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A Book That Perfectly Encapsulates What It's Like to Be a Freshman in College

Plus bars to combat your post-lunch sweet tooth in this week's List.

I didn't know how badly I needed this weekend. Even though it was packed—we celebrated Jonah's birthday on Saturday with a taco crawl, then my brother's birthday last night at Republique—I was still able to find a few pockets to do some much-needed cleaning. After bagels on Sunday, I did four loads of laundry, prepped sauces and vegetables for weeknight dinners and snacks for the week, and scrubbed every surface in our apartment. It literally *glistened* by the time I was done with it. There's something about having a clean apartment that just makes you ready to face the week, amirite? Here are some things I'm loving this week: 


There's an entire shelf on my coffee cart dedicated to granola. It's packed with containers of raw walnuts and cashews, olive oil, and a medley of seeds and alternative flours. But in auditing my pantry this weekend, I also realized that some of the nuts are very much on the verge of going stale, so I baked them into these healthy-enough granola bars. They're perfect for a just-sweet-enough afternoon snack when I need a bit of energy before an after-work workout!

Speaking of goop... my friends and I lost our minds this weekend over this candle. Who's going to be the one to volunteer to buy it because I have to know...? Nose goes!


Elif Batuman's novel The Idiot perfectly encapsulates what it's like to be a freshman in college—the confusion of meeting new people, absorbing new ideas, and going home a changed person—through the lens of a Russian language class (hence the title, borrowed from Dostoevsky) and a crush on a confusingly evasive senior. To be honest, I nearly put it down about 100 pages in, but I'm so glad I stuck with it. By the time I reached half-way and had "figured out" the unique writing style, I could hardly put it down. It's essentially about nothing, but somehow covers everything, and the dry humor had me laughing out loud. 


I used to be obsessed with Mighty Leaf's African Nectar tea. I mean, I still am, but I can't justify the nearly $1 a cup cost, especially when I have two or three cups a day. I finally did something that should have been obvious: Instead of buying the bags, I ordered the loose leaf tea they contain. Turns out it isn't even a mix—it's simply South African Rooibos tea, which tastes almost like a mix of black tea, vanilla, and citrus (it's caffeine-free, by the way)! At a friend's recommendation, I bought a bag on Upton Tea (which is apparently where tea-obsessed people buy their tea unless you live in Paris...). Honestly, it felt a bit like a life hack: The total comes to 9 cents a cup instead of a dollar, tastes better, and is much more sustainable than using a bag each time (I steep mine in this basket). It arrives in an aluminum bag, but I transferred mine over to Weck jars, which look cleaner on my coffee cart. 


You know who makes really good playlists? Music supervisors. After coming across an article on Brienne Rose, music supervisor for the Netflix show, Russian Doll, I fell into a deep dive of her recommendations and mixtapes. I've been streaming this one all weekend, and made a playlist of her recs from the article (which isn't available online, but is in the first issue of Netflix's industry magazine, Queue)!

P.S., I've started my playlist of 2020 Favorites. Of course, most of the songs came out years (even decades) ago, but they're new-to-me songs I'm loving this year! I will be adding more soon, but until then, here's 2019, which is really just 10% ROSALÍA...

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