We’re having a super lowkey weekend and I’m so looking forward to long walks with the whole fam, grilling out, and–hopefully–getting some reading in. What’s on the docket for you?
My Latest Score
This will come as no surprise to those of you who read my blog regularly, but I HAD to have this affordable, funky-print jumpsuit ($72) after swooning over the recent release of the Aquazzura for De Gournay collection. I actually JUST saw it on the blogger behind Atlantic-Pacific and she looks ADORABLE in it.
You’re Soooo Popular
Most popular items on Le Blog this week:
+My favorite lounge/pajama pants ever ($55). SO comfortable, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without ’em. No really. I wish I could wear them all the time.
+CUTE gingham jams ($39)!
+Interestingly enough, the string lights we use in our backyard! Love that so many of you are looking for little ways to spruce up the house!
+Fun striped OTS top ($78).
When I worked for Moneythink, a non-profit promoting financial health among low-income teens, I had the privilege of interacting with many smart and motivated high schoolers looking to improve their financial habits. I learned a lot from them. On the more serious end of the spectrum, I marveled at their grit, observing the determination that so many of them had when it came to making tough but smart financial decisions, becoming the first in their families to attain a college degree, and navigating the complexity of maintaining friendships while avoiding the harrowing realities of living in a heavily gang-dominated teen culture on the Southside of Chicago. I learned that many of them and their families use payday lenders and check cashiers not because they lack the awareness of their predatory practices, but because, in some cases, they truly are the best option available to them. Think about it: if you are living hand-to-mouth, work a wage job, get paid by check on Friday, and know rent is due on Saturday–what are you going to do? You’re going to go to the check cashier because banks can take up to 5 days to process/settle a check! In other cases, there simply aren’t enough banks close to them to be practical. And in still other cases, there are residual fears from the recession that banks will “lose their money” and are not to be trusted. I could write much more on the many lessons and learnings I had from working with these teens, but suffice to say that a lot of times the decisions they make that seem questionable to outsiders are shaped by the lack of options available to them.
But. On the lighter end of the spectrum. I also learned about a lot of new music by young rappers living on the Southside of Chicago. A lot of the teens were obsessed with Chief Keef (who was at the time reportedly grounded at his grandmother’s house). I wasn’t as crazy about his vocal stylings, but Chance the Rapper? AMAZING. If you’ve not yet listened to any of his stuff, do it, and start with “Blessings.” His voice is, to me, unbridled youth. There’s a sweetness and optimism to it–and also an element of whimsical silliness.
At any rate, in “Blessings,” there’s a lyric that reads:
“When the praises go up / The blessings come down.”
I listen to this song at least a handful of times a week and every.single.time this lyric gives me pause. It reminds me to be grateful. To take stock of what I have, and to be thankful for it. For those of you who are less spiritually inclined, it’s also a nudge to search for slices of joy in my own life. A reminder to stop and think about the good in my life–because once I do, I find more of it.
This seems like as good a preamble as any for the weekend.
+Do any of you read off of a Kindle ($119)? I’ve never used one, but I think I need one to read while nursing mini. Browsing on my phone is getting old. Thoughts on the Kindle vs. iPad? A friend was extolling the virtues of a Paperwhite Kindle as a “single use product” — meaning it does what it does well, and it doesn’t distract you with other apps and so forth!
+My sister-in-law is currently reading this book on motherhood by an author she heard on a podcast advocating for the importance of motherhood as a theme in literature. I’m intrigued. (P.S. — My current reading list. P.P.S. — Some of my own early thoughts on motherhood.)