Emily's April 2018 Spire List
I've talked about it in a recent Energy Email (have you subscribed to our motivation Monday email yet??), but I love the energizing spirit of spring. There's something to be said about springtime's positive vibes and I could feel it even as I was reflecting on this month's Spire List. April's collection of uplifting, inspiring products, resources, and experiences is truly a list of things that added an extra spring in my step (no pun intended) these past few weeks. I hope they do the same for you.
There's a lot of movies that have been deemed "feel good films," but how many of them actually have a lasting feel-good feeling?
When I saw the I Feel Pretty trailer months ago, I already had a feeling I'd like it. I mean, it is a comedy about women's confidence that involves SoulCycle and an inevitable inspirational ending. Sign me up! But that didn't hold a candle to the movie itself.
I could write a long-form article just on how much I connected to this movie but all you need to know is that Oprah had Amy Schumer on Super Soul Sunday (click here for the podcast version) and called her a modern-day warrior woman for her work in I Feel Pretty. It gave us a glimpse into women and girls’ minds and Amy's character had the epiphany we’ve all been craving. It had me thinking, how have I held myself back because of my own personal perceptions? I cannot recommend this movie enough.
I've been a fan of Julia Engel's blog, Gal Meets Glam, since I was in high school. I always found her to be incredibly intentional with her platform and experiencing her evolution as a woman and an entrepreneur has been super inspiring. I also love that she shows the real hard work that goes into creating a successful business. It's easy to showcase the highlight reel, but something about her honesty on what it actually takes energizes the entrepreneur in me.
Anyway, now that I've shown my fan club badge, the reason this is on the list: she just launched the Gal Meets Glam Collection, which is her own label of classic, feminine dresses. She offers sizes from 0 to 20, they are all under $198, AND she'll launch a new collection every month. Seeing this brand come to life is a reminder that with a ton of hard work, embracing your authenticity, and patience (she's been developing this for YEARS), you can make anything happen. And with that, I ordered the Rose dress.
Okay, full transparency, this is the third time I've shared this on a Spire platform. It was in our newsletter. It was on our Instagram. Now it's on the Spire List. But if I could shout about this book from the mountain tops, I so would because it's that good.
I've bought countless copies in the past month, giving them to people from various corners of my life. There are not many books you can show to just about anyone and they connect with it, but then again, not everyone is Cleo Wade. She found a way to combine the most beautiful words into concise, transformative advice for living a better life. And if you have a hard time getting through a personal growth style book, this could be your answer. Each page has a different poem, quote, or piece of advice, so even if you just read a page at a time, you'll get something meaningful out of it.
My boyfriend and I recently visited our friends in Chicago for a long weekend. They had a Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream in their neighborhood and let me say, it lived up to the hype. This ice cream is INCREDIBLE. I loved learning about the founder, Jeni Britton Bauer (The Everygirl did a great profile on her which you can read here), and the ice cream shop itself is a perfect little dessert oasis. I tried the Wildberry Lavender and I couldn't get over how delicious it was. It felt relaxing like lavender tea but with that sweet, sugar jolt that comes with ice cream. Then I found out that they sell it by the pint in select stores! If you can find it in a grocery store near you, definitely give it a try!
I love a good to do list. It centers me in my work and eases my panic when things get overwhelming. I've always been a big fan of Rifle Paper Co.'s unique design style and when I saw this ostrich notepad, I snagged it for my late night Spire work sessions. Bonus: they are made in the U.S.A.
Our editor Katie and I got to brainstorming some fun projects for Spire and we fell in love with the idea of a mantra board. I found this white felt letter board for $33 and it came with 290 plastic letters to create inspiring quotes, uplifting messages, and just a personalized decorating moment (which I have a track record of enjoying). While they've become popular on Instagram for their simplistic, punchy style, I think there's something really neat about using it to create intentional reminders for yourself. Keep a lookout on our Instagram for a fun project we'll be cooking up with this.
After reading some of our latest posts on routines, I've been trying to get into a nightly routine of sorts. I have a habit of staying up until I'm unbearably tired, and then trudging my way to bed, but I know that isn't conducive to a good night's rest (or a good night in general). One simple practice I've added is turning on my tea kettle as I'm washing my face. Then as I'm getting ready for bed, I sip on Yogi's Bedtime Tea. Simply put, I love the taste of it. But even more so, I love that on each tea bag, there's a unique, inspiring quote. I always find that whichever bag I select, the quote is in line with something I needed to hear at that very moment. Don't you love when the universe works like that?
I've actually had this for a while, but I just committed to Whole30 (pray for me), so this $10 meal planner is particularly coming in handy these days. I like that something like this takes the guesswork out of your weekday meals when you're oftentimes too busy to plan out a nutritious meal, let alone remember to snag all the ingredients you'll need throughout the week. It eliminates a level of stress and it has helped me practice more conscious eating.
With its two-sided planning lists, I've gotten into the habit of listing out what I'd like to make for each meal on the "Cook This" side and then noting any foods I'll need to pick up at the grocery store on the "Buy That" side. I like that the tear-out style notepads make it easy to keep the list with you while you're shopping, rather than carrying around the hardcover planner.
9. O, The Oprah Magazine's Year of Big Questions
I'm a huge fan of O Magazine. I always have been. I think they have such a unique take on living your best life and I find myself thoroughly enjoying every page of their issues. This year, they kicked off a magazine campaign called, "The Year of Big Questions." Each month, they tackle a question we are all in some way asking ourselves, yet may not have deeply explored the answer. Some have been particularly culturally relevant and others have been more personal. Some have been both. The major intention behind the campaign is to ask questions that will, as their Editor-in-Chief explained, "Drive our readers to a new place."
I would say mission accomplished. So far, each question has struck me in a different, very personal way, and has left me contemplating how it relates to my own life. Considering media has such a tendency to be in one moment and out the next, I appreciate that this campaign has had such a lasting impact in my mind.
If you were to make a Spire List, what would be on yours? Share with me in the comments!