My Favorite Things: May 2019

“Dead to Me”, “Life in Pieces”, Simple Prints, “Introverted Mom”, INFJ, Myers-Briggs, personalities, dark comedy, Netflix, Christina Applegate, sitcom, CBS, Jamie Martin, photo book, albums, app, pictures, book, Kindle

This month’s list includes two binge-worthy shows, an easy-to-use photo album app, and a book geared towards moms, especially the introverted type (or those just coveting some peace & quiet and alone time).

1) Dead to Me

 
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Obsessed would be putting it lightly. I binge-watched the first season of Dead to Me over the past few days, and now I don’t know what to do with myself!

Netflix released this dark comedy on May 3, and viewers are already screaming for more.

Dead to Me stars Christina Applegate as Jen whose husband recently died in a hit-and-run. The sardonic widow is determined to solve the crime. Optimistic free spirit Judy (played by Linda Cardellini) has recently suffered a tragic loss of her own. The ladies meet at a support group and, despite their polar-opposite personalities, become unlikely friends. As the women bond over bottles of wine and a shared affinity for "The Facts of Life," Judy tries to shield Jen from a shocking secret that could destroy her life as she knows it. 

I want to tell you so much more, but I don’t want to give away secrets and plot twists. If you’re looking for a new summer show, please, go watch this one! It probably won’t last you the summer as Season 1 only contains ten episodes. I’m waiting with bated breath for Season 2!

2) Life in Pieces

 
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I’m absolutely revolting over the cancellation of this CBS sitcom. I do not often LOL at anything, but this show cracks me up every time. In my opinion, we all need more comedy in our lives.

So before this show goes away, do yourself a favor and watch the few episodes that remain before Season 4 ends. (I’m hoping it’ll air in syndication somewhere sometime since my other favorite sitcom Modern Family is also in its last season.) Pass the tissues.

If you’re not familiar, accomplished actors Dianne Wiest and James Brolin star as the heads of a large, happy family, in which each member is approaching different milestones. Their eldest daughter, Heather (Betsy Brandt) and her husband hilariously parent tween and teens who all have crises of their own; middle child Matt (Thomas Sadoski) has found true love and is now adopting a child; and the youngest of the three siblings, Greg (Colin Hanks) is overwhelmed after having his first baby with his wife, and another is on the way.

Life in Pieces is about one big happy family and their sometimes awkward, often hilarious and ultimately beautiful milestone moments as told by its various members. Each episode is divided into four short stories that intertwine, showing us what life is really about.

3) Simple Prints

 
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This app is a game-changer if you’ve ever been frustrated attempting to make photo albums online. I searched far and wide, and this is the easiest, most user-friendly photo book platform I’ve found.

Each year, right after my sons’ birthdays, I make a photo album of the previous year’s pictures. It’s their final birthday present which also doubles as a beautiful keepsake.

I would put off this task for a long time because I couldn’t stand how long it would take me to create such a book. I tried many online sites like Shutterfly and Mixbook, but none were truly easy and quick.

Simple Prints offers easy-to-create photo books, made entirely on your mobile device.

I know what you’re thinking … how can it be easy to create a photo book on my little phone?

Well, you can literally select from every picture on your camera roll and easily drag and drop photos right into the book. You can also select how many photos appear on each page.

One little tip and trick I’ve been doing … on my iPhone, I create a new “album” for each year. For example, I have one titled “Nathan age 4.” Every picture I took on my phone of Nathan throughout his fourth year went into this album. Then, when I created the photo book on Simple Prints, I just selected all of the photos from that album, and voila! They were right there in the book.

But don’t worry, if you don’t have albums on your phone, no worries. Simple Prints makes it easy to scroll through your phone to select all the photos you want. It’s also easy to delete or remove any photos or extra pages.

All of the books are handmade in the USA and exclusively printed on high-quality FCS-certified papers. You can print up to 300 memorable pages and expect a durable, professional binding built to last. You can also order directly from the app and have the book shipped right to your door.

4) Introverted Mom

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I bought the Kindle version of this book based on several recommendations. Introverted Mom: Your Guide to More Calm, Less Guilt, and Quiet Joy by Jamie C. Martin was just what I needed to read as a mom sometimes struggling through the toddler tantrums and preschool years.

When I was in my 20s, I first took the Myers-Briggs personality Type Indicator test (MBTI). I was identified as an INFJ, a true introvert at heart. At first, I was a little embarrassed since I’d always wanted to be an extrovert but never seemed to quite fit into that category. Over the years, I’ve come to embrace being an introvert.

This book seemed to read my mind and touch my soul.

Martin shares vulnerable stories from her own life as well as thoughts from other introverted mothers, letting you know you're not alone. Her practical suggestions and creative inspiration are enhanced with quotes and insights from other beloved writers.

If you are an introvert or just a mother who relishes quiet time alone and away from family, this book will be a godsend. You’ll feel understood, knowing that you have every right to recharge and care for yourself in solitude. Moms are sometimes made to feel guilty when they prioritize themselves. But the reality is, in doing so, introverted moms can then better care for their families.

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