Real Life: The Wisdom of Insecurity

photo via superfamous 2

Alright, some real talk today. In the last couple years, while some wonderful, beautiful things have happened, life has been really good at serving up one shit sandwich after another. And over the last couple of months, things certainly haven’t gotten easier (tastier?). I’ve opted not to share too much about the turmoil happening in my personal life, just because family members have asked me to keep it on the DL, but to get the gist across, imagine all the stress of moving across the country, triple it, remove the last ounces of certainty you had in your life, then add a surprise double heaping of grief on top of it. The therapy practically pays for itself these days, and the stories for the Lifetime movie are only getting crazier.

In the midst of trying not to lose my mind, one thing that has helped immensely — even on the days when “immense” amounts to only a tiny bit — is meditating. The first time I ever practiced meditation was after I read the book Clean several years ago. Inspired by the book, I remember sitting in my bedroom, trying to clear my mind, and thinking I really, really sucked at it. I quit trying, but the idea behind it — that you could learn to acknowledge and then watch your thoughts flit in and out of your mind, but not really engage with them — was intriguing to me.

photo via superfamous 1

Fast forward to a couple years ago, when I took up a yoga practice. Without even realizing it, I would find myself meditating in class, and it surprised me by how spiritual it was. I began connecting with and noticing my breathing more, and specifically, how if I just slowed the eff down for a second, concentrated on my breath, and followed each inhale and exhale, the tight fist knotted in the center of my body (you know the one — it feels like it’s holding all your anxiety and worry) would slowly start to release its death grip on me.

More recently, I finished the book 10% Happier, and loved it. As I was reading the book, I made lots of highlight notations throughout. The first sentence I highlighted in the book is this: “Most of us are so entranced by the nonstop conversation we’re having with ourselves that we aren’t even aware we have a voice in our head.” How true this is. Another section I noted related to the idea of security (and its inverse, insecurity). Here’s the quote:  Read the full post +

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Images: Via Superfamous; Photo 1, Photo 2, Photo 3. Used under Creative Commons Attribution License 3.0

This month's quote: "Take your pleasure seriously."

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Happy Monday! I had a very relaxing weekend filled with lots of time to myself (I think I really needed it), and as a result, have a couple cool things I discovered and wanted to share with you today. I’ve been meaning to read the book The American Heiress for several years now, since I judged the book cover (positively!) the first time I ever saw it and love me a good historical fiction novel. After plowing through it this weekend, I thought the book was just okay. But because of it, I started looking around online and found this awesome online exhibit of Gilded Age fashions created by the house of Charles Frederick Worth (who’s mentioned many times in the book as THE couturier for the wealthy during this era). This exhibition goes into wonderful detail about the designs, who wore the dresses, and offers an awesome zoom feature that allows you to really see each pieces’ details (I mean, the velvet on the first dress. Wow.). The Gilded Age has always been an interesting time in American history to me; now, living in New York, it’s even more fascinating! If you love a good costume exhibition, you must check this out.  Read the full post +

In this post:

Images each courtesy of: Museum of the City of New York  |  Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee  |  Sézane

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Recipe: Baked Chicken Nuggets

Make a double batch. You won't regret it.

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Processed with VSCOcam with s3 preset

Processed with VSCOcam with s3 preset

This past weekend, I decided to stay in with Joe and avoid the NYFW madness (and the maddening humidity) and watch our alma mater play a little football. A big game deserves delicious, tailgate inspired snacks, and I had an idea to make some oven fried chicken using a few chicken thighs we had on hand. Then, I realized something dippable — and in nugget form — would be infinitely less complicated to make, and a lot more fun to eat!

When is the last time you had chicken nuggets? I’ll admit, I can be a bit of a snob about these types of things (read: probably wouldn’t order from a fast food chain), so it’s been a while for me. I didn’t want to go through the process of deep frying, so I looked around a bit for recipe inspiration. Enter this technique from (who else?) Martha Stewart: you toast the crunchy panko breadcrumbs before you adhere them to the chicken, which ensures a super crisp crust. And, these babies bake in mere minutes. You can serve ‘em up with a basic bowl of ketchup, or get fancy and make your own dipping sauces. We were in the mood for spicy, Asian inspired flavors, so I whipped up a sweet and spicy honey chili sauce, with lots of garlic and cilantro. It was delish!

If you’re planning on hosting any game day parties, or just want a quick snack for you or any little ones, give this one a try. Super simple to make, and so much lighter than the deep fried fast food version! Here’s what you do:  Read the full post +

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Images by Victoria McGinley, and via my Instagram