thursday reading

Beauty from the inside out (GOOP)

59 Free things to do (The Freedom Experiment)

12 Things that show you who you really are (Thought Catalog)

Also - 35 Quotes for Introverts (Thought Catalog)

Why do toddlers freak out so often? (Jason Good)

How to: thrive in your twenties (Darling Magazine)

The Happiness To-Do List  (Thought Catalog)

More reasons to be Paleo (Buzzfeed)

What does your soul need today? (Gypsy Ink)



Summer To-Do List

I don't know what it is about summer that's making me want to be more productive and creative, but I'm just going to go with it. This is my first whole summer in San Diego, and if I can't be in France, I'm going to make sure I do fun things anyway. I love routine (most of the time), but I'm getting bored with it lately, so here is my current list of things to do this summer. We all know I'll be adding things  down the road...so standby for updates. Any suggestions?

1. Be adventurous - vague, yes, but it leaves room for lots of possibilities

2. Do things outside - duh, it's San Diego.

Mumford + Sons in Chula Vista 6.3.13

Padres vs Dodgers at Petco Park 6.20.13

3. Go places (...outside Point Loma)

Northern California, here we come

Palm Desert

4. Find interesting museums (aka culture)

Okay, so this is the Pompidou in Paris, but still.

5. Reading list! I have one started, and it's growing every day. Now, I just have to actually start reading the books...

6. Open my Etsy Shop

7. Redecorate/rearrange my spaces, add color, lighten, and brighten

8. Clean out my closet

9. Write letters

10. Try new recipes


Banana Bread in a Mug

Well, this was a pleasant surprise. I got tired of my usual pumpkin muffin-in-a-mug (I can't really call it "cake" anymore), so I played with my "recipe" a bit and accidentally came out with banana bread. Of course I never measure anything, but I know what it looks like when I make it...so there's that.

Yes, I have a Paris bowl. Surprised?

1/2 ripe banana
1 big spoonful (maybe a little less than 1/4 cup) pumpkin puree
1 tablespoon coconut oil - melted
1 tablespoon almond butter
1 egg
1 tiny splash vanilla extract
1-2 shakes of cinnamon
1 pinch of baking soda
1 tablespoon coconut flour

I usually start by melting the coconut oil in a 2-cup Pyrex glass measuring cup, then I add the banana, pumpkin, and almond butter. Mix, mix, mix. Be careful not to splash on yourself - I speak from experience. Or wear an apron if you like making a mess. Then add the egg and vanilla and keep mixing. Now the cinnamon, baking soda, and coconut flour. Mix some more! It should look like thick cake batter. Scrape the sides and let it sit for a minute or two to let the coconut flour absorb a bit, then microwave for 2:30-2:45. At this point, I like to dump it out upside-down on a plate and if the bottom looks too soft/wet still, I microwave it for 30 more seconds.

*Keep in mind, this is just an estimate. I usually just use a couple big spoons and eyeball everything. I sprinkle a little baking soda in my palm and break up the clumps, then just toss it in, so I really have no idea how much I use.


Save 'em for a rainy day

There is a crack in everything (via Rachel Held Evans)
If I patch up my cracks and you patch yours, we will never find each other. We remain in darkness. [Tedd Cadd]

In which you're a pioneer (Sarah Bessey)

How to be an introvert in an extroverted world (HelloGiggles)

On a related note: 31 unmistakable signs that you're an introvert. CHECK. (Buzzfeed)

How do Americans say specific words? (via The Paris Review Daily)

Pie Charts (via A Cup of Jo)

A love story for every state (Amazon via The Paris Review)


June 6, 1944

 Today is the 69th anniversary of the D-Day Invasion of Normandy. 

Until last summer, this day didn't mean much to me, other than one more date I learned in history classes in school. I always liked history (thank you, parents), but I had such a hard time accepting the reality of war that I had to brush it off before it hit me too hard - I don't do well with violence. We learned about all this fighting and ugliness that happened years ago on another continent, and it is so easy to stay disconnected - until you go there yourself.

At the Caen Memorial

It's impossible to ignore the history of WWII when living in Normandy. It's everywhere - not just in France, but all over Europe. Especially in Normandy though, there is so much to absorb about D-Day.  I got a chance to visit the Pegasus Bridge Memorial, the American WWII cemetery, and the Caen Memorial - which actually goes through WWI to the present. But actually being there was more powerful than anything.

I walked across the original Pegasus Bridge, where the first minutes of the D-Day invasion took place.

I stood over Omaha Beach and looked up and down the coast at the other landing beaches.

I walked through the crosses and Stars of David in the American cemetery.

This tiny glimpse of the war was overwhelming and it's still shaking me a year later. I'm still processing it, it's still heavy, and I know I'll never fully grasp the reality of it all, but I'm connected to it more than I was before.

The British 6th Airborne Division fought at Pegasus Bridge

Even though I didn't want to look at the gruesome photos in the museums or read the staggering statistics from the war, I knew I had to. I didn't want to take the easy way out and ignore it or distract myself - I wanted to respect the sacrifice made all those years ago and offer my own salute to the soldiers and the countries involved. I didn't care how hard it was for me to look, it was infinitely more difficult for them, and I needed to acknowledge that.

As much as I enjoy history, I didn't visit these places entirely for myself - that was only the tiniest of reasons. I looked and listened and learned and cried for them: for those who had to face it, for those who survived, and most importantly for those who didn't. I payed attention because this history is part of our history and if we don't stop to acknowledge it and say "thank you," then we might forget.

"Nous n'oublions pas, nous n'oublierons jamais, la dette d'infinie gratitude que nous avons contractée envers ceux qui ont tout donne pour notre libération."
-René Coty, president of the Republic of France

We don't forget, we could never forget, the debt of infinite gratitude that we have toward those who gave everything for our liberation.