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What Our Team Loved in April

A monthly series, corralling the various food, products, and entertainment we're currently enjoying.

It's no secret that our household takes cocktail hour very seriously. So when my dad recently sent us this new citrus juicer, which purports to squeeze out about 20% more juice than similar products, I was initially skeptical that it would actually elevate our margarita game as much as it has. I was truly shocked when I poured my drink from the shaker to find that the additional lime juice filled my glass to the brim


Two things I love right now: Candles and a low-effort projects (I'm still working my way up to the tie-dye craze!). Siblings, which I first saw on @eacourts' beautiful Instagram, are an all-in-one candle kit that make the process so much easier. Just microwave the bag to melt the wax, then pour it into the vessel of your choice. I used an old Byredo jar, which is probably cheating, but looks great! I've only tried Scent 01 but love it. 


Even before sheltering-in-place, I spent a lot of time in my kitchen, though you might not know how much I enjoy cooking from the total hodgepodge of pots and pans I own. I've invested in two cast iron skillets and a Staub Dutch oven, but had been eyeing nearly every product on Great Jones' website for years. Their selection feels like cookware porn: jewel tones, mixed metals, and grey ceramic (that's free of chemicals and Teflon). I recently got my hands on a Dutchess (in Salt), the Large Fry (their skillet that's already been put to good use), and the Saucy (that's cooked brothy beans, mac and cheese, and the orecchiette pasta that G and Emily used to bring to the office for lunch). They're excellent, and look chic enough to leave out on my stove. 


I've been experimenting with a gluten free diet for the last few months, and this pasta is the best thing to come out of it thus far (Annie's Rice Pasta Shells & White Cheddar is a close, close second though). It's not even exactly fair to call it "pasta"–other than its cute rotini shape, this food bears absolutely no resemblance to the pasta we all know and love. It's made from lentils, sweet potatoes, beets, and carrots–and that's it. If you're the kind of person who needs to trick themselves into eating more vegetables, this delicious "pasta" imposter might be for you.


For someone who burns through candles at the rate I do, it's really saying something when one stands out from the rest. And though it's still hard for me to single one out as my absolute favorite, I've especially been loving this Modern Theory White Tea and Ginger one lately. With middle notes of citrus and a warm, woody base, this candle not only helps me unwind from the workday, it also serves as a much needed reminder that it's peak springtime outside! Hard to believe, I know. Whether you're looking for a bright and refreshing midday burn, or something cozy for a family movie night curled up on the couch, this is the scent for you. 


While I'm likely to choose savory nine times out of ten, I usually enjoy ending my meals with something sweet, often in the form of dark chocolate. Lately though, I have been on a real date kick and Joolies are by far the best I've had stateside (the ones I ate by the hand full during my semester abroad in Jerusalem are my gold standard!!). From the rich, pesticide-free Coachella Valley soil down to the packaging, Joolies makes a thoughtful effort to be as ethically and sustainably minded as possible. Pro-tip: Remember this delicious spread from what feels like a lifetime ago? Aishwarya, the founder of Brightland and fellow date lover, surprised us all by dousing a plate of Joolies dates with Alive, letting the oil soak into the fruit for a few minutes before eating. No exaggeration, it was one of the best bites of food I've enjoyed maybe ever. It might sound a little funky, but seriously try it!


I almost don't want to let this secret out, but my recent obsession with ribbed loungewear led me on a very deep rabbit hole that ended with the Los Angeles-based brand, Lett Clothing. It's reasonably priced, and I was able to find the exact ribbed, cream-colored pants I was looking for along with this ballet wrap in black which I plan on layering over my quarantine uniform (black leggings and a sports bra). On a similar note, I also love the idea of this brand, which is transparent about their supplier so you can get a sweater made by the same manufacturer as Sandro or a candle from the same scent maker as Le Labo with transparent pricing.


I've been slowly making my way, chronologically, through the films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (loved Captain America from the outset, didn't warm up to Tony Stark until Iron Man 3) as I'd never seen a single one before quarantine. I'm currently 12 movies deep (halfway there!), and while everyone mentioned that Guardians of the Galaxy is the magnum opus of MCU, none of the others stuck with me like Captain Marvel. I was noticeably emotional throughout the movie, and when the credits started to roll, I welled up. Thinking about the impact that watching a brave, powerful, perfectly imperfect female superhero could have had on me as a girl was overwhelming. I've always claimed that I "fundamentally dislike superhero movies" (with the exception of the Christopher Nolan Batman trilogy), but Captain Marvel reoriented my perspective. Brie Larson is a force to be reckoned with, and I'm already counting down the days until part two is released. 


Leslie mentioned The Heart's Invisible Furies in this post we wrote last month about binge-able books to read right now, and of course I immediately bought it. It took me about a full week to read, but WOW was it worth it! I pretty rarely give out a 10/10, but this book absolutely deserved it. The Heart's Invisible Furies follows the life of Cyril Avery, a gay man born in Ireland who grew up in a time when homosexuality was considered a crime. Told in seven year increments, we follow Cyril's story and all the twists and turns it takes from 1945-2015. I laughed, I cried, I gasped, and I was completely invested in this book from start to finish. An absolute masterpiece!!

package free

I've been making a point to be more intentional in my spending habits in an effort to reduce my daily waste output and "decarbonize" my life to the extent that I am presently able. A few weeks ago, I came across Package Free Shop, my new favorite online resource for connecting, learning, and contemplating whether or not biodegradable glitter is a want or a need. Founded in 2017 by the incredibly cool Lauren Singer, a pioneer of the Zero Waste movement and creator of the editorial platform, Trash is For Tossers, everything on Package Free is sourced from individuals and brands that are both sustainable in mission, accessible in pricing, and of course, package free! Last week, in honor of a solid Earth Day sale and the fact that I was running low on several everyday essentials, I finally pulled the trigger on a few products I'd been eyeing: A shampoo bar (tbd what happens here!) and yes, the glitter. Reducing waste shouldn't mean a life devoid of some sparkle, right?!

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