May 2, 2017

Currently: April 2017

Currently April 2017 on Shutterbean.com

I almost wrote 2016 when I typed April 2017. I’m also annoyed at myself that this is being posted in May and not in April. But, I’m trying to get over that. I think that sums up where my head is at right now!

The flowers here in California start popping off in April. We’ve had quite a show. The leaves are on most of the trees now and the birds are out chirping. The turkeys are chatting and the jackrabbits are running around on our hill.

April was a travel month for me! There was a lot of traveling which through my schedule off quite a bit. I haven’t been in the kitchen as much as I wanted, but I got to recharge, rest and regroup. Travel is the best way for me to keep my creativity alive.

So, let’s see. How was April?

Currently April 2017

Currently April 2017 on Shutterbean.com

Inspired By:

Travel always inspires me.  I really need to see new surroundings or else my creativity suffers. Also, my MIND SUFFERS. I feel cagey when I haven’t had an adventure. It’s a byproduct of living in the house I grew up in. I want to GOOOOOOOOO EXPLORE!

This April I went to Monterey with my family for Easter and then flew to Nashville (to visit Joy!)  and road-tripped to her house in New Orleans. There was a lot of movement in April!  I’m normally not away from home for that long, so April kind of went by in a blur. It was great to be with family near the beach. We did something new and it was FUN!!!!!!!!

My Everyday Life: Week 16 on Shutterbean.com

During my trip to Nashville, I made an effort to talk to strangers.

I convinced Marguerite from Montreal at the airport bar in Denver to try ginger beer. She loved it.  I also found out that I went to the same art school as a bartender named Nick who served me a few “Punch Drunk” cocktails in New Orleans.

The world is small even though it doesn’t feel that way sometimes. These are the things I like about travel.


timbuk2 backpack shutterbean

During this trip, I used a new backpack and my roller suitcase for my flights.


How did I ever travel without a backpack? My shoulders were like WHAAAAAAAAT IS THIS??? We’re not sore???!!  The best part about this backpack is that I knew where everything was when I needed to get items out. The straps didn’t cut into my shoulders.  It cut down so much travel anxiety!

My Everyday Life: Week 16 on Shutterbean.com

Pen-pals– you guys!!! I am so touched by all of your postcards and letters. THANK YOU! I am so honored that you have all taken time out of your schedule to do something nice for someone else (me!). A lot of you have mentioned that you started writing more letters to other people as a result. <— AMAZING!

I’ve been getting letters from Norway! New Zealand! France! England!!!  Honestly, that is just unreal to me. There are also so many awesome people from all over the US that have written me too.  A big should out to all of the readers from the Bay Area who have written!  I think we should probably figure out a get together soon. How does that sound?

Here’s my address:

Tracy Shutterbean

P.O. Box 604

San Anselmo, CA 94979

I occasionally share some of the cool letters I get on my Instagram Stories.

You can follow me @shutterbean

My Everyday Life: Week 16 on Shutterbean.com


Big Little Lies. Did you watch it?!!??  It haunted me for a few weeks. I really love the soundtrack. We went to Monterey (where it’s filmed) a few days after we finished watching the series.

I’m behind on The Feud & Girls.  Again…TRAVEL.


I checked out too many books at the library this month. I also didn’t return a lot. DANGIT. I’d like to get better at what I check out…I mean, actually reading things on time instead of having to renew too many time before it’s too late.

Currently on my nightstand:

Mindful Games

Do the Work

Trader Vic’s Kitchen Kibitzer

I Hate to Housekeep 

I’m super excited about this new David Sedaris book that comes out this month. I love when he reads from his diaries on his book tours. His observations are comic gold.

My Everyday Life: Week 15 on Shutterbean.com

Thinking About:

My head’s in the clouds for Summer. We go to Tahoe every year with my family. I CANNOT WAIT FOR THAT. I think we’ll try to go to Santa Cruz and LA. Can I make it up to Oregon or Idaho in the Summer? That’s the question I’m figuring out. I’m also anxious to start working out in my front yard garden.

Thinking about doing some Instagram Live/Facebook live sessions.

(what would you want to see?)

I’ve been experimenting with Instagram Live. I randomly turned it on one morning recently and had people tell me their names and spent about 30 minutes writing them live (with commentary).  People asked questions. I told people what associations I had with their names. It was fun! I did it standing up which was weird, so I have to figure out a better setup. That picture above there shows all of the names I wrote on my first session and here’s my second session:

(press play)


Listening To:

Agnes Obel. September Song (is my fave) is from the show Big Little Lies and it’s a good one! I’ve had her on non-stop for the past few weeks.

Also— love her songs Familiar and Stone.

Also if you are having writer’s block, I suggest listening to a little Harry Belafonte. It puts my brain in a good mood.

Finished listening to S-Town!!!! SO good. Did you finish it too? Can we talk about it??

Also- Listening to George Carlin (checked out from the library). It’s amazing to see how much his stuff still stands up after t


Dream Life:

I had a dream when I was on my Nashville trip that a tree fell down on our hill. It hit nothing….but it came out of nowhere. Like, I didn’t even remember a tree being there to fall down in that spot. Dreams are weird. I also woke up that night to a gigantic thunderstorm, so maybe that had something to do with it. There’s definitely some Oregon streets in my dream life. Sometimes my subconscious gets stuck in old college stories.

I went through a few nights with some crazy night sweats. Whoa, dude. 37-year-old hormones are interesting. Is this TMI? I don’t know. Can’t we just be real and not pretend like our bodies don’t age?  Also, will someone please tell me if electrolysis is something worth doing? K, thanks, BYE.

My Everyday Life Week 16 on Shutterbean.com


I ate/drank too much on my trips but you know what? THAT’S COOL. YOLO.

Asparagus season!!!!!!  My favorite way to eat asparagus is simple! Roasted…with parmesan and a squeeze of lemon. But maybe I’ll make an asparagus soup when I have a surplus and I need to make something fast with them.

I’m starting to switch to gin in my cocktails. Bourbon is taking second place.


GRILL SEASON HAS BEGUN. Time to grill some pizza. 

Here’s a page from my bullet journal:

Currently April 2017 on Shutterbean.com

A self-portrait for April:

My Everyday Life: Week 15 on Shutterbean.com

SO! Tell me what’s up with you! 

How was your April?

What do you want to do in May?

  • Lisa

    TRACY! Your April bujo spread is *heart eyes emoji*.

    April is a wonderful month for me as I found out that I got into a grad school program for my masters. Counselling Psychology here I come. (I remember checking in with another ‘currently’ and having so much anxiety…)

    S-Town was amazing! Heartbreaking, shocking, and so richly drawn. Reminded me a bit of Midnight In the Garden of Good & Evil, though that may in part just be because of the accents 😉

    Also, it’s 745am here in Vancouver and that cocktail is making me long for happy hour – can’t come soon enough!

    All the best in May, Tracy. Let’s slay our summers.

    • Tracy

      oh my goodness! Congrats, Lisa. That’s so rad. You should be so proud of yourself.
      Yes yes about S-town being a little bit like Midnight in the Garden of Good & Evil. I also thought it reminded me of the first season of True Detective (OMG I WAS HOOKED ON THAT SHOW!!).

  • Shannan

    I am spending way too much time these days trying to clarify in my brain whether it is 2016 or 2017.

  • Rebeca

    April seemed to fly by, I find it hard to believe it’s May already! This month is filled with birthdays (I’m turning 32 this week! Where has time gone?!) and I predict a lot of baking in my near future.

    I’m also eating asparagus like it’s my job, I can’t get enough. And probiotic-rich foods because I had to take antibiotics for a mean sinus infection.

    I have too many books sitting on my nighstand waiting to be read. I didn’t get to it last month because see above.

    I had a CRAZY dream last week. My ex’s mum tried to suffocate me with a pillow… I woke up sweating. Dreams are weird, indeed.

    • Tracy

      You can also take a probiotic supplement- or kombucha! Antibiotics are crazy, huh?
      I wonder what your dream means! They’re wild, aren’t they?
      Have a great birthday!

      • Rebeca

        Oh, yes, I’m also taking a probiotic supplement. Kombucha is hard to come by where I am (small town in the north of Spain) and I’ve thought about making it myself, but I find it really intimidating for some reason.
        My dream probably means the woman never liked me, which is me putting it lightly, lol. But considering I haven’t seen her in almost 3 years, I don’t know why she popped in my dreams.
        Thank you for the birthday wishes! My niece (3 years old) says she’s going to get me a baby doll, so that means it’s going to be a great one, right?

  • Jessica

    I am with Lisa about your April spread in your bujo… all of the heart eyes. I wish I could create stuff like that myself, but I am way too much of an inside-the-lines kind of girl, and way too much of a perfectionist to make something that gloriously all over the place. My brain just doesn’t work like that… can anyone else relate? But it sure looks good when you do it!

    If you decide to do a Bay area meet up, I would love to come! I am an Idaho native now living in Santa Cruz, and a longtime follower of your blog. I hope you decide to do it!

    Also, S-Town… amazing! I didn’t expect to like it, but it also reminded me of True Detective, and it just fed all my gossipy needs.

    I, too, traveled in April, but nothing as glamorous as you. My family took a short trip to Arizona to introduce my husband’s grandparents to our now 5-month old son. Traveling is sure different with a baby in tow!

    Anyway, love the posts! Hope you have an awesome May too!

    • Rebeca

      I can totally relate, Jessica. I see what Tracy does and love the way it looks, but I’m too much of a perfectionist to pull it off.

  • Kimberly

    Wow, I loved this post! It’s so fun to see how others are starting off spring and summer-love your travels and LOVE that travel backpack 🙂

  • dana828

    Why is it that, as a parent, April and May seem like a blur on the way to summer break?? There’s so much packed into these two short months! My head is spinning..
    I love all the pictures of your recent travels. I, too, crave adventure and feel like I’m stuck in a rut when I’m stuck at home for too long. Christmas vacation seems so long ago, and there are still 10 weeks til we hit the road for our summer vacation and that seems like SO LONG to wait! It’ll be here before I know it, though, so in the meantime I’ll occupy myself with logistics and planning and shopping for things we’ll need. That’ll help, right?
    I’ve been holding off on S-Town, thinking I may save it for vacation listening. I’ve been listening to My Favorite Murder (thanks Joy!) obsessively and totally loving it. Staying sexy and not getting murdered.
    Cinco de Mayo Is coming! Luckily we will have family in town so I have an excuse to bust out the grill and make a big Mexican spread. Pineapple-jalapeño margaritas required.
    Have the best month, and Happy early Mother’s Day!!

  • Carly

    All I have to say is that your self-portrait is stunning. Those collar bones!

    Happy gin season! I happily bought tonic last week to kick it off.

  • Rosemarie

    May is bringing all the things.My mother in law and her husband are visiting us from Germany for 2 weeks! I don’t speak German. They don’t speak English. I’m so excited for my husband and my 2 little boys to get to spend time with them. But nervous about having house guests for 2 whole weeks that don’t speak english.

    I started a new job working from home. So during half their visit I will be retreating to the basement office for most of the day. I’m sort of happy, but also worried about how it will look.

    She will be here over Mother’s Day and my birthday. That’s cool, right?

    Really excited about having a week off with them here and my kids. I hope we can explore some fun areas together.

    Please send some good vibes my way. And all the booze.

  • libby

    Love your use of “self portrait” instead of “selfie”. I like it, it’s moody.
    I wrote you a letter this month and I saw my name in your IG stories. I feel like I say this all the time but your stories are my faaaavorite stories.

    • Tracy

      THANK YOU, LIBBY!! Look out for some mail coming at ya soon!

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