I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving, filled with family and pie, stretchy pants and a side of gravy. Today I’m here to wrap up some of my November favorites! I’ve got a slew of funny, inspiring, and holiday spirit-filled links to share with you, plus a peek into what I’ve been reading and doing outside the kitchen. So without further ado:
This month I dove back into the fiction world, but tried not to let it take over every free moment of my life. I was only semi-successful.
Water for Elephants– This book is the story of a young man, who, after losing everything he cares about, somewhat accidentally joins the circus. It’s at times wacky, at times charming, and at times crude, but I found myself rather liking this tale of love and friendship set in the wild world of America’s traveling circuses.
Everything I Never Told You– This book. Oh, where to begin with this book. It took me awhile to ease into the writing style of author Celeste Ng, but once I did I was hooked. This is a book about relationships. About disappointments and insecurities. About the promises we make and the wounds we carry. It is tragic and devastating, but not altogether lacking in hope. It’s the kind of book that makes you want to grab your family, hold them tight, and whisper I’m sorry and I love you all in one breath
Yes Please– Normally, I commit to waiting in line for new books through the library, but when Amy Poehler’s new release came out, I knew being 322nd on the waiting list just wasn’t going to cut it. This memoir is witty and insightful, like I imagined, but also different than expected. She discusses body image, drugs, show business, parenting, and relationships with a frankness that is refreshing, at times laugh at loud funny, and at times incredibly wise.
Apparently, I was sucked into the vortex that is BuzzFeed this month, because that’s where all of these come from. BuzzFeed you time-sucking devil. I love you and I hate you.
24 Reasons You Still Watch Seinfeld– These pretzels are making me thirsty!!
21 Photos Guaranteed to Make You Laugh Every Time– Normally I feel like these articles don’t deliver, but this one totally did!
21 Awesome Facts about Parks and Recreation– Am I the only one who can’t wait for the final season to start? What am I going to do without Leslie Knope, Ben Wyatt, April, Andy, and the rest of the gang? (Answer: Binge watch The Blacklist to fill the void).
America the Beautiful, America the Violent from Peter Chin- I have been watching the events at Ferguson unfold with emotions that ranged from despair to hope to anger to resignation. There is so much work to be done, not only in Ferguson, but across the United States. Peter Chin nails it on the head in this article. The events in Ferguson have told us much about race relations in America, but it also tells us something about our country’s reliance on and glorification of violence. I believe healing is possible, but it’s not going to be easy. Chin speaks wisely about Christians’ role in the healing process. After all, who better to speak into the hurt and chaos than those who have been transformed by the reconciling, redemptive work of Christ?
Stop Praying for Peace in Ferguson from A Real Rattlesnake Meets His Maker- You’d think after all that talk about violence, this is the last article I would choose to share with you. But I don’t know if I’ve read anything more powerful since the non-indictment came down. This line: “There are few things more despicable and unhelpful for Christians to be doing right now than condemning the “violence” of protestors while simultaneously ignoring the violence of the system.”
Adults and Kids Share One Thing They Would Change About Their Bodies from Huffington Post- If only we could all have the body image of a seven year old.
On Maintaining a Long Term Blog from 101 Cookbooks – “There’s a lot to be said about doing the work you want to be doing – and chipping away at it, regularly, as a practice, has the potential to help show you the way.”
Food Bloggers Share Their Top 5 Kitchen Tools– I had so much fun compiling this list from my food blogger friends. If you’re looking for ideas for someone who loves being in the kitchen, definitely check out this post! I guarantee you’ll find something to add to your list.
If you need more holiday inspiration, consider grabbing a gift card to Green Bean Delivery. They deliver fresh, local produce to several Midwest states. We’ve been using them for three years now and absolutely love it. Veggies at my door means less trips to the grocery store. Win!
Finally, check out my post from last year of Gifts That Gives Back. Find unique items that also support organizations who are working to help individuals get out of poverty, get an education, and support stable families.
I know this month was supposed to be all about turkey and taters, but I found myself gravitating more towards easy one pot meals and appetizers this month. Basically, if it was cheesy, carby, or made in a cast iron skillet, I was drooling over it.
Cheesy Sausage Pull Apart Breakfast Bake from Miss in the Kitchen- HeLLO perfect holiday breakfast!
Creamy Shrimp and Mushroom Pasta from Julia’s Album- Creamy, easy, made in a skillet. Check, check, check.
Buffalo Chicken Dip with Skillet Bread from The Wicked Noodle. I don’t even know what to say. I’m in love.
Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Skillet from Laughing Spatula- More easy skillet dinners for the win!
My most popular post this month was Johnny Marzetti and for good reason. It’s crowd pleasing comfort food. What’s not to love?
I don’t know about you, but I am fully in the Christmas spirits. Decorations are going up this weekend, Christmas music has been blasting for weeks now, and I may have even worn my Christmas socks once or twice. If you’re having trouble getting in the mood, just watch this video. I promise it’ll help.
What’s getting you in the Christmas spirit this season? Any new movies, books, or recipes on your must-make, must-see list? Tell me about it in the comments!
Happy December everyone!
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