Thursday, November 15, 2018

{video} The questions kids ask



I look at my 14 month-old daughter, Waverly, and sometimes I am filled with such joy that I cry.  She stares at me curiously while I do this, tears rolling down my cheeks. What I find wonderful (among many other things!) about this lovely, sweet soul, is that she reaches her dimpled little hand out and instead of touching my tears, she touches my smile and smiles back at me with such chubby cheeks and tiny new teeth that she resembles a Disney chipmunk.

Waverly babbles at me all the time and I wonder what she will actually sound like when she discovers she can say words other than Mama! Dada! and Wow! Will she ask me who Emma is? (Wave often stares in the air giggling and I like to think that our dog, Emma, who died just before she was born is still with us.) Will she look up at the sky and ask how far it goes? Will she wonder how her hair grows long on her head but no where else on her body?  I look forward to laying in the grass, looking up at the sky and having these talks with Waverly. Little kids asking big questions is such an extraordinary thing. I think they have the universe in their souls.

Last week, I came across a New York Times opinion documentary "How Does Life Live" from Kelly O'Brien, a Toronto-based independent filmmaker and mother.  In this beautifully shot film, Kelly features her youngest daughter, Willow, and the curious questions that she asks. It's just beautiful. There is something so pure and joyful about a child's voice. Watch and feel your heart get a little bigger and a little happier.

Monday, November 12, 2018

The Happygirl Guide to November 2018

As I wrote this here in the studio, we are listening to holiday smooth jazz (Sirius Channel 784) and brewing MarketSpice Cinnamon Orange Tea. It's funny how when the leaves fall and the weather turns cool and grey, we have this primitive need to be cozy. While I'm more of a summer girl, I'm learning how to lean into things that have typically given me anxiety or made me feel sad. This month, I'm focusing on the things that make me feel happy rather than the fact that the days are short and I'll be in fleece for there next for months.



This weekend I discovered Lysa Terkeurst's book "It's Not Supposed to be This Way: Finding Unexpected Strength When Disappointments Leave You Shattered." Her book about timing and  unexpected situations has helped me manage some of my anxiety about the what-ifs that I tend to overthink. I'm learning to let go and believe that I'm exactly where I am supposed to be.

I hope wherever you are that you are safe, happy, that your November is cozy and that you have much to be thankful for.

Your Happygirl Fall Playlist on Spotify





Sunday. November 11th is Veteran's Day. Thank a veteran for his or her service by anonymously buying them a meal, listening to their stories of service or by donating your air miles to wounded or ill service members and/or family members undergoing treatment.


Tuesday, November 13th is World Kindness Day. While happy people tend to be kind people, today is a  good day to throw a little more kindness out into the world. Let another drive merge into traffic. Send cookies to the nurses who cared for your grandmother or to your admin who makes your office run smoothly. Drop off new blankets at your local pet shelter or send a letter to someone who made you feel happy.



Sunday. November 18th is National Apple Cider Day. While I love hot spiced apple cider, last year my friend Jeff, introduced me to Angry Orchard Hard Cider. Currently,  I am loving the Angry Orchard Green Apple Hard Cider. It pairs well with a warm vegetable pot pie. (It's also National Princess Day so throw on your crown and enjoy your cider.)

Photograph by Christopher Testani
Thanksgiving is Thursday, November 22nd. While the star of the Thanksgiving show is the turkey, my favorite part of the meal is the stuffing (or dressing, depending on where you live). I like a simple stuffing (no fruit, nuts or meat). This recipe from Bon App├ętit is my absolute favorite. It's especially good the next day.



The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade starts at 9am on Thanksgiving Day. My favorite spot for viewing, is along Central Park West. If you'd like a lux experience, try the 1 Hotel Central Park Thanksgiving Day Package which includes a brunch buffet at James with guaranteed views of the parade.


November 22nd begins the Candlelight Processional at Walt Disney World. Visit Epcot November 22-December 30 for the story of Christmas read by a celebrity narrator accompanied by a 50-piece orchestra.


Friday, November 23rd is Black Friday but this year, instead of heading to the malls and dealing with the frustration of parking and too many people all in the same place (I get overwhelmed and overheated carrying my coat in one hand while trying to wade through the throngs of people at the mall), take your favorite people somewhere outside. Maybe it's a walk on the beach (a whole different experience than in the summer!) or a drive to a farmstead with the best homemade pumpkin bread and apple cider. Wherever you go, you will happily be out of the way of shoppers looking for that deal. (If you do shop, shop at mall businesses. I love ETSY. It's online and I can support small businesses)


In high school, my grandparents bought me my first LL Bean duck boots and I wore them throughout college in the cold New Hampshire winters. Today, while I'm 3000 miles away from New England, I still love my Bean boots. With a shearling insert, your feet stay and absolutely dry on the coldest, wettest winter days. Paired with an oversized cream Irish wool sweater and well-loved jeans, you'll be channeling a happy New England girl. (This is the pair I have. At $210, they're expensive but their boots will last you a lifetime.)


The Rockefeller Center Christmas tree lighting ceremony is on Wednesday, November 28th from 7-9pm at Rockefeller Plaza between West 48th and West 51st Streets and Fifth and Sixth Avenues. If you've never been, it is an awe-inspiring site to behold.


One of my favorite memories is being a little kid curled up on the couch with my mom, my dog and a cup of hot chocolate watching "Santa Claus is Comin' to Town." I still look forward to this every year, now with my own baby daughter cuddled up next to me. This year, this animated special airs on ABC on Friday, November 23rd at 8pm ET.  If you live for  Christmas programming, check out this Christmas 2018 TV Schedule of every Christmas themed TV series, film and special (including all of those Hallmark movies) airing this holiday season.



Theatrical movies releasing this month

11/2 Boy Erased
11/2 The Nutcracker and the Four Realms
11/9  Outlaw King
11/9 The Girl in the Spider's Web
11/9 Dr. Seuss' The Grinch
11/9 Bohemian Rhapsody
11/16 Widows
11/16 Instant Family
11/16 A Private War
11/16 At Eternity's Gate
11/16 Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
11/21 Ralph Breaks the Internet
11/21 Creed II
11/21 Green Book
11/21 Robin Hood
11/12 The Front Runner
11/22 The Christmas Chronicles
11/29 Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle







Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Live Stream WDW Holiday Castle Lighting Event (11/8)


I don't know another place that is more magical than Walt Disney World at Christmastime, with all of the sparkling lights, themed Christmas trees around the resort, characters in holiday dress and holiday-themed music and food. While, we can't be there at Christmas this year, I'm excited to tune in tomorrow to watch the live stream of the moment they light up Cinderella Castle for a special "A Frozen Holiday Wish" featuring Elsa and Anna ("Frozen").

So, throw on your Mickey ears, sip a hot chocolate and tune into the the link below for the live stream starting on Thursday, November 8th at 6:10pm ET/3pm PT PT.


Happy Video: Chris Pratt Plays "Speak Out" with Ellen

I laughed so hard that I woke the baby up from her nap and she started laughing at me laughing.


 
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