Friday 7 Quick Takes (vol 59)


This week on Totes Awesome Channel, we talk about the books we’re currently reading.

Youtube Link

If you don’t have video capabilities, I mention that the last two books I finished were Curious Case of the Dog in the Night-Time and A Million Miles in a Thousand Years (separate post to come). I really enjoyed The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. I now have increased empathy for Autistic people. A Million Miles in a Thousand Years was a good read as well. Donald Miller really pushes for you to “edit” your life into a great story and to embrace whimsy. I’m starting The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks and I am so excited about it.


I got my credit card statement a few days ago. Yeah, I don’t recommend traveling 2 weekends, moving, and getting a dog in the same month. Still cooking most nights and hardly eating out (except when I travel – so last weekend in Houston was glorious). As a cooking neophyte, I am bound to have mishaps.I tried out this recipe and overdid it on the vinegar. I tried saving it with sugar, honey, and milk but to no avail. 12 dollar roast that was meant to last at least 3 days went in the trash.

The chicken, pears, and cream cheese turnovers (above) I made for Jamie were delicious though!


I had leftover avocado from taco night this week, and inspired not to waste and use everything I buy, I followed this recipe and made a single serve avocado milkshake. It was delightful! I used to buy avocado milkshakes all the time for $3-$4 each, while this only cost me 50 cents to make. It’s also considered a traditional drink in Vietnam, so uh, I’m totally counting it as part of my progress towards completing my New Year’s Resolutions.


Speaking of food waste, Jennifer and I went to a screening of “Dive!” at the Blanton Museum last night. The documentary is about one man’s journey with dumpster diving and feeding his family well from the dumpster of Trader Joe’s in L.A. and about the waste culture of America. The stats are staggering. 96 billion pounds of food are dumped in landfills a year, half of what we produce. In recent reports, 1 in 6 people in America are “food insecure,” which means not knowing when and where your next meal will be. How heartbreaking is that? The film was humorous, engaging and compelling. The writer/director was present at the screening to answer questions afterwards. I embedded the trailer in the next take. Click here if you’re interested in buying the documentary. It’s due to come to Netflix soon.

I walked away feeling super inspired to be more aware of my contribution to the mess. It really does start at home. On average, one household in America waste $600 worth of food a year. I made up a meal plan for the next week and we’re totally having tacos both Sunday and Monday night so I could use up the tortillas we have. I may even wake up early tomorrow and make a breakfast taco before work.


Youtube Link


This weekend, I’m driving with former roommate, Brandi to see an old friend of ours get married. The three of us used to be so inseparable and now Jessica is all moved away with a new house and soon to be new husband.

Here’s a photo of us in 2009 at Texas Renaissance Festival. I never fully adjust to the mandatory goodbyes in life.

Me with the bride to be!


This week’s moments of bliss: ♥ Bob (never mind that he did a running head-on tackle to my face during a game of fetch) ♥ homemade avocado milkshake ♥ homemade peanut butter pie ♥ chocolate ♥ finishing a book ♥ cracking open a new book ♥ intellectually stimulating date with Jennifer ♥ Alan cleaning the George Foreman grill (I was dreading that all day and came home to it already clean.) ♥ planning dates with my little from Big Brothers & Big Sisters ♥ coffee breaks ♥ video montages of Ryan Gosling

Question: How often do you throw out food from your fridge?