Coffee Talk | Currently Loving…Maine, Worklife Balance, A $12 Romper & An Upcoming Photography Workshop

currently loving...

Checking-in:

Hello!! Who else cannot believe it is the last day of July?! It always happens but after the 4th of July summer just speeds right on by. I am excited for August because we have some of our very favorite annual traditions during the next few weeks, including a visit to the Addison County Fair & Field Days…and a family trip to Maine! Here are some photos from our visit last year…

Work-Life vs. Blog Life

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Someone asked me how summer was going with work and the kids yesterday…and I think I was like “ummmmmmmmmm”.  My editing work is going fairly well because I have had some consistent childcare which is essential.

And everything else, well you can just look laptop screen and figure that one out…ha! I think it is easy to envision working “part-time” as an ideal setup (well I did anyway!!) but I often just feel pulled in all different direction and kind of feel like I am not doing anything very well.

I try to be as organized as I can but and my schedule has so many pluses but the reality is, it can feel really tricky, especially this time of the year. There are so many wonderful parts of this stage of parenting but it’s when work and family life overlap that things feel challenging and that happens more than I would like during the summer…

We have had many conversations about how to make things work the best for our family and it is really all hands on deck this time of year. While we do have a small amount of paid childcare, Lucas also takes the kids one afternoon a week which is something we figured out after reflecting on what worked and didn’t work last year. We also are lucky in the sense that my busy work season is the opposite of his, which helps everything feel more manageable.

I also have been saying NO to work lately which is really hard for me but I don’t want to say yes and not be able to give my all to someone or something. It is helpful to remind myself that just because I can’t do something right now, does not mean that chance or opportunity goes away forever…and sometimes the timing might be even better at another time. 

I am planning two articles for the newspaper after taking a little month summer hiatus, a new Mom Book Club at the library(with some amazing guest speakers!) in the fall and a lot of other ideas are stirring around in my head. It is hard not to get ahead of myself.

I get so excited about so many things but I also need to be realistic about the amount of time I actually have to work with. School and “regular life” will be here before we know it and so I am trying to really enjoy these last few weeks of summer without thinking about all the things I could be doing “better” or more.

Currently Listening To…

I have been listening to a lot of audiobooks this summer as I tend to do during my heavier computer editing seasons. I tend to listen to one Audible book a month and listen to the rest on Libby. I am planning on sharing some of my favorite audiobooks soon! I tend to listen to non-fiction for the most part but I will listen to fiction as long as it isn’t too complicated.

Our daily commute is about an hour total during the summer so podcasts have been a lifesaver! During our car rides we tend to listen to either But Why, Brains On or Smash Boom Best which are all kid-focused podcasts that I enjoy too.

When we have listened to all of those the kids also enjoy some of my podcast favorites…even though they aren’t for kids, a lot of them are totally kid-friendly and Sarah’s Book Shelves Live is one of them. It has also created some great book conversations between the three of us which I love.

Romper Weather…

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I am not someone who embraces new fashion trends quickly…or sometimes at all…BUT I had to run to Walmart last weekend to get some oil for our boat. It isn’t somewhere I tend to go a lot (and I do understand people have strong feelings about it so it’s totally cool if it isn’t your thing) but it was the only place that was open already. I ended up getting totally sidetracked by the rack of rompers and ended up leaving with two of them…and no boat oil because they were sold out, ha.

Walmart romper

I have already worn them a bunch of times and they are amazingly comfortable, breathable and great for this muggy weather we are experiencing. I am 5’4″ and a size 10 and I chose a size large…I think a medium would have been fine because they are stretchy but I am happy with it!

I convinced a few of my friends to try them and they love them as well…even my tall buddies who have had trouble with the length of this style in the past. I have zero affiliation with this but I thought I would share the link HERE if you are interested in checking it out.

Keeping Cool & Beach Reading

Last weekend was hot and humid and we spent all of Saturday out on the lake. It was wonderful and so refreshing. We started out at the Bouquet River and then headed over to Split Rock where the water is always extra chilly.

Are you a beach reader? It is one of my favorite things…I like to position my chair really close to the water so that the waves come up over my toes. I like to sit in the shade and our Sport-Brella is so easy to set up and provides awesome sun protection.

Currently Watching…

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Lucas and I just watched the Who Killed Garrett Phillips? documentary on HBO. It examines the 2011 murder of 12-year-old Garrett Phillips and the subsequent trial of Clarkson University soccer coach Oral “Nick” Hillary.  This case shares a grievous miscarriage of justice and sadly, this family still doesn’t have closure over the loss of their son. If you are looking for a conversation starter, this is it. I found it especially interesting as it all takes place just over the lake in New York so a lot of parts of it, especially the small-town politics, were all too relatable.

Currently Looking Foward To…

It doesn’t seem possible but fall will be here before we know it…This past week Kristy and I  have been going over our teaching plans for the rest of 2019 and the start of 2020! Teaching is one of my very favorite parts of my work and you can learn more about it HERE if you are interested…

Your Life Your Camera Workshop

Vermont introduction to photography workshopDo you have a DSLR camera you’d love to learn how to use better? Would you like to take your photos to the next level? The next run of our “Your Life Your Camera” workshop is scheduled for Saturday, November 9th from 12-4 in South Burlington. The cost is $150 and seating is limited. This workshop sells out every time- email kristy@kristydooleyphotography.com to reserve your seat today!

I hope you have a wonderful rest of your Wednesday. <3

 

The Escape Room by Megan Goldin | St. Martin’s Press | Blog Tour Book Review

book review of The Escape Room

The Escape Room by Megan Goldin

Book Summary:

“Welcome to the escape room. Your goal is simple. Get out alive.

In the lucrative world of finance, Vincent, Jules, Sylvie, and Sam are at the top of their game. They’ve mastered the art of the deal and celebrate their success in style―but a life of extreme luxury always comes at a cost.

Invited to participate in an escape room as a team-building exercise, the ferociously competitive co-workers crowd into the elevator of a high rise building, eager to prove themselves. But when the lights go off and the doors stay shut, it quickly becomes clear that this is no ordinary competition: they’re caught in a dangerous game of survival.

Trapped in the dark, the colleagues must put aside their bitter rivalries and work together to solve cryptic clues to break free. But as the game begins to reveal the team’s darkest secrets, they realize there’s a price to be paid for the terrible deeds they committed in their ruthless climb up the corporate ladder. As tempers fray, and the clues turn deadly, they must solve one final chilling puzzle: which one of them will kill in order to survive?”

Publication Date:

July 30th, 3019

Genre:

Suspense/Financial Thriller

My Rating:

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫⁣

My Review:

The Escape Room blog tour with St. Martin's Press

Another Thriller?!

I have been rough on this genre lately. I don’t think I can recall the last thriller that I read that I wasn’t somewhat disappointed with. I don’t know if I have just read too many or that many of them all blend together for me. ⁣⁣

St. Martin’s Press Blog Tour:

I am part of the St. Martin’s Press blog tour for The Escape Room by debut author Megan Goldin and so I wanted to read it with fresh eyes. I avoided reading a lot of other reviews beforehand and went into it without a lot of expectations either way. ⁣

My Reading Experience:

The Escape Room ended up being so enjoyable and fun to read!! It is mysterious but also filled with lots of character building and backstory, and is so different than anything I have read lately. I am a big fan of the show Billions(anyone else?!) and I love getting immersed in a world that is nothing like my day to day life. ⁣

Wallstreet Executives Go On A Team Building Retreat…

The Escape Room introduces us to the fast-paced world of Wall Street and four financial executives that are participating in a team-building retreat…escape room style. Things go very very wrong and we are taken back and forth from the present to the past to see how this all unraveled. ⁣This was the perfect summer escape reading. It kept me guessing but it was also a very fun reading ride. I definitely recommend this one for your end of summer reading list.

More about Megan Goldin…

Author Megan Goldin worked as a correspondent for Reuters and other media outlets where she covered war, peace, international terrorism and financial meltdowns in the Middle East and Asia. She is now based in Melbourne, Australia where she raises three sons and is a foster mum to Labrador puppies learning to be guide dogs. The Escape Room is her debut novel. 

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press for an advanced copy of this book and for inviting me along on this blog tour. All opinions are my own.

Limitless Mind by Jo Boaler | HarperCollins | Book Review

self help and personal growth

Limitless Mind by Jo Boaler

Book Summary:

“When we learn, we change what we believe and how we interact with the world. This changes who we are as people and what we can achieve.

Many people grow up being told they are ‘not a maths person’ or perhaps ‘not smart’. They come to believe their potential is limited.

Now, however, the latest science has revealed that our identities are constantly in flux; when we learn new things, we can change our identities, increase our potential and broaden our capacity to receive new information.

Drawing from the latest research, Professor Boaler followed thousands of school students, studied their learning practices and examined the most effective ways to transform pupils from low to high achievers. Throughout her study, Boaler has collaborated with Stanford University neuroscience experts, harnessing their expertise to reinforce her advanced understanding of learning and educational development.

In Limitless Mind, Boaler presents original groundbreaking research that proves that limiting beliefs really do hold us back from fulfilling our potential and that with a few careful life hacks we can transform our potential for good.”

Publication Date:

September 3rd, 2019

Genre:

Self-Help & Personal Growth

My Rating:

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

My Review:

Limitless Mind by Jo Boaler presents the idea that brains are not fixed from birth. Boaler shares research and studies that back up this message as well as how this can help us move from the fixed brain mindset to the brain growth mindset as learners.

Jo Boaler Ph.D.

Jo Boaler is a professor at Stanford and backs up her book with a plethora of research. She shares this information in an accessible manner that is readable for someone who is not an academic in her fields of work. She breaks down her message into accessible chapters that help us better understand this newer research.

When We Learn We Develop New Pathways In Our Brains…

The crux of her book is the idea that when we learn and push ourselves, we develop new pathways in our brains. We are not born with brains that are made to be good (or not) at certain subjects but we actually develop them, and this ability never stops. Our brains are constantly growing and this happens by stepping outside our comfort zones.

Pushing Through Struggles

We can do this by pushing ourselves in areas that are challenging and pushing through struggles and even mistakes. As we do this, the pathways in our brains are delicate but the more deeply we use these pathways the stronger they become. This message is the push for why struggle and mistakes are actually beneficial and allow our brains to continue to grow.

When we face challenging situations, rather than fear causing us to turn around, forge ahead, knowing these are the situations that help brain growth. Mistakes are a part of our everyday lives but many of us have grown up to think of mistakes as things are “bad” and something we should try and avoid.

Mistakes Are A Good Thing!

Boaler encourages mistakes and strongly feels that facing obstacles is how we can learn and thrive. When we struggle, our brains are more active and are working harder than when we are just in” autopilot” mode. When we are able to change our perspective on failure, we are able to live a more limitless life and continue on the path to improve and grow.

Life gives us endless moments where we can learn, grow and connect. Mistakes can help us be determined, proactive and move forward. Boaler shares that we are often unmotivated in areas where at one time someone or something gave us the idea that we couldn’t be successful. I found this message to be so motivating and inspiring.

Lifelong Learning & Growing

As someone who has spent much of my academic life feeling like I wasn’t “good” at certain subjects, this book is such a wonderful reminder that life long learning and growing can not only help us live fuller lives but the things we can master are, indeed, limitless.

Thank you to NetGalley, HarperCollins and Jo Boaler for an advanced copy to review. All opinions are my own.