9 Things: Simple Pleasures (Summer and Otherwise)

Published in: Just For Fun

You know what they say, right? “It’s the simple things.” The simple pleasures, like sleeping in, an ice-cold Coca Cola on a hot day, a new tube of lipstick, a good hair day, a tender kiss, a comforting smile, a good hug, a stranger holding open the door, a few words of encouragement.


What are some of the simple pleasures you’ve been enjoying lately? Here are some of mine, in no particular order.

I can’t wait to hear yours. πŸ™‚

1. Lounging by the pool

My favorite part of last weekend wasn’t the plate of killer fries I had with that delicious veggie burger at the mall (although it was delicious). Nope, last weekend nirvana took the shape of my bum parked in a lounge chair by the neighborhood pool.

And I didn’t do any web surfing, blogging, tweeting or texting at all while I was there. Instead, I resisted the urge to plug in and just tried to focus on my thoughts for a while.

It was nice.

2. Going for a walk with Tabs

El jefe insists that I take him for a walk around the complex first thing every morning so that he may survey his vast domain. Thankfully, he usually allows me to finish a cup of coffee first (milk and sugar, please!).

I actually really enjoy it, especially now that it’s warm, and I can go out in shorts, a tank top and flip-flops. Tabs, of course, typically wears his usual business casual attire.

3. Homemade smoothies

They’re easy to make with the help of a blender or food processor, and so much cheaper than Jamba Juice (which I love!). I usually go with whatever fresh fruit I have on hand. This week’s receipe calls for strawberries, bananas, honey-flavored Greek yogurt, orange juice and ice, yum!

I like to have one right after a run as my post-workout recovery drink. They’re great for a quick shot of carbs and protein to keep the muscle soreness at bay, and I think they’re also easy on my stomach.

4. Seeing pics of pets with EvRev

Don’t tell Tabs, but I have a crush on Wally (he lives with MBB reader Alka)

Every time I open an email with a pic of a furry friend posing with a tube of MAC Evolution Revolution Lipglass, I do a little dance in my chair. πŸ™‚

Ted the dog hearts Stef!

It looks like EvRev is sold out on the MAC website now, but if you’re still interested in bringing it home, I’m told that MAC plans to release more inventory of all of the products in the collection soon.

5. Cooking with seasonal, summer produce

I’m not a vegetarian, but I do eat like one some of the time, especially in summer, when there are so many great seasonal fruits and veggies on sale.

For lunch today I had a homemade pasta dish with a yummy avocado sauce. It’s loaded with strong flavors like lemon, garlic and basil, and it actually took less than 15 minutes to make (here’s the recipe I used).

6. An evening concert starring the neighborhood songbirds

The old oak tree outside has some great entertainment at night (and no cover charge!). Every night when the sun sets, the songbirds arrive and fill the hillside with music. Sometimes I’ll listen to them from the deck with Tabs.

7. Finding random pictures of yourself making weird faces…

…and sharing them with the world on the Internet.

8. Playing “Fill Up the Shopping Cart” at Lulus.com

Most of the time I empty it without going through checkout (but half the fun is in just filling the cart).

I’m so obsessed with Lulus right now… They have some super cute dresses and accessories from tons of different brands, plus some great prices and lightning fast shipping, too. LOVE!

9. Wearing sparkly statement rings

They’re a fun, simple way to dress up a summer wardrobe. That, and they draw extra attention to a cute manicure. πŸ™‚

So how about you? What are some of the simple pleasures you’ve recently enjoyed?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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  1. Cassy says:

    Lol, Ted is cracking me up. So cute. I think my simple pleasure has been just soaking in summer during my lunch breaks at work. It’s 30 minutes of amazing.

  2. Megan says:

    Quick question. Is EvRev more of a nude peach or a coral peach? I have been considering picking it up, but corals just don’t look the best on me. Plus I have to order MAC online. I ordered MAC Tinted Lipglass in Pink Lemonade expecting a hot pink, and received a bright orange that looks awful on. I have learned to be more cautious about my orders… what is your take on it?

  3. Lo says:

    Oh my gosh, those pet pics are all kinds of awesome… Ted is a major cutie!
    My simple pleasures are fresh watermelon (WITH seeds!), Adele, iced green tea, and good skin/makeup days, which are hard to come by when it’s constantly 95 degrees and insane humidity.

    • Karen says:

      With seeds?! Props, lady. I’ve been eating the seedless ones lately and now I don’t know if I can ever go back to the seeded variety!

  4. Larie says:

    A nice cup of green tea, fresh berries, cozying up with the boy for a good movie, taking a walk along the lake in the warm summer weather…there are lots of simple pleasures to be had! πŸ™‚
    Larie recently posted … Dior Vernis 908 Tuxedo

  5. Leslie says:

    I agree with the cold coca cola on a hot day and lounging at the pool. Also, on my list would be
    a fresh, pretty manicure
    ensconced on my couch watching a period drama
    reading a good book
    anticipating a new purchase arriving soon in the mail (2 Evolution Revolution’s!)
    hanging with my family
    meeting a friend for lunch
    and in this heat, air conditioning!

    • Karen says:

      Hey Leslie,

      Can’t wait for you to get your tubes of EvRev. Oh, and you’re so right — I’m really, REALLY loving air conditioning. It’s all kinds of awesome.

  6. Kate & Zena says:

    OMG, Karen! I think this is the first 9 Simple Pleasures without Nutella! The world is ending! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

    9 Simple Pleasures: The Katie Version:
    1. Honey Mini Teddy Grahams. Um, I’ve eaten three bags. I’ve never been a graham cracker person, but I can’t stop eating these cute teddy graham crackers!

    2. Warm, Barely Windy and Barely Humid Days. These days are rare here in the Midwest, so I treasure them immensely. It was 75 with 40% humidity with 8 mph winds today. The wind here sweeps the humidity around, making it worse. I love summer, but not here!

    3. Finishing a Good Book, even if it has a sad ending. I cried like a baby, but The Book Thief is AMAZING.

    4. Eating Push-Up Pops on hot days, especially the Cherry and Grape ones. I love ’em.

    5. Baking a dessert that everyone loves. It may be too bitter for me (and needs a bit more whipping), but they all love chocolate mousse!

    6. Brushing out Zena. She’s moves around while I do it, but brushing her is so calming.

    7. Watching Pixiwoo videos! I always learn something new from them (not to mention they’re beautiful, intelligent and so funny!)

    8. Going to the gardens. I love looking at all the flowers and all the different kinds of gardens at the botanic gardens near my house.

    9. Taking pictures. I like taking pictures, but it’s a lot harder than it looks!

    • Karen says:

      Those Teddy Grahams are THE BEST. Have you had the chocolate ones? Those are pretty tasty, too.

      Hugs to Z for me. πŸ™‚

      • Kate & Zena says:

        I haven’t; I tend to like things plain (I don’t have a wild palate. Don’t take me out for Thai, Chinese, Seafood, Japanese because I won’t be able to eat anything. Try IHOP, Olive Garden, Fazolis, Sbarro, Burger King, Pizza Hut, or any place that’ll make a grilled cheese, spaghetti with no sauce or has bread/breadsticks.) I tried the Cinnamon ones and I hated them. I love decapitating them before I eat the rest of their bodies. πŸ™‚ I think I have a bit of a morbidity streak.

        Zena groans back. She hates being disturbed in her sleep. She gave me the Death Glare. If looks could kill….

        • Karen says:

          The chocolate ones aren’t too wild. πŸ™‚ So delicious with a tall glass of milk.

          And haha — I do the same thing with the heads. Sometimes I’ll eat the legs first to switch it up.

  7. Megan says:

    Ooo…I love lists. Simple pleasure, listmaking.

    Also…having my cat crawl into my lap to snuggle…the perfectly done manicure…peeling a grapefruit just for the fun of peeling. Dried cherries (so tart and sweet!)…a summer sunset over my backyard pond.

    Getting to adopt out a kitty on my shelter shifts. πŸ™‚

  8. Samantha says:

    Here are my 9 simple pleasures, and I’ve really learned to appreciate in this hard time in my life.

    1. Cuddling with my little girl, Cleo – She’s my Egyptian Mau kitten, and although she’s incredibly sassy at times, it’s those times when she’s really loving and I get to pet her that can help me through just about anything and calm me down

    2. Taking pictures with your friends in those photobooth things – without a doubt, these always are a blast to do and come out hilarious. I don’t care how bad quality the pictures are or how bad of a rip off they are, I truly enjoy them! Whenever I’m feeling lonely I whip some out of my wallet, or the visor in the car, and smile about those wonderful people.

    3. My newly started beauty blog – I just started this up on the 4th, and I can already tell that it is an awesome release for me. I love just getting away to write and spend some time with some great beauty products. I aspire to have a blog as amazing as yours!

    4. Baths – Oh dear bath tub, where would I be without you? Really though… I LOVE YOU!

    5. Random words of kindness – it always makes my heart flutter when I hear a random ‘I love you’ from a friend or any type of compliment from anyone. It’s a sure way to put a smile on my face!

    6. Focusing on what I DO have, rather than what I don’t – When I get down, like lately, I like to think of all the things that I have to be happy about and then it seems really petty as to why I’m down. I’ve got all the necessities, a roof over my head, safety, food, some loving friends… and that is all I really need.

    7. Nutella – I swear this stuff can take stress away from life… really!

    8. Clean sheets – I don’t know what it is, but after I wash my bedspread and sheets, it is just sooo relaxing. And if I time my dryer right, there is nothing like cuddling in a warm bed that smells amazing!

    9. The power of a good perfume – I swear spritzing on a well loved perfume can lift your spirits and multiply your confidence!

  9. Heidi says:

    Fun! Here are my simple pleasures in no particular order:

    1) Watching Missy play
    2) Listening to great music. My taste is so varied — lately it’s been Bob Marley for me. That just says “summer” to me
    3) The power of a great lipgloss. I gave my best girlfriend Mary Ev Rev last time I saw her, so now we’ve got Marin and Sonoma County well represented with Ev Rev!
    4) My latest cold treat obsession: Coconut Water Sorbet in the Lemonade flavor. SOOOOO yummy!
    5) Listening to birds singing outside, as long as it’s not blue jays or crows squacking!
    6) Watching a great movie that I’ve seen a million times and know all the great lines from, such as Legally Blonde or The Wedding Singer.
    7) Encountering strangers who are thoughtful and aware of other people in their surroundings. Not easy to come by in this day and age of people walking around chained to their cell phones!
    8) Finding something you’ve been looking for on sale!
    9) Watching the waves crashing in the ocean.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Heidi,

      How funny! I’ve been listening to Legend a lot lately. I think it’s because I watched I am Legend last Friday… nothing like a good ol’ fashioned vampire apocalypse movie to kick off a long weekend, LOL.

      And, yay! I love the thought of Ev Rev sparkling throughout Marin and Sonoma. πŸ˜€ I hope Mary likes it.

  10. I love your list! I enjoy many of the same things. I’m trying to cook more, and make things that are vegetarian but that my carnivore BF will still like. That avocado pasta looks delish!
    Marilyn @ Lipgloss and Spandex recently posted … RACE RECAP: Seattle Rock and Roll Marathon

    • Karen says:

      It’s really, really good. I doubled the garlic because I heart garlic. I also added a little bit more lemon (about a fourth) and upped the basil. So tasty!

  11. Mica says:

    I HEART your bistro table! That pasta recipe looks great too – will have to try it out. Do you get your produce at a farmer’s market? Here is NY the local produce is *just* starting to come in – I get waay too excited on Sat. mornings!

  12. Kim says:

    Oh, Wally is Tabs Light! A few more years and a few cans of Fancy Feast and Tabs might have a doppelganger! πŸ™‚

    Most recent simple pleasures for me (starting with the most recent first):

    1. Checking out the new MBB posts!! πŸ™‚
    2. Peeling the wax off a Baby Bell cheese. Reminds me of my youth and how we loved to play with that wax!
    3. Looking at this great new package that a brilliant girl in our art dept created for me. So bright and happy.
    4. Looking at the lake on a beautiful, sunny day.
    5. Watching the boys ride their bikes. They are getting so big. πŸ™‚
    6. Looking back at the house when we leave; the flowers really look nice.
    7. Coming down to a clean kitchen in the AM (hate the cleaning at night, but it’s worth it).
    8. My air conditioner which allows me to keep my flannel sheets and down comforter on the bed year round. Cozy!
    9. Sleep. πŸ™‚

    • Karen says:

      Aww, Kim. You are the best. πŸ™‚

      As for Wally the charmer, yes, give him a few cans of gravy and a low-hanging belly and he’d be Tabs’ twin! I posted the pic on twitter yesterday and my friend asked if he was Tabs’ new brother — I wish! I’d love to have two tabbies; they’d be like matching bookends.

      And AMEN to sleep!

      • Kim says:

        That would be awesome! I love when new people come to our house because they think we have a magic cat (every time I turn, that gray cat is RIGHT THERE). They actually seem more freaked when we say there are really three of them. HAHA!

        And you know I really enjoy visiting the blog. I can always count on you for excellent writing and a happy, positive vibe. A definite bright spot. πŸ™‚

      • Alka says:

        Funny….Wally used to weigh about twice as much and had the belly to boot but when he turned 10 he just naturally slimmed down to a trim 8lbs. Of course he will happily down can after can of yummy gravy. The resemblance between Tabs and Wally is what first brought me to the MBB site but of course the awesome-ness of the blog is what keeps me coming back.

  13. Nina says:

    oh i love your post! πŸ™‚

    1 – sitting at my comfy chair in our deck right when i get home – its an awesome way to decompress!

    2 – late night walks – it helps that its still light out by 8 pm!

    3 – watermelon! well, essentially all great summer fruit.

    4 – target – when it gets too hot, i just pop in and browse.

    5 – furkids purring on my lap. always a winner.

    6 – holding hands.

    7 – outdoor dining, outdoor cups of tea or coffee.

    8 – lemonade, iced tea, anything cold to drink.

    9 – shorts, flipflops, tank tops, short skirts.

    • Karen says:

      Don’t laugh, but I am on my third watermelon in less than a week. Er, and El Hub hasn’t been helping me eat ’em.

      • Nina says:

        gurrllll — we wiped out 2 huge ones from Costco over the weekend.

        im going to make a Costco run during my lunch hour tomorrow to get more. its the perfect summer food!

  14. Shannon says:

    1) Slow mornings accompanied by a cup of coffee. Preferably from a French Press. πŸ™‚

    2) Walking to work in the morning. It’s so pretty with the trees in full bloom, the smell of cut grass in the air, and the sun not-quite-peeking over the mountain. The slight chill just before the sun officially shows its face is so refreshing. It’s such an awesome start to a day when I take time to pay attention and enjoy it!

    3) Reading with my husband. It’s nice to just be together with him, even when we’re not talking.

    4) Moisturizing my cuticles. It’s like a very tiny spa experience that I can have anywhere I like. πŸ™‚

    5) Realizing you have tan lines: from flip flops, tank tops, or your wedding ring.

    6) Water. Drinking it, being in it, looking at it… all of those things, especially in the summer, are just AWESOME.

    7) Having a cold, tasty, local beer on a hot afternoon πŸ™‚

    8) Being able to wear shorts and skirts!

    9) Sporting sunglasses. Mine make me feel pretty freakin’ glamorous. πŸ™‚

    There’s my list! I’m sure it would be pretty easy to add more things, too. It’s nice to sit back and take notice of what you appreciate every once in a while! Thanks, Karen πŸ™‚

  15. April says:

    My simple pleasures:

    1. Having a wonderful hair day!!! Love after a fresh wash and cut how it moves and just blows in the wind.

    2. Talking to my best friend, everyday and everyday laughing about something new. Laughter is good for the soul.

    3. Being in love. Love being in love, the feel of the natural glow that’s on your face when you love someone and know that they love you back.

    4. Finding a cute pair of shoes on sale.. Who can ever resist a good sale.

    5. Getting that one phone call or text message, that immediately puts a smile on your face.

    These are some of my simple pleasures, thank you posting this, sometimes I have to be reminded about the simple things in life, especially when things become so complicated.


  16. Alka says:

    OMG!!! My sweet Wally is on the internet!!! I still can’t believe it. Thanks for posting our pic. πŸ™‚ BTW I LOVE my tube of EvRev. Currently wearing it EVERY SINGLE DAY!

  17. Stef says:

    Ted is the Notorious LGE (lip glass eater!) But don’t worry, no EvRev’s were harmed in the making of this comic. Thanks for sharing his pic Karen!
    Stef recently posted … DIY: Feathered Shoulder Shirt

  18. morrigan says:

    Omg Ted is a Boston!!!!! <3 just like my Mr. Smeagol, this post *and pic* made my day ! πŸ™‚

  19. Amy Hughes says:

    I guess my simple pleasures would have to be walking my pug, Piggy and taking a nice, warm bath at the end of the day. It really helps me unwind and gives a few minutes of peace and quiet before I go to bed… And I suppose I should include web surfing all the beauty sites I can looking for something new and exciting… By the way, I love Evolution Revolution! Perfect color and shimmer… πŸ™‚

  20. Moni says:

    I bought EvRev like a week or two ago and I’m sad to report that my lips have a sensitivity to the ingredients and my lips peel from it. πŸ™

    I hadn’t tried lipglasses in years so I didn’t know… So apparently I am now sensitive/allergic to lipglass. Then again, I had the same reaction to Sephora lipgloss, and mint and basil and rosemary… πŸ™ πŸ™

    I’m sad that I have to return a LE item now, what a waste!

  21. Cloudburst says:

    My summer pleasures:

    1. Enjoying the long, long days of sunlight. Here it can stay light out until 10 or 11 at night.

    2. Going for long runs in the river valley in the evening when it starts to cool off.

    3. BBQ’s with friends and still around the fire pit drinking beer and chatting.

    4. Thunderstorms at night. Feeling the heat of the day dissipate with the rain and clouds.

    5. Wearing tank tops!

    6. Going for long walks with the bf.

    7. Having salad dinners with hard boiled eggs and canned salmon.

    8. Iced tea, frozen yogurt and Blizzards!

    9. Last but not least getting out to climb or boulder. True love.

  22. NeenaJ says:

    OMG, Karen! That pasta is life-changing! I made it last night for dinner. Unbelievably good.

  23. Katie says:

    LOL – #8….I do that at Sephora.com, just to see how much EVERYTHING I want adds up to. I usually half-fall over from the price, and then remove everything from my shopping cart. πŸ˜€

  24. artemis says:

    ted is such a cute and funny doggie <3 πŸ˜€ love the kittens too

  25. Eleonora says:

    Oh my, Karen! I have the same exact little plant you have (last pic) LOL

  26. Kayleigh says:

    LOL! I totally play fill up the shopping cart online!! It’s like window shopping from the comfort of your own home!! I pretend I’ve just won the lottery, and I’m buying every single thing my heart desires!

  27. jenn s. says:

    My most recent simple pleasure involved sitting in my Adirondack chair in the backyard watching my two sweet golden retrievers play a game of chase and tag. I swear they know the rules of tag! We are also serenaded from time to time by a whipporwil (sp?) and an great horned owl. Ahhh, life is so glorious when it’s simple.

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