as my first year of grad school comes to an end…

I consider the fact that, if I’m planning on taking a full load of courses each summer and graduating in August of 2013, my first year of grad school won’t actually be over until July 31st, when I have my last class until after Labor Day. But I’ll write this anyway.

I don’t want to do a sappy post of realizations and accomplishments and failures, so I’ll instead post some lists. I love lists. I have always loved making lists.

The first list: Words I have had to teach my computer this year so as to get rid of the annoying red squiggly underline Continue reading


I kind of abandoned my food blog because I have too much stuff going on, but that doesn’t mean I abandoned my interest in food, health, or food books. I think that’s a love that will last a lifetime. But it’s always good to be reminded of why and how you stay healthy and happy through food. I think it’s especially important since I’ve otherwise been making so many other awesome, positive changes in my life. That’s why I recently read Susan Albers’ Eating Mindfully and The Naked Foods Cookbook by Margaret Floyd.

There’s something about buying a Kindle that makes you more willing to read self-help books. Eating Mindfully can definitely be categorized as such, but it also makes some really good points about eating smaller meals, enjoying the smell of your food before you eat it, and taking time to enjoy the entire process of food, from buying the groceries to chopping them up. Albers brings up psychological and physiological reasons to eat more slowly and mindfully, and makes points that should appeal to a variety of readers, from those who are interested in New Age sap and those who just want to lose weight. She quotes Buddha, cites quotes and results from her own patients, and gives little exercises to do. You can write yourself a mindful eating contract, learn how to meditate, or take time to use your five senses. Continue reading


Like any girl who grew up in America, and like any girl who has an older sister she worships, my musical taste has changed, refined, and solidified as I’ve grown older. I had my middle school phase where I listened to anything that was on Top 40 radio, and there are still some things from the 1997-2003 time period that I will always love, defend, and unabashedly listen to, even if I know it’s absolutely terrible. And there are other things that are actually kind of underrated, like the fact that those manufactured pop groups like N Sync and Eden’s Crush were actually very well trained singers, just stuck in the bodies of fakely attractive people and forced to sing really terrible songs.

Anyway. My main genres when I was young were Motown, show tunes, jazz-pop standards, and pop-inflecting R&B. I could count on my sister getting me the latest Mariah Carey, Destiny’s Child, or Alicia Keys CD for each birthday and Chrismukkah. I listened to them extensively, and to this day, even in the age of iPods and playlists and listening to single songs and not albums, if I hear a song off of one of these ladies’ albums I know exactly which song should come next in the track listing.

But then I transferred from the very urban middle school I went to to private school, and then I discovered lots of other music, both that satisfied my ear and that spoke to the major angst I had. Also, it helped that liking music that my classmates liked helped me to fit in, since so much of the way I acted seemed not to do that for me. Continue reading