Friday Faves

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Hi friends! Happy Friday!

Before I head into the usual Friday Faves post, I wanted to send a huge hug and thank you to all of you for your wonderful messages, emails, texts, and comments about saying goodbye to sweet Caro. All of your lovely messages lifted us up during a hard week. I hope you know how much we appreciate you.

While I was heartbroken over everything, I feel a sense of peace this week that she’s pain-free and hanging out with Bella and my Tata Gene.

What do you have going on this weekend? It’s going to be a fun one over here. P has a birthday party, we’re headed to a fall festival, Liv’s friend is sleeping over, and we’re seeing Lion King. Whew! Packed as much fun as possible into the weekend. 🙂 I hope you have a great one ahead, too.

A bright spot in the week: seeing Michael Bublé for the second time! The last time I saw him in concert was 2019, and it was a DREAM to see him again on Tuesday night. Madre watched the kiddos and the Pilot and I headed up to Phoenix for dinner and the show. It was everything. He’s so incredibly talented, the musicians were incredible, and I LOVED his backup singers/dancers. They were up there killin’ it the entire time.

Naturally, I screamed my face off and croaked all day on Wednesday. It was worth it and 10/10 will do it again.

We had amazing seats! Also, there was a woman in the audience who has been to 52 of his shows! GOALS.

It’s time for the weekly Friday Faves party! This is where I share some of my favorite finds from the week and around the web. I always love to hear about your faves, too, so please shout out something you’re loving in the comments section below.

Friday Faves

Read, watch, listen:

What has made you laugh lately? For me, it’s been these chipmunk videos. I could watch them for hours.

Aging isn’t about lost youth.

Fashion + beauty:

Beautycounter’s fall sale is heeeeere and ends on Sunday. Enjoy 15-25% off sitewide (exclusions apply).

Some of my top picks:

Color intense lipstick. Brunch is my go-to for the perfect pinky-nude.

The best body polish. I use this before applying sunless tanner (and use this one or this one).

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What can I do about the cost of living crisis?

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It's easy to feel hopeless right now. From supporting others to taking action, here are five things you can do that really can make a difference

What can I do about the cost of living crisis?

The cost of living crisis is weighing heavily on many minds at the moment, and with the 24-hour news cycle that washes up story after story of frightening, stress-inducing, and draining news, it’s easy to fall into a pit of hopelessness and despair.

Whether it be anger, confusion, or any other emotion, those feelings are completely justified. We’re living through a time of uncertainty – with barely a pause to breathe after the last time of uncertainty. We don’t know when things might start to look up, and many of us are facing fears about what the future holds for ourselves, our loved ones, and the people around us.

On an individual level, there is no simple solution. No magic red button that we can press to make all those feelings go away. No one money-saving tip will solve all the problems. But there are micro-steps that we can take, to be there for our communities, and to take action in small yet meaningful ways. Here, we’re exploring five options.

1. Volunteer your time

Your first thought when it comes to volunteering your time in order to tackle the cost of living crisis, might be of food banks and community food poverty action groups. While those causes are very worthy, and volunteers and donations are very needed, volunteering comes in so many shapes and sizes, and there will be a role out there that will be suited to your particular skills and talents.

It might be volunteering to be a driver for social groups, befriending schemes for the elderly, environmental and conservation action groups, and there are also many digital volunteering options out there, too, like getting involved in digital communication and social media.

The effects of poverty run deeper than just the practicalities of getting by each day. Feelings of isolation and exclusion both play a prominent role in money problems. Volunteering your time is a way to support the wellbeing of those around you and, of course, yourself, too.

Find volunteering opportunities by visiting doit.life.

2. Support campaign groups

The truth is, not everyone has the time to get involved on the ground. Caring responsibilities, high-pressure work environments, health, and general overcommitment mean that you can sometimes feel stuck on the sidelines – but that isn’t necessarily a bad place to be.

There are many fantastic campaign groups out there, advocating for those in need, and putting pressure on those in power to take action. The power of social media means that we’re able to get involved with such campaigns even when we’re poor on time and resources. Reading articles, sharing resources, showing support for causes – it all adds up.

You can find both local and national campaign groups by searching online and on social media. Does a particular message of a group resonate with you? Pass the information on, and spread the word.

3. Find out what’s happening where you live

Do you know where the local food bank is? And are you aware of how and when they take donations – and the specific items the

Cranberry Apple Walnut Oatmeal

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Cranberry Apple Walnut Oatmeal is a tart and sweet body-warming dish perfect for filling those bellies before a busy day.

Apple Oatmeal

Cranberry Apple Oatmeal

Fall brings about such cozy feelings for me. Not only cozy sweatshirts and fires but cozy, warming things in my belly. The full-body warming feeling that comes from oatmeal is such morning comfort.

Being surrounded by local apple orchards, apple picking season brings about a bowl of fresh apples on the counter for weeks on end. There really isn’t a better snack and any that get soft I can easily toss into oatmeal or other dishes.

In August the orchards in our area put out a schedule of when each variety will be ready for picking. McIntosh’s are always first followed by Honeycrisp. Honeycrisp is our favorite for snacking! So good, fresh, crispy, and sweet.

For baking, I like Golden Delicious and Johnathan’s. Having local access to orchards here in Ohio it has been fun to discover varieties we hadn’t tried before like Ambrosia and Empire. I am curious about what you find in your areas?

This breakfast is so easy, warmed, and cooked in just one pot. Dicing a few apples – I even leave the peel on, warming them with oatmeal and spices fills your house with the scents of fall.

The aroma of spicy cinnamon and apples cooking always gets me in the mood for autumn. Oatmeal is everything I love about apple pie cooked into a hearty comforting breakfast.

Cranberry Apple Walnut Oatmeal

Apple Oatmeal with Cranberries and Walnuts

  • rolled oats
  • water
  • apples
  • chopped walnuts (pecans may be substituted)
  • dried cranberries
  • kosher salt
  • cinnamon
  • butter
  • light brown sugar, maple syrup or honey
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10 new things to try in October to benefit your wellbeing

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From connecting with nature to a film about a rock ‘n’ roll legend, and a podcast that’ll inspire you to make a change, try something new with our enriching suggestions

1. Page-turners

10 new things to try in October to benefit your wellbeing

You Need To Hear This: 365 Days Of Silly, Honest Advice You Need Right Now by Chronicle

It’s the pocket-sized agony aunt you never knew you needed, and this trusty book comes with 365 pieces of advice, affirmations, and jokes for your everyday conundrums. It’ll help to keep you grounded when anxiety strikes, or just provide you with a chuckle when you need it the most.

(Chronicle Books, £12.99)

2. Out and about

Make a pine cone bird feeder

There can be less food on the ground for birds to feed on during autumn, but, fortunately, September is the month that pine cones start to fall. Use this opportunity to connect with nature and make a pine cone bird feeder for your feathered friends. Head outdoors and select your pine cone, then simply spread peanut butter over the scales and dip or roll it in bird seed.

(Visit countryhillcottage.com for more inspiration)

10 new things to try in October to benefit your wellbeing

3. Act of kindness

Regift your Happiful magazine

Are you guilty of throwing away your magazines once you’ve finished reading them? If so, try passing on the kindness by dropping off a magazine to your nearest and dearest, or offer to donate it to a local salon or doctor’s surgery so they can make use of it in the waiting rooms. That way, your magazine can be enjoyed by others over and over again – and remember Happiful is recyclable!

4. Lend us your ears

‘The Climate Question’

How can oceans help us capture carbon? How does climate change affect our mental health? These are just a few of the questions discussed by BBC specialists in this informative podcast about climate change. If you’re worried about the planet, and have questions that you want answered, give this a listen.

(Available on all platforms)

5. Plugged-In

Tales of Eleanor

If you’re looking to break free from a heavy news cycle, meet the hedgehog who’s injecting Instagram with doses of positivity, one paw at a time. The wholesome, hand-drawn illustrations explore the daily struggles of a hedgehog, each with their own reminder to slow down and take a moment.

What is orthosomnia (and is it ruining your sleep)?

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Between smart watches tracking our sleeping patterns, apps to help us calm down before bed, alarms set via our home assistants, and dozens more modern tricks and tips we may be trying to help achieve that ‘better’ nights sleep, could we actually be causing ourselves more stress?

What is orthosomnia (and is it ruining your sleep)?

Technology has become an intrinsic part of our lives. Most of us would be hard-pressed to remember the last time we were more than a few feet away from our smartphone or smartwatch. We’ve got tech that can help predict depression, tech to help address alcohol dependency, endless apps to help us get organised, ease our stress and get a better night’s sleep. Tech even helps us stay on track and keep our motivation levels high when we’re struggling at work. Yet, could some forms of tech be causing us more stress than good?

Missing out on our much-needed rest and relaxation doesn’t just make us feel tired - our lack of sleep can be bad for our health. Along with feeling grumpy and not working to our full potential, not catching enough z’s leaves one in three of us feeling more stressed, on edge and less focused. According to the NHS, regular poor sleep puts us at risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and a shorter life expectancy.

Typically, we need eight hours of good-quality sleep to function properly. If you find yourself waking up tired or longing to catch a quick catnap, chances are, you aren’t getting enough sleep.

While it’s hard to deny the benefits of a good night’s sleep, do we really need the endless stream of sleep tech gadgets the market is trying to sell to us? Or could our obsession with sleep trackers be leading to a rise in insomnia and orthosomnia?

What is orthosomnia (and is it ruining your sleep)?

What is orthosomnia?

You may have heard of orthorexia - a rise in ‘clean eating’ that has led to a condition bearing all the hallmarks of a new type of eating disorder which sees individuals obsessed with the ‘purity’ of what they are eating. Orthosomnia is a new term being used to describe an unhealthy obsession doctors have started seeing, where people focus on getting a ‘healthy’ amount of sleep.

As Dr Abbot explains to Health, “We realised we had a number of patients coming in with a phenomenon that didn’t necessarily meet the classical description of insomnia, but that was still keeping them up at night. They seemed to have symptoms related to concerns about what their sleep-tracker devices were telling them, and whether they were getting good quality sleep or not. They were actually destroying their sleep by becoming so dependent upon these devices.”

In some cases, we are becoming mo

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