Category Archives: Hmmmm . . .

Anything interesting I feel like writting about.

Photo a Day 2016

Once again, I am attempting to complete a photo a day challenge. After my successful challenge in 2013, I am ready to try again for 2016.

This time I am using Instagram and Facebook to post the photos.  I find that the idea of a Photo a Day is a little different for some people. Some people think it means to post any old photo that you have taken in the past (I feel like these people are just looking for likes). Other people (like me) believe that the point it to take a new photo each day with the prompt in mind.

I will see how long I can keep it going this time around. I am looking forward to a shiny new photo book of these new pictures, though.

coffee understands

I feel like all I do is drink coffee.  I have my first cup at 8 am and my last cup around 3 pm.  Every now and then I add in a cup or 2 of decaf to make things interesting, but I drink 2x more coffee than water in a day.

My Favorite Shops – Man Edition

I don't have as many favorite shops to buy J presents at, but I do have a few.  These are shops that I have previously purchased from or I have gotten wish list items from J from.  Once again, I have not been compensated in any way for this post

iusb_760x100.12449850_kv24I love the scents of their shaving products, and J loves their beard oil.  I got him a sample kit of the beard oil for Christmas last year and he uses it daily.  He says that it makes the skin less itchy, and I can see that it makes the hair softer and more manageable.  They also have other bath/beauty products for men and women in their shop (I am eyeing the lip tints).

115e_TG_logoIf you have a geek that you know and love, you have probably already found this shop.  It is the best conglomeration of shirts, toys, food, and accessories that any geek or nerd would like.  There is something for everyone here!  I love the giant microbes, no surprise since I am a microbiologist, and J likes the cube warfare gear.  I have also bought my brother many a t-shirt from here for various holidays.



bellroyJ is very picky about his wallet.  It has to have the right number of slots for cards, not be too thick, and fit in his pocket just right.  He found this site and sent it to me as his wish list for future gift ideas.  They have very high quality wallets, a little pricey, in different sizes and configurations.

My Favorite Shops – Mommy Edition

To continue with my series, here are a few of my favorite shops for myself.  Since my weight (and dress size) fluctuates on a yearly basis, I do not spend much on clothes that will probably not last more than a season.  I am a sucker for well made and unique jewelry and home decor.  Once again, I was not compensated in any way for this post.

iusb_760x100.13851676_abunIf you are ever looking for an excellent quality jewelry gift in gold, silver, or rose gold I recommend this shop.  I have one of their simple silver inital necklaces that I wear almost every day.  J got it for me to commemorate the birth of L, and I am looking forward to getting an R to add to it to commemorate her birth.  When it comes to jewelry, I am a fan of simple and understated pieces with good quality.  On my wish-list are the stitch bar earrings, stackable rings, and the tiny hammered rose gold hoops… hint, hint J…

logo_transIf you haven't heard about Toms shoes yet, I am going to think that you have been living under a rock.  They are an amazingly comfortable pair of shoes that donates a pair to children in need in third world countries every time you buy a pair; their motto is "One for One".  I wore the Toms canvas classics in black to work every day while I was pregnant.  They were comfortable and forgiving on my poor swollen feet.  I am also a fan of their ballet flats and L loved is tiny Toms we got him last year.  One thing to note, there is quite a variance in size between the different styles (I wear a 8.5 in classics, but a 9 in the jutti flats, and an 9.5 in the ballet flats) so check the review to see which way the sizes run, big or small, before ordering.

logoMy favorite thing about this shop is that the inventory is always changing.  My least favorite thing about this shop is that the inventory is always changing.  If you like to browse for great home furnishing ideas, this is the place to go.  Unfortunately, if you find something that you like, you need to jump on it because it will only be around for a short amount of time (sometimes sold out within minutes).  My favorite purchase from here is a rustic sunburst mirror that is currently residing above the fireplace.  I have received many compliments on on it, and getting a large mirror that I love for less that $100 is a major win to me!  I am currently considering a this garden stool to add to our living room.  It has an interesting texture…I just have to find a place to put it…

UntitledI am a sucker for Mommy jewelry.  I never thought I would be, but I just love having necklaces with my kids initials and/or birth stones on them.  This shop does not only make Mommy necklaces, but you can customize a charm necklace to have a variety of items on it for any purpose you could imagine.  I have not had a chance to purchase one of these for myself, but they have been on my wish list for almost 3 years now.

iusb_760x100.12458663_h9e6I love furniture made with reclaimed wood.  The history, texture, and color variation makes each piece unique and a statement.  Currently, I am living with 80% IKEA furniture in my house (durable and cheap cause kids destroy furniture), but as soon as my current coffee table dies (aka. gets so many scratches and dents that even J is embarrassed by it), I am going to be purchasing this beautiful replacement.  It is irresistible, right?

My Favorite Shops – Minion Edition

I love looking on ETSY for new clothes and toys for my kids, as I am sure that many parents do as well.  So, I wanted to share a few of my favorite shops that I have come across over the years.  I have not been comped or anything for this post, FYI, these are just my favorite shops to look at and purchase from.

logoBaby headbands!  Having a baby girl, now I realize why people put headbands on their little girls, they are just adorable.  LHS has knotted ones that are just my style, simple and classy.  I am a fan of the Julia collection, being a mom that avoids pink.  No giant bows or flowers in this house.  They also have little dresses, shorts, rompers, and so much more.  If you see something here that you like, buy it quick because they sell out fast!

logo (1)J first saw these moccasins on Shark Tank and made the mistake of telling me about them.  Of course I had to promptly go out and buy a pair!  We used them in my maternity pictures for R, and I can't wait for her little feet to get big enough to wear them.  It is so hard not to buy another pair every time they release new colors (I am drooling over the huckleberry ones) 


logo (2)These lightweight, bamboo wraps are a dream for any baby wearing parent.  The colors are classic and the quality is impeccable (and the price is affordable too).  They just restocked their shop, so I am having a hard time not buying one to match every outfit.  My favorite is the grey stripe, but I can't wait to see what colors are coming next!



il_570xN.610218431_gmq3Lanette made R's birth announcement and L's invites for his 3rd birthday.  I love her modern designs and she is great with custom orders!  She designs all kinds of paper goods for parties, not just invites and announcements.  You can get digital files for cupcake toppers, banners, water bottle labels and much more!

2013 Mash-up

I have to say, I am not a big fan of pop music in general.  This video, which I am late to discovering, it truly amazing though.  Every year this guy makes a mash-up of popular pop songs from the past year; it is called Pop Danthology.  I will be looking forward to see what he comes up with next year!


I am sure that you have heard in the news about 23andMe and the letter from the FDA.  If you have not heard about it, you have missed out on some great science news.  Basically, 23andMe is a company in Mountain View, CA that for $99 will analyze a sample of your genetic code for various ancestry and disease markers and give and interpretation of the results.  The interpretation tells you what genes for certain diseases you may carry, how rare that mutation is, and how important/reliable this result is.  Since the letter from the FDA, 23andMe is no longer offering an interpretation of the results of your tests for disease risk factors.  

Welcome to 23andMe.

At this time, we have suspended our health-related genetic tests to comply with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s directive to discontinue new consumer access during our regulatory review process.

We are continuing to provide you with both ancestry-related genetic tests and raw genetic data, without 23andMe’s interpretation.

If you are an existing customer please click the button below and then go to the health page for additional information, including information about refunds.

We remain firmly committed to fulfilling our long-term mission to help people everywhere have access to their own genetic data and have the ability to use that information to improve their lives.

Upon entering the site, please confirm you understand the new changes in our services.

-From the 23andMe website entrance portal

You can still get the ancestry information and your raw genetic data, but that is it for the moment.  Anyone with a basic background in bioinformatics can do a lot with even that much data on their own.  There are many open source sequence alignment options that you can use to compare your results and perform your own analysis with.

This whole sittuation makes me wonder if people were getting their reports back and taking drastic measures due to the results they were given.  Were people seeing that they have a 0.4% increased risk due to a BRCA1 mutation and running out and getting double mastectomies? Are people completely ignoring the current debate of genes vs. environment?  Are we so uneducated that we jump at the first hint of possible bad news and make drastic life changing decisions?  I would hope not.

I think that we all have a right to know our own genetic code, whether it comes with a nice printed interpretation or not.  The interpretation is convienient, but must be taken in perspective.  A genome sequence does not take into account the methylation of the DNA and how that affects gene expression.  Just beacuse you have a specific gene, does not mean that it is affecting you.  I think that people (and the FDA) need to calm down about this whole issue and let one get their genes sequenced and interpreted if they want to.  I also think that anyone purchasing such a service has the responsibility to read the manual, as it were, and learn a bit about the data they are recieving before they jump to any conclusions.

The lost art of Nap

I love a good nap.  Really, who doesn't love a good nap.  No, I don't believe you… you have never had a good nap if you don't like napping.  That one perfect nap is like a gateway drug.  You are forever searching for that same "high" of perfect nap from then on.  Some lucky individuals are good nappers (my husband) and some people have a difficult time even getting a mediocre nap (yours truly).  Now with a toddler running around, I find napping to be a luxury, right up there with caviar, massages, and houscleaning service.

I stumbled upon a very nice infographic about napping that I wanted to share with you (as amorphous as you are).  It had some neat data and pretty graphics, which are my 2 favorite things on the inter-webs. [via]

Napping Infographic

If you found that interesting, as I did, here is another one.  Did I ever mention that I love infographics?  I love infographics.  Two sites that I frequently read are Flowing Data and Daily Infographic.  They will drop a knowlegde bomb on your [cough].


FYI – No one paid me for this or any of my posts.  I just like to share cool things I find.  If I ever get enough fame to be perked for anything two things will happen: hell will freeze over, and I will let you know.  Pinkie-swear!

Ode to a Cookie

Ok, well, not really an ode.  My English lit skills have degraded far beyond the point where I could write a haiku, let alone a whole ode.

But seriously, is there anything better than a warm chocolate chip cookie?  I am at work, eating my lunch that I bought for a fundraiser, and in the bottom of my crumpled brown paper bag is a chocolate chip cookie.  Small and unassuming in its saran-wrap packaging.  I pop it in the microwave for 10 seconds (there is serious debate about the optimum time for cookie perfection) and I am transported to a land of Yummmmmmm.

It is amazing how something so simple can make a Pre-Friday (Thursday) so much better.


Melodramatic chocolate chip cookie

The Art of Napping

I really need to learn this art. Like now.

This morning I was talking to J about slacking off on blogging because I cannot think of anything energy-esque to write about (say it with me, burnt-out) and he mentioned an infographic about napping that he found yesterday.  I lurve infographics.  If I was not already married I would marry them and have little color-coordinated-appropriately-margined children with them.  I did some google and found a few different graphics about napping, but I wanted to share the most informative (even though it is not the prettiest) with you.


I hope that you find this as interesting as I did. Based on this, I should be napping at 1:30 pm (like my boss would ever let me) and J should nap closer to 3 pm. I think we have a new plan for the weekends!

Thank you to Daily Infographic for satisfying all of my infographic urges and making me a more knowledgeable person.