Day in the Life

Summer Plans, Part One

For me, summer officially starts on the last day of school but this year was different. Our youngest graduated from high school in June, and there was so much more going on than the usual end of year picnics and the slide into camp schedule. All good things, just really, really different. Prom, graduation, graduation parties, award ceremonies, and family get-togethers- all wonderful but a super busy time. And I have a few part-time gigs going on… so lots of juggling on my part, and I am not really all that good at juggling.

And I always think that summer means slowing down, catching my breath and reading with my toes in the sand.

Do I ever have that summer? Have I ever had that summer? Definitely not, and while I do try to carve out at least a few beach days here and there – I have goals, people! I try to catch up on my reading, get to a Red Sox game or two, and hang out with my family. How am I doing so far? Reading, check – I have this great poster of 100 Essential Novels to keep me on track  – you scratch them off when you’ve read them – so fun!

Then it occurred to me to see how many of these classic books have been made into movies and to watch them this summer. Well, maybe I won’t finish this summer. Here’s what I am watching and reading and, in some cases, re-watching and re-reading. Make it a family movie night, and take turns choosing from your favorite adaptations. All are available on Fios – click on the image for more info.

To Kill a Mockingbird (Gregory Peck)

Pride and Prejudice – any version except the zombie one, but, hey, no judgement if you’re into that.

Gone With The Wind

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Great Gatsby (again, choose your favorite – Redford or DiCaprio). No zombie version available, thankfully.

The Scarlet Letter – Demi Moore or the 1934 version.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Well, that should get you started with the classics. Also on my list:

The Fault in our Stars

Me Before You

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Water for Elephants

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Help

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And no summer would be complete without the movie that made me afraid to go in the water for an entire summer.

Yes, Jaws.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Disclosure – I am a member of a Verizon #BostonFios influencer team (a natural for me – a Verizon superfan!) and we are compensated for social shares. All opinions are, and always will be, my own.

Upgrading with Fios

During my transition from being a Stay at Home Mom to a Work At Home Mom, I have been lucky to have great service through Verizon Fios. We have always had land line, internet, television and wireless service with Fios, and as our family grew and our use of iPads, computers, and cell phones grew with it. Considering that we hadn’t even looked at upgrading speed options since we first got Fios (in 2008), and our usage has definitely increased, I recently upgraded and am thrilled with how fast I can search sites, update blog posts – even with the house full of people streaming on their devices.

The speed and convenience that I now take for granted was highlighted even more  after a weekend at my parent’s house that definitely does not have Fios, and where I had to navigate their patchwork of services. Next project, set the parents up with Fios!

The Verizon representative was thorough, knowledgeable, professional and courteous. After the super easy, non-intrusive installation was complete, he helped me run a speed test on the computers and installed another Verizon router upstairs (we have a weird, old house) so now all of the house is covered. He also patiently answered all of my many questions. Great customer service again. Thanks Verizon!

So, if you have Verizon already – here is the Verizon Speed Test – give it a try. Don’t have Verizon yet? Just click here and see if it is in your area. Verizon Fios Boston

So while I am occasionally still locked out of Netflix, I now have the fastest download speed available and I am never at a loss for something great to watch.

 

Disclosure – I am a member of a Verizon #BostonFios influencer team (a natural for me – a Verizon superfan!) and we are compensated for social shares. All opinions are, and always will be, my own.

 

 

 

A Mother’s Day to Remember

Choosing Mother’s Day gifts has always been one of my favorite things to do, and except for the year I bought my mom a super ugly porcelain (!) flower pin from a church bazaar, I think I’ve nailed it. Luckily for my mom, my gift giving skills have improved, as has my access to shops. And as a Mom, I appreciate and love the simplest of things on Mother’s Day like hand-picked violets, a card, and maybe food I don’t cook myself, for at least one meal, anyway.

So, Mother’s Day is tomorrow, people! Forgot? Don’t worry. My friends and I at Go Local Boston have you covered.

First, head to either Medfield or Weston to one of the locations of Brothers Marketplace, my top go-to place for the freshest, most gorgeous flowers and yummy treats. They always have beautiful floral arrangements if you’re in the grab and go mode (me, always).

Since ideally Mother’s Day means nobody cooks, and trying to eat out can be stressful when you have young ones, put together a yummy cheese board with some fresh fruit, crackers or bread and some sparkling wine and cider. Grab a quiche – yummy, or some of the wonderful prepared food. You will be a star.

Gifts? got you covered, there, too.  Greentail Table in Newton is a great place for creative gifts for mom, from cool water bottles to sweet dish towels and gorgeous tableware. You can easily pull together a thoughtful and beautiful gift. Owner Linda de Valpine has a fantastic eye and everything in this store is gorgeous. Really, buy me absolutely anything from here.

Local love continues with beautiful cards, gift tags and stickers from Elizabeth at Bottle Branch. And as an extra bonus? You’ll learn something about plants because she’s also a botanist. And she and a friend co-wrote the super great site Manners for Mothers which I loved.


Even more local love local to Barbara at the Newton fave Sense and Humor – a great website with completely fun gifts for any time of year – my favorites for Mother’s Day? Add some tea and honey and a some cookies or a tea bread and you are good to go.

 

Don’t skimp on dessert – Mom has a sweet tooth, too! Praline in Belmont has the most delicious tarts and I should know, I sampled them all to ensure this is true – you are welcome.

Photos and fun from my cohorts at Go Local Boston:

KimWorld

A little bit about a lot of things

Leah’s Life: Pearls and Oysters

What do I want? I’m super low maintenance – well, I think I am anyway,  I don’t want a big brunch out or expensive gifts, a handmade card and some time with my family is the perfect gift. Okay, and that not cooking thing.

Feeling Art-y?

For Mother’s Day –  the outdoor market at SOWA is closed tomorrow, but the studios at SOWA Artists Guild are open. Maybe I’ll drag everybody to the Isabella Stewart Gardner or MFA. Or the newly renovated Boston Public Library.

 

 

 

Traveling with Fios

Over April break, our family traveled together, and with two teens in tow, you know we had our tech at the ready. Unsure of the available in flight and potentially long airport layover entertainment options, we all downloaded books and movies to our devices at the same time one day. Luckily, we have Verizon FIOS and it was a snap because of Verizon’s super fast download speed.

And we all had favorite apps – Verizon Fios Mobile, Hoopla (a free service offered by your public library that lets you borrow video, music and audio books), and HBO Go (accessed through our Verizon Fios account).

So books and movies were downloaded, devices and batteries charged, secured in our carry-ons, and we were on our way. As usual, I packed a variety of travel friendly snacks and we were off and running.

My youngest daughter even brought an adorable heart shaped headphone splitter so she and her sister could watch their favorite shows together which came in handy.

What did we watch? La La Land, Lion, Hidden Figures, Good Will Hunting, and several episodes of Friends. Books? I caught up on The Alchemist and, for something lighter, The World’s Best Life Hacks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Everyone had their favorite diversions and we all shared our favorite picks with each other. Family trips are great opportunities for a shared experience – and even a long layover can be a chance for bonding with your shared earbuds and some snacks Mom packed.

 

Disclosure: I am working with a Verizon Fios team of bloggers to help get the word out about Fios coming to Boston. While I am being compensated for sharing, all opinions are, as always, my own. And yes, yes I do, watch a lot of tv. No judgement.

 

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