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An Uplifting Show and a Fresh Take on Greek Meatballs

Plus, a novel that offers a realistic glimpse into the future.

How are you doing? Last week felt... heavy and sad and, perhaps most frustratingly, a loss that could have been avoided in Boulder with stricter gun control. This isn't a "political blog," but it's honestly difficult for me to address anything else, when mass shootings are such a regular occurrence that the list of basic places I'm afraid of going to in America—grocery stores, movie theaters, schools—is only growing. This weekend, I spent a lot of time in nature, enjoying a clear blue day skiing and hiking, which always helps restore me. I hope you were able to do the same. Here's what I'm loving this week:


My mother-in-law gave me The New Wilderness by Diane Cook for Christmas, but I saved it for months, knowing, from the cover copy alone, that I would love it. In it, most of the world lives in an over-crowed, highly polluted city, referred to simply as The City. When the opportunity to move to the last protected wilderness arises, Bea considers it the last hope for her daughter Agnes's health. As part of the "Community," they have seasonal check-ins with Rangers, must deal with complicated group and couple dynamics, and the constant task of their own survival. Cook has created a highly believable near-future, with several twists that kept me on my toes till the final page.


Jason Sudeikis's happy-go-lucky character "Ted Lasso" is so heart-warming in his persistent optimism and kindness, I couldn't help but smile, even during such a heavy week. In it, Ted has been hired to coach a soccer—erm, football—team in London, where he's met with a number of cultural barriers, a super-macho team, and fans who love to hate him. Each episode is only 30 minutes, and has the exact just-cheesy-enough tone I needed this week. You can watch it on Apple+ (and in case you're wondering, yes, I've given up and subscribed to just about every streaming service there is). 


Where has All The Healthy Things been all my life? Since coming across Ashlea's blog a few weeks ago, I've already made a handful of her recipes, all of which knock it out of the park. Last week, I made her Greek Meatballs with Tzatziki Sauce, which may be my favorite. Though I substituted the beef with turkey, it made for an incredibly flavorful and healthy dinner, served over a simple salad of cherry tomatoes and mint, that I can't wait to return to. 


In speaking to my friends about Chloé Zhao's film 'Nomadland,' I realized you either fall into one of two camps: You either find the movie depressing or hopeful. The film follows "nomads" who live in their vehicles chasing seasonal work and seeing the world (most of the nomads play themselves). The "hopeful" camp sees the beautiful community these people have formed, creating encampments in BLM land, while the "depressing" may see the failure in America's system to support those past the age of retirement. No matter how it rings true to you, France McDormand's performance as Fern, a widow and newly anointed nomad, is beautiful, as are the landscapes across the southwest and Badlands. You can stream it now on Hulu. 

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1. I've been loving all of the Geffen theater's online plays. Planning on buying tickets to this performance as soon as they become available!

2. Will absolutely be using my vaccination card to get free donuts when the time comes. 

3. Love the concept of this brand-new online community for bakers. 

4. Daily Floss Embroidery, an Etsy shop launched by a C&C reader and high school English teacher over the pandemic, sent me the sweetest embroidery of Jonah and me from our wedding! Go check out her shop here

5. This movie looks great! And this one looks strange, but could be interesting. 

6. "Looking back, I was more of a cop than a social justice warrior, as people on Tumblr had come to think of me." (NYT)

7. The London International Film Festival is streaming online, and you can get free tickets here (including a short movie my cousin wrote and directed called "The Hideaway"!).

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