All posts in general information and events

you’re invited: academy awards party 2015.

 you're invited: oscar party 2015.

par·ty1  /ˈpärdē/

 noun  
1. a social gathering of invited guests, typically involving eating, drinking, and entertainment.
2. a word used by socially awkward individuals to describe something which happens in the privacy of their own home, usually with very few guests, typically involving decorations and much more food than is necessary.
Such was the case of my most hallowed minor holiday: you can have your Valentine’s Day and your Mardi Gras, so long as you leave me my Academy of Motion Picture Awards Party, a.k.a the Oscar Party.

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mochi cake.

mochi cake.

You guys: 9 people died over the new year in Japan, with 13 more people in serious condition due to mochi cake. Last year? 4 deaths, with 2 deaths the previous year. Seems as though mochi cake is so dense, so chewy, and so delicious that people consume it en masse this time of year, and sometimes too fast, which can lead to accidental choking.

Here’s the thing: I can see how choking could happen, but if you live in Japan and eat it all the time, I don’t know…be careful with your mochi, people, because it’s a dangerous and uncertain world out there. Japanese authorities recommend you chew it a bunch prior to swallowing, cut it into bite-size pieces before giving it to little kids or the elderly, and  – perhaps most importantly – never be alone with your mochi. Continue reading →

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resolutions for 2015 – because, resolutions.

resolutions, 2015.

my ultra-sophisticated office, also known as “the dining room.”

I witnessed a breakdown happen in mid-December, just before the holidays really kicked into gear; it was abrupt, tense, and filled with emotion…and it was on Instagram. I don’t know this food blogger/Instagrammer personally, but it seems she was overwhelmed by the pressure to live a perfect, beautifully-lit, gorgeously photographed “life” on social media. It seems as though she had a big plan to push her brand into the spotlight, but it had somehow fallen apart, dramatically and publicly, and now there’s zero trace of her anywhere – account, deleted – shortly after she posted all of this.

I can’t stop thinking about it. For me, it’s a cautionary tale, and it’s also more than that: If I’m 100% honest with myself and all of you, variations of these thoughts have crossed my mind, and I would bet (and I know) they’ve crossed some of yours – bloggers, Instagrammers, Guardians of the Social Media Galaxy – because pressure in this business? It’s everywhere, on all levels, and from all sides. Mostly, though, the pressure we place on ourselves is what takes us out. I should say here that I’m actually not winding up to have my own breakdown in this post: quite the opposite, in fact. So let’s chat about life. *pats chair* Continue reading →

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happy wedding, natalie!

happy wedding, natalie.

Happy Wedding Day, Natalie! You’re marrying the person you love the most today. The person who buys you tiny animal erasers and owl things, who plays potentially embarrassing video games with you, and encourages you to buy $40 worth of donuts at one time. That’s awesome; hard to find, certainly.

You have these dolls in your possession now. They were made in your image – and with love – by my mom (groom) and Rachael/Movita Beaucoup (bride). They were meticulously crafted (I have emails which can attest exactly how much thought was put into these) and flew across countries to get to you, briefly stopping here only so I could snap a few photos. I know you’ll keep them safe. They are our gift to you on what will be your best day ever. Continue reading →

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you’re invited: the wee one’s birthday party, 2014.

you're invited: the wee one's birthday, 2014.

The Wee One is officially 4 years old! Can you believe it? She’s got some nerve, growing up this fast. When I started the blog, she looked like this:

you're invited: the wee one's birthday, 2014.

chubbsters!

Now, she looks like this: grown up enough to be slightly awkward and self-conscious in posed photographs. To me, it’s just another delightful way in which she and I are identical. Continue reading →

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field notes: florida, 2014.

field notes: florida 2014.

Remember when I said I couldn’t wait to get back to making food and writing about it in this little space I have here? Yeah…so as it turns out, I don’t do that much baking and cooking on vacation without really making an effort to do so. I had no idea: in years past, it seemed like the natural thing to do.

This year was different; I blame the Amish. Hear me out. Continue reading →

how i survived whole30: 10 tips + what i learned.

how i survived the Whole30 Challenge.

If you read my last post, I [successfully, miraculously} completed the Whole30 Challenge.* It was grueling, and it was not so grueling. It was hard at times, easy at times, and I would totally do it again. Some of you wanted to know more about how I did it (probably because you can’t quite wrap your head around how I could live life sans grains, sugar, legumes, et cetera for an entire month), so I thought I’d make a little guidebook of sorts to doing it – should you be so inclined – and also what I learned from the process.

Whole 30 ultimately requires you to commit, plan, execute that plan, and be mindful at all times of what you are eating. Or not eating, as is often the case. It’s not about starvation or about “dieting”; rather, I gave exactly zero cares about calories during the program. I ate each meal until I was full, and then I waited – no almost no snacking – for the next meal. Rinse and repeat. It sounds like a “diet” at first, but it’s not really a diet as much as it’s just forcing you to be 100% clear on what you’re eating and when you’re eating it.

*I should note that in no way, shape or form did the Whole30 people sanction this. In fact, I would probably be on their list of the last people on earth they’d want to blog about it. Lest you were to think this is in any way sponsored, it is most certainly not. Just me subjecting my body to experiments.

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feast magazine, july 2014: halloumi bites (and what i’ve been doing)

feast magazine july 2014: halloumi bites.

(*scribble scribble crumple*)  Did you hear that? It’s me writing things!

Apparently my whole entire being felt the need to take a break for *ahem* a month or something. It wasn’t planned, but looking back, it should have been: it seems as though there are two key things I repeatedly forget in both blogging and in life, which are:

  • I can’t actually do everything all at once, and
  • There are not unlimited hours in the day; wishing does not actually make that so.

Whoops.

So, good news, I have not been kidnapped Misery-style by a Kathy Bates-like person, nor have I lost use of my fingers. Yay? I’ll tell you what I have been up to, though, if you’re interested. Continue reading →

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bake my cake 2014 competition entry: the bread pudding cake.

movita beaucoup's bake my cake 2014: the bread pudding cake.

Well, friends, it’s that time of year again: one of my favorite people/bloggers, Rachael (aka Movita Beaucoup) turns another year older, and we all get to celebrate by making ridiculous cakes in her honor. I’ve done two cakes so far for her: this crazy miniaturized bakeshop thing and this cereal-turned-into-donuts one, both of which were incredibly fun to make, even if they didn’t win. And they didn’t win, people: I manage to lose every. single. time.
This year, the theme is crappy cakes: all we had to do to is enter a crappy cake into the competition. As luck would have it, I’m pretty crappy at making a crappy cake, because my need to do everything correctly? let’s just say it doesn’t translate that well into screwing up a cake purposefully. I’m also prone to intense overthinking, and as the translation of “crappy” could mean myriad things, I struggled to interpret what she meant. Crappy like bad? crappy like gross to eat? Crappy to whom and in what way? On and on it went. Continue reading →

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holiday house tour + i test-drive my #honeybakedholiday goodies.

honeybaked holiday

Sponsored post experiment time! Round one, as it were: in this one, I’m testing out all the gifts HoneyBaked Ham sent me as part of the “stress-free holiday” package (we’ll see about that!) and giving you my (very honest) opinion of each thing. We don’t eat our ham until Christmas night, so I’ll probably be doing something fun with the leftovers and posting that as well, après-ham feast. Let’s get right to it: Continue reading →

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