12 July

Podcasts to get you through any commute, workout, or long work day

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I am so happy that podcasts exist. I love that in a time of virtual reality and a new incredible app release every other day, this “old-school” medium has gained so much popularity. Beyond the convenience of being able to listen while you do other things, there’s something I love about listening in on conversations right through my headphones.

When I first started listening to podcasts after graduating college, there were really not many to choose from. I had a few favorites and would get excited when one of them updated with a new episode. Now I can’t even keep up! There are so many great options, and they cover every topic you could possible imagine.

Here are a few of my favorites lately.

Call Your Girlfriend | Listen Here
These two amazing ladies label their show as “a podcast for long distance besties,” and when you listen you feel as if you’ve met two hilarious, smart and loving BFFs. They discuss everything from how you can get involved and make a difference in politics, to the latest Kardashian drama. If you aren’t listening to this one you’re missing out. Promise!

Never Before with Janet Mock | Listen Here
This one is new and I’m already loving it. On Never Before, Janet Mock sits down and has real, intimate conversations with a variety of people who are making in impact in today’s culture. What I really appreciate is that I haven’t heard most of her guests on a podcast before. And also…her first interview is with Tina Knowles-Lawson – you know, Queen B’s mom!
Politically Re-Active | Listen Here
So if you’re anything about me, you’ve been having a pretty hard time in the past six months keeping up with the craziness that is our political climate. And if you can keep up, it makes you want to crawl in a hole and pretend it’s not real. I’ve found this podcast to be helpful. The comedians keep things light, and the experts they have on give me the info I need.
Alice Isn’t Dead | Listen Here
When I need a break from news and conversation, I love a fictional audio drama. My favorite lately is Alice Isn’t Dead, by the makers of Welcome to Nightvale. The story follows the main character on a search for her missing wife, driving a semi-truck across the US. She begins encountering strange and dangerous scenes and people, and it keeps getting weirder. Just listen!
Balanced Bites | Listen Here
Just to be clear: I definitely don’t follow the Paleo lifestyle. I’m a vegetarian, which is generally not popular with the “eat like a caveman” crowd. But I do believe in the concept of eating real food (does it seem strange to anyone else that eating real food is an idea that I even need to state I believe in?). I’ve been digging this podcast because the two relatable hosts cover so many aspects of health and nutrition.
My Favorite Murder | Listen Here
A few years ago, I thought I might be a little weird because of how fascinated I was with true crime. Cut to 2017, and there are dozens of podcasts discussing every murder you’ve ever heard of, and many you probably never have. This happens to be my favorite, and I bet it will be yours too if you’ve ever found yourself excitedly spilling the details of your favorite true crime story to a friend. These girls get it.
What podcasts do you listen to to learn, challenge yourself, or just get you through that long commute?
11 July

Lately

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Summer is in full swing, and in St. Louis that means lots of sunny, sticky days with temperatures reaching 100+ degrees. I LOVE it! I feel like the past few summers have been so mild around here and I honestly missed the heat. I know, I’m weird.

I’ve been enjoying the summer as much as possible, which means lots of walks outside, visits to the farmers market, patio dinners, and some pool time when I can swing it. All of those super fun activities, plus travel and work have meant not as much time dedicated to this space. But I’m still working on it and committed to it. I have a lot of ideas in the works.

A few posts to look forward to in the near future:

  1. My can’t-miss spots in Colombia – specifically Bogotá and the coffee region
  2. Finding healthy, vegetarian friendly food in Colombia (FYI, not nearly as difficult as I expected!)
  3. My summer reading list
  4. My favorite podcasts
  5. My approach to food + fitness

In the mean time…the past few weeks in pictures:

On our first day in Bogotá. I want to go back already!

 

Beautiful Views in Cocora Valley

 

Last week we got to see one of our favorite bands, Sidewalk Chalk. Check out their new album, it’s fantastic.

I was SO excited to see Roxane Gay speak and read from her new book, Hunger.

 

And here are some of the tunes I’ve been digging so far this summer.

Click here to open in Spotify.

Let’s talk soon! 

Love, 
Amanda

2 June

Oh, sugar.

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Oops! I missed a week.

I thought, well, there goes that thing I was gonna do. I messed it up and that’s that.

Isn’t that exactly what I said I wouldn’t do the first time I posted? Yeah…I might have a bit of an “all or nothing” problem. So I’m sitting here, eating some minestrone with avocado on top (I always forget how much I <3 avocado), watching Handmaids Tale (so good, a little too anxiety-inducing in current times though…) and I think, if I don’t post tonight it will then be two weeks. So let’s just DO it. So here I am. Definitely a work in progress but I’m not going to be a quitter!

Here’s what I’ve been up to in the past few weeks. I tried to take more photos but I definitely could be better. I spend way more time looking at other people’s photos than I do taking my own. Something to work on for sure!

We got to visit Cancun for a work trip (not the norm, but very cool). It was my first time in Mexico and we had a lot of fun just hangin’ on the beach. Next time I visit I would love to explore other places in Mexico, like Tulum.

I got to be there when my little sister said yes to the dress! She’s getting married in September and I’m so excited for her.

Proud Auntie right here. My niece performed in her second dance recital. There’s just something about watching a bunch of kiddos dance their hearts out – good for the soul, I think!

Enjoying this warm weather by sitting out on my deck and working on my Spanish skills, thanks to Rosetta Stone! Getting so excited for my trip to Bogota.

This past long weekend was three days full of ah-maaaz-ing food, starting with brunch at Wildflower. It was as yummy as it was pretty.

We also tried Olive + Oak for the first time…one of my new favorite STL restaurants. The 9:30pm reservation was totally worth the wait! We got SO much food and it was all delicious, but I especially loved the kale salad, baked tomatoes and eggs + rice. Try it out if you’re in town!

Every Sunday we go to Mokabe’s for their brunch buffet – we had missed the past two weeks and I was having major withdrawal so I was really happy to be back! So many vegetarian options.

Who can tell that breakfast is my favorite meal of the day?

We celebrated Memorial Day at my dad’s house with hot dogs (veggie for me), s’mores, some trampoline time and a bonfire. We had the dogs with us and they loved it.

And here’s the aforementioned minestrone with avocado…how come when I cook my own food it never looks as pretty? Still tastes bomb though so I’m okay with it.

On the topic of food…I have been avoiding sugar since things got a bit out of hand last week (thanks Donut Drive-In) and I realized I’m definitely addicted to that stuff. It has been HARD, y’all! I haven’t eaten anything with added sugar in almost a week now and it has gotten easier, but not that much easier. I’m still craving all kinds of chocolate sweets and have to avert my eyes when someone brings donuts or bagels into the office. I do feel like I have more consistent energy and feel much less bloated so that’s good. I’ll keep you updated!

Anyway, that’s life lately. I’m thinking about some of the things I want to share in the future. I want to post some of my favorite places in St. Louis – specifically vegetarian-friendly spots. I’m also definitely going to share my experience in Colombia in a few weeks. I also want to talk about some of the podcasts, books and shows I’ve been watching lately. We’ll see where it goes!

Talk soon!

19 May

Que Pasa?

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Hi again! I’m back, just like I promised (myself). Yay!

I’m still trying to figure out what exactly I want to say here, so until then I’ll just share a few things I’ve been diggin’ this past week.

  1. This warm weather, finally! This is the much-too-short part of the year where I love St. Louis weather. Not freezing, not unbearably humid. Just perfect for long runs in Forest Park and walking to the farmer’s market.
  2. Living in these. SO soft!
  3. Finally checking out Frida’s, a local vegetarian restaurant I’ve been meaning to visit FOREVER. Worth the wait! The taco salad was so good and the avocado mousse was a surprisingly satisfying dessert. Even if you’re a meat eater I bet you’ll dig this place too.
  4. Keeping myself sane AND informed in this political environment with podcasts like Pod Save America and Trumpcast (an actor reads Donald’s tweets at the beginning of every episode and it’s hilarious).
  5. Looking forward to receiving these two new cookbooks in the mail: No Meat Athlete Cookbook and Love Real Food.
  6. This picture of Bubbles:

    So fancy.

And a few things I want to do more of in the coming week:

  1. Take more photos! Get better at taking photos! This is something I’ve been wanting to do for awhile.
  2. Start a new book, specifically, this one that was just recommended to me.
  3. Do some tidying up, a la Marie Kondo. I’ll let you know if it’s life changing! I think I want to try sending some of my things to a place like ThredUp. I seriously need to let go of the high school clothes. Except for that one skirt I can still pull off…no? Okay, okay.
  4. Unclutter my digital space, too. Unsubscribe from about a billion e-mail lists that I don’t need or don’t have any idea how I even got added to. Not cool, bonebroth.com, not cool.
  5. Plan my trip to Colombia! It’s less than a month away and I couldn’t be more excited. But I need to brush up on my Spanish…because it is muy malo. Seriously. Rosetta Stone here I come!

Hope you have a great week! 

12 May

Aiming for connection, not perfection

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Okay, here I am! I’m doing this.

Really. Really? Really!

I’ve been itching to start something. I’ve been feeling a strong pull toward finding a new way to connect with new people and talk about the things that interest me. And what keeps floating into my brain is this space that I already have set up out here on the internet…this space that has sat empty for years.

Why is it empty? Is it because I have nothing to say? Definitely not.

There have been plenty of projects I would have loved to share, tons of songs I want to make sure the world hears because they might make others feel the way they made me feel, podcasts I want to discuss and recipes I want others to try. But in a world of perfectly edited and curated social media feeds, I never felt what I had to share was quite ready.

So instead I scrolled through that curated content, got list in the endless feeds, and told myself, “maybe tomorrow I’ll create something like that.”

I know I’m not the only one. That’s why today I decided to sit down and do this. I want to share and connect. And maybe I’m crazy, but I think being a little messy might even make that easier. I’m not going for perfect anymore, I hope you don’t mind! I am going for consistent, though. I’m going to challenge myself, as a start, to post once a week. I’m not sure what it will look like or what it will evolve into, but that’s where I’m starting.

What can you expect to find in this little space I’m carving out?

Connection & Community
Definitely plan on hearing some real talk about life as a woman on the upper end of being a twenty-something, living in a midwestern city, working full time while attempting to grow a freelance career. I’m talking struggles, goals, victories, failures and everything in between. From fitness to career, we’re talking about it.

I want to document my efforts to get more involved in my community (did I mention I’m an introvert? This is gonna get interesting) and share my travel stories (I get out once in a while!). Get ready…I might even talk about politics. Because being informed is particularly important these days, especially at a local level.

Creativity
I’m so excited to share the things that inspire me creatively: music, art, books, podcasts, events and sights in my city and anywhere I happen to end up. I’ll share creative projects I’m excited about, and ones that didn’t quite go as planned. We’ll chat about the ups and downs of doing creative work and I’ll share any insights I stumble upon around what that means in today’s world – or you can just let me know if you have the answer, thanks!

Okay! I did it. I wrote this post and I’m going to hit publish, without reading it over five thousand times and second guessing everything, as I tend to do. Yay! Victory Numero Uno.

If you somehow stumbled upon this post, please introduce yourself!…And also let me know how that happened. I’m seriously very curious.

Talk soon!
Amanda

 

24 May

Oh hey, welcome.

Hi there! Welcome to my newly refurbished online home. Thanks for stopping by.

Stay tuned for the latest updates on my design work, inspiration, and more!