Favorite Things: January 2013

Sunday, January 27, 2013

It's the last weekend of January! While I don't think, on the whole, that time has been flying by, January seemed to dissolve into thin air, didn't it?

Here are some of my favorite things from this past month, some of which are things I covet :)

Prints by confettielove

Art Prints
A lot of my time has been consumed by redecorating thoughts lately, and something I've always wanted to do but just haven't is hang framed prints around the house. I don't have a Pinterest account or even go near Pinterest because I am fully aware of what sort of time suck that would be for me, but I recently ventured (cautiously) onto Etsy and took a look at some of the prints. I found a lot of prints in the styles I like -- mostly simplistic and quirky. And oddly enough, in looking at the city prints available, I found that none attempting to depict Boston had any sort of distinctive Boston qualities about them. Kind of disappointing!

I have recently become obsessed with them. For no apparent reason. The windows of my house are pretty much glued shut throughout winter, so burning candles during the winter isn't even practical. But obsessed I am, anyway. I bought two small White Barn Chestnut and Clove candles at the end of last year, got sick of the scent about halfway through the first candle, then relit it one day and I am even more in love than I was before. It's creamy, slightly sweet, and definitely spicy. Now I wish I had stocked up, but there's Spring and Summer scents to think about. Ah!

I really hate gyms, mostly because I'm somewhat shy and don't particularly like the idea of exercising in front of strangers. Plus (plus), going to the gym often requires a drive or bus ride that makes it seem utterly unpractical to me. Which means that for the majority of my adult life, I have used exercise videos and DVDs at home. I own about 5 different ones, two of which I currently use regularly. I bought The Crunch's Perfect Yoga Workout back in 2003 or 2004 and have used it on-and-off until now -- and it's not "broken" like my "Gilmore Girls" DVDs, what gives!? Since the second week of January or so, I've been doing yoga two or three times a week (meaning only about 5 or 6 times so far) and I've noticed a tremendous difference in my mood, flexibility and muscle tension levels. I'm a believer now! Plus, there are so many great, free resources on YouTube for yoga, like Ekhart Yoga's channel.

Breakfast Smoothies
Partially inspired by my friend Zita, I've been making breakfast and snack smoothies a lot lately. I find that I'm usually not too hungry in the morning, so I just throw a bunch of fruits and milk or yogurt into my personal-sized blender (or bullet, as it's actually called) and drink it all down. I've been experimenting with different cupboard staples to create different flavors, and it's been fun and delicious. I'll probably be posting about that soon ...

Cheerful Folk Music
I feel that the turn of the year usually requires an infusion of cheer through music, particularly as we go into February and March. In 2010, I spent February and March listening to the upbeat yet cozy songs of Lady Antebellum's "Need You Now" on repeat ("American Honey" and "Perfect Day"). I've been listening a lot to the 70s Folk station on Pandora, and I created a station out of "Home" by Phillip Phillips, both of which have served me very while in these past dreary days.

This Steve Earle song made a couple of appearances between the two stations and, to me, is the perfect January-February-March song.

I hope January has been good to you and you're prepared for some of the roughest months of winter ahead (if you're in the Northern Hemisphere/you work in a place that has no windows)!

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