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Simple Joys: September 2017

Simple Joys: September 2017

Today's post is the first installment of a new series Simple Joys where I name off a few of my favorite things from the past month across the following categories: Food and Drink, Home Decor and Products, Entertainment, Health and Beauty, Clothing and Accessories, and - last but certainly not least - Priceless. I'd like to use these posts as a way to implement more gratitude into my days, weeks, months, and seasons. If you're feeling up for it, I'd love to hear about some of your favorite things from the passing month down in the comments. Ready to rock 'n roll? Let's hop to it!

Food and Drink

  • Central Market Butter Chicken with Fresh Broccoli - I usually don't veer towards the frozen dinner section at H-E-B but holy moly - this butter chicken is so darn good. When it's done microwaving, I like to toss in a handful of fresh broccoli, as well as a sprinkling of parsley and crushed black pepper. This gives it a nice crunch and some added nutritional value.
  • Zapp's Cajun Crawtator Potato Chips - These chips are so tasty. If you love crawfish seasoning (and a slight, spicy kick), give these a try!
  • Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Sauce - It's back, and I don't even care that it was released in early September. I love pumpkin-flavored food and drinks, so I simply couldn't resist requesting it with my iced coffee this month. Also, I think this year's sauce is a little more spicier (?) than last year's and I'm totally on-board with that.

Home Decor and Products

  • OXO Good Grips Cold Brew Coffee Maker - For the last month or so, I've been searching high and low for a well-rated cold brew coffee maker. By the time I found this puppy at my local Williams-Sonoma Outlet for 30% off, I hadn't really settled on a particular make or model just yet. I perused through several Amazon reviews and came to a conclusion of, "Why not? Let's try it out." The verdict? It's incredibly easy to use, and it makes wonderful cold brew coffee. All of the pieces store really nicely when they're not in use, and both the stainless steel mesh and paper filters keep the grounds from escaping during the filtering process. Plus, the nifty, glass carafe sort of makes me feel like a mad scientist when I prepare a brew (which is awesome). I'm in love with this thing, so I may write a complete blog post about it in the near future!


  • The Undoing of Saint Silvanus by Beth Moore - I read this 500-page novel in a little under three days, which is something that rarely happens. This book was absolutely fantastic. I've already written a book review (ADD LINK) about my thoughts on it but to sum it up, the writing was superb, the story kept me on the edge of my seat, and the overarching, religious message was beautiful and completely relatable.

Health and Beauty

  • Dr. Bronner's Pure-Castile Liquid Almond Soap - I've used Dr. Bronner's liquid soap for about a year now, and the almond scent is one of my favorites. It smells like cherries! I'm currently using it in the shower as my go-to body wash.
  • Goody Ouchless Scrunchies - I have fine and thick hair, which has always made securing pony tails and buns a serious (and painful) challenge. After dealing with what seemed like an endless amount of pulling and knots and headaches, I decided to revisit my old scrunchie friends for a bit of relief. They hold my hair well, and I don't have to fuss around with the typical annoyances that come along with regular hair ties. I love 'em!

Clothing and Accessories

  • Black, High-Top Chuck Taylor's - Ever since I bought these bad boys last spring, they've remained a top contender in my go-to shoe lineup. My feet are on the flatter side, so Converse sneakers suit me fairly well. They're super comfy, and I love the added ankle support and the breathability of the shoes. Also, I always think of The Sandlot when I put them on, so that's a plus.
  • Longchamp "Le Pliage" Large Tote Bag in Beige - Texas has been hotter than Hades for the last few weeks, which makes for very, um, sweaty walks to campus. As you may already know, backpacks tend to press any sweat that you have on your back onto your shirt, which leaves you with a giant, wet sweat mark. To mitigate some serious, unapologetic back sweat, I've opted to carry my trusty Longchamp bag instead of a backpack. It's lightweight, well-made, and very spacious. I'll likely start using my backpack again once it (eventually) cools off but until then, I'll continue to bring this bag to and from campus.


  • Visiting my sister, brother-in-law, and nephew in Houston - We feasted on delicious, healthy food, drank strong coffee, took a trip to Barnes and Noble, and watched a season and a half of Sherlock. It was loads of fun, and I'm so grateful that I was able to spend some quality time with them this month!
  • The widespread, overwhelming support for those effected by Hurricane Harvey - Watching a storm decimate your hometown can catalyze pain and emotion in places that you never really knew were a part of you to begin with. Amidst the trauma and destruction, it's been amazing to see so many kind, selfless, and generous folks all over the state and nation donate their time and resources to help Houstonians regain their footing. Even in tough times, it's important to remember this: "You can fill up our bayou but you will never rain on our parade."

What did you do during the month of September? Leave me a comment below - I'd love to know!

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