I thought about doing a monthly favorites a while back but didn’t really have enough to merit a full post. Since I’ve been out of the monthly habit, I thought perhaps I would change the concept to Current Favorites. It won’t be every month, just as I compile a viable list of goodies to share. That way I don’t pressure myself into sharing things that aren’t, well… worth sharing?
With a new season, a new city, and a new chapter in life, I do have some goodies to share with you. This is the usual smattering of products, foods, and medias that I am currently enjoying.
- Herbivore facial products – I got to a point a while back where I was ready to revamp my skin care routine. Winter weather doesn’t always agree with my skin, nor does the dryer dessert climate of Idaho. I am also still trying to detox and re-balance my body and skin after 4 years of hormonal birth control. A friend recommended the Herbivore brand so I purchased their Balance & Clarify and Hydrate & Glow mini kits to try a variety of their products. I also grabbed their Soap Trio to try out. I was definitely impressed with the brand and have since purchased full size bottles of the Prism Exfoliating Glow potion and Lapis facial oil, and use them daily. I’m also currently using the Pink Clay Cleansing bar and am loving it. The brand is vegan and cruelty-free, and I am very happy with it so far. I will be repurchasing some favorites, and am excited to try some of their other products as well. Most of the packaging is glass and it feels very luxe – definitely pretty enough to leave out on the counter.
- Waterloo Sparkling water – This is an alternative to La Croix, but the flavors on these are superior in my opinion. I’ve tried watermelon, mango, and strawberry, and I love them all. I also did some light research and it does seem that sparkling water can be as hydrating as still water, so long as carbonated water is the sole ingredient. I definitely have been drinking more water because of this tasty option.
- House plants/Propagating – When we moved I brought with me only my Satin Pothos and my Marble Ann Pothos. I didn’t trust the movers with my plants for 2 weeks and we didn’t have room for much else in our car. I’ve had to trim them back a bit, which gave me the excuse to start propagating! I plan to become a full on crazy house plant lady. My friend got me a new coffee plant and a new aloe plant as house warming gifts, and my coworkers sent me a lovely succulent arrangement, so I’m well on my way to re-cultivating a nice little plant family. Pat rolls his eyes every time plants get mentioned, but it won’t stop me! Plant shopping is happening soon! I also bought a little test tube propagating station from Amazon (pictured below), but I don’t love it. The others are in small mason jar shot glasses, and one small mason jar. My friend got some cute glass vases and bottles on clearance at World Market and they are working really well, so I will probably go that route myself. We are headed to a flea market soon so I will keep an eye out there as well. You just need a vessel for water that allows the stem of the leaf to be submerged, nothing fancy.
- HBO’s Chernobyl – This historic event happened a few years before I was born, and while I recognize the name, I can honestly say I do’t recall ever learning about the event in school. I kept seeing previews for this HBO mini-series, and right after we moved I had nothing better to do but binge watch TV on the iPad. I think the show was very well made, well cast, and from what I can tell, was quite accurate historically. I highly recommend it.
- My mattress – This may seem silly, but I lived without it for 2 weeks and it renewed my deep love for my bed. We bought this mattress from Costco when we moved into our house last year. It was the thing I was most excited for when we moved and we have loved it. Pat was even impressed, and he didn’t think there was a problem with our old one. I knew I was going to miss it during our move to Seattle, and it was indeed a painful 2 weeks. I’ve definitely become an advocate for having a mattress you love, and I’m also an advocate for not breaking the bank to have a good one. Our King cost $800 from Costo, but my sister recently ordered a Full mattress from Amazon for her guest room, which I think cost $200 or so, and my mom loved it. Which is saying a lot, by the way. So point is, if you aren’t sleeping well and you think it could be your mattress, there’s no excuse to get a new one. Most memory foam mattresses these days come compressed in a box, so it’s easy to get them home. I don’t know about you, but good sleep is invaluable.
- Chickpea Pasta – You’ve heard of whole wheat pasta, brown rice pasta, veggie pasta, and all of the other pasta alternatives, right? But have you tried chickpea pasta? We tried it in this recipe a while back, keeping in mind a gluten-intolerant crowd, and were delighted at the texture and sturdiness of this pasta alternative. Some pasta alternatives get mushy and don’t hold up well once cooked. This one was sturdy but still tender, and the salad was a hit. I am looking forward to cooking more with it in the future, as it boasts a few higher nutrient counts than regular pasta (I see you, protein), while still being a delicious gluten-free alternative. I myself am not gluten-free in general, but I know gluten can be inflammatory, and since I eat enough gluten-based carbs otherwise, cutting back can’t be an awful idea.
- The Russell and Holmes book series by Laurie R. King – I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before, but this is probably one of my favorite book series of all time. Definitely top 3. I believe it was my high school English teacher who first handed me The Beekeeper’s Apprentice. It may have been her own personal copy even. But I devoured it, and was overjoyed when a few years later I discovered it was part of a series. I have done my best to keep up with the new releases, but I am currently a few behind. I’m actually hoping to get the rest of them ordered soon so I can continue, and am contemplating going back and re-reading the whole series. The basis of the series is that Sherlock Holmes is fifty-something and retired in the Sussex Downs, keeping bees, when he at last meets his intellectual equal… in a 15 year-old girl named Mary Russell. The series covers, in an odd order, their adventures from master and apprentice, to partners, spanning the globe. Each story is intriguing, exceptionally detailed, and the pace is never dull. Their relationship is unconventional, but satisfying, and the other characters are vast and varied. Even 13 books in, the plots are as unique as the settings. I’m usually a proponent for things ending after an appropriate time, but this series is an exception and I hope it never ends. I only moved my essential book collection with us to Seattle, and this entire series most definitely made the cut.
- Jasmine essential oil – I like the idea of Jasmine but have never been an actual fan. I got this sensitive blend as a gift with purchase I think. I tried it as a perfume on my neck, but really didn’t like the way it mixed with my chemistry – too floral. Then I read the directions and tried it on my wrist. Oh man, game changer! For some reason it smells so heavenly on my wrists and forearms – sweet and almost fruity. I’ve been reaching for it often to help soothe anxiety and improve my overall mood. It’s so lovely and relaxing. I’ve also busted out the oil diffusers since getting settled in the apartment and have made it a habit to get them going every morning before yoga and coffee. It’s making the place feel more like home.
That’s all I’ve got for now. I could list a ton of things specific to Seattle that I’m in love with but I want to keep these a bit more generic, since not everyone lives here. Let me know in the comments if you’ve got any favourites!
Currently drinking: Rachel’s Ginger Beer Vegan Dole Whip float – yes, you heard that right. Vegan Dole whip, float-style with gourmet ginger beer. Be jealous.
Currently watching: Parks and Recreation with the hubs. So good.
Hello! I’m Whitney and this is my home for all things food and life.