Happy Valentine’s Day 2020, all!
I’m an enthusiastic individual, often too much for people. That being admitted, I love LOTS of things, people, and places. Still, here are 5 things I’m loving this year on Valentine’s Day:
1. My Califia Farms Dairy-free Almondmilk Vanilla Coffee Creamer. I am not getting paid to advertise this. I genuinely love it; over the holidays, I particularly enjoyed their mint cocoa version, too (photo at left). I used other full-dairy coffee creamers before 2017, and then my husband and I did a month-long Paleo diet; I decided afterwards I needed to find ways to substitute some dairy in my diet. Now, I’m not dairy-free, but I’m so used to this creamer–and I like it so much–that I can’t go back. My coffee is important to me, and this creamer makes me happy.
2. My The Highwomen CD. Yep, I still buy CDs. This one is chock-full of rollicking, swoony, belt-worthy tunes written so good and hard the soul pours out. I’ve loved Brandi Carlile for years, and she and her fellow singer-songwriters Natalie Hemby, Maren Morris, and Amanda Shires take the roof off with this album. Straight off.
Listen to them sing the title song, “The Highwomen,” here.
3. The Kate Shugak series by Dana Stabenow. This is probably the second or third time I’ve reread the series, but I’m doing so now because Stabenow’s newest “Kate book,” No Fixed Line, just came out. My aunt introduced me to Stabenow when I lived with her in Anchorage, Alaska, the summer after my freshman year of college. Lately, I’ve found myself mentioning the books to friends: truly the sign of a great story.
The series centers on Aleut detective Kate and her faithful half-wolf, Mutt, and tosses you into an Alaska so wild and wooly and gorgeous and dark, you never want to leave. Start from the beginning with A Cold Day for Murder, and you’ll have 22 smart, rollicking, sexy, super-cool novels to enjoy.
4. Going to bed early and reading late. I’m 100% better in the mornings than at night. My husband works in another state, and so I’m parentis numero uno (yep, I just made that up) Monday through Friday. After he gets home, and I tag out from putting the kids to bed, I’m done. Yes, it would be nicer if I stayed up with my husband. Sometimes I do. But many nights, I head straight from the kids’ room to ours, and I curl up for a book until my eyelids droop. I am the boss of me.
5. Embracing the laziness of winter weekends. It goes against my childhood training to laze around on Saturday mornings, and I often feel guilty when we do. But we are a typical, active American family with too many activities, and in winter our calendar thankfully slows. My husband took a job over a year and a half ago which requires him to commute 3 hours a day, and so our weekends have become sacrosanct. On Saturday mornings our kids watch too many cartoons, we make a big breakfast, and we hibernate a bit. This will all change when the weather warms, soccer season begins again, etc, etc. But for now, we’re taking it easy. Being full-stop lazy. And that’s okay.
Valentine’s Day is not my favorite: I cannot lie. Too much pink gives me hives. But it’s fun to think of and share the things in my life I’m loving, so thanks for reading! I’d love to hear 5 things you’re loving in the comments below.
P.S. To read about 5 places I loved in 2015, click here.