Victoria Beckham Beauty

A dear friend gifted me the most incredible and luxurious set of Victoria Beckham Beauty — and now I am the biggest fan. As soon as I opened the gift, it was like Christmas Morning! I love it all — seriously, LOVE IT ALL (and love you, BK). I am now a huge Victoria Beckham Beauty fan and I want to spread the love to you all,  too. It is the best makeup and a serious competitor to my other favorite makeup Westman Atelier. (Right now, VB Beauty wins in my book).

 

The little pouch! Such a great way to give the makeup as a gift, and then to keep it in and travel with it, too.

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Currently Loving February 2024

January was a long year….and now we are at the shortest month, but it’s still winter (which I don’t love) but this is what I AM loving!

 

1. H Mart Haul

 

H Mart is a Koren grocery store that has every kind of Asian food that you want. Last weekend, we went there as an activity, and there was so much to look at and buy, we could have all stayed there for HOURS! This was some of our goodies that we picked up. Chocopie — HUGE hit with Cruzzie. His favorite — and now I need to go back and get more for him.

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Dog Photos + Exhibit

I love dog photos. I mean, I love my dog. So, I love taking photos of her.  These days, I take more photos of Stevie than I do of my kids!!! I can’t help myself, she is just my love bug.

 

Nothing feels better than cuddling with her.

 

So this past weekend, when Tusia and I passed Fotografiska which had “Best in Show: Contemporary Photos” exhibition, I couldn’t resist! It was a quick and easy visit, but we both LOVED it so much! I couldn’t stop taking photos!

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Mercer Labs

It was arctic temperatures in NYC this past weekend (and week!), which meant, finding fun indoor activities to get us out of the house. So with a little research, I found Mercer Labs, a new light and technology museum in TriBeCa. I had high hopes of this museum as the reviews were great — and it was even better than I expected. Mercer Labs is a 15 room immersive and interactive experience. Each room was SO cool and we absolutely loved every part of it. We stayed for a full hour, but could have easily been there a lot longer.

 

Everything about the museum was terrific — not just the exhibits, but the staff, the cleanliness, all of it.

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Currently Loving January 2024

ANOTHER YEAR, another Currently Loving post! And so here we are! Here is what I am loving:

 

1. No.6 Store Socks

 

My forever style muse sent me an email to get these socks — and whatever she tells me to get, I do! (She used to have her own style newsletter and I wish she still had it!!!). These socks are fun (not necessarily warm for NYC winters, but cute and stylish) and I can’t wait to wear them!

 

2. Cityscape Needlepoint Project

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Montana Winter Break

FIRST OF ALL -Happy New Year! 2024 — here we are, (and let’s make it a great year)! Secondly, I am so sorry for disappearing. Yes, I disappeared. In December, I taught, got sick, went on trips to Florida and Montana, and then came back to NYC to just jump right back into teaching…..it’s been a blur. Oh and yeah, the first week back teaching, I got sick again — damn kids and their germs!!! But I am back. It will be my first time ever trying to teach full time and write this blog, so it might take a while to get in to the rhythm, but I love this blog, so not giving it up! So thank you for being patient with me as I figure out how to do everything in one day! In the meantime, I want to share pictures with you from Montana because this vacation was spectacular. One of a kind, and I feel so lucky to have gone.

 

The colors — all the colors — night and day are one of a kind. Spectacular. Here we are with the six kids taking sleds up a teeny tiny hill to sled down.

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Lunar Phase Calendar

Every year, for the holidays, my mom gives me a lunar phase calendar. It is one of my favorite traditions (receiving this gift) and one of my favorite gifts ever. I always post it up on the back of my office closet door, so that I can look at the moon phases during the year. I know it sounds random, but I look more often than you think one would. I love knowing about the cycles of the moon, and knowing exactly when the moon is full.

 

Comes in a tube — easy to send! This year, since we will not be with my parents for the holidays, my mom shipped (thank you, Mama!) a care package with presents for all of us in the family. This one — aside from all her handmade knitting and embroidery work — is always my favorite gift.

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April Vase

Over Thanksgiving when we were at our brother/sister from another mister (friends that are truly family), they had set the most beautiful table for dinner. And as always, everything they do, is perfection and makes me want to copy every last detail (imitation is the best form of flattery?). My main take away was the flower vase — yes, a vase — but so so beautiful, unique, and oh so perfect.

 

Look at the perfect Thanksgiving table!

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Craftsman and Wolves Granola

I AM A GRANOLA SNOB. I say that all the time, because it is true — I love love love granola. And I eat it everyday, but it has to be good granola. My all time favorite still is the Eugene Aunt Maple’s Crunchy Granola, but when in San Francisco, I was (thankfully!) introduced to a new one — Craftsman and Wolves  — and it was so good that I had to bring three packages home. Even more perfect, we walked by the bakery on our food tour, so I was able to quickly run in and buy the granola (as well as some other treats to eat on the spot).

 

Yes, in my tiny carry on, I brought these three packages home. I would have brought more if I had more space….

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Avital Food Tours

We just returned from our 4 day Thanksgiving Break to our besties in the bay area. We had the BEST time — came back with a very full stomach and extremely full heart. I laughed the entire 4 days (and ate the rest of the time) — all in all, the best time ever. One of my favorite parts was the Avital Food Tour — just the 8 of us on a guided food tour of the Mission District in San Francisco. We had a tour guide take us, by foot, to four different restaurants as a progressive meal. Each one was delicious and something I would have NEVER tried before.

 

California – I love you. West Coast – I love you.

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Needlepoint Canvases

Holiday season is upon us, which means more traveling and time to needlepoint! I love getting lots of canvases to work on during my travels (and down time), and here are some websites that I have recently loved purchasing my different canvases.

 

1. The Red Thread Atelier

 

I bought several canvases from this new website, and I love them all. Especially love this future pouch for all my emergency candy!

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Currently Loving November 2023

CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT THANKSGIVING IS PRACTICALLY HERE? I have no idea how that happened. Literally, the other day, I was convinced it was September (maybe I am losing my mind a little). A lot has been happening on my end — I accepted a job to teach again, applying my son to high schools, dealing with the insanity and sadness of the antisemitism in the world, and just trying to balance everything else out! It has been an adjustment (and I haven’t even started full time yet!)….so here is what I am loving this month.

1. Christie’s Auction Sale

 

Did you know that during the auction sales, anyone can go to the auction house (for free!) and see all the art work? I stopped by this past week for 30 minutes and it was glorious — just a quick runby to see all the work (and they have the prices on them, which is FASCINATING!). I loved this Frida Kahlo painting that she did of her sister….

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Watson Adventures Scavenger Hunts

I had lots of different ideas for my son’s 14th birthday party, but due to last minute planning and bad weather, we ended up with an organized scavenger hunt in Grand Central. Although thrown together last minute — it was a hit and I highly recommend for adults and kids alike. It was a private event, created by Watson Adventures, and it was sooooo much fun. The questions were quite difficult and we ran all around Grand Central trying to figure out each clue.

 

We met with our guide at a meeting spot, downloaded the information we needed on our phones, and took off. Since there were only 6 boys (and myself), we were one team, but I created prizes for everyone. It was highly competitive, everyone was very engaged, and we all had so much fun.

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Upper Sweetside

One of my favorite people I follow on Instagram is a baker — Upper Sweetside — who happens to be a mother from my kids’ preschool. Everything she bakes is fun, creative, and delicious. She not only cares about the look of the cake / cookie / treat, but also the taste. My type of dessert! Pretty and delicious. She recently posted Taylor Swift cookies, so I purchased several, to accompany us to see the Taylor Swift movie.

 

I couldn’t decide which one to get, so I ordered a mixture of them all.

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Currently Loving October 2023

There is a lot of sadness and heartache in the world right now — it is all so hard to hear and read. So here is what I am currently loving right now.

 

1. Pumpkin Banana Pudding

 

I know it sounds weird — but it might have been the most amazing and delicious thing I have ever eaten. HIGHLY recommend. It tasted like pumpkin cheesecake and was so rich and decadent, and I finished the whole thing (over the period of a couple of days).

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Chicago Marathon 2023 Recap

I know not all of you are runners, so this post might not be that interesting to you, but just for my own records, wanted to put it out there to the universe. Also — if you ever want to run a marathon — you should. I love it so much — it is a journey and a process — bot the training and the race itself. This past Sunday, not only did my son turn 14 (!!!) but I ran my 21st marathon at my favorite marathon, the Chicago Marathon. It was a great day — perfectly chilly weather and a happy outcome.

 

As always, I left on Saturday morning for Chicago, and went straight to the expo to pick up my bib. I hate expos — they are so nerve wracking and stressful, and I much prefer to not discuss my race with strangers…I was in and out as fast as I could be, and asked someone to take this photo. I always get a little sad when I am at expos alone — it is usually something you share with others, but alas, I traveled to the race alone and on this rare weekend, my friends that I normally stay with, weren’t there.

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Great Gift

The other day I co-hosted a small group of friends for a class that taught us to arrange flowers — (which by the way, I HIGHLY recommend — super fun), and one of the guests gave us the most genius present — a wine cooler sleeve! I have not even heard of it but am so in love with it that I am now going to give it as a present for wherever I go!

 

Before I share photos of the wine sleeve, here are some of the photos of the flower class. Look at the blush selection of colors of the flowers. LOVE.

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Currently Loving September 2023

Here is what I am loving this month! And as always, please email / text / call / message me with everything and anything you love — I truly love hearing the little snippets of joy that you enjoy, too!

 

1. Manet x Degas Exhibition at The Met

 

One of the beauties of NYC is the access to all the museums. As I walk by the Met every single day to get to my daughter’s school, I became a member, and love popping in just for a quick look. On Thursday, on a whim, I stopped by the newly opened “Manet x Degas” — there was no line (I went an hour before closing) and IT WAS AMAZING. I loved every single thing about the exhibition and learned so much! I had no idea that Manet and Degas were friends and the similarities and differences between the two. I stayed for an hour, and will go back to soak it all in again. I highly recommend. And great to go when no line!

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Volunteer with NYC Parks

This past weekend was the most rainy and depressing weekend in NYC in a long time. There was not a minute of sunshine and it absolutely poured rain for 99.9 percent of the time. That said, we had committed to volunteer with NYC Parks doing a park cleanup on 114th Street at Thomas Jefferson Park and we did not want to cancel just because it was raining. Despite the bad weather, the four of us had a great afternoon and loved giving back to the parks. I hope to do this more often — they need all the help that they can get.

 

It poured the entire time. We planted 200 plus bulbs that will produce purple flowers in the early Spring.

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Long Island City

This past weekend, we were in the city with no plans on Saturday night. Although I love nothing more than a night in, we decided to go on a field trip to Long Island City, where I had not been in years. And HOLY COW — it is SOOOOOOOOOOO different and a city in itself (hence the name). It was super easy to get to in the car (just over the 59th street bridge) and fun to explore a new part of our backyard. I can’t wait to go back there and eat at different restaurants, see the sights, and experience a different part of our eclectic city.

 

Trip over the bridge with the iconic sign “Silver Cup”

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The Retrievals – Podcast

It has been a good long while since I have listened to a series on a podcast — 2014(!!!) with Serial.  So when a friend told me that I had to listen to The Retrievals and I finally found a big chunk of time (urgent care waiting to be seen after a stray cat bit me), I started. And once you start, you cannot stop.

 

SO GOOD.

 

The series is composed of 5 episodes produced from Serial Production and The New York Times. It is the story of dozens of women who went to Yale Fertility Center for their egg retrievals (egg freezing or IVF), and endured incredible pain, as a result of their nurse swapping their pain medicine with saline water to feed her own drug addiction. It is an incredible series with all sides looked at and examined.

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Things to do this Sept / Oct

I know school just started, but man, how is it already mid month??? Here is a list of things I want to do in the next couple of weeks!

 

1. Visit Picasso in Fontainebleu at the MoMa

 

I love going to museums — especially when it is just for one exhibit and then leave. I am excited for this exhibit which comes at the start of October.

 

2. See Manet / Degas at the Met

 

A friend saw this in Paris this past summer and said it was one of the best exhibits she has seen. I can’t wait to go — end of this month!

 

3. Eat at the Golden Steamer

 

I have heard great things about this chinese bakery, and it just opened up another location, so will definitely be checking it out! Steamed buns! Moon cakes!

 

4. Watch Jaja’s African Hair Braiding on Broadway

 

I love everything that Manhattan Theatre Club puts on, and this is looks great. I hope to go during the time it is on Broadway!

 

5. Read a book

 

This list looks great — I really, really need to get back on track and start reading more! I want to — I just need to focus more!

 

6. Make something at the Brooklyn Craft Company

 

There is a HUGE list of different types of classes, and I cannot wait to try one out!

 

7. Relax at the World Spa

 

This place looks unbelievable. I want to go STAT.

 

8. Watch Taylor Swift Eras Tour Movie

 

I mean, who is NOT excited for this?????

___

What do you want to do in the next couple of months? Do share!

Anika Yael Natori, aka, The Josie Girl

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Currently Loving August 2023

I realize that August is practically over, but wanted to squeeze in with some of the things I love right now!

 

1. Taylor Swift Maroon

 

can NOT stop. This is one of my absolute favorite songs right now. Must listen to. Taylor did not perform this at her concert, but because I have been on a deep Taylor Swift dive, I am listening and loving them all.

 

2.  Nike

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