Category: web time wasters

Web Time Wasters

How was your week, friends? We had YET ANOTHER giant snow storm here in Minneapolis. We’ve had to dig trails around the yard so our little dog can go outside! As you read this, I’m back in Costa Rica, leading another retreat for Fit & Fly Girl. Lucky, right? You can follow along on Instagram if you need photos of beaches in your life!

Links for you 

After 20 years + 38 countries, 7 travel tools I won’t shut up about.

Such pretty necklaces!

Every time I share a photo of our dog Loretta in her bright pink, full-body snowsuit people want to know where we got it. Now you know!

A NYFW Street Style Gallery Dedicated to Plus-Size Women

Ooof. Yes. I’ve been here SO MANY TIMES. Get in the water.
“Get in the water,” says my hut. “You love being in the ocean more than anything. You will not regret it. You will feel so alive. Go! Dive in! Just get in for one minute! This is your one and only life! What are you waiting for?”

“But it’s a little cloudy today,” whines my brain. “Also, it might be cold. And besides, you’re not even wearing a bathing suit. You didn’t pack a towel. You just blow-dried your hair. It looks like it could rain. You have a lot of emails to answer. You have a meeting starting in an hour. And what about sharks?! Today isn’t an ideal day for swimming. Come back tomorrow. Not today.”

I love this 20/20/20 rule.

I found my first grey hair last year and I don’t intend to do anything about it (mostly because you can’t really see grey hair on blondes). But I loved this story about women who have gone completely grey and love it!

A great idea if you’re sentimental AND a minimalist.

Real, actual LOL.

If you’ve ever wanted to see me politely fight with people in Instagram comments….

How to feel unproductive and worthless in one easy step!

Why Are Young People Having So Little Sex?
I was told it might be a consequence of the hookup culture, of crushing economic pressures, of surging anxiety rates, of psychological frailty, of widespread antidepressant use, of streaming television, of environmental estrogens leaked by plastics, of dropping testosterone levels, of digital porn, of the vibrator’s golden age, of dating apps, of option paralysis, of helicopter parents, of careerism, of smartphones, of the news cycle, of information overload generally, of sleep deprivation, of obesity. Name a modern blight, and someone, somewhere, is ready to blame it for messing with the modern libido.

A good Netflix recommendation!

A tour of a pretty 350-square foot apartment. Love that sofa!

Did you sing along to Baby Beluga as a kid? Apparently, Raffi is the world’s nicest hardass.
Onstage, Raffi’s persona is avuncular and avowedly apolitical. But on social media — yes, even Raffi tweets — he has become something of a lightning rod, frequently trolling Trump with impish abandon. Recent entrants in the endless Raffi drag: “The word #emoluments sounds oddly exotic. crazy language, English.” and simply “#ResistFascism.” If this feels like a shocking twist for a man seemingly obsessed by the various motions of bus parts, it’s not. Raffi is a folk singer, in the mold of Pete Seeger and Woody Guthrie, whose guitar sported the famous sticker, “This machine kills fascists.” That’s not precisely what Raffi’s machine does, but it’s not far off.

I do not have a toddler, but this made me laugh.

Raise you hand if you’ve fallen into this trap: feeling obligated to turn a hobby into a hustle.


Web Time Wasters

How was your week, friends? I had tons of coffee dates with tons of friends and Kenny and I celebrated Valentine’s Day with a long lunch at Caffe Biaggio. I extremely recommend the Valentine’s Day lunch! Cheaper, calmer, and so much easier!

This time next week, I’ll be back in Costa Rica again – leading another retreat for Fit & Fly Girl. So I’m doing my monthly No Grocery Challenge to use up all ‘my’ food before I head out. I don’t want all that cauliflower to go bad while I’m gone! You can follow along and see what I make here.

Links for you

Want to protest Trump’s emergency declaration? Here’s a script for calling your elected officials.

A great resource if you’d like to share more diverse books with the kids in your life!


Fellow bloggers and Internet People: Everybody tells me I need one of these. Discuss.

This book is seemingly about Instagram but, honestly, it’s about so much more. Finding your voice as a creative, discovering art and beauty in daily life, community. So good!

Salted maple pie! I think I could make this during my next No Grocery Challenge!

Is less scheduling the secret to happiness?
We schedule activities back-to-back for fear of not accomplishing them all. Malkoc — who has an expertise in how people perceive and consume their time — links the over-scheduling of free time to the value that we place on achievement over contentment.

“The focus on productivity is so widespread that people even strive to make leisure productive and brag about being busy,” reads the paper.

So we do more and enjoy less.

“When scheduled, leisure tasks feel less free-flowing and more forced — which is what robs them of their utility.”

Related: How to figure out what makes you happy so you can add more of it to your life

How to get over a heartbreak

You don’t build a new brain–or a new life–just by giving it time. Time is not enough. You also need action.

Action. Movement. Forward momentum. Even the smallest step–taking a breath, opening the window to let in some fresh air, trying on a new shirt, checking out a new book from the library–begins to reshape the architecture of your mind.

Action is the medicine that brings you back to life.

I agree! This $2.75 was one of my best travel purchases!

A game to play with the kids in your life (without getting up off the couch)

How educational debt shapes our lives and choices
Debt forms us just as radically as a university curriculum does. As bills mount, debt becomes a guiding force in our lives, directing our decisions about where to live, where to work, how to save and spend, and what we imagine possible. The anxiety, regret, and shame over one’s inability to determine one’s own life shapes our souls as well.

Related: did you know I host a free, private Facebook group called Money & Happy where we talk about stuff like this? Join me an 4,400+ smart, kind humans having honest conversations about money!

Hope you had a lovely weekend!

Web Time Wasters

What’d you get up to last week, friends? We hosted friends for brunch yesterday, but – honestly – it’s been pretty much just de-icing and shoveling and rescheduling plans due to ice and snow all week. Ooof!

Links for you:

Are we improving ourselves to death?
Many are psychologists with impressive academic pedigrees and a commitment to scientific methodologies, or tech entrepreneurs with enviable records of success in life and business. What they’re selling is metrics. It’s no longer enough to imagine our way to a better state of body or mind. We must now chart our progress, count our steps, log our sleep rhythms, tweak our diets, record our negative thoughts—then analyze the data, recalibrate, and repeat.

Related: The Glorious Freedom of ‘Good Enough’ + How To Find It

Some good thoughts about price + value

Grimace emoji: The unsettling psychology of an Amazon Prime addiction

“I definitely feel like I’m spending more than I should on things I probably don’t need,” Melissa says. “I feel like I come up with excuses to buy things when I could just as easily do something more productive, like creative writing, working out. I used to indulge a lot more before I had to pay rent and before my credit cards had to be canceled (by me, voluntarily). But I’m still living beyond my means.”

Though she has a decent enough salary to make her rent, rent is a huge chunk of her income, and her Amazon habit means she still turns to her parents for money. Because they never come to collect, they inadvertently end up footing the bill. That leads to arguments, and she sometimes hides purchases from them.

New (to me) podcast obsession: You’re Wrong About …

4 reasons you should try small town travel + what to do when you get there!

A true lol for all former theater and/or choir kids

This is so cool! In January of 2017, I interviewed Alessandra Biaggi about her work as Hillary Clinton’s Deputy National Operations Director. Now she’s a state senator for New York!

Fascinating: US book covers vs. UK book covers.

Supernatural collective nouns (a racket of banshees!)

This apartment tour is all my favorite things: a small, rented space that gorgeous and has been been thoughtfully decorated with thrifted things (but looks like a million bucks)

A (new to me) free tool for anyone who works with clients or students!

I’ve mentioned before how getting serious about Pinterest dramatically increased my traffic (here’s the class I took). Pinterest just released their report on the top trends for 2019. I guess it’s a good year small town travel, Brazil, bakuchiol, and DIY goat milk soap?

Related: if you like these links, you’ll like my Pinterest boards, too!

Hope you had a great weekend, friends!

Web Time Wasters

What’d you get up to this week, friends? Unsurprisingly, I stayed inside for 99% of it – Minneapolis is NOT screwing around with these temperatures. I’m working through Bank Boost alongside my students and as part of my Earning Spree took on tonnnnns of work. Which is exciting! And means I’m working all the time!

Links for you!


Web TIme Wasters

I returned last night from two weeks in Costa Rica – week one was hosting a retreat for Fit & Fly Girl, week two was poking around San Jose and its surrounds with my friend Meredith.

Here’s my totally unsolicited San Jose itinerary + tips for you!

  • Use Uber rather than deal with taxis. You won’t get ripped off or have to haggle prices and you can ‘share’ your ride with people at home if anyone’s nervous about your safety. (At home I prefer Lyft, but it’s not really available in San Jose.)
  • Stay in the city rather than the suburbs! San Jose super walkable and easy to get around. We stayed right in the heart of downtown, but Barrio Amon is beautiful, walkable, and a bit quieter. If I could do it again, I’d stay here!
  • If you’re up for it, rent a car so you can take day trips out of the city. You’ll have to get insurance (your American car insurance won’t cover you here), but even with full coverage, it shouldn’t be more than $30 a day. We loved having the freedom to go where ever we wanted.
  • Attempt the Tres Cruses hike. It’s sort of terrifyingly steep, but even if you just do the first half, you’ll get some amazing views and exercise.
  • Visit the Toucan Rescue Ranch. Their Sloths & Coffee tour is $60 per person but ABSOLUTELY WORTH EVERY PENNY. You’ll see your fill of sloths and toucans, as well as an ocelot, an oncilla (the world’s smallest jungle cat!!), and an animal I can only call ‘a tree otter.’ Also, the ranch is a rehabilitation center not a zoo, so you can rest easy knowing that your money is supporting a great cause.
  • Head to volcano Irazu, 1.5 hours outside San Jose. Take a million photos of the lake inside the crater and all the clouds you’re above. Bring a picnic or stop at one of the restaurants on the way up. On your way back to San Jose, stop in Cartago and see the basilica and the Santiago Apóstol Parish Ruins – an unfinished church that’s now a public park.
  • Drive southwest and check out the beaches of Jaco. We liked Playa Mantas and Playa Blanca (which are technically connected to each other at low tide.) On your way to Jaco, stop at Crocodile Bridge to see 15 giant, wild crocodiles sunning themselves in the river below this overpass. After a day at the beach, check out the sunset from El Miro – the ruins of an old restaurant, now covered in graffiti – a great place to watch the sunset.
  • In San Jose proper, we loved all the street art, the amazing bakeries, the corner fruit vendors, and the wild parrots that (noisily) congregated in the parks. The National Theater is gooooorgeous and if it wasn’t their off-season, we’d totally have sprung for tickets to a show. We stumbled onto Cementerio de Obreros and loved exploring it.

Links for you!

If creativity is so freeing, why do I feel trapped?

This is SUCH a great idea if you need design input on your home without the traditional interior designer price tag!

The last curious man:
My wife came home one day, and she said, “Look. There’s a really nice woman at the newspaper. Her son is a writer. She wanted you to take a look at his work,” which seemed…adorable, right? A mother’s ambition for a son. I took this manuscript out of its yellow envelope, not expecting much. I started to read. It was about a young cook, working at a pretty average steak-and-frites place on lower Park Avenue. I called this guy up on the phone. He answered it in his kitchen. I said, “I’d like to publish this work of yours in The New Yorker. I hope that’s okay.” That was the beginning of Anthony Bourdain being published. I don’t know if there’s any way to put this other than to say he invented himself as a writer, as a public personality. It was all there.

Breakfast and beauty routines in Nigeria.

I really, really loved this essay from my girl Alex: There’s always a simpler way.

Your daily weep.

What’s it like to be an auctioneer from Christie’s?!

I read most of this on my flight home and had to subtly cry into my scarf.

I loved the black walls in this hour tour.

Pasta with yogurt and caramelized onions?

How to teach your kids to clean up after themselves!

A family in six acts.
My mother-in-law throws a party. There are grandparents, aunts and uncles, neighbors, and the next generation of cousins, a phalanx: eager voices and strange, improvised games. I drink a whiskey in the back garden. The adults discuss every Californian’s favorite topic: the route they took to drive there. It’s all novelty to me, the continuity of grown-up cousins and young cousins. The day grows cool. We cannot find my younger son. I usually know just where he is: attached to me. There is panic. He’s discovered, in his aunt’s bed, content and watching cartoons, wholly at home among his people.

Hope you had a lovely week! I’m excited to get back to my routine and write some great things for you!

Web Time Wasters

How was your week, friends? I’m still in Costa Rica, ziplining and beach coming and eating all the chocolate I can get my hands on. But I still found time to round up some great links for you!

Link for you!

Beauty + breakfast routines in Costa Rica

I’m getting more into food styling and food photography for my monthly No Grocery Challenges and I loved these tips about how to slice vegetables artfully.

Inconsiderate conversationalists are one of my biggest pet peeves, so I loved Captain Awkward’s advice.
Constantly steamrolling a friend, dumping all your negative thoughts on them after they’ve asked you not to, giving them the silent treatment and tanking a joint game session (a nonverbal social cue…that communicates displeasure) because your friend disagrees with you or sets a boundary, never making an effort to see how your friend is doing or learn anything about them isn’t because of a disability, it’s because of selfishness, maybe intentional, maybe a bad habit, definitely sucky. 

Materials I’d rather be than wife material. 

Ohh, I think this would be a great addition to my tiny makeup bag.

I’ve been thinking about diet culture a lot lately and the amount of time, energy, and money we spend trying to make our bodies look a certain way. What would happen if we reallocated some of that time, money, and energy? Obviously, I loved this episode of the Hashtag Authentic: How diet culture is stopping you from playing bigger

I love this totally over the top throw pillow!

Recession fashion
Minimalism was also a hallmark of the clothing that came out of the Recession. Everlane pushed elevated basics, like simple T-shirts and navy sweaters. Cuyana, a brand launched in 2013, piously encouraged shoppers to buy “fewer, better things” — not a new impulse in the aftermath of an economic shock. In a 1974 essay called “Recession Dressing,” a response to an economic downturn that had begun a year prior, the fashion writer Kennedy Fraser wrote, “The old interest in the cautious principle of spending more on fewer clothes of better quality is back.”

YUM. Cacio e pepe roasted chickpeas!

How to close the gap between inspiration and action.

Hope you had a lovely week!