The Little Red Owl

DIY ideas for home, health, & life

“What should I read?” was a question recently posed to Husband and myself by a friend and it made me want to share some of the wonderful I have read so far this year.

These are in no particular order:

  • Bringing Up Bebe by Pamela Druckerman

This was released in 2012 and is written honestly and genuinely-2 things I greatly appreciate. I do not have any kids so I was skeptical if I would like this book but I thoroughly enjoy it. I love the way Pamela writes and I learned so much from this book. Whether that knowledge gets applied to my own children, others kids, or simply in life in general is fine by me.


  • Cheap Chic by Caterine Milinaire

So I got this book on a random “vintage” search at the library ( I literally type in vintage on the libraries online search and check out things that come up). I started reading this book and I was immediately awestruck. The information, ideas, and practicality in this book are as true today as they were when this was released in 1975. Unbeknownst to me, this book was just re-released with a forward by Tim Gunn.


  • French Women Don’t Get Fat by Mireille Guiliano

So after I read “Bringing Up Bebe” I searched the library for more “french living” books. This one came up and the title was so hilarious that I checked it out. No joke-this book as changed my life. Her practical and no-nonsense approach to being healthy really struck a nerve with me and I have made many adjustments in the my life due to reading this book. I am trying new foods with an open mind, drinking more water, getting more rest, learning to enjoy every morsel I put in my body and generally just feeling a lot better. I highly recommend this book if you need a little extra incentive to live what you already know to be the best for yourself.


  • The Awakening by Kate Chopin

I read this book after I saw it on a random list of “top feminist books to read”. This book is sad and beautiful and short. The perfect read for a plane trip or before bed. Written in 1899 this book was wonderfully descriptive and I really enjoyed it from beginning to end.

the awakening

  • The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

This book was also on the “top feminist books to read” list and it was on my radar to read. The book came out in 1985 and is wonderfully and darkly imaginative. I could not put this book down. I recommend this to everyone.


  • How the States Got Their Shape by Mark Stein

So Netflix had a show available from the History Channel called “How the States Got Their Shape” and it was hosted by Brian Unger! Bonus! I loved the first season of the show but it quickly derailed, so I got the book it was originated off of and, no surprise, it’s amazing. This book is relatively short and has a chapter on each state and how it came to be. It is fascinating and so fun to learn more about the country I am native of.


  • Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham

I am sure you have heard of this book if not already read it. I am a big fan of Lena Dunham. I like Girls and Tiny Furniture and she is the only celebrity I follow on Instragram. Lena is so honest, vulnerable, and hilarious. She is so wonderfully human. I loved the book.


  • Written in 1943 this book is super descriptive and I felt transferred into this world every time I picked it up. The book is dense and real. A story of a family and in particular a little girl called Francie. This book seems to have no agenda and is simply the story of life.


What books have you been reading lately? Anything you recommend? I like reading books by female writers and I am not afraid to learn :)


Hello world!

Here is what I (and The Little Red Owl) have been up to lately:

  • local summer fleas

Lots for sale @thecityflea come on down! 10-4pm @washingtonparkotr

We are @thecityflea and #theoffmarket today. Come to one, come to both. Great deals all around


  • zoo trips


  • local farmers market shopping
  • neighborhood walks with Husband


  • new medication bringing my PMDD down a couple notches-woot!
  • a new nephew! (no photos to be shared yet, family eyes only :))
  • a turn towards selling more upcycled vintage
  • trying new foods
  • attempting to make pom-pom’s with a fork (I don’t recommend it)

Improvement #diy #patience #husbandhelped

I am ready for fall and loving the change in seasons. How bout you?


I am sure it’s no surprise that I LOVE period TV shows. I call all these “vintage TV” even though some are newly made and some are authentically old.

Here are my top 5 and where to watch them (turns out they are all on Netflix, read into that what you will):

1. The Bletchley Circle

bletchly circle

This show is short (3 episodes in the first season and 4 in the second season) but it is so worth the watch. This show has the great combination of being a period piece and also a mystery series. I love that the main characters are all women and they struggle with finding their voice in a male dominated world and also solve complex cases using their skills honed during WWII breaking codes and helping win the war in secret.

Find this series via Netflix.

2. Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries

miss fishers


I was so sad when my binge watching of this show came to an end. I LOVE this show. The show is set in 1920’s Australia. The costumes are AMAZING and the main character (Miss Fisher) is a feminist and all around awesome lady. This show is more laid back and fun than Bletchley Circle but no less intriguing. There are 2 seasons available now and I know the show got a 3rd season so hopefully that comes soon. I seriously LOVE this show, it has it all (it helps that I find the lead male detective very attractive as well-the clothes, the hat, the attitude-it all works for him).

This series can be watched via Netflix.

3. Call the Midwife

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until: 06/01/2015 - Programme Name: Call The Midwife 4 - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: ++Publication of this image is embargoed until 00.01 hours Tuesday January 6th 2015++ Nurse Trixie Franklin (HELEN GEORGE), Nurse Patsy Mount (EMERALD FENNELL), Sister Julienne (JENNY AGUTTER), Shelagh (LAURA MAIN), Sister Monica Joan (JUDY PARFITT), Sister Evangelina (PAM FERRIS), Nurse Barbara Gilbert (CHARLOTTE RITCHIE) - (C) Neal Street Productions - Photographer: Des Willie


I know most of you already watch this show (because everyone knows it’s awesome) but did you know it had a 4th season? I didn’t! I assumed it was done after 3 seasons(no spoiler) but it isn’t. I was so happy this returned. I love the stories of women and their strength. The show is set in the 1950’s and 60’s and follows a group of midwives (some nuns) and the poor town they serve. Life lessons are learned, women are helping women, women are using their natural strength to bring life into the world, and the world is changing all the time. This is a great show-enough said.

Watch this series via Netflix (for old seasons) and PBS (for the current season).


4. Mad Men

mad men


I know, I know-this show is on every list-but there is a reason.  This show is so awesome and stayed so awesome through it’s entire run. I recently watched the last season and final episode and I was NOT disappointed. The beauty, the costumes, the content, the way the episodes are shot-I could go on and on. Great show. Period.

Watch seasons 1-6 via Netflix (most recently season not available yet, at least legally:))

5. The Dick Van Dyke Show
dick van dyke 2
This show is so fun. Mary Tyler Moore looks amazing (and I crave her wardrobe) and Dick Van Dyke is at his best. D.V.D.’s profession on the show is variety show writer and he and his fellow writers offer great comedy. I love that this show features home life and work life. M.T.M. is a stay at home wife/mother and her character has depth and demands respect from her husband. Love this show from the 60’s.
Watch this series via Netflix.
Get watching!

There are some new wares up for sale in my Etsy vintage shop. Check out a quick peek:










Head over to the shop to see more and if you don’t follow me via Instagram-do. I post sneak peeks of wares to come and other fun things.

Have a great Wednesday!


My PMDD has been HORRIBLE this month, so I am going to share the burden with the internet :)

I have talked about PMDD previously here, check it out if you want.

So, this morning one of my co workers asked if I was feeling alright, I said “No. Worse than yesterday-but it’s fine” She asked if it was the flu or something. That’s when I decided to share my struggle of PMDD with her (I am not a very open person so this is something I am trying to get better about). My co-worker had never heard of PMDD. This was no surprising to me-most women haven’t, although it is a real shame. My hope in this post is to bring awareness to PMDD and hopefully help others not feel alone. 

PMDD is an interesting disorder, it changes almost everything about me for a few days every month. Every freaking month! I would not wish PMDD on my worst enemy. Keep in mind I am in the midst of it right now so this is all very raw.

This is what happens to my brain when the PMDD kicks in:

  • I hate myself: I start thinking I am fat, ugly, worthless, a disappointment, ungrateful, selfish, mean, a bad friend, a bad sister, a bad daughter, a bad wife, why would Husband even stay married to me…. and so on. Generally it is a deep spiral downward.
  • I gain about 2 sizes in water weight (which you can imagine makes all this even better)
  • I hate my home: more precisely I want to throw out everything I own and start living a minimalist life-which if you know me is insane b/c I have a ton of stuff and I LOVE bring surrounded by it all
  • I lash out at Husband: he really gets the brunt of my mood swings and irrational behavior, I can hide it from others.
  • I cry at ANYTHING: anything! I will start crying because I can’t get my sock off
  • I want to cut my body off and live only with a head b/c the constant nagging pain throughout my entire body
  • I want to be able to “just get over it and feel better”
  • I do not want to work or eat, I only want to sleep and unfortunately I cannot sleep-it is so restless

Wow, sounds like a lot of self pity doesn’t it? I do not mean it to-I just want to share what this is like and some of the symptoms that can come along with this disorder.

In bed at 215pm with Amy Poehler & Jolly Ranchers #thisisPMDD

A photo posted by Amy Iles-Moore (@thelittleredowl) on

A few things that help me cope:

  1. Period Tracker app (for Apple and for Android) This app helps me track my period and can even track intimacy and fertility if you like. I use this every time I go to the Doctor and they ask when my last period was. I LOVE it and it was FREE.
  2. Thinx Underwear–this is a new discovery and I cannot speak highly enough about them (they are NOT paying me or giving me anything to write this, I just found them and LOVE their products!). Not only is the underwear gorgeous, its amazing (keeps me light, dry, odor and worry free) but they also give back-what more could you ask for? I have 6 pairs with a 7th on the way. They are inexpensive in my book considering all the stress I have lost and all the comfort I have gained. Follow their inspirational Instagram here.
  3. A WONDERFUL Husband that gets my disorder, cuts me slack, ignores my crazy, and pushes me to stay busy and fight off the effects
  4. Keeping a sense of humor: I can make fun of myself and my mood swings and irrational thoughts-I think this helps lighten it a bit, at least for me
  5. Talking about it: keeping things a secret rarely makes them better-I believe that is true for this disorder too. If I can talk about it (with Husband, Mom, Sister, etc) I feel so much LESS CRAZY.

How in tune with your body are you? Do you pay attention to how you feel and what your body might be trying to tell you?



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