Week In Review (September 2 – 8, 2013)

Oh, September, you get me every year.  I don’t know why September always feels like it’s in such a big hurry to me.  I’ve felt this way for a long time, even going back to my school years.  It always feel like there’s so much to do, so little time in September.  Perhaps it’s the clash of the last lazy days of summer vacation running straight into the get-your-booty-in-gear buzz of fall.  That makes a lot of sense, come to think of it.  It’s still very much summer outside, but the busy bee is in.  I spent the last week cooped up in my office pretty much all day every day trying to get back on top of filming and editing for YouTube, taking and editing pictures, and writing blog posts.  Now it’s time to start planning out the rest of the year in terms of trips, organizational projects, and even my holiday prep series.  It’s crazy to think that the holidays are just a hop, skip, and a jump away (aka September, October, and November).   I have many aspirations for videos and blog posts surrounding the holiday season and I know I need to start doing some major work in the prep & plan department if I’d like to reach those goals.  It’s a little overwhelming, but ever so exciting at the same time.  In the next couple of weeks I’m working on wrapping up some of the loose ends of my remaining summer projects and gearing up for fall.

Can You Be A “Health Nut” and Still Eat Cookies Every Day?

OJ|MHWL 9:9:2013_1It hasn’t been all work, work, work this past week, of course.  I’ve been able to steal a moment or two here and there for personal pursuits and pleasures.  I’ve been working on perfecting my own version of the Health Nut Cookie I mentioned being obsessed with while in Utah in my last WIR post.  I was fortunate that two of my Twitter followers saw my plea for comparable recipes and I’ve been working with both recipes to find the right balance of ingredients (you can see House of Aqua’s recipe here and Kelli’s recipe here).  I’m getting closer and hoping that my third try will be the charm.  I’ll post a Cook Nook video on TBBB as soon as I’ve got it figured out!

I’ve also been catching up on some reading in the tub.  I really fell off the reading bandwagon this summer.  There was a lot of family togetherness time that took reading’s place, so I can’t complain!  One of my favorite ways to unwind after a busy day is in the bath with a cup of tea and a good book.  Sometimes when I am in between books I’ll catch up on one of my guilty pleasures, People magazine.  I stumbled across a small blurb in the most recent edition announcing Carrie Underwood’s undertaking Maria in one of my all time favorite movies, The Sound of Music, in an NBC TV special set to air December 5.  I’m not sure anyone can top Julie Andrews in this role, but Carrie Underwood, one of my all-time favorite female singers, might just come close!

Being home again after such a long stay in Utah means opportunities to be reunited with the family I missed while I was away.  Don and I spent a lovely Labor Day evening at my parents house for home grilled burgers.  I was also finally able to visit my grandma, Betty, in the hospital where she is recovering in rehab after breaking her hip a few weeks ago.  She’s a trouper!  Don and I went on a fun double date with his grandparents this past weekend to one of our favorite local Italian restaurants, Tuscany.   It’s great to be reunited with loved ones!

Sweet Beauties

OJ|MHWL 9:9:2013_ 2I’ve been fortunate to encounter some sweet beauties in the past week, as well.  I was welcome home with an awesome package from Sigma Beauty including the new Crème de Couture collection, which I recently shared in a First Impressions post.  Talk about makeup candy goodness!  I am looking forward to playing with these beauties!

Don surprised me with a unique bouquet early last week which is still thriving and gracing our family room with its beauty.  It seems very fitting for an end of the summer bunch of flowers.  Even the colors pull from summer to fall!  My husband is not only thoughtful but great at picking out nice bouquets.  He’s a keeper! 😉

Lastly, I fell madly head over heels in love with this gorgeous green beauty from Tory Burch that I spotted in the latest Saks Fifth Avenue catalogue.  I have no plans to buy a new bag right now, but it’s fun to lust after one!  Suddenly I feel the need for a green addition to my collection!  I’m holding off for now (especially considering the hefty price tag!) just in case a different design comes along and makes my heart flutter even more.  Speaking of purses, I have not forgotten about the promised handbag charity auction I’ve been talking about for a few months now.  I had hoped to have it up and running sooner, but it’s turned out to be a much bigger undertaking than I originally anticipated.  I decided I wanted to make an accompanying video to showcase each bag for a better look than the less than stellar photos I took.  I have every intention of hosting the auction at some point this fall, but I am not making any promises on exact dates.  Rest assured that I will provide ample advance notice before it launches and I will have it run for at least two weeks to give everyone who wants to participate a chance.  I’m still looking for a good online charity auction platform and would appreciate any suggestions.

I hope to be back to my full posting schedule both on this blog and on all of my YouTube channels by the end of the month.  Stay tuned for so much more to come as we approach the final quarter of 2013!  I hope you enjoy these last few weeks of summer 😀


20 thoughts on “Week In Review (September 2 – 8, 2013)”

  1. I am anxiously waiting for the health nut cookie recipe. I tried one and although tasty, I am waiting for the perfected recipe! 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

  2. Thanks for the shout out!!! I loved my version, but I want to play around with the recipe a little too! I find most of my recipes feature the same 4 ingredients with little changes. I have yet to meet a cookie I don’t like 😉 Love all your videos!!!!

  3. Hi Jen. Do you think you will include your Christmas organizational binder/notebook in your Holiday Prep series this year? I loved the one you shared for Thanksgiving and created one of my own! Looking forward to seeing your Christmas/Holiday one this year. 🙂

  4. Hi! I’m a new subscriber. I think I first found you via some travel videos on YouTube (packing and Disney!), or organizing videos because I’m into crafting and organizing too. When YouTube suggested one of your Halloween decoration videos, I realized I should just subscribe because we seem to have some things in common. Hope you have a fantastic September!

  5. The second recipe you link to says it is vegan but it is NOT VEGAN. It contains honey which is NOT vegan. The two comments I have made regarding this to the author of the second recipe have gone unpublished and unanswered. The rest of their site also has many many recipes that are labelled vegan which include animal products or by-products. This is upsetting and disingenuous.

    Please if anyone is trying to eat vegan, honey is NOT vegan. If you eat vegan for health (not moral) reasons then you can honestly eat whatever you want but you aren’t vegan, by definition. I, myself, am not, but I find it appalling the misinformation in so many blog-based recipe and cooking sites. They don’t do their research and just use popular tags and keywords to drive traffic to their site without actually understanding what that word/title means.

    I don’t object to the cookie in anyway, it looks pretty good. The recipe may be fine, but it is misinformation and wrong for it to be called vegan. I appreciate that you, Jen, do not “sell” the recipe as being vegan. It’s not just a trendy label to put onto things (I also find vegan nail polish to be absurd as the petroleum and solvent products in them are far from being animal cruelty free. The end product may be, yes, but how did that plastic resin make it into that bottle? I don’t buy into it, but I don’t not paint my nails. It’s a much larger issue than it appears.)

    Anyway, please, whomever reads this, I urge you to do a simple google search and educate yourself and make an informed decision about what you call or eat vegan. Just because someone says something is natural or vegan doesn’t make it healthy or right for you. (FWIW extremely toxic things are natural, organic AND vegan too, so those labels do not automatically mean SAFE do healthy. Ricin from organically grown apples is natural, organic, and vegan and is one of the most deadly poisons.)

    Apologies for the rant and long comment. I truly love the idea of this cookie and am going to ask my local baker, IndieCakes (in Berkeley, it is AMAZING) what she could do with it as I get my daily granola from her and she would knock this out of the park. I’d LOVE a breakfast cookie and love the idea of one as well. I just object to the blogger Kelli calling hers vegan and refusing to acknowledge my concerns.

    Good luck and I cannot wait to see your result! Thank you for sharing your quest to find a suitable replacement Health Nut cookie!

    1. Apologies, I meant ricin from organically grown *castor beans, it is cyanide that is derived from compounds in apple seeds. Please don’t disregard my comment for that mis-type. Though both are applicable to my point made in the comment.

  6. September is busy busy for me too because my husband and I bought a new house! We’re moving in April 2014 and there are so many things to organize in so little time… Very exciting but tiring too!
    Waiting for the cookies recipe. Have a great September Jen! 🙂

  7. Purses!! My main and very bad obession. Very curious about your auction, pls keep us posted. Keep up all work you do, it is great!

  8. september gets me, too. i’ve been so overwhelmed the past couple of weeks! your videos always inspire me to get things organized & running smoothly, though, which is a huge help. thank you for all you do & all you share!

  9. I feel the same about September, Jen! Especially with my daughter starting first grade at a new school…definitely felt a bit overwhelmed! This month I will be working on getting prepared for fall activities and the holidays. I have been watching your holiday prep series from last year to get me in the mood and mindset. I hope you will be doing a series of holiday prep videos this year. You, Don, and Winnie have a great week. 🙂

  10. I am so glad it is September! I enjoy summer but I am always excited when fall arrives (even though it’s not technically here yet)! I am also starting to plan our holiday events and I know they will be here before we know it!

  11. Jen, You asked me to remind you of doing a video showing us your wedding pictures. You had mentioned that in one of your older videos that you would show us some of your pictures of your special day and when I asked you, you said you would but to keep reminding you. lol I’m not trying to be annoying, just would love to see those pictures of you and Don. I am dying to see your gown. Have a great day!!!! Can’t wait to see all your up coming videos, blogs and vlogs!!! xxxooo

  12. September has been insane for us too! I started off the month by participating in the Rock and Roll Half marathon with my husband and my friend. The next day, we hosted an awesome Labor Day BBQ complete with our annual family kickball game. I was very sore from the race but thankfully, the worse pain didn’t come until the 2nd post race day. Then our twins had their first day of high school. These past two weeks of school are insanely busy as our daughter is on the Volleyball team and our son is on the Football team. Between games, practices, and other errands, I haven’t had much time for my projects. I am super excited though for cooler weather to run in and Fall fashion and colors are my favorite!
    I am too excited for the recipe for the health nut cookie. I have been kicking alot of food out of my kitchen and have been focusing on eating more clean and natural. Thanks ahead of time for working on that and for hopefully sharing it soon!
    Oh and your breakfast nook area in your kitchen has inspired me in the design of my dining room. I am working on a French Country/ Contemporary dining room and was super stuck on what to put on the walls when I thought about how cute your teapots looked on your walls so I decided to incorporate them into my design. I’ll share a picture once its done but at the pace I’m moving, it may be a while.
    Much love to you, Don, and Winnie!

  13. Hey Jen! I am glad to see you’re home and getting back into the swing of things. I had a small question about the purse auction (I know we’re way ahead here, sorry!). Are you going to disclose the charity that you choose when it is chosen or perhaps allow the person who wins to choose the charity? The reason why I am curious is because there are SO many charities and/or causes out there but not everyone would choose to support the same things. Many charities could go against the beliefs of someone wanting to bid and it would be hard to donate to something if you are unaware if it’s something you want to contribute to. Did that make sense? I think it’s great that you’re doing it though and I look forward to it when that time comes! Thank you!

    1. I will pick the charity and I will share which charity that is. If someone would rather not support that particular charity then they can choose not to bid on one of my bags. I haven’t settled on the charity as of yet.

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