happiness on the internet

The internet has been full of fantastic things lately...so naturally I thought I'd share the love!

This mashup of Donald Trump "performing" "Closer" by the Chainsmokers is a winner. Mostly for the ridiculous dancing. 

I cracked up at this incredibly perfect Beluga whale photobomb at an aquarium wedding, and all the gold that the internet has produced in response. Long live Katy Perry Left Shark!

April the Giraffe is internet-famous for taking forever to have her baby, and I confess I've had the live stream up on and off over the last day or so. Mostly because I find giraffes adorable and interesting. I fed a giraffe a saltine cracker at the Minnesota Zoo a few summers ago (like, with zookeeper permission) and it was the highlight of that year. Or at least one of them.

Lin Manuel Miranda continues to be my #1 favorite person in the world, and his reaction to the "Hamilton" cast's mashup of "The Schuyler Sisters" with his Oscar-nominated song from "Moana," "How Far I'll Go," during the red carpet preshow warmed my frigid heart so fast. I just love him. 

Of course, the real hot topic from the Oscars is everyone's reaction to the now-infamous Best Picture mix-up. While my Oscar party immediately erupted into total anarchy, I loved seeing that we weren't the only ones...the Oscar attendees themselves put up some pretty insane reactions of their own, as seen here. 

Happy Tuesday, campers! Hope it's lovely.

Champagne on the brain

It's Friday! We didn't get a Snowpocalypse! I'm working from home anyway, wheee! 

I've had champagne on the brain lately, with lots of little reasons to celebrate life in general coming up around the corner. Jonathan posted two articles on my Facebook earlier this week, and they made me smile (and crave bubbles, obviously). 

IMG_6494.JPG

First, tips on how to drink, serve, and enjoy champagne that made me smile. For instance, drinking champagne out of white wine glasses? Who knew!? I'm really into my yellow Anthropologie flutes, but also invested in a more open-necked set of Rona glasses over the holidays that are going to be my go-to for now. 

Second, and this made me laugh, Jonny shared this article on how to open a bottle of champagne. This called back to an inside joke of ours...I gave him and his friend Tyler my penthouse apartment at Eitel for New Year's Eve while I was at the Fiesta Bowl, with the understanding that they would behave and not trash it. Instead, apparently, they tried to saber a bottle of champagne with one of my Wusthof knives, and cracked the tip off the knife/shattered the top of the bottle. Gotta laugh! 

On my birthday/at Zach and Colleen's gender reveal party, our host, Eric, sabered several bottles of champagne for real, and it was fantastically fun to watch. The cuts were so clean we could drink straight from the bottle...so of course we did!

Now, on my whole healthy-eating, Whole30, get-fit kick, I'm really cutting back on the alcohol...which means no champagne for this girl, at least in the near future. Then again, apparently there are a ton of health benefits to drinking champagne...which is obviously why I'm doing it, ha. I'll be laughing at 80 when I've got flawless skin, a healthy heart, and a killer memory...glass of champagne in hand, of course. 

Already daydreaming of the next excuse to pop a bottle...it's looking like it will be this Sunday's Oscars party, and I'm thinking I'll make one of these recipes for a little extra fun. In the meantime, if anyone needs a little bubbly, let me know...I'll meet you at St. Genevieve anytime!

A foodie tour of Stockholm!

Hey, remember when we went to Scandinavia last JUNE?! I'm a shameful delinquent. While I covered our adventures in Iceland pretty thoroughly and shared a peek at Stockholm's Old Town and gorgeous Lake Malaren, one of the highlights of our time in Sweden was taking a locals' food tour. 

We booked this tour through Viator, which is one of our favorite resources for international travel, and adored the small-group experience. There were only a dozen people on our particular tour, and as we comprised five of them, it was nice to feel like we had a bit of a monopoly on the day. 

Our tour started bright and early in the Ostermalm Saluhall, the oldest food hall in Stockholm. It reminded me so much of a Borough Market type deal...sort of a farmer's market on crack. Our "breakfast" for the day consisted of a wide variety of reindeer and elk sausages...eek! We tried cured elk, smoked reindeer and a moose sausage, along with pungent Swedish cheeses (including a "holiday" cheese that had minced crayfish in it!) and a Swedish "breakfast beer" which was super malty. I had to get past the mental block of thinking about Rudolph and Co while enjoying the sausage, but once I did, I really enjoyed it...the smoky flavor was great and the meat was pretty lean.

From Saluhall, we headed further into the Ostermalm neighborhood and stopped at Ingelsta Kalkon, a deli that specialized only in turkey, another big Swedish meat. Apparently many delis do specialize like that...little did we know! We enjoyed Swedish turkey meatballs served the traditional way...with potatoes, pickles, gravy and lingonberry sauce...and they were delicious. 

Of course, being a city comprised of islands, seafood is huge in Stockholm. Our next visit was to the Sture Galleriam in Normalm, the heart of "Parisian Stockholm." The wide boulevards, carefully-tended trees and gorgeous buildings did remind me a bit of the 1e arrondissement in Paris! We headed to the Sturehof, famous for having the best fish dishes in Stockholm.

Seriously, look at all that seafood, We tasted pickled herring, smoked salmon, and a shrimp salad, all with a lot of dill (a staple of Swedish cuisine). While it was all really good and beautifully presented, this is about where I was like "holy crap, I'm really full and it's only like 11am."

From Sturehof, we headed to another food hall to visit P&B Delikatesser for licorice! Apparently licorice is a huge part of Swedish diets. We tried traditional sweet licorice, smoked licorice (which was such a weird flavor that I almost spit it out...eek! Acquired taste!), and white-chocolate covered bitter licorice...another totally bizarre combo. We also chatted about Swedish drinking culture...very beer-heavy, and sales of wine and hard liquor are very highly regulated due to the cultural disapproval of alcoholism and drunkenness. 

After a weird licorice tasting, we headed to Jonathan's favorite stop of the tour... Chokladfabriken, an artisan chocolatier. We tasted dark salted chocolate, milk chocolate, sea salt caramel chocolate, and a licorice-caramel-sea salt chocolate mix. We also sampled chocolate gelato made with 64% Madagascar dark chocolate.

Needless to say, Dad and Jonny found themselves at the counter buying a wide assortment to take home (or just snack on back at the AirBnB!). The photo doesn't do the size of the box justice...I think between the two of them, they picked out close to 2 dozen different pieces, ha!

Our second-to-last stop was in Gamla Stan at Polkagris Kolkeri for traditional Swedish candy. How cute is the shop?! This reminded me of the hard candy sticks we'd get at the apple orchard or General Store if we were well-behaved as kids...so many flavors, and wrapped in the prettiest patterned paper. 

We tasted classic peppermint and a few other flavors before heading to our final stop of the tour, fika at Under Kastanjen! Fika is basically a mandatory Swedish coffee break, taken daily with friends, which I think is the BEST idea. While fika typically includes coffee or tea and a cinnamon-cardamom roll, we did our fika the Schwegman way... 

...duh. 

all in all, by 2pm after doing pretty much nothing but eating for six hours, we were ready to roll home and take a giant nap. What a great way to see a wide variety of neighborhoods in Stockholm and try food I would NEVER have eaten otherwise! 

101 in 1001 #43: Unsubscribe from junk emails.

Way to start my second 101 in 1001 off with a bang...the ever-glamorous task of unsubscribing from junk emails! 

After I did all my holiday shopping digitally this year, I found myself subscribed to a plethora of random companies' email lists...companies I would likely not be purchasing from again (looking at you, Santa Flask). Additionally, having been the principal planner of several international trips at this point, I was on random distributions from France, Norway, Iceland, Sweden, the UK, and Puerto Rico. Ummmm...awesome, but also the pain of getting emails from the English National Opera or our Norway fjord tour company was just too much to handle on any given Tuesday at the office. 

Enter Unroll.me, an app that fuses the swiping fun of Tinder or Bumble with the practical benefits of reducing junk emails. I downloaded it on one of those random Tuesdays, and went to town. 

Screenshots below: 

Swipe left! 

Swipe up! (I didn't swipe up at all. It's too different from my dating app world - whoa, Unroll.me, make me step out of my comfort zone!)

Swipe right to keep! Awwww, so fun! 

As apparent by the timestamp on my phone, the process of setting it up and getting going took all of 2 minutes. With 478 subscriptions to go through, I thought this was going to take forever and be a pick it up as you go type deal. Instead....

I was whizzing through subscriptions faster than I swipe left on Tinder when drunk. And before I knew it...

FOURTEEN MINUTES, CAMPERS. And that junk email is gone. How insanely amazing is that?! I can't recommend Unroll.me highly enough...it was such a perfect random discovery in the App Store, and saved me hours of laboriously going through my emails one by one and unsubscribing from the computer. Check it out! 

For more (and more exciting) 101 in 1001, head here

#foreverjoshandtash

4/5 of the Schwegfam kicked off February with a warm-weather trip to Miami and Puerto Rico (missed you, Jonny D!). The reason for the trip? My cousin Josh's wedding at the stunning Miami Biltmore! 

We all had a blast in our black-tie best messing around before heading over to the Biltmore from our beachfront condos...

Doesn't my papa bear look fantastic in his tux?!?! And how perfect is Em's bright dress for a Miami wedding?

Aunt Kathy and her gorgeous fam...while the attire may have been appropriate, the behavior was anything but...

Ready to throw down, Papa Schwegs (also stealing my mom's shoes at the earliest opportunity). 

Once we arrived at the Biltmore, we headed out to a fabulous set up, took our seats, and waited a while for the ceremony to start. I can think of worse ways to pass the time than listening to live strings, outside in 80-degree sunshine, with cutie-pie cousin Reese and the Snapchat puppy filter...

IMG_6709.PNG

The ceremony itself was gorgeous, as was Natasha's Berta gown. So classic! 

The Arnolds clean up nicely :) 

Cocktail hour was outside on a veranda - again, couldn't get over how heavenly it was to enjoy sunshine and warm temps in February! I particularly loved their table assignments - airline "tickets" suspended from tiny airplanes in honor of Josh's career as a pilot!

I'd say the Schwegfam makes black tie look pretty nice, personally...

I also tried my hand at the whole fashion blogger photo thing and, clearly, failed miserably. THANKS CHAMPAGNE. 

Inside the reception, the party kicked off with live music, a lovely first dance, and heartfelt speeches by both sets of parents, the best men (my cousins Jake and Matt) and maid of honor, and the happy couple. 

Little Brooke drinking water out of her champagne glass made my night...little cousins make every party more fun just by being adorable. Brooke danced her socks off and spent most of the reception sleeping on three chairs pushed together, under her dad's tux jacket...oh to be four and darling and able to get away with that! 

The highlight of the reception? The "hora loca," a Caribbean tradition in which performers show up just as the party starts to calm down...and kick it up several (hundred) notches. Josh and Tash had a salsa group come in, and before we knew it the EDM was pumping courtesy of their late-night DJ, the dance floor was raging, and we were all out there with light-up stunna shades, feather boas, and Mardi Gras beads on. 

After we danced til we dropped, I caught I think the only photos of the four Schwegman siblings (my dad, Aunts Kathy and Mary Beth, and Uncle Jim) of the evening...while we got ONE good one out of the bunch, I have about eight out-takes in which some or all of them are making absurd faces and generally being ridiculous. 

Congrats Josh and Tash! You threw one hell of a party!