43 Things I’m Thankful For – The Non-Makeup Edition, 2007

Published in: Product Reviews

Yesterday, I did a post on 43 makeup-related things I’m thankful for. As much as I can go on and on about eye liner, there are other things in life that I also cherish. Here’s the non-makeup edition of my list.

43 Things I’m Thankful For

1. My family, especially my brother. We’re not as close as we used to be when we were younger, but we still share the same sense of weird humor and artistic spirit. Here’s a video of him in action at one of his shows. Warning: if you like easy listening music then this clip might be a little too much metal for you.


2. El Hub. I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my life, but one thing I did get right was marrying the coolest boy I ever met.

Me and El Hub on our wedding day.

3. Clear, crisp fall days perfect for an afternoon run.

4. All of the neighborhood dogs who stroll by my window while I’m writing. I love watching them walk by with their people in tow; they look like the happiest creatures on earth.


5. Showers. It’s strange, but I get my best ideas in the shower. I could just stay in there all day and think of wacky stuff to blog about. Sure, I’d be a waterlogged prune, but hey, creativity comes with a price.

At least I don’t have to cut off my ear.

6. Friends who make you laugh and who will hold your hand through anything and everything.

One of my best buds, Nblack.

7. Dancing. Dancing feeds my soul and always makes me feel closer to the powers-that-be. I love it.

8. Modern medicine and dentistry. It’s kind of a weird thing to be thankful for, I know. But last night I watched an episode of the HBO TV show, Rome, and one scene showed an ancient Roman guy getting operated on. The process included straps, a saw and a filthy kitchen table. I have only three words to convey how I feel about ancient medicinal practices: SO NOT COOL.


9. Sleep. Lots of it.

10. Opportunity.

11. Being healthy. Sure, I creak a little bit more than I used to, but for the most part everything works as it should. I cherish being able to work out, lift weights and go running, because I know that someday I won’t be able to anymore.

12. Music, especially songs that always make me cry, like Ave Maria.

13. The entire frozen foods section of Trader Joe’s.

14. My rock collection (aka small, portable reminders of happiness). I always keep a rock or two with me in my purse; they’re kind of like security blankets of happiness. On days when something special happens to me, I like to pick up a rock and add it to my rock collection. Right now the rock riding around with me is from Spain. I picked it up off the ground on top of a hill in the dry Spanish countryside on the day El Hub asked me to marry him.

15. Modern bathrooms, plumbing and toilet paper. Nuff’ said.

16. Dental floss.

17. The petite section at Banana Republic.

18. The Internets. Not only can one buy a purse on the Internet, you can also find a husband! Damn, that’s progress. How did people pass the time in their cubes back in the day? I can’t even imagine it.

The Lauren Merkin Bianca bag from Shopbop.com, aka too little sleep plus a coupon code for a hundred bucks off equals UH-OH!

19. MP3s.

20. The joy of writing. There are many things I can’t do, like calculus, woodworking or the dark arts. But one thing I can always count on is the ability to string a few words together to make myself laugh. I’m gonna ride this one for as long and as far as it will take me.

I wear this pin (by Wm Spear Design) every day.

21. The desire to learn. On the learning list so far for 2008: a martial art, fashion photography and acoustic guitar.

22. Finally paying off my car. The last payment goes down this Tuesday. It’s paid for, b*tches, WOOT!

23. The miraculous marriage of Tivo and reality television.

Looking for love in all the wrong places.

24. All of the books that changed my life: The Things They Carried (Tim O’Brien), The Toughest Indian in the World (Sherman Alexie), To Kill a Mockingbird (Harper Lee), The Sun Also Rises (Ernest Hemmingway) …

25. Coffee.

26. Cupcakes.

27. My day job.

28. Having access to clean drinking water.

29. Time.

30. Living relatively close to my parents. They are only an hour away, should they ever need me for an emergency.

31. Being able to appreciate the weird things that people do. Today, I saw two teenage boys at the bus stop dressed up in gorilla suits. It made me strangely happy.

32. The trees that line the street outside my window. I love the sound of their leaves crunching beneath my feet when I walk around outside in the fall.

33. Random acts of kindness.

34. Surfing without a wet suit.

Puta de Mita, Mexico.

35. Vacations.

36. Shoes that don’t hurt my feet.


37. Cheesy vampire and sci-fi movies.

38. Workout clothes that wick the sweat right off ya.

39. All things MAC…computers, that is. =)


40. Good allergy medicine.

41. Strawberry Frosted Pop Tarts.


42. The sound of El Hub’s snoring on a rainy, stormy night — loud, yet comforting.

43. Getting to know all the cool folks who read this blog!

What are you thankful for?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



Like this post? Tell your friends!

So far, 51 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Vanessa says:

    I enjoyed reading this…I am thankful for a lot of things as well, even the smallest things like seedless grapes I am thankful for! LOL.

  2. Liz says:

    Miss Karen, I’ve been reading you blog for quite some time now but I’ve never commented. I always want to post a short comment on how funny and witty you are. But gosh, every. single. entry. is just so fun to read. Which post should I comment on??? This one? Oh, this one was sooo funny too!!! Ah, they are all so great!!! Would it be too stalker-ish to tell you every day how much I love your blog???
    Your writing is so funny, warm, witty, and you are never, ever unnecessarily bitchy or mean-hearted, but you do know how to tell a girl what’s up (Miss New York!!! ahem!). Of course I’m a beauty addict so that’s why I initially starting reading your blog, but I’ve stayed for your writing. I’m a poor American living in Japan so I really don’t buy so many new beauty products lately, but a girl can dream, right? So, I reeeally like how you switch things up and throw in non-beauty related entries every now and then. I’m hooked!!!

    And so I finally decided to come out of the shadows because this post was the best post ever!! Gah! I hope you know that you are just too wonderful! Always so positive and upbeat! Ah, there’s my New Year’s resolution right there! And that picture of you and your husband is just so amazingly beautiful! Oooh! It got me all teary-eyed!!! Wonderful picture!

    Anyway, I really can’t tell you enough how much I love your blog, your writing, and you Miss Karen!!! I am really really thankful for you and your awesome blog! Thank you my dear Friendly Neighborhood Beauty Addict! Pure greatness!!!

  3. Rowena says:

    Oh this list is so sweet 🙂 I think it’s the hubby thing especially. Need to do my own list now…

    Oh I am grateful for a heater, my bed socks and digital technology.

  4. TUPRNUT says:

    What a great time to reflect. It sure puts life into perspective when you realize how blessed you are, huh?

    I’m thankful for my husband who just got back from Iraq… I’ve never been more thankful for him. I’m thankful for my daughter, Grace who constantly puts my life into perspective and makes me realize what’s really important.

    Oh, yes, of course… Philosophy’s When Hope Is Not Enough cream. Praise the Lord!

  5. Karen says:

    Hi Vanessa,

    I’m thankful for seedless grapes as well, especially the green ones! 🙂 Have a good week.

  6. Karen says:

    Hey Liz,

    Wow! Thank you for this lovely note. I’m glad that this blog can be a part of your day and that you enjoy it. You really made my morning! 🙂

    That’s so awesome that you live abroad. You are living a dream that so many of us have!

    Enjoy your week and keep smiling!

  7. Karen says:

    Rowena, I feel ya on the heater! I’m a spoiled California weather brat and I so can’t hang with the cold weather. (No snow for me!)

    Have fun doing your list! I’m looking forward to reading it. 🙂

  8. Karen says:

    Hi Tuprnut,

    How wonderful that you have your hubby back home safe and sound for the holidays. I hope your family gets to spend lots of time together just doing the everyday stuff that means so much. Your daughter, Grace, sounds like a joy, too!

    And Philosophy skincare ROCKS! I haven’t tried When Hope is Not Enough but I’ll pop that one on my ever-growing list of products to try.

    Take care and have a good week. 🙂

  9. Megan says:

    Karen I sometimes write little short blogs that I post on my myspace page and the other day I posted this: I’m thankful that I’m not a pilgrim and we have cars, electricity…and I can vote, wear pants, have a job and do whatever I want.
    As much as adult life and responsibility can suck…it would suck worse if I was under a burkha and couldn’t go out without a male family member…really…have you met the men in my family? Pure torture…I wouldn’t make it.
    I’m also thankful for my new pink truffle quad eyeshadow that I scored at the Clinique counter the other day. Seriously…it’s made my week.
    What are you thankful for?

    LOL anyway… Definitely thankful for the friends and family. BUT also thankful to be away from the family after a long harrowing extended weekend with them. 🙂

  10. Laurie T says:

    Blast you, Karen. Now I’m hooked on 43 Things too. Why haven’t I heard of that site before? I need to get out more.

  11. Megan says:

    By the way Karen… I was away for the holiday and I came back late on Sat. Yesterday I realized that I left my makeup bag in the car when I got home…So I was headed out and just decided to put my make up on when I got in the car. So I decided to give lash blast another try and the tube was cold…as it’s cold over here and it worked better cold… LOL…I wore it all by itself and love it. It really thickened better. So maybe I just need to leave it in my car throughout the winter and put it on cold… LOL… did you snag a tube yet?

  12. kia says:

    awww no fair karen! nblack gets a mug shot and not el hub? i guess he’ll remain faceless? beautiful pic anyway =)

    ave maria makes you cry? awww i’m sure i’ll cry over it too once i’m married. for now, the version by kelly price makes my eyes well up and makes me hope for a beautiful love especially during the holidays. it’s my favorite song during this time.

    woot! congrats on the car payment!! yeh!

    oh.. yes i’m grateful for good allergy meds too.. what kind are you on? lol

  13. Aww, this entry really made me happy. Such genuine thoughts. I’m lovin’ it.

  14. Glosslizard says:

    What an inspiring post! It makes me think….

    I’m thankful for my husband, marrying him was one of the two best decisions I ever made! I’m thankful for my seldom-mentioned (on beauty blogs… not in the rest of my life…) but wonderful two young sons and also my beloved cats! I’m thankful for contact lenses and modern dentistry, and the ready availability of really good chocolate! I’m thankful for Chanel which gives me something to look forward to, and Stila (and MAC, Smashbox, etc.) which give me something to put on my face in the meantime! 😉 I’m thankful for aikido, which keeps me feeling young and in shape and has given me some wonderful friends, and last, but not least, I’m thankful for beauty blogs (especially you, Karen, because you are my absolute fave!) which have given me an outlet for my glamorous leanings and made me feel less alone in my passion for fabulousness! Thanks to y’all!

  15. Apple Diva says:

    Girrrrl, your husband is too fine LOL.

    I am thankful for Leopard, but I have not figured out the 500 features.

  16. Irene says:

    I agree with Apple Diva on Leopard and it’s one million features that I haven’t figured out and utilized yet. One thing about it sucks though: iMovie ’08 is a total DEGRADE from imovie ’06. Boo!

    That was such a sweet list. I am thankful I had enough savings to buy a whole new MAC ’cause my old one got stolen after 3 months of buying it. ='(

  17. Vera says:

    Congrats on the car payment. I just finished paying mine off this month too! It’s such a satisfying feeling. =D

  18. NBLACK says:

    The 4 is yours all yours!!! Your so funny I forgot we took that picture.

    You forgot to put David Hasellhoff(I know there are two f’s) or Burt “Big Stache” Reynolds on your list.

    Besides 33 cars I would have to put on my list, you are certainly on there.

  19. Karen says:

    Hi Megan,

    I love you blog post, so funny and cute. I’m agree with you on all counts (especially the pants and the electricity!) And woo hoo, the Clinique Pink Truffle Quad! How have you worn it so far?

    Hope your week is off to a good start, girl! 🙂

  20. Karen says:

    Hey Laurie,

    Isn’t 43 things an interesting site? You should start your own list!

  21. Karen says:

    Megan, No Lash Blast tube … YET!

    That’s interesting how the temp made the product perform differently. Maybe you can keep it in your fridge!

  22. Karen says:

    Hey Kia!

    El Hub is camera shy, LOL! I guess he’s like this blog’s Mr. Big!

    Oh boy, allergy medicine. Remember the days when all we had was Benadryl?! Awful! I’d be asleep through half my day OR miserable. These days I take Zyrtec in the spring and use an asthma inhaler in the fall. Thank you, modern medicine! When are your allergies bad?

    Now I’ll have to find the Kelly Price version of Ave Maria!

  23. Karen says:

    Thanks Divine Blackness. 🙂 Have a good week!

  24. Karen says:

    Glosslizard, I love your list! (You’re a mommy, wow! We learn something new about each other every day.) OH, and I agree – many thanks for chocolate and contact lenses.

    Have a grrrrreat Tuesday, girl! 🙂

  25. Karen says:

    Apple Diva!

    Yeah, El Hub is camera shy, LOL!

    We are upgrading computers at work this month…can’t wait to get Leopard!

  26. Karen says:

    Hi Irene,

    So sorry about your MAC getting stolen! Boo hoo 🙁 I’m glad that you were able to get a new one though. (Having savings = a good thing.)

    I rarely ever use iMovie ’06 because it’s too much program for me. I can’t wait for the ’08 version because I think it’ll be just enough for me to handle.

    Hope you make it back to SF soon!

  27. Karen says:

    Vera, congrats! 🙂

  28. Karen says:

    NBLACK, don’t forget, you’ll need room on that list for butter, fried food, Car Craft magazine … I know you so well, it’s SCARY!

  29. the Muse says:


    That post was fantastic!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Bravo 🙂

    Loved it!

    Off to read the makeup edition!

  30. Karen says:

    Thanks Muse! 🙂 I’m glad you enjoyed it.

    Have a great week, girl!

  31. kia says:

    Zyrtec D all the way baby! whenever the seasons flare the allergies are really bad, but sinuses are horrible (year round) depending on the diet.. the doc won’t tell me that, but i know. (Zyrtec before icecream? lol)

  32. Karen says:

    Oh yeah, so true! Zyrtec RULES! I hate it when they get so bad that even Zyrtec doesn’t even help. Have you ever used Zicam nasal spray? It works wonders when my nose is super stuffy.

  33. Megan says:

    So maybe there’s more to our obsession with make up than meets the eye. I’m a Zyrtec D year round girl too. When the zyrtec D is not enough… i hit the flonase, ayr saline, and a homeopathic inhalant that’s like menthol and lemon… LOL… hmmm maybe zyrtec makes us like makeup…

  34. Karen says:

    OHHHH Flonase, I forgot. Good stuff! That’s my savior too.

    One thing I can’t stand is Claritin. It does nothing for me.

  35. Megan says:

    LOL… me either… actually I first took claritin in high school and my mom took me off it… because it didn’t help at all…and on top of that…it seemed to make me hyper.

  36. Mrs. Lynne says:

    I didn’t even finish your list… actually stopped at #2 and scrolled down to comment! Your wedding picture is so precious and I can already feel the tears forming remembering the moment hubbo and I sealed the deal. Definitely thankful for that. Ok, I’ll go back to reading now, lol.

  37. Mrs. Lynne says:

    Ok, just finished! I wish I was back in CA. I’d love to meet you because I think we’d get along so well, lol. Although, we’d have to stay away from the MAC because I have a feeling if we went in there together, that Armageddon might win our checkbooks. But I love your list and that even the smallest things are so meaningful. Right on!

  38. Karen says:

    Hey Megan,

    Dang, I’m starting to suspect that allergy meds are directly proportional to makeup obsession. 😉

    That’s weird that it made you hyper! When I was in high school (aka DARK AGES) the only thing available was Benadryl. I totally remember falling asleep in geometry class and telling my teacher that it really wasn’t my fault, it was the allergy meds! He made me go out in the hall to do jumping jacks to wake myself up, lol.

  39. Karen says:

    Awww, Mrs. Lynne! I’m glad the list resonanted with you! You are so cute. I’m very sentimental too, especially when the wedding day memories come back.

    I totally think we’d get along too. No MAC store for us though, that’s for sure. Well, maybe a very controlled visit to the Pro Store, with a set amount of cash and NO credit cards, LOL! Then lunch afterwards at Korean barbeque. 🙂

  40. Mrs. Lynne says:

    Sentimental – that’s definitely the word I need to start using more. I keep saying emotional and I’m starting to think I need help, lol.

    I think us meeting would be fun! I always have to have a controlled visit whenever I go into MAC. Although no matter what I buy Hubbo is like clockwork asking, “how much did you spend?” EVERY SINGLE TIME, LOLOLOL.

    Mmmm… meat jun. Once you’ve tried, then I have a funny story to tell you about how I tried looking for it here in our restaurants.

  41. Jeni says:

    Youre so cute!

  42. Karen says:

    Sentimental is a wonderful thing to be, Mrs. Lynne!

    LOL, El Hub has learned to just turn his head. I’m so pissed that he claims he’s not buying me any makeup for Christmas! Boo!

    Meat jun…I’ll ask the boy what that is! It kinda sounds scary.

  43. Karen says:

    Thanks Jeni! Have a good weekend. 🙂

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