It’s the longest day of the year today, and it sure does feel like it! Not that it’s a bad thing — I am quite amazed at how we’re already well into June and don’t mind a day off feeling a bit longer.
Why am I off, you ask? Well, my HS bestie is in town for a visit and we’re taking on San Francisco like never before. We have tickets to a comedy show, a comedy drag show, wine country and more… a jam-packed 72 hours is in our future.
She even brought a little southern sunshine with her, as our temps climb into the 80s and SF residents freak the F out over the heat. I’m not immune to freakouts myself — life without central A/C is no joke.
So although it’s been a few weeks of less-than-stellar obsessions, I promise to be back at it again like Damn, Daniel next Wednesday.
In the meantime, please enjoy…
As of this writing, my sister-in-law will be induced any minute to begin delivery of my second niece… and I can’t contain my excitement! It’s been absolutely incredible seeing my first niece grow and develop over the past two and a half years, and I know she’ll be an amazing big sister. Baby will likely arrive tomorrow, but I’m celebrating now anyway. We won’t quite be birthday twins, but she’ll always be a firecracker in my eyes.
Here’s what else I’m celebrating:
- Anchor Brewing: One of my work teams visited this brewery for a tour last week, and it didn’t disappoint. My fave so far is the Meyer Lemon Lager — perfect for a sultry summer day. Anchor also has a spectacular setup at AT&T Park’s neighbor, The Yard, where you can enjoy craft drafts alongside America’s favorite pastime.
- 4th of July: Speaking of ‘Merica, it’s only fitting that we start celebrating its birthday (and mine) early. The US of A is turning 240, after all. I’ll be camping in Tahoe with my boyfriend and a group of great friends, but no matter what you’re up to, keep it classy and stay safe!
- A Wireless Weekend: And now, speaking of Tahoe, I’m pretty pumped to go off the grid for a few days. My cell reception will be spotty, which is just what I need for a bit of rest and relaxation. As long as my niece arrives before then, I’m OK with missing birthday notifications on my actual birthday.
- Miley Cyrus – “Party in the USA”: I know, I hate me too. But what better way to get the people going than with such poetic prose as “Noddin’ my head like yeah / Movin’ my hips like yeah”? It’s cheesy and awful but the perfect party earworm for Lady Liberty (plus, a hefty payday for Jessie J).
Well friends, I’m visiting San Fran this weekend to find an apartment! I’m excited and anxious and hope to find something in a flash. It’ll all work out in the end, I know, but here’s what I’m focused on until my flight.
- Miracle Treat Day: Grab a treat from Dairy Queen this Thursday, and they’ll donate a portion of proceeds to cancer research. Helping others has never tasted so good.
- Hornblower Cruises: My office is having its summer outing this afternoon, aboard a mega yacht for more than a thousand people. Toot toot!
- Robin Williams: His death is heartbreaking, but not unheard of. The depression he suffered only magnifies how talented a performer he truly was. Rest in peace, Robin.
- “Dude Looks Like a Lady” – Aerosmith: Tough as it is to narrow down my favorite movie of his, “Mrs. Doubtfire” will always have my heart. The soundtrack alone was just perfect.
Since I’m officially a senior citizen and enjoy discussing the weather at great length, I thought you should know that my KNEECAPS were sweating yesterday. Sunshine is finally upon us in the city, and I couldn’t be happier to show up at work with soaked knees and a flushed face.
Lovely visuals, huh? Let’s get some nicer ones in your mind:
- “Game of Thrones”: I know, I know. I’m way behind on this one, because my stubborn inner voice said I’d never enjoy such an unbelievable show. Well, I’m hooked. Just seven episodes in, I plan to binge-watch all weekend.
- Warmer Weather: Isn’t it obvious? I can finally put away my sweaters and pants, and trade them for tank tops and flip-flops! My summer wardrobe is ON POINT (thanks to decades in Florida), so I’m sure my office is also thankful to see my oatmeal sweaters retire.
- 230 Fifth: The rooftop space of this swanky hotel and lounge was perfect for a summer concert. Their service wasn’t great, but the views and atmosphere more than made up for it.
- Platinum Album – Miranda Lambert: That summer concert I just attended? It was for the Queen of Country, whose latest album I’ve had on repeat since yesterday’s release. “Platinum,” “Priscilla” and “Somethin’ Bad” are my top tunes so far.
The best part of a long weekend? Um, it’s a long weekend.
The worst part of a long weekend? It takes the rest of the week to figure out what day it actually is.
I’m 80% certain it’s Wednesday, so here you go, faithful followers:
- Treasure Island: A few days of sand and surf were more than enough to send me straight to relaxation station. You have to check out this idyllic vacation spot the next time you’re in Florida — I know I will!
- Allison’s Baptism: My niece, AKA the cutest child alive, was baptized this weekend and I’m honored to be her Godmother. Just look at that smile! She’s obviously perfect. And trouble.
- The Fault in Our Stars: This book deserves its own post, because I devoured it in less than 24 hours and felt all the feels. The movie looks interesting, too … even if I don’t like Shailene Whatsherface.
- “Not a Bad Thing” – Justin Timberlake: Well, JT does it again. I’ve learned that an earworm stuck in our heads for days is just his MO. The video is also great, because, you know, Jusssstin.
The sun finally decided to show for longer than three hours this week, which can only mean one thing: Summer is (basically) here! No more jackets, no more tights, no more PANTS. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
- Summer Fridays: I couldn’t be more thrilled my office participates in this new-to-me tradition. Starting this week, we can leave each Friday afternoon to get the weekend going early. HALLELUYER!
- “Girl Code”: My roommate introduced me to this super funny female version of MTV’s “Guy Code.” Topics covered include: girls’ night out, the gyno, working out and so much more. New episodes air Tuesdays at 930 and 1030 p.m. EST.
- Memorial Day: This weekend is extra-long thanks to Monday’s observance of those who’ve sacrificed their lives in the line of duty. I’d like to say I’m doing something meaningful, but I’ll probably just be raising a glass from a rooftop party.
- “Cruel Summer” – Ace of Base: The ol’ iPod shuffled this to the top of my playlist this week, so I’ve naturally put it on repeat each day. I prefer it to the Bananarama version, but I’ll give you two scoops just for being here.
It’s too hot to type. My fingers are swollen and the keys have simultaneously gotten smaller. Presenting my required faves to beat this miserable heat:
Homemade popsicles; recipe here
Breezy fabrics in cool prints
Bronzer-moisturizer combo with built-in SPF
And of course, a summer playlist
Between this summer’s relentless rain and suffocating humidity, my face melts off daily and I’m in a piss-poor mood. What’s a girl to do? Stick head in freezer, sit in front of fan and crank up these tunes. Presenting Wittyburg’s Summer Playlist:
- Big Pimpin’, Jay Z. Let’s get this started with a bang and ri-i-i-i-i-ide.
- Cruel Summer, Ace of Base or Bananarama. I prefer the AoB version, but whichever tickles your pickle will be just fine.
- Margaritaville, Jimmy Buffett. Classic, classic, classic. Best enjoyed on the rocks with salt.
- Summertime, Kenny Chesney. Any song that mentions bare feet, bikinis and Yoo-hoo is a winner in my book.
- All of the Lights, Kanye West. From the sick thumping beat to Kanye’s classic way with words, this is my latest iPod fave for summer workouts.
- Boys of Summer, Don Henley or The Ataris. I love both versions and will happily raise a glass to these boiz.
- Summertime, Sublime. The livin’s easy in LBC (Long Beach County), and the boys of Sublime are just too cool.
- Tonight, Tonight, Hot Chelle Rae. I can’t get enough of this upbeat hook and melody. Currently obsessed!
- Summer Girl, Jessica Andrews. Her bumper sticker reads, “Drink till he’s cute.” Hello, life motto.
- Hot in Herre, Nelly. You can put a Band-Aid on my face anytime, Cornell Haynes, Jr.
- Summer Nights, Rascal Flatts. I may or not be biased with the Daytona reference … but it’s still a great tune.
- Summer of ’69, Bryan Adams. It’s the quintessential light-rock song that you know every (fifth) word to.
- American Honey, Lady Antebellum. Sickly sweet lyrics and a heavenly voice make it a go-to.
- Summer Girls, LFO. Those Lyte Funky Ones sure know how to drop a rhyme. Bonus points if you like ruby-red slippers and a bunch of trees; the great Larry Bird, jersey 33.
- Steal My Sunshine, Len. The video was filmed in Daytona (biased again), but the beat is more infectious than Herpes Simplex I.
- Blister in the Sun, Violent Femmes. Heard at every bar all summer long, you can’t argue with this classic. Now, what the lyrics are about … well, that’s debatable.
What songs keep your summer spirits up? Am I missing any that are must-haves when temperatures rise?
Memorial Day kicks off the start of sandals, swimsuits and surf (for the rest of the country … let’s be honest, that started four months ago in Florida). So, here are some of my favorite cocktail recipes to beat the heat with — little drink umbrella required.
“Cosmopolitan” Trendy Summer Drink
This was recently served at a friend’s going-away barbecue, and I couldn’t get enough. So light and refreshing!
- Orange, lemon or lime, cut into wheels
- 1 cup vodka
- 1 cup ginger ale
- 1 cup lemonade
- 1 cup light beer
- Add citrus wheels to a pitcher, then fill a third of it with ice.
- Add vodka, lemonade and ginger ale.
- Top with the beer.
Cherry Lemon Drop
My drink of choice this past weekend, this one will have you going back for seconds — and fifths!
- 1 lemon, cut into wedges
- 1 bottle cherry vodka
- 1 bottle lemonade
- Superfine sugar, on a small plate
- Rub lemon wedge around the rim around each glass. Put wedge aside.
- Roll rim of the glass in superfine sugar.
- Shake off excess sugar over sink or trash can.
- Mix 1 part cherry vodka, two parts lemonade in glass. Top drink with lemon wedge.
Your summer just isn’t complete without the Spanish-inspired flavors of sangria. Delicioso!
- 1 bottle of chilled red wine
- 1 lemon, cut into wedges
- 1 orange, cut into wedges
- 2 Tbsp. sugar
- 1 shot brandy
- 2 cups ginger ale or club soda
- Add ice to the pitcher first, and then pour wine into it.
- Squeeze the juice wedges from the lemon and orange into the wine.
- Toss in the fruit wedges (leaving out seeds if possible) and add sugar and brandy.
- Add ginger ale or club soda just before serving.