Things to Do - Random Links & 5 Hours 'Til Bedtime

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Happy Friday everyone! I can't believe it was 65 degrees yesterday and snow is on the radar for Saturday. Crazy world. I know I've been short on posts lately, but I promise more is coming soon.

In the meantime, don't forget to check out 5 Hours 'Til Bedtime - lots of great images this week!


* The Top 10 Most Spectacular Art Installations of 2016. So so cool.

* Women Who Draw is one of my new favorite websites - a directory of hundreds of female artists.

* Loving these photo mashups.

* A year in dinners.

* Yolanda Baker, last of the disco ball makers.

* 52 places to go in 2017.

* An island made of plastic bottles.

* These photo-like paintings are incredible.

* Has anyone ever tried jade eggs before? I'm surprised/curious/unsure how to categorize my response.


Things to Read - Jerusalem

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Lately I've read/attempted to read a string of bad books. I'm not sure what the problem is - whether age is making me more finicky or whether publishing standards just aren't what they used to be. But all in all, I've been less than thrilled.

So when I stumbled across Guy Delisle's Jerusalem: Chronicles from the Holy City in the library one day, my only goal was to remove myself from the boring fiction comfort zone I'd fallen into and hopefully break my book rut. Instead, I sort of fell in love with this book.

I've always been somewhat fascinated by Jerusalem (isn't everyone?), but also incredibly confused by it (so. many. people. not. getting. along.). And as someone who doesn't practice organized religion, it felt like a place where I didn't belong (spoiler alert - it still feels this way).

Luckily for me, Delisle is also a non-believer. Rather than arrive for religious or political reasons, he lived in Jerusalem because his girlfriend, an employee of Doctor's Without Borders, worked there (hence the book is also a great memoir of Delisle's life as a stay-at-home parent of two children/writer).

Delisle's beautifully illustrated memoir showcases the city's beauty, frustrations, and conflicts (SO MANY CONFLICTS!). Especially all of his drawings of the wall. And it's a pleasure to read. The kind of book that makes you cancel your afternoon plans in order to spend a few more hours on the couch.

Delisle has also written other memoirs about his time in North Korea and Burma, which I can't wait to read as well.


Things to Do - Grateful List (December 2016)

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This photo is like an optical illusion, can you find the 7th kid? (I didn't use photoshop).

Happy Friday everyone!!

* Watching La La Land in the theater as a family (F loved it; whereas T yelled during the credits "that was the most boringest movie ever!"
* Watching Rogue 1 in the theater as a family (F and I fell asleep; whereas T loved it! P, as always, was neutral)
* T reading Captain Underpants on the couch all afternoon
* Watching Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Season 1 (I love this show!!)
* Watching Better Things, Season 1
* Attending Second City at the Arlington Drafthouse with friends and neighbors
* Watching an all day Project Runway marathon with P and F
* Reading Jerusalem (so good!!)

* Dan grew a lemon (on the lemon tree!)
* TJ's ugly sweater cookie kit
* Georgetown Glow and dinner at Farmer, Fishers, and Bakers

* Taking 7 cool kids to the Hirschhorn's Ragnar Kjartansson exhibit
* A day to myself at Spaworld
* Visiting the African-American History Museum (an excellent addition to the National Mall)
* Date night with Dan - Jaleo and a Capitals game

* The fujifilm instax mini camera (love all the snapshots!)
* The Oregon Trail and Love Letter for family game night

* Isla (age 4) - "How do you write T's name, I'm trying to make a love card for him?"; "Now can you write, 'Isla loves T'"?
* F volunteering to clean our bathrooms
* Straight As for both girls
* The girls' excitement over their basketball teams
* F and P's winter concert (F on cello and flute; P on flute)
* A great night of neighborhood Christmas parties
* Neighborhood solstice mom/kid happy hour (which was fun despite the kids breaking our TV)
* Playing Agricola at Christmas


Things to Eat - Seven Week Meal Plan (mid-November through the end of December)

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Something is very wrong with this photo. Oh well, the holidays are always a little crazy.


MONDAY - Chipotle.

TUESDAY - Greek egg soup (via Epicurious), pierogies, and kale chips. I make this soup for lunch a lot, so I was hoping the whole family would like it, but no such luck. Oh well, it's still a personal fave.

WEDNESDAY - Dinner at a friend's house. Dan feeds himself and the kids.

THURSDAY - Dan makes steak and potatoes.

FRIDAY - Leftovers.

SATURDAY - Dan makes steamed dumplings and potatoes.

SUNDAY - Dan makes fish.


MONDAY - Italian sausage stew with potatoes and cabbage (via Three Many Cooks). This is one of our favorite fall/winter meals. So good.

TUESDAY - Polenta pizzas and cauliflower/corn tacos (both recipes from The Forest Feast). I'm in love with these tacos.

WEDNESDAY - Chili with fritos (via Cravings). The kids were so excited to have fritos I was nervous they'd forget to eat any of the chili.

THURSDAY - Thanksgiving at our house, Dan makes an amazing feast.

FRIDAY - Dinner out with friends at Tupelo Honey.

SATURDAY - Leftovers

SUNDAY - Dan makes steak and black bean fajitas (and they were crazy good).


MONDAY - Eggplant pasta sauce and spaghetti (via Food52 Genius Recipes: 100 Recipes That Will Change the Way You Cook) & "Use A Spoon" chopped salad (via Food52 Genius Recipes: 100 Recipes That Will Change the Way You Cook). The kids didn't love the eggplant, but they all (somewhat shockingly) loved the salad. I'll call that a win.

TUESDAY - Vegetarian tortilla soup (via Cravings). The kids (surprisingly) loved this. T even asked for multiple servings.

WEDNESDAY - Pancakes for dinner.

THURSDAY - Dan makes brisket in the slow cooker.

FRIDAY - Make your own pizza night.

SATURDAY - Dinner club with our neighbors.

SUNDAY - Homemade pizza at our neighbor's house (yum!!).


MONDAY - Sausages and peppers in the slow cooker (hot dogs for T).

TUESDAY - Vegetarian tacos two ways - black bean and cauliflower with corn (cauliflower tacos via The Forest Feast).

WEDNESDAY - Georgetown Glow and dinner at Farmers, Fishers, and Bakers.

THURSDAY - Frozen pizza before the girls' winter concert.

FRIDAY - Dinner at the Arlington Cinema Drafthouse during Second City's Holiday Review (the kids have mac and cheese at home).

SATURDAY - Sandwiches.

SUNDAY - Chicken with bacon and brussels sprouts (via Dinner A Love Story, the cookbook).


MONDAY - Pasta with kale and white beans (via The Forest Feast).

TUESDAY - Nachos (yes, super lazy).

WEDNESDAY - Dinner at Magionos before Dave and Busters.

THURSDAY - Green salad (via The Forest Feast) and leftovers from last night. BEST SALAD EVER!

FRIDAY - Burrito bowls (black beans, slow cooker carnitas, cheese, tomatoes and homemade chiplote salsa (the salas is via It's All Good).

SATURDAY - Dinner at various neighborhood Christmas parties.

SUNDAY - Dan makes cod and roasted potatoes.


MONDAY - Frozen pizza.

TUESDAY - Vegetarian tortilla soup (via Cravings).

WEDNESDAY - Dinner/apps at happy hour.

THURSDAY - Lost Dog carry out.

FRIDAY - Orecchiette with sweet sausage bolognese (via How to Celebrate Everything). We're all pretty much in love with this recipe.

SATURDAY - Dan makes Christmas Eve dinner for his family - cod cakes (via Jerusalem) and roasted potatoes.

SUNDAY - Christmas dinner with Dan's family.


MONDAY - Leftovers.

TUESDAY - Dan makes roasted potatoes and cod.

WEDNESDAY - Leftovers.

THURSDAY - Jaleo and hockey game for date night.

FRIDAY - Perogies and quinoa/tomato salad.

SATURDAY - NYE/the last day of Hanukkah at our neighbor's house - latkes and potato pancakes.

SUNDAY - Taylor Gourmet.


Things to Do - Random Links & 5 Hours 'Til Bedtime

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HAPPY WEEKEND EVERYONE! I can't believe we're already half-way through December. There's an awesome post this week on 5 Hours 'Til Bedtime - check it out!!


* 2016 board game gift guide. I want everything!!!!

* NPR's 2016 Book Concierge - I wait for this list all year long!!

* This world map reveals what each country does best. Yay USA and all our spam!

* 23 emotions people feel, but can't explain.

* The best music of 2016.

* 10 Life-Changing Decor Tips From Mariah Carey’s Infamous Episode of Cribs.

* What Should I Do With My Life? - the card game. I'm intrigued.

* The best TV performances of 2016. I've been obsessed with Gael GarcĂ­a Bernal since Et Tu Mama Tambien and he just keeps getting better and better.

* The Kid's Should See This's gift guide. AMAZING stuff for kids of all ages.

* My friend and fellow photographer, Jessie Casey (also a contributor to 5 Hours 'Til Bedtime), just blogged photos of her family's summer vacation camping in various National Parks and I am in awe of both the photos and the trip!


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