Mighty Life List
Dec 29 2015

Men Explain Things to Me


Do works about equality and social justice make you so sad and pissed off? It’s so hard to power through, and it’s all I can think about for weeks after. Still, this was worth reading. It’s always nice to have facts confirm your suspicions about weird elements of your life.

The best parts of Men Explain Things to Me by Rebecca Solnit:

“Women’s liberation has often been portrayed as a movement intent on encroaching upon or taking power and privilege away from men, as though in some dismal zero-sum game, only one gender at a time could be free and powerful.”

“Credibility is a basic survival tool.”

“A woman is beaten every nine seconds in the country. Just to be clear: not nine minutes, but nine seconds. It’s the number one cause of injury to American women…”

“In 1990, the Journal of the American Medical Association reported, ‘studies of the Surgeon General’s office reveal that domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women between the ages of fifteen and forty-four, more common than automobile accidents, muggings, and cancer deaths combined.'”

“the confrontational confidence of the totally ignorant”

“Clearly the ready availability of guns is a huge problem in the United States, but despite this availability to everyone, murder is still a crime committed by men 90 percent of the time.”

“billions of women… being told that they are not reliable witnesses to their own lives”


Carbuncle a severe abscess or multiple boils in the skin, typically infected with staphylococcus bacteria.

Eve-teasing a euphemism used throughout South Asia for public sexual harassment or molestation (often known as “street harassment”) of women by men, where Eve alludes to the very first woman, according to the Biblical creation story.

antediluvian of or belonging to the time before the biblical Flood, or an idea that is ridiculously old fashioned.

Any other feminist works you’d recommend? I want an updated Backlash.

Dec 25 2015

Our Family Card


Brad is a Photoshop wizard. Here’s to 2016!

Dec 21 2015

Advent Grab Bags IntraHealth Donation


If you bought an Advent Grab Bag this year, thank you so much!

As you know, our plan was to donate 20 percent of the profit in hopes of providing two one-year scholarships for nurses training with IntraHealth International.

Thanks to you, we hit our goal and then some! In fact, we’re 20 percent over our goal, and we’re sending our donation to IntraHealth today. YEEEAAAH.

Thank you also for the notes, and Instagrams, and Facebooks about how much your love your kits. It makes us all smiley.

If you’d like to be notified via email when kits go on sale next year, you can sign up here. We won’t send you other stuff, just this:

* indicates required

Dec 17 2015

The Clasp by Sloane Crosley


I’m conflicted about this book, have you read it? Because let’s discuss.

The Clasp is the first book I’ve read by Sloane Crosley, and she has such a talent for observation and detail that I’m now going to read everything else she’s written. And I can’t wait.

That said, the momentum and my character investment waned so abruptly that I didn’t even bother to finish the last seventy-two pages. I was 300 pages in when all the air went out of my tires, so I just skimmed to the end. Wehhhhhhh.

Have you ever had sex with someone you’ve built up in your mind, and it’s electric at first, but then he does his thing and rolls over to sleep? This book was like that.

Still, that electric part though. My favorite parts of The Clasp:

“The groomsmen’s jackets had come off. The women had grown shorter over the course of the evening.”

“Inside, Meredith’s husband, Michael, was wearing mint-green drawstring pants and opening a bag of frozen shrimp with a corkscrew.”

“She hated Los Angeles as a concept, but she also hated it on a personal level… Kezia had been told, by people trying to befriend her, that she should inject stroke medication into her forehead, how many calories were in her meal, which stylist had dropped a bracelt down the toilet, how to minimize undereye bags, all leading a few drinks later, to stories of molesting uncles and first loves who had perished in car accidents. ‘Anyway, should we split the burrata?'”

“He had reflexively touched her when she offered to show him her pirouette, last performed when she was seven years old and executed with all the grace of a human that age. He caught her in his arms before she fell headlong into a bamboo chair. She did not scramble to remove her weight but stayed limp, as if he had dipped her. Women had used this tactic with him before. Generally it took the form of drunken cartwheels in his living room or hand slapping games he did not want to learn. He know what they were doing. They were aiming for charm but missing the mark; their actions seemed to say, ‘I have the carefree joy of a prepubescent girl. So please fuck me.'”

So you see what I mean about talent. There was more. You should really read the first half of this book, guys.


Raynaud’s phenomenon is excessively reduced blood flow in response to cold or emotional stress, causing discoloration of the fingers, toes, and occasionally other areas.

U-bet chocolate syrup

An alcove studio is the same as a studio apartment with an additional space off the living room.

slitchiness This was a weird one, I think she means the sound of voluminous women’s clothing in motion, but the only ref I could find for slitchy was as a slang term meaning bitchy or slutty.

solopsism (a word I should know by now) the view or theory that the self is all that can be known to exist

Okay! Have you read it or any of Crosley’s other stuff? Tell me your things.

P.S. If you’re on Goodreads, I am also on Goodreads. Nerd party!

Dec 15 2015

Gift Guide: Classic Gifts for Women

The upside to buying gifts for women is that many of us hesitate before buying items we want, especially if we feel they are extravagant. We’re getting better at that, but in the meantime you can take advantage of our reserve.


Pride and Prejudice Penguin Drop Cap Classic, $15

All right. You have to know what you’re doing, we’re building a library here. Maybe she’s an Austen fan, but maybe she’s all about The Joy Luck Club, or Madame Bovary (lucky you). The point being, you’ll want to know what she reads before you commit her to the perfect hardcover copy. And if books are what she loves, unconditionally, the entire set of Penguin Drop Cap Classics is a modest $488. The Precious.


Creme de Corps body lotion, $18

Skip Bath & BodyWorks. If you want to get her something that makes her feel lovely, Kiehl’s is a solid choice. Unless she has a specific request, avoid products that prevent aging. That is not a gift, my friend, that is an insecurity egg waiting to hatch. Focus on simple products that make her skin soft, like their Kiehls Hydration Essentials kit, $29.




Cashmere Sweater, $188

Speaking of soft. What’s kinder than her favorite sweatshirt? This. This is a major sweatshirt upgrade. And if she already has the sweater, consider upgrading her sweatpants instead — cashmere sweatpants, $210. Glorious.




veuve clicquot champagne

NV Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label, $65

This is a happy bottle of champagne. If you’d prefer an ecstatic bottle of champagne, go 2006 Dom Perignon Champagne, $195.



Mr. Bubble

Mr. Bubble Original Bubble Bath, $10
Nostalgia play. Up your game with a Monogrammed Terry Cloth Robe, $95 (on sale).

gold circle studs

Circle Studs, $74 These are a key update on the gold hoop, a pair of earrings she’ll never need to remove.


Tung Ting Red Blossom Tea

Tung Ting Mi Xiang Tea, $25

If the lady in question is a tea drinker, like me, Red Blossom offers very high quality teas. My favorite is the Tung Ting, Mi Xiang. Alternately, it’s pretty to watch the Organic Dragon Pearl Jasmine ($13) unfurl in hot water.


jcrew womens pajama
Vintage Short-Sleeve Pajama, $85

For whatever reason, it can seem silly to splurge on cute pajamas for yourself. Still, every woman needs a pair she can wear when she’s spending Christmas with your parents, or eating waffles at the vacation place you’re sharing with nine other couples.



Key Lime Pears
Key Lime Pears, $23
Chocolate is a cliché for a reason. These are crispy, freeze-dried pears coated in dark chocolate and scented with lime. If you’re trying to marry her, consider the aptly named Faves Gift Box, $125.


Triple Cream Brie Cowgirl Creamery
Cowgirl Creamery Mt. Tam Triple Cream Brie Package, $40
Cheese is the gift that says, “Your ass continues to look amazing in those jeans.” This particular cheese is unctuous and coy. It will get you laid. And if you’d like to keep a good thing going, you can sign her up for a cheese club ($225-$695), or just opt for a more ample gift pack.


Dec 14 2015

Aloe Free Baby Diapers, Wipes, and Rash Cream

Parenting thing! Putting this here because it was a bear for me to find baby stuff that does not contain Aloe Barbadensis.

Brad gets a severe, burning rash when his skin is exposed to Aloe, and it’s in almost everything you put on or near a baby’s skin. As of December 2015, these are the brands we use that currently do not contain Aloe. If you have some to add to this list, please let us know in comments.


Huggies Little Snugglers Diapers If you’re just realizing your kiddo might have a reaction to Aloe because rash creams are making things worse, and so forth, Huggies Little Movers also don’t contain Aloe.


Pampers Softcare Baby Fresh Wipes don’t currently contain Aloe. But! Their “Sensitive” wipes do. This is true of nearly all brands marked “sensitive” or “natural.”


Boudreaux’s Butt Paste has no Aloe, and it’s terrific.

Anyway, apparently it’s not a common allergy, but if your kid has a rash that won’t go away, even if you’re blow drying his or her bum between diaper changes, this might be something to try.

Dec 13 2015

14 Amazon Stocking Stuffers for Kids

Last year I did 17 One-Click Stocking Stuffers for Kids, because I order most of Hank’s stocking stuff through Amazon. I’m done in 15 minutes, and most of it comes within a few days. Last year’s picks are still good, and here are a few more. They’re affiliate linked, but all stuff I’ve bought for my own kids at one time or another.


Lego Star Wars Minis, $6-$10
I’m not sure how many of the Star Wars Mini Lego Kits I bought, but I think all? Every last one? Something like that. My favorite is the AT-AT above, but I also dig the ARC-170 Starfighter, Vulture Droid, Homing Spider Droid, and the Republic Gunship. I could go on.

Schylling Gone Fish’n Game, $7

Flash Drive Creative Cassette Shape (White / 1-Pack), $12
I’ve never made Hank a mixtape before, which seems silly. I just made him one for our Christmas road trip, and I’m excited about it.


ALEX Toys Artist Studio 24-Piece Rainbow Modeling Clay Set, $8

Mad Libs on the Road, $3

Minecraft Collectible Figure Mystery Blind Box, $7


Fresh Baked Mini Gingerbread Men, 50 cents each
This guy makes delicious homemade gingerbread men and then ships them to you in plastic wrap bundles that look suspiciously like drugs. Super good cookies, but I’d unwrap them before you tuck them in the stocking.


Go Anywhere Light, $6
These are cool on hoodie and backpack zippers, and make your kid easier to see at night. Presumably when he or she is out burgling things.

Hand Held Scalp Head Massager – Pack of Two, $1 each


Secret Message Pens Writing Set, $9

“I Love My Bike” Bicycle Bell, $4


Pippi Longstocking (Puffin Chalk), $8
I can’t believe I’ve never read this, so I ordered it and this edition is so cute. Perfect little floppy stocking book, or should I say Longstocking book? Bahaha.

Plus a couple of things for babies, because I’m shopping for one of those now too:

Wooden Cage Hand Bell, $5

Polar Bear Shaker, $9