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The List: The Happy Accident That Led to the Best Weeknight Meal, Ever

Plus the happiest news.

You can take the girl out of Reno, but you can't keep her from returning to the Reno Rodeo every year. That's how the saying goes, right? This weekend, I flew home with Jonah and my brother for three packed days. We headed straight from the airport to go white water rafting down the Truckee River on Friday, followed by a day of kayaking on Tahoe and the 100th anniversary of the Reno Rodeo. Compared to last year, things were low-key, but it was still a whirlwind! As much as I wanted to fit in one more hike, some of my favorite moments were spent sitting outside with my family, watching the sun go down behind the mountains from our back patio. This week, our entire office is taking a quick "summer break" starting on the third, so I'm looking forward to laying low with a pile of books and watching the fireworks from a friend's backyard. Have a happy Fourth! Here's what else I'm loving this week: 


Since Jonah and I started cooking our way through an entire cookbook, we've found ourselves with a lot of awkward leftover ingredients. After making delicious, over-the-top pork burgers last week (we rarely eat meat, but are floating some of our "food rules" for the sake of the project), we found ourselves with a half-empty can of tomatoes and a whole bunch of chorizo. Googling "tomatoes and chorizo recipe" led us to the happy accident of stumbling across what may forever become our favorite weeknight recipe. This "Spanish Baked Rice with Chorizo and Chickpeas" was fantastic for a few reasons:

1.) Its primary components (arborio rice, canned tomatoes, chickpeas, raisins) are pantry staples I always have on hand, so I can usually make it on a whim without running to the store.
2.) It can be easily customized to accommodate most leftovers (swap the meat or add in additional vegetables!).
3.) It's fool-proof and takes just thirty minutes to prep, tops.
4.) It's delicious and healthy!

It was the perfect hearty, post-workout dinner each night. For lunch, I balanced-out the heaviness of it by serving a smaller portion over a bed of spinach, and eating it with a soft-boiled egg. So good and so easy! Seriously, you won't regret it. 


Just because I've worked at Cupcakes and Cashmere for three years doesn't mean I'm immune to being #influenced by Emily. When she recently wrote about her favorite beauty products from Revolve, I purchased the BROWFood's Chamomile Remover on the spot. *Add to cart* I've been trying to phase-out Q-tips from my beauty routine forever, but they really are the best thing for removing mascara and brow messes—until now. Ever since purchasing the Chamomile remover, I've been using it to remove mascara smears from my top lid. It's quicker, easier, and cuts down on the waste from my beauty routine. Just be sure to wipe the tip off on a square of toilet paper every so often to clean it off, otherwise it smears! 


My knowledge of Reddit is at a 0 out of 10, but when a recent Radio Lab episode mentioned the "Today I Learned" subreddit, in which people share interesting facts they learned that day, I immediately went digging. The page is full of little tidbits that range from, "Professionals who walk over hot coals and broken glass have confirmed that walking over Lego bricks is more painful" to "unreasonable" amounts of screen time being illegal in Taiwan for young children, and the post that inspired this entire Radio Lab series. The page is a Kottge-like miasma of random facts.

P.S., If you like the Subreddit, this would make a great gift!


Olivia Newton-John voice: Let's get polit-i-cal, polit-i-cal. Okay, I know this isn't a "political" blog, but it's impossible to blatantly ignore the fact that there's an election coming in 2020, and that candidates are gearing up in a big way. I'm not here to tell you who to vote for (I'm happy to share my pick closer to election day), but I personally found this New York Times guide, where they ask 18 hot topic questions of the 21 Democratic candidates to be helpful. It breaks down big issues in a digestive way. I hope you find it useful too!


Aaaaand just in case you're not quite ready to make any 2020 decisions, may I present The Happy Newsletter. Just like the name suggests, it's a quarterly paper full of positive news: Cuddling is good for you! A group of rabbits is called a fluffle! Sea turtles hatched on this once trash-ridden beach in Mumbai! I suggest you sign up for their newsletter and follow them on Instagram for some happy moments, delivered to your phone. Sometimes ignorance is bliss. :) 

Have a happy Fourth! Selfish ask: I have no set plans, and would love to be inspired by yours! What are you doing this holiday weekend? Let me know in the comments below!

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