How to Make Eggs

I recently watched a TikTok where a girl was sobbing about how “it” never ends. She panned to piles of dirty laundry and a sink full of dishes.

The video was duet-ed by a woman who explained that “care” never ends. You will always have laundry to do, dishes to clean, bookshelves to dust, etc. She explained that your level of “care” fluctuates, depending on what you have going on in your life.

A really important “care” thing for me is knowing how to make food. Sure, sometimes care looks like Postmating Thai food, but the need to nourish your body never ends and money does (otherwise I would be ordering Thai food for every meal for the rest of my life). That’s where cooking comes in.

I didn’t realize how few of my friends knew how to boil or fry an egg until quarantine began. Please believe me when I tell you that I had three different people text me about this.

A desire to learn is worthy of applause, as is a desire to care for oneself.

If you are a person with access to a kitchen with a stove, have a frying pan and a small pot, and want to learn to cook eggs for yourself but never learned how, THIS IS FOR YOU!!!

I promise, this is all easy as hell. Even if you’ve never done it before.

Plus, you’re not just learning how to hard boil an egg, you’re half of the way to making egg salad or a breakfast sandwich or a pasta topping.

HOW TO MAKE A HARD BOILED EGG

There are two ways of doing this, but I’m going to teach you the way my grandma taught me, which I think is the easiest. You will need a pot, so something with tall sides that can hold a lot of water, a spoon, some water and then as many eggs as you want to make.

  1. Fill a small pot with water and set it on a stove burner at a high heat.
  2. Bring your pot of water to a boil on the stove. You will know it is boiling when the water is bubbling.
  3. Take your spoon and gently put an egg on it and place the egg into the boiling water. Do this GENTLY. You’re trying not to crack the egg.
  4. Take the spoon out
  5. Set a timer on your phone for 8 minutes (if you like your egg yolk to be a little runny) or 9 minutes (for a firmer egg).
  6. DO NOT TOUCH THE WATER LET IT KEEP BOILING
  7. When the timer goes off, TURN OFF THE WATER.
  8. Take your spoon and scoop the egg out of the pot. You can either leave it on the counter to cool or run it under cold sink water (while it balances on the spoon) until it is cool enough to touch.
  9. When it is cool enough, you can peel the shell off the egg. My best advice for peeling the shell off is to 1. GET A PAPER TOWEL. 2. Put the egg on the paper towel. 3. Gently crush the egg with your palm (don’t flatten it so it explodes. Be gentle!), rolling it back and forth a little until cracks form all over. Then peel all the crunchy part off.
  10. Throw your shell away. I recommend pouring a little salt and pepper on your plate and dipping your egg into the mixture for a lil flavor.

WANT TO TURN YOUR HARD BOILED EGGS INTO EGG SALAD?

Boil and peel 4 eggs (assuming you’re making egg salad for 1 person. If you’re making it for two, I would double the amount of everything). Cut the eggs up on a plate or cutting board. It doesn’t really matter how. You could also put them all into a bowl and mash them. You do you. But you’re going to need to combine your eggs in a bowl anyway, with some mayo (I would recommend about 1/4 cup but you can eyeball it), about 1 squirt of yellow mustard, chopped up green onion, pepper, salt and paprika. Mix it all up with a fork. Voila! You just made egg salad. Put it on some toasted bread or eat it with peppers and pickles if you’re a TikToker.

HOW TO MAKE SCRAMBLED EGGS

My boyfriend is practically a genius, so when we started living together I was stunned to discover that he doesn’t know how to make scrambled eggs.

That, or he is completely pulling my leg and doesn’t want to make breakfast.

There are many different ways to make scrambled eggs. However, you don’t need to do it the fancy French way, or add milk or a ton of butter. All you need is two eggs (three if you’re really hungry), a small bowl, 1 fork, a frying pan, a wooden spoon or spatula and some sort of fat, like butter or olive oil.

  1. Crack your eggs into a small bowl. If you get eggshell in there, take one of the halves of the already broken shell and fish out the tiny piece that got way. Shell attracts shell. My grandma taught me that and it is probably the best piece of advice I have ever been given.
  2. Take your fork and stab the yellow yolks until they don’t look like perfect circles anymore. Then, mix the eggs together. You should be left with a yellow-y mixture.
  3. Set the bowl aside.
  4. Take your pan and set it on a stove burner. Turn the burner to medium-high heat.
  5. Let the pan get hot. You’ll know it’s hot (DON’T TOUCH IT) when you hold your hand over it, and you can feel the heat.
  6. Turn the heat down to low.
  7. Throw some butter or olive oil in there. Not a lot. If you want to use a measurement I would say 1/2 a teaspoon of olive oil or if you’re using butter, I would say use about as much as you would typically spread on toast.
  8. Spread it around the pan with your wooden spoon.
  9. Pour your egg mixture into the pan.
  10. LET IT SIT FOR ABOUT 30 SECONDS.
  11. Then take your wooden spoon and make small circles. You don’t want the egg to cook in one solid circle, you’re trying to make curds by breaking them up.
  12. You will know your eggs are done when there are no longer any sort of mucus-y looking parts to it. If you are like my boyfriend and you can’t be bothered to pay attention to what that means, I would say about two minutes.
  13. Serve immediately

WANT TO MAKE BREAKFAST TACOS?

*I am in no way claiming that this is the way to make authentic tacos. It is definitely not!!*

You’re going to need any tortillas of your choice. They don’t even have to be taco-sized, you could also make this a breakfast burrito or roll-up. You’ll need cheddar cheese and hot sauce. Assuming you just made the scrambled eggs, take a clean frying pan and put it on the burner at low heat. Put your tortilla in the pan. While your tortilla heats up, sprinkle it with cheddar cheese. Wait for it to melt. If you’re feeling fancy, this is when you can add things like tomatoes, onions, jalapeños, beans, meat, etc… Then dump your scrambled eggs on top and let them get a little warmer (they likely will have cooled). Remove taco from frying pan, top with hot sauce!

HOW TO FRY AN EGG (THIS IS THE LAST ONE I PROMISE)

You’ll need an egg, a frying pan, a spatula and some sort of fat like olive oil or butter.

  1. Put your frying pan on a stove burner at high heat. Let it get hot. You’ll know it’s hot (DON’T TOUCH IT) when you hold your hand over it, and you can feel the heat.
  2. Put about a tablespoon of olive oil or butter into the pan. Can’t be bothered to measure? Cut off a big hunk of butter or make a small pool olive oil. Let the butter melt (or just leave the olive oil alone in the pan).
  3. This part is the trickiest part IMO. You need to crack the egg and put it in the pan. The simplest way to do this is to crack the egg against the pan and dump in its contents. If you are afraid of getting burned or of leaving shell in there by mistake, get a small bowl and crack the egg into there instead. Then dump the egg from the bowl into the frying pan.
  4. Yes, the oil/butter will make scary noises while it cooks the egg. Get over it tbh.
  5. You will know when one side is done because the outer edges of the egg will start to brown and turn crispy.
  6. Take your spatula and slide it under the egg. You are going to flip the egg. Yes, you can do this. There is no way to fuck it up other than to chuck the egg on the floor. Focus!! Flip the egg over so the other side can cook!!!
  7. Wow you did it.
  8. Let it sit there are like….2 to 2 1/2 minutes. Do a little longer (3 min) for a firmer yolk.
  9. TURN THE HEAT OFF.
  10. Take your spatula and take the egg out of the pan!!!! Now you can add this fried egg to a piece of toast, bowl of pasta, rice or something!!!

I don’t really have another recipe for you with this. My only advice, is that everything tastes better with a fried egg on it. Try it on pasta, pizza, a grain bowl, on some fried rice, avocado toast… honestly the sky is the limit with this one. My favorite way to eat a fried egg rn is between two halves of an english muffin with some cheddar cheese and hot sauce mmmmmmm.

ANYWAY

If you have any questions, feel free to ask me. If you want to learn how to make other basic things, LMK. I can also teach you how to make harder things. Idk. I’m here!! Caring never stops! And that is okay. We can do this together.

Lately Snack Break: St. End

“Snack Break” is Lately’s interview series where we chat with people we think are interesting, for about as long as it takes you to finish your afternoon snack. Our second in the series is with St. End founder and friend of Lately, Erin Gabriel….who for the longest time, I thought was named Erin Gabe.

Erin is an internet cool girl with a natural eye for design that would make Alexa Chung blush.

The florist by-day, jewelry designer by-night is the sole force behind the accessory brand St. End, named for the latter half of your childhood “BEST FRIEND” necklace.

Whether you’re looking to rock a cow-print hair barrette, give your kid sister a beaded bracelet that says “Paul Rudd” or want to elevate your outfit with a pair of glow in the dark flower earrings, Gab(ri)e(l) is your girl.

Her brand St. End is full of bold colors, dreamy shapes and original ideas that turn your ears, wrists, and hair, into a full-on party.

You just always seem to know what looks good. Where do you think that comes from? Do you have any inspirations?

EG: First of all, thank you! I would accredit my Aquarius-ness for always having my finger on the pulse of any new style trends; it’s important for me to stay on top of the curve, or try at least. 

I also think growing up with a mother that was constantly repainting, redecorating, and tweaking the style of our home played a huge role in how attuned I am to design. She and I have always been keen on DIY projects for home decor and fashion, so I think that translates into my inspiration for starting St. End. 

So your DIY spirit is what drew you to making jewelry?

EG: I have been making my own jewelry since I was little and got my first pair of jewelry pliers and a tackle box full of beads. In high school when I couldn’t find accessories that were to my liking, I would buy cheap costume jewelry from Forever21 and reconstruct [them] to add charms or rhinestones or beads, until I had a piece of jewelry that was totally unique to me.

I used to make bracelets out of zippers and vintage beads my Grandma gifted me and sold them at art fairs. I guess I’ve always been a jewelry entrepreneur lol.

You’re so creative! You’ve made earrings in the shape of gummy worms, tombstones, bananas, mushrooms and butterfly wings! Where do you get your ideas from?

EG: When I’m designing pieces, I start by sketching ideas for shapes if I plan on working with polymer clay. This then leads to a big trial and error process where I see what color and shape combinations I like. I also use Pinterest and IG for inspiration. 

You also give your pieces these insanely good pun-based names. Where do those come from?

EG: I keep a running list of names I like or think are clever and usually end up texting my friends to see what they like best. Niche references are a big part of the St. End brand.

Your Halloween collection just dropped and it was amazing. What’s next for St. End?

EG: I really hope to get into designing molds for custom metal jewelry. I would love to have custom molds cast into finer materials like sterling silver or 14K gold.

Five years from now, I just hope I’m still designing and creating pieces that are fun and I want to wear! That’s really why I started St. End- to create jewelry that I want! I just got lucky that other people want to wear it, too.

If you could make jewelry for any celeb, who would it be? 

EG: Immediately I thought of Phoebe Bridgers since I recently made a pair of ghost earrings inspired by her Stranger in the Alps album artwork. I think I would cry if she wore a pair of my ghost earrings.

Oh, also AOC. I can picture her wearing a pair of my tiny gold hoops. I think it would be very on brand for her. I just want people to feel cool when they wear my stuff and to know that it was created with so so much love.

Honestly, that’s my favorite part of your brand. You can tell a lot of thought and care went in to every piece. It feels like you’re wearing a little piece of art. For Lately readers who haven’t shopped St. End yet, what are the essential pieces?

EG: Crushed Little Stars, Uptown Pearl, Daisy Dukes, More Cowbell, and a custom Stretchy Bracelet to finish off the look.

You can follow St. End on Instagram at: @st.end_

Saturday Link Pack

Hello!

Happy weekend! I am currently sitting on my couch, next to my boyfriend, who is depressed that I have announced that I want lip injections.

I ran an Instagram poll this week asking you all what you’d like to see more of on Lately, and many of you (the 5 people who responded) answered roundups and recipes. So on this grey LA October day, I am posting a roundup of just….shit from the internet? And a recipe or two.

Enjoy

Speaking of D*n, he LOVED this brown-butter salmon with lemon and Harissa recipe that I made the other week. It’s an Alison Roman dish and was fairly easy to make.

I have been dreaming of these press-ons from Color Camp. The orange is fall AF. If you’ve never ordered from CC, they send you a try on kit before your order ships so you can give them the exact size of your nails. The result is press-ons that actually fit and look natural. This autumn floral design is super cute too.

This is THE BEST smelling & looking candle.

Repeller (formerly Man Repeller) shut down this week, right after a relaunch that held the promise of inclusivity and would have opened the door to much-needed conversations in the fashion/beauty/lifestyle digital space. If you want details on the close, you can read about it here. If you want some insider gossip on the sitch….click here.

I’ve been eyeing these bike shorts (yes bike shorts are still a core part of my wardrobe) from Aerie. The v-seam looks ultra-flattering. Plus, they’re on sale right now for $25. They also come in legging form.

I just started using these much-hyped Japanese beauty skin cloths in the shower. They exfoliate like a mofo. 10/10 recommend.

I’ve been trying to up my fermented foods/probiotics intake, because I have severely screwed up my gut health during quarantine. I’ve been really enjoying drives to Erewhon for Kombucha Kat (and I am a person who typically doesn’t like kombucha but this stuff is really tasty). I’ve also started drinking this blackberry apple cider vinegar tea in the mornings.

You STILL need to wear SPF in the fall/winter!! Even when it’s not sunny out. Even indoors! They discontinued making my favorite one from Purito : ( right as I am squeezing out of the last drops from my bottle! I might try EltaMD next, or Solid & Striped.

Maybe I’ll wear this dress to Thanksgiving. I know it’s not even Halloween yet, but I have been dreaming of eating stuffing.

Somebody buy me these earrings.

Halloween is in 1 week! My grandmother sent me some Halloween/fall cookie cutters and I put them to good use. She even sent me a card with the sugar cookie recipe she has been making my entire life.

Albertson’s was out of purple and orange icing. Peep the pilgrim hats I tried to turn into a spooky witches hat and a fall hat for gardening.

Anyway, we saw a rat on the balcony yesterday. Tell me again why we left the valley?

xoxoxo

Lily

M*ney

I am currently saving money for a pair of shoes that don’t actually exist.

I know that I want new shoes. I mean, I always want new shoes. But after a recent closet purge at Buffalo Exchange where I made $160 selling what felt like $1,000 worth of goods, I realized I had sold a lot of my nicer pieces, including fancy shoes that I currently have no business wearing (because where the hell do I even go?), but will want to replace to wear later.

I pulled open tabs on Staud, Suzanne Rae, Maryam Nassir Zadeh, Brother Vellies, etc… and quickly realized — 1. Sh*t, I am broke, and 2. Would it feel as good to instantly replace my shoes (and go into even MORE debt) than it would to save up for a pair I actually have my eye on?

Also 3….. or do I want a purse??

So, they’re more metaphorical “shoes” than anything.

One of the few reasons I am so glad to live in 2020 (including being on the same plane of existence as Harry Styles) is that there is an app for everything. I’ll preface this by saying, THIS IS NOT AN AD. I have in no way been paid to endorse anything. I just really love the Digit app.

You can make this money app do whatever you want (besides give you more money lol). Right now, I have it scheduled to pull a little money (and I mean truly a tiny bit) from my checking account for a “rainy day fund,” and a little bit of money that I use to pay my credit card bill with.

So when I realized I might want new shoes/a new purse/diamond earrings/the magic potion that will make Harry Styles fall in love with me, I set up a new “Savings Goal,” as the app calls it.

I labeled it “NEW SHOES!!!” Because I am someone who enjoys caps and exclamation points to make life more exciting. I picked a random number to save up to that would afford me dream shoes, and in a time frame that would turn my little nest egg into a present for New Years (because 2021 HAS to be better than 2020. Especially if I start it by wearing new shoes.)

The app then alerted me that it would need to save between $5 – $15 every day, depending on what’s in my checking account.

My lizard brain thought…$5 to $15?? That’s like…my daily Starbucks coffee and a bagel! NO! But then my humanoid brain whispered into my hippocampus, “I dare you to do it, bitch.”

Yes, this post is disgusting and steeped in privilege. I am a woman who can afford to save money for something she doesn’t actually need. Giving up a daily dose of Starbucks is not a hardship.

What I have learned about myself since March 2020, when everything shut down and changed, is that I am a person who spends money to feel better. During the pandemic, it has reached a fever pitch (mom I know you are reading this and freaking out. Please take a breath and calm down.) I know, through communicating with friends, that other people are going through a similar thing. But it still feels incredibly shameful and isolating.

It feels good to buy goods that support small business, because everyone is floundering. But then I feel like I am floundering (mental health wise) and I want to support myself through self care. Then I realize that I am a piece of sh*t because the world around me is crumbling and I need to donate to bail funds and free food fridges and NOT buy that Amazon potato peeler because I should be at a place in my life where I am perfectly fine just peeling all my fruit and potatoes and things with a knife, and if I wanted to practice good self care I would just go paint my nails or something. Which makes me think about how I want new nail polish and then the cycle starts again.

So I have been meditating on it.

I may not actually buy “shoes” or a “purse” or anything at all.

I would like to think I am trying to break this money cyclone I have created for myself, and be more mindful when it comes to WHY I am making purchases, and stop that bottomless hole feeling. Do I feel anxious right now? Am I buying new bedsheets because I am depressed or because I can’t get that hot sauce stain out? Will I still want this item in 2 weeks? Remember the glitter chair quarantine purchase????

By acknowledging that I am saving money for a goal, I am attempting to have less of a knee-jerk response to self-soothe by entering my secret code on any website that takes Shopify.

That includes unsubscribing from sites I like that offer me daily deals and my compulsory “I left the house coffee” (which NGL, is going to be super hard because it has become a ritual for me to go on a walk to get that delicious, delicious iced bean water).

I will be real with you my beautiful readers, who I hope don’t think I am now scum on the bottom of a Jimmy Choo… I do still want shoes. And I will probably allow myself one coffee outing a week. But I have made this blog post in an attempt to be accountable? In an attempt to be transparent?

Both, I guess.

I just hope someone out there relates to this/doesn’t tell me to burn in hell for behaving irresponsibly with my money.

Please don’t punch me in the face if you see me with an iced latte on the street.

X

LL

Have a Cozy-Making Sunday

I am writing this to you from my kitchen table, where I have a lovely view of an aluminum butter wrapper that has flown onto my balcony and out of someone’s trash. Either that or my upstairs neighbors are dumping their garbage out of their window.

I have yet to learn to love life on the east side.

ANYWAY.

I have a face mask on, I’m wearing my gnocchi Uggs, and I’m sipping some re-heated coffee. To add to the major relaxation vibes, Dan has football on (which is serving as my background noise ASMR for the day) and I have lit every single candle in our apartment. It is the late-teens of October and I am extremely dedicated to the spirit of Sunday cozy-making.

While it still may not be cold enough in LA to wear a sweater and I will probably have to say R.I.P. to any plans I had to go to a pumpkin patch this year, here are some things on the internet that are making me feel especially cozy today:

In the spirit of becoming my own favorite Midwestern aunt, it is my duty to inform all of you that this is the last day of Bath & Body Works buy 1, get 1 3-wick candle sale.

This weekend I listened to the Amelia Diamond episode of Gee Thanks, Just Bought It, and it was like spending time with an old friend. Diamond left Man Repeller (now called, Repeller) in 2018 and I have missed her voice/sense of humor ever since.

As soon as I take a leisurely solo trip to the grocery store to buy ingredients, I’ll be baking this apple cider doughnut cake.

Independent book stores really need your help right now. Even if you don’t have time to read (or like to), you definitely have friends and family who do. Consider buying a book, tote bag, or cool crewneck sweater to keep these places open. Here are a few independent book stores that I love: Unabridged Bookstore (Chicago), Women & Children First (Chicago), Skylight Books (Los Angeles), City Lights Bookstore (San Francisco), McNally Jackson (New York).

I got into my friend’s car after months of not seeing her and one of the first things she said to me was “you smell SO good.” I just started wearing this perfume.

I used to hate tomatoes and now I am obsessed with bursting them with olive oil and a little garlic to make pasta sauce. Will probably make some variation of this for dinner this week.

Have you been doing yoga at home? I’ve been really into SarahBethYoga’s videos. Sometimes I take a 15 minute break from work to do this one. I’ve also been looking for a new yoga mat. Anyone have any recs?

Just copped this plaid jacket from Minnesota/North Dakota brand Kittsona. I’m going to have to wait a little until the temps drop to wear it, but when I do I’d love to pair it with something like cozy like this. Mommy blogger fall is the vibe.

Speaking of mommy blogger fall, every year I consider buying this Everlane glove boot. TC if you’re reading this, I need you to peer pressure me into it!!! NO RAGRETS

Hope you’re somewhere cozy, enjoying Great British Baking Show, and drinking mugs of tea.

Love

LL

Rating Sh*t I Bought Because of TikTok

If you think there aren’t 27 year old women on this app, you’re probably on the wrong side of TikTok. This video app (which has completely ruined taken over my life) is influencing the crap out of me to buy things.

There are so many makeup artists touting must-have setting sprays, hair stylists with holy grail conditioners and just cool/smart people who have put me on to products that “actually work.”

But do they?????

Because I am a complete and total sucker, I have bought some of these things. Here’s what is actually good:

The Revlon Salon One-Step Hair Dryer & Volumizer

I bought this at Ulta after a bunch of women that I follow on TikTok used it to give themselves DryBar-worthy blowouts.

Full disclosure, I am a DryBar ADDICT. I used to go every other week because it was in my building at work. Shoutout Burbank. I fully believe that if I were to have even the faintest whiff of a DryBar candle right now, it would give me a full body orgasm.

But not only do I miss DryBar, my frizzy little head misses it too. My hair has not been sleek or bouncy in the months? years? That we have been here.

I am fairly okay using hot tools. I have been flat ironing my own hair since I was 13 (humblebrag).

This hair-drying round brush isn’t difficult to use, but it is definitely bulky. I had to section my hair into smaller portions than normal to get the strands as sleek as I wanted to because I just couldn’t get in there, on account of how big the brush is.

I did love how quickly it dried my hair, even when it was wet-wet. It’s a great tool for creating sleek/flipped ends. I DON’T love that I can’t get as close as I want to to my roots, like I typically would be able to with a flat iron.

It gave me lots of volume. I had to go back over the top with my flat iron 😦

8/10 — Excellent hair tool. Probably easier to use if you have thin to medium hair and aren’t a total chia pet like me.

Essence Lash Princess Mascara

This mascara was $5 at CVS and worth every penny. That’s 500 pennies so…that means a lot. This mascara will give you black-blash lashes with lots of buildable volume and length. HOWEVER!!! due to the heaviness of this mascara, it won’t hold a curl no matter how many times you attack your lashes with a curling wand.

7/10 — a great drugstore mascara, especially if you have naturally curly lashes.

The Ordinary Azelaic Acid

This product from The Ordinary is all the rage on Skincare-Tok. Normally, I am slightly afraid of this brand because I have no fucking clue what anything does or is for. BUT!!! After seeing too many TikToks where teens AND adults used this acid to help fade acne scars, I knew I needed to try it out.

IT. WORKS.

10/10

Actually holy grail for me??? I have scarring, largely from my dermatillomania (chronic skin picking!), and after only a week of using this, my marks have faded dramatically. Plus, it was $7 at Ulta. THANKS TIKTOK!

NYX Powder Puff Lippie

1000000/10. It’s like dream matte mousse but for your LIPS!! And in so many gorgeous shades. It’s budge-proof, it’s light, it’s pigmented, it smells good….it’s perfect. AND IT IS CHEAP!! If you wear lipstick, get it.

ART

There are some pretty amazing artists/designers/creators on TikTok. These are some of the ones I’ve made purchases from. I know these aren’t like….products I can give feedback on exactly, other than to say they were all so pretty and I love them/supporting small business!

All 10/10!!

Things in My Los Angeles Apartment That Just Make Sense

We’re in our new space! I can’t believe I finally left the valley! And that all the people who used to make fun of me for living there have had to move back to Pennsylvania/central Illinois to live with their parents!

Here are some bright spots about our new place:

This candelabra set my boyfriend hates but I think is really cool

He told me they remind him of when Delia Deetz decorates the house with really modern furniture in Beetlejuice. That may have been meant as an insult, but Delia Deetz manically decorating things might just be my overall vibe. Anyway, I love their cool squiggly shape and brassy color. It was actually difficult to find candlesticks that would fit into these mASSIVE holes, but I finally did.

I got both from Urban online: candle holder, candle sticks

A rolling cart

I have already mentioned this rolling cart a few times, but I am obsessed with it. My new kitchen is teeny tiny and I need all the storage space I can get. You can’t really tell in this photo but I am currently using my salad bowl as a fruit bowl. Chic!

If you’re straining your eyes to read what the art above my cart says, don’t. It says “Orange you glad you’re still here despite it all.” It feels appropriate because fruit belongs in the kitchen and because this is an old-ass Los Feliz apartment building, it has had a LOT of issues! Even before we started officially living in it! Also the frame is not off center, you’re just crooked.

Also Tori if you’re reading this, my Always Pan in sage green just shipped.

A lot of plants

Don’t let this photo fool you. My new apartment is basically a little cave. This is one of the ONLY sunny spots for plants. Luckily, these plants aren’t like….sun-obsessed (plant community please don’t come for me if I am wrong).

I am planning on going to my fave plant store in the valley to get some plants for the rest of the apartment that thrive in low-light.

A haphazardly organized bar cart

I really want to make this look cute and it is kind of looking like a disaster! Please HELP! I think I want to put a plant on it? Again, it will need to be something that thrives in lower light. Because of course it does.

However, I do love that this cart solved a lot of my storage issues and that it is cute, even if it is disorganized. Yes, I drink Casamigos AND Trader Joe’s rum. Yes, we exist.

A Larry David pillow

It’s Dan’s. Peep the purple rug below!!

My little bedroom reading nook

After much back-and-forth with my interior designer a.k.a. my friend Erin who has a great eye for design and gave me advice for free, we decided to put this little bench-moment under my bedroom window to make it look purposeful.

You might think this iced coffee and book placement was just for the photo, but I was actually curled up reading before this.!

Also, if anyone has some goo-gone for the leftover sticker bits on my mirror that they could bring me, it would be much appreciated.

A shower curtain that looks like a lot of nipples

When I purchased this curtain online I thought, how sweet! It will add some texture and I love the rosy color. Then I set it up and thought hmmm….looks like nipples. It is definitely more flesh-toned in person, but I still like it a lot. I got it from Amazon, where I also got my cute little peach bath mat. I wanted Urban Outfitters but at “fell off a truck” prices.

bath mat, shower curtain

My shelfie

Honestly, I wanted to show off what skincare I’ve been using. Aside from the mask-ne I’ve been dealing with (one of the many pleasures of the pandemic), my skin has been looking and feeling pretty good. I am especially obsessed with the Rio Viera-Newton-approved double cleansing duo with my Then I Met You Living Cleansing Balm and the Dr. Loretta Gentle Hydrating Cleanser.

Also, I started using Megababe on my pits and now I believe the hype and my armpits smell like flowers. 10/10 recommend.

Anyway, I have more apartment than this. I just can’t show it to you because it’s Dan’s office not fully decorated yet.

I have one very large wall in the bedroom that I am considering hanging some shelves on. Also we might get a new coffee table. HMU with some ideas. You know where to find me.

I’m an east side girl now.

xo

L

Saying Sorry

Everything is different this year, including my apologies. Yom Kippur begins this weekend and I have been taking stock of what doesn’t sit right with me. Last year, I sought to forgive myself for the way I was mistreating me. This year (in my eyes) is less about the push and pull of asking for forgiveness and granting it. It’s about apologizing and expecting no forgiveness at all.

First and foremost, I would like to apologize to Breonna Taylor. An entire country — YOUR country — failed you. I am so deeply sorry that you have continually been denied justice and for the meme-ification of your murder and your life. You are more than a hashtag and the products and magazine covers made to capitalize off of your existence as a Black woman. The treatment of your memory is abhorrent. “Sorry” could never be enough. What has been done to you is unforgivable. All I can offer is my words and my actions. Your life mattered.

I deeply hate and am disgusted by the treatment of the Black community by police in the United States. I am naming Breonna, but there have been many other Black people — who all matter — who still have not received justice. I am dedicating 5781 (the Jewish new year) to education and action.

I am sorry to all the kids who were excited about their first year of kindergarten, middle school, high school and college. I am sorry to everyone entering their last year of those things. It’s such a shitty time to begin or to end anything. I am so sorry you were robbed of your excitement and had to adapt to this weird non-way of living life. It sucks so much.

If you were planning to get married this year or go on your honeymoon or had a big family trip planned, I’m sorry you had to hold off. This isn’t our year, is it?

I am really sorry to anyone who got sick with coronavirus. The people in charge grossly mishandled all of it. I have come to accept that our country could have done so many more things right and chose not to. I am so sorry to anyone who had to suffer or is currently suffering because they couldn’t/can’t get the medical care that they need. It’s embarrassing on so many levels.

I am sorry to the summer I thought I was going to have. I am sorry to my friends who I haven’t seen in months. Please know that I miss you every single day. I am sorry to Chicago, to Andrew, to my aunt and my uncle. My parents. My grandma. Mary. I apologize to the nights out I missed. The restaurants that closed that I wanted to try. To my therapist for calling her 18000000 times. To my eyes for only ever taking in my computer screen. To California for its fires. For things that aren’t my fault and for everything that is. To Chelsea, to Tori, to Julia to Amanda. To Mijal. To Dan.

I read something somewhere once about some years being the ones where you plant the seeds and the next years being the ones where you watch it all grow. I am really hoping to see something good bloom eventually.

Love you all

LL

Home Goods & Home Okays

Hello it’s me, your favorite anthropomorphic hot Cheeto, here to talk to you about decorating.

I am currently in the process of moving and while I’m not totally all moved in yet, I have been decorating/planning how to decorate/crying/dreaming about how I would decorate if I had more money.

I am a Cancer sun, Cancer rising, so I am a homebody.

I like my apartment to be a place where I can rest and recharge. I want all of it to be as comfortable as possible, with lots of textures and colors and plants and candles. I want to feel cozy and like I could sit and eat a snack in virtually every square inch!

I also really like knick knacks.

Rooms that look like this make me feel cozy:

View this post on Instagram

Felt cute, might archive later 😊

A post shared by ANDREA BURKE (@asburke) on

and this

and this

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🌀 home stuff 🌀

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However, I am someone who frequently spills iced coffee/red wine on to my white bed sheets. I am afraid to hammer nails into my walls or hooks into the ceiling because I will most certainly fuck it up and ,,,,,,asbestos. My new kitchen is itty bitty. I’m going to be living with my boyfriend. My budget is like $5.

HERE IS HOW I AM MAKING IT WORK, URBAN OUTFITTERS HOME SECTION BE DAMNED!!!

Get a statement piece

I can’t afford hundreds of those cool neon bendy candles I keep seeing on Instagram. All I have are my own shitty Target ones. So I got this purple rug after reading about it on The Strategist. Yes, it’s bright AF but it’s going to add a much needed pop of color to the rest of the room which I am decorating with a grey couch, a white TV stand and a white bookshelf.

This way, when people enter my apartment they won’t be like “wow she doesn’t even have cool candles” they’ll be like “WOW THAT IS A PURPLE ASS RUG.”

Bookshelves are multi-purpose

Did I arrange my boyfriend’s copies of David Sedaris books by color? That’s a secret I’ll never tell. But I WILL tell you that I am using our new Ikea bookshelf as a spot to display artwork from my friends, cards I have been sent in an effort to save the USPS, plants and various little bits and bobs. However, if I had an Urban Outfitters home budget, you’d better believe I’d be getting one of these!

This may seem like a duh to everyone BUT I am happy to find an alternative to wall shelves. Don’t tell me they’re easy to just nail in. I’m sure they are. You’re more than welcome to come over and do that for me!

Here’s what is saving my little kitchen

My new kitchen is small.

Like New York apartment small.

Like I can reach into the refrigerator and pull something out of the oven while also passing someone at the table something from inside a cupboard, SMALL.

As you can imagine, there is also virtually no storage.

So as a woman with a lot of cookware (and a lot of wine) I invested in a bar cart and a rolling kitchen rack. Now I have room on my shelves for food instead of wine glasses, won’t have to store my alcohol like I live in a college dorm and have two really cute spaces that I can mix/match/decorate as I please. I’ll provide photos later. Promise.

Let the light in

Excluding the living room, the apartment tends to be on the darker side due to the windows and where they are placed. To make the bedroom feel light and airy, I went to Home Goods (shoutout title of this post) and purchased the biggest round mirror I could find and any light/natural wood frames. The goal is to make the room feel bigger, brighter, lighter and warmer. That means I am going to be decorating it with mirrors, replacing dark wood frames with light ones and furnishing the space with light fabrics but with cool textures.

My duvet cover (which is a dupe for an expensive Urban Outfitters one) is white, but features a cool textured fringe-y bottom. I am currently searching for the perfect uniquely-shaped pillow (would love one like this) and I have been looking at headboard alternatives (because I never found one that I liked) and am giving strong consideration to a few macramé hangings including: this one and this one.

Randomly I own these woven baskets that I am going to use to store extra blankets in, so those will go in the room as well. Of course, there will also be plants just like… everywhere.

The place IS coming together. Slowly but surely. You don’t have to take my word for it but eventually photos will do it justice! Thank you to everyone who has given me furniture as they have moved away or just Mari Kondo-ed their space. It’s all bringing me joy.

If you feel like sending me a house warming gift, I’d love candlesticks. Or a bottle of wine.

loving u

LL

The Year That Wasn’t

Once upon a time, there was a year that didn’t exist.

On December 31, people everywhere counted down “3…2…1” and at the stroke of midnight, everything disappeared.

Or that’s how it feels anyway when I think about how 2020 has gone. Yes, we had a January and February and even a week or two of March, but where has the rest of the time gone?

I’d like to think it hasn’t all been wasted. The creative, food, fashion, and beauty communities have demanded accountability from their people in power, and some even got it. The Black Lives Matter protests have continued, because Black lives matter and because everyone should be protesting the horrific treatment (whether it makes headlines or not) of women, men and non-binary people in the Black community. Everyone should be anti-racist. We have been working on defunding the police. These things happened this year. These things matter.

The fact that we all abandoned our sourdough starters does not.

However, I have been thinking about all the things I wanted to do and thought I was going to do this year, and now can’t.

So here’s my list:

Visit Australia

I was thinking Melbourne. The universe was thinking Coronavirus.

Have my friends over to my apartment for a dinner party

In March, I moved to a new apartment. COVID hit exactly two weeks later. During that time, exactly 3 friends saw my new place. Now I am moving into ANOTHER apartment across town. Kind of sad that no one was ever able to come here and that I was never able to have a house warming!! But I will treasure the Thai food and movies I watched with Chelsea and Julia and that one time I cooked eggplant and steak with Mijal. Also… how close I currently am to a Sephora.

Chicago Summer

There’s nothing quite like summertime Chi. The city comes alive. Everyone is showing off their pasty white winter legs on sunny patios, the lake is a sparkling Sapphire, you can drink in the middle of street and eat Harold’s chicken if you spend too much money at Taste of Chicago. It’s the best. I wanted to go this year. Oh well!

Get a new tattoo

I have about 7 different ideas, only two of which I can remember at any given time. Also, my tattoo shop is closed.

Guide my little cousin through her first year of college

My poor little cousin. She is a freshman this year, and at my alma mater. I was so excited to be “the cool cousin” and give her pro-tips about dorms, where to go out, where to eat, etc… But as excited as I was, it’s definitely 10000 times worse for her.

Go out with friends

I would pay infinity dollars to safely be out at a bar with my friends on a Friday night, standing in a little circle of my ladies. I want to be definitely tipsy, shouting to be heard over whatever bar music. I am picturing The Lincoln. My next cocktail is something fruity. I’m wearing block heels and a leather jacket. My friend Katie is asking me to come stand outside with her while she smokes a cigarette. I will take an Uber home before my friends ask to go to the next bar. Life is good.

Try new restaurants

This is the only thing I have still done under Q. While I am not able to take in the ambiance of new establishments, I have still been able to try their food via the comfort of my bed. I now need to buy new sheets as these have all been stained.

Visit New York

It’s on my list every year to go. I don’t know why I want to do it. I hate New York.

Go to at least one hotel

I did plan on staying in a hotel this year. I still can. But with enormous trepidation!!! Everything gives me anxiety!!! Including towels folded like swans and bathtub plugs swimming with other people’s ickies!!!

Learn ASL and take an ASL class

I guess I could still take a class online?

Try on clothing in a shop

I DID plan on trying clothes on in a dressing room at some point in 2020. Basically my style has just become oversized tees and bike shorts because I don’t want to go through the hassle of bringing shit home, trying it on and then going alllll the way back to return what doesn’t fit.

ANYWAY, I have stopped blaming it totally on people who won’t stay home to flatten the curve and now blame it mostly on our government’s total lack of sense/preparation/caring.

I mean if you’re still going to crowded bars and big parties and stuff, f*ck you.

Always exhausted & always yours

L

Why I’m Starting Again

Sometimes it feels so singularly embarrassing to exist. If you’re anything like me — which I hope you aren’t — it’s exhausting. Remembering anything, making a small (or large) mistake, saying hello to a stranger and garbling the words, committing, realizing what you’ve committed to, comparing yourself to Instagrams, living in America amidst a global pandemic, living in Trump’s America (idk why that feels worse than living in a global pandemic, but it does), being invited to a Zoom call and then immediately trying to figure out how to get out of it, not finishing a craft (OR A WRITING PROJECT) that you started, surviving inside a burping, sneezing, digesting, hairy human body, can be soul crushing.

So that’s why I’m here. I guess.

To show myself (and you, if you’re reading this) that yeah, it’s embarrassing to live, but life does go on. There is a large sliding scale of discomfort and sometimes you’re at “getting your ears pierced” and sometimes you’re at “full pelvic exam.”

Right now, I’d like to think I’m at “rigorous cheek swab.”

So I’m writing again.

I do believe this is the ….third? fourth? millionth time? Maybe? That I’ve said HIIIIIIIIII I’M BACK!!!! And let me tell you, it feels embarrassing! But also, really nice to have a place to write. Because I have a lot of things to say and sometimes you read them and that’s good. I hope it makes the both of us feel less alone.

Originally I was going to make this post a list. But that felt too impersonal. Come back for pasta recipes, pictures of my new apartment (I got a purple rug), good TikToks, tru sad girl hours, TV recommendations, astrology, weird shit I’ve found on Amazon and beauty/skincare ideas.

love u

L

All The Movies I’ve Watched During Quarantine, Ranked

My boyfriend Dan (with who I am currently quarantining), is a man of many hobbies. When he’s not watching sports/sports gambling/blogging about live theatre/singing along to show tunes/playing online trivia/doing magician stuff/asking me to make him a tuna sandwich/refusing to buy me expensive jewelry, he’s typically watching a movie.

Sometimes, when I’m not on my 47th rewatch of Grey’s Anatomy, I’ll watch one with him.

And so that is how during quarantine we have watched a shit ton of films. Some of them I had never seen, some he had never seen and not all of them were enjoyable! I decided to rank them for my own amusement and your (hopefully) enjoyment.

All my digital media training is telling me to rank them worst to best to build anticipation, but those lists always suck because who cares about what’s good? I’m starting with #1. Save the worst for last! It’s more exciting that way!

The Goodbye Girl

This is my favorite movie we’ve seen so far. It’s a very cute rom-com and I never realized how appealing young Richard Dreyfuss is. I even Googled if he’s Jewish (aka crush-worthy/HE IS). 10/10. Definitely watch this if you are a complicated woman who wants to feel all squooshy inside or if you’re a schlubby actor-type with a white knight complex. You’ll feel seen.

My Cousin Vinny

Worth it for Marisa Tomei’s outfits, alone! Also a great movie to watch if you feel like you can’t get enough Joe Pesci, which is how I feel 90% of the time. Also I saw him when I was on a walk the other day in Toluca Lake. He wasn’t wearing a mask. Oh, Joe!

Bonus points if you recognize that one of the leads is Rachel Green’s ex from Friends!

Scream

I know! I’d never seen Scream before! I finally get why everyone has the major horn for that Dad from Riverdale. He was crazy and hot. Also, petition to revive Matthew Lillard’s career from its Ghostface grave.

Charade

It’s not like I have a Kate Spade tea cup with an Audrey Hepburn quote on it or anything (not that there’s anything wrong with that) but I think Hepburn is FABULOUS in this movie and that Cary Grant is pretty darn cute. Was he gay IRL? Is that an old Hollywood rumor? I don’t care! Those two have chemistry for days.

A great movie to watch when you’ve had enough of your boyfriend, have your period and just want some wine and chocolate.

To Catch A Thief

Made me want to go to the French Riviera/ wear a pretty dress/ drink a sazerac sling. These are top marks from me, people.

First Wives Club

I’ve seen this movie 100 times but Dan had never seen it. It’s a classic. Bette Midler, Diane Keaton, Goldie Hawn, SJP AND Maggie Smith?? Your fave movie could NEVER.

Interview With A Vampire

This felt like a Twilight prequel? Almost? Kirsten Dunst gave me major Renesmée vibes. Plus, one thing I have discovered during quarantine is that I think I fucking LOVE Tom Cruise. I mean, I hate him (#TeamNicole) but he’s so good at acting!!! Damn!!

Romancing The Stone

Another actor whose movies I’ve learned I have a soft spot for is Michael Douglas. This movie had big Indiana Jones energy but I wish the female lead had been Goldie Hawn or someone like that. I’d love to see who was on the short list for casting. Good movie to watch with a pizza!

Dirty Harry

We watched this movie because I have been feeling homesick for San Francisco and my family and I knew it had some cool shorts of North Beach. After watching this I realized how good my dad’s Clint Eastwood impression actually is.

American Graffiti

This movie had me feeling nostalgic for something that doesn’t and maybe never existed! I loved it!

Donnie Brasco

I fucking love movies about the mob.

Coco

Okay, fuck this movie for making me cry but FUCK! This movie!!!!! So fun and also sweet!!!

Election

Dan was SHOCKED that I had never seen this film. I enjoyed it but I think it kind of made me hate Matthew Broderick. Baby Reese was incredible though.

The Princess and the Frog

Dan had never seen this one and I’m really glad he liked it because I think it’s one of my favorite Disney movies.

Honeyboy

This movie was very sad and then I spent a really long time Googling Shia LaBeouf!

Fatal Attraction

I knew the term “bunny boiler” came from this movie. Dan says my dad made that term up. Glenn Close is national treasure.

Heaven Can Wait

CLASSIC movie about someone dying when they shouldn’t have and the people who run heaven having to put their soul into someone else’s body. CLASSIC!

Basic Instinct

We watched it to see Sharon Stone. Again, some really nice shots of San Francisco. I thought it was kind of dumb but thinking about it now I guess it was more dumb-fun. Also how does she look so elegant in a white turtleneck and why can’t I pull that off!?

Waiting for Guffman

Your typical silly Christopher Guest comedy. Good cast. Great movie to half-pay attention to.

Anna and The Apocalypse

This movie was weird AF, especially because I didn’t know it was a musical. It’s about a Christmastime zombie apocalypse in England? Ireland???? It’s cute and predictable but still a good watch, especially because real life feels sort of like a zombie apocalypse rn anyway.

Scream 2

Not as good as the first one but still kind of fun. Not realistic that Buffy would die but ok.

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

The best Indiana Jones movie.

Punch Drunk Love

Probably the only Paul Thomas Anderson film I like. Don’t take my film school diploma away!!! It’s a time Adam Sandler was serious in a film and it worked!

Death On The Nile

Better than Murder on the Orient Express!

All the rest of the Indian Jones movies

I know, it’s a crime I’d never seen these. They were fine.

A Few Good Men

Tom Cruise is fun! Demi Moore is not fun but I like her! This movie is ok.

Shampoo

My dad said we should watch this one. It was aight. Goldie Hawn wore some cool outfits.

National Treasure

Kind of fun but also I didn’t really care. Sorry to Dan who LOVES this movie.

Monsters University

Nothing special but easy to watch especially after you’ve had a lot of margaritas and just cried your eyes out to Coco.

Tangled

Am I the only person who thinks this movie is just,,,,, fine? Also what is the lesson here??? Blonde hair is magic and brown hair is not??? Weird.

Private Benjamin

Cute but it falls apart.

Leaving Las Vegas

VERY depressing! Kind of glad I saw it? Would have been fine never watching it though.

Bob & Carole & Ted & Alice

The seventies were strange but Dyan Cannon dressed well is the moral of this story.

North By North West

Felt like semi-enjoyable required reading but also I fell asleep watching this so I don’t think I actually know how it ends?

Rope

Ugh. Pass.

Step Brothers

TRULY do no understand the hype. Arrest me. Maybe it’s because my parents aren’t divorced? There are much better buddy comedies out there that aren’t quite so stupid.

The Exorcist

I get that it’s iconic and that it was terrifying at the time but also this movie barely made any sense and it felt like you had to know a lot of back story on things before you watched it. Also, okay — so he offers himself up to Satan and then tosses himself out a window. Is Satan dead now? Wouldn’t that be a bigger deal? Or did Satan just jump into someone else’s body? Wouldn’t THEY be possessed? This barely made sense. ALSO SHUTUP ABOUT SPOILERS. THIS MOVIE HAS BEEN OUT FOR LIKE 50 YEARS ALREADY.

Reality Bites

I watched this because a podcast told me to. SNOOZE.

The Master

The Master Cleanse is more fun to endure.

Collateral

Tom Cruise but make it boring.

Phantom Thread

My boyfriend loves this movie and likes to quote the thing about asparagus and oil. I absolutely hated this movie and tried to take frequent trips to the bathroom and kitchen so I didn’t have to watch it but Dan would always pause it until I came back. Thanks. 🙃

Mission Impossible 2

FINALLY!!! THE WORST MOVIE WE WATCHED!!! #1!!!! CAPITAL B, BAD!!!! I didn’t watch Mission: Impossible but I can assure you, ANYTHING is better than very stupid Mission: Impossible 2. This was a total waste of time. Watching George O’Malley scratch 007 into Meredith Grey’s hand is a better time than streaming this. SKIP.

I’ve Finally Discovered My QuaranTALENT

My Instagram feed has become a parade of people I know displaying their hidden talents. I had no idea so many of them could make focaccia bread! Or cross stitch! Or build furniture! And while it’s been wonderful to watch, it’s also inspired me to try to find my own.

After crashing and burning at friendship bracelets, failing miserably at French braids and making my boyfriend ingest a truly awful fried rice made with apple chicken sausage, I’ve finally figured out what MY hidden quarantine talent, or “quaranTALENT,” if you paid attention to my headline — is.

Shockingly, it’s not TikTok (although I definitely think it’s hers), or baking banana bread (we know how that turned out), cutting my hair (have yet to attempt), or even tie dying sweats.

Here is what it is: BAKING COOKIES.

I am actually really freakin good at this? I have made mostly chocolate chip (my preferred cookie), some gluten free with choccy bits and most recently, a vegan oatmeal chocolate chip recipe from the NYT cooking app that used a banana instead of butter or eggs. And they’ve all been delicious.

I really did not bake cookies often before this? The last time I recall making some was for my boyfriend in college and I burned them.

Go figure.

I am much more of a cook (fried rice aside) than a baker because cooking = playing and baking = rules.

Plus, baking is really just chemistry and I failed chem in high school. Shoutout Doctor Kasparian, C Block!

However, I have found calming magic in the methodical baking of cookies. I get a lot of pleasure from mixing and then forming the sticky little dough balls in my hands, then smooshing them a little on to the crinkly parchment paper resting atop my cookie sheet. My brain gets calm knowing you can basically put anything in a cookie — chocolate chips, peanut butter, sprinkles, shredded coconut, pretzels, etc… and it will turn out okay.

I like the way they smell.

I like that if they are a lil lumpy it’s okay.

I like that they take 10 mins to bake.

I like the way they look sitting in the Tupperware that I have now coined my “cookie container.”

I enjoy this process so much I have even briefly flirted with the thought of purchasing a cookie jar. Is that gauche? Just look at this gorgeous one from Williams Sonoma and tell me I’m wrong!

Anyway.

What’s your quarantalent? Do you have one? Do you WISH you had one? What would it be? Let me know in the comments. I’ll be here, looking at cookie recipes.

xx

L

So Everything Sucks & The World Feels Horrible

Now what?

I tried to bake banana bread today. Chrissy Teigen’s recipe. I had been looking forward to it all week and even braved the store to buy some brown-ish bananas. But because I was too excited and didn’t remember to check, I hadn’t noticed that my roommate and I didn’t have a bundt pan to bake it in….or really any proper pan to bake it in. She has an 8×8 brownie tin and tbh it kind of sucks.

The other half of this bad news black and white cookie is that our oven doesn’t heat evenly and I have also found that the temp drops while cooking!

So basically my beloved, vanilla pudding, chocolate chip Chrissy recipe was 75% perfectly baked with a circle of raw banana bread dough in the middle.

That’s kind of how life has felt recently.

We have so many good things and then there’s just this sinister center, spoiling it all. You can delete Twitter, you can avoid Apple News, you can walk from Studio City to Silverlake and fill your Uggs with blood blisters but you can’t outrun the bad news of what’s happening in this life, right now, all over the world.

I texted my best friend Andrew this morning and told him about my bread.

“Honestly, I’ve had that happen before and my advice to you is just…eat the cooked outside and move on,” he said.

This morning it felt overwhelming and exhausting and discouraging to still be quarantining with absolutely no signs of things going back to our regular pace of life. Also, a deli in LA that has been around longer than I have been alive, is closing officially and for some reason that news really sunk me because as a Jew, and as a person who loves delis — I hate seeing good places I went to with my grandparents close.

But after a lot of crying this morning (bc bread and deli and also quarantine) I have decided starting this today, I am going to try to take to heart the words of my best friend — not just in regards to my banana bread (I did eat the cooked portion and it WAS divine. Thank u Chrissy!) but to all aspects of this life and this sucky situation.

I will eat around it.

I will consume the good parts while acknowledging that yes, the under-baked glop did ruin my perfect thing, but that I’ve still got to move on.

There are other breads to bake. And if I don’t feel like baking, fuck it! There are a ton of local bakeries that need help right now and I’ve got the funds. I can find joy in my favorite things in other ways.

Plus, it wasn’t a total loss. It was also a learning experience. I now know I need to buy a bundt tin so like…if anyone can show me a small business that sells bakeware it would bring me joy to give them my coins.

Everything sucks and the world feels horrible but there’s a good 75% that’s still edible and yummy and full of things to enjoy like watching the movie Charade or taking a bath surrounded by scented candles, eating pasta with lots of cheese, or walking all the way to the top of the hill to get a gorgeous view of the valley.

One day all of this will be over.

Eventually.

I hope.

Until then

75% yours

xx

P.S. LESS DEPRESSING POSTS ON THE WAY SOON I SWEAR!!!

Life After Lashes

When I was in college, I genuinely believed that I would die of embarrassment if a boyfriend saw me without makeup. My mother once told me that Dolly Parton’s husband had never seen her without her full glam on, (which, who knows if this is true lol) so I dedicated myself to always carrying around concealer, a lipstick and of course– mascara.

We could go into the patriarchal structures that put me (and my mom and Dolly) here, but that seems time consuming. Instead I will just say, I feel better with it on. Especially on my eyes.

I have lost probably hours of my life — if you were to add up all the time I spent from ages 14 to 24 — curling my lashes and mascara-ing them in whatever waterproof version of “blackest black” I could find.

This is just facts, okay? My natural lashes are stick straight. They barely hold a curl. They are also that sort of nothing-y “bronde” color that was so popular with celebs in 2016. My sister has eyelashes like a camel (please google camel eyelashes to see that this is a compliment). When she wears mascara, she doesn’t look like she has little sticks jutting out of her eyes, she looks like one blink could carry her away.

ENTER LASH EXTENSIONS

The first time I decided to try lash extensions was because of the rapper Kreayshawn. I was following her on Instagram and couldn’t stop noticing her long, fluffy, perfect inky-black lashes. One day, she tagged the salon. I made an appointment a few clicks later.

That was two years ago. TWO. And I haven’t looked back. The times I have had my normal lashes in between then and now have been because I messed up booking appointments or because I ran out of money and had to wait until the next paycheck to get them.

What’s so good about them???? I wake up and I have lashes. I don’t have sushi rice grains, I have fucking curtains. I don’t have to wear mascara ever expect for when I paint some on my very blonde lower lashes. I just get up and go. It’s so easy!

I feel polished when I have them. I feel pretty. I feel confident. I feel like myself.

While I realize it’s not THAT deep, they’re just tiny hairs glued to my even tinier hairs — CUE CORONAVIRUS

I didn’t have time to book a lash appointment before we were all told to social distance and my lash tech stopped working. I knew my days of perfect lashes were numbered so I tried to enjoy them.

Eventually, I had to remove the 4 that remained stuck to my face (jojoba oil on a cotton round, very gently). It was personally very devastating! And tbh I felt like crying a lot! These lashes — although a luxury — feel like a part of my face.

I guess the only way I can make it make sense to you is this: Imagine one day you woke up and someone had shaved off your eyebrows. While there is a chance they won’t grow back, typically they do. So while you know it’s not the end of the world, you still have to adjust to being like HOLY FUCK I HAVE NO EYEBROWS!!!

Sure you can paint them on but wouldn’t you rather have the eyebrows you actually want???? Wouldn’t you feel a little less like yourself when you look in the mirror, because who is that person? And why don’t they have eyebrows???

(I realize that there are people in this world who are also very self conscious about their white blonde eyebrows/lack of brows. I apologize for using this as an example.)

My boyfriend thinks I’m psychotic because of this. He tutted at me when I over-nighted a lash curler and a new mascara from Sephora once my lashes were totally bare.

But this is the reality I am going to have to live in until April 19 (and probably after then because WTF IS GOING ON). I need to become comfortable with my face. I am not even going to pretend I can get to a place of even partial confidence being bare-lashed. So mascara will just have to do.

I haven’t had to apply it or curl my lashes in TWO YEARS. I feel like a newborn. And there are lots of ups and downs. For some reason, the lashes on my left eye lay much more nicely than on my right eye and will all slip easily into the curler. The lashes on my right eye are pieces of shit and like to fuck up my face! It’s fun having sisters who never seem to have met each other, not twins.

I am so so so so lucky and privileged to be healthy and to be able to work from home and to afford groceries and to even complain about this. But honestly, much like every other part of being alive in this 2020 hellscape, it sucks and I’m just going to have to get over it and move on.

I’ve tried to focus on other parts of my face that I like and that’s been nice.

Turns out I quite like my cheeks. My eyebrows aren’t bad either. No one please go and shave them off though. That’ll really throw me.

More later because….what else is there to do?

x

Jessica Simpson Is the Paulo Coelho of Our Generation

Hi!

We’re back.

Blogs take a lot of time, dedication, and money and unfortunately we have none of those things.

But what we DO have is Jessica Simpson’s tell-all, Open Book.

If you’re a loyal reader, you know we were and still are OBSESSED with Jessica’s pregnancy foot pics that documented her monstrous swollen ankles.

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Any remedies?! Help!!!!

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We are not Quentin Tarantino. We just loved the radical honesty and truly amazing IG content. Show me another female celebrity doing this much to document their changing body (sans gross sensual belly pics) through a similarly humorous and horrified gaze!!

Although we haven’t listened to a Jessica Simpson song since 2006, we–meaning I, Lily– purchased the audiobook of Open Book out of genuine curiosity.

I’d been seeing headlines around town about it. Something, something John Mayer ‘Sexual Napalm,’ CLICK– and that she spared no celebrity (including herself) in telling her truth. We love a strong woman!!!

I am a paperback girl but because I drive 75623646723423 hours to work and back every day I have become an audiobook girl as well.

What you need to know about this book is that it is:

1. Narrated by Miss Simpson.

2. Does not spare a SOUL except goddess Britney Jean Spears.

3. Sad as hell and will make you cry.

I was expecting a fun, easy celeb read like Next Level Basic by Stassi Schroeder or maybe something with a little juice like literally anything by Andy Cohen. I’ve been on a string of creepy books because I can listen to them in the car without getting scared (shoutout Baby Teeth) and weird books (anything Otessa Moshfegh) and wanted a palate cleanser.

What I got was an insanely compelling, tear-jerking, unflinching look at what it was/is to be a 90’s teen star turned TV personality turned business woman turned disaster turned mom? Idk I haven’t finished the book yet tbh.

BUT WHAT I HAVE LISTENED TO IS REALLY FUCKING GOOD (and I’m like 70% through).

Her entire childhood is movie-worthy. It’s wild listening to her stories about auditioning for Disney and losing it out to Britney Spears (who she NEVER says a bad word against). There is totally some venom towards Xtina and Justin Timberlake but like, to be expected. She talks a lot about her marriage with Nick Lachey (remember him? lol) and her substance abuse problems.

You get to learn a lot about CaCee Cobb, wife of Donald Faison! There is a part where she talks to Celine Dion while in the hospital on a lot of pain meds! It’s magic!

Basically, this is a great read if you are either a fan of Jessica’s or looking to become one. Or if you are someone who really likes Friday Night Lights and The Righteous Gemstones or watch a lot of Fixer Upper and are scared of Chip and Joanna Gaines.

This book is making me want to go to Texas.

This book is making me want to stream “With You” and pretend I’m in an Amanda Bynes movie. If this isn’t a ringing endorsement then I don’t know what is.

Also, her book tour looks have been SICKENING in the best possible way.

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Brrrr ❄️ #OpenBookLOOKS

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Channeling my inner Elle Woods 💕#OpenBookLOOKS

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Anyway, just felt the need to share. Maybe you’ll hear from me again, maybe you won’t.

Writing this felt like getting back on a bicycle only to realize you have two flat tires.

So who knows.

Laters on the menjay

L