Five Good Things – Thanksgiving Food Edition

Five things I encountered today that were interesting, educational, beautiful, edifying or that I otherwise found to be…well, good. None of these are promotions and I do not receive any benefit from sharing them. I just like them.

Thanksgiving draws nigh, so I thought instead of my usual round-up of links from the dark corners of the net, I’d share some of my best Turkey Day recipes instead. If you’re in need of inspiration, look no further!

20121108-spatchcock-turkey-food-lab-121) Spatchcocked turkey. To be fair, I’m only trying this for the first time this year but I’m excited and Alton Brown has never steered me wrong once. The final product may look funny and the name may make you giggle, but I have on good authority that a dry-brined, spatchcocked turkey is the best way to go. Serious Eats has a great instructional video if you’re unclear on how this works.

IMG_0606-560x8402) These rolls are my favorite part of Thanksgiving. I would just eat them forever. They are flakey and buttery and miles beyond store bought, or even any other crescent rolls I’ve made before. Yes, they’re a bit of work but you can do the cold dough a day in advance and then shape and let rise on Thanksgiving itself. Definitely worth it.

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Five Good Things for 11/23/2015

Five things I encountered today that were interesting, educational, beautiful, edifying or that I otherwise found to be…well, good. None of these are promotions and I do not receive any benefit from sharing them. I just like them.

I’m a little late getting this up, but I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend. I had a very relaxing one myself – saw friends, went to the farm market, binged watched all of Jessica Jones… Of course all my relaxation was erased by waking up at 3 am this morning after sleeping perfectly well Friday and Saturday nights. But that’s just how I roll. Here’s some goodness to ease you into your (abbreviated) week!

31) Horseback riding and fishing may not seem like related activities, except maybe if you ride a horse to your favorite fishing spot. But these fishing horses of Belgium do much more than just provide transport – they help trawl and haul in the catch. What cool and strong animals!

download (2)2) Arrested Development might be the funniest sitcom ever made and is certainly queen of the running gag. The gags are so on-going and complex, in fact, that you might despair of ever catching all of them. NPR has a solution for this – they’ve developed an interactive chart of all the repeating gags and how they relate to each other over the course of all four seasons. Impressive. I think my favorite running joke, though, is that Tobias is actually a Black man.

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Five Good Things for 11/20/2015

Five things I encountered today that were interesting, educational, beautiful, edifying or that I otherwise found to be…well, good. None of these are promotions and I do not receive any benefit from sharing them. I just like them.

monica-doing-turkey-dance-o.gifWell, we made it to the end of another work week. And next week is Thanksgiving, believe it or not. I happen to love Thanksgiving, mostly because I like to cook big meals, have people give me compliments, and then live off leftovers for a week. And also because I never have to travel for it. I’ve got my turkey ordered and have planned way too much food considering there will probably only be four of us. Saturday is our winter farm market, so I’ll be heading there to get my local ingredients and then off to see Mockingjay, Part 2. What are your weekend plans?

1) Weird Al’s parodies are hilarious on their own, but I love it when someone takes them to the next level. Here’s a montage of people in movies eating, to the soundtrack of Weird Al’s “Beat It” parody, “Eat It”.  Also now eating seems weird.

2) Thanksgiving can be fun, but it can also be super stressful, and the source of tension and fights for years to come. If you think everyone at your table just needs to chill the fuck out, here’s a video that shows you how to marinate a turkey in marijuana. Actually, it’s perfect if you think about it – when everyone gets the munchies, there will already be tons of food around.

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Five Good Things for 11/19/2015

Five things I encountered today that were interesting, educational, beautiful, edifying or that I otherwise found to be…well, good. None of these are promotions and I do not receive any benefit from sharing them. I just like them.

Last night we went out to an amazing little restaurant called The Tin Angel and splurged. We got a bunch of small plates and an entree each and cocktails. So that’s our eating out budget for the next three months, but it was totally worth it. The highlights were the pork empanada with harissa sauce, the calamari with bread to dip in the juices, and the speck-wrapped shrimp. If you’re in the area, definitely go try The Tin Angel.  But for now, here are some less edible but still wonderful things for your day.

FIGA960H.png1) Like most of America, I will be seeing the final installment of the Hunger Games movies this weekend. I’m really excited for it. Cracked has a great, if poorly titled, article about themes in the movies: “6 Bizarre Messages You Didn’t Notice In ‘The Hunger Games'”. It really should be called “6 Ways Themes in Dystopian Science Fiction Have Changed Over Time and What It Can Tell Us About Our Collective Psyche”. Definitely worth a read if you’re a sci-fi and/or Hunger Games fan.

2) I love this Toys R Us commercial featuring a father and daughter bonding over Star Wars fandom. So cute, and so nice to see a store admit that girls like Star Wars. Like, a lot of us. Hopefully things like this will lead to more Star Wars female characters in toys and on merchandise, which is currently lacking.

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Five Good Things for 11/18/2015

Five things I encountered today that were interesting, educational, beautiful, edifying or that I otherwise found to be…well, good. None of these are promotions and I do not receive any benefit from sharing them. I just like them.

I can’t believe we’re nearly halfway through the week. I feel like I’ve spent most of it so far being anxious about one thing or another. Hopefully the second half of this week will be calmer. Here are some things to take your mind off whatever is stressing you out this week.

albert-einstein-messenger-portrait1) The Atlantic has a great history of science article on how Einstein’s Theory of Relativity came to be accepted. The story  also goes to the broader point of how bias in science can stall progress for decades. Scientists are just as vulnerable as anyone else to bias, and if you’re working off the wrong set of assumptions, you’re gonna get the wrong answer. Which, I think, is something we could all do to remember.

ArmedAndSexyLeia-OfficialPix2) “Can We Talk About Why We Really Love Princess Leia?” is a great little essay on the true strength and allure of Leia Organa. Despite in some ways falling into a very traditional mythological role in the original trilogy, she’s really a subversive figure, and even more so in the Expanded Universe. I hope some of our new lady characters in the upcoming films can carry on her legacy.

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How I Monitor My Depression

p5pnnvj5mvc1oeb9wlem.gifI recently wrote about how I’m managing my depression at the moment, and it made me think of another topic that’s equally as important: monitoring my depression. Depression is a sneaky bastard. You might be chugging along, thinking you’re doing okay and then one day you wake up and realize you’ve not gotten dressed or showered in a couple of days and that you’ve crossed the line from functional to not. It’s surprising how it can creep up on you when you aren’t paying attention. This happened to me in the early fall. I thought I was fine at the end of the summer, but as our Comic Con (which coincides with my birthday) approached at the end of September, I didn’t start to work on a costume or plan anything for my birthday even though those are both things I really enjoy. I bought fabric for the costume I wanted to make, but just… didn’t start it. For me, that was a huge sign that the seasonal depression was kicking in early, as well as maybe a bit of feelings about turning the age I am.

me-partyEveryone’s depression signs are different, so it’s important to know yourself well. I have friends for whom becoming anti-social is a major warning sign. Not so much for me. I didn’t (willingly) speak to a single soul or go out for most of this past weekend, and it wasn’t a sign my depression is getting worse. I just really treasure my alone time – I got a ton of chores done, caught up on some TV shows, ordered some food I love, read, and went to bed early. It was incredibly relaxing and I felt much better for it. If I had stayed in all weekend and still felt miserable, that would probably have been a sign that something bigger was going on.

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Five Good Things for 11/17/2015

Five things I encountered today that were interesting, educational, beautiful, edifying or that I otherwise found to be…well, good. None of these are promotions and I do not receive any benefit from sharing them. I just like them.

giphyI was a bit of a nervous wreck last night, as my husband was driving back from California through central Utah, in the middle of a blizzard, with a broken phone. So I had no way to communicate with him. I became a little anxious, to put it mildly, once he was over two hours late (although watching The Rescuers helped), but he made it back and only spun off the road once (!!). All is well and we still had some evening left to enjoy. Here are your very relieved Good Things for today.

78701) One of my favorite comfort foods is curry puffs from our local Thai restaurant. I may have indulged while I was home alone this weekend, although I’ve always wanted to make them at home. The sweet cucumber dipping sauce goes incredibly well with the rich puff pastry and curried potato filling. So satisfying!

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