My parents are watching the boys this weekend (my mom was kind enough to come in town last night and my dad will be flying in on Saturday morning) and all Chase talked about all week was Mae and Pop’s visit. They haven’t been up to our house in North Carolina since the summertime and we’re all thrilled to have them in town, especially since Sunday is Ryder’s dedication at our church as well! It will definitely be a full weekend but hopefully a great one.
In the meantime, let’s dive right into my weekly roundup of recent favs, shall we? Below you will find a few of the things I am loving this week and, as always, I’d love to hear about something that is making you smile lately in the comments section of this post.
Have a fantastic weekend, my friends!
Things I’m Loving
Coconut Milk/Whole Milk Tea Lattes
Every morning I have a cup of coffee with frothy coconut milk (from a can) but lately I’ve been loving tea lattes later in the morning as well! They’ve been a go-to for me around 10 a.m. and I love making one after preschool drop off once I get Ryder down for his nap. It feels like a little treat to sip on a frothy latte as I crank out some work and since I’m all about noticing and appreciating the little things that bring me joy in this weekly roundup, my tea lattes had to make the list this week!
To make them, I typically make myself a cup of hot tea using less water than I’d usually use for a more concentrated tea flavor (maybe 6 ounces or so of water?) and then let the tea steep for the specific tea’s recommended steeping time. I then add a swirl of honey to the tea (I normally HATE any kind of sweetness in my teas but when I make them into a latte, I do like a little sweetness). I finish off the latte by pouring 1/2 cup of whole milk or coconut milk from a can into my Mixpresso electric milk frother and then I pour the milk over the tea, stir it lightly and sip away. Sometimes I’ll add a little sprinkle of cinnamon, too! So delish!
Marco Polo App
Have you guys heard of this app? My friend Krystal texted our group of college friends about it and since we live all over the country from each other, we’ve been using the app to share random videos to a group feed to stay in touch. It is AWESOME (like of it like FaceTiming but not live) especially since it can be hard to connect over the phone as often as we’d all like to be able to do these days. Seeing short videos of my friends regularly helps us all feel more connected than a simple text and I actually just convinced my best friends from high school who also live all over the place to download the app as well. If you’re struggling to find time to chat with your friends and family as often as you like, I highly recommend this free app! It’s also nice that it’s completely removed from social media so you can just watch messages created specifically for you and your groups.
THE SECRET LIFE OF VIOLET GRANT BY BEATRIZ WILLIAMS
I highlighted this book briefly in Tuesday’s blog post about 10 Books I Recently Read and Loved but wanted to briefly call it out in today’s post since I try to highlight books I’m reading and loving as I finish them in my Friday posts as well!
Having previously read and loved A Hundred Summers by Beatriz Williams, I turned to Amazon to check out some of her other novels and The Secret Life of Violet Grant immediately caught my eye. I finished reading this book earlier this week absolutely loved the main character, Vivian, because she really is acharacter. She’s funny, kind of ridiculous, intelligent, unconventional and her voice is amusing and fun.
The book follows Vivian Schuyler, a recent college graduate and member of a wealthy New York City family, as she works at a magazine and goes against the Schuyler family grain. Vivian’s life takes a turn when a package containing her aunt’s suitcase from 50 years ago — an aunt thought to have murdered her husband before she mysteriously disappeared — shows up on her doorstep.
The book goes back and forth from following Vivian’s life in 1964 and the life of her disappearing aunt Violet Schuyler Grand, a scientist who moved to Europe, entered into a disastrous marriage with a notable scientist and went missing. Vivian is determined to figure out what happened to Violet and her curiosity takes her on a road that unveils secrets, mysteries and relationships that have a direct impact on Vivian’s life today.
Mug cakes! Have you guys made any you love? I’ve been attempting a few recipes I found on Pinterest and various food blogs but none have knocked my socks off yet. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still thoroughly enjoying mug cakes (Chase and I make them together to share as a special treat) but I’d love to hear your recommendations if you happen to have a go-to mug cake recipe you make over and over again. My only real requirement is that the mug cake recipe contains some kind of chocolate whether it be chocolate chips or a chocolate base. Part of me wonders if the reason all the mug cakes I’ve been trying lately are falling short because of a lack of icing. I’ve always been on Team Icing vs. Team Cake so maybe I just miss the thick smear of buttercream!?
70 Degree Weather in February
The weather in Charlotte this week was unbelievable. Temperatures in the 70s and sunny!? Heck yes! We spent a lot of time at the park this week and playing around outside. Clouds and chilly temps are set to roll in this weekend but we absolutely made the most of what felt like a little glimpse of spring in the middle of February.
5 Day Healthy Meal Plan + Food Prep (A breakdown of how I planned and prepped 5 weeknight meals)
High Protein Hemp Oatmeal (A dairy-free protein-packed breakfast with 14 grams of protein and 14 grams of fiber per serving!)
Question of the Day
What is one thing making you smile this week?