Wednesday, March 18, 2009

A Few of my Favorite Things

I'm going to pretend I'm Oprah today and do a "Favorite Things" show. I mean post. Minus the free Viking refrigerators, digital cameras, designer purses, and slew of women hyperventilating and sporting mascara-streaked faces.

Here it goes...

The Coffee House station on Direct TV: This has changed my life. If you have Direct TV, see if you get this music station. It's actually an XM Satellite Radio station that also plays through your television. Where I live it's channel 848. 

I enjoy smooth, mellow, delicious music all the time. Cafe Verona anyone? It features "coffee covers" of already-cool songs {made even cooler "unplugged."} Best of all, I feel like I live in Starbucks.



Fresh Herbs: A departure from music, I know. Clearly, my favorite things are all over the map. I'm a nut for really good (quick) food with layers of flavor. Fresh herbs are a super easy and inexpensive way to make regular food taste gourmet. Just swing by the herbs section of your produce department.
{You don't honestly think I grow fresh herbs, do you? It sounds idyllic and I wish I did. But, I can only grow one thing at a time and right now that happens to be 3 children.}

Anyway, my favorites are cilantro and basil. I love to snip cilantro on top of Salsa Chicken, quesadillas, tacos, soup. It's also great on Thai food. 

When I was in grad school I waited tables at a swanky Italian restaurant that sprinkled fresh basil on almost all the dishes. It was love at first bite. Just last night I sauteed leftover angel hair with yummy stuff and topped it with fresh basil. Delish. And it took all of 5 minutes.

Fresh herbs are usually about a dollar a bunch and a cheap way to chic food.


Sunless Tanner: It's come a long way since the early days of stinky orange stain in a tube. Now that I'm a grown up and realize that wrinkles and sun damage are unattractive yet inevitable, I try to avoid "tanning." 

Not that my teenage self ever laid out in the sun on my black trampoline while slathered in Crisco. And not that I now have a bevy of ever-growing age spots on my thirty-something self as a result.

But let's be honest. Wintry white legs are no woman's best asset. And I believe stretch marks and cellulite are always improved with a tan. 

Meet my new friend, L'Oreal Sublime Glow.

This brand works well and gradually turns your pale self into a believable bronze beauty. Because it's gradual, you don't have to worry about legs that look like they bathed in Tang.

{Tip: T.J. Maxx often has high-end and nicer drug store brands for way cheap. I just got a $10 bottle of Aveeno gradual sunless tanner for $5.99. It also works great. A friend got a super-expensive bottle of Clarins for 5 or 10 bucks. Another tip: Exfoliating in the shower before application gives you a smoother sheen. Yes, I have a part-time job selling stuff on infomercials.}


Craigslist: Sort of like e-bay but free and local. Just list stuff you want to sell (or want hauled off) and you arrange the details with interested buyers in your area. A great way to sell unwanted furniture and stuff sitting in your garage. The Man sold two old sets of golf clubs for $80 each within 24 hours.

Likewise, a great place to find furniture or even free stuff (like plants or building materials.) Yep, they have a category called "FREE." I shop there most.

............................................... I just bought $100 worth of gift certificates to a swanky local restaurant for $8. No lie. Check it out. Great for date night with your man or to print out and give as gifts.

I could go on but I'll keep you guessing and save more for another episode. I mean post.

What are a few of your favorite things? I'd love to know.


  1. I love this post, and I never thought about checking TJ Maxx for those sorts of things! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Do you use the tanning stuff on your face too, or do you get a special face kind? I am PALE--like Twilight-Vampire-Pale. I feel like even when I buy the "light skin tone" stuff it makes my legs look orangish. But I've only tried the Jergen's....Fun post! :)

  3. I, too, use self tanner. I use the Jergens that you can get in a 3 pack at Costco for a great deal! (I haven't had the problem of looking orangish.) I also love Starbucks and jazz music.

  4. Thanks for sharing, great recommendations! I'm ALL about the self tanning thing, otherwise I think I would glow in the dark! :)

  5. we have XM radio in the car and it's ALWAYS on the Coffee House... I second that "favorite thing"... :)

    And I totally remember you sun bathing on the back trampoline in the back yard... haha... culy hair and all!

  6. I am going to check out this thing. We love to eat out and that is our biggest money downfall.

    We use an antenna, so no radio on the TV here!

  7. Oooohh, thanks for sharing. I'll have to check those out. :)

  8. Thanks for the reminder to check out Craiglist. Needing chests of drawers for the boys' room. . . hmmmm. . .

  9. Thanks for the comment...sometimes I just feel the need to chant "Serenity Now" a couple of times and channel my inner Frank to get through the day. ;) I'm going to give the Aveeno a try to see if it will help with my freakish paleness. ;)

  10. Have to say, one of my most favorite things is a long foot(half hour or more) massage from Mr. Sullivan. Those aching toe-sies feel so much better after that! Heaven....
    Better than "Calgon, take me away..."
    He is a schweetie to do this- no one else I know has a husband that does it. Am I lucky?


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