Wouldn’t want to shelter in place with anyone else ❤️❤️❤️ I’ve been a smidge MIA lately, but I’m giving myself some grace because it’s a brave new world out there, peeps. I did manage to finish two blog posts this week, so you’ll want to click that link in my bio if you’re interested in: • a list of totally free stuff to do in self-isolation to keep the cabin fever at bay, or • my favorite things from March, including two shows and an awesome book for my #amwriting friends. I have some ideas for content to share over the next month (spoiler alert: get ready for a definitive ranking of the best 𝘗𝘳𝘪𝘥𝘦 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘗𝘳𝘦𝘫𝘶𝘥𝘪𝘤𝘦 adaptations), but do hop in the comments in there’s something in particular that I can help you with. I hope you’re all safe and happy and healthy. It’s a scary time, and the news doesn’t always help our mental states, but there’s still a lot of good in the world, and I hope you’re seeing some of that in your everyday lives. All of my love —Tyler #stayhome
Let me be completely honest, okay? I'm not feeling 100% this International Women's Day. As you all know, the final woman running for the Democratic nominee ended her campaign on Thursday, and what began with six women all those months ago came to an end. It's officially official that we'll have to wait another four years for the opportunity to elect a female president. It sucks, it's not okay, and it's left me feeling a little 𝘣𝘭𝘢𝘩. But then I found this quote by Nora Ephron, a damn good writer and filmmaker. For the last five years, I've blogged about the books I'm reading, places I'm visiting, lifestyle changes I'm making 𝐭𝐨 𝐛𝐞𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐞 𝐚 𝐛𝐞𝐭𝐭𝐞𝐫 𝐡𝐞𝐫𝐨𝐢𝐧𝐞 𝐨𝐟 𝐦𝐲 𝐨𝐰𝐧 𝐬𝐭𝐨𝐫𝐲. Letting this one (devastating) blow stop me from completely embracing that goal was not an option. So I had myself a good cry, and now I'm ready to get back on the horse—assuming "the horse" is anything and everything that needs doing to work toward gender equality in this country and across the world. The first step I took? 𝐂𝐡𝐞𝐜𝐤𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐦𝐲 𝐯𝐨𝐭𝐞𝐫 𝐫𝐞𝐠𝐢𝐬𝐭𝐫𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧. Let this be a reminder all my ladies—and gents—to check your own voter registration. It's a quick Google search or visit to Vote.org to check it electronically. This year's elections and everything that follows will be no joke, especially if you care about things like healthcare reform, a woman's right to choose, parental leave for women and men, etc. etc. etc. Be sure you can make your voice heard at the ballots this year! Oh, and leave a little love in the comments for a 𝐬𝐭𝐫𝐨𝐧𝐠, 𝘱𝘢𝘴𝘴𝘪𝘰𝘯𝘢𝘵𝘦 𝐡𝐞𝐫𝐨𝐢𝐧𝐞 in your life! 💪🏻💪🏻 #IWD #iwd2020 #internationalwomensday
We survived an entire week without piping hot phở and flaky bánh mì. I'm not entirely sure how, but we did. There are plenty of really wonderful places to grab lunch in Cincinnati, but Le's was special. It's where two of my coworkers and I would celebrate the first day of NaNoWriMo, and the tiny restaurant was the perfect place to warm up on a wintry day. Thanks for the memories, Le's! You won't be forgotten. #Cincy peeps, help a sister out and leave your favorite Cincinnati eatery in the comments. All cuisines accepted. Bonus points if it’s within walking distance of the Scripps Center! #cincinnatieats #cincyeats #cincygram
When you're so cute, the paparazzi won't let you eat your peanuts in peace. 😎 I don't know about you, but whenever I'm planning a trip and find something fun to do that includes animals, I get a little 𝘯𝘦𝘳𝘷𝘰𝘶𝘴. From SeaWorld and its orca issues to elephants abused into being "rideable," the experiences that look so great on Instagram can be questionable at best and downright dangerous to the animals at their worst. That's why I was so excited to find Iwatayama Monkey Park on a list of things to do in Kyoto. Up in the Arashiyama district, the park is home to a troop of 𝐉𝐚𝐩𝐚𝐧𝐞𝐬𝐞 𝐦𝐚𝐜𝐚𝐪𝐮𝐞𝐬, also known as snow macaques. There are about 120 macaques in all, and they live in the forests on Mount Arashiyama, totally free and able to come and go as they please. When you visit Iwatayama, it's the humans that get caged off. You enter an enclosed building with windows across three sides where the macaques come to accept apples and peanuts. No one from the park herds them to the windows or interferes with them at all. The macaques know the food is there, and if they want it they'll approach the building and accept it from the open palms of delighted humans. All in all, it was an amazing experience for us, and the macaques certainly didn't look like they took issue with it either. The mothers even brought their cute little babies right up to the window to meet us! #worldwildlifeday #arashiyamamonkeypark #iwatayamamonkeypark
Hear ye, hear ye! This time around #LeapDay marks a very momentous occasion: @mollydbecker joining the @scrippsnationalspellingbee team! 4 years of her wisdom, her courage, her kindness, not to mention all the fierce outfits and spontaneous dance breaks (bless my soul!). I'm #blessed to consider her a friend and my right-hand cubicle neighbor. To celebrate, here're four selfies from the last four years. Leap years don't come around often, but when they do, they bring surprises that are worth the wait. Love ya, Becks. ❤️
Things I checked off my to-do list this month: ✔️ Finished 𝘊𝘪𝘵𝘺 𝘰𝘧 𝘎𝘪𝘳𝘭𝘴 ✔️ Wrote 3 blog posts (#FridayFinale out tomorrow!) ✔️ Filed our taxes with TurboTax Live I've been a @TurboTax user since sixteen-year-old me got her first job hosting at Red Lobster. (𝘔𝘮𝘮𝘮𝘮𝘮, biscuits!) Using TurboxTax has always been simple, efficient, and affordable, which is why I’ve used it consistently for over a decade. So, when @Influenster gave me to the opportunity to test the new 𝐓𝐮𝐫𝐛𝐨𝐓𝐚𝐱 𝐋𝐢𝐯𝐞 for free, I immediately raised my hand. 🙋🏻♀️ Having the ability to ask questions of my TurboTax Live Expert—a real human person—through message or video chat, whenever I wanted, gave me complete peace of mind. 𝘞𝘩𝘢𝘵'𝘴 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘧𝘰𝘳𝘮 𝘧𝘰𝘳? 𝘏𝘰𝘸 𝘥𝘰 𝘐 𝘤𝘭𝘢𝘴𝘴𝘪𝘧𝘺 𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘦𝘹𝘱𝘦𝘯𝘴𝘦? 𝘞𝘩𝘺 𝘴𝘩𝘰𝘶𝘭𝘥 𝘐 𝘧𝘪𝘭𝘦 𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘸𝘢𝘺 𝘧𝘰𝘳 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘣𝘪𝘨𝘨𝘦𝘴𝘵 𝘳𝘦𝘵𝘶𝘳𝘯? ← And those are just a handful of the questions I came up with throughout my tax filing experience. Have you checked "file my taxes" off your to-do list? April 15 will be here before you know it, so if you have any questions about TurboTax Live, feel free to leave 'em below or send me a DM. And then swipe for a lil’ bonus blooper. ☺️ #TurboTaxLiveExperts #contest #complimentary
Happy Mardi Gras, everyone! 💜💚💛 I don't know about you, but this season takes me right back to New Orleans and the French Quarter. I've been fortunate enough to visit twice, though never during the actual season. (Being completely honest, I'm not sure I would survive a night in NOLA during Mardi Gras. I could barely handle a few hurricanes and a third of a Hand Grenade. 🤢) The last time I visited, I snapped this photo of the beautiful chandeliers in the @hotelmonteleone's lobby. I dragged @corrieloeffler through the city after a ghost tour in an attempt to get a feel for the route of the first Mardi Gras parade (#writerproblems), and we wound up here for the famous Carousel Bar. Any fellow writers out there want to own up to the weirdest thing you've done in the name of 𝘳𝘦𝘴𝘦𝘢𝘳𝘤𝘩? 😂
Happy #NationalMargaritaDay from me and all the limes that will be sacrificed to the tequila gods tonight! 🌵🌵🌵 I'll be enjoying my margaritas solo — tequila is a big no for Spencer — which means I get to make all the decisions. This time around, I'm going super simple: fresh lime juice, simple syrup, a little Grand Marnier, and a zesty salted rim. I hope you’re celebrating this most important of holidays, too!
🎶 𝘊𝘢𝘯 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘧𝘦𝘦𝘭 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘭𝘰𝘷𝘦 𝘵𝘰𝘯𝘪𝘨𝘩𝘵? 🎶 Yes, Valentine's Day was last week, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't start planning your next romantic getaway now. Picture it: You're hundreds of feet above the ground, completely surrounded by rainforest. It's beautiful, exciting, and honestly a little scary. Just you, your companions, and a rope bridge out in the middle of Kakum National Park in southern Ghana. Read about this incredibly unique experience and nine other romantic places in today's blog post at 𝐀𝐧 𝐀𝐬𝐩𝐢𝐫𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐇𝐞𝐫𝐨𝐢𝐧𝐞. And then go check out @bellebrita and @kaylakedavra's posts for the #LoveBlog2020 challenge. We're talking all things 𝘵𝘳𝘢𝘷𝘦𝘭 today!