Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Odds & Ends

Ready for a whole bunch of random? I hope so. Here are some of the things occupying my thoughts lately:

So, it's July. I assume you're making the Pioneer Woman's famous iced coffee concentrate recipe on the regular. (Personally, I like to ignore the whole "concentrate" part and just drink it straight over a ton of ice with a little half-and-half at the top.) I make and drink it all summer. It's famous for a reason.
Awhile back I just happened to stumble upon this article about hip-opening yoga poses on Prevention.com. I hate yoga, but I've been doing them immediately after my runs ever since. (I only do seven of them, but that's plenty.) I'm terrible at them, but they have absolutely cured my running hip ailments--even better than avoiding wheat and sugar did during the Whole30). If I skip them, my hips flare up. If I do them, I have no pain--at ALL--during or after runs. Amazeballs!!
This week my daughters and I are babysitting our friends' hermit crabs while the family goes on vacation. I am praying--PRAYING--that this horror that happened to my friend Rita when her son got a hermit crab a few years back does not happen while our friends are gone. Even more so, I am praying the hermit crabs do not DIE while we are pet-sitting. 
I made this recipe for dinner last night, only I added some shredded leftover rotisserie chicken to the veggie-pesto mix. SO DELISH. Incredibly good. Make it. Today.

via jcrew.com
You guys. Look at these cute J. Crew pants my Internet-friend Erika just got (on super-sale right now, btw--use the 40% off code). Doesn't Erika look fab? SHE JUST GAVE BIRTH, LIKE, TWO SECONDS AGO. Not kidding. The pants are adorable. You might want to size up, they seem to run a little small. I will have to lose my current (annual) extra seven or eight lazy-pounds before they fit me. But so cute.
So, as everyone knows, in the fall I will begin working as a special ed assistant at my girls' school on a full-day schedule. This means I'll be running around school and the playground and the bus-loading area for 7.5 hours a day rather than the mere three I did last winter/spring--interacting with, managing, and helping children with autism and/or other neuro-behavioral special needs.

This also means that, while I could get away with pretty much anything when I was only there for three hours last year, some footwear upgrades need to happen this year if I'm going to be able to do my job from 8 to 3:30 each day. This job is active and challenging, and it requires casual clothes/shoes you can really move in.

My workhorse footwear in fall-winter-early spring is a pair of dark-brown tall riding boots, but last year (before the job) when my old pair bit the dust, I replaced them with a heeled pair. That's not gonna work this year. I need a new pair of flat-heeled (no more than an inch), traditional riding-style, knee-height boots that fit narrow calves, zip on the side, don't have a bunch of buckles and embellishments, and are cut straight across the top of the shaft (not curved down like cowboy boots). Boots that'll work on the daily, with skinny jeans and leggings tucked in as well as with dresses and tights if needed. Boots that are comfortable, look good, and let me run around at school all day.

What say you, Internets? Any ideas here? Go spendy for boots that will literally last a lifetime, or continue my habit of buying low- to mid-range cheapies that die every few years? Any current faves? Feel free to email me if you can't or don't want to comment here.

via nordstrom.com
Oh--and I also need some sort of cute/cool (maybe retro-style?) sneaker that looks good with skinny jeans. Maybe something along these lines? Or maybe just some classic Vans?

via shoebuy.com

Let's face it: athletic shoes with skinny jeans = not a good look. But you can't wear boots every day, especially when it's 80 degrees in September, so..... help a girl out. Ideas?

Lastly: I just texted my BFF, who is up north on vacay and suffering cabin-regret and needs cheering up, this photo of me in her hand-me-down skirt because she's been waiting to see me in it. I told her to ignore the post-workout, just-put-it-in-a-bun, flat hair and the extra 8 lbs., and the skirt looks not so bad, right? I'm gonna give it a good home, aren't I?

(Listen, I know this is the most boring outfit in the universe. I know.)

This is what passes for entertainment in our lives these days. Texting horrible quality photos of ourselves in each other's clothes while trying to look passably groomed for taking the kids to tae kwon do in an hour (well, that would be just me), and messages pleading for rescue from mosquitoes, headaches, PMS, and uncomfy cabins in the wilderness (her). God, sometimes I love technology.

Carry on, you all!

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