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Category: fab faves

  1. Friday, August 30, 2019

    Friday Show & Tell: I’m Dreaming of a Toyota Sequoia + Other Awesome Finds

    The number of things I want to share in today’s Show and Tell is a clear indicator that it’s been too long since I’ve done one of these posts. Here we go!

    The Sequoia is the first car to make me consider ditching my minivan.

    2019 Toyota Sequoia in various places in New EnglandJust a few of the places we took the Sequoia this summer! Top left: Cape Cod National Seashore, Provincetown, MA; Top Right: Sleepy Hollow Cemetery in Concord, MA, Author’s Ridge in the background; Bottom Right: Off roading on my in-law’s property in New Hampshire; Bottom Right: Centerville on Cape Cod

    This summer, Toyota leant us a Sequoia Platinum for our New England vacation. I was excited to give it a try, but had no idea just how much we would love this car. It is honestly the first car that made me go, “Huh, maybe I can live without my minivan.” It’s about time I tell you about the car, given the level of fondness I have for it! Why did we like this car so much? Let me count the ways…

    Awesome safety features:

    The technology around safety is really well done, with lots of customization possibilities. Note: I accidentally got myself stuck driving down Commercial Street in Provincetown, MA. This was perhaps one of the most stressful driving situations I’ve ever found myself in. It was like trying to fit a grown man’s foot into a baby bootie. However, I was completely able to make it through that crazy street stuffed with cars and people, thanks to helpful beeps if I got close to something as well as a surprisingly tight turning radius on such a large SUV. If I could drive the Sequoia here, I can drive it anywhere.

    Commercial Street in Provincetown, MAThat is Commercial Street. I think my heart rate is still coming down a month later.

    4WD + the ability to fit lots of people and stuff.

    I love camping here in California and visiting Joshua Tree as often as possible. As a result, we’ve forced our minivan down roads that it had no business driving down. We would love to have a 4WD vehicle but as yet haven’t found one that we liked that could also fit 3 kids plus 2 cellos. The Sequoia can do all of that. 

    Storage space in the back of the 2019 Toyota SequoiaI fit those four suitcases and definitely still had space to pack in more stuff…and that was with the third row up! Two cello cases would be no problem!

    So much space.

    Let’s go back to the whole space thing again. The third row was just as comfortable as the middle or front seats, even for adults. And even when we had tons of stuff in the car, we still had room to fit lots of people comfortably.

    Random awesome stuff.

    The sound system was amazing. The front seat had double visors so you can block sun on the side and in front at the same time. Heat warmers in the front and middle seats, plus vented seats in the front to help cool you down on a hot day. Buttons that moved the seats up and down in the way back. All the bells and whistles. 

    Honestly, this might be the next car we get. I’ll keep you posted! Thank you, Toyota!!

    Enamelware Jackpot!

    Stack of Crow Canyon Enamelware, white with blue rim

    I’ve been looking for pretty white enamelware with a thin colored edge for ages. West Elm would carry it sometimes, but it always sold out quickly. Then, while in Provincetown on Cape Cod, we went to a wonderful home store called Utilities, filled to the brim with great finds, including the enamelware of my dreams, made by Crow Canyon Home. I bought a bunch of plates and some serving bowls, then got home and discovered they have a website, which means I will be buying more. (Seriously, I need more bowls, they are awesome.) Definitely go check them out.

    Cedar Grilling Wraps for Cooking Fish

    Salmon cooking on cedar grilling wraps on a gas grill

    A few weeks ago I put grilled salmon on my weekly menu, and my friend Sharon commented on the post saying she had just used cedar grilling wraps the night before and loved them. When I went to Sprouts to buy the fish, I picked up a couple packs myself. And I am officially joining the “I heart cedar wraps” club with Sharon. 

    Why cedar wraps? Well, you’re not really supposed to cook with aluminum foil because aluminum leaches into your food at high temperatures. But buying the cedar planks feels wasteful as you can only use them once. These cedar wraps are the best of both worlds! I have used them twice now for salmon, just laying the salmon right on top of the cedar “paper” and throwing it on the grill. 

    You can buy the wraps on Amazon (and actually there are a ton of brands to choose from on there), but you may also be able to find them at your local market like I did, most likely near the butcher. 

    I love Lori Gottlieb’s book and everyone should read it.

    Cover of "Maybe You Should Talk To Someone" and photo of the author Lori Gottlieb

    Looking for a great book? Go read “Maybe You Should Talk to Someone: A Therapist, HER Therapist, and Our Lives Revealed” by Lori Gottlieb. She is a fantastic writer and I found myself highlighting things left and right, something I rarely do. So, so good. Enjoy!


  2. Thursday, April 25, 2019

    Show and Tell: IKEA Kitchen Finds + Live Music You Need to See

    I went to IKEA last month and found a few things for my kitchen that I am loving. And then I bought a bunch of concert tickets that I am pumped about, so I think a Show and Tell post is in order! 

    IKEA Kitchen Finds: Steak Knives, Dish Towels, Hand Whisk, Cheese Grater

    IKEA Kitchen Finds

    I haven’t been to IKEA in ages, but I went with the kids recently to get some new bedding for Anna’s room. I came home with a small pile of really awesome kitchen stuff, so I feel I must share.

    • Cheese Grater. IKEA made this type of cheese grater years ago. I’ve had mine forever and it’s still going strong. I even gave it to everyone for Christmas one year. Then IKEA stopped selling it for a while, which was sad, but now it’s back on the shelves! I’m so excited because every kitchen needs one of these. Reasons this grater is awesome: it doesn’t take up a ton of storage space, non-slip surface on the bottom, there are two grate size options, the container comes with a lid for storing cheese in the fridge, and it is only FIVE DOLLARS. This is, in my opinion, the best cheese grater around. Click here to buy.
    • Steak Knives. These little knives are only $5 a piece and work great. Here’s the thing, I got some cheap-o steak knives when we got married that were marvelous, and I’m down to only one left. I don’t want to spend $100/knife (or even $20/knife, really), but every cheap steak knife I’ve met since stinks. Not this IKEA knife. It’s great. Not quite as marvelous as my free set of Farberware steak knives, but close. ūüėČ Click here to buy.
    • Dish Towels. Okay, so, I bought these black dish towels and these grey/blue striped dish towels. They are exactly the same except for the color/pattern. The fabric finish is different from other dish towels at IKEA. These towels are pure magic and legit dry things off completely. Not a speck of water left behind. Plus, they aren’t white, so, you know, they don’t look like crap after a couple of uses. I ended up ordering more online and have a nice stash that will hopefully last me until I die.  
    • Hand Held Whisk. This is so random, but this whisk is like those antique hand held whisks that existed before hand blenders came along. And I love it. And you can put it in the dishwasher. It’s kinda bulky, but, whatever, I’m just glad IKEA brought the old-school hand blender back! Click here to buy.
    • Enameled Steel Grey Dishes with Blue Trim. I didn’t actually buy these dishes because I’m looking for white enameled dishes with red or black trim, however these were completely adorable. So, if you like grey and blue, you should totally get them because I feel like someone should. You can get bowls, plates and/or mugs
    • Prize Wheel Game. This is one of those wheel of fortune spinny wheel things. No, it has nothing to do with the kitchen. Yes, it is completely awesome and fun to spin and perfect for practicing cello with your 7-year-old son. I’ve told two teachers about this and two teachers have since bought it. So, you know, if you have a need for a prize wheel, here you go! Click here to buy.

    Live Music You Need to See

    I just bought a bunch of concert tickets. Happy Birthday/Merry Christmas/Everything Else to me! We have already seen these performers perform live and they were so good we are spending money to see them again. 

    • The Avett Brothers are on tour! Seriously, they are amazing live, and I’m not just saying that because they are my favorite band, which they totally are, but seriously, seriously, seriously, they are so good live. Click here for tour info.
    • Hozier is out and about, too. This dude is unbelievable live and can really jam, plus he has the happiest, kindest vibe about him. Click here for tour info.
    • Last but not least, Sara Bareilles. As a piano-player-singer-type, of course I’ve always loved Sara. But when I went to her concert a few years ago I had no comprehension of how truly spectacular she lives. Her musicianship is impressive, but she is also incredibly funny and witty. Her favorite word starts with “F” and she uses her favorite word a lot, but she makes it very endearing (haha!) and it’s not stopping me from taking my girls anyway. ūüėČ Click here for tour info.

  3. Friday, February 15, 2019

    Friday Show & Tell: ‘This Week for Dinner’ is finally on Instagram, plus some great podcasts about plant-based foods

    It’s Friday Show and Tell time!Screenshot of This Week for Dinner's Instagram page @thisweekfordinner

    This Week for Dinner is on Instagram!

    So, my blog turned 12 last week. I totally forgot about the blog’s birthday, so, you know, Happy Birthday, Blog! Good job on 12 years and all that. Anyway, I’ve been on Instagram forever but have never focused exclusively on food content because, well, Instagram was sort of my happy place where I did whatever I wanted. It still is, but I have¬†finally pulled the trigger and got This Week for Dinner going on Instagram. I would love love love it if you want to follow me over there. I’ll share content from the blog as well as the podcast (which will be starting up again soon!), the weekly menu and great food! The handle is simply @thisweekfordinner.

    Recent Podcast Recommendations

    Two of my favorite podcasts had some great episodes lately talking about plant-based food. They’re really well done and super interesting, so I definitely want to share them with you!

    Science Vs from Gimlet Media

    Science Vs

    I love Science Vs, it’s a delightful science podcast by Gimlet media and the host Wendy Zukerman is one of my favorites. Anyway, they recently did an episode about vegan diets, looking at different vegan and anti-vegan claims (like vegans are better for the environment and you need cow’s milk to be healthy) to figure out what was true. You can listen to the episode here:¬†Vegans: Are They Right?

    But what I really want to share is the follow up episode about milk alternatives, or shmilks as Wendy calls them. It’s a super short episode that looks at the environmental impact of soy, almond, oat and cow’s milks. At the end of the episode, my 11-year-old Anna said, “Well, it looks like probably our whole family should start using your oat milk, huh, Mom?” You can listen to the episode here:¬†Soy, Almond, Oat Milks: Are They Udder Bull?

    Freakonomics Radio - The Future of Meat Episode Recommendation

    Freakonomics

    Freakonomics is another of my favorite podcasts. Their recent episode The Future of Meat¬†is fascinating and great food for thought. Pat Brown, CEO of Impossible Foods, is interviewed extensively and he has really thoughtful ways of looking at the future of food and meat production. (Fun fact: my husband Nate’s company synthesized DNA for Impossible when they were developing their ground beef product. Cool, huh?)

    That’s all for today! And, as always, show and tell is for the whole class! Feel free to share whatever you want in the comments below!¬†¬†

     


  4. Friday, January 11, 2019

    Friday Show & Tell: I Caught the Tidy Bug and It Feels Great!

    Marie Kondo and her magical tidying-up ways are all the rage…again. AND WITH GOOD REASON. Have you seen her new show on Netflix? It’s wonderful, both because there are tons of great tips and inspiration¬†and Marie Kondo is the cutest human and you’ll totally fall in love with her.

    Photo of Marie Kondo from Netflix's new show "Tidying Up" | Photo Credit Denise Crew/NetflixPhoto credit: Denise Crew/Netflix

    Last week the kids and I visited two of my aunts while we traipsing around the West in our minivan. Both of these aunts have very tidy homes (I know for a fact at least one of them read Marie’s book years ago). Stepping into their homes and finding my way around their kitchens/cleaning supplies/whatever was no problem because everything was so organized, logical and easy to see. While all of it was inspiring, the thing that really stuck with me was my Aunt Barb’s pantry shelves. Sure, they looked great, but more importantly I noticed that she very clearly only stocks the foods she uses on a regular basis. I know, DUH. This should be obvious, but I had so much food I’ve kept for years (and even moved from house to house) that I was never going to use. So, I came home and immediately started cleaning out my food drawers and shelves.

    Photo of my newly-organized kitchen food shelves

    Then Nate told me that Marie Kondo had a new show on Netflix called Tidying Up with Marie Kondo. We bought her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up years ago but I never read it. It seemed the fates were trying to tell me something, what with the tidy aunties and the tidy TV show converging on me. Anna and I watched a few episodes over the weekend and, well, I’ve been an organizing Tasmanian devil all week.

    I didn’t do any before-the-tidying-frenzy photos, but I did take some after shots! (On my iPhone so my photography is, well, not awesome…but whatever, this isn’t a photography lesson, amiright? I’m tired after all this cleaning, too tired to pick up my heavy camera.)

    Organizing The Kitchen

    Newly-organized canned goods shelf as inspired by Marie Kondo

    Most every shelf, cabinet and drawer got cleaned out and organized this week. Previously all my canned goods resided in the drawer you see below. Which means I couldn’t see all the cans easily. But also I hardly ever used anything that was in that drawer, the drawer that happens to be the most accessible in my kitchen. Out all the cans went (holy crap some of them were old…you can see the rings from a leaky, rusty can in the drawer that I couldn’t clean off!), and I put the good cans of food on a shelf in the garage, where everything is super easy to see and, therefore, actually useful. I put things in drawer-previously-known-as-the-useless-canned-food-drawer that we use on a regular basis and even ended up with room to spare. (One of my favorite things in life are empty spaces in closets and drawers!) This is only one major change that happened in the kitchen this week…I won’t bore you with the rest, but needless to say using my kitchen is now 100% easier.

    One of my food storage drawers, newly organized and much easier to use

    Clothing

    We’re not quite done cleaning out everyone’s clothes, but most of it is done. The way Marie Kondo folds clothes is fantastic. Owen knows how to do it now and was super excited to organize his drawers. As I went through all his shirts with him there was one that he never wears and I was surprised when he said he wanted to keep it. When I asked him why he never wears it he said, “Because I can’t ever see it.” Now he can see all his shirts, again making the things we have more useful! I am¬†really¬†hoping as we get into the normal routine of life we can maintain this folding technique when doing laundry because it is awesome. I’ll keep you posted!

    My son's t-shirt drawer, with all the clothes folded the Marie Kondo way

    Bathrooms

    Every single drawer and shelf in both our bathrooms was completely emptied and then organized. Like food, there was stuff in there we hadn’t touched in ages (sometimes over a decade!). We went from completely stuffed cabinets and drawers to having room to spare. Again, everything is viewable and therefore more useful. Here’s our medicine cabinet, organized by category. It’s like a pharmacy!

    Our newly-organzied medicine cabinet, one that would make any pharmacist happy!

    Everything Else

    I cleaned out closets, linens, shoes, you name it. Here’s my cloth napkin drawer, where now I have room for dish cloths and my vacuum attachments. This drawer is like a whole new person (you know, if drawers were people).

    Cloth napkin drawer after going through the Marie Kondo method

    We kept the things we use regularly as well as those things that spark joy, we recycled/tossed/donated everything else, and then we tidied up. And it was the best use of my time in our home in a long time. Thanks Aunt Sue, Aunt Barb and Marie Kondo!

    Happy New Year and Happy Tidying!


  5. Friday, November 9, 2018

    Friday Show & Tell: Wild Kratts Live, Imperfect Produce, Native Deodorant and Oatly Update

    Happy Friday! I have a few things I want to share with you, so I think it’s time for Show & Tell!

    Wild Kratts Live

    Wild Kratts Live Show with the Family

    A few weeks ago we had the chance to take the kids to see the Wild Kratts Live 2.0 show, (big thank you to PBS Kids for the tickets). My kids love the Wild Kratts (even Cate who is pushing 14!). Nate and I kept the show a secret and surprised them the day we went. When we arrived we discovered we even had VIP tickets, which meant we had the chance to meet the Kratt brothers after the show. It was such a fun day!

    Chris and Martin talk with my kids at the Wild Kratts Live show

    If you have kids that like Wild Kratts I definitely recommend the live show. The show itself was adorable and the sound of children’s laughter was non-stop. Owen (7) was completely engaged the entire time. Cate decided that watching all of the little ones in the audience was as much fun as the actual show. Meeting the Kratt brothers was¬†awesome. Chris and Martin have boundless energy and are so kind, speaking to each child individually and really taking their time with all the kids. We walked away from the experience in a great mood, with positive feelings and happy hearts.

    Meeting Chris & Martin at Wild Kratts Live

    Click here to check out the tour dates and locations!

    Imperfect Produce

    In my ongoing effort to make the food I buy more environmentally friendly, I recently started ordering from Imperfect Produce. In terms of environmental impact, the very best thing we can do is buy local. After that, buying food that would otherwise go to waste is pretty awesome, too. Imperfect Produce sources “ugly” and surplus produce from farmers and producers and then sells it at a discount to customers. The box of produce is delivered to your house each week. I love their mission since wasted food is something I think about¬†all the time.

    Infographic explaining how the company Imperfect Produce works - they source imperfect and surplus fruit from farmers and deliver directly to customers

    I am absolutely loving Imperfect Produce. There is minimal packaging and all of the produce we have received has been awesome and delicious. Each week an email arrives reminding me to customize my box. You can choose from whatever they have in stock that week and there is both conventional and organic produce. In addition, it tells you were each item is grown. The website is so easy to use and my new system works great: I keep a list on my phone that tells me what will be coming each Friday from Imperfect Produce so that when I go shopping at the farmer’s market and grocery store each week I don’t overbuy anything.

    Imperfect Produce is expanding across the country and San Diego was one of their latest additions. Click here to visit their website and see if Imperfect Produce is in your city. I highly recommend them! (Note: Links to Imperfect Produce in this post are referral links. If you sign up using this link you and I both get a $10 credit. I have no relationship with Imperfect Produce other than being a customer and once you are a customer you can refer people, too!)

    Native Deodorant Update

    Remember my new favorite deodorant? I’ve been using Native for over a year now and still love it. In fact, I’m kind of addicted and have never had such a large stash of deodorant before. Their scents are just so great! Anyway, Target started carrying Native. Woohoo! Keep an eye out next time you visit Target!

    Oatly Update

    A few months ago¬†I sang the praises of Oatly oat milk. Since then Oatly has become nearly impossible to buy because it’s just so darn popular (with good reason!).¬†They had a day a few weeks ago where you could buy one case on their website. It felt like buying tickets to a concert ‚Äď I had to set a reminder on my phone and it sold out within 20 minutes (I succeeding in getting a case!). I have confirmed with the Oatly team that they are building a factory here in the United States that will be opening in early 2019, which means pretty soon it will be much easier to get Oatly. I CAN’T WAIT. Good work, people. Keep the demand up! We want Oatly everywhere!

    That’s all I got! Have a great weekend!


  6. Monday, July 30, 2018

    Week 587 Weekly Menu

    Greetings from Cape Cod!

    Sunset in Falmouth, MA on Cape Cod, Maynard family vacation 2018

    It’s Cape week. We planned our menu as an extended family and I am sharing it below. When we got here Saturday we had Sweet Tomatoes pizza, as per tradition. I limited myself to one slice (since I’m not eating much wheat or any dairy lately)…and it was worth every bite. Man, that pizza is good.

    Week 587 Weekly Dinner Menu for week of 7/29/2018

    SUNDAY:
    7-Layer Mexican Dip,
    Creamy Chicken Enchiladas

    MONDAY:
    Seafood Sam’s¬†(another Maynard Cape tradition)

    TUESDAY:
    – Jane: Lentil Rice Bowls with Lime-Tahini Dressing

    WEDNESDAY:
    – Jessica: BBQ Night (Hot Dogs, Hamburgers, Potato Salad, etc.)

    THURSDAY:
    – Jake & Mary: TBD, something vegetarian!

    FRIDAY:
    – Eat out night and/or eat up the leftovers!

    SATURDAY:
    – Cousin Sara’s Wedding in Maine!

    It’s going to be a fun and delicious week! As usual we would love to see your menu for the week, please share in the comments!


  7. Friday, May 18, 2018

    Friday Show and Tell: Joy’s Red Beans and Rice + the Chompers Podcast

    Happy Friday! I have two quick things to share today. These two things are awesome. Ready?

    Joy the Baker's Red Beans and Rice Recipe

    Joy’s New Orleans-Style Red Beans and Rice

    When I went to New Orleans about 347 years ago I bought a bag of Camellia Red Kidney Beans, a New Orleans classic. And then I came home and put the beans in the pantry. And then I didn’t do anything with them in¬†forever and the beans were sad. But now they’re happy because they finally made it into a pot. One of my blogging friends Joy the Baker moved to New Orleans a few years ago and has¬†a recipe for Red Beans and Rice on her site. I trust Joy, so I decided to give her recipe a try.

    Oh goodness I really loved this dinner. Joy’s Red Beans & Rice are delicious. And I didn’t change the recipe¬†at all, which means I’m just gonna go ahead and send you on over to her site! (Okay, I did double the amount of pancetta and sausage, a decision I firmly stand by. We also served it over brown rice, which worked great.)

    Also, people from New Orleans say you have to use Camellia’s Red Kidney Beans. And you can buy them online so there really is no reason not to.

    Also, I bought a canister of Tony Chachere’s Famous Creole Seasoning for this recipe and have since used it three times on other foodstuffs, too. So, that is also a worthy investment.

    Chompers, the kids' tooth brushing podcast that rocks

    Chompers Podcast

    If you have any kids in your life that you have any kind of influence over then you need to keep reading. CHOMPERS IS THE GREATEST THING EVER. What is Chompers, you ask? It is a twice-daily podcast show for kids that teaches them how to brush their teeth¬†and¬†gets them to brush for a full 2 minutes. They tell jokes, share facts, do quizzes…the list goes on. It’s the best.¬†Owen, our 6 year old, especially loves it and has listened to the Chompers podcast twice a day every day since we discovered it. And he totally brushes the whole 2 minutes every time.

    Seriously, go subscribe STAT. (I hear even some adults listen to the podcast to make sure they get their full 2 minutes of brushing in, too!) Click here to visit the Chompers website or simply subscribe wherever you get your podcasts.


  8. Friday, May 11, 2018

    Friday Show & Tell: Cool Food, Kitchen Gear and More!

    I have¬†so many things to share today, ranging from a non-wheat pasta product, a non-dairy milk alternative, a super cool kitchen tool that made making cut-out cookies delightful, cool shoes AND a live show for the family that is sure to be awesome.¬†Let’s just jump right in, shall we?

    Banza Chickpea Pasta

    Banza Chickpea Pasta

    I don’t follow many celebrities on social media, but I do follow Kristen Bell (who I actually saw speak last week and she is tiny and adorable and smart and she even sells really delicious bars that save lives, go check them out!). Back in February she posted this cute Instagram video about Banza pasta. I’ll be the first to admit I ordered six boxes almost immediately after watching it. I have eaten the pasta a few times now and am ready to report that…

    I love Banza! It smells and tastes a little different than normal pasta. Because, duh, it’s not normal pasta. It’s made out of chickpeas. Which means it’s full of fiber and protein and all kinds of good nutrients. But, also, when you top it with whatever you normally top your pasta with, it totally tastes good. If you’re looking for a wheat alternative or just want a pasta with a healthy boost, I recommend Banza!

    Oatly

    Oat milk by Oatly is a great dairy alternative!

    Okay, so I have pretty much cut dairy from my diet. I still use butter, but whenever I eat anything with cream or milk, I feel awful. Which means I haven’t had a decent latte in months, which is a cryin’ shame. Then, last week, I went to one of my favorite local coffee shops Revolution Roasters and discovered they had “oat milk” as one of their milk options. After a lengthy discussion with the barista (because once you get me talkin’ ’bout food I can’t stop), I gave the oat milk latte a try and SKIPPED HOME SINGING TRALALA BECAUSE I WAS SO HAPPY THE END.

    Oh wait. That’s not the end. I went home and ordered a whole lotta oat milk from Oatly, the very oat milk my barista raved about.

    So far Oatly’s oat milk is my favorite milk alternative I have tried. It has a unique flavor, as all milk alternatives do, but it’s my favorite so far, and the flavor is more subtle than say almond or coconut milk. It kind of tastes like, well, granola or oatmeal, but, like I said, it’s subtle. And the oat milk plays nice with my body. No nuts to worry about, no dairy to worry about and I feel good afterwards. Oatly is a plant-based, sustainable product, which is another big reason I am happy to support them.

    King Arthur Rolling Mat

    The rolling mat for baking form King Arthur Flour

    Oh my goodness I am so happy I bought this rolling mat. SO HAPPY. Here’s the background: my grandma and my mom always had the Tupperware rolling mat, which I received as a wedding gift many moons ago. I know they loved it, but I never really did (sorry Mom and Grandma!). The mat would slide around and over time it started cracking and falling apart (which made me sad because¬†nostalgia, but I haven’t missed it in the kitchen as far as cooking is concerned). Once my Tupperware rolling mat bit the dust, I bought a new rolling mat from King Arthur. It came in the mail and I promptly put it away for a few years. It stayed in the cabinet, patiently waiting, until yesterday.

    This mat is seriously awesome. It stays put on the counter beautifully, it’s really big, and it just plain worked great. I highly recommend it! Click here to buy a King Arthur Rolling Mat for yourself.

    My New Favorite Birkenstocks

    My New Favorite Birkenstock Styles - Mayari and Daloa - from This Week for Dinner

    I didn’t start wearing Birkenstocks until a few years ago. Once I did, I was hooked and it’s pretty much the only shoe I wear (as made apparent by the T-shaped tan line on my feet that I just can’t shake). The Gizeh style has served me well and I own three pair. But, I’ve gotta admit, I was getting a little tired of them. So, I started poking around, looking at different kinds of Birks. I ordered a pair of the Mayari sandals in Stone and the Daloa sandals in Mocha, just to try on, mind you. And, well, I kept both pair. They’re my new faves. Which means now I’ll have even more Birkenstock tan lines on my feet. ūüėź

    Wild Kratts Live!

    Wild Kratts Live US Tour

    My kids¬†love Wild Kratts on PBS. A lot. Even Cate, my 7th grader. I just learned that there is a Wild Kratts Live show and the U.S. tour kicks off in September.¬†We are totally going no matter what. But it’s a surprise, so don’t tell my kids. (Hopefully they don’t read this, fingers crossed!) Click here to get tickets for a show near you!

    In Conclusion…

    Please don’t tally how much money I have spent on this post. Thank you and good day.


  9. Sunday, March 25, 2018

    Show & Tell: Things That Made Me Cry

    Today I have a special edition of Show and Tell for you: Things That Made Me Cry. Fun times! Two of these totally awesome things are music related and the third has to do with food. All three are wonderful.

    This Week for Dinner Show & Tell: "May It Last: A Portrait of the Avett Brothers" is must-see viewing

    May It Last: A Portrait of the Avett Brothers

    I must give credit where credit is due…my husband Nate has been listening to the Avett Brothers for ages and is the reason I know who they are. They are hands down one of my favorite bands and their concert a few years ago was one of the best we’ve ever seen. Judd Apatow must share the same sentiments as we do because he recently produced a documentary about the brothers and their band for HBO, May It Last: A Portrait of the Avett Brothers. Please go watch this documentary. It is just so wonderful I don’t know what else to say. Oh, I do know one more thing to say…I cried pretty much non-stop through the last 45 minutes of the movie. IT IS SO GOOD.

    And, one final thing: if you don’t know who the Avett Brothers are, start listening stat. Their most recent album True Sadness is perfection, but here are a few of my favorite older songs: Murder in the City (this one made me cry at the concert, it was embarrassing), Morning Song, and (of course) I And Love And You. (Photo credit: HBO)

    This Week for Dinner Show & Tell: Yo-Yo Ma in Concert!

    Yo-Yo Ma

    I took the girls to see Yo-Yo Ma at Copley Symphony Hall in San Diego. Yo-Yo Ma played the Brahms piano trios with pianist Emanual Ax and violinist Leonidas Kavakos and it was, well, beyond words. Three masters playing music written by another master on world-class instruments (some with the name “Stradivarius”). There were a few moments where the violin and cello played harmonies where I felt overwhelmed by what we had the privilege of watching and listening to. Another fun part of the night was Yo-Yo Ma’s countenance: you can just tell the man is filled with humility, kindness and joy. (And after hearing a few personal stories from Cate’s cello teacher about him after the concert, well, he is very firmly on my list of favorite humans.) If you ever get the chance to see Yo-Yo Ma in concert, make it happen. Click here for his scheduled concerts and appearances.

    This Week for Dinner Show and Tell: The Yakitori scene in episode 5 of Netflix's "Ugly Delicious" is beautiful

    Ugly Delicious: Season 1 Episode 5

    I know I already told you to watch Ugly Delicious on Netflix, but I do want to specifically call out a beautiful moment in the series. In episode 5 of the debut season, David Chang visits¬†Yakitori Masakichi in Tokyo, where¬†Chef Masahiko Kodama makes David yakitori, a Japanese-style skewered chicken. The chef grills Niigata-sourced chicken seasoned with Niigata salt over Japanese binchotan charcoal. David is pretty much overwhelmed by the perfection of what he tastes. When he tries to tell the chef just how amazing his food is, the chef’s reaction is, simply put, beautiful. Click here to watch¬†Ugly Delicious.

    Happy listening, viewing and crying!


  10. Friday, March 9, 2018

    ‘Ugly Delicious’ is as great as you’ve heard

    Just a quick Show and Tell for you today. Have you heard the buzz around David Chang’s new series¬†Ugly Delicious on Netflix? Think¬†the buzz sounds like hyperbole? It’s not. We love the show. Go and watch.

    Ugly Delicious on Netflix is AWESOMEImage credit: Netflix

    That said, let me warn you that if you happen to fall asleep while watching the show, you will probably have a dream (nightmare?) where you finally decide to try crawfish and halfway through eating said crawfish you look at your plate where you have set down the crawfish you were just eating and¬†you see it¬†lying¬†on its back on your plate and then you notice that its little legs and claws¬†are slightly moving.¬†Because it’s alive. You are eating a crawfish that is still alive.

    The show, however, is worth the risk of having this dream. I promise. Enjoy! (The yakitori scene in episode 5 almost made me cry!)

    *Note for parents: there is some spicy language peppered throughout the show, so probably best viewed without the little around.