A gift guide that does not at all resemble a gift guide, WTF, Heather

OK, first things first… I’ll eat your brains. Sorry, had to do it. Was compelled. You may not have any idea what that first sentence is in reference to, and if you aren’t I will not hold it against you. If you are, however, and 1) we are friends, and 2) that is not your favorite verse of that song, then I am going to have to remove you from my Christmas card list that does not exist. Yet. Don’t make me start one now just so that I get to exclude you from it.

She on a diet but her pockets eating cheesecake.


First: Go read this essay. I’ll get to it later in this post, but like I said. First things first:

Jon McGregor: ‘I have never been asked how I juggle writing and fatherhood’

Second, that essay should give you some clue as to what it’s like to try to write a book while attending to, you know, everything else in life that is a totally vindictive distraction from writing a book and how carving out an uninterrupted four-hour block of time is the most ridiculous idea ever floated from a person’s mouth except for, “You know, maybe we should just negotiate with Mitch McConnell.”

Monday is a book-writing day for me, but I just now took a 20-minute break to check my email—BE YE NOT SO STUPID—and whoa, is Valentine’s Day ever a time when bloggers get pitched ideas for things to buy their sweet honey shnookums. I cannot possibly sift though all the email today, but last week threw me for a loop in terms of unforeseen things just popping up out of nowhere and I forgot about a promotion that’s been going on since the 11th. Don’t worry. It goes through the 31st, so I didn’t totally screw it all up. Only just a little bit.

There are only three things I am going to suggest you buy for your dear loved one if you plan on doing so for the holiday? Is it a holiday? What is it? A gentle reminder to those who are alone that, guess what, it is perfectly okay to be alone. Being alone has its definite pros (sure, it has its fair share of cons, I won’t lie; see: GODDAMN I COULD USE AN EXTRA SET OF HANDS RIGHT ABOUT NOW), and too often those pros are overlooked. Finding peace while being alone is one of the greatest things I have ever experienced, and while it wasn’t an easy road I finally got there and I am so glad that I did. Sure, my circumstances have changed recently, but going into something having learned what I learned about myself in solitude—and in solitude as an adult—I feel like I have so much more to offer of myself to someone else.

Yuck. Sorry. That got really earnest. Vomit. Torch it. Upchuck.

So, ButcherBox is running a promotion: For any new customer that signs up between January 11 and January 31, they will get free bacon for all of 2018. So, new customers will get free bacon in every box that they get in 2018.

REMEMBER: I talked to one of the pig farmers they work with, someone who treats his animals and his land with the reverence they are due. And my kids eat the bacon that comes in our box every month as if it were chocolate. The entire package in one sitting. If you are looking for sustainably-sourced and humanely-raised bacon, here’s your chance to get it for free.

ABOUT THEIR BACON: Uncured, sugar/nitrate/hormone free, made from pasture raised, heritage breed pigs AND it’s whole30 approved.

Next, I got a lot of inquiries as to what kind of mascara I am wearing in this photo:

A post shared by Heather B. Armstrong (@dooce) on

Sometimes I will visit my friend, Heather, for a lash lift if I know I’m going to be doing a ton of traveling or taking a lot of meetings, but that’s maybe once or twice a year. On a day-to-day basis, though, I use this mascara: Dior Diorshow Black Out Mascara. This mascara alone. I swear by it. Admittedly, my mother and father blessed me with a shit ton of eyebrows and eyelashes, and if you’ve seen any closeups of my girls, they might be mistaken as my kids for their eyelashes alone. But this is hands down the best mascara I’ve ever used. Strangers routinely stop me and ask me what I do to get my eyelashes so dark and thick, and I’m like, “I fell asleep last night without taking off my makeup. Are you hallucinating?”

Finally, this book:

If you don’t follow Pete Souza on Instagram, you are missing out on one of the greatest and most strategic kinds of shade that could be thrown at the current administration. In the book there is this one series of four photos that he took of Sasha sneaking up on President Obama in the Oval Office, and the look on the President’s face when she jumps out from behind the couch is a parenting classic: “Kid. I am going to humor you, but not before I stare at you like maybe I wish for one second that we’d taken home the wrong baby from the hospital.” I cannot look at his expression without totally losing my shit. So human. So real. Such a parent.

And that’s it. Those three things. If I were to include a fourth thing it would be TIME. Not the magazine, the actual thing. Give the gift of time. And I don’t mean a goddamn watch, either. My mother took Leta to her orthodontist appointment this morning so that I didn’t lose a good three-hour chunk of my workday, and that gesture alone changed my outlook on the whole week.

Mom, I’d marry you, but that would be weird and grossly stereotypical of our heritage.

Oh! I was going to get back to that article that I linked to up above, but I’m going to save that for later this week. When I can slot in some time between “the thinking time, reading time, research time and sketching out ideas time” and “the running out of the door and trying to get to the school gates at anything like a decent time time.” Then.