1. eos Sweet Mint Organic Lip Balm – This was left in a package on my doorstep from a mystery friend on my birthday. There were lots of lovely things, but this was one of them. My other favorite is Honest Company mint balm, but it comes in a 3-pack and I don’t love the 2 other flavors. This glides on without being cakey, lasts quite a while, and has a fresh, clean feel. Thank you, mystery friend!
2. Stainless Steel Reusable Straws – I’ve had these for a little over a year, and I can’t tell you how much they come in handy. They’re a great width for smoothies (thick or thin), and work well in just about any kind of cup (I tuck them into my Aladdin cup) or with hot or cold drinks. I love that they’re dishwasher safe, but they also come with a cleaning brush in case you get a piece of something stuck in there.
P.S. Target has had mason jar straw lids in their dollar spot the last few times I’ve been, which can convert any jar to a cup! I’ve also seen the lids at Michaels.
3. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr – I’m hosting my book club next month (want to come?) and this is the book we’re reading. It was beautifully, beautifully written. It was one of the most enveloping books I’ve read in a long time. Both main characters are compelling, and I hated putting it down at night. I can see why this book has been so talked about. I can’t wait to hear what everyone thought of it. And we’re going to have steaming cups of cider and yummy treats, so…book club-ers, please come.
4. Card Holders – We’ve slowly been working on introducing structured games in speech and occupational therapy. They require quite a lot of comprehension and understanding for all kids, but they also require patience, politeness, and turn-taking, which can be tricky skills if you already struggle in that area.
Our speech therapist had these little card holders that made playing an easy card game (like Go Fish) SO MUCH EASIER. No one was dropping cards or feeling frustrated about trying to keep track of everything. Our therapist had a LeapFrog set, but we found this one on Amazon that’s worked like a charm (and even came in the same colors as the LeapFrog one). SO great for little (and grown up) hands!
P.S. Our Go Fish game is this one, though they’re sold at Target and the dollar store as well.
5. Marriage is Funny Podcast – I’m semi-late to the game when it comes to most podcasts. Not because I’m not interested in them, but because there are VERY few moments in my day when I can pop an earbud or two in my ears without risking calamity on the home front. So, those moments are mostly reserved for after the kids are in bed and Michael and I try to spend most of that time together most nights.
In the moments I’ve been able to sneak some listening time in, I’ve loved listening to Gerard and Jessie. They seem like people you’d want to be friends with in real life. Funny, honest, smart, real, and they laugh a whole lot. Their podcast’s tagline is “The right mix of love & laughter is the best recipe for a healthy marriage.” Every episode they each choose a topic to discuss and they’re all very real, normal things, like fighting while installing a chandelier or choosing the wrong moment to point out grey hairs. Very enjoyable, not too long, and sometimes really thought-provoking.
(Note: there are a few episodes with the occasional swear. Nothing that’s burned my ears off, but if you’re sensitive to that, maybe avoid the ones with an ‘e’ next to them.)