Wednesday, August 14, 2019

A Summer Day In The Life

Summer is quickly wrapping up - along with its free-flowing days with my boys at home. It's truly unfair how fast August flies, and how much I miss my guys when they're not all at home with me every day. Sigh.

So I thought it was time for a Day In The Life post before we hit the school year and our days completely change yet again! The day I followed was Friday, August 2nd.

A Summer Day In The Life DITL |

Summer and I are strange. I either sleep in until 9 or I'm up at 6, and for whatever reason I had an early streak going this week. We do have 2 early days each week (Monday and Tuesday) for golf lessons and babysitting my niece & nephew, but I wasn't up for any reason this day.

Boyfriend by Ariana Grande and Social House

Since it was so early, I played around on my phone for a bit and that of course included getting Ariana's new song that came out while I was sleeping.

kitten snuggles

While I was just messing around on my phone, Arya came to get me. She does this often...insists on attention very early in the morning, meowing loudly the whole time. She is the chattiest, most insistent cat I've ever known! I'm not complaining, she is the sweetest.

Happier Podcast by Gretchen Rubin and Elizabeth Craft

After waking up slowly and spending quality kitten time, I got up and opened the bedroom windows, made my side of the bed, then went to the bathroom for my morning routine (teeth, hair, face). Then I put on a podcast (I often do in the mornings) while I got a few things done.

Cuisinart coffee maker

I'm rarely up before Matt in the summer, but whoever gets up first has to make the coffee!

kittens waiting for breakfast

The natives were getting restless, so while the coffee brewed it was time to feed their tiny faces. They circle like sharks at meal time and their meows get louder and louder as you prep their food. Savages!!

mason jars as water glasses

With the babies fed, I let Galli out post-breakfast (she likes to go out before and after) and got my glass of water. I don't do it every morning, but I always at least try to have a glass of water before I even have my coffee.

The Bride Test by Helen Hoang

Coffee was done, so I sat down with a cup and my current book to read while the house was still quiet. Matt was up at this point, but all of the boys were still sleeping (bless!) Also, as I'm writing this, this book was 3 books ago already...this has been quite a bookish summer!

Passenger side of Dodge Grand Caravan

Matt was taking the van in this morning to get looked at for some problems it had been having lately. He asked me to help him clean it up quickly, so we went out and cleared out a bunch of stuff.

Chelsea Palmer on YouTube

Back in the house, I put on a bookish video while I made breakfast. I was still on my post-The Reading Rush book kick and watching everyone's wrap ups and hauls. This screen shot is of Chelsea Palmer.

easy weight watchers breakfast

I sat down to eat breakfast & refilled my coffee. My kids were starting to wake up around now so I'd made some extra eggs and they sat with me while we ate and we chatted about the day ahead.

Instacart Grocery Pickup through Tops

We needed some groceries pretty badly, so next I sat down to come up with a meal plan and then I placed a grocery order for us to pick up after archery.

Essie Bikini So Teeny

Groceries ordered and a little time to spare, I decided to repaint my nails. The kids were still sleepy and relaxing to cartoons and I knew this was probably the last quiet part of my day so it was a good time.

reading buddy

I read my book some more while I waited for my nails to dry, and my relentless buddy joined me. She's the sweetest ever.

Bad Guy by Billie Eilish

Shower time. I probably should have started getting ready sooner, but between waiting for my nails to dry and getting into my book, I was a little behind (as usual). I always put Pandora on for some music while I'm getting ready...this song is a favorite lately!

Showered, dressed, makeup on...I pulled some clothes from the boys' dressers for them to get dressed while I finished with my hair.

In the van and ready to go! (Which, I didn't mention, but Matt had brought the van back to us after it was looked at in the morning.) I didn't take any pictures of it, but they all ate a light lunch before we left, was party day at archery which is full of snacks, so they just ate sandwiches - Henry brought his to go.

Simply Cheetos white cheddar

We arrived at archery bearing cheetos. I forgot to take a picture because we did it SO fast, but we stopped at Rite Aid on the way to grab these.

Archery lessons for 8-12 year olds

Just hanging out at archery. The boys liked to dig while Luke did his thing (Henry actually had lessons the previous week, but this was the next level up that only Luke participated in). I usually brought a book to read, and I was trying to finish mine so I could drop it off and pick up some other holds that had come in at the library.

Curbside Grocery Pickup

I totally spaced on taking an actual photo so I just grabbed a screenshot as we were leaving, but we picked up our groceries right after archery.

library time in the summer

Next up was the library. I had to do my book swap, but we also just hung out and spent a little time there to get out of the house for a little while. The boys played giant connect 4 and Luke sat and read with me.

Back at home, I put all the groceries away and then gave the boys the all-clear for video games while I got some cleaning done. I still had a ton of sorting and organizing to do after swapping the boys rooms around the weekend before. We've had what I've been calling "the great displacement" where a lot of newness has created the need to find homes for things that have since lost their previous homes. Long story, but it involves a lot of weeding out the junk and creating new spaces for things. It's taking forever to get through!

loading the dishwasher the right way

I moved to the kitchen to take care of somethings in there and of course, needed something fun to get me through it.

I did dishes and got dinner moving. We had grilled tuna steaks, brown rice & green beans (which, I clearly forgot to photo).

attic treasures used book sale

Around 6, my littlest sister came to my house & then we drove together to a local fair called Summerfest with the singular goal of shopping for books - our shared passion. We spent nearly all of our time rifling through all of these boxes and making a few ridiculous maneuvers to get our hands on the good stuff. (Matt was at home playing with the boys so they weren't all bored to death by my extended book browsing!)

Buffalo Bills pin

I wasn't limited to books, though. I shop their whole sale (called Attic Treasures) to scour for cute holiday decorations and cool frames or kitchy pieces of art, and sometimes....something hilarious. I didn't get this, but I joked with my mom that I was going to get it for her. She loves obnoxious Bills paraphernalia. I DID however get her a beaded Bills necklace with a football helmet "charm" on it, and I went to give it to her down at the beer tent. She was there with my aunt watching the band.

She put it on right away and wore it the rest of the night - haha!

summerfest at st. christopher's 2019

Gabbie (my little sister) and I hung out with them for a while and lost our voices over the incredibly loud music. Seriously - that's not me being a crotchety old lady about live music, it was louder than a concert...impossible to hear each other talk!! We were also enlisted to go and buy food for them, and we ran into some family on our way.

My other sister showed up and insisted we re-take our group selfie!

And this is where my day sort of unravels in that I forgot to take more pictures! Gabbie and I drove back to my house and she came in to visit for a few and discuss locations for our upcoming book club meeting. I showed my stack of book finds to Matt, Gabbie went home, and then we got the boys ready for bed and tucked in.

Truly Madly Royally by Debbie Rigaud

This was the next time it dawned on me to take a photo, and I was already post-bedtime routine and reading myself to sleep (a new book - I'd finished the other one at the library earlier in the day).

I sufficiently tired myself out, and it was time to sleep!

We've had such a full, fun summer...I can't believe we only have a few weeks left (sob!)

You can see all of my previous DITL posts on my Just Jenn tab at the top of my blog, or if you want (for some easy clicking), here are my previous Summer-only DITL posts from the past:

August 2018, July 2018, June 2018, August 2017

I love seeing how they change over time! :)

PS - I'm looking for a co-host or two that would like to feature seasonal Day In The Life posts with me. Let me know if you'd be interested! Shoot me an email at Jenn(at)enrychment(dot)com

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Friday, August 9, 2019

My First Stitch Fix Review

Stitch Fix has been on my radar for eons - I just wasn't able to participate in it because I was completely wrapped up in the world of Matilda Jane. I actually encouraged Matt to start getting Stitch Fix about 18 months ago - partially so I could live vicariously through him, but also because he wanted someone to point him in the direction of more fashion conscious clothing.

A Stitch Fix Review from a first-time subscriber |

It's been fun watching him all these months and helping him decide what to keep, but I finally decided that the time for me to give it a shot had come! (Helped along by a $50 credit he was somehow able to give me?! Uh yeah, thanks!)

The day it arrived was basically Christmas morning. Jumping out of my skin over it excitement, you guys. (I love clothes to a potentially unhealthy degree.) I could tell right away that I would LOVE everything.

Studio Blue lightly distressed skinny jeans

First up was this pair of jeans. I'm currently working through an outfit/closet challenge, and one of the goals is to identify things to donate, sell, or just generally get rid of. I immediately noticed a stack of boot cut jeans that I will probably never wear again, but I wanted some new skinnies to replace them before I tossed them so this was PERFECT timing! They fit INCREDIBLY well, are a great dark wash, and have really cute subtle distressing details. I loved them instantly!!

Black off the shoulder top with criss cross strap detail

The next thing I tried on was this black tee with a cute off-the-shoulder style and a criss cross strap detail. While I liked it, and the fabric felt great, I have so many solid black tees in my closet already that this felt like a redundant purchase. It was also too large - which isn't a huge deal, they can exchange sizes easily. I didn't keep this, but I almost did - I really liked it! I just leaned towards saving money.

Beige and Tan kimono with gold thread detail

I was the most skeptical about this kimono, though I did like the colors. I only own one kimono (and don't wear it often) so I just felt like I probably wouldn't reach for this very often. However, I really liked the neutral coloring and the simple pattern, I ultimately didn't get it just to save money.

Navy and white striped tee shirt dress

I was SO excited about this dress! I love a good tee shirt dress, and this one looked SO cute the second I pulled it out of the box. It's a heavier, almost sweatshirt like material (though not too heavy), and has a really cute button detail down the back. I love the neutral navy and white stripes, and it fits so comfortably and flatteringly. This one was an instant must-keep!

The fifth item in the box was a bracelet that I never ended up photoing, but it wasn't exactly my style, anyway. It was solid silver (which I liked for its simplicity), but the actual shape of the links wasn't quite me. It was also pretty big. So that went back.

The jeans + the dress were both $64 each, but I had the $50 credit to put towards the purchase of those two things, and I'm so glad I did! I've LOVED wearing both of them, and they were perfect additions to my closet!

I'm not going to get a fix as often as Matt does (I currently have my subscription set for every 3 months), but I did schedule a special birthday fix for the end of this month so I'll have round two ready to share soon! Have you tried Stitch Fix yet, or are you way behind the times like I was? On the off-chance you haven't given it a shot yet....we can both get a $25 credit if you get your first fix! To claim your $25, use my referral link, HERE.

If you get a fix, let me know what you keep!

This post contains my referral link to Stitch Fix, which means if you sign up to receive a fix and purchase any of it, you'll get a $25 credit towards your purchase and I'll get $25 to use on a future fix as well. 

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Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Meet Arya & Kaiju!

Russian Blue Kitten

On Easter Sunday, my mom was over for brunch, and she showed me a picture of a kitten that a friend of hers was fostering. She does this often, and moreso since we lost one of our babies last fall. Usually I'd get a sharp "no" from Matt and a hesitancy from me because we were trying to focus on moving. But there was just something about this kitten....her coat resembled a mixture of the three cats Matt and I had shared since we started dating.

Odin, our 15 year old cat is solid white. His original litter-mate that we'd adopted with him in 2004 was solid grey. And our Edward that passed away in September was a tuxedo. This little girl had all of those elements combined...and I wanted her.

this is Addy, the kitten that introduced us to this litter

We had to wait weeks (over a month, actually) before we could go and meet them, but when we finally did, it was heaven! There were seven kittens in the litter, and if there's anywhere I want to be, it's in a pile of kittens.

The foster mom was there and had informed us that Addy, the original kitten from the photo had become kind of nasty and taken up the habit of biting and attacking feet. She warned us away from her because of the kids, and while I was sad....there were 6 other kittens that needed a home. Two of them that looked nearly identical to Addy.

Addy is the one up by my neck, the other lower down is our Arya!

We fell in love with all of them (naturally, how could you not?), and we had about a week to make up our minds. Matt and I both voted for Amelia (who seemed like a more chill version of Addy), while the boys voted for a solid grey kitten named Porkchop. My mom and one of the shelter employees kept encouraging us to get both, but Matt had his foot down preeeetty firmly citing the sheer amount of litter scooping and hairballs. And so we agonized over the decision for seven days. How do you choose? They're all cute, they're all sweet, they all need a home. It broke our hearts to say no to any of them.

The day came - it was a rainy one. I remember being too warm in my rain coat and already sweating because of the anxiety around picking just ONE kitten. We picked each of them up again and passed them around. I noticed Matt studying our two front runners specifically, and then he put them together in their little pen and they immediately snuggled up to each other. I was reaching in to pet them, feeling sad about the choice we had to make, when Matt abruptly declared, "We'll take 2."


My head snapped up at him in disbelief and the kids eyes all lit up. The foster mom had tears in her eyes and told us she was so happy she couldn't help but cry. We had a stack of paperwork to get through, but the mood in the whole shelter had shifted. TWO babies were getting a home, and a set of siblings would get to live out their days together.

It was slow going at first. Their mom had been nearly feral, so their natural dispositions were not the friendliest. They were scared without the rest of their family, and took a full week of having their own room before they were brave enough to venture around the rest of the house. They spent most of their days hiding and leary of us, and for a while I was worried that they wouldn't come to love us as much as we loved them!

It also took us a few days to nail down their names, but we finally decided on our favorites and kept their foster names as their middles.

Kaiju Porkchop - the Japenese word for "city destroying monster" is Kaiju, and the best known example is Godzilla. Henry has been in looove with Godzilla for years (well before this summer's movie), and Kai had been H's top pick from the get go. He's grey like Godzilla, and he is for sure a hunter. He spends his days in the windows stalking the birds, and his evenings attacking our toes under the blankets. The name fit him so well. We usually just call him Kai, or Kai-Kai. His foster name, Porkchop, was super cute and we almost kept it as his first name. It was given to him because he was always the biggest kitten in the litter - he's still significantly bigger than his sister!

Arya Amelia - we had a whole list of Game of Thrones names ready to go, and I didn't even watch the series! Matt did, though, and I liked how a lot of them sounded - different, yet current. Her name was easy to settle on. Arya was a small but mighty warrior, which we thought was a perfect name for a kitten. Her foster name was Amelia Earhart, and we kept Amelia both for the homage to her origin, and for Jake's passion for airplanes and pilots.

Arya is my sweet, sweet snuggle buddy. She has, for sure, chosen me as "her person", and whenever I stop moving for any length of time, she finds her way into my lap or some other location that pins me in place. We snuggle multiple times a day. She is chatty - she'll respond to you in meows and go back and forth with you in a full conversation. She is teeny-tiny, so silky, and the sweetest little friend.

Kai is a bird kitten of a different feather. The shelter believes that he is a Russian Blue (they didn't say as much about Arya being a Russian Blue mix, though they are siblings so she should be?), and their personalities and temperaments are much more reserved and independent. They like to sit back and observe, investigate, and do things their own way. Kai is absolutely that way (he also has the physical markers - the silvery grey double-layered fur, the triangular face, the mauve pads on his paws, the darker nose, and his eyes are turning green from the pupils outward). He is big, feels like a cotton ball, and has the loudest purr I've ever heard. He will also tolerate being held and carried (I think he enjoys the different vantage points), but he doesn't want to be pet or snuggled AT ALL. He only enjoys it when he was already asleep.

Together, they are the sweetest siblings (always snuggling and grooming each other), and the wildest playmates (throwing each other around and getting into loud, dramatic scuffles). They've only been home with us for two months now, but they are already a key fixture of the Rych Fam, and we're already not exactly sure what life was like before they came along.

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