Pictures Of Things + Le Love List :: 16/52

April 24th, 2017 - filed under: Furthermore » Feedback


At the People’s March For Science this Saturday. Waits designed and drew his sign: “No To Dirty Oceans, Yes To Clean Oceans”

So honestly I am exhausted. What a week. What a weekend! I’m completely exhausted, but it’s that delicious, satisfying sort of exhaustion that comes from doing work that feels worth it. In my career, in my activism, and in my personal life and family, I’ve been doing a lot of work that feels so, so worth it.

So I’m exhausted, and I’m totally okay with it. A few photos from this past week:


Sunday Funday with friends.

This photo was taken from inside a hammock, on said Sunday Funday.


Nerf gun fights are one of my favorite things, seriously. Why are they so fun??


This week in the school garden: monarch caterpillars on our milkweed!

And we already got our first gorgeous chrysalis.

When you’re at a play date and you walk into the guest bathroom. Oh, California.

This is the view from the lot where I park every day at UCSB. A tangled wall of wildflowers, the beautiful freshwater lagoon, and the ocean beyond. I’m working on “looking up” and really seeing the world around me. And I feel grateful for where I live, where I work, and what I see.

On my walk from auto to office.


On Friday night Jeremy took me on a secret date. He told me about it a few weeks ago,
but I didn’t know any of the details. All I knew was that it was out of town, and that I should wear regular clothes. On Friday evening he picked me up and whisked me off, I didn’t even know what direction we would be driving!

And as it was, we didn’t go North along the coast, and we didn’t head south towards LA. Instead, we turned up the old two lane highway and drove into the foothills, towards the Santa Ynez valley. Towards wine country. And we landed at this adorable, fancy little farm-to-table restaurant, where we were given the super, *super*, superstar treatment. Everything pre-arranged, a full multi-course gluten-free vegan meal, and it was so unexpected and amazing. Thank you baby!


On Saturday I attended the March For Science, and I was so proud to be there representing not only as a scientist, but also as a member of SURJ (Showing Up For Racial Justice). Our SURJ group marched together and we all carried signs that were aimed at bringing an intersectional message to the march.


My new friend Jack!

About halfway through the march, we met up with Waits and Damian and Danielle, and we walked the rest of the way with them. And most of that time, it looked like that^^. Waits was holding my hand, and then he reached up and grabbed Danielle’s hand, and the three of us marched the rest of the time like that. And I thought — “How lucky is this kid? An ecologist mom on one side, and a genetic counselor “stepmom” on the other. An amazing, open-hearted little boy being raised by two strong, smart lady scientists.” And I feel so proud of this little family we’ve made. ♥

Go Science!


And now, it’s time for the one, the only, Le Love List!

Pleiometrics. // Seeing common vegetables prepared in completely new and unique ways. // Rioja. // The thunderous roar of Waits helping Jeremy roll out the garbage cans. // Office supplies. // Getting a Mother’s Day Tea invitation from Waits in the mail. // Powering through. // Secret Date Night. Our secret date ended with a live show, and I was wracking my brain trying to think of who it could be. There’s not any big venues in wine country, so it couldn’t be a big deal headliner. And I don’t even really listen to much music, just old folk and some newer melancholy stuff, but really mostly podcasts these days. Who could it be?

When we walked into the ballroom and I saw the big America banner hanging behind the stage, my mouth literally dropped open. For those who don’t know, America is a late-60s/early 70s quintessential folk band. Lots of people look at me blankly when I say their name, but most everyone actually does know their music: Horse With No Name, Muskrat Love, Tin Man, I Need You, and so much more. You’d recognize them in a heartbeat if you heard them.

I was never really into them until this one afternoon just almost exactly a year ago, when we had a spontaneous family painting adventure and decorated our washer and dryer. While we were painting, Jeremy put on America’s greatest hits and we listened to the whole thing through, and when it was done I said “Hey, do you mind if we listen to that again?” And so we did. The whole thing.

And I’ve been a huge fan ever since. This is the music we play when we want to relax and have fun: road trips to far off places, family drives through the mountains, cards and cocktails in the back yard. It’s whimsical and melodic and haunting and emotional, and it’s the kind of music that makes you smile, ear to ear. So when I saw that banner, I could hardly believe what I was seeing. America is an OLD band! I would never have guessed that they’re still touring, but they are, and they are amazing.

And they played my favorite song, Ventura Highway, which is my happy song, and I totally cried because I have all the feelings. It was just so magical, and I am so grateful to Jeremy for making it all happen. Talk about surprise! Yes yes, surprise date = success.

♥ ♥ ♥


Alright guys, now it’s your turn! I really love reading your own Le Love Lists, so please leave them down in the comments below. What are the little things in your life that make you smile this week?

Happy new week, and I hope it’s a good one!

  • Sarah C.

    an old mentor is in town to give some talks at my university, and seeing him and getting all the advice has been a balm to my intellectual soul // salad made from homegrown lettuce, kale, and radishes topped with a family heirloom recipe salad dressing // learning my best friends in town are leaving (sad) and having that prompt my own thinking about how long I’ll stay here + dreaming about my future // finally painting over the mustard yellow wall that I’ve hated for 5 years // trying twitter

  • Chloe

    Just popping to comment on last week’s Love List (I’m late!). I had a tea habit at work too, drinking weak green tea all day long and wound up with serious anemia, which I’m totally blaming on the tea. So your habit might be herbal in the first place but in case it’s not, I just wanted to caution you. Cheers!

  • christa gowen

    Ha! I totally know who America is….growing up my dad only listened to “oldies,” and therefore so did I. I can remember getting teased in 5th grade when I didn’t know the TLC song Waterfalls…but I can sing to all of America’s songs. :)

  • Jayne

    Oh people make so much fun of me for my love of America. Horse With No Name was the first song I learned to play on the guitar. (Badly but still….) It’s been a rough patch for me lately but let’s see if I can contribute to Le Love List. The zinnias blooming on my balcony garden, two clients at work that said thank you for being you, those little magic serendipitous flashes that kept happening all week when I needed the nudge to keep my chin up.

  • Christen Oliver

    The whiff of fresh lilac on my parents porch…my daughter scoring a goal…the crunch of gravel beneath my feet…daffodils…completing a work project that has been driving me crazy…having an a-ha moment…a hug from a patient…a bowl of cereal for dinner…beets…Driving home from work on a Friday evening and feeling free for a few days…fresh sheets on my bed…

  • Sayward Rebhal

    Whyyyy is crunchy gravel so very good?? =D

    Hope you have a great weekend, Christen!

  • Sayward Rebhal

    America is a ridiculously good band! So awesome you love them too, and no one should ever make fun of you for it!

    I’m sorry it’s been a rough time for you Jayne. I hope the weekend brings some relaxation and some smiles. ♥

  • Sayward Rebhal

    Your dad has great taste! ;-D

  • Sayward Rebhal

    Thanks Chloe, I will look into that!

  • Christen Oliver

    I have no idea! and all different kinds of gravel, too! Same to you!