bits and bobs worth noting


the sunday assortment: 001

7.22.2018

bits and bobs worth noting



Curled up in a chair at the library, I’m forcing myself to write this blog post. It isn't going to be well-planned or well-thought-out, but what matters is that I'm writing it. I've been spending a lot of time lately thinking about doing things, but not actually doing anything at all. If there were an award for obsessing over every detail of your life to the point of insanity, I'd have a shiny plaque hanging on my bedroom wall (or maybe I'd keep it in my closet--that's not something I imagine I'd be too keen on bragging up). But here's the kicker--I don't do much of anything to work toward this ideal life I've carefully crafted in my mind. I mean, you'd think if I were going to go through the mental effort of perfecting every nook and cranny of the person I want to be, I could be bothered to maybe—hear me out—try to work toward becoming that person. But, alas, here we are.

Blame it on how we've grown accustomed to immediate gratification, social media's unrealistic depiction of life, or maybe just my lazy tendencies, but making a change seems...tough, especially because it's not only myself I'd like to improve--I'm also trying to figure out where I fit into this puzzle of a world around me, and what I can do to improve it...

I'll be the first to admit that there have been a fair number of things that came somewhat easily to me, and I'd be lying if I said that those weren't the things that I stuck with, because why wouldn't you keep doing something that doesn't require a terrible amount of effort to be moderately decent at? But it's hard not to notice the people who are absurdly skilled and talented--and look, I know I shouldn't, but I can't help but compare myself to them.

Be it art, writing, music, comedy, photography, honestly anything (even things I'm not even remotely interested in pursuing myself), I always find myself a bit envious of the people who can do cool stuff and do it well. Don’t get me wrong--I want to celebrate your craft and what you've accomplished. Kudos to you, dude—you rock. I love seeing your watercolor paintings show up on my Instagram feed, and I'll gladly like your band's page on Facebook. Nonetheless, the tiny, jealous person in my head (that I try my darnedest to subdue) persists, screaming with outrage because she feels like she will never measure up. Here's the problem (one that is exponentially magnified by social media): we see the result, but we don't see the progress. We see the whole pie, but we don't see a slice. I see you playing Chopin at Carnegie Hall, but I don't see the hours upon hours upon hours that you've spent practicing each day since you were 5 years old. I see the portrait photograph you took of your friend, but I don't see the photos you snapped when you bought your first camera. (Wait, that's a drawing you did with colored pencils?? Are you sure that isn't a photograph??? You're kidding me.) We wind up comparing our first or second attempts with somebody’s thousandth--no wonder we feel less than. The plain and simple truth is that being good at something takes time and effort, and most often, dare I say always, we utterly underestimate this process.

So, problem solved, right? Acknowledge how much time people have put into the things that they're good at and start putting time into something you care about so you can be good at something, too! Seems easy enough. But, queue sad trombone "wah wah wah" noise, I'm still at square one. Introducing a new problem: how do I choose what I want to devote that much time to??! Ah, the beauty and the horror of a blank canvas. There are so many things I want to do and work toward, but, in a tale of epic irony, I end up working toward...nothing, because I spend so much time internally debating about on what I should spend my time. Aaaaand, what do you know, we have come full circle: too much thinking; not enough doing.

In honor of this revelation I have made about my inclination to stare at a wall and dream about the person I want to be and the things I want to do, but then make no tangible efforts to accomplish these goals, I have decided to dedicate this blog post to the motto that everyone's favorite enigma, Shia LaBeouf, so graciously reminded us of (and also Nike's slogan, but if we talk about Nike, we have to also talk about their unethical business practices, and I don't have that in me right now): “just do it.” Just freakin' do it. Start somewhere. Something is better than nothing. A baby step is better than standing still. While you're at it, share the process, because that's neat and worth celebrating, too. And with that, I just did it. I wrote this post. That doesn't mean I am now a phenomenal writer, but perhaps I'm the teeniest, tiniest bit better than I was when I was staring at a blinking cursor on a blank page. Cheers to improvement, no matter how small.

(Pictured is the Apricot Almond Tart from Tatte Bakery. Yes, I'm still swooning.)
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Follow

just do it.

7.21.2018


Curled up in a chair at the library, I’m forcing myself to write this blog post. It isn't going to be well-planned or well-thought-out, but what matters is that I'm writing it. I've been spending a lot of time lately thinking about doing things, but not actually doing anything at all. If there were an award for obsessing over every detail of your life to the point of insanity, I'd have a shiny plaque hanging on my bedroom wall (or maybe I'd keep it in my closet--that's not something I imagine I'd be too keen on bragging up). But here's the kicker--I don't do much of anything to work toward this ideal life I've carefully crafted in my mind. I mean, you'd think if I were going to go through the mental effort of perfecting every nook and cranny of the person I want to be, I could be bothered to maybe—hear me out—try to work toward becoming that person. But, alas, here we are.

Blame it on how we've grown accustomed to immediate gratification, social media's unrealistic depiction of life, or maybe just my lazy tendencies, but making a change seems...tough, especially because it's not only myself I'd like to improve--I'm also trying to figure out where I fit into this puzzle of a world around me, and what I can do to improve it...

I'll be the first to admit that there have been a fair number of things that came somewhat easily to me, and I'd be lying if I said that those weren't the things that I stuck with, because why wouldn't you keep doing something that doesn't require a terrible amount of effort to be moderately decent at? But it's hard not to notice the people who are absurdly skilled and talented--and look, I know I shouldn't, but I can't help but compare myself to them.

Be it art, writing, music, comedy, photography, honestly anything (even things I'm not even remotely interested in pursuing myself), I always find myself a bit envious of the people who can do cool stuff and do it well. Don’t get me wrong--I want to celebrate your craft and what you've accomplished. Kudos to you, dude—you rock. I love seeing your watercolor paintings show up on my Instagram feed, and I'll gladly like your band's page on Facebook. Nonetheless, the tiny, jealous person in my head (that I try my darnedest to subdue) persists, screaming with outrage because she feels like she will never measure up. Here's the problem (one that is exponentially magnified by social media): we see the result, but we don't see the progress. We see the whole pie, but we don't see a slice. I see you playing Chopin at Carnegie Hall, but I don't see the hours upon hours upon hours that you've spent practicing each day since you were 5 years old. I see the portrait photograph you took of your friend, but I don't see the photos you snapped when you bought your first camera. (Wait, that's a drawing you did with colored pencils?? Are you sure that isn't a photograph??? You're kidding me.) We wind up comparing our first or second attempts with somebody’s thousandth--no wonder we feel less than. The plain and simple truth is that being good at something takes time and effort, and most often, dare I say always, we utterly underestimate this process.

So, problem solved, right? Acknowledge how much time people have put into the things that they're good at and start putting time into something you care about so you can be good at something, too! Seems easy enough. But, queue sad trombone "wah wah wah" noise, I'm still at square one. Introducing a new problem: how do I choose what I want to devote that much time to??! Ah, the beauty and the horror of a blank canvas. There are so many things I want to do and work toward, but, in a tale of epic irony, I end up working toward...nothing, because I spend so much time internally debating about on what I should spend my time. Aaaaand, what do you know, we have come full circle: too much thinking; not enough doing.

In honor of this revelation I have made about my inclination to stare at a wall and dream about the person I want to be and the things I want to do, but then make no tangible efforts to accomplish these goals, I have decided to dedicate this blog post to the motto that everyone's favorite enigma, Shia LaBeouf, so graciously reminded us of (and also Nike's slogan, but if we talk about Nike, we have to also talk about their unethical business practices, and I don't have that in me right now): “just do it.” Just freakin' do it. Start somewhere. Something is better than nothing. A baby step is better than standing still. While you're at it, share the process, because that's neat and worth celebrating, too. And with that, I just did it. I wrote this post. That doesn't mean I am now a phenomenal writer, but perhaps I'm the teeniest, tiniest bit better than I was when I was staring at a blinking cursor on a blank page. Cheers to improvement, no matter how small.

(Pictured is the Apricot Almond Tart from Tatte Bakery. Yes, I'm still swooning.)
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Follow

Every now and again I wander into Lush and am greeted promptly by the pungent scent of countless bath bombs, soaps, lotions, and potions sprinkled around the store. The story is usually the same: I'll putter around for a few minutes, dipping into an assortment of tester items, sniffing my arm, then sniffing it again and again, until I realize once more that everything smells, well, identical, because the only thing I can truly smell is the scent of the shop itself. I tend to leave empty-handed, and once I return to the outside world, I am pleased to be able to actually smell the various creams I chose to smother on my arms that day.

Lush and I have had an interesting relationship in the past--I truly want to love their products (and some of them, I do love; I'm a huge fan of Lush's Soak and Float Shampoo Bar and refuse to stop insisting that everyone ought to try it), but I haven't had the best of luck overall. I know some people swear by their skincare, but Lush and my temperamental face could never make friends. Even the products specifically targeted to those with sensitive skin seemed to cause flare-ups.

So yes, blah blah blah, I've learned that Lush skincare isn't for me, but this post isn't about Lush's skincare items. This post is about the day that I decided to meander over to the perfume shelf and rub my finger in various solid perfume pots and then onto my wrist, to discover that, surprise!, I couldn't smell anything I was applying. However, once I exited the shop that particular day and gave my wrist a sniff, I halted on the sidewalk and turned around to go back inside.

The perfume is called Amelie Mae, and it is the most glorious scent my nose has had the privilege to encounter. I can't describe scents, and I'll always be a bit envious of those who have that superpower, but it smells great. Sweet and warm and like a big ol' hug, and everything I never knew I was looking for. Not the most helpful description, right? I'll let Lush do the talking:

"Take an inspired stroll through a perfume garden in full bloom. Breathe deeply and drink in a sugary bouquet of ylang ylang, rose and raspberry that calls to mind nostalgic summer days. Let this sweet, innocent perfume blossom into a candied, berry-tinged floral on your skin and see the world with renewed awe."

That's a much better description--these kind of things should be left to the professionals. This scent is also available as a solid perfume, and these little pots are awesome to toss in a purse or school bag for use on-the-go. I will say, however, that the solid perfume doesn't have the greatest staying power. The perfume, on the other hand, wowza! A couple spritzes of this puppy in the morning and you'll good to go for the entire day, especially if you spray a bit on your clothes. My sweaters usually don't get washed after each wear, and they still smell like this fragrance days and days later. 

Moral of the story: check out Lush perfumes if you are in the market to pick up a new scent. (Lush's website also provides ingredient lists along with information about each ingredient--yes!)

What has been your experience with Lush products? Any favorites that you'd suggest?

With love and care,
Sara
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Follow

an ode to amelie mae

7.13.2018


Every now and again I wander into Lush and am greeted promptly by the pungent scent of countless bath bombs, soaps, lotions, and potions sprinkled around the store. The story is usually the same: I'll putter around for a few minutes, dipping into an assortment of tester items, sniffing my arm, then sniffing it again and again, until I realize once more that everything smells, well, identical, because the only thing I can truly smell is the scent of the shop itself. I tend to leave empty-handed, and once I return to the outside world, I am pleased to be able to actually smell the various creams I chose to smother on my arms that day.

Lush and I have had an interesting relationship in the past--I truly want to love their products (and some of them, I do love; I'm a huge fan of Lush's Soak and Float Shampoo Bar and refuse to stop insisting that everyone ought to try it), but I haven't had the best of luck overall. I know some people swear by their skincare, but Lush and my temperamental face could never make friends. Even the products specifically targeted to those with sensitive skin seemed to cause flare-ups.

So yes, blah blah blah, I've learned that Lush skincare isn't for me, but this post isn't about Lush's skincare items. This post is about the day that I decided to meander over to the perfume shelf and rub my finger in various solid perfume pots and then onto my wrist, to discover that, surprise!, I couldn't smell anything I was applying. However, once I exited the shop that particular day and gave my wrist a sniff, I halted on the sidewalk and turned around to go back inside.

The perfume is called Amelie Mae, and it is the most glorious scent my nose has had the privilege to encounter. I can't describe scents, and I'll always be a bit envious of those who have that superpower, but it smells great. Sweet and warm and like a big ol' hug, and everything I never knew I was looking for. Not the most helpful description, right? I'll let Lush do the talking:

"Take an inspired stroll through a perfume garden in full bloom. Breathe deeply and drink in a sugary bouquet of ylang ylang, rose and raspberry that calls to mind nostalgic summer days. Let this sweet, innocent perfume blossom into a candied, berry-tinged floral on your skin and see the world with renewed awe."

That's a much better description--these kind of things should be left to the professionals. This scent is also available as a solid perfume, and these little pots are awesome to toss in a purse or school bag for use on-the-go. I will say, however, that the solid perfume doesn't have the greatest staying power. The perfume, on the other hand, wowza! A couple spritzes of this puppy in the morning and you'll good to go for the entire day, especially if you spray a bit on your clothes. My sweaters usually don't get washed after each wear, and they still smell like this fragrance days and days later. 

Moral of the story: check out Lush perfumes if you are in the market to pick up a new scent. (Lush's website also provides ingredient lists along with information about each ingredient--yes!)

What has been your experience with Lush products? Any favorites that you'd suggest?

With love and care,
Sara
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Follow

What's new?

© sara spoke. Design by Fearne.