Cookbooks You Need, ASAP

Cooking is something that I’ve come to really enjoy as I get further and further into this “adulting” thing. Cooking my own food has definitely helped me expand my palate–and more importantly, my boyfriend’s palate. A recent win? Getting him on board the quinoa train. He’s now even more on board than I am, which I’ll count as a win because damn brown rice takes FOREVER to cook on the stove and I despise cleaning the microwavable rice cooker.

Now that’s not to say that all of my kitchen experiments end up in the “tasty” category, but most of them are, at the very least, edible. Except once when I tried to make creole-style red beans, ended up with weird bean soup and then SCORCHED the bottom of the soup pot trying to remedy the situation. That was a disaster that ended with Chinese take-out and a soup pot in the trash can. And a fair amount of tears because I don’t take failure well.

Thankfully, my cooking has improved since that fateful experience (though I haven’t touched a red bean since). And a huge part of my improvement can be attributed to an investment in pretty-much-fool-proof cookbooks from some of my favorite food bloggers. These cookbook authors/bloggers are HILARIOUS. I followed each of their blogs for a while before getting the real life cookbooks. I wasn’t disappointed at all and neither will you once you check out these three kick ass food tomes. Happy cooking!

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True Crime Podcasts, FTW

I know I might have mentioned this around here once or twice (cough-twenty-times-cough), but I absolutely love a good murder mystery. A little suspense, a little action, a little “what the f***?!”… Who could resist? And, it turns out, I love true crime sagas just as much as the make believe ones. Specifically… True crime podcasts. Yes. Please.

Of course my first true crime podcast was Serial, because whose wasn’t? It was magic. And after Serial ended, there was a huge true crime void in my daily commute. So I searched for a new podcast to get me to and from work everyday and I came across You Must Remember This, which was in the middle of their season chronicling Charles Manson’s Hollywood. Let me tell you — it was fantastic.

Fast forward to today and I’ve got a potentially embarrassing number of unplayed true crime podcast episodes on my phone to get me through these brutal Chicago rush hours. But I wanted to give y’all a rundown of my three favorites because everyone needs a new-to-them podcast waiting in the wings. These should be yours.

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Mixing It Up

Space is limited in my apartment, so design and functionality have to be one and the same. That can create some aesthetic challenges, but it also creates some interesting opportunities. Enter: books as art. I love the idea of optical illusion shelving and some of the more visually creative storage ideas, but the stone walls of my Chicago apartment–circa 1928–make those ideas kind of difficult to realize at the moment. So until we reunite with drywall, I’ll dream of these fun ways to turn my books into wall art and my wall art into useful shelving.

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