I Love You Sonos Much

I am not the most technically savvy person out there, by any means, but I’m no dummy either. You may disagree after I let you in on a little secret. I own no Apple or Android products. Seriously. I had like 2 iPods in the past, but that’s it. In my defense, I have worked at Microsoft for 8 years and it’s all I’ve ever really known. I have a PC. I have a Windows Phone. I have an Xbox. That said, I don’t get to experience many of the new apps that you normal people take for granted. Like Instagram, until recently. Or Tinder. Still no Tinder for me. But maybe that’s a good thing. And on that note, I need to do a post on my online dating experiences, which has been horrifying and would mostly be me telling you about the most ridiculous emails I get from these guys out there, I just don’t get it. Like, for example, I had this 26 year old guy email me and ask if I liked younger guys because he’d always wanted to sleep with a MILF. Um, no.

Sonos Logo

But I digress. The topic at hand is Sonos. Sonos lets you wirelessly stream music from tons of places, including your library, tons of music services and radio stations. One of my must-haves in the new house was built in ceiling speakers in the kitchen and living room. I did a little research to figure out what I needed to buy in order to get my Sonos sitch up and running and ended up with the Sonos Connect Amp ($499.99) and Bridge ($49.99). I can control via my laptop and phone, although the phone app isn’t even the real deal, it’s called “Phonos”. Sonos doesn’t have an app for Windows Phone. Lame and par for the course. So far, I have been using Songza or Spotify since most of my collection doesn’t come through due to my Xbox Music Pass. I won’t bore you with the details, but it’s a subscription service, I don’t own the songs, they’re protected, blah blah blah.

Bottom line, Sonos fucking rules. Yep, just dropped my first f bomb. That’s how much I love it. So pleasant to be cooking dinner and have the music playing. Working from home, sitting in my beautiful white kitchen with the music playing. I am chopping to Katy Perry and typing to Vampire Weekend. Sold.

 

Faves of 2013 – Here’s What Worked for Me

I’m back at work after what seemed like a very long, almost too long, break for Christmas and New Years. Oliver is also back in school this week, my routine is being revived, my weight will hopefully go back down, and I’m ready to conquer 2014. As we kick this year off, I have been doing some deep soul searching and reflecting on 2013, but I’ll save that for my therapist. For you, I present my list of what worked best in 2013!

Books – both on the heavier side, stories that completely immerse you and characters that are deep and layered. My kind of reading.

Songs – Clearly, I like pop music. I swear, I have more depth in my musical repertoire than my selections show. For example, when my collection is on shuffle, you might hear Pearl Jam followed by Miley Cyrus followed by Led Zeppelin. But these are my fave jams of the year. Sorry not sorry.

TV Shows (New) – I know, I know, I had a really hard time narrowing down to 1 here, and this is limited to new shows only! Ray Donovan is really the top of my list, and not just because Liev Schreiber is the hunkiest man I’ve seen in a long time. Jon Voight is amazing, as is the rest of the supporting cast, it’s gritty and violent and funny and dark. Love it. The rest of the list are also must-watches. There is so much good TV to be seen! Get out there and do something about it!

Binge TV ShowI couldn’t not mention this show. If you are a human being with a heart and a family, you should watch this show because you will love it. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t cry every single episode. Note, I do not recommend watching multiple episodes during Christmas when you don’t celebrate and your son is with his dad. Just sayin.

Parenthood

Denim – Jeans are my favorite article of clothing and I never seem to have too many pairs. I am lucky enough to dress casually for work, which only makes my habit worse. These were my fave pair of the year. Love the light rinse after all of my dark denim. Skinny, not too skinny. Can wear with Nikes or booties or heels.

Citizens of Humanity Racer
Citizens of Humanity Racer

Restaurant – I had 2 of my best meals here this year with friends. One sitting outside in the summertime on their lovely patio and one with a larger group of ladies inside. Both fantastic. The Roasted Chicken and the Filet are both musts as entrees, they are staples on the menu.

The Whale Wins

Recipe Kale & Brussels Sprout Salad – I discovered this Bon Appetit salad via my friend Jenny and it has been such a hit, it has been all over Pinterest lately too. I made it for the Pi Phi Christmas party and several of my friends ended up making for their Christmas dinners. This salad impresses and even makes for good leftovers! NOTE – I subbed toasted hazelnuts for the almonds and highly recommend.

DSC00649

Accessory – I’m not gonna lie, this bag has brought me some legitimate happiness and I have no regrets about the splurge.

balenciaga
Balenciaga Giant 12 Velo

Movie – I. loved. this. movie. I watched it twice in 48 hours, it’s that good. It might have something to do with Joseph Gordon-Levitt and that he is ridiculously hot/adorable and talented to boot. He wrote, directed, starred. Impressive. The story ends up being a really sweet love story and it got me.

Don Jon

Beauty – This has been the year of Laura Mercier. Skin, lips, eyes – all my new fave beauty products are Laura.

 

I am so excited to see what works in 2014 and hope you will be coming along for the ride!

Mix Tape Nostalgia – My Latest Road Trip Mix(es)

I have been making mixes for a long, long time. I made them all through middle school and high school. I meticulously recorded the songs I chose from cassette tapes, they might even have been tape singles, to another cassette tape – which seems just plain crazy now. The rewinding, the forwarding, to get it just right and make sure you didn’t catch the beginning or end of another song.  Other tape memories include:

Good times with this guy
Good times with this guy
  • the boom boxes had 2 tape players, for crazy people like me to make said mixes
  • when my Walkman got the auto-reverse function that flipped the tape over. Such an advancement (oh, I loved that big, yellow Sony Walkman)!
  • the stereo in my maroon, ’84 Volvo station wagon actually auto-stopped forwarding/rewinding the tape after each song break, really revolutionary stuff
  • I may have recorded a song or 2 from the radio – hey, that’s what you did when you didn’t have the tape!

In high school and college, things got easier with CD’s, this really opened things up for my mix tape making skills. There were several “Best Mix Ever”s, not to mention the famous “Europe Mix” which I made 3 copies for the 4 of us who traveled through Europe for a month post-college (you didn’t want to be the one who didn’t have a copy).

In my 20’s, I literally thought I had died and gone to heaven with the Napster/mp3 movement. I could have ANY SONG I WANTED WITHOUT HAVING TO BUY THE CD, JUST LIKE THAT!!! This was also around the same time pop music was making a huge resurgence, so I could get the singles I wanted with no investment in the entire album.

Now, here I am today, my music experience is in tip-top form, from the Bluetooth/phone experience in my car – Spotify or Xbox Music (yes, I am the one person who has a Windows Phone and uses Xbox Music), to the seamless way I can have the same experience on my laptop or TV.  The crazy thing is this is the only way Oliver has ever experienced music – on demand. If he wants to hear a song (or watch a TV show/movie) – BOOM, done. Kids these days….

Last weekend’s trip down to Portland required 2 mixes, Road Trip #1  – filled with upbeat, pop goodness that will pump you up and make you want to sing. Road Trip #2 – more mellow, still happy stuff, but won’t exacerbate fatigue or a hangover.

Now you get to enjoy my mixes (or I very much hope you do!) with just a click. How easy for you!

Road Trip Mix #1 – On the Way Down

Road Trip Mix #2 – On the Way Home

FYI – I get my music via subscription (Xbox Music & Spotify Premium) and pay a monthly to have access to all the music I want, wherever I want,  I just don’t own it, which is fine by me. And if I could get one gadget to enhance my experience right now, it would be one of these bad boys. Bring it from the kitchen to the bathroom when I’m getting ready, no plug in required!

Bose SoundLink Mini Bluetooth Speaker
Bose SoundLink Mini Bluetooth Speaker

Pop it up! 5 Songs I’m Diggin’

Since my San Francisco days when I was the only 23 year old (and visionary, I might add) to have an ‘NSYNC poster up on her wall with a major crush on Justin Timberlake (see, there’s the visionary part), I have loved me some pop music. True story – I even worked backstage at an ‘NSYNC show and got to walk right by JT, he and Britney broke up shortly after. Coincidence or delusion?

I wonder at what age does liking pop become inappropriate? Well, I’m 37, I’m a mom, and it’s still going strong, so can one of my good friends PLEASE tell me when it’s time to hang it up? Thanks. I love Britney, I love One Direction, I love Miley (‘s music. Is that ok yet or do we all still need to be up in arms over the VMAs?).

5 songs

Here are 5 fun songs to add to your workout mix or just listen to really loud in your car.

  1. Wrecking Ball – Miley Cyrus (sorry, she makes darn good pop music)
  2. White Walls – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis/Hollis/Schoolboy Q
  3. Work Bitch – Britney Spears (love, love, love)
  4. Harlem – New Politics
  5. Best Song Ever – One Direction

Happy Friday!!