Seven Links for Sunday
A few weeks back I loaded up four dogs and a three-year-old for a trek out to Huntington Dog Beach. (I’m mentioning this for two reasons. First, to tie my pictures into this Seven Links for Sunday post and second because it was a lot of dogs and a child and I did it and we all survived unscathed.) As I packed up the car with towels and sunscreen and a cooler full of egg salad sandwiches, I thought to myself, is this crazy? Without traffic it’s a ninety minute drive, my niece can’t swim and four dogs is a bit much. Not all of the dogs must go. But then I thought, if I leave one home I’ll feel terrible. Besides, once I get there and unload the car, it’ll be grand. So, I did and it was. Sand between my toes, sunshine on my back and crazy search dogs playing fetch with Everly made for a perfect day. We must go back.
And now, to the seven links.
One for Lust
I follow Banded Pines on Instagram. They make dog collars. I went to check out their website this week and found their collars cost fifty dollars. It made me gasp, but also increased my desire. If you’re interested, there’s an explanation on the website under FAQ about why the collars are so expensive and how they’re designed for people that like high quality. This is where they got me. I love high quality. High quality is my thing. That’s why, perhaps, I’m so broke after my kitchen remodel. Alas, for now, one of these lovely collars must wait.
One for a Skeptic
So, there is always a dog toy claiming to be indestructible. As a rule, I don’t let my search dog Kinsey play with toys. When I break the rule, the toys last three minutes. She loves nothing more than shredding a stuffed duck, and then I feel like I wasted $14.95. So, perhaps, this Goughnut will provide her with hours of entertainment. In fact, a friend with a large Malinois promised me it would. Kinsey must, at some point, test it out.
One for Fall
It’s Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale time! YEAH! The Nordstrom’s sale is my favorite of the year because it’s sale prices on new items for the upcoming season, instead of reduced prices on clothing left over from last season. My mom and I go every year. We each bought one of these sweaters from Leith. They are the perfect layer for a California winter, long and soft and flowy. It’s like wrapping yourself in a cloud. Buy one, now. (When I last checked, the website was out! I’m sorry. But hope on over to your local Nordstrom and perhaps you will luck out!)
Two for the Tummy
I like a baking challenge. My boss does not eat gluten or dairy, and is always glum at staff potlucks because there are no desserts that she can enjoy. Because, really, can you think of a delicious dessert without gluten or dairy? It’s a challenge. Well, I found the solution–Pinch of Yum’s Five Ingredient Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies. My boss loved them and asked for the recipe, and when I took them to a family dinner people that are neither gluten nor dairy intolerant ate more than one. Winning quote came from my cousin: This cookie tastes like the best part of a brownie, the chewy crunchy corner. Add to it the fact they’re simple to bake, and it’s a winner. #illhaveseconds
I’ve been looking for a decadent chocolate zucchini bread for years. In fact, last summer I played around with a couple of recipes and created my own. I was happy with it. Then I made up a batch of Sally’s Chocolate Zucchini Cake last weekend. It was one hundred percent better than any recipe I’d ever found. The texture of the cake was moist and dense, it had a rich chocolate flavor and it was not too sweet. The recipe called for frosting, but in my opinion, it didn’t need it. Instead of using two cake pans, I poured the batter into a Bundt pan and a loaf pan, and cut it into thick slices. Then, just before serving I put a slice into the microwave for a few seconds to make the chocolate chips melty. This kind of dessert is why I bake! Luscious.
Two for the Brain
I love a good mystery. When I was in elementary school, it was Nancy Drew. In high school, Dick Frances. Throughout adulthood it was Robert B. Parker. Lately, I’m smitten with Inspector Gamache. He’s the kind of man I could fall in love with—kind, thoughtful and persistent. These books start off slow, like a good British Mystery. The characters are complex, the settings are beautifully woven into the story and then someone is killed and I can’t put it down. I finished the fourth in the series yesterday. Read one!
My goal this year is mindfulness, and so I’ve been seeking out ways become more thoughtful. This article from the Washington Post talked about how important it is to be alone, and the fact that these days we so rarely are. My favorite quote: Only when the mind is at rest can we actually hear ourselves think. Most days, my mind is going one thousand miles a second. This article is a good reminder to seek out opportunities to be alone, and to forget my phone at home every now and again.
And there it is, seven things to keep you spending, cooking and reading. Perhaps I should reread that article on slowing down. 🙂
This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting brands I love!