Top Picks This Week

The Queen of Soul (& Friday Links)

I recall a quote President Obama once gave to the New Yorker about why he found Aretha Franklin’s voice so moving: “Nobody embodies more fully the connection between the African-American spiritual, the blues, R. & B., rock and roll—the way that hardship and sorrow were transformed into something full of beauty and vitality and hope.” She will be missed. Isn’t it wonderful that the sound of her music will live on yet? (And that 2016 article is really a wonderful tribute, if you haven’t read it.)

We are spending some of our last days of summer vacation in Lake Tahoe this week—our longest stay so far. Then it’s a busy last week before school starts. Have the kids in your home or neighborhood gone back to school yet? It seems earlier than when I was a kid.

Enjoy the weekend! Some links of note… 
Keep Reading >

In the Car: Podcasts for Kids

Hudson and Skyler each have a different podcast request on road trips: Hudson can’t get enough of Circle Round whereas the sillier Story Pirates is more Skyler’s jam.

She laughs out loud at exactly the same moment every time the title-song plays. Part of the latter involves taking a story a young listener has sent in and turning it into a song, and sometimes they’re really fun.

“‘In the Car,” a bonkers, deliciously-autotuned pop explosion about the wonders you behold from inside your ride by 5 year old Leah from Maryland,” is by far our family’s favorite so far. We’ve listened to it over and over like its a Carly Rae Jepsen song of the summer.

Our runner up song, just in case you’d like to keep listening, is “What’s a Wallaby?” with its caribbean beat. That whole episode (#25) probably held the most broad appeal for both kids, but the song starts about four minutes in.

Skip to 02:30 to hear the story the 5-year old sent in and the oh so catchy tune we can’t stop singing.

What do your kids like to listen to, um, in the car?

P.S. Roadtrip tips for Kids and previously recommended podcasts

How to choose a grocery store bouquet—and make it last

I love having fresh flowers in the house, but I rarely know what I’ll be buying until I get to the supermarket and see what’s available. The hope is something beautiful, in-season, well-sourced, and that will last a while.

We’re incredibly lucky to have a great grocery store—Nugget Markets—around the corner who makes that easy. They focus on carrying products from local producers whose practices they can fully get behind—and every time I work with them I’m impressed by the care they put into seeking the best local products. It really feels unique to the region.

That said, while their stores are currently only to be found in Sacramento Valley and in Marin County, their focus on the local producers and sustainable practices is something one can seek out anywhere. You just have to know what to ask.

I took a trip out to Petaluma last week to visit Neve Brothers‘ flower farm and see how my roses are being grown. Here’s a bit of what I learned there—including how to make roses last—and my favorite tips for arranging a grocery bouquet at home…

Keep Reading >

Travel Guides

Browse By Category