Browsing Tag

Jennifer R. Cote

Sweet Nothings

Sick Days

Coffee in bed, or in my case the mug would be full of soup

Coffee in bed, or in my case the mug would have been full of soup this past month

Doesn’t it always seem to happen that just when you get in the swing of things, life sneakily disrupts your plans? In my case, this topsy-turvy life force took the form of a nasty stomach virus that bowled me over back in September. As a result of these germy-germs, I’ve spent the past month and a half either in bed or at work (albeit taking it very easy on myself whenever I’m out of the house), and I’m only now starting to get back on track with work projects and non-broth-based culinary creations…

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Movies and TV

Makers

Gloria Steinem and Dorothy Pitman Hughes founded Ms. Magazine in 1971 and are just a few of the women who've made America what it is today

Gloria Steinem and Dorothy Pitman Hughes founded Ms. Magazine in 1971 and are just a few of the women who’ve made America what it is today

Have you seen this fascinating documentary yet? It’s a three-part series titled “Makers: Women Who Make America” and, even though I first discovered it this past winter, I’ve found myself thinking about the amazing women it introduced me to a lot lately. When I first watched the documentary I was amazed (and admittedly a little embarrassed) by some of the things I never knew about the women’s movement in the United States, and the series left me feeling truly inspired to make the world better — to continue the work of the women who have given me the chances I have now, and to improve the chances for women and other minorities of future generations. PBS’s editing keeps the pace of the documentary energetic, entertaining, and often humorous, and Meryl Streep’s narration lends the piece the kind of comforting, smooth patter that allows you to forget you’re actually learning a ton while watching…

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Love

Two Days/Years/Lifetimes

My sweet and I playing with our pup on our two-year anniversary

Silly selfie of my sweet and me playing with our pup on a very low-key wedding anniversary {we both worked in the morning, then played Bananagrams in the backyard and went to an outdoor taqueria}

My husband and I celebrated our two-year wedding anniversary this month, and — man, oh man — there’s nothing like a milestone to make you abundantly aware of what a trickster time is. Lounging in our backyard playing with our dog and his crush of the moment (a squeaky, stuffed-cow toy), my husband and I marveled at how vividly we can still remember our wedding day. I can recall not only every minute of that day, but all the emotions, smells, sounds, and other sensations, too. The way I’m able walk back through that day in my mind and relive all of its mushy moments is beyond photo-realistic, making the phrase “it feels like only yesterday” seem like a major understatement. And yet, when I think about all that has happened since those moments of white satin and purple lisianthus — about the career changes, moves, house renovations, and different health crazes passionately adopted then quickly abandoned by a certain well-meaning-but-chocolate-addicted someone — our wedding seems like it happened way more than just two years ago.

So, exactly how is it possible that a day can exist 24 hours and a lifetime ago all at once?

Answer: I have no frickin clue…

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Sweet Nothings

Crickets

Painted wooden door outside a shop in Ghent, Belgium

Painted wooden door outside a shop in Ghent, Belgium

Crickets. Yup, that’s been pretty much the only sound coming out of this blog lately. Life has been very busy and noisy in the time that this site has been quiet, but I’ve felt a bit remiss about the fact that I haven’t indulged in these shouts, screams, and cackles of laughter right alongside you, dear readers. Perhaps I should have posted one of those vintage TV test patterns months ago and asked you to bear with me through the wee hours that were to be devoid of programming. Do you remember those still frames of static and incessant beeping? {Sometimes they were a cartoonish image of a vertical rainbow, and other times they were a black-and-white bull’s eye with the bust of a Native American man above it.} Oh, how those stagnant images taunted my insomniac childhood. But, that’s neither here nor there. The point is: I’ve missed you…

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Inspiring Tidbits

Two Feet

Bobbi Gibb became the first woman to complete the Boston Marathon in 1966

Bobbi Gibb became the first woman to complete the Boston Marathon in 1966

Forty seven years ago, Bobbi Gibb became the first woman to complete the Boston Marathon. By taking those figurative and literal strides in a time when females were not yet allowed to officially race, Gibb not only helped change the rules of this famous sporting event, but she changed public perception about what women were capable of accomplishing with both their bodies and minds. She did this simply with her own two feet and a whole lot of determination, and she continued running even when marathon officials and protesters tried to stop her.

Growing up in Boston, it was this kind of story that always struck me with awe whenever the marathon rolled around each year. After all, the race has come to symbolize the fact that –no matter our skin color, nationality, gender, or religion– as humans, we have the power to go great distances by merely using our own two feet. Furthermore, the marathon shows us that if we don’t have the use of our own two feet we can cover great distances by using our arms to propel a wheelchair, and if we don’t have use of our arms the human spirit can propel us along in the form of a loved one running behind us and pushing our chairs…

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Love

Vintage Valentine

Coca-Cola ad circa Valentine's Day 1969

Coca-Cola advertisement circa Valentine’s Day 1969

It is no secret that I am a sucker for all things vintage. Sometimes it’s because of the simplicity, yet others it’s all about the ornateness. I guess I’m smitten with this vintage Coke ad thanks to a combination of the two–that lacy doily fills me with nostalgia for making Valentines out of red construction paper and doilies with my grandparents so many years ago, and the caption (as commercially driven as it is) makes me smile in wonderment at all the simple ways there are to be romantic with our sweets. Wishing you a happy day filled with two straws, one glass, and lots of love! Leave a comment.

Image from Pinterest via Snippet & Ink.

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Inspiring Tidbits

Coffee Black, Paperwhite

Paperwhites in full bloom, which now fill our kitchen

Paperwhites in full bloom, which now fill our kitchen

Whenever I set goals or try to gain a fresh perspective on life, I find myself torn between comfortable routines and an itching desire to push myself outside this safe zone of “knowns.” I guess the key is simply finding a balance between the familiar and the foreign — establishing just enough creature comforts and stability in our lives to give us the strength we need to try new things and challenge ourselves. It is so hard to remember this, though, since I am someone who admittedly lives for extremes and absolutes, but it’s funny how much I notice the validity of this whole balance thang as my husband and I turn our house into a home. The more sweat-producing chores we tackle and the more I get into routines in my personal life, the better equipped I feel to face unpredictable work weeks or venture into horrifying traffic in unfamiliar parts of our new city. Perhaps our homes, routines and creature comforts are merely a foundation for the bold adventures we’re all destined for as humans, but one thing is certain: both the familiar and the foreign are very necessary parts of a fulfilled life…

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Inspiring Tidbits, Movies and TV

Kubrick and the Craft

Stanley Kubrick's camera on display at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Stanley Kubrick’s camera on display at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Last week my husband arrived home from a lengthy Taiwan trip just in time for my birthday. We celebrated by playing hooky, eating ice cream along with all three meals, and attending the Stanley Kubrick exhibit at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The exhibit was beautifully curated (complete with red-carpeted floors in the gallery room that was devoted to “The Shining”), and my favorite part was getting to glimpse some of Kubrick’s earliest works and influences. It was particularly inspiring to me to see snapshots from his early career as a photojournalist, and to learn about how admittedly embarrassed he was of his first films…

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