Explore 2019 #241: Homemade goldfish crackers

OMG Vi and I made homemade goldfish crackers and they're seriously the cutest thing ever!

Back story: Last month I did some work with America’s Test Kitchen Kids around their cooking/science/craft subscription boxes. I'm not working with them right now but we do have a subscription and when their cheese-themed box showed up, Vi was SO EXCITED. She immediately went through the recipes, crafts, and science projects in the box and I think we have played maybe 72 rounds of Go Cheese (think, Go Fish), through which I have totally leveled up my cheese knowledge! The crackers were such a fun project (Vi loved rolling out the dough and using the fish cutter) and they were devoured in a day!

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Explore 2019 #242: Piping bees

Currently hoping no one bumps into or knocks anything onto this bumblebee cake I just finished (it's precariously arranged in a rather full fridge). Piping is so humbling. I keep seeing the imperfections of the and Vi is like, "Mom, relax! It looks great!" Donating this cake for a school fundraiser tomorrow. Design inspiration via Wilton Cakes.

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Explore 2019 #240: Menstrual cups

Well, 😂😂😂 I imagine LaShawn Wiltz had beverages in mind with today's photo prompt, but I want to use this opportunity to issue a PSA about menstrual cups. Have you tried one? Years ago, I received a menstrual cup as conference swag and I was like, HELL NO. It felt foreign, messy, and complicated! I now realize that I was totally caught in the stigma cycle. Time to bust through.

Over the summer, a dear friend and I were commiserating about our periods and she RAVED about her menstrual cup. The more we talked, the more fired up I got. I immediately went home and bought a The Diva Cup to close the karmic circle of shunning the one I received years ago and OMG it is a GAME CHANGER. Here are 6 things I wanted to share about them: 1️⃣ Menstrual cups are not difficult or painful to use. I read the (brief) instructions and it's easy...literally insert and twist to create the seal. 2️⃣ I recommend wearing a liner at first in case you experience learning-curve leaking (or if you have a super heavy day in your cycle...day 2 is always a disaster for me!). Otherwise, no need! 3️⃣ It has been absolutely fascinating to see menstrual flow in its pristine form and I now have a totally new understanding about the actual flow of my cycle. 4️⃣ Using a cup will help you get more comfortable in dealing with your body...it's such a good thing! 5️⃣ I am beyond thrilled that I don't need to stockpile tampons anymore or worry about running out. 6️⃣ OMG REDUCTION IN WASTE FTW!

Seriously ladies, give menstrual cups a try. Now I want to start a foundation to distribute menstrual cups for free because I feel like they could move us towards menstrual equity. I wish I had opened my mind to them way earlier! If you have questions, please ask.

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Explore 2019 #237: Perspective

It's my birthday! This week was really hard (so hard that I reunited with my therapist...) so I couldn't be more grateful that my birthday is on a Saturday this year. I needed a day where I did not need to be a professional badass while dealing with feelings.

Today has been a mix of being loved and celebrated by my family and just living life... heading to the soccer field, fixing a broken phone, hunting for snacks and bathrooms, etc. It's been a solid reminder that everyday I'm lucky to have unconditional love on my side.

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Explore 2019 #236: The power of saying yes

I talk a lot about the power of saying NO but wow, sometimes it feels really good to say YES. This week has been really tough for me personally and the last 6 weeks have felt way too busy all around. For a few weeks Violet has been asking to make cupcakes and we literally have not had a free afternoon for it. But this week I was like, YES, LET'S DO THIS, and then when we went to the store to get some last minute items and she asked for Halloween candy I was like YES, WHATEVER YOU WANT, GIRL. And when she asked if we could experiment with sinking marshmallows in the center of the cupcakes I didn't overthink the baking science and was like YES, JAM THOSE MARSHMALLOWS IN.

The marshmallows completely melted and sunk the centers of the cupcakes but we leveled it out with chocolate buttercream (#winning) and then the girls had such fun decorating with sprinkles and Halloween candy (Vi claims the pumpkins taste better than the candy corns...agree or disagree?). Anyway, it felt really, really great to say YES to this project, and to make things even happier, we delivered cupcakes to some friends + our amazing single mom neighbor, whose birthday is a day before her daughter's birthday...which means her birthday totally takes a back seat (#momlife). Seeing the surprise and delight on this mom's face when we delivered the cupcakes really put life in perspective for me.

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