Saturday, December 20, 2014

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Welcome to the world of DIY success: Life beyond your degree

In a manner totally unprecedented for undeclared college sophomores, today I questioned what I am doing with my life. While meeting with a teacher about a research paper I had written for a class, my professor, who I respect greatly, asked me what I want to do after graduation.

Monday, December 1, 2014

For when you’re feeling SAD: beating seasonal depression

Liz: Ugh, I hate January. It's dark and freezing and everyone's wearing bulky coats, so you can do some serious subway flirting before you realize the guy is homeless. Work is awful. Everyone's snippy and tense.

Jack: Well, the lack of sun makes people depressed. It's called Seasonal Affective Disorder.

Liz: Oh, is that where the word ''sad'' comes from?

Jack: What? You think ''sad'' is an acronym invented by psychologists?– 30 Rock

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

A blog post about blog posts

Things are about to get really meta.

By meta, I sort of mean boring.

Because today I am writing a blog post about blog posts (yes, I know you can read the titles of these pages, stahppppp).

I looveee blogging but as you may have noticed, recently my posts have been pretty infrequent. As I start making some decisions about what this blog will look like during the year, I've been struggling with writing content.

Do I binge post the last few recipes of summer before going on a recipe dry-spell all year or should I gradually ease myself into "musings" posts, which is all I will probably be able to post during the year. Or should I consider adding new content to my blog?

So many questions.

The point is, running a blog is really difficult sometimes. Sometimes you're not in the mood to write, sometimes you have nothing interesting to write about, and sometimes you realize that anything you write would be boring (aka, this post).

So today I am forcing myself to post because that's what blogging is about.

More than anything, this post is just a tip (to all you bloggers or wanna-be bloggers out there).

Keep writing. Even when you're bored. Even when you have nothing interesting to say. Even when all you can write about is how you don't know what to blog about.

Today I don't know what to blog about, but thank you for everyone who reads this blog anyways.

Coming back at cha with content soon.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Some healthy advice

I recently mentioned in a post that I was trying to lose weight/eat cleaner/be healthier, and since then several people have asked me about that process. You guys have had questions about what I eat, what I do to exercise, and just about general tips for being healthier so today I thought I'd share some thoughts.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Watermelon raspberry slushies

I am writing this post explicitly for the purpose of not posting about balsamic vinegar.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Happy Father's Day

I've written a post about my father before, so I'm not going to rant endlessly about how awesome he is today. In fact, I'm sort of selfishly taking this opportunity to share something I have learned over the past few years.

You will never appreciate your parents early enough. That's sad, and I wish it weren't true, but almost all of my colleagues have expressed the same sentiment.

When you're living at home it can be easy to overlook how much your parents do for you. Not just by making you food, driving you to school, and paying for your expenses, but by making the choice to live a life that is focused around you.

Your parents don't have to choice to not care about you for a day. If they're tired, or sad, or angry, they have already surrendered their ability to just disregard you. If they want to leave for a few days, for most people it's just not that easy. More importantly than that, your parents give up 18 years of their own dreams to make yours come true.

Recently I have been overwhelmed by how horrifying this idea is. That my parents, smart, charismatic, accomplished, and driven people could have taken all the time I've been alive to pursue their dreams, travel without worrying about my sister and I fighting, and just generally do the things that make them happy.

For all of you who don't like your parents, who don't think they do enough for you, I hope you realize how much they've done just by virtue of you existing. Someone gave up their independence and a piece of their life to make yours happen.

That is mind blowing.

I don't want to rant forever, but today's post is dedicated to my dad. My dad is one of the most capable people I've ever met, if not the single most capable. Career success aside, my dad's personal accomplishments range from being an incredible musician to acquiring several levels of both fixed wing and helicopter certification. My dad is driven, multi-talented, and never boring.

He's also done more for me than I will probably ever be able to understand or thank him for. My dad has supported me in so many ways and given up more for me than I will ever be able to give him in return.

I am so deeply saddened that I can't be with him on father's day, but I can smile knowing that he is somewhere thousands of feet above the ground looking down at a world that he opened himself whenever it didn't open for him.

If you are lucky enough to be with your dad today, I envy you. Tell him you love him and try at least for just today to show him the gratitude he deserves. I hope my dad knows how much I appreciate him, and can feel how much I love him every day, but today especially.

Happy father's day.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Monday, June 9, 2014

Paris: The Highlights Reel

I don't even know where to begin.

I'm tired, sick (I knew it would happen), and probably not formulating coherent sentences given the combination of those two factors, but I feel so happy and grateful for the experience I had this past week.

Along with a group of 13 other students, I spent the last week on a study tour in Paris hosted by the George Washington University debate team and the French Embassy. The students on the trip represent the best debaters and speakers of the Lafayette Debate tournament, a competition hosted in Washington DC in the Spring about French and American issues, and our trip included both tourist activities and meetings with relevant political and industry figures who deal with French culture and cultural protection.

There are a lot of things I could say about this trip. I could explain how lucky we are to have met the people we met, see the things we saw, and learn so much about French cultural and politics. I could describe the beautiful city that is Paris, and all of its nooks, crannies, and unusually large amount of Japanese restaurants. But in typical Kristen fashion, I think the best way I can commemorate my experience in Paris is to share a short (ha... as if I could write something short) recollection of my favorite moments and experiences.

This is the Paris highlight reel. Everything we did could be considered a highlight, but these experiences make up the best of the best, or more suitably the crème de la crème.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Cheesy crockpot chicken chili

Over the past two years, I have been an on and off sometimes pescetarian. Sometimes I'm really good at it too -- I've gone up to 7 months without eating any meat!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Friday, May 16, 2014

Back to my roots

Despite what the contents of this blog might suggest, I actually take pictures of things that aren't edible. In fact, before I ever instagrammed my first froyo or took my first "quality" food photograph, I photographed everything but food.

That's actually how this whole adventure started. Before I was a blogger, I was just a really hungry sixteen year old who loved taking pictures of food and playing with plating. Before that, I was a fourteen year old with gorgeous friends who loved taking pictures of her peers in hopes of making them see how special and beautiful they all were. Before that, I was a ten year old who received a digital camera for Christmas and thought it might be cool to take a picture of some clouds and enter them into a contest.

It's a good thing that ten year old won that contest.

Like a lot of kids these days, I cycled through a pretty expansive selection of hobbies in my childhood. I did soccer, ballet, piano, ski racing, swim lessons, tennis, a short exploration in theater and musical theater, journalism, student government, Latin competitions, creative writing, some singing, and yes, even a brief season in both gymnastics and little league.

But out of those activities, photography was the one that always stuck. Not in the aggressive way debate has stuck itself into my life, but in a passive, sentimental way. Photography is like the friend you can go five years without calling and still pick up right where you left off when life finally gives you the time to reunite. Photography is comfy, it's soothing, and it's one of my favorite modes of expression.

Yesterday, for the first time in months, I had the opportunity to photograph one of my most beautiful friends. While I don't often find the time to photograph at school, having my fingers wrapped around the body of my camera and barking directions at my patient, lovely, always enthusiastic model felt not only good, but natural.

I would love to rant on about how beautiful Misha is and how happy I am with the photos, but you can take a look on your own.

Photos are up on my facebook business page. It would be pretty cool if you liked the page too. Despite the update in equipment and expertise, the ten year old inside of me would still really love the support.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Mango lime margaritas: A non-food post (sort of?)

I did something out of character. I won't say it's surprising though because if you both know me well and read the title of this post, then you already know what it is.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Mahi Mahi burrito bowls with strawberry mango salsa + a month of blogging!

I have so much excitement to share I'm not sure I can even fit it into this post. I tried to fit it all into the title, but my blogging domain wouldn't let me... so you're just going to have to read the whole post to get all of it. Or just look at the pictures -- that's the fun part anyways!

So let's start with the biggest happy news: I'm home! Away from dorm food, away from horrible indoor gym workouts, and away from school work. I'm officially on summer vacation, and while I intend on writing a post on my freshman year soon (hopefully), I am so excited to be back in a kitchen that I couldn't wait to share the happy news.

I'm going to be food blogging for a month! From now until I leave for Paris at the end of May, I hope to post recipes at least three times a week along with other posts. I have been waking up in the middle of the night with ideas for recipes and reading food blogs between studying for finals, and I am so ready to cook so many new, healthy, wonderful foods. I hope you guys are as pumped as I am. It's going to be pretty great.

But onto the next happy news:

These bowls.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

A letter to my future little: A reflection on my first semester in a sorority

To my future little,

I hope this finds you well. I know we don't know each other yet, and we're not going to meet each other for quite some time, but there are some things I think you ought to know and things I want to tell you before you embark on your adventure as a member of Gamma Phi.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Sisters, love, national sibling day, I hate titling posts

Anyone who has known me and my sister for an extended period of time can tell you we haven't exactly been the best of friends. Between the ages of about eleven and seventeen, my sister and I fought frequently, bickered even more frequently, and generally caused each other a lot of pain. This knowledge is something I not only constantly carry, but something that I am persistently haunted by. I was not the friend my sister deserved, and neither was she.

But she was also still my sister, and for that I always loved her. Today is national sibling day, and I've been thinking a lot about what it means to be a good sister. Though I know I wasn't always that to my sister, I do believe the past year has taught me a lot about what it means to be a good sister, or a good sibling in general.


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

On the road to "recovery": Reflections on depression
Sipping at green tea and reflecting on how quickly the end of my freshman year of college is approaching, I recently decided to read back through the blog I kept during high school. I'm a big advocate of blogging, journaling, or in some way documenting your thoughts and goals. For me, having undergone a dramatic transformation since high school, having a record of my growth has been an inspiring, motivating, and uplifting aspect of my life, as it has served as a reminder of how things can get better, and of how malleable the future is.

However, as I read through my (often stupid, and almost always over-dramatic) accounts of my junior and senior years of high school, I was taken aback by a number of posts. Not only because of their content, but also their quantity. Beginning in the Spring of 2011, my blog was updated with posts like the following on an almost biweekly basis:

How I feel about life: A rant.
I’m a failure. Please note choice of words — I haven’t failed. I’m a failure. The noun. The type of person who doesn’t deserve to interact with other people. Or eat. Or even breathe. I don't deserve to exist.
And I know that other people think it’s okay, and will be my friend anyways, and won’t hate me because of it. But it’s not about what other people think. I want to think it’s okay, and not hate myself because of it.
I don’t deserve anything. I don’t deserve friends, I don’t deserve anything I have, I don’t deserve to eat. And right now I don’t feel like I deserve to live. I'm sorry to everyone who has supported me for letting you down. I don't deserve your support, and I'm sorry. I'm sorry for taking up space in the universe.
I don't deserve all the good things and people in my life, I don't deserve to be alive, and I don't want to be anymore.
I'm done.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Ricotta Herb Soufflés (An ode to cheese)

You know what's awesome? Cheese. 

You know what's not awesome for my wants-to-be-svelte physique? Cheese.

I actually only wrote that sentence so that I could use the word svelte. Actually, it will become relevant soon. But, I digress. 

The point of this post is that cheese rocks and you should eat it. You should eat it in large quantities, at every meal, and whenever given the opportunity. 

I love cheese. I always have. Not only do I love cheese, but I love all cheese. Who's discriminating here? Not me. 

Friday, March 14, 2014

Ahi tuna tacos with mardi gras slaw

I'm going to say something shocking:

I don't like tacos.

To be fair, for anyone who knows me well, this probably isn't all too terribly shocking. Carbs and I have a love hate relationship (I hate them, I love them, I hate that I love them?) and I don't really see why the makings of a good taco just have to be confined to a tortilla.

Because tortillas are delicious. That's why.

Like I said, love hate relationship.

The insides of these tacos definitely need not be limited to the confines of a tortilla. I served myself one taco and had the equivalent of another in the form of just a clump of taco "stuff."

But do you need these tacos in your life? Yes. An absolute, definitive, unequivocal yes. And that's coming from someone who doesn't like tacos.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Friday, February 28, 2014

Honesty and eating disorders: Stop lying to yourself

It's National Eating Disorder Awareness Week and you know what that means?

It's time to be honest... really honest.

I'm going to say something here because I need to acknowledge that it's the truth. After years of struggling with restrictive eating, binge purge eating, and a blend of multiple disordered eating behaviors, I have relapsed into a stage of eating that I'm really struggling with. So here's the truth:

I have a binge eating disorder.

There. I said it. That wasn't so bad.