Let me start by throwing a huge THANK YOU out into the ether for Idris Elba’s winning a SAG Award (Best Supporting Actor, or however they call it at the SAG) for his role as Commandant in Beasts of No Nation. The win alleviates my annoyance over seeing that Elba’s well-deserved recognition wasn’t reflected on the list of Oscar nominations.
So, I’m back to doing these “monthly favorites” posts. January’s list is mostly about food and cosmetic items, the latter of which came from my stash – things I already had, but wasn’t using. The only newly purchased item here is the Burt’s Bees lip crayon color.
As usual, though, I’ll start with entertainment. Here’s the one film and the one T.V. series that held our attention in January:
1). Amy (documentary)
If I had to choose one word for this documentary: Devastating. It started with a scene showing footage of Amy at 14 years of age singing “Happy Birthday” to her friend, a heart-breaking scene because we knew how her story ended. Here was this happy girl in possession of a brilliant talent, and then she was neglected, used, and preyed upon by vultures masquerading as people who loved her. Well, they loved her, alright. They loved her to death.
Here’s that scene of Amy as a kid singing “Happy Birthday” to her friend:
2). How to Get Away With Murder (T.V. series)
We started January binge-watching How to Get Away With Murder. Then we tried to watch the documentary series Making a Murderer, and on the heels of the former, it’s hard to watch the courtroom scenes without thinking of how Annalise would flatten her opposition in one sweeping, ire-charged oratory. “Steven Avery needs Annalise” became our Making a Murderer tag-line up until we stopped watching it. Seriously! One day with Annalise in court and Avery would walk.
Minus: Annalise is a fictional character. Plus: Viola Davis won a SAG Award for her performance as Annalise.
3). The Body Shop Shea Body Butter.
This is an old favorite that’s made a come-back as our night hand cream. I’ll always love its unique scent, and the rich body butter formula is wonderful on our dry hands.
4). Burt’s Bees lip crayon in Sedona Sands.
This was the only shade of Burt’s Bees lip crayons I didn’t have, and now it’s tied as my favorite (with Redwood Forest). I’ve been wearing Sedona Sands every day, since I’m feeling the nude/pink vibe right now. It’s hard for me to find a nude shade I really love, so I’m glad to have discovered a perfect one in my favorite lip color formula.
5). e.l.f. Flawless Finish foundation in Sand.
(Yes, that would be a half-eaten Larabar in the pic. I’d set it down on that paper towel and then decided to place the product next to it, for some reason.) Toward the end of last year, I experimented with a couple of high-end cruelty-free foundations and ended up putting the new one by Too Faced on my 2015 Favorites list. When I found this old bottle of e.l.f. foundation, I started using it again and realized that it actually looks better on me than the Too Faced one. So I stand corrected: The e.l.f. foundation IS my favorite foundation. Six bucks at Target! Amazing.
6). e.l.f. High-Definition powder in Soft Luminescence.
(And yes, that would be Nenette poking her nose into the pic!) e.l.f. came out with this new-ish version of their High-Definition powder, so I had to try it. Also six bucks! Why not? And I love it. Their original (Sheer) High-Definition powder always seemed a bit chalky on me, and I was loving the Shimmer version for a while, but this one in Soft Luminescence is like the perfect hybrid of the two. It’s fabulous.
7). e.l.f. Jumbo Eyeshadow stick in Rock Out.
I still love e.l.f.’s Smudge Pot cream eyeshadow in Cruisin’ Chic, but in January I dug through my e.l.f. collection, found the eyeshadow stick in Rock Out, and have been using it ever since. It’s slightly darker than Cruisin’ Chic, and the color is more like a deep olive, kind of a shimmery, moth-like greenish-brown. It blends as easily as the Smudge Pot formulas, too.
8). Vegan donuts and cookies.
I spent January eating way too much refined sugar, once again, and I had the zits to prove it. I just didn’t have the inner wherewithal to walk past Whole Food’s bakery without raiding the pastry case. They have vegan cookies, muffins, donuts, and scones. The donuts and the chocolate chip cookies are my favorites.
Okay, so January wasn’t my healthiest month ever. For dinners, I mostly alternated between big plates of nachos and heaps of pasta. Callaghan was on a salad kick, so I didn’t even share. Granted, vegan nachos and pasta the way I make it aren’t that unhealthy, but my diet was definitely lacking in veggies in January! The nachos on the plate you see here are made of blue corn tortilla chips, vegan cheese, salsa, and avocado. What can I say.
10). Cheerios with peanut butter.
Those of you who hang with me on Instagram and FaceBook might remember when I posted this pic. That was the day I’d forgotten to bring bread to go with my peanut butter at work, so I ran to the little shop on campus and came back with this little container of original Cheerios. The Cheerios/peanut butter combination was a little dry, but I enjoyed it. Now I bring Cheerios to work every day. Nutritionally speaking, they really aren’t that bad! They have a little sugar and one preservative, but I’m not going to argue with whole grain oats.
11). Celestial Seasonings Honey Vanilla Chamomile tea.
Here’s another old favorite! I love this deliciously mellow, sweet tea. We often have it as a dessert between dinner and bedtime. I think it’s the hint of licorice that makes it special.
That covers it for January. I hope the first month of the year brought simple, pleasurable little things into your lives, as well!