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Feed My Brain - My Podcast Reviews

So, I listened and learned a little. Here are mini-reviews of the Podcasts I choose (spoiler alert: I enjoyed most of them):
  • Young House Love has a Podcast - A friendly podcast about homes and blogs and decorating, which I really enjoyed because John and Sherry are so delightful. I especially liked their concisely edited format, which made it easy to listen to. I'll likely subscribe to this one. 
  • Stuff You Missed in History Class - I listened to three scritped episodes, each about 30 minutes long, and each was interesting, informing and entertaining. The banter format between the two hosts annoyed people in the reviews, but I found it made it added a little charm. 
  • TED Radio Hour - These NPR-produced episodes pull together several TED talks around a subject into one well-produced 60-minute show. I listened to "The Meaning of Work" and it was thought-provoking and awesome. My one complaint is I wish they were a bit shorter, as one podcast doesn't fit my 40-minute commute. 
  • The Way I Heard It with Mike Rowe - The Dirty Jobs guy has the best voice ever and these episodes are less than 10 minutes of excellent storytelling. I'll probably subscribe to this one, too.  
  • Anna Faris is Unqualified - So ... exactly what you'd expect. You know how in movies Anna Faris gets that thoughtful/lost look and draws her words out ("reeealllllllllyyyyy? wwwwweeeeelllllllll"), that's not acting apparently. Entertaining but a just-slightly edited conversation is sometimes tough for me to stay focused.
  • Elise Gets Crafty - This format was also the listen-in-as-we-have-a-long-conversation (same as Anna's) which I'm not a huge fan of, but there are bits of inspiration and good advice in all the chit-chat. Elise means well, in her casual southern California accent, but I think I'd like it more if it was curated, like the Young House Love podcast. 


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Reusable Cotton Rounds

Maybe one of the things I'm digging so much about this plastic-free venture is getting to be a little creative and crafty. It's a fun challenge to figure out the better choices and make them.

When looking through the bathroom for easy swaps, I zeroed in on those little cotton pads I use to remove mascara and swipe on face toner.  Harvesting cotton, pressing it into little disks only for me to use it once and throw it away!? Plus, I'm spending 5€ for a plastic bag of them every few months? I can do better.

A little Pinteresting found a quick step-by-step to make these reusable pads. You can find better direction here, but basically I....

1 - traced circles in color flannel fabric using a water glass.
2 - Pinned three pieces together.
3 - Used a tight zig-zag stitch on my sewing machine to close up the edges.
4 - Last, I trimmed around the edges and repurposed a pickle jar to store them. 

Nothing to it.

I wash them with the kitchen rags on a hot water setting. And I've i…

Three New Plastic-Free Swaps

This week I've been thinking about the plastic-free swaps that are slowly getting added to our home. One thing I read a lot is the misconception that you need to "buy all this new stuff" to go plastic-free. And that's kinda silly. I mean, the idea of buying a lot to become sustainable is a littlecontradictory, right?

Chances are, you have a reusable water bottle and shopping bag rattling around the house, or you can probably ask a family member for one. And you've already created a pretty good swap.

While I DO like shopping, I'm a touch frugal. So, I'm swapping out plastic items that are ready for replacement with more renewable sources as they need to be replaced. Here are the latest three.

First up, replacing our plastic toothbrushes for bamboo. 
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My Tips for Visiting Paris

One of the absolute joys of being an expat living in Paris is that I can be a tourist without the jet lag and limited luggage space for new shoes. It's such a privilege! Having traveled to Paris several times, with and without kids, I have a few tips I can share to make your trip here enjoyable.

Wear good walking shoes. Paris is one of the most walkable cities. You can start at the Notre Dame, walk to the Louvre along the river, and up the Champs-Elyse in one day. Or over to the Palais Garnier. And just strolling through neighborhoods, picking up snacks, desserts, etc., is the reason to come here. It's beautiful. But it can also be hell if your shoes are too tight. I love my grey Nike sneakers or a pair of trusty Birkenstock sandals for when the weather is nice.

To blend in with the local gals, you'll want to pack a scarf. Or two. I love a scarf and always travel with one, because it's a blanket/pillow on a plane, and an extra layer while walking around -- adding just …