Summer 2019 Running Playlist

Yes, I run a lot, but it is during the Summer months that I do my hardest training and running. My light schedule, the perfect Oregon weather, and upcoming Fall marathon makes these months the perfect time to run hard. Here is my summer 2019 running playlist:

 

Running in Oregon is ideal: beautiful non humid weather and incredible views on every twist and turn. Yesterday, on my long run, I had the privilege of running along the Willamette River….

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Currently Loving July 2019

Here we are, (mid) JULY! And here is what I am currently loving this month! And please share with me what you are loving — I love hearing what books, articles, songs, sweatshirts, anything and everything that you are loving oh so much.

 

1. Avett Brothers song “No Hard Feelings

 

Good song — makes me want to cry. But super musical and beautiful.

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Turkey Jerky Sticks

Readers of the blog know that I love gourmet grocery stores. It so happens that I go to the grocery most days while in Eugene. The local grocery store is my dream come true and I could literally spend hours patrolling the aisles to see what’s new and what they have to offer. Last week while jetlagged and bleary from our France travels, I went searching for good, high-protein snacks. I have always liked beef jerky, but never loved it. So when I found these three different brands of turkey sticks, I knew it was going to be a good snack summer. These three are my top favorite and I hope they have them in the NYC stores (and if not, thank you world wide web, not sure I know what to do without you!)…..

 

Top 3

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Paris June 2019 Highlights

Bonjour! My apologies for the slow posts these past two weeks — it was quite difficult to get on the internet to do any posts especially because I had a major computer issue a…..turns out, all is okay with my computer but the head of the charger died — who knew that that was a thing? In any case, I am now back in the USA *with* a working computer, so back to normal post schedules. I wanted to first share with you all some of the pictures and highlights of my time in Paris with the kids — we did go to the South of France for an amazing trip as well, and I will post those later. In the meantime, enjoy these photos!

 

In the Tuileries, one of our favorite activities is the trampoline park. It is an old school little hut with a man that got to know us because we went so often. Everyday when we would get there he would say hello and when we would leave, he would say “See you tomorrow.”

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Chicago IRCE / RetailX

Guest Post Alert:  The Josie Girl is in France with the kids.  Her computer died en route from Paris to the South of France (tough life), so I agreed (was told) to come up with some content.  I was in Chicago for a (possibly interesting?) work trip this week.  So bear with me and enjoy!

Dinner Tuesday at Soho House Chicago, hosted by ShoppingGives, a new platform that promotes corporate social responsibility (CSR) among retailers. They asked  me to record a podcast on how Natori thinks about CSR.  It sounded like a cool initiative, so I agreed to do it.  A fun dinner at a cool spot.

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Pari Roller

Greetings from France!  I came with the kids and have loved every minute I have in this beautiful country. I love the light, food, fashion, language, art and culture. And now, I have my favorite event to add to the list: Pari Roller. Pari Roller is a weekly event in Paris full of roller skaters and roller bladers along specified routes in the city. Every Friday, all year long, starting at 9:30 pm, skaters have the opportunity to skate on closed down roads for 40 kilometers. Since roller skating has become a new passion and hobby, I was excited to try it out and be a part of this unique and special celebration. At the last minute, I convinced my friend Jean from NYC to come with me for a portion of the trip *IF* she roller skated with me that night. Always positive and enthusiastic, she said she had not been on skates for 35 years but was confident in her ability and thought it sounded fun. Jean is an incredibly upbeat, fashionable and creative friend, so it was no surprise that she picked out an outfit that corresponded with her skates.

 

Jean flew to Paris with her complete outfit (on the right). I thought it would be a great idea to match her, so the DAY OF, I went to Zara and lo and behold, found the silver pants. It was like I won the lottery I was so excited.

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All About Color With Lucie Ayres

Over the past several years, friend Lucie Ayres has guest posted here. Not only do I love it (writer’s block solution and busy schedule!) but I also love Lucie. She is full of pizazz, style, and is a super talented interior designer. To see her previous posts, go here and here. Today, she is presenting ALL ABOUT COLOR. Which I love, because if you know me, I am ALLLLLLL about color. Take it away, Lucie and THANK YOU!

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It’s SPRING  (officially Summer, but hey, early summer) – a colorful time of year, one that inspires the ol’ spring cleaning, and also the busiest time for many interior designers.  It’s that REFRESH MY SPACE moment. Sure, you can clean up, and add some new throw pillows into the mix (new pillows are NEVER a bad idea) but if you REALLY want to update a space  – it’s all about thinking about your walls… particularly the paint color. That much might be obvious, but what’s not obvious is the type of paint you buy.

 

Paint samples by DRIKOLOR

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O.A.R. at Pier 17

This winter, I posted on Pier 17 after I took the kids skating there with their friends.  I loved the new waterfront space, and was wondering how it was going to be used when the weather warmed up.  The answer?  Concerts!   Perfect.   And what makes Pier 17 even more prefect?  O.A.R.!  Readers of the blog know that Ken and I have a history with the band (Ken’s favorite), which goes back to when Ken won the chance to do a live sound check with them at a silent auction.  They were amazing and Ken has stayed in touch with them.  He is basically a groupie on the side.  Enjoy the pics from their concert last week!

Pier 17 is just off South Street Seaport extending into the East River.  The roof and views are amazing.

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Painted Leather Jacket: Scarlett Cussell

And what do you know — summer is now upon us. It has been an insanely busy week with school ending and all the packing and planning and HOW DID TIME FLY feelings. So much to do, so little time. So instead of focusing on everything that needs to get done between now and Sunday when we depart NYC for the whole summer, here is my new favorite addition to my wardrobe! A leather jacket — and not just any leather jacket — a PAINTED leather jacket with so much symbolism and personal touches that it makes me cry out of happiness.

 

My jacket.

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Bar Pisellino

On a beautiful summery day last weekend, we went with friends-that-are-family to Bar Pisellino, a bar that I had read about and was so excited to try out. If you know me, I have been obsessed with Aperol Spritzes for the past 12 months, and Bar Pisellino not only serves them, but has them on TAP. YUP — Aperol ON DRAFT.

 

Nothing better than summer nights in Manhattan….especially with epic and gorgeous skies as documented by @ken.natori

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CFDA Awards 2019

Every first Monday in June, I attend the CFDA Awards with my mother-in-law. It is a fun evening of wild fashion, mega celebrities, and creative fashion designers. Although no one cares about a stay-at-home-mom-math-tutor-lady, I thoroughly enjoy people watching and taking in all the fashion. Here are pictures of last night’s event! And to see all the professional shots of the evening, go here.

 

Getting ready is no joke! But of course, as it is the end of the year, I still have massive amounts of tutoring and family obligations to attend to….so I had my hair done in my tutoring session.

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Voice of the Free- Center of Hope

Hope everyone had a great Memorial Day weekend!  Ken was gone last week in Asia and came back over the weekend.  While in Manila, he re-visited the Center of Hope, a shelter that Natori has been supporting.  Here he is with an update!


 

I was introduced to the global epidemic of child / human trafficking through the amazing Cecilia Flores-Oebanda a few years ago.  A victim of child trafficking herself, Cecilia has devoted her life to both rehabilitating and supporting its victims, and also helping root out and prosecute its organizers and enablers.  The global child / human trafficking network is both organized and widespread, and thanks to Cecilia’s Voice of the Free (previously called the Visayan Forum Foundation) in the Philippines and similar organizations worldwide, at least some of its perpetrators have been caught and imprisoned.

I visited the Center of Hope a year ago, and was thrilled to be able to return last week to see the progress and visit with the amazingly strong survivors.

Located outside of Manila, the Center of Hope’s main purpose is to rehabilitate and support victims of child trafficking. The girls are provided shelter, education, and support as they grapple with all they have been put through.

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Rise Brewing Oat Milk

I live for my hot brewed coffee every morning — and I can’t imagine life without it. But every so often, I want an iced coffee mid day. Not only for the extra oomph and caffeine boost, but also for the flavor. Nothing is as good as coffee (except maybe tequila). I recently found this bottled iced coffee made with oat milk — it’s like all my dreams come true! Rise Brewing Oat Milk Latte –a dessert in a can! Oh so delicious.

 

Slender, petite, and the right size.

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Needlepoint Belt

For the past three years, my son has had a dress code at school of coat and tie. Next year, he will also have to wear a belt. No surprise, I like to put Cruzzie in colorful, playful, and patterned clothes everyday, and so when I went to look for a belt, I knew that I didn’t want a simple leather one that yelled BORING. So instead, I thought a skeleton one would add some humor and fun to his outfits at the same time as being neutral. A dear friend told me about the company Smathers and Branson, which makes cute needlepoint belts by hand. All of the patterns are too cute (Grateful Dead??? Amazing) and add a little pizzazz and flavor.

 

Hand-stitched needlepoint

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Natori Sleek Bralette

I am a prude and hate to show skin, but a fashionable friend convinced me to buy the Natori Sleek Bralette as it was a must have for layering…..so I did, but then had no idea how to style it. Thank goodness for genius ideas, because she told me to wear it under a blazer with high waisted pants. So last week, on my mother-in-law’s 72nd birthday, I decided to wear one of her creations for her dinner…..YES daring, YES out of my comfort zone, but YES fun.

 

It comes in two different colors: white and black. I decided to purchase the black because it was less out of the ordinary for me, and because I was already taking a risk, I wanted to make it more manageable.

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Tusia Photo Shoot

Our next door neighbors run fashion house, Oscar de la Renta, and so when they approached us to see if Tusia would like to shoot for their kids ad campaign, we couldn’t say no. Although I am not a fan of the modeling business (what kind of message does it send the child? Is beauty more important than school? etc….), I felt that this was a once in a lifetime experience that we couldn’t pass up — not many people can say that their first and only photo shoot was for Oscar de la Renta. Last Friday was definitely a learning experience for the two of us — surrounded by new things and processes…  I am not sure I love any of it — regardless, I am so happy that we did it. And absolutely everyone involved in the photo shoot was kind, loving, and thoughtful. Take a look at the behind the scene pics — and as soon as we get the final photos (if she doesn’t get cut — you never know!), I will share!

 

First, we had a fitting two days before the shoot. During this fitting, it was also a try out for the other models. The other four models were professional and hired children models — a very dark and weird place (IMHO).

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Ralph’s Coffee

After months of hearing about Ralph’s Coffee, I finally made it inside. And it is even more divine and fabulous than I ever imagined — chic, beautiful, and old school glamorous. Located inside the Ralph Lauren flagship store on 72nd and Madison , Ralph’s Coffee is a relaxing and delicious place to grab a drink and snack (Ralph Lauren partnered up with the team at La Colombe to create Ranph’s Coffee’s signature blend). It also helps that the people inside are just as beautiful as you would expect, making for great people watching.

 

Sidewalk art signage. Although the store does not open until 10 am, Ralph’s Coffee opens at 8 am. I can’t wait to go back!!!

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Brene Brown

Brene Brown is all over the place right now; podcasts, netflix specials, books, and even billboards. And there is a reason why. She is wise, relatable, informative, honest, and real. Known as a researcher and story teller, she is a self help guru that anyone and everyone can learn from. I watched her ultra famous Ted Talk (one of the top 5 Ted talks of all time — over 40 million views!) years ago, and find myself re-wathching it every year to relearn all that she has to share. She has spent years researching shame and vulnerability and shares it in an honest and approachable manner. And her most recent talk, a netflix special on courage (“The Call To Courage“), shame, joy, and human connection is amazing.   I found myself crying, laughing, and wanting immediately to REWATCH it all over again. It is that good.

 

Watch it now. Although, if you haven’t yet watched her 20 minute Ted Talk on Shame, that is where you should start. THENNNNNNN, you should watch this hour plus talk on Netflix. It is new (came out on April 19th — a couple weeks ago).

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Nupie Sandals

One of my favorite purchases from my recent trip to Paris was a pair of Boho Chic sandals. Peruvian ribbon, Italian leather, French company….makes sense, right? I am so happy I discovered Nupie . They are colorful (at Bon Marche, the sandals were offered in three different color ways and I wanted all three), comfortable, practical, and unique. I love how the ribbon is distinctively Peruvian (and made in Peru) and that the soles are high quality leather Italian so they feel like well made classic sandals. I can’t wait to wear them all summer long.

 

I chose the green pair but was SO close to buying the pink one. But I liked them just as much the blue pair….ahhhh the options!

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Quick Paris Trip With Josie Natori

This past weekend, I was a true jetsetter and flew to Paris for a getaway with my mother-in-law. Yes, spoiled. Yes, privileged.  Yes, extravagant. But oh so fun and wonderful. As I age (thank you, 40), I realize that time together with loved ones becomes more and more important. And even though we live in the same city, I rarely have the opportunity to sit down with my mother-in-law just to be together.  We had a great time, simply walking around, shopping, eating, drinking champagne, conversing, and soaking up the beauty of Paris. Here are pictures. Enjoy!

 

I am a giant compared to my oh so glamorous MIL….

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Sakara Daydreamer Dressing

Creamy and oh so dreamy. This salad dressing from my new favorite cookbook “Eat Clean Play Dirty,” is great to make for the week ahead and drizzle on crudites or any salad. It was so good that immediately after I made the first batch, I QUADRUPLED the recipe to have more to grab for any and every salad!

 

Ingredients:

 

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