Things to Do - Cherish This Day & Random Links

darcytroutman (1 of 1)

HAPPY FRIDAY EVERYONE!! T saved up his allowance for this Chewbacca mask, it growls and everything. Sort of creepy. Sort of fun.

Have a great weekend and don't forget to check out this week's awesome on Cherish This Day!


* 1986 in photos. Wow, I feel old.

* "White savior Barbie." Funny??

* Top 10 family adventures in Europe. Each and every one sounds awesome.

* Drunk history on Harriet Tubman. This is awesome!

* 4000 years of world history in one single, beautiful chart. I wish this was a poster.

* 4 vital questions to teach your kids.

* Virginia's best hikes.

* An important reminder that sometimes donating money is better than donating things.

* Every Disney Theme Park in 75 hours.

* 24 movies you must watch before you turn 30 (I know we're all older than 30 now, but it's still a good list).


Things to Watch - Netflixing (April 2016)


* Our whole family is addicted to Brain Games, which analyzes how our brain processes the world in a fun quirky way (lots of interactive "games").

* P discovered Malcom in the Middle and I'm so excited to find a family sitcom that everyone in our house enjoys.

* Did you know that Netflix now has The Princess Bride, ET, Groundhog Day, and Harry and the Hendersons? So hurry up and pop some popcorn!


* T can't stop laughing at the Little Rascals movie.

* The girls still like Liv & Maddie and Jessie.


* I haven't watched a lot of TV lately, but the Adventures of Kimmy Schmidt Season 2 is cracking me up. I was nervous that the first season was a one hit wonder, but season 2 might be even better than season 1.



Places to Go - A Day at the Beach (in APRIL!) - Flag Ponds Nature Park (Lusby, MD)

Last Monday the kids had a random day off school, which I wasn't exactly thrilled about at first. But then the 83 degree forecast came out. So I talked my friends into a day at the beach. The water wasn't exactly swimmable, but still what a great way to celebrate the end of winter.

Flag Ponds is only about 1.25 hours from DC, making it the perfect day trip. It's also supposed to be a great place to find fossils and sharks' teeth, but we mainly played in the sand.



Things to Do - Grateful List (March 2016) & Cherish This Day

darcytroutman (1 of 1)

Based on this list, I watched an inordinate amount of TV in March. So it goes. Some months are just like that (I guess). Happy Friday everyone! Don't forget to check out this week's awesome on Cherish This Day!

* Watching The Heavy Water War (Netflix)
* Watching 30 Degrees in February (Netflix)
* Watching the IMAX National Parks movie at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History
* Watching Love (TV show) (Netflix)
* Watching Togetherness (TV show) (HBO/Amazon). Is anyone else watching this? I can't stop binging.
* Watching Naked & Afraid (TV show). We don't have cable, so I "discovered" this at our hotel in Williamsburg and now I'm obsessed.
* Taking Roxanne Bryan's Color Theory Class through Bloom Forum (so good!)
* Reading Annie Leibovitz's At Work
* Reading Kate Atkinson's A God in Ruins

* Walking to Le Pain Quotidien with Trina on a gorgeous 75 degree day.

* Orange Theory two days a week (love that place).
* A warm (and sunny) St. Patty's day Happy Hour at P. Brennans (remember how two years ago St. Patrick's day was a snow day?)
* The 4D movie at Ripley's Believe it or Not Museum (Williamsburg, VA)
* Our staycation spring break
M - Dog Park (Arlington, VA)
T - National Gallery of Art (Washington D.C.)
W - Calvert Cliffs (Lusby, MD)
Thurs - Busch Gardens (Williamsburg, VA)
F - Ripley's Believe It or Not museum (Williamsburg, VA)
* Hiking Potomac Overlook with Dan's family on Easter (Arlington, VA)

* My new office, which my amazing husband IKEAed and painted

* Drinks on the porch! (loving these 75 degree days)
* 10 kid capture the flag games in our yard on half days (girls vs. boys)
* P scoring lots of goals this indoor soccer season
* Our three "rules": (1) No TV on weeknights; (2) Never under any circumstances knock a picture frame off a wall; and (3) You must learn all the words to Paul Simon's Graceland
* Walking the dogs with Isla
* T and Cole designing a Leprechaun trap (and spending hours with it).
* "My mom might be TOO free-range" - P to her friend
* "Running" with Kelly
* P's new "book", "Sibling Wars"
* T on the Presidential candidates "I don't like any of them. Hillary seems mean. Trump is a big jerk. And the old guys wants us to share all our stuff and sometimes I don't want to share."
* Ending the month drinking with Allegra on her new back porch


F - A nice house to live in and food to eat, my family, Happy and Coco, my friends

P - Snuggles, cuddles, my friends, lots of stuff, watching Once Upon a Time

T - That I have a camera, that tomorrow's a half day, my bed, playing Monopoly, family movie night, reading books before bed, Cole coming over


Things to Do - Do you have a team?

darcytroutman (1 of 1)

The other day I was telling some of my friends about my hair stylist (who is wonderful), when one of them stated, "well, you know how Darcy gets about her team." It wasn't said in an evil or snarky way, just a simple statement, when I asked for an explanation she replied, "once you find someone you like, you go to them forever, and you sing their merits high and low." Which is true.

Some of this might be laziness, I hate finding new people to trust (just like I hate finding new stores to shop at). And I'm loyal. And I hate change.

But really, my "team" is crazy awesome. I can't say enough good things. So I thought I'd dedicate a blog post to shout outs, because trust me, all these people deserve shout outs. And I don't tell them often enough how thankful I am.

What about everyone else? Do you all have a team?


HAIR - Sharon at Elizabeth Arden Red Door Spa, Chevy Chase-. I've had short hair for 10(ish) years now and while I love how it looks freshly cut, often it starts to resemble a dead plant a few weeks later. Luckily (about 5 years ago), I discovered Sharon and now I wait much longer between cuts. She's a hair guru. No hard sell, no crazy hairdoos that look great in the salon and silly the next day. Just pure excellence. I will follow her to any salon. She cuts my kids' hair too (although Elizabeth Arden doesn't technically offer a children's price, Sharon discounts kids' cuts). Plus, she's one of the nicest people I know.

EYEBROWS/MICRODERM - Ruso at Mancini De Paris, Arlington. Ruso knows exactly what I mean when I say "not too big, not too small." This may seem like a simple thing, but most estheticians DO NOT know what I mean when I say this.

EXERCISE - Jessie's Thursday morning kickboxing class at Gold's Gym, Falls Church (Route 50) has been the highlight of my week for over ten years now. I plan my life around it. Lately, I'm also a little obsessed with Orange Theory Ballston. And I can't say enough good things about Journey Yoga Arlington.

SPRAY TAN - Samantha at Bronzed Berry. So this is a splurge, hence I only use Samantha's services once or twice a year (always before our Memorial Day beach trip). But Samantha makes tanning SO EASY. She brings a tent and sets everything up in my kitchen. It's cheap(ish) and fast. Plus a fake tan makes bathing suit season a little more bearable.

VETERINARIAN - Ryan Snow at Ballston Animal Hospital. I love my dogs. Well, most days. But I don't want to pay an arm and a leg for their medical care. Ryan never tries to upsell me or make me feel bad for asking about cost. Yet she tells me all the options and keeps my dogs healthy. I feel like I can go to her with anything and not worry that she'll make me feel guilty when I don't want to spend $1000 on lab tests.

INTERIOR DESIGN - Wendy at Wendy Jordan Design (wendy@wendyjordandesign.com). I first met Wendy over six years ago when our daughters became preschool friends. My then-four year old went for a playdate at Wendy's home and came home telling me "it's so beautiful there, mom. I want to move into their house." A few years later, we bought our now home and Wendy helped with furniture placement and wall color. Since then, whenever we need a room decorated, we call Wendy. It's like magic - she takes all our crazy ideas and makes them cohesive, with tons of great options and hand drawn picture of what the room will look like (I know it's silly, but these pictures make me so happy). I also love how I can tell her, "I need this to be cheap, think Ikea." And she finds everything for ridiculously low prices. She just designed the new office I'm siting in right now and I couldn't be happier.

On a similar note, a few years ago, I met Ame at Patricia Gold Interiors. Her style is a little bit classic, but also innovative and so much fun. Every time she posts a project, I swoon.

REALTOR - Katie Loughney with Keller Williams. This is a tricky one because Katie is also a friend and a client. But when we needed to sell our old house fast, she helped me update it (Katie even shopped with me at Home Depot for the right fixtures). She helped alleviate a lot of the stress that comes with selling/buying/moving (so much stress!). And the house sold in five days. Did I mention that Katie staged the whole first floor with amazing rental furniture? It looked so sheek we almost didn't want to move (almost).

Since our move, I've recommended Katie to several friends and everyone agrees she's awesome. You know how a good teacher can bring out the best in every student? Well, since working with Katie I've learned that a good realtor can bring out the best in every house.


Things to Do - Cherish This Day & Random Links

DarcyTroutman (1 of 1)

I'm still having a lot of computer problems (ugh, electronic devices!!), but new posts are coming. I promise.

In the meantime, don't forget to check out this week's awesome on Cherish This Day. I'm so lucky in that I babysit the happiest 4 year old on the planet. All she needs is a few stuffed animals and the smiles keep coming.



* Have you seen Simone Biles' new floor routine? I know nothing about gymnastics, but this is amazing to watch.

* Why affluent parents put so much pressure on their kids. I've read so many articles about insane over-parenting that look at the effects, I was glad to see someone finally write about the cause.

* I just checked out this new cookbook from the library (so excited!!). It's not as good as her last one, but still has lots of fun/easy/healthy recipes that I can't wait to make.

* We're hoping to visit here this summer. Doesn't it look awesome? (P's best friend went over spring break and said it was the "coolest place ever").

* Some of the original reviews of the Great Gatsby (it takes awhile for a classic to become a classic, or even "good" for that matter).


Things to Do - Cherish This Day & Random Links

darcytroutman (1 of 1)

HAPPY FRIDAY EVERYONE! We didn't adopt a new puppy (three dogs with three kids would be too much for me), but we have spent a lot of time fawning over our neighbor's new dog. Seriously, how cute is she?

Have a great weekend! And don't forget to check out this week's awesome on Cherish This Day!


* I can't stop staring at these photos of people blending with their surroundings. So trippy cool.

* I want to make/eat/devour this cake.

* On the record player - I've been looking for something new to listen to lately, excited to check these out.

* Gift guide: presents for the 2016 election season. Love these!

* I want this photography book.

* Is anyone else watching Togetherness? I binge-watched Season 1 (we don't have cable so I purchased it through Amazon) and can't wait to dive into Season 2. So so good! I'm so sad that there won't be a Season 3.

* The grave of the female stranger.

* Has anyone read Marvel's new comic Squirrel Girl? She sounds awesome!


Things to Read/Make/Eat - The Wilderness Ranger Cookbook


Every spring my goal is camp more often. But then summer comes, bringing pools and heat and lazy, and I lose momentum. Oh well, since it's only April, I'm still dreaming of days spent in the wilderness with family and friends.

One of the problems with camping is I never know quite what to cook, as one can only eat so many hot dogs and smores. So I'm pretty excited about my random library discovery of the Wilderness Ranger Cookbook, which has tons of fun/quirky/creative concoctions.



Things to Eat - 6 Week Meal Plan

darcytroutman (1 of 1)

We had a lazy few weeks - dinners out, illness, lazy nights. But we still managed to try some great new recipes.


* 1 pound baby onions
* 2 pounds large cherry tomatoes
* 2 pounds new potatoes
* olive oil
* 1 can cannellini beans
* A small bunch of basil

1. Preheat oven to 415 degrees.
2. Put the onions in a bowl and cover them with boiling water. Use a slotted spoon to fish them out and peel back the skins. Cut the largest onions in half.
3. Spread the onions on a roasting pan with the tomatoes and halved potatoes. Season with salt/pepper. And olive oil
4. Roast for 1 hour, mixing every 15 minutes.
5. Remove from the tray from the oven and add the drained beans and basil, then roast for another 15 minutes.

- slightly adopted from A Modern Way to Eat


MONDAY - Leftover chili from Sunday night.

TUESDAY - Turkey meatballs in tomato sauce (we substituted venison for the turkey) (via Sprouted Kitchen Bowl and Spoon)

WEDNESDAY - Zucchini rice gratin (via Food 52: Genius Recipes).

THURSDAY - Taco Torte (via Smitten Kitchen, the blog) with kale chips.

FRIDAY - Bibimbap bowls (Clean Eating). This has become a go-to weekday recipe, easy and the kids love it.

SATURDAY - Valentine's dinner at Texas Jack's (as a family).

SUNDAY - Salad for me; pizza at the neighbors' playdate for the kids.

WEEK 2 (Dan out of town)

MONDAY - Frozen pizza for the kids. Herbed green quinoa for me.

TUESDAY- Chicken breasts marinated in Trader Joe's Island Soyaki sauce and rice with kale chips on the side.

WEDNESDAY - Mac and cheese for the kids; leftover herbed green quinoa for me.

THURSDAY - Eggplant pasta sauce (via Food 52: Genius Recipes)/normal sauce for the kids).

FRIDAY - Hot dogs (T REALLY wanted hot dogs) and salad.

SATURDAY - Dinner club with friends.

SUNDAY - Chipotle.


MONDAY - Dinner out with friends. Perogies for Dan and the kids.

TUESDAY - Dinner out with Dan. The kids have mac and cheese.

WEDNESDAY - Sweet and sticky tomato and onion bake (recipe above).

THURSDAY - Dan out of town - salad for me, pizza for the kids.

FRIDAY - Venison tacos.

SATURDAY - Dinner club, we host (older kids) - venison kabobs, zucchini rice gratin (via Food 52: Genius Recipes), sweet and sticky tomato onion bake (via A Modern Way to Eat, and icebox cake (via the Kitchn).

SUNDAY - I have the flu. I have no idea what everyone ate for dinner.


MONDAY - Dan out of town, Parker and I have the flu, F makes mac and cheese and peas for her and T (godsend).

TUESDAY - Ledos pizza.

WEDNESDAY - Spaghetti (still feeling super lazy).

THURSDAY - Oven roasted chicken shawarma (via Wall Street Journal). This was awesome! Total keeper!

FRIDAY - Salad for me; hot dogs for T (girls at sleepover).

SATURDAY - The master hash (via Cooking Light). I love this recipe, it takes awhile to make but tastes fantastic.

SUNDAY - Chipotle.


MONDAY - Sweet potato and farro salad (via Cookie & Kate) and hot dogs for the kids. I realized you have to mix this REALLY well to blend the flavors, but once they blend, it tastes wonderful.

TUESDAY - One skillet mediteranean chicken (via Paleo Newbie), link via Not-So-SAHM. This was so so good.

WEDNESDAY - Cauliflower black bean bowl with guacamole (via Goop); black bean tacos for the kids. That bowl was crazy good, I'll be eating cauliflower rice more often now.

THURSDAY - Free pizza at school book exchange.

FRIDAY - Ledos pizza for happy hour (friends over).

SATURDAY - Portuguese sausage soup (via Epicurious). Yum! and easy! total winner.

SUNDAY - Dinner at our friends' house.



MONDAY - Sausage, cannellini bean, tomato ragout (via Cooking Light).

TUESDAY - Burrito bowls (via Dinner A Love Story, the blog). We eat these a lot because they're so easy.

WEDNESDAY - Pre-Saint Patrick's dinner of corned beef from Trader Joe's & cabbage with potatoes (via Epicurious). YUM!! Isn't St. Patty's day awesome? And, apparently, if you add a ton of butter to cabbage it tastes like dessert (well, almost).

THURSDAY - Early happy hour dinner at P Brennan's Irish Pub for St. Patrick's Day.

FRIDAY - Chicken with bacon and brusells sprouts (via Dinner A Love Story, the cookbook).

SATURDAY - Eggplant stacks (via me).

SUNDAY - Taylor Gourmet.


Things to Do - Cherish This Day & Random Links

darcytroutman (1 of 1)

Sorry for the silence lately, in the process of exporting files from my old Mac to my new Mac the old harddrive corrupted and dealing with that has taken a lot of work (fingers crossed that the genius bar can recover something on Saturday).

In the meantime, don't forget to check out this week's awesome on Cherish This Day. And next week, if all goes well, I have lots of new material to post.


* ‘Hikaru Dorodango’ is the Japanese Art of Turning Dirt into Perfect Spheres. Aren't these crazy beautiful?

* Everyone should read this fantastic essay on Nina Simone's face.

* I really want to do this!

* Why boys should read girl books.

* If you're looking for some inspiration, this is a fantastic photography workshop.

* Smithsonian sleepovers? Yes, please!


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