Thanksgiving 2016- Breitenbush Hot Springs

We just returned from the Best / West Coast where we spent a whirlwind holiday weekend outside in nature with my side of the family. It is best summed up by Ken’s instagram post:

 

#Truth

#YesBingeBeforeCleanse

My parents have spent the past 20 Thanksgivings at Breitenbush Hot Springs, at the base of Oregon’s Cascade Mountains.  So instead of indulging in food, turkey, booze, and football, we spent Thanksgiving off the grid in natural hot springs, rain, lush forests, and togetherness (vegetarian togetherness). My brother and his family have gone the past seven years, so this year, we decided to make the trek out to Oregon. It was quite the haul, but it was a special and joyous time for the cousins and all of us to be together.

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4th of July Weekend 2016

Happy short week (and happy belated birthday, USA)! I hope everyone had a nice holiday weekend and off to a great July (holllllly smokes). As always when with family, we had a great weekend celebrating with my brother and his family in Seattle. The only bad news was that Ken was unable to fly out as planned due to a storm on Friday night in NYC. After 4 hours on the tarmac and his flight being canceled, he sadly didn’t make it to the west coast. We missed him but will be reunited with him for 10 days on Friday! Here is a recap of our weekend!

 

We went sailing in the evening on Lake Washington (pictured: son Cruzzie, brother Giora).

We went sailing in the evening on Lake Washington (pictured: son Cruzzie, brother Giora).

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Christmas 2015

A short and sweet, simple Merry Christmas to you and yours. As you read this, we are somewhere on an airplane traveling from Florida to Sunriver, Oregon to spend a week in the snow with my side of the family.

 

Happy everything!

Happy everything! And yes, those sweaters are hand knit art work created by my mother. Next on her list of projects, a matching sweater for me! I can’t wait.

Happy happy!!!

Happy happy!!!

 

Although most people take the week off from posting on the world wide web, I will be doing regular posts (#JosieGirlNeverStops), so please stop on by! Thanks so much for all your continuous support and viewership (#ForeverGrateful) and have a very Merry Holiday.

Anika Yael Natori, aka, The Josie Girl

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Thanksgiving 2015

It is rare to find friends that are family; people you love unconditionally and can be completely comfortable with in any setting. Luckily, we have found our New York non-family family, so it was an extra special treat to be invited to spend Thanksgiving with them in Aspen, Colorado. HOLY COW was it amazing, perfect, and incredible. Take a look at our pictures (#humblebrag #sorryimnotsorry)!

 

The kids get along swimmingly. Best friends for life.

The kids get along swimmingly. Best friends for life.

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Kiini Bikini

The Kiini bikini! This new popular all-over-the-place bikini is completely mainstream, but I am hopping on the bandwagon. Obsessed! I love the look, the colors, the vibe. This crochet bikini is handmade, so no two are alike. The classic triangle form is the perfect shape and the material embodies the bohemian Josie Girl vibe. What is not to love?

 

Crochet form.

Crochet form. (Note: this is inside out — the tag should be inside and not showing)

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Early 2015 Reading List

Happy Monday! I hope everyone had a restful weekend — I know I did! Before I get going with the books I want to read, here is a must-watch video. I have watched it numerous times and I cry every single time….so watch it….And Yes, I tend to watch more videos than I read. Not that I have a lot of time / energy / stamina these days, but there are SOOOO many books that I want to read! Just need to make it more of a priority (and find more hours in my day)…..here are the books that I want to devour in the coming weeks and months!

 

1. All the Light We Cannot See (Anthony Doerr)

 

Screen Shot 2015-01-10 at 7.52.57 PM

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Saltine Cookies

Top

For those of you who have been reading the blog for a long time (first, huge THANK YOU!), then you have already seen this post. But I can’t help myself and need to include it again because these holiday treats are SO VERY DELICIOUS and addictive. And if you are new to the blog (welcome, and thank you!), enjoy the very best cookie / goodie / chocolate heaven / salty-sweet-thang. Hands down, the best holiday treat. And because you will not be able to stop at just one cookie (or ten of them), better get started on your holiday workout.

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Sunriver 2013

We are in Florida now after an incredibly relaxing and enjoyable week in Sunriver, Oregon with my parents.  Although not as bad as last year, we missed a connection on the way out and had to rent a car and drive four hours from Portland.  No matter what a pain in the arse traveling across the country is with two kids, two car seats, a stroller and five million bags, it is worth every second to be with my parents. Enjoy the pics!

The area around the Sunriver resort is usually covered with snow this time of year.  At least we got to enjoy the high desert scenery.

The area around the Sunriver resort is usually covered with snow this time of year.  Not this time.  So no ski-out cross country skiing.  At least we got to enjoy the high desert scenery.

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Xmas with the Natoris

We safely arrived yesterday in Oregon where we will spend the next week lounging, eating, skiing, reading, and laughing with my parents, also known as Nana and Tata. (I wrote that sentence before our flight.  We are here missing a bag and had to drive four hours through the mountains because we missed our connecting flight and they couldn’t guarantee us on another flight until Tuesday.  So we are flustered, but yes, still safe!) We are all so happy to be with them and to celebrate the holidays.  As Ken’s parents just left for the Philippines to be with Ken’s grandmother, we had a “pretend Christmas” (as Cruzzie said) at the end of last week at the Natoris. Here are Christmas posts from 2012 and 2011, and now CURRENT shots of the Natori Srs apartment from this year! Enjoy!

White Winter Wonderland! Last year, the decor was pink, this year, ALL WHITE.

White Winter Wonderland! Last year, the decor was pink, this year, ALL WHITE.

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Bra Guide For Flat Chests

NEWS SHOCKER! I have no boobs. I mean, literally, nothing. They are cute, petite, and basically…just nipples. Sometimes, I wish I had bigger boobs, but then I realize how care-free life is and how easy no boobs are (easy to dress, easy to run, no males drooling over them). So boob-less I will always be! However, bra shopping for flat chests isn’t easy…saying I wear a 32A is a stretch. For many years, I struggled with what fit correctly with my no-chested-body. But thanks to Lynne (National Fit Specialist and Manager of Retail Services for Natori Intimate Apparel) and my bra-fitting this year, I now have the perfect bras for flat chests! Drumroll….

 

My current collection.

My current collection.

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Natori Gift Guide

YEAH, I KNOW, this post is totally in your face about buying Natori, but hey, that is in part what I’m about. And not only should I promote Natori items, but I want to as well! So here are my top Natori gift items for Holiday 2013. And some pictures of the Natori (senior’s) Winter Wonderland apartment.

 

The holiday tree at my in laws apartment (Josie Natori)

The holiday tree at my in laws apartment (Josie Natori)

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Thanksgiving 13

Happy December! And Happy belated Thanksgiving! I hope you all had a great holiday weekend celebrating your loved ones, your life, and your health. We had a terrific holiday full of resting and family activities with the Natoris, although we missed my parents and brother who were all together celebrating Thanksgiving a la Oregon style. Here are some pictures, thanks for looking at them!

My everything.

My everything.

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Holiday Weekend

Not that there is much difference between a weekend and a weekday during my summer vacation in Oregon, but we have had a great last couple of days. My brother and his family came down from Seattle, and there was a constant influx of noise, commotion, and chaos, combined with love, laughter, and happiness. When the two of our families are at my parents house (minus Ken, who is working in New York but coming out on Friday!), there is A LOT going on, but we all love being together so much. Here is a look at what we did. A lot of outdoor activities, as normal:

We set up a tent in the backyard for the cousins to sleep in.

We set up a tent in the backyard for the cousins to sleep in.

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Passover Traditions

Morning! For those of you who celebrated Passover last night — or who are celebrating it again tonight (and even for you NON Jews who want a special treat!), my lovely friend Heidi-ho (nickname) made an AMAZING treat for all us Josie Girls (Jews, Christians, and all religions alike)! Since I am solo in Florida with the kids, and therefore being a bad Jew and eating bread, more bread, and MORE bread, AND not having a seder or two or ten to attend….. I am thrilled Heidi-ho is riding to the rescue with a great post on the tradition of Passover .and the food that comes with it! (And come back for another guest blog on Friday on Easter traditions from Georgia Frasch). Without further ado, my lovely friend and guest blogger Heidi will take it from here:

Heidi. Don't you just LOVE her already? So fitting (jew special post) that we met each other in 1996 on an Israel Team Tour. She didn't know Oregon had jews, and I had no idea someone could be so fun. (Good trade off, huh?)

Heidi. Don’t you just LOVE her already? So fitting that we met each other in 1996 on an Israel Team Tour. She didn’t know Oregon had Jews, and I had no idea someone could be so fun. (Good trade off, huh?)

Does your kitchen smell like brisket today?  Ah, mine does!  The sweet celebration of Passover is upon us and, while we may lose out on bread and some other fun carbs for eight days, we do okay with some Passover specialties.  Favorites like matzo ball soup (this is the version simmering on my stove this year!), matzo brie (trust me), matzo bark (the kosher-for-passover version of this) and I haven’t even started on the real desserts yet.  Stay with me – it’s coming.

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Treat Cards

Who loves being thoughtful and writing cards, but HATES sending them out? Me! There is something way too tedious  about getting a card, handwriting your note, finding a stamp, writing out the address, and mailing. I love the idea of being thoughtful and writing cards — for thank yous, for birthdays, for any occasion. But usually, I become overly lazy and just skip it. Until I discovered treat! And boy, is it a TREAT!

treat

Treat is an online store that sends out personalized greeting cards that really stand out. A new company (originally a part of Tiny Prints), Treat has set up a system where you can create a personalized greeting card that reflects your style with your own photos, nicknames, and thoughts. And then you can even make it so Treat mails the card directly to the recipient. Unbelievable!

card pack

Super easy!

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Champagne in a Can!

I don’t drink much, but when I do, it is often with my in-laws, which means champagne (my mother-in-law has definitely rubbed off on me!)  Mrs. Natori is picky about her champagne, but me… not so much.  What I have discovered is a cute new way to drink it!

can

PINK! CAN! STRAW! SPARKLE! POP!

Nothing says “celebrate” more than champagne. In a can. In a PINK can. With a straw. A PINK straw. Oh my god, it is like I died and went to heaven!

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Christmas 2012

Back in the saddle after Monday’s hiatus. It’s been a long week –  overly tired (baby Zoe is teething so no sleep for me), busy traveling (quick family-of-four trip to Florida), and gift wrapping (lots of presents), therefore had no time to write. I hope everyone had a super duper Christmas (and Hannukah earlier in the month!) We had a great night with my in-laws and family. Here are some highlights of Christmas Day Night with the Natoris!

holiday outfits

Holiday outfits.

pink tree

PINK TREE! Electric, neon, modern, cool, fresh, unique, and awesome!

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Eugenia Kim Hats

Hats are like workout clothes: they can be difficult to buy because they seem so damn expensive, but then you end up wearing them EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. So it is worth it in the end.  Also, you want nice looking hats (and workout clothes, too) as there is nothing worse than a bad hat in grey cold weather. Eugenia Kim hats are my splurge.

Eugenia Kim launched her namesake hat line in the early 2000s, and won a CFDA award for Accessories Design (2004). She is known for her innovative wovens and inventive, quirky felts and straws trimmed with vintage ribbons and feathers. Her hats and head accessories are sold at Barneys, Bergdorf Goodman, Neiman Marcus, Saks, net-a-porter, shop bop, Zappos, as well as 200 smaller boutiques. DAMN girl. But of course, she has her own e-commerce site, so go there! Straight to the source!

hats

Check out the hat selection. LOVE.

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Etsy Holiday Shop

I love Etsy.  And I love pop-up shops.  So while I was on a three hour day-date with my better half last weekend in SoHo (best three hours EVER), I couldn’t have been more excited to stumble across the ETSY HOLIDAY SHOP!

the sign

The sign outside of the store. This is what immediately got my attention.

For those of you unfamiliar with Etsy, it is a website that allows local artisans and merchants to sell handmade or vintage items to a broad community.  It is a great one-stop shop for anything homemade, and it is a terrific place to find unique gifts.  The holiday store does a great job of bringing that web concept to brick-and-mortar.  As described on the site, “Imagine a magical place where you can shop directly from the collections of guest curators, meet the artists and collectors of the marketplace in person, learn to make something with your own two hands, and enlist the help of a whole squad of Etsy experts for your gift list. It’s Etsy in real life!” So true, and so magical.  But unfortunately, the shop is closing this Saturday (December 8th)…. so go now!

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Socks!

Need a simple stocking stuffer? Fun socks are always the perfect gift as they fit everyone; are bright, colorful and cheery; and come in a range of prices. Socks are like candles: everyone loves them but will not splurge on them for themselves… they are a perfect, easy gift. I try to get Ken to wear fun socks to work with his suits. Help push the movement. No more boring dark work socks!

Add some flavor to your Josie Guy’s suit!

Here are my top sock choices, for you or your guy (excluding my hand knit socks from my mother that I get for every holiday).

Corgi Socks

Cotton, wool, and cashmere options are available at Corgi, an old school English company.

stripes

Hello fun stripes!

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