The last time we checked in for our staff’s Weekly Upgrades, our editors were busy noise cancelling, meal prepping, and experimenting with calmer commute options.
This week, our efforts at self-improvement ranged from ignoring the onset of fall altogether (hello, sandals and otter pops!) to preparing for the cold months to come (think throw pillows, cosy blankets, and shutting ourselves indoors with reading material and video games).
What upgrades did you make this week? Let us know in the comments.
Experiment with DIY icy poles
“I made icy pole-style ice treats for a BBQ, and they were a hit. They were just like these, but without the booze. (Next time, I’m definitely including the booze.) I made two flavours: Cold brew (cold brew + chocolate ice cream + milk) and strawberries and cream (strawberry yoghurt + strawberry preserve + fresh strawberries + milk and cream). I filled up these long plastic bags using a spouted pitcher, stuck them in the freezer overnight, and I was done. Both the kids and adults were excited about the pops, especially since it was 35C out. Someone I just met even called me the ‘coolest mum ever’. Yep, this is now my go-to potluck dessert.” –Michelle Woo, Staff Writer
Splash around in Saltwater Sandals
“Every woman who likes to frolic in bodies of water should own a pair of Saltwater Sandals. [Ed note: if you have fussy feet that require comfort and support, you should NOT own a pair of Salwater Sandals.] They are SUPER CUTE and always look great no matter how much water you frolic in. You can splash around at the beach, wash the sand off with a hose, and wear them to dinner. I have the original in yellow and tan, and I get compliments whenever I wear them.” – Claire Lower, Staff Writer
Embrace the dying medium of print
“This week, I embraced analogue reading in two ways: The first is that I finally looked into why I haven’t been my getting copies of The New Yorker since I moved in July. (Answer: I accidentally gave them the address for the house next door when I updated my mailing info. Oops.) The second was that I sprung for a sale, and bought a year’s subscription of Bon Appetit for just $US10 ($12), complete with a very good looking tote bag. Bone apple tea to me.” – Virginia K. Smith, Managing Editor
Enhance your typing experience
“Sure, touchscreens are the way of the future, but I still love making the clackity noise whenever I can. I have a fancy mechanical keyboard hooked up to my PC at home, and rarely use they too-shallow keyboard on the new MacBook Pro, despite its pleasant typing tone. Instead I’ve been using my new favourite typing tool, the Logitech K811 Easy-Switch Keyboard. It’s a compact Bluetooth keyboard that can hotswap keyboard controls with up to three different devices. It charges via a Micro-USB port, and lasts a pretty long time before it needs another recharge.
Right now it’s connected to my iPhone, iPad and MacBook (which sits on a stand), making it super simple to pop in and out of each to type something up, respond to a text, or reply to an email. Lately I’ve been toting it, along with my iPad, to my local café on the weekends, where I oscillate from reading comics to writing IGPX fanfiction. Team Satomi for life.” – Patrick Austin, Staff Writer
“I brought my favourite afghan out of storage. I started knitting it earlier this year, and really enjoyed spending some time every evening working on a square, usually while listening to a podcast. It’s a pattern that’s interesting to look at but easy to knit, so I look forward both to snuggling under it and to making it even bigger and warmer.” – Beth Skwarecki, Staff Writer
Get your side projects on a set schedule
“I write a scripted podcast with my friend Tim, but without any due dates, we’ve been moving too slowly. This week we started scheduling out our solo writing time, and setting goals to reach by our next meeting. This has added some accountability to our project and made it feel less like a meandering hobby.” – Nick Douglas, Staff Writer
Spring for a shaggier throw pillow
“This week I ordered this pillow, which I had already fondled in the store while many people asked if they could help me and I barked, ‘Can’t you see we’re in love?’ It’s going to transform my couch-sitting (and -napping) experience. I predict that, as much as I and my family will enjoy this soft muppet of a pillow, my dog is going to lose her freaking mind. She will be its #1 fan, by which I mean she’ll be humping it every chance she gets.” – Alice Bradley, Deputy Editor
Follow your destiny
“Destiny 2. Goodbye real world.” – Patrick Allan, Staff Writer