupperware for just such occasions and then cut it, hastily, on the diagonal.  He’d usually make a big stack of four or five pieces of toast and we’d inhale them together, often on the floor by the fireplace in our sunroom…

It was rainy and cool the other morning — not cold, exactly, but damp in a way that settled into my bones.  I’d recently come across James Blake’s arresting version of “Vincent,” a song my father loved when we were growing up.  (I believe the original song was by Don McLean, but I could be wrong.)  I listened to it three times in a row, like a weirdo, as I walked through 15 blocks of driving rain.  (It was just far enough to be a nuisance, but taking the subway one stop felt wrong.)  There’s something breathtakingly artful about the word choice in the lyrics: “the snowy linen land”?  “weathered faces lined in pain”?  And then the real kicker: “with eyes that know the darkness of my soul”?!?!  Holy cow.

And I thought about my Dad, about the recent email he’d sent all of my siblings and siblings-in-law urging us to re-read The Great Gatsby as he had, just a week earlier, concluding the short email with: “So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”  I thought about my father’s love of language  (Fitzgerald is, in my opinion, the ultimate in artful writing and I often worry that he will be written off as a thin aesthete in years to come, underrated for a time to come).  I thought about how moved my father can be by the mot juste — how he has repeated back to me on many occasions one of the captions of an Instagram I posted when minimagpie was just a few weeks old: “I can’t believe she’s mine.”  He’ll say this to me and put his hand over his heart, as if to say: “Oh, my heart.”  And I thought about how capable a writer he is himself.  How often he says the right thing at the right time — as when he told me, without preamble: “Motherhood suits you.”  Just casually, tucked into an otherwise unremarkable Saturday afternoon.  How those words have never left me.  How I sometimes look in the mirror and say those words to myself, turning my face to the left and to the right, analyzing my angles: “Motherhood suits you.”  How sometimes I doubt myself in my new role as a mother and then, his voice arrives — “Motherhood suits you.”  My own chorus. My own Mount Helicon, too.

So when I walked through the door, feet wet and heart aching, I knew exactly what I needed: cinnamon toast.”

P.S. My favorite cookbooks.

Post-Scripts: Stunning Beaded Sandals.

+Swooning over all of the stunning handmade sandals from this Greek mother-daughter-run label. (You can find some of them on sale here!!!)

+I absolutely love this tiered fruit basket. We always — *always* — have at least three or four bowls of produce on our counter: citrus, bananas, allium, and miscellaneous fruit that’s better left to ripen on countertop (i.e., mango, kiwi, stone fruit). This would make the kitchen so much tidier. (And also, did you know you’re supposed to keep certain fruits/vegetables separate? Like putting potatoes alongside onions is a no-no — they’ll spoil more quickly! — and the same goes for bananas and tomatoes?

+A sweet baby gift.

+Literally devastated this gorgeous Brock Collection blouse is sold out in my size — it’s 75% off! May have to console myself with this Brock-like frock (under $100 — incidentally, a great pick for a summer wedding, and so many of you have written requesting wedding guest attire recently!).

+Ordered this botanical-print button-down dress (on sale for under $100) — OBSESSED with the print, and I own virtually nothing green. Will look perfect with straw accessories, and it’s nursing friendly!

+A sweet block-print blouse for a mini.

+Added this to my cart as a little fourth of july surprise for mini.

+Currently tearing through this before I dive into our more substantive June book club pick.

+This dog bed is major. Also love all of the prints from the Foggy Dog.

+Lusting after all things stark white, like this elegant midi dress and this fun little romper (perfect for a bride-to-be).

+On blooming where you are planted.

4 Comments

  1. Love the three-word bio! I’d have to think long and hard about mine… if I were still teaching, I’d definitely use it to start off my graduate classes.

    Just finished “Conversations with Friends” based on your brief discussion of it here and I loved it. Put “Normal People” on hold at the library now. Other than Rooney’s book, I’ve been in a slight Gone Girl-esque phase, but have found that many of my recent reads have relied too much on the surprise twist ending, which leaves me a little disappointed at how quickly the authors have tried to surprise you/tie everything up in a nice little bow. Rooney’s books was a welcome departure from that and I’m looking forward to her other book.

    1. So glad you liked the Rooney! So fresh and, yes, “unresolved” in the best of possible ways. It’s messy, modern, truthful.

      xxx

  2. I recently purchased that same blush tie-dye tee from Everlane (and scooped up the blue one as well) — love it so much! I’m going to bust it out later today with a pair of cream linen wide-leg pants … it’s the first relatively warm, sunny day we’ve had in what feels like ages! 🙂

    Thinking of a three-word bio is tough. I think you’ve nailed it, on all fronts — especially love your more recent descriptors!

    xo

    1. Yay! I love those tees — the perfect, affordable way to get the tie-dye look. So chic!!

      xx

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