pics post: inflation station

Happy Thanksgiving! Here’s a bunch of really big balloons getting blown up:






chicken and waffle (fries) casserole


I made my first ever casserole guys! In my typical throw-a-bunch-of-stuff-together-and-see-how-it-turns-out cooking style. I used just four ingredients:

  • 4 chicken breasts*
  • 1 can green beans
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • Frozen waffle fries (as many as you damn well please)

Layered in that order and baked at 375 for 40 minutes. Easy peasy!

*I have no idea if you’re supposed to use raw or cooked meat when making a casserole, so to be safe I boiled the chicken first.

random goings-on

The worst feeling is when you’re balancing your checkbook and discovered you’ve somehow misplaced a dollar…and you can’t find out where.

I’m trying very hard to convince myself that it’s not time to buy eggnog yet. Must wait a few more weeks…

The weather in New York has me very confused lately, because while it looks like the beginning of school (brown leaves and crisp autumn sunshine) it feels like the end of school (warm and muggy). This confusion is exacerbated by the fact that it’s now dark when I get off of work. What month is it??

I love living in an age where talking on the phone is almost always optional. (#introvert)

I know I probably shouldn’t be using the C-word yet (especially since it hasn’t even dropped below 50 degrees yet), but I’ve already got (most of) my Christmas presents planned and that’s a very good feeling. (I’m especially excited about the present I got my little brother…I think I’ll earn a few big sister points.)


What’s up with all ya’ll lately?

pumpkin spice pancake muffins

Pumpkin Spice Pancake Muffins

I’ve never jumped on the pumpkin spice bandwagon before. I’ve never really been interested in trying a pumpkin spice latte, and I (gasp!) don’t care that much for pumpkin pie. (I know, I know, it’s un-American.)

But this year, I’ve decided my goal for autumn is to try my very first PSL. And to ease myself into it, I tried a variation on one of my favorite things to bake: pancake muffins. (Which are literally just pancake batter baked in a muffin pan.)

Here’s how I made the PSPMs:

  1. Using pancake mix, make a batch of batter. (I used the smallest serving recipe, which was 1 cup mix and 3/4 cups water. I use a just-add-water mix, but if you’re using a different kind you might want to follow the directions on the box.)
  2. This is where I stopped measuring, but here’s my best estimate for what I used: 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1.5-2 tsps. pumpkin pie spice, 1/2 tsp. each allspice and cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract. Mix all these into your pancake batter. (Of course you can adjust to taste.)
  3. Pour mix into lined muffin pan (yields about 6), bake at 350 for 18-20 minutes.
  4. Eat.


the will & grace tour

Anyone who knows has met me knows that Will & Grace is my favorite TV show, ever. So how convenient that I should happen to live where the show is set. (No, that’s not the reason I moved to New York…well, not the only reason.)

I decided that while I was living here, it might be cool to see some of the places that were used in exterior shots on the show. So I hopped on the F train (or as Grace Adler calls it, “the effing train!”), and started out by going downtown to see the Puck Building, aka Grace’s office.


Then to the Upper East Side for a peek at Karen Walker’s mansion:


Back down to Midtown East to the Palace Hotel, where Karen lives for a while:


And another train west to the UBS building, aka Will Truman’s office:


And last but not least, I headed uptown to the Upper West Side to the apartment building where Will, Grace, and Jack live:


(This may all seem really geeky, but I’m going to be so excited next time I’m watching Will & Grace and can say “I was there!!”)

dumbo, chinatown, and the bridge in between


I originally had the idea to walk the Manhattan Bridge so that I could get some good shots of the Brooklyn Bridge (which I’ve already walked twice). When I found out it connected two neighborhoods I had been meaning to explore, I decided to make a day of it.



I started out in Brooklyn, walking around DUMBO (that’s Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass–those New Yorkers love their acronyms), before heading up to the bridge for the main attraction.




Once I touched down in Manhattan, I took a quick stroll around Chinatown…



…before ending my day with some apple bacon pizza and a rose lemonade (my new favorite beverage that isn’t coffee).


prospect park

Last weekend I rolled into Prospect Park with the intention of exploring the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, only to find out that admission was $12!! I’ve only been to one other botanic garden before (here), but does anyone else find it odd that it wasn’t free? I guess that’s New York for you.

So, determined not to waste the commute, I strolled through the park instead. Less exotic but just as enjoyable.









pics post: manhattanhenge

Manhattanhenge was actually over a month ago, and the reason I didn’t post about it right away is that my photos of the actual big moment were quite disappointing. But I still got some shots I liked while I was waiting on 34th Street. So here’s Midtown in all its sunset-y glory:

Manhattan (1)

Manhattan (2)

Manhattan (3)

Manhattan (4)

Manhattan (5)


first nyc-versary

One year ago today I stepped off a plane at Laguardia, and…my new roommates weren’t home from work yet so I sat in the terminal for two hours reading a magazine.

A lot has happened in the year I’ve been living in New York. I’ve had two jobs, I’ve lived in three of the five boroughs, and I have eaten a lot of pizza and drank a lot of coffee. I think I’ve changed a little too. For example, this is me riding the subway in August 2014:


And this is me riding the subway in August 2015:

I’ve pretty much had this exact monologue in my head multiple times.

Happy anniversary, New York. I love ya. Even if the subway is torture on the weekends.

ladies’ literature


“There is nothing gutsier to me than a person announcing that their story is one that deserves to be told, especially if that person is a woman. As hard as we have worked and as far as we have come, there are still so many forces conspiring to tell women that our concerns are petty, our opinions aren’t needed, that we lack the gravitas necessary for our stories to matter. That personal writing by women is no more than an exercise in vanity and that we should appreciate this new world for women, sit down, and shut up.” –Lena Dunham, “Not That Kind of Girl”

So I inadvertently ended up consecutively checking out three books that all fall under the same genre; personal nonfiction by women. I’ve been going out of my YA comfort zone lately, and I’m glad that doing so introduced me to the works of these talented women.

Hyperbole and a Half, based on the web comic of the same name, is a series of comics about cartoonist Allie Brosh’s life. Some of her comics are endearing, and others are flat-out hilarious. (Her childhood struggle with the letter R had me laughing so hard I was convulsing and sobbing at the same time.) Check out her web comic here.

Wild by Cheryl Strayed surprised me; I wasn’t sure how much I would actually like the story of a woman trying to “find herself” by hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, but I found myself getting really involved in Strayed’s emotional journey. (And wincing at some of the stuff she went through on her physical journey—too-small boots and an overly heavy backpack? Yikes.)

Lena Dunham’s book of autobiographical essays was mildly entertaining, but I wasn’t really able to relate to most of it. I briefly skimmed the (mostly bad) reviews of Not That Kind of Girl on Goodreads, and one of the big complaints seemed to be about Dunham’s privilege. Yes, Lena Dunham is extremely privileged (evidenced by her casual mentioning of her family’s summer house and her sister’s $200 jeans), but does that mean she isn’t allowed to tell her stories? Silencing one voice does not make other voices heard.

Have you read any of the above books? Or any other good autobiographies?

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