Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Attempting to Unplug: My Technology Addiction

Photo credit: kanate via freedigitalphotos.net
I am addicted to my phone. And to my other gadgets. It's taken me quite a while to actually admit this. I'm not a techie person. I don't jump to buy the latest gadget as soon as it comes out. I rarely ever pay for apps (I think I have purchased two? Maybe?). And yet, I find it ridiculously difficult to disconnect from my devices, mainly my computer and my smartphone. I already spend most of my time in front of a computer screen, thanks to the nature of my work. I cannot seem to bring myself to go anywhere without my cell phone. I feel lost and oddly useless without my computer in front of me at the end of the day, even if I would just be browsing Pinterest or watching something on Netflix.  I need to be stopped. What brought about this realization was two instances over the past week.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Apartment Hunting Woes

The more I look for apartments, the more I realize just how much I hate apartment living. All of this money thrown away every month and for nothing. And it seems like the apartments just keep getting more expensive for less space. Granted, there are a few perks. I don't have to worry about repairs, I'm not exactly stressing out over the state of the housing market.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

PB&J (Hold the Crust) Muffins

My fantastic batch of PB&J muffins
As mentioned in a previous post, I recently started cooking from "The Frugal Foodie", a fantastic cookbook that was gifted to me awhile back. It just took me a little while to get around to cooking from it.  From my first glance through the cookbook, this recipe jumped out to me. A lovely whole wheat muffin, not too sweet with a classic flavor combination: peanut butter and jelly.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Why Hunger Is a Cause Close to My Heart

This morning, I drove out to volunteer with the produce distribution at a local church. I do this pretty regularly as a proud supporter of the Greater Cleveland Food Bank and the excellent work they do in Northeast Ohio. I've worked with them on a variety of events in various different roles. Admittedly, volunteering in general is very important to me, but I always try to make a point to volunteer specifically with the Food Bank.

They have an excellent mission. Not only are they continually working toward their goals to alleviate hunger and food insecurity in Northeast Ohio, but they're making a huge effort to make sure it's healthy, nutritious foods that are getting in to the hands of those who need it most --especially in food deserts. A food desert is a place, generally urban, where you have no direct access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Either because places are too far away (i.e., not easily accessible via public transportation), they're too expensive, or the few places people have access to don't carry the staples that they really need to live well. This is one reason that I love working at the produce distribution events. They bring in a truck full of fresh fruits, vegetables and breads at a participating location and then people come through the line to get their allotted amount of whatever is being distributed that day.

Monday, July 14, 2014

The Frugal Foodie Cookbook Kickoff

The Frugal Foodie Cookbook: 200 Gourmet Recipes for Any Budget
I love to cook. I really, truly do. There’s just something magical about mixing together ingredients just-so and making a delicious meal. Unfortunately, I hate cleaning up and that is a stronger deterrent than I would like to admit when it comes to venturing into the kitchen. That being said, I am starting to make more of an effort to eat in and to cook good, delicious, healthy foods and also a wider variety. I cook well, but I tend to cook the same 20 odd things over and over again and it gets a little boring. This latest endeavor had me perusing my bookshelves the other day and I happened across a cookbook that a friend had given me a couple years ago, but I’d never really done anything with. 

The Frugal Foodie Cookbook”, by Alanna Kaufman and Alex Small touts a tagline of “200 Gourmet Recipes for Any Budget”. Needless to say, this was intriguing, so I dove into the book. Without yet having made any of the recipes, it looks like Kaufman and Small have produced a compact but complete well-rounded cookbook with a wide variety of recipes to suit any palate. While most of the recipes seem simple and a relatively easy skill level, they sound delicious and had me raring to try some.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

My Dating Hiatus

Image Credit: usamedeniz via FreeDigitalPhotos.net
The past two years of my life have been my most active in terms of dating and also my most miserable.

As a teenager and as a younger adult, I was never really focused on dating and relationships.  I’ve always been focused on other things.  Not being one of the pretty girls, it definitely made it easier to not worry about dating because no one even bothered to ask. I made it to 19 years old before anyone asked me out.

A few years ago, I reached a point in my life where I felt like I finally had my shit together.  I wanted to start thinking about being with someone, about settling down and, somewhere farther down the road, maybe even having a family.  The problem with this is that it appears I’ve missed my window. Don’t get me wrong. I’ve dated some “nice” guys over the past few years. But something always comes up. Sometimes it’s mutual, sometimes it’s them, and sometimes it’s me. But either way, I found myself getting caught up in the imaginary countdown of impending doom known as “I’M SO OLD”.