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3rd week //AUGUST

TO BAKE (May): You know something you’ve baked is a hit when you find ways to sneak bites as you are plating it. This recipe did not disappoint. I couldn’t help but make some tweaks: swap the vanilla for bourbon (you’re welcome), add in a crushed up heath bar and if you’re really into gilding the lily, spread half the batter into the pan, cover with a few spoonfuls of caramel sauce, then top with the remaining batter. Side note: how come brownies are basically fudgy chocolate cake, while blondies are thicker chocolate chip cookies?

TO BAKE (Caroline): Feeling something more fruity than chocolatey? The “season” for my favorite dessert, lemon bars, is coming to a close. But if you’re in denial like me, here is a great, classic recipe along with some fun twists like lavender and raspberry lemon bars. My secret is to only add about ½- ¾ about of the sugar in the filling to keep things nice and tart.

TO CLEANSE (May): In the spirit of summer travel, here’s a travel-sized cleanser that does double duty. Per Dr. Bronner, It’s all natural, gentle, and works for bathing, shaving, shampooing (have not tried this), and mouthwash (have definitely have not tried this). I stick to the face and body regions. When it runs out, I just refill it with the larger bottles you can get at Trader Joe’s.

TO CURL (Caroline): May did her go-to hair tool last week, so I thought I’d tell you about mine. My hair has yet to reach true mermaid length (you know, where it’s long enough to cover your boobs), but it’s getting pretty long. And when someone with long hair uses a standard size curling iron, wrapping the entire strand around the barrel results in Shirley Temple tight curls. In order to get looser, next-day curls, I found this extra-nice, extra-long-barrel curling iron. It’s big enough to eat your old curling iron.

TO READ (May): My husband and I are avid craigslist shoppers. Well, I am the one doing the shopping and he is the one doing the heavy lifting and negotiating. Favorite find as of late is this brand new Crate and Barrel couch that we are obsessed with. This handy blog post goes over the essentials but the key is to get creative with your searches (dinning and dining chair, west elm and westelm, etc.), be willing to pick up ASAP, and always try to offer less than what’s listed (Caroline is cringing at this one). Also be safe and don’t get murdered. Read on and let me know if you have any craigslist tips!

TO STYLE (Caroline): I’ve seen the new Mission Impossible twice and the last one about 30 times, and the thing that lingers after each time is not the crazy action but Isla’s fabulous trench coats. She looks so chic and, frankly, badass in them. I’m aware they’re usually a “springtime” staple, but I’ve rounded up some lovely, inexpensive, autumn appropriate options: from H&M, from Anthropologie, from ASOS, from Uniqlo

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