10 things I can't live without - 2016

Monday, August 29, 2016

Last week I revisited the 10 things I said I couldn't live without back in 2012.  In case you didn't read the post or the original post, to clarify, these items are not essentials - I can actually live without these 10 things, but the idea was to use this as a branding exercise.  So here we are in 2016 and here is my new list  - a few repeats and few things that are categorically similar but not quite the same. Here goes (in no particular order):

Hong Kong - I lived in Hong Kong for ten years from 1980 to 1990.  It is my childhood home and was my parents' home again from 2007-2012 (during which time I visited often during work trips to Asia).  Hong Kong will always hold a special place in my heart. The smells, sights, sounds (I heard jack hammers on the street the other day and it took me back to being a kid) and culture played a formative role in who I am as an adult.  I like to think that my open-mindedness, love of travel and appreciation of other cultures all stem from my childhood experiences in Hong Kong

Ramen - This was on the list the first time around and will most likely remain on the list moving forward. Ramen and just about any type of noodle soup is my all time favorite food. I think soupy noodles are the Asian equivalent of pizza or mac and cheese - pure and simple comfort food. I am a total sucker for intense flavor and spice so ramen is a perfect food for me - hydrating, flavorful, spicy, and nutritious (when the right items are included - veggies, eggs etc).  I'm making myself hungry just writing this!

Red lipstick - It took me a while to jump on the red lip bandwagon, but now I'm a convert. I find that when I'm dressing up for date night or a work function, a red lip really just ups the ante. I could be wearing torn jeans, a tee and clogs and the red lipstick can turn what is seemingly mom-wear into something going-out worthy.

Sketchbook - Specifically my small graph paper Moleskine sketchbook. I keep notes in here as well as all of my concept sketches for new hardware lines. I often carry it on the train - it's the perfect size for my purse.  My sketchbook helps keep me organized and consolidates all of my ideating into one place.  I would be a mess without it.

Bryr clogs - I have a love hate relationship with these clogs. I've had a few quality issues with them, but I absolutely adore the fit and the edgy designs. Unlike your regular Danskos or Swedish Hasbeens, Bryr clogs are made by hand to order (the price tag reflects this) and the designs are way more fashion forward. They are comfortable enough to trek around the city or to walk a trade show floor without getting blisters and they really elevate any outfit.

Hermes Un Jardin Sur le Nil Perfume - As I mentioned in last week's post, perfumes, and smell in general have a way of taking me back to a specific time and place. Obviously, this is not unique to me.  Because of this, when I go on a big trip I like to treat myself to a new perfume at the duty free shops. Last year when Scott and I went to Portugal, I fell in love with the fresh scent of Hermes Un Jardin Sur le Nil. It's now my go-to perfume and conjures up such fond memories of summer and wandering around the beaches of the Algarve and the cobblestone streets of Lisbon.

Craigslist - I mean, do people actually still use Craigslist in the land of Chairish, One Kings Lane, and local Facebook groups? The answer is yes. I still find that for the specific item that you are looking to source locally, Craigslist is a great bet. From my entry console ($50) to Lucy's bedroom loveseat ($40) to my King sized brass headboard ($75), I have scored so many amazing items on the super cheap via Craigslist. The key is to know what you are looking for and to keep checking back.

Our house - Sometimes I have to pinch myself when I think about the fact that we live in such an amazing house.  Living in our 1879 Victorian also makes me feel like a real adult (for better or worse).  I mean, it obviously is an adult house when it comes to the amount of money we have to put in for maintenance, but also, when I think about what kind of person would live in our house, the person is a forty or fifty year adult with older kids - not us!  So it's kind of weird to think that we live here.  It's the kind of house that some would call a forever house.  And it will definitely take a lifetime to complete all the projects I have planned, so I certainly don't have to worry about ever being "done".  Stay tuned on the blog as we continue to make changes and renovate one room at a time.

Airbnb - As an Airbnb host for about six months now I have a new appreciation of this site. It provides us with supplemental income for our household, and the user interface and hosting system is really top notch. But I also love Airbnb as a traveller.  We've booked homes in the Fingerlakes, Portugal, New Hampshire and Maine for a fraction of the cost of a hotel room (or multiple hotel rooms). Booking an entire home or apartment has become so easy and is so key when traveling with small children - I have no idea what I'd do without it.

Vinho verde  - This is my summer staple wine. We discovered it on our honeymoon in Italy (I guess the Italians have a local version) and then again when we were in Portugal. It's slight effervescence and lower alcohol content make it refreshing and easy to drink on a hot evening.  And the price point doesn't hurt either.  Go find some at your local wine shop!

Well, that's it folks. What are your 10 things you can't live without? Stay tuned as we explore our top 10 lists for the rest of the Nest Studio team.