Just the thing every student (or anyone really) needs to keep track of everything that needs to be accomplished to be successful: the Spiral To Do Notebook I found from the fine folks at Russell and Hazel.

About the Spiral To Do Notebook from Russell and Hazel:

“Need to jot down a few notes on the go? Our new top spiral to-do notebook is here to help with just that. Features frosted front and back cover, number lines with check marks for each, room for the date and notes.”

Find the Spiral To Do Notebook from Russell and Hazel.

Visit Russell and Hazel online.

It’s back to school time. What that means isn’t clear right now. It could mean back to the kitchen table for some. Whatever it means for you or your student, the Bookworm Pencil Set I found from the fine folks at Ruff House Print Shop is the best way to start a new school year.

About the Bookworm Pencil Set from Ruff House Print Shop:

“An assorted set of 8 themed No. 2 graphite cedar pencils. Packaged in a beautiful, hand die cut gift box. The pencils are hand hot foil stamped on our vintage foil stamping press. Designed, printed and packaged in our Lawrence, Kansas studio.”

Find the Bookworm Pencil Set from Ruff House Print Shop.

Visit Ruff House Print Shop online.

Another artifact from my phone clean out is this shot. Now, any fan of Lost Cowboy knows I can’t pass a bike leaning up against a wall without taking a picture of it. I have presented many of these shots over the years right here. This shot, although taken by me, is not a natural setting – it is the product of the Disney Imagineers and a scene at the Animal Kingdom theme park.

Back in the 90’s there were a few years where I went to Disney World over the Labor Day weekend. While sorting through pictures on my phone and other devices the other day, I came across these two shots from more recent trips to the Magic Kingdom and they brought back some very real memories of two of my favorite treats. Left, the fabulous pretzels from the Germany pavilion at EPOC, anf right, the turkey legs you can score in Frontierland.

The fine folks at East Fork make some of the best pottery you will find anywhere and you should really check them out. But they also sell a bunch of other cool stuff you will love, like these Nini Vino Glasses.

About the Nini Vino Glasses available from East Fork:

“Borosilicate glass is a premium glass used to make vessels appropriate for everyday use. Unlike other glass, it does not crack under extreme temperature changes, making it suitable for putting in the dishwasher. Borosilicate glass is made up of about 15% boron trioxide, an ingredient that changes the behavior of glass and makes it thermal shock resistant. This allows the glass to resist extreme changes in temperature—borosilicate glass has the ability to go straight from a freezer to an oven without cracking and withstand temperatures of up to 932 °F. And so, this glassware can be used for both hot and cold beverages.”

Find the Nini Vino Glasses from East Fork.

Visit East Fork online.

OK, I will admit it, I am addicted to plastic straws. I know, I know. But I need to use a straw for just about everything I drink. I have tried cutting back to limit the use of the waste I produce, but the paper and metal straws I have found just haven’t worked for me. But now I have found a great (albeit pricey) solution – the Ceramic Straws I found from the fine folks at Chefanie – like their set of Ceramic Bamboo Straws.

About the Ceramic Bamboo Straws from Chefanie:

“A beautiful, reusable alternative to plastic straws. Each hand-rolled, ceramic straw is formed into a bamboo shape and covered with clear glaze.”

Find the Ceramic Bamboo Straws from Chefanie.

See all the complete reusable straw collection from Chefanie.

Visit Chefanie online.

Today’s find is not your grandmother’s dishrack. The Steel Frame Dishrack from the fine folks at Simple Human is way better, a dishrack for our times, and is is as elegantly designed as it is functional.

About the Steel Frame Dishrack from Simple Human:

“Our dishracks drain quickly and neatly — no puddles, water-spots, or residue. We even have a swivel spout to drain into the sink no matter how you position the dishrack. The inner plastic tray is precisely angled for optimum draining, but it also has a secret weapon — we added a hydrophilic coating that won’t allow water to bead or puddle. It spreads the water thinly across the surface for super-fast evaporation.”

This dishrack is so nice you will never want to hide it when guest come over for dinner. Heck, it will be the conversation of the night.

Find the Steel Frame Dishrack from Simple Human.

Visit Simple Human online.

A couple of weeks ago while chatting with a friend I mentioned I was between books and looking for a solid end of summer read. He said he has the perfect suggestion, The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides. I had heard of this book as it has been very popular and topped the best sellers list for a while, so I said what the heck. My friend told me it was quick read and perfect for a lazy summer’s day. I did not read anything about the book until I started it and just let the story take me away. The Silent Patient is a thriller with a splash of Agatha Christie style mystery thrown in and is entertaining while you are reading it. The plot is messy and there is a lot of spoilers, so it is best enjoyed going in cold.

About The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides:

“Alicia Berenson’s life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London’s most desirable areas. One evening her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and Alicia shoots him five times in the face, and then never speaks another word. Alicia’s refusal to talk, or give any kind of explanation, turns a domestic tragedy into something far grander, a mystery that captures the public imagination and casts Alicia into notoriety. The price of her art skyrockets, and she, the silent patient, is hidden away from the tabloids and spotlight at the Grove, a secure forensic unit in North London.”

So, yeah, I am recommending it as a mindless summer diversion – not as great literature. I finished the book in two sittings over a weekend and was fully engrossed, but after the fact thinking more about it it did not stand up. That said, reading reviews and stories about The Silent Patient and Mr. Michaelides himself, I understand many people love the book and the movie rights sold early. Mr. Michaelides himself is a screenwriter cum author, which makes sense, as the The Silent Patient plays out cinematically, which is actually a good thing in a summer book.

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides is available from Amazon and other fine booksellers everywhere.

It’s as my nana used to say: “life is too short to settle for a boring old yoga mat.”

Enter the fine folks at Take Care Space – purveyors of cool patterned yoga mats like their Traditional Magic Carpet Yoga Mat.

About the Traditional Magic Carpet Yoga Mat from Take Care Space:

“The Traditional Magic Carpet Yoga Mat is one of the oldest original Magic Carpet Yoga Mat designs. Fashioned after a Persian rug, it features ornate floral and diamond patterns to give your asanas structure and grace. Eco and you friendly PVC, non toxic yoga mat free of all the harmful stuff: phosphates, latex, and lead. Vibrant designs are printed with sustainable UV-cured inks. Created with love in California.”

Find the Traditional Magic Carpet Yoga Mat from Take Care Space.

Visit Take Care Space online.

I use a garden hose just about every day this time of year to keep my flowers and veggie plants well watered. Most days after I finish my watering. I just gather up the hose and leave it in a pile on the ground near the spigot. I can’t be bothered to wrap it neatly around the hose holder mounted to the back of the house. I can’t be bothered because my hose holder is a boring piece of heavy green plastic and is functional at best. However, I would wrap my hose every day if I have a hose holder as elegant as the Reindeer Leopard Hose Holder I found from the fine folks at Garden Glory.

About the Reindeer Leopard Hose Holder from Garden Glory:

“What says fierce and bold more than one of the best prints there is? Yes leopard, what else? Nothing is more timeless yet so in style as this animalistic look. This antler shaped hose holder in leopard is just what a fashionista needs. Put this wild child on your house facade and accentuate your hose even more.”

Heck, this hose holder is so nice (and expensive by the way) it is too nice to waste on a hose – it would be a great center piece of any room in your house.

Find the Reindeer Leopard Hose Holder from Garden Glory.

Visit Garden Glory online.

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