39 random things I love/feel/know heading into my 39th year of life, in no particular order.
1. High waist jeans are more flattering, and versatile, than you ever imagined. And, THIS is the best brand to buy.
2. It is okay that you impulse bought this extravagant pair of statement shoes because, they are AWESOME and, at this point in your life, they will get worn 4 times a year and as such, last forever.
3. If you get cranky with your kids because they are dragging out the bedtime routine, once they do fall asleep, you will feel pretty shitty about yourself.
4. 100 burpees a day is the most efficient workout that you can rarely find an excuse to skip…and once you start, inevitably you are like “ugh, I already need to wash my hair so may as well do some more…”
5. If you stop drinking by 10pm, no matter how much you drink before that, you will wake up feeling pretty much fine. (Easier said than done, but…)
6. The best kind of girl friends at this stage in life are the ones who are your constant cheerleaders but also your most brutally honest sounding boards.
7. THESE will make you feel sane and organized every time you look at them, even if you are a total mess. You can’t have too many.
8. Flying with 2 young kids is a pain in the ass, but always worth it. The more you do it, the better travelers they become.
9. If you put a reading nook in your living room, make sure the cushion is removable so said nook can transform into a banquette late night dance parties.
10. You only live once- so opt for the boldest wallpaper option offered, always.
11. 3 things to always have in your freezer: Trader Joe’s Cauliflower Rice, Chloe’s Soft Serve Fruit Popsicles, and a giant box of frozen mini tacos from Costco (quick dinner for the kids, easy end-of-the-night tipsy snack for adults.)
12. During off-peak hours, the Metro North train is perhaps the best temporary office space ever. (First runner up- the local library- it makes you feel like a kid again, even if you are sitting there figuring out mortgage payments and filing taxes.)
13. If you don’t like your hands- but you like Instagram- stock up on oversized rings that cover up your fingers. THIS Etsy shop has a plethora of options- obsessed.
14. Lay out your kids’ breakfast place settings night before. Granted it only takes a few seconds but somehow when the morning rush rolls around, it makes you feel totally on top of things.
15. On the topic of breakfast, never be without THESE cereal bowls- 2 of each color is essential.
17. Lots of products don’t do what they say they do- but collagen peptides deliver. Stock up on THESE. Stick with a scoop or two a day and your hair will look like it did in high school (but better, because, well, keratin.)
18. Tune out the social media noise, but not the inspiration. In real life- and life in the blogosphere- it is important to be able to differentiate between what annoys you and what energizes you.
19. Push your kids to be competent in skiing and tennis- even if they fight you. Because how grateful are you that your parents made you stick it out when now, 30 years later, you can keep up with your friends on the slops and the courts.
20. Dear Evan Hansen is the best Broadway show ever. Ever ever ever. See it one hundred times if you can.
21. Even if in your head you know your family is complete, you will inevitably question whether or not you want to have just one more kid while you still (presumably) can.
22. At a certain point, even though you give them a hard time about it, you kinda love it when you kids crawl into bed with you at 3am.
23. 3 things to always have in the bar: A giant handle of Tito’s Vodka, small bottles of club soda and 4 limes. (You can keep the limes in the fridge, but just make sure that you have them somewhere in the house.)
24. Being on the older end of the age spectrum in your industry can actually result in a quiet confidence and sense of calm, which is something you never expected.
25. Instagram Stories is the best thing to happen to social media- and THIS “graphic design for dummies” tool is the most priceless way to tell your stories with style.
26. THIS Iro leather jacket is worth every single penny.
27. THIS t-shirt bra is worthy of owning in every color- because open back shirts are amazing, but you going around town sans bra is not. (When you make it to #39, you will see a photo in which said bra is featured.)
28. Laser hair removal is wayyyy less painful than it used to be, and even when it does hurt, the sting only lasts seconds but the ability to shave less often (or at all!) will last a lifetime.
29. If your kids refuse to take a bath, but you refuse to let them go to bed smelling like feet and cheese, just say the word “BUBBLES!” or “BATH BOMBS!” and consider victory yours.
30. Paint your front door an unexpected color- and use a Fine Paints of Europe high gloss formula so it glistens even on the cloudiest of days.
31. A robust stash of 1 Liter Poland Spring water bottles is the best investment in staying hydrated- THIS delivery service is indispensable.
32. Write something every day. You will always regret the days that you don’t record some sort of memory- and the 3 minutes it actually takes to scribble down a few sentences is really no big deal.
33. Organize your damn photos. Until you do, it will keep you up at night. But where to begin???
34. You can never have too many Veronica Beard pieces in your wardrobe- stylish and timeless and just perfect. The most easy go-to's for getting dressed.
35. In marriage, timing is everything. Knowing when to bite your tongue and when to table a to-do-list related conversation until later is invaluable, and something you are still working to learn.
36. Let things go. With your friends, with your family, with your work- because your kids notice these things, and it helps them to do the same- any little thing you can do to help thicken their skin is a good thing.
37. You CAN go home again. You may have never thought you would live in the town you grew up in, but times change, people change, and you can’t imagine being happier anywhere else.
38. Read books. Don’t ever cancel your Book of the Month Club subscription!
Photos by Caroline O'Kane Photography.