Currently Loving August 2022

Ah summer — I love you. So very much. Here is what I am loving this month:

 

1. Never Have I Ever – Season 3

 

Season 3 comes out on August 12th and I cannot wait! I am so so so so excited! Such great, fun, easy TV!

 

2. Oregon Coast

 

The Oregon Coast is incredibly special and unlike any other beach. One of the great things about it is that it is drastically colder than inland so it is a great place to go to escape the heat. Especially since the Willamette Valley has been in the 90-100 range, the coast has been great. There are dunes to play on, beautiful hikes, and forests to explore.

 

3. Josie Natori in the NYTimes

 

My mother-in-law was featured in the Sunday Styles this past weekend — looking oh so chic and glamorous as always.  Wearing Josie Natori!

 

4. Pop Tarts Bites

 

Pop Tart Bites — yes please!!! One of the junk foods I love (pop tarts) and now in mini form — what can be better? I found these at the airport when I went to pick my son up from camp and we were both so excited to see this new item!

 

5. The Summer I Turned Pretty — Book Trilogy

 

Tusia and I devoured the first season of the show “The Summer I Turned Pretty” and so when recommended this trilogy for her, I bought it immediately. But instead of her reading it, I have been reading it. I am already on the third book and loving it. Yes, it is for tweens, but it is still good and fun.

 

6. Dave’s Hot Chicken

 

A chain food that I had never heard about — that only sells fried chicken in various forms, but a huge hit with the entire family. They even have a kale slaw to eat for the people that love greens (me). The sliders were delicious, too. Everything was a hit.

 

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Of course, top of my list of things I love right now is that my son is back from camp and I get to hug and kiss him every minute. I love the family time of summer, the chance to unwind and not have a routine, and to take things slowly. I hope you are having a great start to your week — Happy August.

Anika Yael Natori, aka, The Josie Girl

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Ice Cream Cake

Apparently I am on a dessert kick because all my recent posts have been about dessert — apologies — but this one NEEDS to be shared (again). I posted this recipe seven years ago (yes, I have been doing this blog for a looooong time) and it is so good that I need to remind you about it. Ice Cream Cake made with Ice Cream Sandwiches! I learned this genius recipe hack from my sister-from-another-mister.

 

Finished product! Look how gorgeous — and they are even more delicious.

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Homemade Baklava

I love most desserts (yes, I know, sugar isn’t good for you, but I love it), but especially baklava. It is one of my absolute favorites (along with red velvet cake, key lime pie, blueberry crisps….so many), and yet I have never made it myself. So during a heat wave in Oregon, I decided IF NOT NOW, THEN WHEN, and made my first homemade baklava, and let me tell you, it is delicious and I plan to make it again! It is that good!

 

Ingredients:

 

 

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Blueberry Frozen Yogurt

One of my favorite activities in the Pacific Northwest is to go fruit picking in the summer. Raspberries, strawberries, cherries, blueberries and peaches. Yesterday, I went blueberry picking (the season is almost over) and within an hour we had over 7 pounds of fresh, delicious, beautiful, organic and inexpensive berries ($19 for 7 pounds).

 

I love this one blueberry picking spot — right near one of my favorite hikes — but there are so many different places you can go and get the berries.

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Provence 2022 Highlights

After Spain, we traveled to Provence where we spent two HOT but glorious weeks. We just returned this past weekend to the States and I am already missing Europe so much. It was a wonderful trip and I am already planning next year’s summers’ adventures. We didn’t do much, but it was all simple and easy, and I loved it all. Here is a look at what we did.

 

The view from my window. We were located in the village and had access to everything right there. We could go to the gelato store in 1 minute and 30 seconds, and same with the bakery. Which of course, what we did twice a day….

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Currently Loving July 2022 Part 2

OH MY GOODNESS STOP SUMMER, STOP! It is going too fast and *GULP* it is almost the end of July! Here is what I am loving.

 

1. Never Have I Ever

 

So yes, the past month I have been with my 75+ parents and my 10 year old daughter, so it is not a shocker that I have been mainly watching teenager shows, but I am OBSESSED with ‘Never Have I Ever.” I love the characters, so charming, cute, loveable. Paxton — I love you.

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Three Favorite Tees

Simple tees are like jeans — so hard to find, great value, and essential for every and all wardrobes. Here are my three favorite tees!

 

1. Cotton Citizen Tokyo Crop

 

Yes, just basic white tee, but I saw this immediately on one of my most stylsih friends and I knew it was special. It looks SO good on. Relaxed, cropped, and the best cotton. A must. Hurry and buy because it is so popular that it sells out immediately when restocked.

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Spain 2022 Highlights

I was fortunate enough to spend the last 2 weeks in Southern Spain with my parents, daughter, and Ken (for a week) where we relaxed and explored together. It was refreshing and rejuvenating to leave the US and get fresh air and tastes of a different culture. Here are the highlights:

 

Every morning, I ran. Over the two weeks, I ran 98 miles. Up hills, down hills, and NEVER on flat surfaces. It was the hardest place I have EVER EVER RUN in my entire life, and I hope that it makes me a stronger (and faster) runner. Each morning, I would dread my run, but I loved it so much afterwards. Plus, it gave me the opportunity to explore my surroundings and really have a feel for the area.

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Currently Loving July 2022

There is a lot to love in July — summer, sunshine, no school, and a shift in seasons; but here are some other things that I am loving this month.

 

1. Gazpacho

There is nothing I love more than gazpacho — it is my all time favorite soup — and I craved it when I was pregnant with Cruzzie the entire pregnancy. So now that I am in Spain, on the few times we have gone out, I have ordered gazpacho — and it has always tasted delicious. I love tasting the different restaurants and styles — all absolutely delicious, healthy, and refreshing.

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Chloe Straw Hat

One of my most stylish friends periodically sends me texts with clothes she thinks I would love (she is always right AND these are the best types of texts to get!). This Spring, she sent me the outfit with a sweatshirt she thought I needed(I did), but I was most interested in her straw bucket hat. Of course, she sent me the information and I immediately purchased it. It is expensive, but I always think cost per wear (if you wear it everyday, you divide the item cost per day), and it turns out to be a steal of a deal! The Chloe x Mifuko straw hat!

 

It is not a hat that looks stylish — but it protects every part of your face from the sun.

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Trader Joe’s Almond Butter Almonds

Who knew that there was such thing as Almond Butter Almonds or Cashew Butter Cashews, but they exist. And they are amazing — and you need to know about them. They are the perfect blend of sweet and filling, and count as a protein snack or a dessert. I love them both so much that before my European vacation, I had to go to Trader Joe’s to load up on them. They are perfect to have in a bag when you just need something to hate (which is always for me).

 

Sweet, salty, crunchy, and the best coated smooth cashew butter ever.

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About Time Coffee

A new kind of coffee company is in NYC and it is going to CHANGE the coffee scene. About Time serves unexpected coffee creations through a speedy on-the-go coffee experience. You order on line on their simple app to the nearest location and then you pick it up. Yes, sounds like a typical coffee place, but in addition to 3 storefronts, they have “locations” around the city that you can schedule your pick up for — and they are there with your cooler and your coffee. They see themselves as magicians introducing modern sensibilities to the traditional cafe offerings…..and I couldn’t agree more!

 

I placed my order to 45th and 5th, and this was my “store.” A nice man with my coffee all ready.

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DWB Dr. Whitney Bowe Beauty

My dermatologist, Dr. Whitney Bowe, not only happens to be the most beautiful person, but also the smartest (don’t you love women who check the boxes off everything???). She has flawless skin, and has forever been committed to achieving and maintaining the health and radiance of her patients’ skin through inside and outside care. She is a big believer in what you put INSIDE your body is just as important as what you do on the outside. Dr. Bowe says that there is a skin-gut-mind connection and this“three-dimensional” approach to skincare, has led her to create her own beauty line, DWB Dr Whitney Bowe Beauty. And it goes without saying, that I am a huge fan. I mean, if Dr. Bowe told me that I could have her skin by wearing a paper bag, I would do it! So when she told me about her new line of products, I knew that it was top of the line and would not disappoint.

 

Dr. Bowe — beautiful inside and outside — and therefore, you must treat your skin from the inside and the outside.

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Bode Vintage Shawl Dress

My mother has been collecting shawls from all over the world her entire life — she literally has cabinets full of hundreds of shawls. Each shawl has a different story and represents the country and its craft work. So when I came across a vintage shawl dress, I had to get. It reminds me of my mother and I absolutely love it. I have been a long time fan of Bode — a NYC menswear company that specializes in one of a kind, handcrafted clothing that is cut from antique fabrics, victorian quilts, grain sacks, and bed linens.

 

Vintage shawl made in to a dress — one of a kind — each is unique and special.

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Currently Loving June 2022

It is almost mid June and so the end-of-school-rush and start of traveling is in full swing. I am trying to pack for two camps, a cross country trip, a Europe trip, and still manage to get the kids to school. Needless to say, I feel like a chicken without a head. All good things, and I am happy to be here and healthy….so here is what I am loving this month.

 

1. Notorious BIG Metro card

 

A lover of BIG, I had to get this special metrocard. Going to frame it — love it. Definitely cost more than a normal metrocard, but it will last a lifetime.

 

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Pizza Calzone

In the constant search to find new recipes and things to eat, my-sister-from-another-mister told me about an easy pizza calzone recipe from NYTimes that everyone in the family loved. Not only was it super easy, but also very tasty. I altered the recipe (shocker) to include more greens, but it is one of those recipes that you can do what you want with it, and it will turn out delicious.

 

Ingredients:

 

filling!

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Summer 2022 Running Playlist

The hot, humid, and slogging runs have begun! Here is what I am enjoying listening to on my runs recently.

 

I saw this advertisement on a run this past week and it made me smile. Super clever.

 

Summer 2022 Running Playlist

 

More (Jan Blomqvist)
Sign of the Times (Nore En Pure)
I’m Not Alone (Calvin Harris, deadmau5)
Spotlight (feat. Sarah Ikumu) (S.A.M, Sarah Ikumu)
Treat You Better – Cassian Remix (RUFUS DU SOL, Cassian)
Sonnentanz – Sun Don’t Shine (Klangkarussel, Will Heard)
Calabria 2008 (Enur, Natasja)
Original Sin (Sofi Tukker)
I Just Wanna Dance (Coldabank. Freedo)
Problems (Don Diablo, JLV, John K)
Let You Go (Diplo, TSHA, Kareen Lomax)
When The Summer Dies (deadmau5, Lights)
Behind The Sun (ODESZA)
Red Lights – EMBRZ Remix (Lane 8, Emmit Fenn, EMBRZ)
Losing It (Fisher)
Belly Dancer (Imanbek, BYOR)
Silence (Dark Heart, NEUBAUER)

 

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Happy running! Happy June! Happy almost Summer!

Anika Yael Natori, aka, The Josie Girl

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Off the Beaten Path Sunglasses

I love sunglasses as they are add style, pizazz, and flavor to any outfit without breaking the bank. And of course, they are essential for sunshine and protecting your eyes (obviously). I love to have a wide selection of sunglasses because you never know what mood or style you want for the day….but I love sunglasses that are off the beaten path and not as mainstream, well known, or at times, expensive. Here are the brands (and styles) that I am currently loving:

 

1. Grey Ant Status

 

I have had the black pair since 2016 and love them so much — and I love this color. Different but great shape.

 

2. Crap Eyewear The Speedway

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Governors Island Glamping

One of my favorite places in NYC is Governors Island, a 172 acre island that is 800 yards from Manhattan (a 7 minute ferry ride!). It is the perfect place to spend a day wandering and feels like a vacation, when it is only minutes away from home (well depending on the traffic….). And even better — you can spend the night there! It is an upscale camping experience and is a memorable and truly perfect way to spend the night. Recently, I took my daughter “glamping” on Governors Island mid week and it was the highlight of our Spring.

 

This is Tusia on Governors Island in 2017. Since then, the green space has turned in to the property for the glamping, Collective Retreats.

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Amundsen Sports

Scandinavians always do EVERYTHING right — not only are the most beautiful people, but they create a standard and quality of products that outdo any other region in the world. So when I found out about Amundsen Sports, a Norwegian outdoor apparel company, I knew that I would love it. And yes, it also helped that one of my closest friends is Norwegian with the chicest taste and style who is even more outdoorsy and adventuresome than I am, is the one who told me about this company.  It didn’t take much and now I am sold — obsessed with my newest Amundsen shorts (to start with) for all my outdoor summer plans.

 

Pop up in Soho! GO, RUN, LOOK, TRY ON!

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Currently Loving May 2022

Memorial Day weekend here we come, which means summer is around the corner! Here is what I am loving this month.

 

1. Basiquat Exhibit: King Pleasure in NYC

 

An absolute must if you are in NYC. 200 never been seen pieces. Well put together, interesting flow, and great commentary and information. Highly recommend!

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L’industrie Pizza

In my constant search of  “the best pizza in NYC,” I landed at L’industrie Pizza in Brooklyn. Ranked by all the food websites as one of the best slices in NYC, we decided to make the trek to Williamsburg to try it out (and by trek, it is really not that far — it is just the mental jump from one borough to the next). And sure enough, it was ever so delicious and worth going to.

 

We placed the order online ahead of time so that it could be there when we got to Brooklyn. (We knew ahead of time that there would be no seats for us, so we wanted to have a picnic in the car).

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