Sincerely Seven: Week 38

It was a good week (until Friday of course), but we’ve been trying to make plans for coming back to the East Coast for the holidays. Should we only come for ~2 weeks at Christmas, and board our cat, OR fly in before Thanksgiving and stay through Christmas, bringing our cat with us on the plane? I know these are things people do all the time (mainly flying with cats), I just feel SO bad at the thought of putting her through all that stress. It is nice that we could both work anywhere, AND it would be great to see family and friends. Though who knows how bad COVID will be come the holidays, so who knows how much we could even see our family and friends. *sigh. So much to decide (and if you know me, I hate decisions, I get anxious that I haven’t made a decision which makes it even harder).

These cookies are SO tasty!
  1. To say I was devastated when I heard about the passing of RBG is an understatement. Ruth, thank you for everything you did to fight for gender equality and for working tirelessly to ensure this democracy was one of fairness and equality for all. You deserve the rest.
  2. If you can, please consider donating in honor of RBG to Amy McGrath who is up for election against Mitch McConnell. On Friday, McConnell announced the Senate would push forward with trying to elect a new justice this year, only hours after it was announced RBG had passed, and that her dying wish was that her seat would be replaced under the new president. But Mitch, what happened to your stance 4 years ago?
  3. This past week was Mexican Independence Day. For those of you who aren’t clear, there’s a difference between Mexican Independence Day and Cinco De Mayo. I honestly didn’t know the difference either, since we only covered important white people events in my education, so this article was very insightful.
  4. Converse came out with their ¡Mi Gente! Collection and a friend/old co-worker of mine was one of the Latina designers who came up the concept and designed a shoe style. Love seeing her work and culture showcased in this way!
  5. These Neapolitan Cookies are delicious, also see how cute they look above! I got the recipe from 100 Cookies by Sarah Kieffer, but Hummingbird High posted an adapted recipe and I had to share!
  6. Did anyone see this coming? Paris Hilton revealed her real voice, and that she was playing a character for the last several years. I am shocked, but also sad she felt the need to do that? As a blonde, I’ve also purposely played dumb at certain times, though I hate to admit it. I also heard her documentary, The Real Story of Paris Hilton, is really good, but haven’t had time to watch.
  7. It’s the first day of fall this coming week! And what better way to celebrate than a trip to Trader Joe’s to get all the fall foods! The pumpkin waffles, pumpkin bread mix and spiced cider are some of my TJ fall favs!

Wishing everyone a beautiful week ahead and happy Fall!

Sincerely,

Sara Ann

Sincerely Seven: Week 33

Goodness gracious, it’s toasty in LA this weekend; I’ve coped by staying indoors in the AC and doing basically next to nothing (another weekend in the Q, what’s new). I’ve built more Sims houses (can’t stop, won’t stop) and haven’t read much of the book I’m on (it’s good, but slow). Siiiiiigh. Anyone else in a slump? Or just bored? Or have you all gone back into the world, quarantine be damned? …Is anyone there?

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Nothing really happened this week other than I put this Disney eyes filter on my cat… a lot. 

  1. This week, Joe Biden picked Kamala Harris to be his running mate (was that THIS week? Seems like ages ago to be honest). I was a bit surprised since these two seemed to really go at each other during the debates, but loved this article that broke down why Biden picked Harris over others. Overall though, love this move for women AND cannot wait to hear ‘Madama Vice President.’
  2. You all know I live in an apartment in LA, so I don’t come by backyard fires and s’mores very easily these days; this deep dish s’mores bowl is SO tasty and easy and made me feel content and cozy in my fifth floor apartment.
  3. In a (non)surprising turn, many colleges are changing their minds about reopening/allowing flocks of students to return. I’ve been keeping an eye on this for awhile, but if you’re a college freshman, STOP what you’re doing, do not start at an expensive school, stay at home and go to the local community college to get your 101 classes completed this year. You will save SO much money.
  4. Chrissy Teigen is pregnant with baby No. 3 and I’m honestly so happy for her (is that weird?), especially after she tweeted how she conceived this child naturally, AND has been taking pregnancy tests every month since she was 21 hoping for a positive that would come naturally.
  5. If you haven’t noticed, a lot of fashion companies are filing for bankruptcy and closing stores. It’s so sad to see my LinkedIn feed these days, it’s mostly colleagues or friends of colleagues who are posting about having been let go from their jobs, as their companies are doing rounds of layoffs to stay afloat.  I’m worried it will only get worse as the pandemic continues and fall and winter loom in the distance.
  6. If you love cooking shows, love Selena Gomez, or just watched everything on all the services and have nothing new to watch, check out HBO’s new show, ‘Selena + Chef.‘ It’s cute and delightful, and I really want to make the ramen and the matcha cookies that Chef Candice taught Selena how to make.
  7. Finally, and MOST importantly, buy some stamps!!

Hoping for a more exciting week ahead!

Sincerely,

Sara Ann

Happy One Year, LA

I’ve lived in Los Angeles, CA for one year. It’s actually insane to me that it’s been a whole YEAR. 365 days. 130 of which (give or take) have been spent inside my apartment due to COVID. I guess I’ve enjoyed it, at least the time I was allowed to be out doing things, when things were open. It is weird living in a tourist destination; I can remember walking out of my work office (when I went to the office), and seeing a ‘Hollywood’ tour bus passing by as passengers snapped pictures on their phones to capture scenes of WeHo. I sometimes wonder how many pictures I am in that I will never see. When I am driving to the farmer’s market and swarms of people are posing in front of the ‘Beverly Hills’ sign near Rodeo Drive, but I’m just going to buy vegetables. Almost everywhere, everyone is posing for pictures, whether it be a tourist or an influencer/wannabe celebrity. It’s so strange.

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It’s also strange being 20 minutes from the beach. I’ve hardly even gone if I’m being honest, having grown up in the Appalachian mountains, I don’t even think about my close proximity to water and the days I could spend lying in the sand. I do love the sun though. Sunshine and no humidity, all day, every day? Yes, please! It almost makes me want to stay forever, that and the wide range of cultural food options. Some days, I can not imagine ever heading back east to chop suey, humidity and snow.

LA, here’s to another year; hopefully I can get out and enjoy you more in the next.

Sincerely,

Sara Ann

Sincerely Seven: Week 27

It was so nice having a three day weekend this past week, even though we sat around our apartment for most of it. I really have been thinking about trying to book some kind of trip so I can take a vacation, but with COVID on the rise again, I am too afraid to go anywhere, especially coming from Los Angeles. I also don’t want to take a week off work to sit around my apartment because who knows when it’ll be safe to go anywhere again.

On that somewhat depressing note, here are seven things that got me through this week, also including this very tasty patriotic donut.

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USA Donut from the always delicious, SK Donuts

  1. This 4 Cheese and Mushroom Lasagna might be my favorite recipe of all time. I also love most of the recipes from The Modern Proper, so would recommend checking out their blog!
  2. Who would you consider to be the most influential president? If you said Abe Lincoln, like literally everyone, you might want to watch this video, The Legacy of Abe Lincoln. It’s a bit long but very informative, looking at the way that history is written by the victors, not the losers, so often, half of the story isn’t told.
  3. I got to pick my Book of the Month book this week, I chose The Beauty in the Breaking by Michele Harper. Check out Book of the Month here, I would really recommend it if you’re a big reader! You get to choose from 5 books to select your book of the month for $14.99 and can choose add ons as well. I am a big fan, if you can’t tell.
  4. I LOVED this The Dissenters podcast episode with Sophia Bush. If you’re short on time, start around 27 minutes in, but I would encourage listening to the whole thing!
  5. I’ve been watching Padma Lakshmi’s new show, Taste The Nation, on Hulu and I would really recommend. It’s interesting to learn the origins of foods, and how American culture around food was formed.
  6. Here is an interesting article about politicizing the wearing of face masks which is creating a large problem and dehumanizing the issue at hand.
  7. Did anyone else spend their weekend watching Hamilton on Disney+? It was my first time ever seeing/hearing the songs and it was so great! Here is a great history fact guide that lets you know what did and didn’t really happen in Alexander Hamilton’s life that was interesting.

I hope your week went well and that you were able to safely celebrate the Fourth! Wear your masks and stay well this week ahead!

Sincerely,

Sara Ann

Sincerely Seven: Week 25

I thought I would kick off something new called, Sincerely Seven, where I recap my week, tell you something new or share an article or recipe that I found useful over the last seven days. I’m hoping it will encourage me to write on here more, plus share some nuggets that I found useful or interesting over the course of my week. Without further ado, here are my seven highlights from week 25 of 2020.

  1.  I took a 3 day weekend and it was so lovely to not have work on Friday. Since COVID started, I haven’t taken any time off, mostly because it feels weird taking time off when I work from home. It was well needed and I enjoyed every minute, plus I finally got my hair done so back to blonde baby! Sadly semi wishing I had taken off tomorrow too..
  2. In listening to this week’s episode of Work in Progress, I learned why you shouldn’t eat any more shrimp. I’m officially done, and trying to do anything I can to save the ocean.
  3.  I found this recipe for marinated goat cheese and strawberry crostini this week and it sounds SO yummy. I need to run to Trader Joe’s to get some goat cheese and french bread ASAP.
  4. I personally purchased the book, White Fragility, but then I read this article and have decided not to read it. Just wanted to share since I shared that book title earlier on my blog; I would be curious if anyone has read it, what did you think?
  5. I finished the show “Love Life” on HBO and would highly recommend; Anna Kendrick’s character is very lovable and experiences a lot of character development throughout the show/her love life. I also started “Dear White People” on Netflix; though I’m only one episode in, I really like it so far. Logan Browning plays a very fierce lead, helping to highlight the racial issues on her predominantly white college campus.
  6.  I’m currently reading Normal People by Sally Rooney and I can’t put it down! I also can’t wait to start the show after I finish. Has anyone already read/watched?
  7.  I made this chocolate chip cookie and it’s too pretty not to share with the world (since I’m off social media). You can make them too with this recipe from one of the best bakeries in Columbus, OH.

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I hope you had a wonderful week and here’s to wishing for another great seven days ahead!

Sincerely,

Sara Ann

Homesick, Kind Of.

Since moving to LA, I haven’t really been homesick, if I’m being totally honest. Yes, there have been moments when my family was gathering and I was thousands of miles away that made me a little bummed, but nothing that made me genuinely want to be somewhere else. Since I’ve been “on my own” for a few years now, it’s been easier and easier to hang up after a Skype with my family and not feel sad.

That is, until recently. I had a wave of homesickness at the most unexpected moment. And truth be told, it wasn’t even a homesickness for my actual home.

It happened at the dentist. I finally made an appointment to see a dentist here in LA. Upon arriving, I was greeted and taken back to the room, my dental hygienist not saying much at all. The dentist himself was nice, but it just seemed off, like I can’t quite put my finger on it, you know? While I was waiting for him to come back to the room, I almost started crying; I had a wave of sadness hit and I realized that I missed my dentist in Ohio. Dr. Clark was so genuine and helpful. He always took time to answer any questions or just ask about my day. I missed my dental hygienist, Whitney, who was so kind and bubbly and warm; her chatter always made me forget about any nerves or anxieties.

In that moment, I would have given anything to be in the dental chair in New Albany, Ohio instead of LA. I wanted to walk out, if I’m being perfectly honest. I just wanted to cry. I hadn’t really felt that way since many years before, when I had first moved away from home in PA to live in Columbus. And maybe it’s all the craziness that’s happening in the world today that pushed me to the brink, but that day at the dentist, I found that I truly missed someone, some place so badly, that it made Ohio feel even more like home. And while LA is fun and I’ll never regret moving here, I can’t wait for the day I get to return to the buckeye state (O-H!)

Sincerely,

Sara Ann