Something happens to me at 3 o’clock every day during work. I get a ravenous craving for something at once sweet, salty and crunchy. In my past life (aka, before I cared about the connection of food and health), I would have raided my cupboards for salty pretzels, those soft-baked Chips Ahoy cookies, and oh, maybe even peanut M&M’s. Mmm… But by now, I’ve learned to satisfy the craving with a handful of roasted nuts and dried fruit, or garlicky hummus with carrots and Mary’s Gone Crackers. This craving can probably be attributed to the natural energy dip near . . .
As painful as it may be to accept, the last days of summer are upon us; it's not even September yet and we're already waking up to 55ºF mornings here in Syracuse. It's always a little sad to say "see ya later" to summer, but I for one am ready for sweater weather and weekend hikes through crunchy orange leaves. And don't forget all that fall baking! I'll take anything and everything with cinnamon, plzzz. Since the abundance of local summer produce will start to dwindle soon, too (well, at least here in the northeast), I figured now is the perfect time to round up . . .
When I still lived in Ditmas Park, one of my favorite Friday night activities was to order a giant burrito from one of the awesome Mexican places nearby (Cinco de Mayo and Los Mariachis, if you must know). I would devour it on my bed, in my 'jammies, while sipping on a Sixpoint Sweet Action, and watching Netflix. I realize it's not the most glamorous activity for a gal to engage in on a Friday night, but after an exhausting week of work, rubbing shoulders with strangers at some crowded bar is no longer my idea of a good time. Can I get a "hell yeah!" from my fellow . . .
It's been over one week of my new life in Syracuse, and if you get my newsletter, you already know that I survived the move and things are going a-okay so far. First off, we love our new house, which has a backyard and a washer-drier (luxuries for city folk like us); we've already planted a small vegetable garden - and done several loads of free laundry, in case you were wondering. Turns out, it's pretty nice to be away from city stresses like crowds and noise, and to be surrounded by trees and greenery on a daily basis. Touché, Central New York. One of the best . . .
Are you sick of me talking about Cape Cod yet? If yes, I’m #sorrynotsorry… The thing is, we kind of live for this annual retreat from reality, and I honestly don’t know how people who don’t have a tradition like this stay sane throughout the year. This will be my last post on the topic - promise! (Until next summer, that is). As mentioned last week, this tradition was conceived nearly twenty years ago (!!!) by Rene’s aunt and her college friends - all of whom immigrated to the US from Poland around the same time in the late eighties/early nineties. All of their kids . . .
Rene and I had just spent a gorgeous day at the beach - complete with fried calamari and ice cream at our favorite ocean-view shack - and were driving back to the campground to start prepping a communal dinner with 20 or so of his closest Polish family friends. We stopped at a little farm-stand on the road to pick up some produce. I wasn't sure what I wanted to contribute to the meal, but seeing as it's been bright hot all day, we were in the mood for a salad. On the shelves, I saw some plump orange tomatoes, ripe peaches and fresh corn, side by side. I . . .
My childhood home was 10 minutes away from the beach by foot. From late spring up until September 1st - the first day of the Ukrainian school year - my mom would take my sister and I to the beach every single day. To clarify, she took us as well as a handful of other neighborhood kids; other times, we'd be taken by someone else's mom. Most days we'd get there by 8 a.m. to claim the coveted spot as close to the water as possible. The beach in Odessa is unlike any other I've been to since. The sand is fine and soft, the Black Sea warm, gentle and shallow. We'd hang . . .