Whole 30 & Bullet Journaling 

After my last post, I ended up making dinner with my coconut amino garlic sauce instead of regular aminos, so I had some organic sap but that’s really just sugar. A rose by any other name, etc. Still haven’t officially started, but I’ve been rereading all the rules and I feel excited about this round in a way I haven’t before. I also feel sad because I’m not loving the way I look, but still hopeful that March will be a powerful month in my journey. I’ve already signed up for a Pilates class, am considering a few different yoga studios, and have been working out with videos at home. I don’t think I’ll food journal here because that’s sort of boring to read. I do want to show you some of my bullet journal pages that I set up though!  Am I “basic”?  A little, right?  Eh. It’s ok. I’m old enough to not give a – well, do you watch Real Housewives of Beverly Hills?  Consider me Erika Jayne. 


This is all colored in because I finished this round!  But, again, I think that I was technically compliant but not fully in the spirit. Excuse my nails. They need to be repainted. 


I look forward to coloring in my succulents. I set some intentions next to them for daily reminders. 


I ran out of room to write them all but it was a great reminder that even though my weight isn’t where I want it to be, my NSVs have been genuinely lifechanging. 


I actually have a ton of recipes in my journal. It’s great to flip through, get inspired, and buy what I need for a delicious and compliant dinner. 

I’ll probably check in with W30 talk once a week. I’d love to hear from you!  Do you do W30?  Do you keep a journal?  

Hey Whole 30: This is My Diary Now. Bonus: Currently!

I haven’t posted here forever but I’m about to swing into my 13th Whole 30 and was thinking I wanted a place to dump my thoughts and recipes.  I finished a W30 in January but the truth is I haven’t lost in quite some time and in fact I’ve gained.  I think that what has been happening is that, much like the political climate, I got complacent.  Bad habits (even good-bad habits) started to creep back in.  So for my lucky 13th W30 (on the 2 year anniversary of my 1st one!!) I am setting intentions, and ones that honestly I know to be important to the success.  I sort of wish I had journaled more at the start, although I am a huge Facebook Whole 30 poster (and admin of 2 groups).

Intentions for my 13th Whole 30:

  1. Follow the plate template.  This is very important.  3/4 plate veggies, 1/4 plate protein.  Make sure that you add a healthy fat and if you want fruit, have it with the meal.
  2. Drink a ton of water.
  3. Don’t zone out while eating.  If you don’t have a pal to eat with, bring a book.  Don’t work while eating or watch Vanderpump Rules or Real Housewives, even if schadenfreude is the most delicious taste of all.
  4. Avoid these compliant foods that you really overeat: potatoes, nuts, nut butter, clementines (I can easily eat 3 while standing in the kitchen just thinking about food or work or breathing).
  5. Portion size!  I think that I really eat too much.
  6. Exercise 3-4 times a week minimum, although if you do 21 day Fix videos everyday that’s even better!
  7. Try a new recipe every week.


I didn’t weigh myself, but I did take some measurements (which I won’t be sharing, although I will share the difference at the end, if there is one).

I wasn’t actually planning on starting until March 1 but so far today I’ve eaten compliant AND worked out so I guess we shall see.  I’m going to California twice in the next 4 months so I certainly want to look and feel my best for my vacations.  What I realize is that although there are foods that I miss when I’m W30 that I’m not willing to give up for life (mainly pho, ramen, and boba tea), I never actually FEEL better after having them.  Yes, they are delicious, but my self esteem and comfort take a dive which makes it feel not worth it.

Tuesday, February 21:

Breakfast: Leftover Whole 30 cookbook beef & sweet potato chili, slightly modified because I added butternut squash cubes as well (thanks, Costco!) and extra broth to ensure there was enough liquid.  I used chicken broth because I can never find compliant beef broth and I don’t make my own).  I used Chili 5000 Chili powder from Penzey’s and I really recommend that and will be reordering soon.  Penzey’s is THE BEST.  All my love for this company.  I also had an egg and some leftover veggies I sautéed in ghee that I made yesterday (brussel sprouts, green beans, snap peas, broccoli).  Stumptown cold brew with a bit of Califia unsweetened almond milk.

I haven’t eaten lunch or dinner yet but it will probably be more chili, maybe with a side salad.

Somehow after eating this substantial breakfast, which I ate in front of the tv but let that be my last meal there, I decided to work out!  Well, if the emotion comes, one should jump on that!  So I did the first workout in Beachbody 21 Day Fix: Total Body Cardio.  Oy.  I was nauseous but I did it!  And now I’m sitting here, full from breakfast, sore from working out, I just took a digestive enzyme, fish oil, and probiotic (look out, Lisa Rinna, you’re not the only momma with a fist full of vitamins) and I’m ready to devote myself to myself.

Am I sad that after 2 years I’m not at my goal weight and in fact further from it that I have been in the past?  Yup.  But  I’m no quitter.  I know that all the steps I have taken on this journey have made me a healthier and better me.  In fact I was just joking around with my friend that I suddenly own and wear multiple pairs of sneakers.  Who am I even???

OK, you made it this far.  You deserve some pictures AND an update on what I’ve been doing lately!

Currently:

What I’m Reading: 

I just completed Maria Semple’s Today Will Be Different, which was awesome but not as good as her previous book.  I live for her mocking (accurate) send up of Seattle-ites and their inability to cross a street and absurd love for the Seahawks.  I also read Hillbilly Elegy which was amazing and so pertinent to how we have ended up in the political place that we are at now.  But as for what I am currently reading this week, I am reading both Food Freedom Forever by Melissa Hartwig (a Whole 30 compendium) and The Nix by Nathan Hill.  From the Amazon description: An Amazon Best Book of September 2016:  “The Nix is a surprising novel that you didn’t know you were waiting for until you start reading. At its center is Samuel Andresen-Anderson, a failed writer and increasingly apathetic college professor, who gets a second chance at literary fame from the most unlikely source—the mother who abandoned him as a child. The American public is up in arms about a rather absurd crime that Samuel’s mother committed against an obnoxious politician. While Sam is shocked and surprised to learn the whereabouts of his estranged mother, he also realizes it’s the chance of a lifetime to tap into the zeitgeist with some choice tidbits about her, if he can write it before media A.D.D. sets in. But in order to write the book that will revive him, Samuel is forced to dig into her life, and he discovers a completely different version of the woman he thought he knew; it turns out he’s not the only one who’s life is carved out of traumatic events.”  I’m about 100 pages in (it’s a huge book) and I’m really enjoying it so far.

unnamed.jpg

What I’m Watching:

Most of my shows are on hiatus (looking at you The Good Life and Crazy Ex Girlfriend) but Jane The Virgin is still kicking around, as are Superstore and Speechless.  The last thing I crazy binged was season 1 of The Magicians on Netflix (like a dirty Harry Potter).  As a good friend said, it’s a real testament to how binge-able this is considering it’s so corny (true).  I did immediately buy the books and read the first one but they are not for me so I gifted the one I read to a coworker and I sent the other two back to Amazon.  Quentin is not a protagonist I’m interested in following because I find him unbearable.  Did you know that all episodes of The Golden Girls are on Hulu now?  I’m watching that too.

unnamed-1.jpg
What I’m Listening To:

I’m going to give some Podcast shout outs this time instead of musical ones.  Actually, I’ll do both.  Regina Spektor’s newest album is awesome and I’m seeing her in April and I am PSYCHED.  Some Podcasts that have been bringing me joy are Chris Gethard’s Beautiful Anonymous (think call in shows from the 90s like “Dear Delilah” hosted by a genuine, empathetic sweet soul); Watch What Crappens, which is recaps of Bravo shows and is so funny I often find myself laughing while walking around with headphones; Emotionally Broken Psychos which analyzes the behavior of reality tv show casts; and Gilmore Guys which has moved on to Bunheads recaps!

What I’m Wearing:

Like I mentioned up top, I have suddenly taken up wearing sneakers.  Insanity.  I wanted the Stan Smith Adidas but they were a little pricy so I got similar ones from DSW and I have been loving them.  They are black on the back instead of green, but that matches my soul better anyway.

unnamed-3.jpg

unnamed-2.jpg

I also treated myself to a Nena & Co huipil bag (Sonia size) and I am in love.  I got it from Poshmark for much less than new but they are all one of a kind.  I’ll be checking in to look at the weekly drops on the site.

unnamed-4.jpg

 

I also decided to act like an It Girl and try out some Glossier lipgloss.  It arrived today and I can see why it has such a cult girl following!  If you use my code, you can receive 20% off.  I did this off someone’s code and got 2 lip glosses for $28 (generation g in Crush and Jam) BUT it arrived today and I got a cool makeup bag, stickers, AND free balm too!  That’s a crazy good deal.  Get that here (full disclosure, I get $10 off my next purchase but it’s totally win win): http://bff.glossier.com/e5ItF

It’s the exact My Lips But Better thing I’m always looking for for that I’m always looking for.  This is Crush on me.

unnamed-5.jpgunnamed-6.jpg

unnamed-7.jpgunnamed-8.jpg

 

What I’m Looking Forward To:

So much!!!  I’m excited for California (San Francisco, LA, San Diego) and to spend my 39th birthday in Disneyland!  We’re also going to Wizarding World of Harry Potter!  I’m looking forward to my 15th wedding anniversary and spring (which fall on the same day) and spending my summer in NY and meeting so many new babies.

What I’m Eating:

Still mainly Whole 30, but as we know I’m planning on going all in.

What I Learned This Week:

I learned that the more involved in my community I get, the more in control I feel about the current political climate.  I learned that I can be a leader of organization and the model for my son about how people should be treated.  I learned that self care is as necessary as fighting the good fight and that I have the advantage of being a long time activist and that it is my duty to help others who need guidance.

unnamed-10.jpg

 

Thanks for reading!  I hope you have all been doing well and I look forward to posting more regularly!  Here’s a picture of me in a dress I like (from Old Navy).  Let’s consider it a very flattering “before”.

unnamed-9.jpg

Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life

OK, hopefully you already read Winter and Spring, so let’s move on to Summer and Fall!  Spoilers ahead! Don’t say you weren’t warned.

Summer

We open at the Stars Hollow municipal pool.  I was definitely excited for this because the way tv seasons work, we never saw summer with the Gilmore girls.  There is a crazy amount of fat shaming that goes on in this scene, which I could definitely do without.  Fat jokes are bottom barrel, if you ask me, and I am not impressed by this particular runner.  Rory is not back, everyone!  She’s not back!  I know it’s “good to have Rory back”, says one random background voice (does Rory even have peers in SH besides Lane?) but she is most definitely not back, ok?

April is eating dinner at Luke and Lorelei’s, dressed like a college hippy, and talking about marching for marijuana.  It’s a very funny scene and I love April’s delivery on all her lines. I never hated April as much as I hated Anna, and I am thrilled to say that she does not appear through these episodes.  Eventually, this leads to April having a panic attack in Rory’s room, spurred by the fact that Rory is back (“I’m not back”) but they have some sisterly time as Rory calms April down while secretly freaking out inside because she, like April, feels really lost and unsure about her own future.

Cut to Rory on the steps outside calling Logan who is not her boyfriend and is in fact actually Odette’s future husband.  Rory wants to move her London booty call trip up to the next day because she isn’t doing anything and is bored and Logan says that she can come this week but stay in a hotel because his fiancee lives with him now and Rory seems offended by this?  Come on, girl.  You know what this is.  Now you’re “a geisha” but in Winter it was “what happens in Vegas”?  This is just like their first go around and I’m expecting the Twickham house and Founder’s Day punch to factor into this.

Rory is so rude to everyone welcoming her home, another 30 year old the world has chewed up and spit out and sent back to their parent’s homes.  And again, I get it, she’s feeling stressed out and unhappy, but appreciate all the love and attention, Rory.  Yeesh.  Speaking of the 30-something gang, there’s another Bunhead alum in there, Bailey De Young who played Ginny.  I loved Bunheads.  Bring THAT back too, Netflix!  Taylor tells the town that he’s putting together a musical about Stars Hollow amid a loud HVAC system that keeps turning on and off (did I mention this was another Daniel episode?) allowing Lorelei to scream something inappropriate about Taylor when the sound suddenly stops.

Taylor says that The Stars Hollow Gazette is shutting down since there is no editor, so you can already see that Rory is going to be filling that spot.  She is super rude to the 30 something gang one more time before the scene ends, saying that she doesn’t want to talk to them (“Excuse me everybody… most everybody” aka NOT YOU 30 SOMETHING GANG).  Bootsy looks totally different.  Is that really Bootsy?

Lorelei and Rory are now fat shaming people at the pool while talking in fake Southern accents and bossing children around that they have taught to call them “M’lady” and “Khalessi”.  It’s… unsettling at best and totally Daniel.  These scenes make it hard for me to root for my girls.  Especially when one of the kids looks longingly at children having fun in the sprinklers and wistfully sighs, “that looks like fun” while carrying things like a Gilmore sherpa.

Patty and Babette at a table, Miss Patty totally unrecognizable.  And then we hear Sutton Foster’s incomparable singing!  I know a lot of people feel this storyline is dumb and went on way too long (it is about 10 minutes) but I loved it.  I really did.  Sutton and Christian Borle, real-life exes and two bonafide Broadway stars, are fantastic.  Rory looks like a gorgeous hippy and Taylor says a woman is “hot” which is totally bizarre.  Claudia, the therapist, also has a great set of pipes on her!  I looked it up: her name is Kerry Butler and she is also a Broadway-trained actress.  Makes sense.

Michelle is back from his trip to New York and wants to go out with Lorelei for a drink and to talk, ostensibly about leaving the Dragonfly, which is what she has been fearing since Winter.  They go to the Secret Bar (I love a good payoff from an otherwise one-off line) and Zach and Lane are there too, playing background music.  Michelle tells Lorelei he needs more than their inn, although he would stay if she would expand, which she explains is impossible in the property they own.  It’s sad, and their friendship feels real and lived in.  There’s a funny moment when Taylor comes by and they all make the Secret Bar disappear, although it seemed like it could have used one more beat before “all clear” but that’s just nit picking.

Rory acts totally put out at the Stars Hollow Gazette but she isn’t getting paid and is there only because she wants to be so… I don’t know.  What’s your damage, Heather?  She also has decided that there will be no seasonal poem which begs the question of how often does this paper come out?  Surely not only 4 times a year.

Luke is working at the Dragonfly instead of his own diner.  Again, we have seen this story before but it’s ok.  Lorelei and Rory need to deliver all the Gazettes because wacky hijinks.  There’s a silly but fun montage set to “These Boots are Made for Walking” as they deliver papers all around town until Lorelei enlists kids, breaking all suspension of disbelief and child labor laws in one fell swoop.  Rory seems angry and put upon in this whole scene which again begs to ask why she’s even doing this.  Maybe she needs to borrow her grandmother’s book because she does not seem to be finding joy in this endeavor.  She’s walking around, throwing papers into people’s cars, looking stunning in a sundress, and yelling at Doyle on the phone.  How big is this postcard town anyway?  In fairness though, I wouldn’t want to hang out with the 30 something gang either.

The next day the ladies are tired, but Lorelei is KILLING in a pencil skirt and button down tank top combo.  Slay, queen.  Rory calls Emily to check on her and she’s sleeping at noon, like a dock worker!  That’s the second dock worker joke of this reboot (the other was a Les Mis reference in the opening dialogue).  Rory is really thrown by her grandmother’s fogginess and erratic behavior and snipes at Lorelei about not being there for Emily, but I agree with Lorelei here that Emily was in the wrong for quitting therapy.

Time for the musical!  Wow, are we excited about this!  I sure am, Taylor.  This part reminds me of Waiting for Guffman, one of my all-time favorite movies!  It opens with a bizarre and violent scene, which causes Lorelei to exclaim, “What the f–” and it’s so dramatic and jarring and then suddenly the lights flicker and Sutton and Christian, named Violet and Carl here, are pilgrims and the commitment to these songs is a real highlight for me, but I understand many will feel that this should have been a much smaller part of the show.  Not me, though!  Like Luke told Lorelei 11 years ago, “I’m all in.”  The rest of the audience is too although Lorelei, truly being the only sane person in the room, finds the play to be horrific (which it is, even if it makes me laugh… I’m laughing at it, not with it).  “My god your balls are freezing” is SUCH a Daniel line.  They used to get Taylor to say some hilariously dirty things as well.  So the actors sing about their incestuous relationship, as well as how they will hope that 3/14 of their future children will live, and spin on stools and clap their hands.  Lorelei is taking so many notes that she needs to borrow pens and clipboards.  There is so much pandering to the audience in the play, it’s so hilarious.  Suddenly, there is a Hamilton-style rap that references the Broadway hit.  It’s tonally inconsistent but that is totally the joke and I was loving it.  Every time they flash to the audience, they are riveted.  “And poo-poo-poo-Putin”… then, related to nothing, the music is cheerful and the dancing is happy and then the cast is tap dancing (way better than Rory does) and then they’re in a kick line!  Then they all come back to sing Waterloo.  The crowd: pleased.  Lorelei: horrified.   But she stands and claps and fake smiles with the best of them.  Classic Gilmore.

At the advisory council, it’s all raves.  “It moves, it breathes…” Babette says something sort of anti-semitic to make sure the tone deafness spreads around.  When Lorelei dares to question the violent opening scene, Taylor claims it was blessed by his Mentor Edward Albee, author of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, but really he saw him once in a diner and never heard from him again.   Sophie, played by Carole King who sings the original Gilmore Girls theme song, offers Taylor one of her songs, her original piece “I Feel the Earth Move” but he tells her it’s not catchy in a very funny bit.  Lorelei is unanimously shut down and leaves the theater to be accosted by Violet, chain-smoking, who leaves while thanking Lorelei for all the doubt.  There’s a nice callback here to Lorelei having been in You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown, which she and Christopher had discussed in the episode in Season 1 where Rory meets her paternal grandparents.

DAR business at Emily’s house.  She is clearly not as into it as she used to be.  We hear that Berta is still cooking whatever and doing whatever but Emily seems ok with it all, which is kind of a relief from how uptight she always was.  Rory comes to visit Emily, and check on her, and is stunned to see that there’s a TV in the living room and hear that Emily has been eating on a tv tray watching movies and PBS on the living room TV.  When she expressed concern to Lorelei, Rory is informed that they will be going to the gravesite to see the new stone as Emily has sent them all back because they are incorrect and have been riddled with typos.

And then we are back at the Gazette and who should saunter in but Jess Mariano.  I’ve been really enjoying Milo on This is Us, so it was not a surprise to see how he’s aged, which is well.  Another issue of the Gazette has just come out, with the poem back on the front, so obviously they do publish more frequently than 4 times a year so I don’t really get the seasonal thing.  Liz and TJ are still in a cult, and I am so sad that we never get to see them.  I love Liz and TJ!  Rory drinks with Jess at her desk, as she had with her mother earlier in the episode, and I’m a little concerned by Rory’s daytime drinking habits.  Rory still needs to break up with Paul, poor Paul, and she’s snotty to Esther.  Do Esther and Charlie get paid?  She tells Jess that she can’t find her underwear and can’t afford anymore (I call major bull on that, Rory; you are not hurting for money).  Rory has a bit of a breakdown talking to Jess, expressing how much of a failure she feels and how everyone can smell it on her.  Jess tells her to write a book about her and her mother and she seems interested as he leaves.  Maybe this is the passion project she’s been waiting for.

Rory starts researching her mother’s history in Stars Hollow.  The Gazette really published an article about a teen mom arriving in town?  Ok.  Berta and her family are still all over the house, and Berta says that Emily is the kindest woman she has ever met.  Emily has a male friend there, an actor I recognize from Twin Peaks and who was at Richard’s funeral.  Lorelei is appropriately thrown by this man, Jack, being there on the stone unveiling day.  Kelly Bishop is teeny tiny.  Lorelei calls Rory, who is running late, to express her shock at Emily and Jack which becomes a fight with Emily about it as well.

At the cemetery, the stone is still not right, but Lorelei seems very understanding about Emily’s need to get it right.  Rory tells Lorelei, while they are alone, about the book she is working on and Lorelei gets mad. She says that Rory doesn’t have permission to tell her story and I can actually see both sides here.  Lorelei can be a very private person, but it’s Rory’s story too and this is something she feels passionately about.  It’s a compelling story, Lorelei!  God knows I’ve been watching and re-watching it for 15 years!  Lorelei gets like she gets when she’s mad, throwing shade and calling Rory “kid”.  Lorelei has made mistakes, and is aware of that, and doesn’t want them to be printed for the entire world to see.  She’s not always as confident as she seems.  But I understand what Lorelei is saying too, that for 32 years she has given everything she has to Rory, and Rory doesn’t get to have her life story as well.  It’s a hard scene.

Already upset, Lorelei shows up to the diner and has a fight with Luke over his not wanting her to make coffee, perceived grumpiness, and the secrets they have been keeping from each other (his looking at properties, her going to therapy alone).  They go at it until everyone in the diner is so uncomfortable that they leave.  In this fight, Luke makes it clear that Emily wasn’t wrong in saying that Lorelei has dictated the way everything has gone in their relationship.  He let her call all the shots the whole time because he was so scared that he wouldn’t be able to offer her enough.  These are traits well established in the original series so it feels right here.

Rory is telling Lane about the fight with her mom and she keeps calling Logan, instinctually.  No, girl.  He’s not your boyfriend.  You don’t get to call him or plan trips with him or any of the things that you have been doing.  You have no claim to this relationship.  Lane offers Rory some Lipitor which is funny and bizarre.  Logan and Rory do talk and she ends it, saying they can’t even breakup because they are nothing.

And then Sutton is singing an amazing song that sounds tailor-made for Lorelei about how “the map of my life should be clear and precise” but it’s not and that she is “not unbreakable” and is in fact “breaking right now”.  It even has a line about “me and a dog”.  It’s so beautifully sung and Lauren Graham has always killed crying scenes and it’s pretty flawless as the spotlight moves from Sutton to Lauren.  Lorelei seems to be gutted by the line of “it’s never or now” even as the rest of the audience declares the song a bore.  Lorelei looks amazing in this scene as well, in another great pencil skirt and a statement purse, as she tells Luke that she needs to go away for awhile to “do Wild“, the book not the movie, and explore the Pacific Crest Trail alone because, like the song said, it’s never or now.  And that is how Summer ends.

Fall

What are the final four words?  In another 90 minutes, we will know how Amy intended to end this series 10 years ago, before she left the show in someone else’s hands.  This is an Amy episode.  It opens with Lorelei in California, getting ready for her hike.  It’s very reminiscent of Wild, the movie, with the packing of the pack.  This is another storyline which people feel took up too much of the revival, but I think it’s a necessary act.

Lots of cameos in California.  There’s Stacey Oristano from Bunheads that Lorelei befriends at the campsite, and Jason Ritter who played Lauren Graham’s boyfriend on Parenthood as a park ranger.

OK.  Rory is getting some weird signals.  It says “Get Ready” on her computer and then Kirk’s pig runs by with a sandwich board with another message about an impending rumpus.  Rory seems thrown.

Back at Luke’s diner, everyone is on wifi and Luke is totally out of it.  Jess comes by and is trying to talk to Luke who is totally distracted.  He finally gets him to sit down with him, after telling him that Liz and TJ have been kicked out of the cult for being too weird and having Luke totally not hear him.  Luke admits that he thinks Lorelei is leaving him and Jess can’t really dismiss him based on the facts of the situation.

Lorelei bonds with the other women on the trail, and she confides in them that she is there not because of drug addiction or family problems, but because “lately, I don’t know, things seems hazier… suddenly I feel like I’m standing still, like the whole world is moving and I am standing completely still.”  You wish she could have told Luke this, but I think it’s good she’s telling someone.

Oh, god; this scene.  OK, so neon signs are changing, men on unicycles are speaking in rhymes, crows are telling Rory to get ready and Esther, with a flashlight under her face says “in omnia paratus” before Colin, Finn, and Robert appear in gorilla masks and Steampunk outfits.  They walk menacingly around and around Rory talking about how pale and depressed she looks.  Then Logan is there too and they give Rory a costume to wear and they’re hooting and hollering in the streets and walking in a line and playing golf on a rooftop and watching Kirk’s movie and they have broken into Doose’s market and are literally throwing money around and I HATED THIS SOOOOOO MUCH FLAMES AROUND THE SIDES OF MY FACE.  Oh my god, I hated this.  I hated the Across the Universe music, how tonally inappropriate the entire thing was.  Then they’re running to a jazz club where? Are they still in Connecticut?  Is it still 2016? And everyone is dancing synchronized and Rory and Logan are having a romantic moment while Colin buys the whole club to make them stop playing Tango music and every time any of them speak it sounds so fake and I hate hate hate hate hate The Life and Death Brigade.  Logan offers Rory a house, his family’s house in Maine, where she can work on her book and be waited on hand and foot like the right proper mistress she is.  To her credit, Rory declines, but not until the following day.  In this moment, she takes the key and in the same breath asks if he’s really going to marry Odette.  “That’s the dynastic plan,” he replies.  Then they are all at a bed and breakfast, where nobody works or stays because they have “bought the place out” because that’s something that people do in this world.  What’s in this for Colin, Finn, and Robert?  We know what’s in it for Logan as Rory kisses him and tells him to show her his room.

Back to Lorelei and her pack.  She still hasn’t actually hiked because the first day it was bad hiking conditions.  She’s off to give it another shot but not until we go back to see how Rory is.  She’s looking wistfully out a window, asking a hedging Logan when he’s leaving, which is in a few hours.  She realizes how dumb this is, to have slept with him again, to have fallen back into this again, and she’s never looked better than she does when she gives him back the key because she knows where she’s going to write.  She goes to get ready for breakfast but by the time they’re all downstairs she has already called a car to come and get her and then she does a whole Wizard of Oz routine where she tells them all she loves them.  Again, they all speak so scripted and it seems so fake.  I hate them together.  I said what I said.  Finn tells Rory to “stay photogenic”, and leaves with a “how novel” just like he did oh so many years ago.  Rory tells Logan she has no regrets, but that”every ride has to end” and they kiss goodbye and it’s sort of sad but also a relationship that I can’t get behind.

For real then, back to Lorelei, and a cameo by Peter Krause as a different park ranger.  Peter played Lauren Graham’s brother on Parenthood and is her boyfriend in real life.  She can’t get her permit out of her bag and tries to charm him into letting her go anyway but it doesn’t work so she just… goes back to her room?  It’s so defeatist.  Dig your permit out of your bag, girl!  Then repack it!  Like you said, you came all the way from Connecticut to hike this trail so hike this freaking trail!  This rings false to me but whatever.  Lorelei gets in her car and goes to find some coffee but the place she finds is closed.  While walking around it, she sees a hill and walks up it to find herself in some pretty stunning nature.  She stands there thinking for a minute before pulling out her phone to call Emily and tell her a really moving story about Richard and her 13th birthday.  I cried each time I watched this scene because Lauren Graham is perfection and hits these emotional notes like no other.  She has been robbed of Emmy nominations.  This is such a good payoff from that terrible story she tells in Winter.  This is so necessary for closure between these two women.

And with that done, Lorelei leaves her pack with a FREE sign (she was always terrible with money) and she heads home.  She is wearing a different outfit, however, so it may not be the same day although she says that she showered.  Anyway, she comes in and tells Luke that she only wanted to go to figure things out and she did that but before she can tell him what her epiphany was Luke is begging her to not leave.  He tells her he knows all his flaws, but he loves her and has always loved her, and finally she says that she just wants to get married.  It’s a good rant.  It’s classic Luke and Lorelei.  She’s right, they’ve waited way too long, because they both wanted to be married.  He goes and gets the original ring and it’s very sweet.

Emily is in Nantucket with Berta and her whole family, looking relaxed and awesome.  Jack is there too, but he can’t stay and honestly it looks like Emily can’t get him out of there fast enough.  He was going to take her to the Whaling Museum, but Emily doesn’t really need any man to take her there, she can take herself.  She drinks and listens to music (“Some People”, but Emily DOES know she’s alive!  There are some solid music cues.) and checks out the brochure for the museum before heading over there herself.  Once there, she listens to the boring docent barely capable of keeping the children’s attention.  She seems fascinated by the museum, if not the talk.

Rory is heading to the Gilmore Manor, which is empty.  This is the place she will write and the whole way these scenes are shot, with Sam Philips’ La Las, is gorgeous and emotional.  I loved the flashbacks we get to the earlier scenes, as well as the dialogue.  Rory gazes upon the scene of so many Friday night dinners.  I heard Richard’s voice when I read, “Emily, I beg of you, cheese!” on the board in the kitchen.  And when Rory opens the office door and he’s there working, don’t tell me you didn’t cry!  Don’t you have a soul?  And it’s there, at Richard’s desk, sitting under a portrait of herself, that Rory takes out her MacBook and starts writing her story.

Michelle and Lorelei are interviewing people for Michelle’s job but he’s being rude to people, natch, because he doesn’t want anyone else working there which is very unfair since he’s the one leaving.  Lorelei needs to take a call so she leaves Michelle alone to torture people.

In the next scene, Lorelei is looking beyond fierce in skinny pants and a perfect pea coat and a wide brimmed hat.  She has stumbled into some real estate, an old age home run by nuns who are leaving because their last client has passed away.  Clearly, Lorelei is looking to add onto the inn and keep Michelle.  Katy Perry may be her competition, but Lorelei isn’t one to back down from a fight.

Rory has come to Luke and Lorelei’s to make up with her mom.  She offers her the first three chapters of her book The Gilmore Girls to read, promising that if her mother finds it too invasive she will just throw it out.  Lorelei is scared that Rory will hate her if that were really to happen.  They discuss the wedding, which will be on the first day of the Harvest Festival because I guess Stars Hollow has never shied away from letting Lorelei take over the town.

This scene!  LOVE!  Emily is at the DAR, vetting a candidate, and she is totally over it.  She gets up in the middle of the talk to get a macaroon and rolls her eyes a lot.  When the leader tells the applicant that they’ll be getting back to her, Emily screams “bullshit”, which she goes on to say a few more times too!  She lets the “trophy wife”, whom she calls honey and objectifies, know exactly how these things go and how they buy things and drink tea and how it’s all so pointless.  This scene is amazing, amazing, amazing.  In the end, she is told that she’s out of the DAR, and our Emily could not care less.  “This whole thing is dead to me anyhow; it died with Richard,” she says as her parting words because she is done with “artifice and bullshit” and it’s so, so, so good.

Luke and Lorelei are planning their wedding invites and Luke tells Lorelei that he’s friends with Keifer Sutherland.  Miss Celine is there being herself and it’s awesome! Rory makes an appointment and seems totally wigged by it.  On first watch, I thought it was to see Christopher, and that she was unnerved because of feelings that were coming up from writing the book, but in hindsight, I think it was a doctor’s appointment she went to first, and then, after finding out she was pregnant, she went to see Christopher to figure out what role, if any, Logan should play.  See, she definitely got pregnant in that stupid Life and Death Brigade scene.  She tells Christopher she’s “5 by 5” which is a Buffy reference that means she’s all good, she is heard and understood, and is also a bit of a cannon callback as Amy has said she used to marathon Buffy while writing Gilmore.  So Rory is offered money by Christopher; again, financial struggles are not Rory’s struggles.  She tells her dad about the book and asks him how he felt about Lorelei raising Rory alone.  He says that she did things on her own terms all the way, it was in the cards, she was a force of nature, etc.  On first watch, I thought Rory was getting material, maybe, and that her whole demeanor seemed off.  On subsequent watches, understanding that she knows she’s pregnant in this scene, it makes more sense.  Rory is Lorelei all over again, like Logan is Christopher all over again.  Both men have joined their family dynasties and are incredibly wealthy but disconnected from the women they loved.

Lorelei stops at Emily’s house and finds out that Emily is selling her house.  It isn’t home to her anymore, and she doesn’t want to stay somewhere where she is forever Mrs. Richard Gilmore.  She’s moving to Nantucket, to live in The SandCastle, not the Vagina House (I love it when Emily works blue) and she’s going to live out the next chapter of her life there.  She drinks her daytime sherry and then Lorelei and Emily reenact the first episode of Gilmore Girls (“You need money”, “I’ll get the checkbook”) except EMILY IS SAYING ALL OF RICHARD’S LINES and it’s so good.  But Lorelei actually wants to use the money they left Luke to franchise.  Emily agrees, with conditions, by making Lorelei agree to spend 3 weeks a year in Nantucket.  Lorelei toasts “to the circle of life” (girl, you have no idea…) and they drink fancy champagne as Lorelei notices that Emily had the portrait of Richard redone at normal scale.

Rory is in Doose’s market getting wedding things when she runs into Dean who has definitely aged the best and is so handsome.  Dean is married, with three sons and a girl on the way.  Clara is living in Berlin and experiencing her first love, which makes Rory and Dean exchange cutely awkward looks.  Rory tells him about the book and asks if he can be included in it and says he was a great boyfriend and taught her what safe felt like.  It’s a nice moment.  They have a cute corn starch conversation as well and it’s all fan service and I don’t care- serve me, serve me.  Rory does say that her life is changing, which I now realize has to do more with the baby than the book.

And then- Sookie!  She has filled the kitchen with 100 cakes and her voice sounds totally different but I’m so glad Melissa McCarthy showed up!  Lorelei and Sookie have a good rhythm and it’s a pleasure to see them playing off each other again.  There’s a lot of emotion since Sookie has pretty much abandoned the Dragonfly for 2 years and Michelle calls her a bitch (!!!!) but takes it back when she tells him she brought him fat free granola.

Emily and Berta’s family are all in Nantucket and Emily seems happier than ever.  She has this gorgeous house on the water and is putting on sneakers and going to the Whaling Museum where she is the docent!  And she’s so awesome at it!  She’s scaring the children and parents and Emily loves scaring people!  She looks so satisfied giving them all a moment to compose themselves! Hooray for this storyline!

Luke is looking handsome in a suit and Jess is hanging out at their house.  There’s some wacky hijinks with Lorelei and Rory being there as well.  Kirk has decorated for the wedding and is scared he ruined everything which as we will see soon is far from the truth.  Lorelei gives Rory back the chapters, saying she’s not going to read it but that Rory should write it anyway and she’ll read it when it’s done.  Rory looks happy to have her mother’s blessing which comes with a Facebook-like note to drop the the.  “Just Gilmore Girls.  It’s cleaner.”  So is that what we watched?  Has this all been Rory’s story?  Rory tells Jess excitedly that she wrote 3 chapters.  I hope he publishes her book!  Before he leaves for Liz and TJ’s (I WANTED TO SEE THEM TOO), he looks longingly at Rory through the window as she administers a cool compress to Kirk’s head.

T-10 hours to the wedding and Luke and Lorelei are hanging out in the kitchen, eating pizza.  They’re nervous for the wedding, and wish that it was done.  They discuss that they’ve both planned flash mobs, hers to “Relax, Don’t Do It” and his to a Steely Dan song.  It’s cute banter, something I actually wish we had seen more of.  Maybe instead of seeing Colin and Finn?  Lorelei realizes it’s BINGO night and suddenly they are off to see the Reverend.

Gorgeous, glorious scenes while Sam Philips’ song “Reflecting Light”played just like it did when Luke and Lorelei waltzed at Liz and TJ’s wedding.  Kirk has decorated the Harvest Fest like Alice in Wonderland (which Lorelei tells him is perfect and it’s nice to see Kirk get a win) and it’s whimsical and gorgeous and hats are just on bushes and there are ballerinas and it’s totally impossibly untrue but I kind of don’t care.  It fully plays like a dream sequence.  There’s Luke and Lorelei dancing!  There’s Lorelei and Rory dancing!

Oh!  And then there’s Emily in Nantucket, kissing Richard’s picture goodnight, tucking in her new family, and walking to the water with a glass of wine and a lantern.  Shouldn’t she be in Connecticut?  The wedding is tomorrow.  How far are these places?

And Luke and Lorelei are married and kissing!  Lane and Michelle are there- where’s Sookie?  Is she eating dirt again?  Lorelei stands by the gazebo as flower petals fall on her.

OK, here we go.  We’re on the gazebo where we started, with just the girls.  They are reflecting on the wedding and Lorelei says it “feels right”.  It was a journey to get to where she is today and she’s happy to be there.  Lorelei asks when Rory will get married and Rory seems more and more uncomfortable throughout the conversation.  Paul dumps her via text and it barely even registers, although she expresses some remorse for treating him badly.  She is practically coming out of her skin, here, looking so upset.  Lorelei notices and asks her what’s going on and Rory says she’s trying to remember it all, every detail.  And then the final four words.  “Mom?” “Yeah?” “I’m Pregnant.”

Cut to the theme!

The story ends with Rory, pregnant at 32.  She has no job and no partner.  The story started with Lorelei at 32.  At 16, she was pregnant with no job and no partner.  Just like Lorelei said to Emily in Winter, full freaking circle.

Maybe I’ll do another with my thoughts on the final 4 words but I just wrote a novel on Gilmore Girls so I think I’m done tonight.  Please share your thoughts!!!

The Gilmore Girls are Back in Town

I have never loved a show like I love Gilmore Girls.  The protagonists are flawed, for sure, but something about it feels like chicken soup and a bubble bath to me.  The characters are complex, the clothes are fantastic, and the dialogue is quick and fun.  Emily and Lorelei have such a complicated relationship and you can relate to them and their perspective so much.  As I sit here watching A Year in the Life for the third time this weekend, I thought I would write down some thoughts.  Obviously, spoilers ahead.  Get out now if you haven’t watched it all.

Winter

Immediately, I had the biggest smile on my face.  I love the meta talk between Rory and Lorelei, I love the pink coat (I went the the basement and found my old pink  peacoat which is not nearly as cute as hers and threw it back into my own winter rotation).  I was so happy to see Stars Hollow in winter, all decorated, and see the gorgeous lights while the town troubadour played by the gazebo.  It genuinely felt like coming home again.  I love that they kept Lorelei in boot cut pants too because no one has ever looked better in that silhouette.  Seeing Amy Sherman-Palladino’s name flash on the screen was the cherry at the top of the joy sundae that the opening shots brought me.

All the notes were being hit: Luke in flannel, the girls eating garbage, Luke getting angry over nothing… I thought the Paul storyline was sort of funny, but also kind of sad.  I felt bad for him, especially when we saw that Rory was cheating on him.  Rory is probably the character that I most struggle with.  She has so many opportunities and endless potential, and I get the story that is being told, particularly in these 4 episodes, that she is very much her mother’s daughter, but while Lorelei is immature and in some ways got stunted at 16, she is a hustler.  Lorelei doesn’t shy away from taking risks and putting in hard work, but it feels like Rory rests too much on her entitlement.  Paul is part of this.  A sweet and dedicated and kind boy whom she can’t even remember exists?  Is the point to reinforce how selfish and oblivious she is?  Or just that no one will ever register for her like Logan?  Either way, for me it makes it tough to root for Rory.  I did like the tap dancing.  That’s the kind of quirk I like from my Gilmore girls.

I like that way that Richard’s death has far reaching effects on everyone.  Edward Herman’s presence was very missed for sure.  The funeral scene was devastating.  Luke’s wifi password was a fun storyline, as was the Kirk’s ooo-ber service.  Again, these runners are the things that make Gilmore Girls the show that I love so much.  The same comment goes for the sewer storyline.  That’s so Taylor.  The revolving chef storyline was silly, although I understand it was showing that Sookie was missed.  I adore the lion dress that Lorelei was wearing in that Roy Choi scene.  All of the clothes on Lorelei and Rory are so, so , so good.  The Jeep being at Gypsy’s was a nice callback, and a great way to get Kirk to Friday night dinner.  Luke and Emily- so much hugging!  That was sweet but alarming each time.  I thought the Berta storyline (that’s Gypsy!!) was possibly offensive in that it seemed that she was taking advantage of Emily, but also the relationship was good for Emily, helped her smudge that bottom line and realize who she was without Richard.  So, I don’t know what my final thoughts are on that but I adore that camel pea coat on Rory so I will just focus on that instead.

Again, the funeral flashback was so heartbreaking.  The giant painting was too (with Emily saying that she was a screw up).  The music cues throughout were spot on and I love the Tom Waits song that plays here.  “And they all pretend they’re Orphans/ And their memory’s like a train/ You can see it getting smaller as it pulls away/ And the things you can’t remember/ Tell the things you can’t forget that/ History puts a saint in every dream.”  All the small touches like the picture from the re-marriage celebration and the Chuck Berry record, Digger at the funeral, Rory following Emily around… all perfection.  Oh, and Emily’s little smile when Lorelei says she’s staying at the funeral.  But then.  Ugh.  That story that Lorelei tells.  Horrible.  And the fight they have.  Gutting.  And again, I can fully see both women’s sides.  Everything they all say is valid and true.  Emily’s dressing down to Lorelei is SPOT ON, but you can also see how it would really hurt Lorelei, and then be the catalyst for so much that happens after.  Lorelei realizes that so much of her and Luke’s lives have been predicated by her choices.  It’s absolutely bizarre that they haven’t discussed children in 9 years.  I love the confirmation that Michelle is gay and has a husband, but there is a troubling gay subplot at the town meeting that is totally tacky and true to the vibe of the original show, but it’s 2016 now and it seems tone deaf.

Paris!  Oh how I love Paris!  The Buffy line had me laughing out loud.  Paris’ intense energy is one of my favorite things about Gilmore Girls.  This job is perfect for her.  I am so bummed about her and Doyle, though.  Nice meta touch that he’s a screenwriter now, as he is genuinely a pretty famous screenwriter.  Paris rocks some power heels throughout the episodes and I am loving it.  Her clothes look so expensive, which is a perfect note.

Naomi stealing food is the exact type of thing that rubs me wrong.  It’s that total privileged entitlement that Gilmore does so often.  Again, I understand that Naomi is supposed to be nightmare, but this particular behavior I think we are supposed to find charming and I don’t.  And then there’s Logan.  This type of behavior from Rory is not even surprising anymore, and I think that this is really the crux of the story, after watching through fully.  Rory has always been taken care of, by Lorelei and the world, but she has never had to really take care of anything or anyone.  Logan wanted to marry her, and I feel like he still would, but Rory always keeps him at an arm’s length, just like Lorelei did with Luke.  I really do see the parallels and get the story, but I still always want Rory to make better more empowered choices, like not cheating on her boyfriend or sleeping with someone else’s fiancee.

Lorelei is in and out of London like someone who is not financially struggling, right?  That’s partly why those notes feel so forced.  Everyone keeps offering to help her out so she’s never really struggling, and I never believe that she is.  So she goes off to ride an ooo-ber with Kirk and Paris and Taylor has a great wifi rant, winning over Luke, and again, these are the right notes and they make me so happy, as does the random female troubadour and the OG (her brother) chasing her out of his town.  Fun little joke about whose team Rory would be on (she and I are Team Paris always).  It was nice to see that Lane and Zach have a house, and to see that the band is still together and the twins still exist (you never know if season 7 would have been just a fever dream).  Zach looks… older than Sebastian Bach and we will leave it at that.  Hep Alien sounds amazing, even if Paris could not look less impressed while they play.  Also, I want the sparkly decal top Lorelei wears in the phone call with Rory in this scene.

And then Emily is in jeans and a Candies top!  This was a scene that was in the trailer and it was funny there but in the actual episode it’s kind of sad.  You can see how much Lorelei is struggling to help Emily and how difficult it is with their complex history.  She gives her good advice about how she can’t really access joy right now and that it’s going to take time.  So when she calls to say how thankful she is, and Lorelei seems so happy and flattered, it’s an amazing moment.  Until you realize what she just agreed to.  And then Dolly plays!  Remember when Lorelei serenaded Luke in the highlight of season 7 with Dolly?  Nice subtle callback.  Dolly Parton and Gilmore Girls are 2 of my favorite things.  And that’s Winter!  Wasn’t it so good?

Spring

Spring begins quietly at the therapist’s office.  When I saw Daniel’s name on the screen, I admit I groaned a bit.  He has actually written some episodes that I love, “Bracebridge Dinner” anyone?  But he tends to do excessive quirk in a way that rings false to me.  After watching them all, I will say the most problematic bit of this is actually in Fall, an Amy episode.  So, the elder Gilmore girls are in family therapy and having a rough go of it.  They basically wait out the clock as we pan to a gorgeous outside scene.

And then we are back in Stars Hollow for a town event- an international food fair.  Kirk and Taylor are running it, which is perfect, and Kirk says “dick”, which is shocking and hilarious.  Again, the outfits on the girls, especially Rory, are envy inducing.  Mrs. Kim is there, bossing around a choir, and Mr. Kim is there?  What?  That’s some Daniel foolishness for sure.  Sandee of Sandee Says is played by Julia Golden Telles, who is Sasha on Bunheads, the show Amy made after Gilmore Girls (and the terrible Jezebel Jones) which starred Kelly Bishop (Emily Gilmore herself) and Sutton Foster, who appears here as Violet, the lead in Stars Hollow the Musical.  The basket bidding is a funny callback, and the girl resembles Melissa McCarthy enough to call back to Jackson’s proposal in “A-Tisket, A-Tasket” but it’s also kind of one of those selfish things that Lorelei does, bidding on it at all, although it’s shown there is no competition.

I got bizarrely happy to see Mitchum Huntzberger, since I always felt he was totally right on how he read Rory.  This is when we get the confirmation that Logan is cheating to be with Rory too, as well as that he’s actually engaged to Odette.  Scumbags, both of them.  Rory at least seems properly unnerved to see Mitchum and have him see her having a romantic lunch with Logan.  It’s telling as well that Logan has brought Rory to a family restaurant.  Was he hoping to be caught?  Does he just not care?  And then we are back at a town meeting.  Miss Patty is no longer on the stage with Taylor, is is because she got so thin?  She’s practically unrecognizable in the scene with Babette.  This is the off-putting scene about “gays” wanting to march but there aren’t enough in Stars Hollow.  Andrew wants a neighboring town to just lend them their gays and then Gypsy tries to get Taylor to out himself, even though it’s cannon that Gypsy was in love with Lorelei (in interviews since, see: Gilmore Guys).  So, the whole scene made me feel icky.  And then we are back to discussing the Dragonfly and the fact that it needs to modernize and grow (a storyline that plays out throughout the episodes).  And we also hear about the Secret Bar, another thread that pays off later.

Luke is always so scared that Lorelei wants more from their life and that she’s going to leave.  Again, this is a communication issue but it seems earned.  The real Paul Anka dream sequence is very funny and another wonderful callback.  And there is Rory, in a cute wrap dress playing house with Logan.  The next therapy session, with the Trombone Stan story is so funny, and the way it’s shot is so reminiscent to the great scene in Season 6, “Friday Night’s Alright for Fighting”, when they are all at Friday night dinner and it plays like a Mamet play.  This letter storyline, however, feels unfinished, and it bugs me.

Kirk’s second film isn’t nearly as funny as his first one.  It’s nice to see Maury again.  And then we’re back at the Inn, and there are the Gilmore Guys!  Another chef cameo; I find them distracting and silly, to be honest.  Lorelei’s outfit is great.  I don’t know how any of them wear these heels but they look fantastic.

Everyone is at Emily’s.  I actually am glad that Berta is there and Emily isn’t alone all the time.  Speaking of Richard leaving Luke money, I would imagine that he also left Rory and Lorelei quite a bit.  So, again, I’m not quite buying that Rory is in any genuine financial struggle or that she can’t buy more underwear.  I was thrilled to see Paris and Rory back at Chilton with the Headmaster, and even happier to hear that she chipped in $100,000 to the improvement plan.  And are we supposed to feel badly that Rory is offered a job teaching if she gets her Masters?  Come on!  That’s an opportunity many would love.  He basically tells her she can teach anything and have a permanent and steady position. It’s funny but implausible that the therapist is driven to a cigarette break by Emily and Lorelei.  Emily’s derision of Luke and Lorelei’s relationship, that without a wedding their union is like a roommate situation, is offensive and Lorelei is right to walk out, or attempt to do so.

Paris freaking out over (not) Tristan was silly and seemed out of character.  32 year old Paris is too good for that.  She is successful and gorgeous and wearing amazing heels (again)!  It was funny to see Francie again.  She plays a very different character on Shameless so it was nice to see her with her red hair and snotty Poof-energy again.  But she is right that Paris “rules the world”.  Paris Geller forever and ever!  Paris has always been one of the most pro-sex characters on the show so this was in character (what she says about Doyle) but man, do I miss them together.  Just reunite, kids!  You were the best couple on the show!  I’m glad to see Rory offer to help them out with the kids since she’s crashing at their house.

Rory finally has her Conde Naste meeting (thanks, Mitchum) and is wearing another great dress in this scene.  I think they do a good job of showing that she is feeling totally unmoored in these episodes.  It’s completely rude of Emily to quit therapy without telling Claudia or Lorelei.  That’s old Emily right there.  “I don’t need to pay someone to not agree with me.”  Sigh.  But I like that it allows Lorelei to explore some of her own issues.  Emily and Luke looking at franchise locations is again old, terrible Emily.  It’s almost nice to see her acting like her old self, but it’s also overbearing and horrifying.  Luke and Lorelei are still lying to each other, did they learn nothing from the April situation?  But again, these are things that make Stars Hollow feel like Stars Hollow and these characters feel like old friends.

Now a cameo I loved: Jason Mantzoukas!  For Gilmore Guys fans, you know that Zouks is a huge fan of Gilmore from back in the day so he must have been so happy that this opportunity presented itself!  And Rory is off the book, moving on to a spec piece for GQ.  I loved that the tap dancing returned as well.  The girls look beyond perfect in New York and this is a super fun bit, featuring a nice cameo by Mae Whitman, who played Lauren Graham’s daughter on Parenthood, and I like the bit about Lorelei basically living a charmed existence.  Would Rory really sit on the ground in that fancy skirt?  Well, no matter, I think the more important take away is that she falls asleep.  Again, this is not a girl who really dedicates herself to her craft.  They are staying in the fanciest hotel in Manhattan that I have ever seen!  Rory has a one night stand, again to show that she is sort of flailing and searching for something.  It’s sort of an odd character beat and I guess is to have Sandee call her a loser later, and continue forcing Rory to feel trapped and foolish.  I guess narratively that tracks.  I like that Lorelei lets Rory know that her relationship with Logan is definitely worse than sleeping with the Wookie, and I guess she’s too old to get a full lecture like she did when she slept with Dean, but Rory is really not invested in the sanctity of marriage, is she?

Sasha!  I mean Sandee (see what I did there) takes Rory on a tour of the weird online site that has been courting her.  Rory comes so unprepared, again, expecting things to just be handed to her.  She can’t sell herself because she has nothing to sell.  She just thinks she deserves things for being her.  I agree with Sandee that it’s “a little weird” that Rory has come with no information about the site or her own talents.  Rory does not handle rejection well in this scene which is surprising, since she usually holds it together better. And then she throws out $900 worth of phones because what is money anyway?  And she’s moving back home!

OK… as I’m about to hit 3000 words, I’ll finish Summer and Fall later.  Did you love the reboot as much as I did?  What are your thoughts?

 

 

 

Washington State Fair

A picture post from the annual Washington State Fair (and a few other shots of life lately). 

I’m starting to decorate for fall and my favorite holiday: Halloween. 

I’ve been not fully whole 30, but cooking with fall produce. 



And I had a girl’s night where I made this craft: 

Vancouver and The Whole 30 

As you may know from my previous blog posts, I have been doing the Whole 30 on and off since May 2015. If you’re not sure what that means, check out my previous posts (click on my tag at the bottom) or google it. I’ll wait. Ok, now that you’re all caught up, I can continue.

I began my 8th full round on August 1 (I have previously completed 2 half rounds as well) but didn’t quite make it to the end. For July, I was in NY living it up, trying to make good choices but definitely eating more gluten and sugar than normal. By the end of the month, I felt terrible and was so ready to jump into this recent round with my whole heart.

Unfortunately, I also had a little overnight trip planned to Vancouver with my husband. Cut to yesterday, after hours in the car snacking on compliant prosciutto, plantain chips and a Larabar, we finally get to a restaurant (Edible Canada on Granville Island: recommended)  and I get something off-plan. I had a burger (with bread) and duck fat fries along with 3/4 of a beer flight (the IPA, I deemed, was having diminishing returns on the fun vs guilt scale). For dinner, I had pork ramen with an egg.  Now these meals are not TERRIBLE. Many of the ingredients are in fact compliant but I didn’t ask all the probing questions one should when on a round. The fries, for example, are ok as duck fat is allowed. The bacon jam on my burger, on the other hand, probably had sugar. Bread is gluten, so that’s out, but when it came, the bun looked so great that I decided to keep it and go full-test on gluten with the beer. It is important to note that these are also meals I have had before, in between rounds, without any major damage.  Not specifically from these places, but in general. Today, I had another burger (this one I ate  on only the bottom of the brioche bun) and then we grabbed bahn mi on the ride home.

I don’t feel well. My throat is a little itchy. I feel super bloated. My mouth feels oddly full of saliva. I have a headache. All of which is to say that people often ask me if it’s hard to say no to so many things, to be restricted in my food, and the answer is yes, of course it’s hard!  That’s why I had the non-compliant food on vacation! But the other answer is that it’s harder to feel like crap. The good thing is that I know that in a few days I’ll be better than ever. I know exactly what to do to make myself feel better and I will recommit fully because I’m home and it’s easy enough to do it when I’m in charge of my food and I love how great I feel when I eat compliant. But I’m also not necessarily upset to be here, watching Gilmore Girls and feeling a little poopy, because this little trip has given me more information about what my body wants and does not want. I already knew that dairy was not my friend, but now I know that gluten is not either. Each new round gives you more information about yourself and knowledge, as they say, is power. So even a slip up, if used as a step on your journey, can be a tool. That is how we learn.

Now, if you read all that, you deserve some pictures of my trip!  So without further ado, I present 30 hours in Vancouver:

This one is actually from Fairhaven Historical District, near Bellingham (on our way).  I just think it’s a good picture.

The Peace Arch

Border

Canada’s Macy’s 😉

On the SkyTrain

Granville Island

Vancouver Public Library

Gastown and the famous Steam Clock. That’s a statue of Gassy Jack.

This is a must see shop. The Regional Assembly of Text on Main Street is so much fun if you like paper and pens, which I do. You can even make a pin of your own for $2 (Canadian)!  My husband, a talented artist, drew us. I love it.

Great Pixie’s song, good taxidermy shop.

Cannibal Cafe on Commercial Drive


Museum of Anthropology on UBC campus
Have you been to Vancouver?  Where should I go next time I’m there?

Paper Dolls 

Today I was lying around, reading magazines, watching Gilmore Girls and feeling super bored (not due to GG, one of my all-time favorite shows, just in general). I looked at tons of lifestyle/ crafting blogs for some sort of inspiration for how to spend my time and I finally came upon a paper doll tutorial on Rookie Magazine. I pulled out my card stock, exacto blade, cutting mat and other  crafting supplies and got to work. 4 hours later, I have 9 adorable ladies to hang on my wall. 

I wanted a variety of body shapes. I ended up making 3 of each. 

Laying out my stuff. 

I should have taken a picture of all my end scraps. This got pretty messy! 

The 3 silhouettes. 

I also wanted a variety of skin tones. 

Naked ladies. 

This one is me. I look like Tina Belcher but I’m not mad about it. 


All the ladies, the ladies. 
What do you think?  Pretty cute, right?
Do you have any crafting websites you cull inspiration from? How do you combat boredom?

MmmmmmmmmmMeatloaf (Whole 30)

My husband, the Grand Wizard, and I concocted this the other day, melding other recipes. 

Here’s what you need: 

1 lb ground beef 

1 lb ground pork

4 slices low sodium bacon

1 small onion

1 large bell pepper (or 5 mini ones)

3 celery stalks 

4 carrots

1 tbsp coconut aminos 

2 tsp apple cider vinegar 

Olive oil 

Toasted onions (optional, but delicious) 

Salt, pepper, garlic powder, mustard powder (1 tsp each) 
Here’s what you do:

Sauté the onion, pepper, celery, carrots and bacon (all diced) in oil. 
When softened, combine with the meat and stir up. Add the aminos, vinegar, and spices. 

Put into meatloaf pan. 

Top with toasted onions. 

***If you have W30 approved tomato sauce, paint that on top with a silicone brush before the onions. 

Bake at 400 degrees for an hour. 

Eat.