Friday Fab Five

Detail: Eileen Fisher wedge espadrille sandals in light gold. More at une femme d'un certain age.

This week had its share of frustrations, but here are a few things that made me happy.

The Fab Five

These wedge espadrille sandals. After trying a few of the styles I featured last week, I did end up going with the first pair. We’ve had warm enough weather the last couple of days that I’ve been able to wear them at length. They are SO comfortable and I love that soft metallic gold!

My new washer and dryer. After 21 years of an apartment-sized stacked top-loading washer/dryer unit (similar style to this one, but a Maytag) this new full-sized front-loading machine is a revelation. With the old machine, I couldn’t wash comforters or even a full set of sheets at once. With these machines I can, plus there are all kinds of special settings that I’ve already found useful. Like the “Instant Refresh” feature on the dryer. If you have something that’s rumpled but doesn’t need washing, this setting tumbles and steams it for 10 minutes to remove creases. Brilliant! And I swear my clothes come out MUCH cleaner than with the old washer.

The Instant PotOMG, this is worth it for the hard-boiled eggs alone. I’ve also used it to quick cook some boneless chicken breasts to use in salads. Can’t wait to try some actual recipes!

 

moka coffee maker from Bialetti

Real coffee! We’re beginning to settle in to the new kitchen. (Although we’re STILL waiting on some finish work to be done before I show you the full Before and After.) But the space is mostly functional and I’ve been able to make freshly ground and brewed coffee on the stove again. I’m taking my time re-populating from storage in the garage to allow us to get a sense of the space and ergonomic aspects. It’s a very different footprint from the old kitchen.

One more thing about the new design I really like is that I can use the counter as a standing desk. I’ve been trying to spend less time sitting, and this is an easy way to accomplish that.

Good Customer Service. This week I’ve had a few email exchanges or phone conversations with various customer service reps, and they’ve been 100% positive. Especially FedEx, who called yesterday morning because a package they were supposed to deliver had been damaged, and they wanted to know if I wanted it to be delivered anyway or returned. As the FedEx rep was examining the contents for damage, she said “oh trust me, you don’t want this,” so it’s being returned. She saved me the hassle of having to do it, and this week I’m grateful for any small annoyances avoided!

Tell me about the good stuff in your week!

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33 Comments

  1. karen h
    February 2, 2018 / 3:32 am

    YAY for the little things that are going right! i’m not having that kind of week, but i’m glad someone is….

  2. Jane B.
    February 2, 2018 / 4:11 am

    Like Karen, my week has been one I hope I never repeat. Hearing that someone IS having a good week is very uplifting! Now if it would would just STOP snowing!

  3. Susan
    February 2, 2018 / 4:35 am

    I am looking forward to seeing your new kitchen. Those espadrille sandals look extremely comfortable and stylish.

  4. Addison Husted
    February 2, 2018 / 5:13 am

    Love seeing your red toes peeking out of those beautiful sandals. Kind of like seeing spring tulips!

  5. Kim
    February 2, 2018 / 5:15 am

    It’s those small victories that help make life pleasant, isn’t it? I’m so glad your home improvements are suiting you so splendidly. The Eileen Fisher sandals were my favorites because of the wide straps ;). Have a wonderful weekend!

  6. Ellen
    February 2, 2018 / 5:25 am

    With your new washer and dryer, you undoubtedly have a wool wash setting. Take full advantage of it. I use this to wash every sweater I own including the cashmere ones, as well as the wool. Experimenting with some clothes I intended to donate to the Goodwill, I have also washed all manner of wool clothing, including mens wool trousers, and a couple of coats. Keep the water level high and cold, dry flat. Trust me: your clothing will feel better and last longer for not being permeated with all those dry cleaning chemicals, and the environment will benefit as well.

    I am very much looking forward to your new kitchen photos, and I hope you will include dimensions. I am steeling myself to embark on a kitchen remodel sometime this year, and I suspect our homes are of similar size and style.

    • Hope
      February 2, 2018 / 6:03 am

      This is so interesting, Ellen. What brand of washer do you have? It sounds wonderful to be able to wash wool and not have those dry cleaning chemicals in my home.

      • Ellen
        February 3, 2018 / 6:26 am

        Fischer Paykel. Came with the house, hate it, wouldn’t recommend it. Its a top loading HE: not a combination that is a very effetive cleaner. But i still wash my sweaters in it; my previous Sears Kenmore worked bette. Anyway, I use the Wool wash setting (it agitates only intermittently), and a mild organic detergent like Seventh Generation. I’ve done it for years with both high end fibers, and my own hand knits (far more prescious to me, and I knit with expensive fibers) and I have never lost anything yet.

    • Susan B
      Author
      February 2, 2018 / 6:34 am

      Hi Ellen, I’ve actually been washing my wool and cashmere sweaters at home for some years now. I use a lingerie bag in the machine, and the “Delicates” setting (which is what my new machine has as well). I avoid dry cleaners as much as possible! 🙂

      • Katie
        February 2, 2018 / 7:22 am

        delicate cycle with The Landress wool & cashmere shampoo; – yes!

        • Lea
          February 2, 2018 / 8:25 am

          Do you wash your silk scarves? I’ve always sent them to the cleaners.
          Looking forward to new kitchen pictures!

          • Susan B
            Author
            February 2, 2018 / 8:30 am

            Yes, I do. I just use a lingerie bag and delicates wash. You can read about my recent experiment with washing an Hermès scarf here.

  7. February 2, 2018 / 6:32 am

    My five:

    I found blush pink Weejuns at dsw yesterday.
    chocolate sea salt covered almonds
    friends to run with in the mornings
    toddler giggles
    Jo Malone lip conditioner

  8. February 2, 2018 / 6:44 am

    Having moved in the opposite direction over a year ago, from full-sized machines that I’d chosen to stackable condo-sized that I hadn’t, I’m envying your new machines and so pleased for you. And although I know you have some hurdles and a fair bit of work ahead as you shift all your kitchen supplies back into their new place, I know you’re going to be so happy with your new “cuisine” — can’t wait to see the photos.

  9. Marguerite
    February 2, 2018 / 7:28 am

    Love those espadrilles! Would you wear them in Paris in May? Maybe too much exposure. Looking forward to your pics of your new Kitchen. We’re in week one of a total master bath reno. Getting used to no privacy from 8a to 5p!

    • Susan B
      Author
      February 2, 2018 / 8:06 am

      Hi Margeurite, I’ve rarely found it warm enough May in Paris for sandals. If I did bring sandals, I’d probably stick with a lower pair, just for comfort and safety on uneven surfaces. These “Sport” sandals have worked well for travel, and have a similar strap configuration.

  10. Sharon
    February 2, 2018 / 8:25 am

    I too avoid dry cleaners as much as possible. But I find that machine washing (even with Woolite and using proper lingerie bags) wears clothes out faster and they lose body. Do you use any helpful conditioners? As I read in the comments of an earlier post, my Eileen Fisher tops also seem to be the most impacted even though they are washed exactly to instruction.

  11. amidprivilege
    February 2, 2018 / 9:16 am

    I think espadrilles are THE THING for the summer of 2018. Closed toe, open toe, no matter. So in keeping with the 70s trend, but not quite skinny rib mock turtles and high-waited bell-bottoms;). So glad you are liking your Instant Pot, I can point you to some good recipes if you like. Especially a great one for bone-in chicken curry. <3

  12. Kathy Hendrickson
    February 2, 2018 / 9:23 am

    The good stuff in my week? Your posts!! Honestly, I look forward to them every day/week! Love the espadrilles, thinking about ordering, It’s a bleak February day and I’m longing for some Springtime!!

  13. Donna Oliphint
    February 2, 2018 / 11:02 am

    I just ordered an Instant Pot Duo an hour or so ago. Have read and read about which to order and finally settled on the one EVERYONE is out of. William Sonoma is supposed to ship 2/13 . Also just got a set of Samsung front loaders on stands and LOVE them. They wash and dry so much quicker than my old set, and my clothes aren’t nearly as wrinkled coming out of the washer. (I line dry most of my clothes.) Can’t wait to see pics of your new kitchen. And please post any good Instant Pot recipes you come across.

  14. Susan Harper
    February 2, 2018 / 11:18 am

    I was on the fence about the instant
    pot but now maybe I will get one. I can’t wait to see your kitchen.

  15. Elizabeth
    February 2, 2018 / 12:29 pm

    -Clean bill of health on my colonoscopy Tuesday
    -husband took great care of me Tuesday
    -got exercise in 4 of 5 days
    -College son #1 came home for dinner and cooked the most wonderful burgers for us
    -Made airline/hotel reservations to visit son # 2 at college near Boston (he’s performing his own works in a student composers’ recital) (here’s YouTube link of him playing some of his piano sonata:) https://youtu.be/07x3puMc36U
    Also– I love my Instant Pot — I make yogurt in it weekly

    • Claire
      February 2, 2018 / 2:13 pm

      Matthew’s sonata is wonderful, cheering him on for the recital.

      • Elizabeth
        February 2, 2018 / 6:34 pm

        Thank you so much, Claire:)

    • Susan B
      Author
      February 2, 2018 / 6:39 pm

      Oh what a lovely piece! He’s very talented.

      • Elizabeth
        February 3, 2018 / 6:02 pm

        Merci:)

    • February 3, 2018 / 12:24 am

      Wonderful music! Matthew is very talented.

      • Elizabeth
        February 3, 2018 / 6:03 pm

        Thank you, Sue! He is truly dedicated to his music!

  16. Isabel
    February 2, 2018 / 3:35 pm

    Dear Susan, I love the espadrilles and they are fantastic for our Australian weather. I also love your red toenails, must try the vibrant colour. You always look amazing and you are an inspiration for me, I certainly have ‘glamourized’ myself since I started reading your blog.

  17. February 4, 2018 / 4:23 pm

    My recent “five things” ….

    * Pedicure — also went red!
    * Found on sale a red boiled wool, unlined coat for spring — I’m more than ready for color after the winter blacks.
    * Booked three nights at the Danieli in Venice before a wine-themed cruise to Croatia, Greek Isles and Athens and time in Athens afterward … BAM!
    * Snowing here tonight with candles burning in the windows.
    * “Comedians in Cars Drinking Coffee”

  18. Tiffany Bradbury
    February 11, 2018 / 9:42 am

    Hi Susan. I love the wedge espedrilles you chose. They look very comfy. What brand are they? I’m. Hairstylist and I’m always on the look out for cute comfortable shoes!

    • Susan B
      Author
      February 11, 2018 / 9:44 am

      Hi Tiffany, thanks, here’s the link: http://shopstyle.it/l/xRro They’re available in several colors too.

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