When You Hit the Christmas Party Scene: Cocoa Graham Corgis

Monday, December 23, 2013

-Cutest cookies ever.-

I don't care much for office Christmas parties. Half the time they're too tame and boring as you play an all too obvious game of Secret Santa where you likely get paired with the one person who wraps up a corn dog from the AM-PM in an old expense report. The other half of the time they're bacchanalian sinfests that would put Caligula to shame, which is saying a lot for a man who had sex with his consul, Incitatus (who, by the way, was also his horse).

It feels like a bit of a lose-lose situation. One you want to shoot yourself in the head because it won't end, and the other ends up with pictures of you on Tumblr and becoming an overnight meme because you thought wearing a Santa beard and mistletoe pasties was such an awesome idea. There generally doesn't seem to be a whole lot of joy at these parties or in the morning after should you be conscious.

This is probably just my opinion.

I'm not grinchy. Far from it. I'm the person who loves to celebrate Christmas, but I just have a thing against drinking heavily with co-workers or even hanging out with them outside of work. I feel that my day job professional sphere and my personal sphere are two very different spaces that should remain separate by both miles and personal connections. As Doctor Egon Spengler once said, "Don't cross the streams." I simply feel that though my life is very public what with book, blog, and social media the more intimate details of my life best left unknown to the people I have to borrow files from.

Plans This Winter: Roasted Garlic

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

-Garlic is an important part of every meal. Every meal.-

I'm finally back from my West Coast torture that I've been genially calling the Book Tour.

Touring is a strange affair. For years I had in my head I this Carrie Bradshaw-esque image of flitting across the nation. I would be reading to packed rooms, staying in quaint hotels that have a better than average continental breakfast (the kind where loose leaf tea and scones from the bakery down the street are served), and meeting people who love food and books and who want to talk to me about both as I scrawl illegible messages in their just-purchased copies. All of this, of course, on the publisher's dollar and in a private car.

I'm sad to report that this is all only about half true. Unless you're Ina Garten or J.K. Rowling you are on your own. The publisher may help with some event logistics at best and when you get to Seattle the publisher will happily email you a link to the city's bus system website so you can putter around town all the better. (That dollar-fifteen bus fare is on you, though.) Many events you go to the author had to craft together his-or-herself from far away and totally over the phone. It is tough so be forgiving next time you see a cookbook author trying to smile through the chaos.

To be frank the entirety of it rests on you.

Not to say there aren't great events or wonderful perks to it all. Some events are planned by others and all I had to do was show up. Recipes from the book were prepared by eager volunteers who had an excitement for cheese, the kind where they likely had a wheel of Brie at home in the fridge. These events were packed with cheese connoisseurs, readers of this blog or Stephanie's, or perhaps had just heard about it through the many various foodie networks that buzz underneath society like bees dancing a map to the next food truck party or restaurant opening.

We Were That House: Christmas and Cookbooks

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

I got a text from mom.

"Wait until you get home! Brian - on his own!!! - is outside hanging lights around the house! He's finally in the spirit. One of us. One of us." 

As I sat in the polar cave of my office at work cursing the persnickety heating system and wishing I, like every other one of my coworkers, could be home swaddled in blankets and eating sandwiches packed with turkey leftovers, it was a text I simply hadn't - nor ever - expected. My husband, a grinch in nearly all but color when it came to celebrating the holidays in any way outside Christmas morning or Christmas Eve dinner, was stringing lights. Unasked!

Satan, break out the snow cone machines because all this just froze over.

Absence and Secret Behavior: Cherry-Coconut Oatmeal

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Finally finished touring this week and so I'm throwing up one of my favorite posts from the archives as I just haven't had time to write anything. The next week or two will be a little crazy so we'll see what happens with the posts so please bear with me. Hope you all have a lovely turkey day! Remember to keep Melt in mind for your holiday shopping!  ~Garrett

-We all have our little secret habits.-

Fiance is out for the weekend for his duty with the Army Reserves - an overnighter that he's not sure of the purpose of but that he is unequivocally required to attend. He was up around four in the morning this Saturday dressed in full camo with rucksack slung over his shoulder. He pecked me goodbye and reminded me that, yes, four am was something that existed and that he would be back late Sunday night. Then off he went while I drifted back to sleep.

And what a wonderful sleep it was.

It may sound a little terrible, but I love his reserve duty weekends that include an overnighter or require him to get up so early in the morning that it can barely be justifiably called morning.

-See? Sounds terrible. No loving mate should say such a thing regardless of how true it is.-

But then again it's hard for me to argue with the fact that I get the entire bed all to myself. After all, there's something to be said for sprawling. Tonight I won't have to share the covers with anyone but the cats and they don't complain when I spindle the sheets around myself into a fluffy cocoon of fleece, down, and flannel. No stray elbows are going to knock into my ribs and cause me to wake up with strange indigo bruises of somnambu-happenstance. And, though I adore him, Fiance's snoring is often mistaken for semi trucks downshifting on a highway, which, as you can imagine, doesn't make sleeping easy. Or feasible.

So yes; I slept well last night and I will sleep even better tonight.

Cookbook Proposal Advice + Delightful Oatmeal Cookies

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

-To fuel you in your writing. Also, because.-

Stephanie and I were lucky that we had friends who could guide us through the proposal process when we first conceived of Melt. With their advice and a bit of our own innovation we crafted a successful document that had publishers fighting to purchase the rights to the book.

So what are some key elements to a phenomenal cookbook proposal? Well, organization is key, as is knowing your audience, communicating a clear and focused topic, and having a good sampling of tested recipes that represent your cookbook. (In case, someone at the publisher does decide to test a recipe.)

Since starting the tour I've been getting asked advice on putting together a proposal. It's a long conversation to have but below are three important aspects to consider. I feel giving these items attention will assist significantly and get publishers jazzed for what you have to offer.

Hooking Up with Seattle: Pumpkin Stuffed with Fontina, Sausage, and Macaroni

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

-Welcome to Seattle. Please proceed to get down.-

It is wet in Seattle right now. It is also cold. Neither of these things bode well to me and I am outside of my comfort zone as it feels like Northern California January right now and I'm just not ready for that. Add in the fact that two days ago I was wearing shorts and flip-flops in Los Angeles' 76 degree weather and my body is just wracked with loads of whattheeffisallthiscrazy?

Seriously, I will slap someone until fire comes out if this isn't resolved.

Seattle and I have a rather intriguing relationship. We're like old hookups who still enjoy getting together every so often. They're filled with indulgent behavior, fine meals, and tawdry nights out that result in stories I only share in person after I'm about three glasses in (consequently, three glasses in brings us back to another story about Seattle).

Romance and Ice Cream

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

I was walking around Aliso Viejo tonight - another one of Orange County's truly upper class cities where the number of police per capita is competing for the nationwide high and it where distinguishing your white Prius in a forty acre parking lot packed with countless other white Priuses (Priusi?) requires a divining rod - and walked passed an older couple exchanging sweet words. I only caught a bit of what they said, but essentially he was asking if she wanted to get serious or dive backing the dating pool. She laughed and he smiled and I gather she seemed somewhat smitten. I glanced back and saw the embrace and all was perfect in the world for them, and I suppose by extension the rest of us as well for what is happiness if not contagious?

Not far from that very spot I realized that I once had a rather lovely kiss. I was on a date with a boy from another school, a set-up to be honest and one in the summer following my senior year. I couldn't tell you his name if you waved a blank check in my face, but I can tell you he wore a black leather jacket with a powder blue cotton hood as his left canine was slightly snaggled in way that made his smile beyond endearing. A mutual friend had insisted we meet up and we both had agreed. 

It was 2001; social media didn't really exist yet and dating sites were still a place where only the lonely or the crazy-stalker-murderers went to find love (or a victim in the case of the latter). In addition, being gay was still taboo, especially if you were eighteen in Orange County where conservative republicanism runs rampant and 100,000 parishioner-strong MegaChurches are the norm. Meeting another gay person who lived openly (I didn't at the time) was unicorn rare. A set-up was perfectly acceptable and likely the only option for high-schoolers at the time.

Another Le Creuset Giveaway!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

We're giving away another set of Le Creuset!

To celebrate the official release of Melt: the Art of Macaroni and Cheese, we are giving away yet another $500 set of Le Creuset cookware and a $100 gift certificate for Murray's Cheese. No purchase is necessary to enter the giveaway. To enter, here's all you have to do:

Take a photo of yourself with the Melt cookbook, either your own copy of someone else's, and post it to your Facebook wall with the wording: "I love macaroni and cheese and Le Creuset! http://www.meltmacaroni.com." 

That's it! Then leave a comment here or email info@meltmacaroni.com with a link to your Facebook post so we can see your entry. Photos don't need to be anything special - a phone photo will work just fine. But only original photos will be accepted, so the photo must be yours! You also don't have to show your face if you don't want to, but it would make it a lot more fun if we can see you smile. :)

One winner will be selected and announced on December 15th, 2013. For other details and legal what-have-you, please refer to the official contest rules.

It's Out!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

A lot of you know what today is. It's something I've cried, bitched, gleed, bragged, and freaked out over multiple times.

My first book is finally out.

Melt: The Art of Macaroni & Cheese is the epic tome for the cheese lover and home cook. It's a dedication to my and my co-author, Stephanie Stiavetti's love of handcrafted and artisan cheese. Years of practice and education in writing and cooking all culminated to bring you what I believe is one of the most distinguished, artistic, and helpful guides to cheese and pasta (and certainly the most so on the subject of macaroni and cheese itself). I know it sounds haughty to say this, but I say it because it's the truth.

Then again, we've got a LOT of people agreeing with us. Ree Drummond called it "positively transcendental," and Dorie Greenspan considers the recipes, "modern, sophisticated, beautiful food." The Sacramento Bee adored it to say the least. I'm hoping for a lot of good reviews, but so far they haven't.

Instead, they've been amazing.

Here's what; I work as a restaurant reviewer in Sacramento. I regularly judge peoples' pride and joy. I pick apart their taste. I critique their judgement in a very public way. To be on the receiving end is hard, especially when it's anything negative. I'm learning to let the small stuff roll off my back (mainly the concern about a lack of nutritional information in a book about cheese and pasta) and not letting the positive go to my head. Still, I'm girding my loins and getting braced. Got to protect my baby, after all.

I'm utterly thrilled at how many of you pre-ordered the book through Amazon, Indiebooks, Barnes & Noble, and other online book sellers. I imagine, you probably have your copies in front of you now or will by the end of the day. For those of you who have yet to pick up a copy, please consider doing so.

The first few weeks of a cookbook are vital to its survival. The dash out of the starting gate needs to have a quicksilver pace. This determines a book's popularity. To get reviewed by the national media, you need to sell well. As you can see it's a Catch-22, be popular or the major media won't review you and make you popular. Essentially, the better the book initially sells, the more likely that national media will pay attention. You are who decides what books among the many that traditional media want to check out.

If you pre-ordered, I cannot thank you enough. If you haven't gotten your copy, now is the time. Perhaps for you or as a gift for a mac and cheese fanatic or curd nerd in your life (a fantastic Christmas/Hanukkah gift and plenty of ideas for Thanksgiving).

I also need to say thank you to all the recipe testers out there. Seriously, you guys are amazing. Eighty five total strangers came in and volunteered their time, money, and sanity to help two bloggers write a cookbook. Where else but in the world of food blogging could you find that kind of kindness and commitment? You guys rock.

A big hug to Matt Armendariz and Adam Pearson and their team who crafted the epic photos. My agent, Janis Donnaud. Michael Sand, Helen Tobin, and Michelle Aielli at Little Brown for putting up with my insanity.

My husband, Brian, for being having patience with me during my tantrums, panic attacks, and for eating recipes that weren't always safe for human consumption and putting away mountains of mac and cheese during the testing process. I'm sure you'll recover someday.

And, of course, my lovely, creative, and intelligent co-author Stephanie Stiavetti. She's family and one of my best friends and I could not have ever, ever, ever done this without her.

Okay. Cuddle time is over.

I'm off to book tour for the next few weeks going up and down the West Coast, as well as planning events in the East Coast and a few other spots. Posting is going to be a bit erratic for a bit, but I'll be sharing some of my experiences from the tour with you when I can. It's going to be more intense than that one time I tried kissing a girl in high school (and possibly just as awkward).


Garrett out.

Oh, and Christa Curtin is the winner of the Le Creuset and Gift Card Giveaway! Congrats! We will contact you shortly. 

Panic: Sweet Potato Waffles

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

-Waffles aren't always a cure for panic attacks, but they can't hurt.-

Recently I've been suffering from a small stutter of miniature anxiety attacks. It's like having to regularly walk past one of those territorial birds that live outside your house and constantly dive-bombs you anytime you step near it. I'll be writing or working and then suddenly ohmygodpanic!!!

There are a few reasons for this, the book tour being the first to come to mind because it involves me being social on a massive scale with people I generally don't know. This usually sets me off pretty well even though I hide it smashingly through sarcasm and witty repartee. Now most people would say I'm quite social and do very well in social events. Thing is that internally I'm screaming to just go home and hide. (I've learned to jam it down and cry when no one is around.) Even at my wedding I took 15 minutes to hide from everyone and catch my breath and that was from people I love. Plus, the tour involves event planning on a whopping scale. It's like juggling balls. Fifteen of them. And half of them are invisible. And one of the balls is a chainsaw.

Another source of stress is the whopping amount of vet bills for Eat Beast who, in the end and $1000 worth of tests later, apparently was just having a delayed reaction to Prozac. In addition to all this I have an unscrupulous ex I extricated myself nearly a decade ago. Suddenly, I being hounded by people wanting to serve him papers and threaten him on credit due. Naturally, none of the harrassers will listen to me when I tell them I don't know where he is and have zero contact with him because I assume they hear that record played more than a Katy Perry album regardless if it's the truth. (I haven't heard from him since maybe 2007, praise be to Jesus.) How they even have my number - or even more so, why - is beyond me.

Oh yes, and suddenly $3000 in house repairs are coming up. The joys of home ownership.

Suffice it to say, I haven't been cooking so much as rocking myself in a fetal position two or three times a day.

On Conferences and Sponsors: Curried Sorghum Salad

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

-Hell yes, sorghum and curry and butternut and yes.-

So it's not often that a food blogger must prepare a recipe that will be served to 350 other food bloggers. It's more pressure than the crushing weight of the ocean on an exploratory diving capsule at the bottom of the Marianas Trench, but without the joy of exploration and only the fear of being annihilated under a trillion tons of organ squelching darkness. Then again, if you wave a bunch of grain in the peripheral of my vision it certainly distracts me easy enough to forget said squelching. I have a feeling that's what the people at Bob's Red Mill had planned when they sent me a package filled to the brim with teff, sorghum, and other goodies you probably read about in a history book or the Bible.

Anyways, so yes, BRM. They called me somewhere back in early Spring after I had approached them back in late Winter. I was at a food blogger conference and, like many food blogger conferences, there were sponsors.

Many of the sponsors were like eager, wide-eyed kids on the first day of school before learning about the cruelties in life like eating too much paste or discovering what bullies are. Most of them simply do not know how to reach out to bloggers and just hope that if they throw enough free food at the masses someone will praise them online. It's very similar to how I imagine Republicans think food stamps work, and who are then puzzled when they don't get votes for passing incremental increases to government cheese rations.

Giveaway: $500 Le Creuset Package + Book Tour Details

Monday, September 30, 2013

To celebrate the nearing release of Melt: the Art of Macaroni and Cheese, we are giving away a $500 set of Le Creuset cookware and a $100 gift certificate for Murray's, the premier online retailer for artisan cheese. One lucky winner will receive the following pieces, making it the ultimate set for creating all the macaroni and cheese dishes in the book:

  • 4 1/2-qt round French oven 
  • 3 3/4-quart deep covered sauté pan 
  • 3 3/4-quart oval stoneware baking dish 
  • One set of four oval mini-cocottes 
  • Plus a $100 gift card for Murray's online cheese shop 

To complete your entry, email us at info@meltmacaroni.com or leave a comment. That's it! Boom! You're done!

This contest is now closed. 

Of course, the best way to enjoy all these cookware and cheesey goodness is with mac and cheese. If you haven't pre-ordered then we hope you will!
One winner will be selected and announced on the book's release date, October 22. For other details and legal what-have-you, please refer to the official content rules.

We also have an initial book tour list up. This list isn't complete as is only the West Coast, but East Coast and Central U.S. events will be added as we plan them. Many events have links to the event details.

Those Creative Muscles: Writing Exercises

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

A heads up. This is an interactive post. I hope you'll indulge me and play along for a bit. Get out a paper and pen. I will wait.

Ready? Awesome.


In my opinion, Vanilla Garlic is not a typical food blog. The focus of my posts is rarely a recipe. On the contrary, I often see the recipe as ancillary. The wrapping paper on the package within. The photos aren't highly stylized. They used to be, but behind every image was a lot of frustration. Styled and edited photos were and still are anathema to me. They're lepers I washed out of duty and not out of any aesthetic rectitude. The photos weren't representative of me, my ideas, or my style. It's why I switched to Instagram for both ease of use, time management, and it showed my life in the moment. It was more me this way.

The focus of Vanilla Garlic has always been the writing; both short and long essays, and essays of middling length. The writing has always been what fuels me and my Tuesday morning deadlines, and it always ensures I'm writing every single day to stay practiced. 

Now, like the rest of you, I have duties so sometimes passions take a back seat. Dinner has to be cooked, laundry folded, the cat needs his Prozac, and lawns have to be mowed. Things get in the way. The writing isn't always as great as it can be. Sometimes it suffers for legitimate reasons or for apathetic reasons (Real Housewives and Doctor Who), but most often if it suffers its due to a combination of the two. 

It's why I do so love practiced writing exercises. They force writers (that's you, by the way; not just me) to sit down and meditate on the process. You take one aspect of writing and explore it. Writing is a muscle, it has to be exercised to be made stronger. Just writing every day helps, the way running every day helps. Both keep you fit. But to stay in shape you also have to life weights, eat right, sleep, and stretch. Writers need to brush up on their grammar flubs, brainstorm, work on methods that collapse blocks, or simply focus on their basic communication skills.

What's That?: Cheddar & Peach Grilled Cheese

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

 -The peaches make it healthy.-

"What's that?" he asked.

"What?" I intoned, talking through a mouth full of soba and veggies. I caught his stare glued to the loaded fork that I was twirling in the air. (Since I usually eat at my desk my table manners are somewhat neolithic at work.) He was one of the kids bussed in to see one of the shows at my work, a local nonprofit theatre that brings the arts to kids. "You mean the broccoli?"

He nodded.

"The green thing is broccoli. It's, uh, well it's a vegetable. It's good when it isn't steamed. If it is I would avoid it, unless you cover it in butter. That usually fixes the problem."

He nodded again and scurried along.

Melt Cookbook Trailer!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

With the upcoming release of Melt, Steph and I have been hard at work setting up book tour dates, redesigning our site (with help from Ben, the best designer in the world, of course), and recording our cookbook trailer. Today, we're so excited to show you the finished trailer, something we've been working on for weeks now. It's done! We're almost as excited as when we finished the book.

With this short minute and a half trailer we wanted to communicate our reasons behind creating Melt: the Art of Macaroni and Cheese, what we love about cheese and cooking, and to give you an idea of what to expect when you pick up your copy of Melt. We put so much time and energy into creating what we think is a truly special cookbook, so we needed an equally special video to go along with it. Thank god we had a very talented videographer, Ryan Donahue, to make our vision a reality. Thanks, Ryan!

So without ado, we give you the Melt cookbook trailer! Please share using Vimeo's social media features so we can spread the love. Click the little heart-shaped "love" button, share it on Facebook, and pass it around on Twitter. We'd love you to help us get people jazzed about Melt and its cheesy goodness.

You'll have to pardon my inability to look straight into the camera, I imagined that most of this was going to be voiceover. It wasn't, so therefore I look like I might be suffering from a sudden embolism as I gaze off camera. On the plus side normally I sound so gay on video that one can only imagine a cock falling out of my mouth. This time I don't so yayness there.

Overall, though, not bad. Pretty darn awesome, actually. 

So now, I must ask something of you all. Give it a watch, share it on Facebook, pass it around. I ask you to help me get people jazzed about Melt and its cheesy goodness. Also, be sure to check out the newly designed official website for Melt: the Art of Macaroni and Cheese, located at MeltMacaroni.com. There you'll find an event calendar, links to buy, and other delicious tips and recipes for cooking with cheese.

In other news, we've also got a handful of book events lined up for all around the country and we're adding more every week. So far we're appearing in Seattle, Portland, Los Angeles, Sacramento, and the Bay Area. We're working on setting up a complete calendar that will automatically update when we add a new date, and a Google map of all the places we'll be. You should be seeing that announcement soon.

And don't forget: Melt is available for purchase on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other online book retails. Order your copy now!


Garrett out.

So Today Was a Quiet Morning and I Made Jam: Pluot Jam

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

-For your lazy, quiet Sunday.-

It's a quiet Sunday for once and only because I did all the yard work, cleaning, and my writing yesterday. I survived a work week that was more stressful than it should have been. As a reward I was overjoyed to have a college friend crash the night as we played catch up and made Tollhouse cookies. We spent the morning over jasmine tea to recover from the cocktails and too many bottles of wine the night before. Now? Now the windows are all heaved open and the screen doors shiver in the first inklings of autumn weather that's creeped in. It's the kind that feels cold and wet, and causes the remaining squash blossoms to lazily unfurl at ten in the morning.

Last night, like I said, was a night of drinking cocktails with too much lavender and not nearly enough soda water. A night melding with the Playstation - I used to be a gamer, but now I'm jaded by nostalgia - and becoming terribly addictied to Orange is the New Black. 

I also got my first magazine review for the book. Culture magazine called it, "a scrumptious page-turner... this book is well suited for turophiles craving cheese science and historical facts as the background for each recipe." I'm pretty darn thrilled with that. Only yesterday I did my first magazine interview, which was exciting and sort of alarming because after years of conducting interviews this was a bit of a switch. I'm still learning what my answers are and once or twice I had to say "off the record" because I was talking myself in circles and getting off topic, and apparently "off the record" is a thing people actually have to say. Who knew?

Legal: Thai Iced Tea with Boba

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

-The end of conservative America looks like this apparently.-

So this weekend I didn't do much cooking. I was too busy getting married. You may recall last year that my husband Brian and I had a rather lovely wedding. Here's what though, that was just a ceremony. At the time we were unable to make it legal due to Prop 8 - the proposition that banned gay marriage in California - still being in play.

Well, now it's not thanks to some very smart lawyers and a civil-minded Supreme Court ruling.

So Brian and I went to the courthouse on our one year anniversary and tied the knot again.

It was a simple thing, we paid a fee, filled out some forms, brought some witnesses, and a had a quick five minute ceremony where we exchanged rings under an awning that had seen untold couples exchange vows under a cloud of silk flowers.

And now we're legally married in the eyes of the state and the federal government.

He Didn't Come Here For You: Vanilla Bean & Lemon Rice Krispies Squares

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

-Yes, we're going all old school with graduate flavor.-

I rarely ever seem to post stories about how terrifying humanity can be anymore. If you go through the archives you'll quickly realize that I am a gravity for ridiculous situations. Being the black hole for stupidity can be rather trying, but it does provie for rather interesting stories.

Recently, life seems to have been rather quiet. Perhaps I've been too busy to notice or maybe we as a society are just getting better at using common sense (though that seems unlikely). The only truly hilarious thing as of late was when I sliced my hand open on a paper cutter while making a Injury and Illness Prevention Binder for Human Resources purposes. The droll irony of it all.

It was the only hilarious thing, that is, until a week ago.

I was out at Home Depot having some keys made for the new roommate and patiently waiting in line. The woman helping me was a squat, black woman with a multicolor weave that looked like it had been styled by whomever designed Rainbow Brite's miniskirt. Her fingernails were the long, curled sickles - the type where you wonder how the person does everyday tasks like turn a doorknob or use a keyboard. Each was painted a different shade of purple and totally bedazzled with plastic gems so that each was a little violet disco ball. Had she been five I could understand that being the coolest thing, like, ever. When you're easily over thirty? I dunno...

Giveaway Winner and Gypsy Curse

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

-Getting some shots ready.-

I always get sick at the worst possible times it seems. It's like some kind of curse and makes me wonder what gypsy I pissed off in a previous life for some viral dreadnought to sack my body at only the most inopportune moments. I picture running over a young lad with a horse and his hoop-earring'ed mother swearing that in my next life I will spend many joyful moments with a fever.

Because that's how I spent many of my Halloweens as a child. Not screaming around the neighborhood mooching free candy off of total strangers in a bizarrely socially approved tradition that goes against all better judgement that we reserve for the other three-hundred and sixty-four days of the year. No, I spent it in bed with an ancient humidifier clunking along and heaving out a damp fog over the bed.

So 'eff all if all I got was a tablespoon of Nyquil while my little brother hauled in a pillowcase stuffed with enough Twix bars that he could swing it over his shoulder on any corner in Santa Ana and knock no less than three hookers unconscious. So unfair. After Dad stole all the Milky Way's and Three Musketeers and I was finally feeling better a week later the only things left were the tosser candies like Bit-O-Honey.

The night I got engaged? Two hours later I was laid up with a stomach bug that pretty much annihilated any possible romance that night and for the next two days. Then again, nothing assures your faith in true love then when your man is gently rubbing your back and stroking your hair as you lean out of the bed and horf into a bucket.


Then, of course, there was this weekend. I was taping the trailer to my cookbook trailer with Stephanie, and our filmographer, Ryan Donahue. He's a talented food photographer in Sacramento and the editor of Edible Sacramento magazine.

Banned Words for Food Writers + Giveaway

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

-Some of this shit stops now.-

Dear Food Writers, Bloggers, Etcetera. The following words are now banned. Please be on note.

These words have been banned because they are pedantic, unimaginative, and dull. Reckless use of these words will result in a public flogging, followed by nude walk down the nearest major street where the locals will be instructed to point and laugh at your genitals.

Food writing should be clever, thoughtful, witty, informative, timely, or something straddling combinations of all that. It should not be "good."

You have been warned.

Good: Why? Why is it "good?" Was it not fantastic? Was it not horrible? "Good" doesn't say anything except that it was something pleasing. You have to tell me why it was good. Rough cuts of potatoes? The delightful bits of charring? The subtle use of lavender in the pastry cream that brought out the floral qualities of the strawberries? Give me more than "good."

Bad: See above.

Nice: See above. Also, I will fucking slap you.

Great: See above. Seriously, just no more blah and boring words. Remember what your English teacher in high school said, "Show, not tell." Don't tell me it was great, show me why it was great.

Hot Hot Hot: White Sangria Popsicles

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

-Tasty popsicles with booze and summer fruit.-

It's so damn hot this week I could wring myself out and fill a kidding pool with sweat. That's not too much of an exaggeration, mind you. It's been reaching the triple digits here with enough regularity that you could cook an egg to it (and probably do it on the sidewalk).

The new house has good insulation and trees so high they provide excellent shade, and while I worry that they may snap and crash into the roof one day during a winter windstorm, that's a disaster I'll worry about later. For now, shade. Glorious shade. It keeps the house under 85 degrees for the most part, which isn't too bad.

Now, we were going to do some other energy saving tricks to keep the heat down. We had glorious plans to install an attic fan to suck all the stale heat out from above, and two ceiling fans in order to move cool air around inside. Sadly, these plans were dashed when we first turned on the original furnace.

VG Kitchen Remodel: The Final Reveal

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

So we started with this:

Beat up. Old. Tired. No working appliances. An extra door. Five god damn layers of linolium. Popcorn ceilings. Sofits. Broken pipes. Busted cabinetry. A light box. Scratched paint.

You get the idea.

Now. Three months later, a lot of backbreaking work, too many trips to Home Depot, and more than a few spousal arguments and grey hairs later.


Stalwart: Pickled Jalapenos

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

-Spicy perfection.-

I was pretty much an angelic child. I rarely ever got in trouble and had an immaculate record in school. When I got home from school I would do my chores (clean the bathroom, clean up the dog messes in the yard, check if any dishes need cleaning) and then immediately do my homework. All of this, mind you, without being asked. My parents, a therapist and a third grade teacher, pretty much had me trained.

Aside from that my manners were impeccable due to years cotillion and manners classes (which, yes, is an actual thing people subject their children to), and my mom stabbing me repeatedly in the arm with a fork at the dinner table whenever she saw my elbow even caress the tabletop. Secretly, I think she delighted when she pitchforked me in the funny bone.

I was, however, a rather picky eater. A very picky eater. Partially because when it came to food I was willful. No cauliflower, no creamed corn, no asparagus, no peaches, no strawberries, no spinach, no carrots, no peas, nothing unrecognizable, and no steamed vegetables at all. And they were always steamed, so I never got why my mom didn't just cut them up raw and save herself the trouble.

The Cons: Vanilla Bean & Ghost Pepper Kumquat Marmalade

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

The kitchen is close to done. Not quite, but almost. That's another story, which at the moment I am unable to tell because if I do I'll suffer a conniption fueled from pure rage. So apologies if I need a week or two in order keep my blood inside my head on not spritzed upon my newly painted teal walls.

"And aren't they a beautiful shade of teal?!" is what I howl to the poor Mormon missionaries and UPS delivery men who by bad luck or unfortunate karma are forced to come to my door. Some are smart enough to run before I begin to detail how I installed the Cotton Valley Oak flooring. 

Instead, I'll bitch about something else today. First world problems. Who else has got 'em, right? How terrible it is that I am spending the Pride weekend in my brand new house putting together brand new Ikea furniture? How I suffer eating in my new dining room. What is that, husband? You picked up the wrong wine for the roast chicken with apricots? We can't drink Chardonnay! WHAT ARE WE, SAVAGES?!

So it hasn't been that bad, but let's talk fruit trees again. I know I was overjoyed at the prospect of now having them and how I was going to plant more, but I have quickly familiarized myself with the "con" side of the list.

Allow me to elaborate a few of these items:

VG Kitchen Remodel: Flooring & Blueberry Gorgonzola Tartines

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

-Behold! I have harnessed the power of the Earth itself!-

Cooking today. Really really. Aren't you so proud of me?

Enough of that, I have floors! We splurged on this, I admit. We got the really nice laminate floors that can withstand a nuclear bomb so I assume they can take the clackity treading of corgi nails. It's called Cotton Valley Oak and it is stunning to look at. You would never know they're laminate and not actual hard wood. We went with the spongier pads, too, so the floor doesn't have the telltale hollow echo laminate can sometimes have. We are installing it ourselves, which is a pain in the butt but saves us about $700.

On the plus side for me it means husband is always working in just a pair of shorts. So, yay there.

It's beautiful and I am so happy not to be walking on busted up and dusty concrete. Huzzah.

But you're probably here because I promised cooking.

VG Kitchen Remodel: Cabinets and Other Things

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

-Now all these walls need is a kitchen. And paint. Paint would also be nice.-

Can we talk about fast food for a second and without all the jerk-y knee jerk reactions about how it's incredibly processed, and how it's bad for me, and how it's evil, and how it's quite possibly responsible for the collapse of our foodways, and how your cousin heard that McDonald's was secretly funding an underground Nazi terrorist group that is strong in organization but where all members have terrible heart conditions and struggle to breath? (Did you not hear about that? It was in the underground blogs.)

Let's be honest. People wouldn't eat it if it didn't taste good. Second, I had a chocolate-filled croissant and two cups of black tea with cream and white sugar for breakfast today. You can't argue that that wasn't just as unhealthy as anything through the drive-thru window.

Anyways, can we all just agree that McDonald's fries are just the bee's knees? Yes, without a kitchen I have had to throw myself at the world of eating out, and while part of that entails discovering new restaurants there have also been forays into the Monsanto-supported Golden Arches and others of its similar grease-up-the-paper-bag-till-you-can-see-through-it ilk.

VG Kitchen Remodel: The Demo Begins

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Remember this?

-Where the style of the seventies overdosed on weed and died, but not before painting flowers on itself.-


-And now we've begun to dig a proper grave for it.-

The demo has begun. Brian has built a new gate and is redoing the cabinets. I've been packing the old house, doing yard work, and chipping away old floors with a hammer and chisel. It's a work in progress and we aim to be done by mid-June assuming I don't have a stress-related conniption and end up painting my walls with my grey matter. 

VG Kitchen Remodel: Edibles Abound

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

-Bing! You have cherries.-

Did you know that a furnace costs about $3000? I do now. For that kind of money you think I could at least get it in a nifty color like ochre or maybe zebra print. But nope, it had to be replaced because the replacement guy was all, "Well, it has to stay disconnected so that means no air conditioning and if you plug it in you risk blowing the place up," etcetera and so on.

I tell ya', it's this kind of things that force feeds me three big helpings of flaming bitch and puts me in such a mood that even Satan won't screw with me.

So yeah, there goes some of my flooring budget. Not sure how I'm going to work that out anymore, goddamnit. This is nothing to say of the surprise duct work that needs to happen and the discovery of the totally broken under the seal guest room window. (We'll be buying cheapest vinyl window I can find. It will be made of old The Monkees records.)

Remodeling is stressful. So much I just don't have the energy to rant about it, which greatly reduces the amount of f-bombs the Internet has to Iron Dome itself from.

But let's talk about some of the positives I have discovered. Most of it edible.

VG Kitchen Remodel: The Before & The Plans

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

I'm back. Sort of. Kind of. As you may or may not know depending how often you visit the blog posting has been rather sporadic as of late. Between planning a book tour, a massive fund raiser at my work, and the fingernail ripping pains of escrow I've been rather busy.

Still, I finally closed escrow and come Friday - unless HUD decides to continue being a dick and delays itself again - I should have keys in my hand.

And while there is no running water, or garbage cans, or service to pick up said cans, and a front gate that doesn't latch, there's also crayon on the walls, a turd in the toilet that's been there for two weeks when a homeless guy broke in and stayed the night, and there's a bit of wood rot in the eaves with a moldy shadow that whispers anti-Semitic remarks at me... this house is mine! This piece of crap house is finally mine!

I suppose this sort of euphoria is normal, the way mothers are completely mindwiped of the previous twelve hours of vagina-ripping birth horror the second they pick up their child. House keys do the same thing with memories of escrow. Had I not documented the fact that it was such a nightmare I would probably just pass it off in conversation as, "Oh yes, it was unpleasant. You'll get through it though. It's so worth it!

I have yet to see this be the case for myself, but after looking at my interest rate and mortgage payments that are scads lower than what I was paying in rent it's certainly shaping up to be. 

Until that time comes around there must be construction. The kitchen, to be exact. The rest of the house consists of lots of little projects. (Well, okay, the yard is Lovecraftian Beast formed of neglect and spite and crowned with a dilapidated hot tub; but that can wait.) 

The kitchen has gas. That's the plus. The only plus.

Currently, the layout as it stands is crap. It's tiny and impractical for functional flow or movement. The oven is totally busted and there is no fridge or dishwasher to speak of. There's a poorly painted door where someone didn't tape up the glass that lies about four feet away from the front door for no logical reason. A tiny nook for a table the size of a footstool is provided for your convenience. The cabinets are ugly and covered in fairly horrifying stencils I assume a bored housewife popped on back in 1978 when it was cool and cable T.V. couldn't fulfill a bored housewife's needs all hours of the day. 

I could go on, but allow me to show you instead...

Escrow: Vermouth Cocktail with Grapefruit

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

-The cure to pre-home ownership woes. Also, my current loan company people are pretty awesome. I just need to vent so bear with me here.-

Congratulations! You are in escrow! The home of your dreams is soon to be yours! What? It's a HUD owned home? No worries, this won't be too much different from a regular escrow.

Confused about what to do first? Follow this handy step-by-step guide!

1. Collect all the information your loan company needs to move forward with escrow. This includes a government-issued ID, a month's worth of pay stubs, a credit report, and information on any major loans you currently owe on.

2. Oh, you already gave them that? Hmm, something must have been lost in the mix. Well, just re-email the electronic copies you made. Or fax the hard copies you have again. No worries!

3. Time to get your inspections done. This means that some people will come out and make sure your home is in working order. This is kind of pricey, about $500 to get the roof, pest, and general inspections done. However, this will save money in the long run if they find major problems.

4. Write out another check to the appraisal guy who will tell you what your house is worth and what needs to be addressed in order to receive your loan.

5. There's nothing majorly wrong with the home aside from a few tiny fixes that need to be addressed. Huzzah! You got the appraisal back, too! The house is worth more than what you will pay for it. Double huzzah! You just have to fix a small leak in the kitchen, too. No biggie, right?

Card Not Needed: Chia Lemon-Thyme Cocktail

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

-The oddest cocktail ever.-

Ask me. Ask me, you cock-holstering bitch. Don't you dare not. I swear to God if you don't I will kidnap you, smuggle you into a Slovakian whore house for leprosy patients, and tape dollar bills to the inside of your colon. ASK ME!

"That will be $21.20. Will that be all for you today?" the teen behind the register asked.

"Sure. Fine." I handed him my debit card trying to hide my boundless anger and disappointment. 

Fuck you, you son of a bitch.

"Thank you for shopping at Total Wine."

You won't be twenty-two forever! Someday you'll grow old, too! En-fucking-joy it! *internal and incoherent rage ensues*

This was the sixth time in two months I wasn't asked for photo identification when buying alcohol. I'm only two months short of thirty! I eat well! I work out! I look young for my age! 

Or... apparently not.

God. Damn. It.

HUD: Asparagus & Ricotta Tart

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

-Swearing and political incorrectness ahead. So business as usual. Deal with it as I delete bitchy comments and emails.-

So yeah, this post has nothing to do with food except that - once again - I turn to it in order to sort of calm myself down because I'm screaming across the room like a cat with a dangly toy strapped to its neck.

We're in escrow for a home right now. At least we are on the date that I write this. We still have yet to undergo appraisals and inspections of all kinds so by the time this goes up in two weeks (yes, I write posts that far in advance so I have enough time to proof and edit... in theory) we may not be in escrow due to actually getting a set of keys, or because the inspector finds something like severe roof damage or the bodies of numerous missing hitchhikers dating back to the early nineties and therefore the place is not given the go-ahead by the loan people.

And yes, this is actually reason to not be granted the loan. I asked. Because I ask these sorts of things.

So let me tell you the epic tale of dealing with a HUD home (a home owned by the government) and how shit is perpetually flying fan-ward. Actually, not flying, but perhaps nervously humming around like a kamikaze shit-helicopter waiting to obliterate itself upon the blades and explode its stinky bits just oh-my-god everywhere.

Why Blog Writing Should Be Celebrated

Monday, March 18, 2013

So Saveur.com recently announced that nominations were open for Best Food Blog Awards 2013. I'm not much for these contests, I admit. I find them to be popularity contests more often than not.

(In full disclosure, though, I was a nominee for Best Food Writing in 2010, and Best Essay in 2011. I find this rather curious as more often than not I usually just purge onto my keyboard every week and it somehow comes out somewhat cohesive, so thanks to everyone who keeps coming back every Tuesday to see what hot mess I've spewn out.)

I am overjoyed to say that I was nominated with some pretty damn awesome people and the winners truly did earn their titles. I've also boasted my nominations here and there so I guess I can't knock on the Saveur nomination and voting process too much without being a bit of a hypocrite. Another post, perhaps.

This year, though, there was some category shuffling. Best Food Science, Best Kids' Blog, and Best New Blog were all added to the list and all very necessary categories than deserve recognition, a bit of fanfare, and an award in which the winner is showered in sexually loose groupies and a Parma ham.

Final Mac and Cheese Edits

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

No proper post this week because I'm in the crunch to finish final edits for my cookbook, Melt: The Art of Macaroni and Cheese. We're going through a paper copy of the book to catch any last edits and check on formatting and design. After that it goes off to print.

Below is a mini-preview of sorts. Hope you enjoy. (And don't judge too harshly as this is my first video.)

If you're a fan of this blog, of cheese, or macaroni, of macaroni and cheese together, or of little 'ol me then I encourage you to also head over to Amazon and please do two things:

1. "Like" the book on Amazon. Really, this helps immensely when it comes to marketing the book. It's shocking how much, in fact. Lots of liking demonstrates a book's popularity in the upcoming market and gets people to pay attention. (A note: sometimes the like button is there and sometimes it is not. No idea why.)

2. Pre-order. If a book has enough pre-orders it can tumble into a second printing before it even releases the first printing. This will also encourage possibilities of foreign language translations of the book and inspires more media outlets who see the numbers to publicize the book, thus encouraging more people to pick the book up and dive into the melty goodness. 

Plus, pre-ordering means you'll own a copy! Yayness!

Okee dokee, I'm off to play with my red pen. 

Garrett out.

JunkLovin': Book Review of "Classic Snacks Made From Scratch"

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

-Heart stopping goodness.-

My original major in college before I switched to English and Sociology was actually Genetics, and one of the perks to this major was having access to a well-stocked chemistry lab.

One Spring we came across a website that detailed the resilience of peeps when placed in extreme conditions. When frozen in liquid nitrogen they would shatter, and when placed in a vacuum they would puff up before collapsing in on themselves and looking like a neon raisin. The most shocking was the acid test where the peeps - horrifyingly - survived.

We decided to try this out ourselves. We filled a glass beaker with sulfuric acid, which when measured at the same molarity (a measure of concentration of a substance) is about twice as acidic as hydrochloric acid (the acid found in your stomach). We dropped a Peep in and... nothing happened.

At all.

Healed: Tibetan Soup Stock

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

-Roasted and ready to go.-

They had warned us about the altitude sickness, but I had assured myself that my strapping twenty-eight year old physique and mental acuteness could overcome something as trivial as natural response. Turns out, not so much.

My head was throbbing like I had just survived a Skrillex concert having been duct tapped directly to a two story subwoofer. Rising to over 11,000 feet (about 3500 meters) Lhasa is one of the highest cities in the world. If you're not from there, then you'll quickly notice the drop in partial pressure of oxygen. There isn't really less oxygen, but since there's less pressure in the atmosphere, it's not as tightly bound in the air. Imagine that instead of drinking water from a cup you poured it on the floor and like the animal you are you're licking it up. There's the same amount of water, it's just not as neatly compact as at sea level. This means you're drawing in significantly less air in Lhasa.

The result is a feeling of being hungover after a night when the next morning you look at the bottles strewn about the living room and wonder how you're still alive. Heahache, dizziness, aching muscles, and a gut punch of nausea are all common symptoms. I was feeling all of it, as were the rest of the people in my tour group and when we checked into our hotel at two in the afternoon more than a few people went straight to bed (or broke into the canisters of oxygen, which were available for $12 in the mini-bars).

Missed Valentine: Triple Chocolate Cookies

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

-Yes it's a late V-Day post. Stop with the rolling your eyes and frickin' read.-

Dear Brian,

So you're at field training this entire month with the army in the middle of nowhere Kentucky (though "nowhere" might be too general a description for that state) working on building your medical skills. It's noble of you and I'm proud of you, and even though I know you're bitching about it we both know part of you loves the military camaraderie and the fact that you get to build your knowledge base. It sorta makes it worth all the physical training and three in the morning.

I get to sleep at three in the morning. So, you know, ha ha.

I'm proud of you for what you do for your career, your education, and the fact that you do this for me, too. Alas, we both know I hate when you leave. I never handle it well.

Remember the first time you were going to be gone for three months? The night before you left I had a panic attack so bad I earned myself a hospital visit where the doctor drugged me higher than a cat on a car trip and put me on oxygen because I was hyperventilating so bad my heart almost popped like a kernel of corn over an open flame.

We both know I'm much better now. I only have a small bout of depression and get a tiny void that I try to fill with sex (insert dirty pun here) in the days before you leave, and with bottles of wine and too much exercise when you're actually gone.

Bias: Orange, Beet, Pineapple, and Carrot Juice

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

-Winter produce in warm hues.-

Okay, so I have to come clean.

I've been juicing.

I juice almost every day. Sometimes twice. It's becoming a problem.

When I first encountered the idea of juicing I thought the concept was vile. People gluging down chunky slurries of parsley, cucumber, and spinach. All ingredients I love, but having them pureed into a fine green trickle just sounded vile. The semi-noxious smell produced by all that mangled vegetal flesh sitting in the juicer's repository didn't help, either.

Monies: Best Brownies

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

-And I do mean best, bitches.-

I'm really glad I got a job because suddenly all of this happened:

Car Repair: $450, and that's the You've Been Our Customer For 8 Years rate. What with house hunting I cannot afford to buy a car, so I am doing everything in my power to keep my 11-year old Hyundai running. I take it in every few months for a check-up so that mid-adventure on the highway it doesn't explode in a ball of fire and trap me in the burning wreckage of fiery steel.

It's not a huge concern. Sorta. Really, the damn machine is just getting old. Every time I take it in they discover another piece is more decrepit than an empty Blockbuster Video. Soon it'll need a bed pan and hospice care just so I can drive myself to the nearby gun store to buy some shells for when I have to take the poor girl out back and shoot it between the eyes to put it out of its misery.

Unemployed: Hazelnut-Apple Cake

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

-A little note about this post: I wrote this shortly after I became unemployed and decided not to post it while I was job hunting because it was best that way for obvious reasons. As of today, the day this post is going up, I am starting a new job that I'm extremely excited about. So yayness.-

As of the day I'm writing this, January 3, it's been almost a week since I was rather unceremoniously let go from my job. It was with sincere regret on the part of my employer, bereavement on my own part, and just a general sense that, suddenly, the floor was collapsing beneath me and an unfathomable plummet was imminent.

It was. Is, I suppose.

I left my old job in adoption services and foster care at a lovely little nonprofit a little over three months ago. It was a rather difficult move as I loved the mission, my co-workers, and the people we worked with but in the end a massive reorganization and other upheavals had left me feeling somewhat panicked and rudderless like a dinghy plunging to the center of Charbydis. I felt the need to move onward and upward to a place where there was a bit more room to grow.

With the recommendations of some incredibly kind friends I landed an interview for a job at a local nonprofit of sorts. More like a nonprofit bank, really. It was with a well-respected changemaker in the region with the ability to influence the region and that had come across my radar numerous times.  I was thrilled at the opportunity and salivated at the prospect - the first and only one I had come across in my recent months of search. With little investigation or research I updated my resume and shot off an email to the executive director.

I was, according to the job description, more than overqualified for. They wanted two years experience (I have nine), a Associates Degree (I received my Masters), and the ability to stay organized (OCD, motherfuckers). I absolutely decimated the interviews to the point that I knew that I would be offered the job.

A few days later the call came in with an offer and a salary that was more than I had anticipated. I eagerly agreed.

Mugged: White Chocolate and Marmalade Cake

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

-White chocolate doesn't care what you think of it. White chocolate just kinda with it like that.-

I was already having a spectacularly craptastic day at this point.

To start things off I had lost the key to my personal safe and I needed to access some of the contents inside - in particular, my social security card - in order to apply for a job.  I made my way to the closest locksmith dragging this eighty-pound, fireproof, steel behemoth along with me and when I got to the front door the locksmith had flipped his "Closed" sign. I pleaded and pressed my face against the glass weeping for help. Alas, he told me to come back tomorrow.

I crawled back to the car, defeated, called the Human Resources manager and told her I would have my card for her the next day. I then bowed my head on the steering wheel and prayed that no Windex would ever wipe my ghostly face print off the glass of the locksmith's front door and that it would haunt the locksmith mercilessly and remind him perhaps of a wasted youth gone by and hopes scattered like leaves before a hurricane. 


2013 Thus Far: Hardy Winter Wheat Bread

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

-This is going to be one of those rather uninspired posts where I moan and make lists. Fair warning.-

2013 To-Do List

1. Buy a house. See this post. 

2. Find a new job. Right at the end of December I was let go from my job, which means I'm sustaining myself off of savings that I have been hoarding for a home down payment, some income from writing, and my husband's wages. You can bet I champagne'd myself into oblivion on New Years. I'll write another post on this whole staying at home all day thing later, but as of right now I see this as an opportunity to find the right job that'll make me happy.

I've just never been let go before and this whole thing is sorta scaring the crap out of me. I've also learned that one of the government requirements to sign up for unemployment is, apparently, shame. Oh, and judgment. It's in the fine print, I believe.

How am I filling time now? Lots of volunteering at other amazing nonprofits, writing, cooking, and catching up on a few books I have meant to read. Oh, and job hunting. (Probably should put that at the top of the list, right?) We're still looking for a house as owning is actually the cheaper option right now and we're still in a darn good place to do so.

Yay being money smart.

Home Hunting: Ginger-Maple Scones

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Me Blogging Before Beginning the House Hunting Process:

Aaaaaaand Now:


Or not. But really, this is insane.

According to Lyon Realty, the average American only stays in the home they bought for eight years before selling and starting the whole process again. I don't actually get this. I grew up in only two homes my entire life. The first one I was in until the age of six, but my parents had been there for 15 years, and my mother is still in her second house.

How does the process not mentally and emotionally scar people to the point where they never leave their new homes? I imagine myself at the end of this process sustaining on the unfortunate squirrels who happen into my backyards in order to avoid society. I would have to restrain myself around loan officers and realtors for fear that I might bludgeon them to death with mortgage insurance paperwork?

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