SW 32: You Hear That?

It’s The Sound of Money Dying

Black Friday, otherwise known as what in the F&%$ did I do.

At first these friendly emails started coming in promoting Black Friday sales,”Hey Cristina! We saw these shoes and thought of you, get them now 25% off”.

I thought to myself, “Wow this is early in the week.  It’s only Tuesday, but yea that sale sounds great.  Will have to check that out”.  I got caught up in the whole surviving Thanksgiving thing, so never really made it to shop.

By Thursday I felt like the stores were threatening me to go to their sites.  Multiple emails saying “Come shop these shoes now or you will never see your children again.”

Ok, maybe this is not verbatim, but it was definitely the underlying message behind the emails. My inbox was overflowing with multiple emails from stores I didn’t even know I had signed up for.

Somewhere between the turkey hangover and being a pushover there I was…. shopping.  I only had the weekend to buy ALL THE THINGS! They would never be on sale again.  It had to be this weekend.  I would get all my Christmas shopping done, get some winter clothes, and an Instant Pot.

I was on fire.  My AMEX would try to fraud alert, and I would assure them- it was me.  Not to worry.

Then it hit me- my husband.  I had to stop. I had gone too far.  I knew it, AMEX knew it, even the stores knew it.  When the packages started to arrive he was going to flip out!  I hit the confirm purchase on my last Black Friday purchase- and swore I was done.

I had a plan.  I would talk to my front desk make sure they trickled the packages out so it wouldn’t seem like so much.

I created my defense “but it’s for the kids- we don’t have any cold clothes we live in Miami- the Instant Pot does it all we can sautee, pressure cook and so much more!”

I knew this wasn’t going to work.  However I was done.  It wasn’t going to happen again.  The deals were gone.

Then it was Cyber Monday.  If you stop hearing from me, it’s because my husband smashed my laptop to stop me from myself.  He probably wasn’t wrong.  In fact- seems like a the fiscally responsible move.  Probably should have ordered a new on the incredible sale Apple was having {note to self for next year}.

Speaking of fiscally responsible- I’m breaking down a few stories going on this week.  I also laid on the sword and watched as many Netflix Christmas movies as possible to tell you which ones to go for and which to avoid.

See you next week (if my laptop and I survive).

xx
Cristina

How to Burn $2 Million: The Kim & Kanye Story

Kim and Kanye have managed to piss off A LOT of people, again with their latest Instagram post showing off their private charter of a Boeing 747.

You’re thinking- what is the big deal? Celebrities fly charters all the time.  Look- I get the charter thing privacy, comfort, convenience.  But let’s grab some perspective, shall we.  A Boeing 747 is a double decker plane that fits more than 600 passengers. Air Force One is a 747.

They were going to be on the plane for so long, Kim brought her trainer to be able to do a workout after they slept “10 hours”.  (I almost threw up in my mouth when I typed that).

The estimated cost to charter this plane is $200,000- $250,000 AN HOUR! So when you do the math, the Kardashian-West Family spent over $2 Million on one flight.

People feel that this makes their $500,000 donation to the California Wild Fires seem a little hypocritical blah blah blah. Climate impact, etc.. I hear all of it, but I’m not interested.  I want to play a different game:  I call it Things You can Buy for $2 Mil.

Small 1 Bedroom Apartment in NY with a nice view
16,000 pairs of Nikes
5,000 meals at Nobu
285,714 meals at McDonalds
2,500 Botox treatments (basically lifetime supply for you and your 10 best friends)
8 shares of Berkshire Hathaway Capital
Bugatti 
2,000,000 bananas
2,500 pairs of Jimmy Choos
400,000 gourmet donuts
2,000,000 Dunkin Donuts donuts
Over 16,000 Instant Pots
You and a friend could watch Drake in concert 6,000 times
Over 100 Birkin Bags
A private Beyonce concert maybe even with JayZ cameo
Maybe not Beyonce but definitely Kelly Clarkson or JLO
20,000 Christmas trees
This private island in St. Lucia
10-15 refurbished 1956 Jaguar Roadsters
Any helicopter you want

What would you do with the 2 Mil? Write me and let me know, I want to hear! Will post the funniest responses…

For the full article on the Kim-Kanye debacle click HERE

Standouts of the Week 

If you are on the fence about whether you should have a gender reveal party. THIS video has been released showing the Gender Reveal Party that literally sparked a fire in Arizona.  The fire burnt down over 47,000 acres and would cost over $8 Million in damages.
Elf on the Shelf.  I wish I was one of those people who liked bringing out. Giuseppe, our elf and having him get up to no good around the house.  Alas, I am not.  As if any of us needed one more thing to do.  Every year he comes later and later (oops).  Check out Funny or Die’s hilarious take on everyone’s favorite elf.

If I have inspired fiscal responsibility at all… I recently listened to Money Guru,Carmen Rita Wong, on the Latina to Latina Podcast hosted by Alicia Menendez (a must) and her tips on managing our money, which begins with us talking about it.  Loved her insight.  Would strongly recommend, follow link HERE.

Speaking of podcasts. I was just a guest on a new podcast called, The Joyful Hour, talking a little about my family history and what my life is like in this circus.  You can check it out HERE.

TV Addict Update  

As we have established, time and time again, I watch too much TV.

What’s on my list to watch next? My Brilliant Friend (HBO), a reliable source tells me it’s incredible!
Have a suggestion? Let me know

I took it upon myself to watch all I could of what Netflix had to offer in the Christmas romance category, so that I would be able to tell you all which ones are worth binging this holiday season. I even ranked them in order of cheesiness so you could find what might work for you and your tolerance for predictable romance.  No, no! Don’t thank me.  It was a labor of love, and also not as easy as it sounded… here’s what I got

Squander:
1: to spend extravagantly or foolishly DISSIPATEWASTE
ex: Kim and Kanye squandered a fortune

2to cause to disperse SCATTER

3to lose (something, such as an advantage or opportunity) through negligence or inaction

“I write this to you my brothers while still 53 million dollars in personal debt… please pray we overcome… this is my true heart”
– Kanye February, 2016
This week was a little slow so here are two #throwbacks for anyone who needs a solid laugh.
Jimmy and Rachel Brosnahan give us a preview of Season 2 of the Marvelous Miss Maisel (so excited!)
James Corden + Mark Wahlberg hit the gym together at 4 AM

A Very Netflix Christmas

A lot of things happen after Thanksgiving. Our jeans fit way more snug.  Stores basically go into competition with each other over who can offer us the biggest discount.  Holiday music is now officially everywhere.

TV also takes a hiatus.  All our favorite shows do this new thing called “Fall Finale” and we are left without new episodes.  Cue the Hallmark Channel.  It becomes the premier destination for women everywhere.

But Hallmark is no longer the only show in town.  Something extra special has  come to us this year via Netflix.  The best part?  An endless supply of Christmas Cheese and Romance are at your fingertips.  You don’t have to wait around anymore to see what Hallmark is going showing us.  We get to binge this entire genre without any limitations.  The sky is the limit, people!

Naturally, I tasked myself with scoping out as many of these movies as I could, only so that I could give you a shortcut to the one’s that are worth your time.    I know- I am a so selfless.  Basically a saint.

These movies aren’t written to win awards, or tell a perfectly beautiful story that will be timeless for years to come.  The actors aren’t the best in the business, but they’re all really pretty and get the job done.   We have seen all of these stories before- but that is not why we watch.  We watch for the perfect balance of cheesy drama and pure, unbridled, reach for the stars kind of predictable happiness.

So here it is my breakdown of the “most suggested” Christmas movies now available on Netflix.   Now if anyone needs me- I am somewhere face down humming Mariah’s “All I want for Christmas is You” trying to figure out how to function out in a world that isn’t all whirlwind Christmas romances and life changing coincidence, sigh.

*movies ranked in order from least cheesy to most cheesy and give a score of 0-100 (100 being extremely cheesy, and 0 the least)

Love Actually:  CLASSIC PERFECTION. (Cheese Score:  40%) Since it’s premier in 2003- this movie has defined Christmas.  I don’t think there has ever been a holiday season where I don’t watch it.  It is the bar setter for all other Christmas movies and the perfect opening for this list.  It’s completely predictable, straightforward, awkward, corny, romantic, and has a dancing Hugh Grant.  It is what all Christmas movies aspire to be.  If you have never seen this list… I can’t finish this sentence.  It’s impossible you have all seen this.   Thank you Netflix for bringing it to us this season…

The Holiday Breakup: MOST LIKELY TO HAPPEN IRL. (Cheese Score: 62%) It moves to the top of the list for one main reason- sex.  Because let’s face it- these movies never do! So we see this couple through their entire relationship and not just the first two days where they met and fall madly in love with each other.  I really was expecting a bomb here, and don’t get me wrong it’s still a Christmas romcom but I dug it.  Seems like you know just what will happen here- BUT it takes a twist.

Christmas Inheritance:  BEEN THERE BUT LOVE IT ANYWAY. (Cheese Score: 70%)   We have seen this story before, but so what.  We can’t disqualify our holiday movies this way.  It’s about the journey.  I liked this one.  I mean it was cheesy, but in all the right ways.  It was a heart warmer and only lagged a little towards the end.  I loved the cast, I mean it even has Andie MacDowell and a couple other recognizable faces. What’s not to love?

A Christmas PrinceBottom line: WATCH (CHEESE SCORE 78%)  Undercover reporters, family secrets, a prince charming.  What else do your holiday romance dreams involve? This checks all the boxes.  This movie was such a hit for Netflix last year, it probably spurred a whole new onslaught of cheese to be launched into our streaming universe.  So also, Thank you A Christmas Prince, the gift that keeps on giving.

The Princess SwitchBRING ON THE CHEESE (Cheese Score 84%) It’s almost like this movie combines The Parent Trap with My Best Friend’s Wedding and A Christmas Prince.  A combination like this can only result in one thing- Christmas movie magic.  It’s just the right balance of cheesy and adorable to make it through and walk away happier.

The Christmas Chronicles: SANTA BABY! (CHEESE SCORE 84%) This is a different kind of movie.  It isn’t romantic or cheesy.  Kurt Russell can even make the role of Santa hot.  It’s a heart warming story of a brother and sister bonding on Christmas while interfering in Santa’s deliveries.  Great for the kids- it doesn’t blow our cover for those who are still keeping Santa alive in their home, and actually provides a solid theory for how he makes it happen on Christmas Eve.

The Holiday Calendar. OVERBOARD. (CHEESE SCORE 93%) This one was tough for me to make it through.  I had to walk away a few times.  It seemed too predictable and the acting (even for Christmas movie standards) was truly bad.  However it did get better, and the ending was sweet.

Christmas Wedding Planner. HOLY CHEESE. (CHEESE SCORE 96%). It’s literally the Wedding Planner (think JLo) mixed a little with Rush Hour but set during Christmas and with no Matthew McConaughey or Alex Karev.  Yet somehow it still worked.    Kelly Rutherford brings a very upper east side Lily Van der Woodsen vibe to her role, which I always can appreciate.  The plot is actually terrible, as I am thinking about it right now I realize it’s painful.  However if you can overlook major character flaws and just accept the happy ending- this is for you.  I know I liked it.

Christmas With a View: A PORN WITH NO RELEASE (CHEESE SCORE 110%) Oh man.  I lost count of the number of times I cringed watching this movie.  More than I felt comfortable with for sure.  My friend said it perfectly, it was cheesy like a porno but unfortunately just never got to the porno part.  Failed restauranteur, Clara,  falls in love with reality star chef, Shane in the small Mountain town after about two days.  However in all these movies we have that, why does it seem extra inauthentic in this movie?  Terrible acting? Terrible dialogue? It’s so so hard to tell.  I would say watch this movie just to try and decide for yourself.  Maybe take a shot every time you have to close your eyes out of sheer disbelief.

SW 31: A Thanksgiving Survival Guide

SW 31: A Thanksgiving Survival Guide

Gobble Gobble

Thanksgiving is next Thursday.  Let that sink in… next Thursday.  As I mentioned last week, it feels like I am on this high speed treadmill that I cannot jump off of.

So today I bring you a fascinating riddle? What makes an incredibly fast, non-stop treadmill ride even better?

Drama! And something about the holidays just brings out everyone’s crazy freak flag.  

Suddenly everyone is competing for time. Demands are made.  I’m a 34 year old woman who is very nervous to answer any matriarchal phone calls around this time.

If you’re family dynamics are anything like mine, you have one side of the family that plans in advance (arguably too far), and the other side of the family that loves to throw a last minute plan.  

Both families feel they are in the right.  Arguments can be made they are.  Both families expect you to be there, on time, and ready to eat.  I hate disappointing anyone.  Particularly people who want to feed me.  So I try and figure it out…

“Oh no, we can’t do dinner at that time because we have this other obligation.”
“No that won’t work because your grandmother doesn’t want to be in the same room as so and so and you know how that is.”
“You spent Thanksgiving with them last year.”

For the love of GOD! Can’t we all just get along and eat some food?!

The way the chips have fallen for us this year it is looking like we have a 12 PM lunch, then a 2 PM lunch, and will also be cooking a turkey at my house because I am hosting another side of my family later at 5 PM.  There is no need to panic… Right? We can call it the Thanksgiving shimmy.

Oh you want me to bring a side dish to the 12 PM lunch? A desert to the 2 PM lunch.  Done and done!  I’m not freaking out- YOU are freaking out.

In all seriousness, I used to get so stressed out about this.  At one point in my husband and I’s history we used to do 4 Thanksgivings.  So really- 3 sounds kind of easy.  I got this! Watch me back it up. 

Whatever your family drama- or maybe you don’t deal with the family tug-o-war and have found a way to bring everyone together (I salute you), one thing remains- we could all use this day of food, family and gratitude.

I dedicated this newsletter to giving you a few of my favorite recipes, some tips for hosting your very own Thanksgiving and of course some internet gossip.

xx
Cristina 

I moved up the Late Night Roundup because the Migos and James Corden Carpool Karaoke is mandatory viewing! TRUST!
In the words of our beloved Neil Diamond, James Corden taking a ride with Migos in this week’s #carpoolkaraoke is “SO GOOD SO GOOD SO GOOD”
Jimmy Kimmel being woken up by male strippers on his birthday is a must watch! Some call it karma for torturing kids every year for adult amusement.

A Thanksgiving How To By: ME! 

I know what you’re thinking.  Who the F is this girl to be dishing out any advice about how to host at all, let alone Thanksgiving.  You aren’t totally wrong.  I would think that too if I were you.  You probably have yet to become privy to the fact that I love Thanksgiving.  I love it so intensely and most definitely in a way that totally crossed weird years ago.

I love hosting it.  It’s one of the only aspects in my life that I want to exert complete control over.   The reason I give to people for hosting, I love bringing families together.   The real reason: no house that we visited ever had all the food that I wanted to eat on Thanksgiving.  I look forward to this food all year.  As my best friend Selena says, “The heart want…

READ the full How To HERE

Standouts of the Week 

APRIL 2019. HBO has finally given us a Season Premier range of dates for Game of Thrones.  April 2019! And if you aren’t hype click HERE for the article and a video that will get you all Dothraki.
Also this is me preparing for Thanksgiving next week:

Pete Davidson is making apologies for his Weekend Update drama in the best way possible! He had Lt. Dan Crenshaw on and they mended the fence the only way SNL knows how…. humor!

The Greatest Showman Soundtrack was just revamped, or some would say Reimagined.  Pink, Kelly Clarkson, Zack Brown Band, Panic at the Disco and more bring a little extra to the already amazing soundtrack.  Check it out HERE on Spotify!

TV Addict Update  

As we have established, time and time again, I watch too much TV.

So here is where I break down for you what I’m watching and give you some ideas…

What’s on my list to watch next? I’m currently in the midst of watching all the Netflix Christmas movies to give you the best!
Have a suggestion for something I should watch? Let me know

I’ve been a little stale lately, keeping up with what I can, but Thanksgiving has been kicking my butt.  I did catch:

John Leguizamo’s Latin History for Morons: I went into this thinking it was going to be funny.  I hadn’t heard really anything about it.  I found after he had been performing this on Broadway, and felt ridiculous for being so out of the loop. Considering, I’m Latin.  It’s actually pretty serious content, with some moments of humor.  He does a really beautiful job of breaking down a subject that not many are familiar with.  You can tell he really studied and is passionate on the subject.  I am embarrassed to admit how much I learned.   There is so much history I was not aware of.  At the end I felt proud of my heritage.  More proud than I have felt in a long time, particularly with all the negative news cycles.  I recommend watching this most definitely, but know what you are getting into.  It was definitely a perspective shift for me.

Gluttonous:
tending to eat and drink excessively; voracious.
Thanksgiving didn’t become a national holiday until over 200 years later! Sarah Josepha Hale, the woman who actually wrote the classic song “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” convinced President Lincoln in 1863 to make Thanksgiving a national holiday, after writing letters for 17 years campaigning for this to happen.

God Bless, Abraham Lincoln

“We sang Backstreet Boys I want it that way”

Thanksgiving: A How to

I know what you’re thinking.  Who the F is this girl to be dishing out any advice about how to host at all, let alone Thanksgiving.  You aren’t totally wrong.  I would think that too if I were you.  You probably have yet to become privy to the fact that I love Thanksgiving.  I love it so intensely and most definitely in a way that totally crossed weird years ago.

I love hosting it.  It’s one of the only aspects in my life that I want to exert complete control over.   The reason I give to people for hosting, I love bringing families together.   The real reason: no house that we visited ever had all the food that I wanted to eat on Thanksgiving.  I look forward to this food all year.  As my best friend Selena says, “The heart wants what it wants.”

Ok, it’s a combination of both of these things.  I love being around family, and I love good food.  Thanksgiving gives me both of these things.  We are all extremely blessed, and at minimum we should take a day to really express that to each other.

I was terrified the first time I was going to make a turkey.   Don’t let the turkey intimidate you.  They are just big chickens! Give them a little love and cook them the right amount of time and you will appear to be a master chef to your guests.  Also, the way the markets sell them now, all of the “giblets” and other things are super easy to take out and very obvious.  Trust me- you will be able to do it.

I’ve made many mistakes over my last 8 years of hosting my own Thanksgiving.  Picked up some lessons and think that at least one of you will find at least one thing useful here.  So here it is, my how to host Thanksgiving crash course.

The Turkey- Go Buy One!

Today is the Friday before our current Thanksgiving (2018).  Depending on the size of your turkey, you may need to go buy it.  In a really hard way- I learned turkeys need more than one day to thaw (correctly).   Most stores are selling you a frozen turkey, and you need to let it thaw out in your fridge (on a cookie sheet or pan to avoid juice spilling).  You need a full 24 hour of thaw time for each 4 lbs of turkey.   I typically do at least a pound a person minimum and always round up about 2-3 lbs- having leftovers is the priority people! If you didn’t make a full on Thanksgiving sandwich the next day- you failed the mission.

Now for all of you who like to live on the edge (or don’t have a ton of fridge space like most of us)- there is a way to thaw it quicker.  I’ve definitely done it this way multiple times, and always say a little prayer of thanks for sending us Martha Stewart.  Click HERE to have Martha’s people walk you through this.

My Favorite Turkey Recipe

It can come from the one and only, Ina Garten.  Not to change the subject, but do you think Ina and Martha are friends? I like to imagine them in Ina’s cottage having BLT sandwiches and Chardonnay swapping recipes…… ok sorry I’m back.

Click HERE for this recipe, it is AMAZING! It requires no extra prep time.  You can literally take your turkey out, clean it, remove all the stuff, pat dry and add these ingredients and the turkey comes out delicious.

People swear by brining the turkey, sounds cool and it really does help keep the turkey juicy- but it’s not necessary at all.  If you have time and like it- great, but don’t stress it.

When cooking the turkey, I like to  baste it every hour.  Set a timer on your phone or with Alexa.   But don’t baste it right before you take it out, you need to let the skin crisp a bit.

Most Important Tip: Let the turkey REST! I once saw Chef Michael Symon (yes, I’m Chef obsessed and I groupie out on them when I meet them).  Either way he gave an entire lecture on this, on The Chew (I’m rockstar cool)- let it rest covered under foil for at least 40 minutes before carving.

If you are Stuffing the Turkey Read This 

The first year- I mastered my turkey.  Now the second year I wanted to get fancy and make stuffing to put into my turkey.  How cool am I? (if you want to unfollow me now I understand).

Important tip- whatever stuffing you are going to put into your turkey.  Do not stuff the turkey with anything warm.  If you put hot/warm things into your turkey’s cavity it could make everyone sick.  Let it cool down, ideally make it the day before and have it completely cold before stuffing it.

Let’s Talk Sides

What constitutes a good side for Thanksgiving is very debatable.  I leave it to you to pick and choose what works for your family and friends.

This year I am hosing 10 adults and 5 kids going with my favorite Mac n Cheese Recipe,  Sweet Potato Casserole, Roasted Corn, Brussel Sprouts and Arroz y Frijoles (because my Abuelo demands it).

Table Top and Serveware

As much as I love cooking and getting all the food ready for Thanksgiving.  I always struggle a little on setting the table.  I’ve gotten much better, and I completely credit my sister-in-law as my guiding light.  She is constantly showing me how to adult.  While I do not come close to her flawless tabletop abilities, I have found a few tricks to make a nice table with minimal effort.

For starters the flowers.  A few different things you can do

  • Beautiful and Cheap: Grabbing a few beautiful flowers at the market and arranging them at home is always your cheapest bet, and will always add a little special touch.
  • Gorgeous and A little more $: I’m actually not the best flower sorter.  I mean, I can get the job done, but it’s aight.  For events like this I typically turn to House of Lilac.  She actually gives great Thanksgiving Decor Tips HERE. I will have a few of her bud vases or small arrangements delivered and put them on the table, and right off the bat my table looks much more polished.  She is also making some pretty outrageous Garlands for anyone wanting to really take it up a 1000 notches.

Let’s Talk Serveware

Having collected a few solid pieces of Serveware really makes everything look more put together.   I love to pick up pieces at either CB2 or Target both have a good range of items that compliment each other, and aren’t too expensive.

YOU MUST Delegate

You’re taking on a lot hosting Thanksgiving! The people coming know that and want to help you.  Let your people help you.  Let them bring an appetizer, a side, desert, and wine.

MOST IMPORTANT TIP: If you’re assigning wine- make sure you assign it to someone who understands the assignment and not the one who will bring the cheap gross shit that no one wants to drink.

Finally- ENJOY!

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!! Hope your family only had a little drama- you know the kind to keep you entertained but not earth shattering.

Love,

Cristina

 

 

 

 

 

Mac n Cheese: Mad Love

At a very young age, I fell madly and deeply in love with Mac n Cheese.  I suppose I can thank Kraft for that, even though we now know that it was less Mac n Cheese and more pasta and yellow dye no 9. I digress.

This mad love affair has only grown stronger.  In fact, my husband knows if we go to a restaurant with Mac n Cheese on the menu- it will be ordered.  Whether it pairs well with our meal or not- ordered.  I simply must know what it tastes like in every single establishment I enter.  If you are wondering whether I have a running list of places with the best- the answer is obviously and perhaps I will share, one day.  If you are also wondering- yes I eat my children’s Mac n Cheese at restaurants- but so do you stop lying.

It goes without saying that I would have a recipe for it.  I have been perfecting it for years. I have tried different cheeses in the past, but found that keeping it simple goes a long way.

Hope you love it!

Ingredients

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 pound elbow macaroni
  • 8 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups whole milk (eyeball it)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Pinch paprika
  • 3  cups grated Cheddar (1 big block plus one small  block at the store)
  • 2 cups grated Colby/Jack Cheddar  (1 big block at the store)
  • 1/2 cup fine bread crumbs (maybe more)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 2-quart baking dish with 1 tablespoon of the butter and set aside.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the macaroni and cook until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain in a colander and rinse under cold running water. Drain well.
  3. Melt the remaining 7 tablespoons butter in a heavy 3-quart saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour, and stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, cook over medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes, being careful not to let the flour brown. Using a whisk, add the milk in a steady stream and cook, whisking constantly, until thick and smooth, 4-5 minutes. Remove from the heat. Add the salt, pepper, cayenne, and most of the  cups of the cheese (reserve 1/2 cup to add to mix with breadcrumbs to top), and stir well. Add the noodles and stir well. Pour into the prepared dish.
  4. In a mixing bowl, combine the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese with the bread crumbs and Essence. Sprinkle evenly over the macaroni and bake until golden brown and bubbly, about 25 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Ina’s Perfect Roasted Turkey

Thanksgiving, that magical time of year when your family gathers and the only thing you do is give thanks and eat good food.  I love it.  My favorite holiday hands down.  No fuss over presents.  No having to pretend to be some mythical creature that leaves candy or surprises for the kids.  Just family and food.

After having my first child, I decided I wanted to start hosting Thanksgiving at our house.  Whether it was just going to be us or our families would come over, I wanted to make this our holiday.  What? I really love turkey.  It’s not weird, you’re weird.

There is something about roasting a turkey that is very intimidating.  The idea of it used to overwhelm me.  Even now when Thanksgiving comes up in conversation (obviously when I bring it up), people seem to put off from hosting Thanksgiving because the idea of roasting the turkey seems to complicated.

I am here to tell you it can be done.  I turned to the person I knew could teach me the ins and outs of roasting the perfect turkey, Ina.   I followed her Perfect Roast Turkey Recipe and have been making her turkey every year ever since.  It is simple but tastes like you had been preparing it for weeks.    I am passing it on to you, treat your bird well.

Happy Basting!

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 pound (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 fresh turkey (10 to 12 pounds)
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large bunch fresh thyme
  • 1 whole lemon, halved
  • 1 Spanish onion, quartered
  • 1 head garlic, halved crosswise

How to

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan. Add the zest and juice of the lemon and 1 teaspoon of thyme leaves to the butter mixture. Set aside.
  3. Take the giblets out of the turkey and wash the turkey inside and out. Remove any excess fat and leftover pinfeathers and pat the outside dry. Place the turkey in a large roasting pan. Liberally salt and pepper the inside of the turkey cavity. Stuff the cavity with the bunch of thyme, halved lemon, quartered onion, and the garlic. Brush the outside of the turkey with the butter mixture and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Tie the legs together with string and tuck the wing tips under the body of the turkey.
  4. Roast the turkey about 2 1/2 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between the leg and the thigh. Remove the turkey to a cutting board and cover with aluminum foil; let rest for 20 minutes.
  5. Slice the turkey and serve.

SW 30: Election Day!

Vote for Pedro!!!

You want to know what October- December feels like for me? Well it feels like I jumped onto a treadmill to do some mild exercise and midway through someone started bumping up the speed on me and I cannot jump off.

You know exactly what I mean.  You have finally convinced yourself that running on the treadmill is a good idea.  So you begrudgingly jump on, and start out at a brisk jog somewhere around a 5.0.  You can do this all day.  Just play a little Beyonce and the time will fly by in no time.

Cue Halloween.  First it was getting three different Halloween costumes, plus figuring out what they can wear to school for the “character parade”.  Suddenly I’m bumped up to a 5.5 and we still need to take them trick or treating.

Alright we got this, 5.5 on the treadmill and we have survived Halloween.  I look at my calendar and see Thanksgiving is a week early this year- and I’m now on a hard run at 6.0.  I love Thanksgiving! It’s my absolute favorite holiday, so why does it feel like I’m now starting to sprint- who the F turned me up to a 7.0. Oh- I did.  I for whatever reason volunteered to make the turkey for not one but BOTH of my daughter’s classes.  Apparently I’m a masochist.

December 1 is my son’s 5th birthday- there’s the 7.5

Plus all these stores with their Christmas countdowns- are they trying to get me to go on anti-anxiety meds- because I will! I don’t need to know when there is 100 days to Christmas- I live with 3 tiny mutants who constantly remind me it’s coming. Now I’m sprinting on an 9.0 and I cannot get off.

On top of all this I am still somehow expected to continue to help my 1st grade daughter with her homework with both of our dignities in tact.  I must still be a good wife, daughter, sister and friend.  Plus I’m supposed to shower.

Remind me to never get on a treadmill again.  To all of you out there who are also sprinting- we got this.  One step at a time.

I rounded up some HILARIOUS videos about voting along with some other headlines to distract us for all this sprinting we are doing.

xx
Cristina

Rock the Vote 

Today is the day! The day that all of these really annoying commercials and attack ads will stop and let us be for about a month before campaigning starts for 2020.  Also ifNikki Minaj and Cardi B can call a truce… isn’t it about time we all just get along?

On a quick serious note, no matter which side you land on, I hope you vote today or found a time to early vote.  There are a lot of things happening right now, and we can’t afford to sit this one out.

Pete Davidson (you may know him as the guy who was engaged to Ariana Grande for a second) broke down some of the midterm candidates on SNL this week.  For anyone on the fence- this won’t help at all but it’s hilarious.

For any Democrats feeling like they got this in the bag or Republicans wanting to laugh check out THIS video or click the image below.

If you think Pete Davidson is as funny as I do- check him out HERE breaking down his thoughts after Kanye had that recent breakdown a couple weeks back.

Standouts of the Week 

Sexiest Man Alive. Praise be, Idris Elba has been named the Sexiest Man Alive. Check out the full article HERE.
All Hail, Jenny From the Mother F’ing Block. She’s turning 50 and looking better than ever.  Also she found a new green dress to spark controversy in. Check out her interview with Instyle HERE.

In the Shallow.  If you are still thinking about this movie (A Star is Born), as I would imagine most of you are- I have good news.  Now you too can achieve Bradley Cooper’s dirty cowboy look.  Click HERE to rock his look.

Did You Get The Shoe of The Season? Post Malone has released a collaboration with Crocs and before you judge- it sold out in 10 minutes. His AP ain’t the only thing goin’ Pyscho. Full story HERE.

Tell Me What You Want What You Really Really Want.  Spice Girls Reunion Tour has officially been announced.  All your favorite spices Sporty, Scary, Baby and Ginger have signed on, but don’t expect an appearance from Posh.  Before any of you get bent out of shape, I wouldn’t be eager to tour around and be away from Davide Beckham either #teamposh Full story HERE.


Meghan Markle is of course pregnant, and totally adorable.  So as a nice break in politics here is a picture of her just because.

TV Addict Update  

As we have established, time and time again, I watch too much TV.

What’s on my list to watch next? Making A Murderer 2 (thanks to Jenny Gonzalez for this rec)
Have a suggestion? Let me know

Homecoming: (Amazon Prime) Julia Robert’s new show is absolutely thrilling! The episodes are only 26 minutes which I absolutely love (remember I’m on a fast moving treadmill right now) and while I only just finished episode 4 it’s all I can think about. Definitely worth the watch.

The Nineties: (Netflix) A documentary about everything that made the 90’s great! The first two are about 90’s TV- so obviously I am bias when I tell you MUST WATCH!

Idiocracy
a form of government in which a country or territory is run by fools
My eyes are now wide open and now realize I’ve been used to spread messages I don’t believe in. I am distancing myself from politics and completely focusing on being creative !!!
Jimmy and Justin and Jessica, Oh MY! Who knows Justin best? #bff #hilarious #pineapple
Jimmy and Benedict Cumberbatch try not to laugh watching youtube clips