Feeling Thankful (and What I’m Listening to, Watching, and Eating)

I’m sitting outside on my patio at our new home. It’s a little gloomy, cool, and I can hear some rumbles from cars chugging by out front. Our surroundings are night and day compared to our previous home. Gone is the “family-friendly” environment (how our realtor had us describe it) and endless sounds of who knows what. Now, we’re surrounded by mountains and hills in the valley of Ventura County. This time last year, I’d just returned from ten plus days in New Mexico with IFWTWA. If you’d told me we’d be here this year, complete in a pandemic and me very pregnant, I wouldn’t have believed you. Yet, it’s a pretty thankful picture, I must say.

It’s been an extremely bumpy road to get here, not going to lie. But, I’m in that thankful feeling mode and thinking about Thanksgiving and being in a thankful mood. As I prepare more Holiday Gift Guides to unveil, here’s a few things that have been keeping me occupied….In between my pain flares and sleepless nights as baby Mabel kicks away in my huge belly.


As someone who’d never been much of a podcast listener, there are two that have been getting heavy play on my Spotify. Both are pretty niche-oriented, but first up is the Birth Kweens. Co-hosts Karly and Ali are a midwife and doula duo based out of San Diego. As a first time mother who is terrified of what’s to come when labor begins, the Kweens have a massive library of episodes covering anything and everything you’d possibly want to know about pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum.

From nutrition and inductions to chiropractors and home births, the Birth Kweens get very down and dirty about all things pregnancy. I’m determined to go into my delivery as educated as possible, and this podcast has given me plenty of topics to bring up with my doctor and hospital team.

The other show I’m loving whenever I’m driving around is the Smashing Pumpkast. This show, co-hosted by Pat and Frank, covers all things….you guessed it….Smashing Pumpkins! At first, I didn’t think it would hook me in. The Smashing Pumpkins are my favorite band, yet I’m not necessarily a “super fan” who needs to know every tidbit. Pat and Frank have quickly created an expertly crafted space with incredible guests and episodes covering the band’s most iconic albums. 90’s junkies will love their interview with Melissa Joan Hart. And if you had a cassette of 1993’s Siamese Dream, get ready for uber nostalgia as they discuss each track from the masterpiece record.

As I’m missing live shows hard, the Smashing Pumpkast is filling a bit of that void. I find myself talking and nodding along to the hosts as I listen.


In case you didn’t know, black lives still matter. In my ongoing efforts to support and educate myself on racial equality, Netflix recommended a limited series that drew me right in. Trial 4 tells the grim truth to the streets of Boston and the city’s not-so-great track record of wrongfully charging black individuals for murders and crime.

In 1989 and 1992, two specific murder cases occurred that pointed to African American men pulling the trigger. Or, did they? Trial 4 is one of many important docu-series that’s come out as of late and is an incredibly eye-opening watch.


I still am loving any chance I get to eat tacos. Do you think this will make Mabel a super fan or completely not into them? I was excited to discover that Rubio’s Coastal Grill will be doing a unique box set for Black Friday. 

Their “Peace, Joy & Burritos” Gift Box will be available on November 27th. It’ll include everything the taco and burrito lovers on your list will devour. Each gift box is $39.95 (valued at $120), and features a unique collection of hand-selected items to stay cozy at home this holiday season. 

Each box has: $30 in Rubio’s free entrée gift cards, a 60″ fuzzy, round, double-sided burrito blanket, plush heather gray socks with custom-embroidered Rubio’s logo, vanilla and cinnamon scented churro candle, complete with matches, a 200-piece jigsaw puzzle featuring a one-of-a-kind, Rubio’s-inspired, retro beach design, and exclusive recipe cards.

I don’t know about you, but aside from the gift cards, I’ll be all about the churro scented candle.

Because I’m feeling in a thankful mood, head on over to my Instagram. I’m so excited to be working with Rubio’s for a flash giveaway (two days only!). One lucky participant will win a free Peace, Joy and Burritos box, courtesy of Rubio’s. Enter now. xo