Friday, October 31, 2014

Remembering Mayor Thomas Menino, 1924-2014

Boston Marathon finish line, April 2014

Boston University, March 2014

With Oprah Winfrey at Harvard's Commencement ceremonies, May 2013

Mission Hill School, November 2013

St. Patricks Day Political Breakfast at the Ironworkers Local 7 Hall, March 2001

Endorsing Ed Markey, May 2013

Boston waterfront, May 2000

At his office, November 1997

We lost a great one yesterday.  Former Mayor Thomas Menino was our city's longest-serving leader, from 1993-2013.  He epitomized strength long before the Boston Strong movement.  Likely the Mayor that we JUGs will remember most since we all grew up in the area, he truly made a huge impact on the lives of most Bostonians.  He has passed on as a legend and we send only happy memories and support to his family.  We are glad he is no longer in pain and will continue to smile thinking of him and seeing his name sprinkled throughout the city, a visionary that changed Boston for the better.

- Meredith

all photos from

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Ain't Nothin' Wrong With Feelin' Blue

Royal Blue Living Room

Royal Blue Bed Room

Blue Bedroom Wall

Blue Hallway

Blue Entry

Yesterday a friend of mine Instagramed a picture of her new home office with the most gorgeous bright blue walls...and now I'm totally jealous! I can't get this vibrant color off my mind! It feels so cozy and adds such a dynamic pop to a room, don't you think? 

Would you or have you painted a room bright blue? What do you think?

- Suzanne

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Daily Read: The Kind Life

Did you just say you've never heard of The Kind Life?! AS IF!

The Kind Life has been actress Alicia Silverstone's healthy living dairy for the past few years and even resulted two books - The Kind Diet and The Kind Mama. Alicia combines conscious, healthy living with environmental sustainability and animal rights to create a blog about how to do everything without hurting anyone or anything else. Though the overall blog is not political, she still manages to tackle the tough issues like fracking, climate change, and animal slaughter for leather production (seriously, did you know that many soccer cleats around the world are made of kangaroo leather? yikes). Alicia also rounds up some great vegan recipes like vegan shepard's pie and sweet potato black bean enchiladas. I definitely want to get a copy of The Kind Diet ....adding it to the Christmas wishlist ASAP - it is a perfect follow up to the J+A Whole Food Detox I completed in September.

- Cameron

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

JUGs Approved: This Is Life with Lisa Ling

So I've only seen three of the five aired episodes to date, but I'm already prepared to say that I am a huge fan of CNN's new show, This Is Life.  Renowned reporter Lisa Ling (who, fun fact, delivered my college commencement address!) produces and hosts the investigatory program that focuses on various life choices, often questionable and unusual, within sub-cultures of the US.  Her journalism is raw, with an early episode diving into the serious stuff right away, painkiller addiction within affluent Mormon communities in Utah.  Needless to say, the topics are incredibly real and moving.  I'll leave everything to your own interpretations, but there is no doubt that this show will open up your mind and awareness to the candor shown.  I find This Is Life a great outlet to expand horizons and to learn!  New episodes air on CNN Sunday nights at 10pm, with past episodes available on demand.

- Meredith

Monday, October 27, 2014

The Week of October 27th


Is November seriously creeping up on us?!  We can't believe it.  Any thoughts on what will be the big costume this year?  Here are some updates we wanted to share:

It's crockpot season!  Be sure to follow these guidelines.

Have to fix a bad mood?  Check out certain foods to eat according to how you're feeling.

Still in need of a halloween costume?  These little divas and divos could easily be translated to adult versions.

BostInno presented holiday events for the upcoming week.

This parody of Matthew McConaughey's Lincoln commercial was dead on.

Have you seen the steamy new show, The Affair, on Lifetime?  It is not one to miss.

For that inner peace we all desperately need, you can read up on meditation here.

Moving soon? (Or bookmark for next year!) One of our favorite Boston blogger gals, Ali, outlined how to stay organized during the moving process.

Did you get an iPhone6?  Be sure to read about how to use Apple Pay here.

Google is always a step ahead, especially with email.

Last week, Emily made some good points in relation to how to deal with anxiety and how to put travel first, both important topics.

Do you have any Halloween plans to share?  We'd love to know what you're dressing up as, be sure to comment or tweet at us with costume ideas and/or plans!

Make it a great one!

- Meredith

Friday, October 24, 2014

Giveaway: Set of 12 Greeting Cards from Proper Pen

Happy Friday, gals! Seems like a great day for a giveaway, doesn't it?

Today we are pleased to announce we will be giving away a set of 12 handmade greeting cards from Proper Pen. Incase you missed it we featured Proper Pen owners, Lisa and Bridget, on this Wednesday's Who's That Gal. Together they are an unbeatable team of besties producing some amazing work. 

To enter, leave a comment below and follow us on twitter as we will announce the contest winner next friday at noon. Good luck!

Psst, even if you aren't the lucky we winner, we've got something for you. Enter the code JUGS20 when checking out of the Proper Pen shop to receive 20% off your total order.

- Suzanne

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Recap of JUGsNightOut

On Monday, a fabulous group of bloggers, friends, and entrepreneurs gathered at Shake the Tree in Boston's North End to celebrate a night out hosted by your's truly! We had an absolute blast shopping at our favorite clothing, jewelry, and decor boutique while sipping on sangria and munching on arancini from Bacco, quesadillas from Urban Cantina, wraps from Going Bananas, and sweets from Bread + Butter (yeah, we definitely exceeded our calorie goal for the day, sorry PactApp)! And we know that shopping can be stressful sometimes (hmmm should I get two of these cute stackable rings, or three?!?!?!?!!!)...luckily, Exhale was there to provide back massages and mini reflexology sessions.

It was a full house, and it was great to see some of our fellow Boston Bloggers in the mix, including Annie White, Boston Day Book, Danielle KempeDear FriendElizabeth Swartz, Faith Towers DesignFeathers and Stripes, Fenway Fashionista, Lifestyle of a FashionistaNotes on Lifestyle by Georgina, Prim & Propah, Rentwhich, and I am probably missing a bunch more (please let me know in the comments)!

We had so much fun that we already have some plans in the works for another event! Check back for details.

- Cameron

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Daily Read: Happily Grey


Nashville gal Mary Seng of Happily Grey is one who exhibits a natural ease.  Her style is simple and she is seriously a pro with showing an idyllic juxtaposition of high and low items into one photo shoot-worthy look, ironically, full of color!  Mary has grown her brand to new levels in such a short amount of time!  She can rock a cape, a tomboy baseball hat and the highest of heels like no other.  Happily Gray is sure to be the next blog you bookmark as your daily read!








Which look above of Mary's is your fave?  Comment below!

- Meredith

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

3 Halloween Costumes You Already Own

Looking to dress to kill-it with the boys? Sandy is always a trusty costume for those not looking to break the bank. Bust out your pleather leggings, some heels, a cute black top and red lipstick and you're done! Acceptable costume attempt for the lazy gal, and totally hot. 

Crop Top //  Leggings //  Earrings // Lipstick // Pumps

Need to dress up but show zero skin and play it super safe? Rosie the Riveter is a great option and basically just requires you to make a Canadian tuxedo look a little bit more girly. This outfit is a favorite of mine for any corporate party where the last you want to do is look inappropriate or like you don't know how to have fun.

And lastly there's Katie, the hot girl from Wet Hot American Summer. This costume shows off your humor and taste in movies, all while contributing minimal effort and zero dollars. If you don't want to be Katie but have some other camp-y uniform ideas, really anyone from this movie's cast will be a hit at the party. 

What are you dressing up as for Halloween 2014? 

- Suzanne

Monday, October 20, 2014

The Week of October 20th

C A R E E R  &  I N S P I R A T I O N
This trailer for the to-be-released documentary, Dream, Girl: The Documentary, gave me chills. Can't wait till it comes out!

"It's not the product, it's the person." Listen to the first segment of this NPR talk with the founder of Super Business Girl, 11 year old Asia Newson, and you may learn a thing or two about entrepreneurship.

"Get rid of excuses." This and other tips for How To Succeed at Something You Know Nothing About

OMG I want this

Are the J.Crew models drunk? This is hilarious.

Our friend Anna and blogger behind Dear Friend was featured in the Globe! Congratulations, Anna!

A R T S  &  E N T E R T A I N M E N T
Have you guys check out This American Life's latest project, Serial? It's my latest addiction and is a podcast that unfolds one story a season. This season follows the story of Adnan Syed, who was accused of killing his high school ex-girlfriend back in 1999, and has been in prison for the last 15 years. 

All the stars showed up for the debut showing of the Alexander Wang x HM line. What did you guys think of all the neoprene, spandex, mesh and mini backpacks? What, if any item, will you be first in line to buy?

That's all folks! Have a great week and don't forget to share your own updates with us via twitter at @justusgalsbos.

- Suzanne

Image via Nylon Pinksy

Friday, October 17, 2014

Review of Pact App

 I am NOT one of those people that loves working out. I like veggies (especially after learning how to prepare them during the J+A Whole Detox), but I still don't lovvvve them. All in all, I could use extra help staying healthy. This is where Pact App comes in. Pact encourages you to bet on yourself in three ways: eating full servings of vegetables, tracking your food, and working out. On the app you make a goal of how many times a week you will do those things, and you will earn money every time you complete one of the goals you set. However, if you skip the gym or a healthy meal, money will be deducted!

Why this works for me: Today is Friday, one of the hardest days to get motivated to go to the gym, but I committed to go to the gym 4 times this week, and so far, I've only gone twice. I don't want to lose any money, so guess what, I'm going to work out today. The possible loss of $5 is just enough motivation to get me to log out of Netflix and go on a run or head to the gym. This. is. awesome.

Have you tried Pact yet? What do you think?

- Cameron

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Fall into Fringe

poncho // $148 vs. $42
booties // $188 vs. $150
lariat // $111 vs. $51
throw // $79 vs. $35
crossbody bag // $195 vs. $39

Maybe it's the foliage, or just the reminder that cooler temps mean layering, but fall tends to influence me to look at fringed items.  You have a statement from one simple addition to a piece and have automatic movement. Today we've rounded up items at both high and low to warm up your wardrobe and hubitat alike!  Comment or tweet us your favorite item(s)!

- Meredith

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Who's That Gal: Proper Pen

Have you ever dreamed of owning your own company with your best friend? We had the chance to talk to two lovely stationary enthusiasts, Bridget and Lisa of Proper Pen, who are doing just that. Read on to learn how they made the jump from recent college graduates to business owners...

Name: Bridget Sweeney
Age: 25
Hometown: Oceanside, NY
Current 'Hood: New Haven, CT
Educational Background: BA in English, Binghamton University - December 2010

Name: Lisa Cannizzaro
Age: 25
Hometown: Oceanside, NY
Current 'Hood: Nashua, NH
Educational Background: BS in Mechanical Engineering, Cornell University - May 2011

First, we love your stationery! Can you tell us a little about your art and design background?
We first met in a high school cartooning class, and as the only two girls we formed an immediate bond. Over the next several years we continued to take art classes and develop our work; even attending Pratt Portfolio Day in the hopes of applying to a great Fine Art school. While our paths led us to different states for college and in different directions, (Lisa majoring in Mechanical Engineering and I in English), our love of art and our friendship has never faltered. Our styles are inherently different. Lisa creates bright and colorful illustrations, while I tend to use darker contours in my hand lettering; but we lend our personalities to the eclectic mix of our products, and I wouldn’t have it any other way!

Second, we very much admire you both starting your own business at such a young age. What inspired you both to do so this summer? 

Initially, we had some luck selling our individual handmade goods on Etsy, but wanted our unique designs printed so we could grow our brand and leave us open to wholesale opportunities. Proper Pen has been a way for us to collaborate creatively and stay connected despite the distance. This summer the timing was right to launch our curated collection!

As best friends living in two different states, what does an average day at the “office” look like for you both? Are responsibilities split evenly or do you each have your own set of responsibilities within the company and for managing the online shop?

We converse daily over email but also make sure to schedule regular phone calls and come prepared with an agenda. Typically, we set our goals for the week and divide them up based on preference. While we alternate tasks, I particularly enjoy staging & photographing our products. To make things easier we also both have inventory to fulfill orders and handle the shipping process as quickly as possible!

Where do you look for inspiration for your work?

I often derive inspiration from exploring great shops on Etsy. I love the curated collections that change daily on the home page. To me it’s like a museum of great handmade work, often tied together by just one color or theme. For our “Something Blue” collection, blue, silver and gold will be the pervading colors.

What has been the most rewarding part of starting Proper Pen?

Knowing that our cards are a vehicle for conveying meaning and spreading joy is the most rewarding part of starting Proper Pen. We recently fulfilled an order for a bride who purchased a “Maid of Honor” card. The idea that in some small way we’re making her wedding a little more special makes it all worth it!

What is the best advice you’ve ever received about following your passion and what advice would you give our readers who want to start their own businesses?

Research everything! Think from the perspective of a potential customer. Make sure the payment process isn’t too complicated, that your shop is mobile friendly, that you won’t have trouble spelling the company name when searching for it...etc. But most importantly, do what you love and you won’t regret it. If you have a passion, pursue it to the ends of the earth.

What’s next for Proper Pen?

We’re looking forward to rolling out our Holiday line, introducing more notecard boxed sets and designing for our “Something Blue” wedding collection. Stay tuned!

F U N   Q U E S T I O N S:

Item(s) in your office you can’t live without:
Fresh flowers (for mood lifting and photo staging)
Micron Ink Pen Set (the most precise for hand-lettering!)
Pottery Barn Photo Carousel (The perfect way to store & display our cards)

3 websites you read every day: 
Radio BDC - Love to listen to new music and hear about what is going on around Boston while I work.
Etsy - It’s great to see what crafts other people are doing!
Pinterest - Perfect place to organize inspiration, and collect things we think are cool or interesting.

On your playlist this week:
Jenny Lewis - The Voyager
Vance Joy - Riptide

The next city you want to visit: 
Even though Lisa and I have both been, I would love to go back to San Francisco and set up shop at some fun craft shows!

Currently reading:  
Gone Girl 

To learn more about Bridget and Lisa of Proper Pen follow them on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.

Photos via Proper Pen

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Local Gem: The Foundry

1 / 2 / 3

The Foundry on Elm in Davis Square is the perfect venue for a fall meal or drinks. While, Foundry isn't new, it is definitely the season to revisit this Somerville favorite. It features a warm, cozy, atmosphere while still being chic and trendy. Adding to the cozy feeling of the restaurant are its seasonal menu items - such as the pumpkin pizza - which I highly recommend!!! They also boast a fantastic beer list including my absolute favorite: Newburyport Brewing Company Plum Island Belgian. After a beer at Foundry, stop by Saloon next door to satisfy your whiskey craving.

Since the JUGs all live downtown, it is easy to overlook nearby hotspots like Davis Square, but poutine, local grass-fed burgers, and beer in mason jars, will definitely motivate us to hop on the red line over to Foundry this fall!

- Cameron

Monday, October 13, 2014

Week of October 13


C O L U M B U S  D A Y

Have the day off? Now is the perfect opportunity to check a few things off your Fall to do list. Or, you can sleep in and finally catch up on all of the fall show premiers. Any favorites so far? We've heard a few good things about How to Get Away with Murder, The Affair, and Blackish.


We are excited to join our friends over at Follain on Thursday evening for their event with Snap Top Market. Hope to see you there!

Many times, beauty comes from the inside out, and we are loving The Skeptic's Guide to Meditation as a way to get started on a mindset makeover. 

And....what the eff is raw shampoo?


This post from The Kitchn is a serious wallet saver - 10 Tips for Creating a Grocery Budget and Sticking to It. They're also teaching us how to cook our favorite fall vegetables.

And now that we've gotten a sneak preview of how awesome Society of Grownups is, we are definitely going to sign up for our financial checkups at their Brookline office - the first is free!

Oh ya,  don't forget to order Goldfinch from the library for this month's book club


We are thrilled that #JUGsNightOut sold out in two days - but if you didn't get tickets, definitely get on the waitlist in case extra spaces open up. Also, our after party is going to be at a TBD North End location. We just got the news that Goody Glover's is closing and can't host us that night, sadly. 

Have a great week.
- Cameron