Pico de Gallo Okay, it’s confession time. Up until a few months ago, I used to be pretty good at cooking meals to take to work for lunch. I’d gotten to the point where I cooked meals during the week and limited my take-out meals to the weekend. It took me a while to work myself up to that point and I was proud of my progress.

Then one day, I slipped. I ordered food during the week and it was just so. freaking. convenient. All you had to do was click a few buttons and within 30-45 minutes, someone brought food directly to your door. Then I went from ordering food 3-4 times a week to ordering food every single day. I didn’t have to go to the grocery store (which I really dislike doing here in the city) and I didn’t have to come home tired from work and then worry about cooking a meal- hooray!

If you don’t live in New York City, this might be very surprising to hear. There are so many sites here that offer free food delivery, you can pretty much find any kind of cuisine you’re looking for, and these sites are constantly offering discounts. I think there’s a joke about ovens in NYC apartments being used for storage, rather than cooking. Of course, that’s not everyone, but I think it’s more common than you might guess.

Anyways, all that is to say that I stopped cooking regularly and started ordering all of my meals. I’d still take lunch to work, but I’d carefully portion and stretch what I ordered to last throughout the week. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against ordering delivery and in some cases the cost/meal can still be pretty cheap. However, I would like to start cooking again for a few reasons:

- It will help me save money, which is always a good thing.

- Variety. There are certain things I don’t like to order because they don’t travel well and/or I prefer the homemade version.

- I do enjoy cooking from time to time and it can be really satisfying to make a meal that turns out well.

So I’m starting slow. Last night I went to the grocery store for the first time in months and I picked up a few things. I started with a simple chicken and orzo salad and I also made some pico de gallo, because last summer I discovered that homemade pico de gallo is the best. My goal is reasonable- I’d like to work back up to cooking about half my meals and ordering the rest, because I know I can’t quit Seamless cold turkey.

I’m really curious to hear other people’s thoughts on this topic. How often do you cook- a lot? a little? Are you shocked to hear my confession? If you do cook regularly, what keeps you motivated? If you have any tips for me, I’d love to hear them!

(image via)

Battery Gardens 600x600

It’s been a little while since I shared what was happening in my life, so I thought I would just write today and fill you guys in. Nothing terribly exciting has happened, but there have been a few fun nights with good friends!

On Thursday I…went to my roommate’s annual company party. Sometimes our friends joke that we’re like an old married couple because we bicker like one and then we do things like go to work functions together. It was my third year going with him and I dressed up a little and headed there straight after work. The weather was absolutely perfect that night- warm, but not humid, with a soft breeze blowing over the water. There was an open bar and free food and I was chatting with some of his colleagues outside when we witnessed one of the loveliest sunsets I’ve seen recently.

On Friday I… headed to work in the morning and got out around 1.00pm thanks to Summer Fridays. Then went back home and took advantage of the natural light to film a video for my youtube channel. After a few hours of reading, I was rather hungry, so I texted my roommate. It turns out he was planning to have dinner with a work friend at the Thai restaurant across the street from our apartment. Five minutes later I was dressed and meeting them downstairs for a cheap and tasty meal.

On Saturday I… was rather tired. I’d been tired all week and as a result, I took a nap on Friday afternoon for about an hour. Well that totally screwed up my sleeping schedule and I wasn’t able to go to sleep until around 5.30am on Saturday morning. Somehow I still woke up at 8am and got started with my day. The daytime involved a lot more reading (I was aiming to finish book six for the read-a-thon), and watching some TV, as well as youtube videos. In the evening my roomie and I headed to Central Park to meet a couple of friends. We shared a bottle of wine in the park and then headed to a restaurant in the Upper East Side called Cilantro. There I had a very large and very delicious mango margarita, along with an order of calamari. Afterwards we headed to a nearby bar where they rang a bell every time a keg was finished, and from there to our friend’s apartment to chill.

On Sunday I… had a lot of reading to do. This was the last day of the read-a-thon and I’d saved the biggest book for last. One of the challenges was to read a book-to-movie adaptation and watch the movie, and for that I’d chosen The Princess Bride by William Goldman. I’ve seen the movie several times but I’d never read the book. I can now happily say that the book is as delightful as the movie and I really enjoyed rewatching the movie just after finishing the book. Other than that, I worked on some stuff for the blog, filmed a couple more videos, and painted my nails (a key part of my Sunday rituals).

Now you’re all caught up! I hope I didn’t bore you with these little life updates, but I enjoy reading posts like these and I hope you do too. Now it’s your turn…

Tell me: What’s been going on with you lately?
What’s something you did recently, or something that happened in your life?

weekend reading 600x900 Friday, you’re my fave. This is another one of those weeks that dragged on, but hey, we made it, and now it’s Friday. I’ve been participating in a read-a-thon all week (I’m attempting to start and finish 7 books!) and so far it’s been going well. The goal for the weekend is to take advantage of the extra hours for reading. Other than that, I have no major plans, although I wouldn’t be surprised if I went to brunch one day or enjoyed some time in the park. Here are a few good links to carry you into the weekend:

- It’s been a long time since I clicked on to the Cosmo website, but I really enjoyed this interview with Jill Abramson, the first female executive editor of The New York Times.

- Hallie curated an awesome guide of things to do in New York City this summer.

- A great article from Zadie Smith on what it means to be addicted to reading.

- Chelsea shared the loveliest film photos from her recent trip to Italy.

- I’m not sure why, but I’ve been listening to this old Juanes album on repeat this week and it’s still so good.

- I found it interesting to read these thoughts on designing a book cover.

Solange is on the cover of Lucky Magazine’s August issue- my love for her continues.

- I just heard about this cool tumblr called Subway Book Review. This blogger snaps pictures of people reading on the subway and asks them to give a mini review of the book.

Hope you have a good weekend!

(image via)


Tropical Print

I don’t know about where you live, but here in NYC we’ve been experiencing a lot of thunderstorms lately. I kind of like drifting off to the sound of rain at night, but they’re not so fun when they’re surprise thunderstorms and you’re caught without your umbrella! I feel like the tropical print trend fits in really well with this weather- when it’s monsoon season in the tropics, the rains can stop and start suddenly without warning. There are so many variations on this theme and today I’m sharing a few of my favorite picks.

Tell me: How do you feel about tropical print? Would you wear it?

(tee, skirt, bikini, dress, sneakers, shorts, tank)