music monday: spring cleaning

Posted in Music by

music monday

It’s spring cleaning time! We’ve had a few above-60 degree days in Chicago, which always gives me the urge to open my windows, fill the house with flowers, and start dusting down everything. I like to make a fun playlist to jam along to as I move from room to room. This year, I also made a list of my often-forgotten cleaning tricks so I can print it off and check the boxes along the way so nothing gets overlooked. Maybe they’re things you forget as well so print off your list, hit play, and clean away!

  • Throw the kitchen sink strainer in the dishwasher
  • Dust your baseboards
  • Mop/Swiffer your bathroom floors
  • Run baking soda volcanos in your drains
  • Clean out your closet – get rid of things you don’t wear, clean up the corners or shelves that are housing things you’ve tossed around
  • Clean your glasses with spray or wipes
  • Wash your walls (and listen to My Favorite Murder while you do it)
  • Flip your mattress
  • Wash any rugs that can be washed
  • Switch your linens
  • Rotate your summer/winter stuff out of your closet and dressers
  • Dust ceiling fans

Any spring cleaning tasks you always forget? Let us know in the comments (because I’m probably forgetting it too!)

March 27, 2017

fashion friday: brunch dress style

Posted in Style by

fashion friday brunch dress style

It’s officially spring (finally!) which means it’s the season for patio brunches and porch drinking. After a long, long winter (moving from the south back to Chicago in the middle of winter is not my finest idea), I’m ready to let my legs free of their winter confinement. I just can’t say no to leggings. In anticipation of the above freezing temperatures, I’m sharing a few of my favorite brunch dress looks today!

casual brunch dress

Sandals, Target, $15.99 / Bracelet, Tobi, $16 / Mini bucket bag, Nordstrom Rack, $19.97 / Blue dress, Tobi, $58Tarteist Lip Paint in Bae, Sephora, $20 / Sunglasses, Warby Parker, $95

I like this look because it’s simple, comfortable, but with the right accessories and hair, you’ll look like a million bucks. This dress from Tobi features a short and flowy skirt, which makes it fun for spinning around in (but not so appropriate for blog photos, turns out.) Navy is such a versatile color and lends itself well to both brown or black accessories – I especially like how it matches the brown sandals I wore. The delicate gold bracelet is also a big winner – wear it casually with a dress like this or style it up for a more formal look. My friends would be quick to tell you that I’m a red lipstick aficionado, and this matte lip paint from Tarte is one of my favorites!

Read more…

March 24, 2017

how to keep your new year’s resolutions going with quarterly reviews

Posted in Living by

quarterly reviewa

How is it already almost April? It feels like yesterday that the year was turning over and we were making the move to Chicago. Around this time of year, I like to check in with myself regarding my yearly goals: am I on track to hit them? Do I need to reevaluate some plans, or has my focus and what I want to accomplish changed? I do this by conducting quarterly reviews every three months!

It can sound like extra work or a report you don’t want to deal with, but it’s important to set aside time to check in with yourself. You’ll be able to see what’s working well and what isn’t – plus, it’s a great opportunity to review great memories over the past three months.

This year I’ve been using a Passion Planner as my monthly agenda – it has built-in reflection tools at the end of the month, so I’ve actually been doing it even more than ever. If reviewing every month feels like too much, quarterly reviews allow for more time between reflections.

Quarterly reviews have two parts: reflection and preparation. This is the process I go through when conducting my quarterly review! Read more…

March 22, 2017

music monday: spring awakening

Posted in Music by

music monday

Daylight Savings Time at the end of winter just kills me. Not only losing an hour of sleep on the time change, but also the shifting daylight – yes, it’s nicer that the sun is out longer in the day, but just when I’ve gotten used to getting up with the sun, it’s taken away from me. On this music Monday, I’m sharing my favorite springtime songs to get us back in the rhythm!

Bruce CockburnWondering Where the Lions Are (This song plays during a November episode of ER, but it’s always felt so springy to me.)

Handsome GhostSteps

Aesop RockDaylight

Shawn McDonaldTake My Hand

Beach FossilsThis Year

Do you have a springtime playlist? Share it with us in the comments!
March 20, 2017

st. patrick’s day: irish style with Rhetoric Coffee!

Posted in Food by

Rhetoric Coffee Irish Whiskey

Over the holidays, I went to a Christmas party where they were serving the BEST coffee I’ve ever had. I asked my friend and she said it came from a coffee subscription – from a super cool company called Rhetoric Coffee.

Since getting that taste at Christmas and hearing their sponsorship on My Favorite Murder week after week, I was so excited to partner with Rhetoric Coffee to check out what their subscription is like. I checked the mail as I was heading out of the house one day and got too excited about it – sitting at a stoplight, I tore the box open. It included the best smelling coffee with really awesome artwork, along with information on the artist. They deliver a bag every two weeks so you’re never running out, and different bag size options satiate even the most ardent coffee household (like Dani and I!) Their website has a fun roast countdown too, so you can see when their next one is coming up! I also love that this month’s featured artist is a Chicago guy. The roasts come with themes as well – this batch’s theme was the band 311 (how perfect) and the even included a playlist. I think it might be a cool art option – maybe frame all the bags in your coffee corner! The notes on this roast had our mouths watering: black cherry, orange, hazelnut and milk chocolate. It’s every bit as rich and delicious as it sounds.

They’re also a company run primarily by women, and I love that. You can get your own sample by reaching out to them on Twitter!

One of the benefits of living with a coffee and cocktail enthusiast is that I’ll often get sent amazing recipes throughout the day. The latest was this extremely timely brown sugar Irish whiskey recipe that immediately got me thinking about St. Patrick’s Day coffee!

Our first Rhetoric Coffee delivery arrived a few days ago, so it seemed like the perfect brew for Irish coffees on St. Patrick’s Day. Inspired by the recipe Dani had sent my way, here’s our own version of Irish Coffee:

Read more…

March 17, 2017