Recent Posts

2125

How do you celebrate birthdays that fall on, or close to, holidays?

We welcomed our sweet baby boy in to the world last year on Christmas Eve. My husband's birthday is the 28th, so he's not a stranger to being forgotten at Christmas time. But in this Pinterest-crazed day and age, I feel kind of put-out that we won't be able to have big birthday celebrations, as almost everyone will be busy with Christmas festivities. Any suggestions?

Recent Home

1228

I have Katniss scratch fever: How do I learn to shoot stuff?

Homies, I'd like to learn to shoot stuff. Targets, mostly. Maybe with guns, maybe with arrows — honestly, I'm flexible, and I don't have any solid goals for these skills — it just looks like fun and seems like a good thing to know how to do (in case, you know, zombies). But I have no idea where to start.

341

The no-kill Christmas tree

My mom does not like cutting down trees, so she refuses to do traditional Christmas trees. She also hates plasticky stuff, so no fake trees. She's since developed a perfect no-kill Christmas tree. It's conical! It's solid! It smells delicious! Here's how she does it.

332

How do you ask your friend to clean-up when you visit?

My best friend lives 5½ hours away and we love to visit. Every time we visit, though, the house is a complete disaster. I don't know how to approach her about this because I am not comfortable staying there anymore unless it's cleaned up. I love her like a sister, we've been friends for 12 years, and I don't want to stop visiting. But I don't want a fight because we have different priorities. Anyone have advice on how I can broach the possibly-sensitive question of asking her to clean up before I visit?

176

The tiny, colorful studio apartment, that taught me a lot about who I am

Before moving here, I was living in a larger studio with my husband, but moving into this place alone I had to be even more choosy about what came with and what did not. This home has taught me a lot about who I am. I had been in a very codependent relationship, so it had been a long time since I had only needed to worry about myself. Being able to express myself through my space was instrumental in my journey to finding my own identity after I left.

Recent Life

2125

How do you celebrate birthdays that fall on, or close to, holidays?

We welcomed our sweet baby boy in to the world last year on Christmas Eve. My husband's birthday is the 28th, so he's not a stranger to being forgotten at Christmas time. But in this Pinterest-crazed day and age, I feel kind of put-out that we won't be able to have big birthday celebrations, as almost everyone will be busy with Christmas festivities. Any suggestions?

317

De-stressing the holidays: Ditching traffic, fake smiles, and our parents

I love the holidays. I love the food, the family, and the general festive atmosphere. I hate the stress though. Add to this that my career choice primarily involves dealing with difficult people and that the holiday season is THE busiest time of year for those kinds of jobs (read: retail and waiting tables), the stress of the holidays is almost more than I can handle. Then I started thinking about what the holidays meant when I was growing up…

484

What to do when people ask, "So what gift do you want from me?"

Getting presents can sometimes be comparatively unrewarding — especially now I'm at an age where family still want to give me birthday and Christmas presents, but aren't quite sure what to get. Therefore they ask me what I would like. I used to feel this took a lot of the fun out of it, but now I've realized that I can get all meta about it. What I'm really doing, I've decided, is giving them the gift of giving. So here are my tips for when someone asks you for a list of present ideas.

Recent Food

358

No-bake oatmeal protein bites

Looking for a healthy snack that even picky people and kids will love? These are so yummy and take zero time to prepare. Best of all, they're a great source of protein, fiber and good fats and weigh in at only 85 calories!

143

Keeping it classy with a wine jelly recipe from 1896

This may sound extravagant, but this wine jelly recipe published in 1896 was originally intended for those with very little appetite or who had difficulty keeping more substantial foods down. Wine jelly is tasty on top of toast, biscuits, roast beef, turkey, spooned from shot glasses, squeezed from paper cups, and licked from spoons. It's not overly sweet, and it keeps in the fridge for months. It's simple to make, but will take some planning…

96

Old fashion chicken and noodle soup without the work

I love cooking, but I'm also a graduate student in the tiniest of apartments. Neither of which are conducive to homemade meals. On the other hand, canned soups tend to have too much sodium for me. I have finally found a recipe that not only tastes amazing, but requires very little work.

Recent People

1416

Help! My roommate is SUPER loud while doin' it

My roommate keeps having loud crazy monkey sex when I'm wide awake and in the next room. One friend of mine said I just need to get better headphones, and another friend of mine said that she is being totally inconsiderate, and that there are rules with the roommate-having while boning. What are the rules? How does everyone else deal with this issue?

573

Tattoos, photo shoots, and lessons learned since my marriage ended

It was such an exciting time in my life, getting engaged, planning my amazing offbeat wedding and enjoying the day. Then I was thrown a curveball a year and three months after our wedding date… My husband came home and told me he wanted a divorce. The thing is, I have learned so many valuable lessons from this experience, ones that I would not have had the opportunity to learn if life had not unfolded this way.

500

On being raised as a "small person" instead of being "treated like a child"

The idea that a child was a child and nothing more was never really perpetuated in my home. I never felt that there was a role that I was assigned to or an expectation that I had to meet. Growing up I began to see that my parents had a far more interesting approach to raising me than I realized. I wasn't treated as a child growing up. I was treated like a person… a small person.

Recent Pets

95

How to prepare raw dog food at home

Before we continue, two things: One, I am not a veterinarian. This is simply what has worked for us and our pup. Two, we are about to talk about poop. LOTS OF POOP. If you're eating a tasty burrito, maybe set it down 'til we're done.

558

How do you approach a neighbor about their dog's barking?

My husband and I have no relationship with the people in the apartment next to mine, other than smiling at each other on the elevator, and so we're at a bit of a loss about how to approach them about their dog's barking. As far as we've been told, our building doesn't allow dogs. How can we bring it up without creating a negative relationship right from the get-go?

Recent Do It Yourself

341

The no-kill Christmas tree

My mom does not like cutting down trees, so she refuses to do traditional Christmas trees. She also hates plasticky stuff, so no fake trees. She's since developed a perfect no-kill Christmas tree. It's conical! It's solid! It smells delicious! Here's how she does it.

81

How to make giant 10-sided dice

I present to you my tutorial for making giant d10 (because the giant d20 didn't work out so well — the pattern is far more complicated and didn't really work with the thick cardboard). If you have questions, feel free to ask 'em in the comments.

Recent Shopping

1085

How the color-depositing conditioners of oVertone changed my hair routine forever

Remember when I introduced you to our sponsor oVertone? It's the vegan, and cruelty free color-depositing conditioners that comes in six different colors. The ladies of the Empire were so stoked on this product that we forced them to send us conditioners in all our various colors. Let's talk more about what happened when the ladies behind oVertone hooked up the ladies of the Empire with their awesome color-depositing conditioners…

547

14 gifts for dapper, artistic types that will make even the hipster-iest hipster excited

I got this request via Twitter: "Any plans to do a gift guide for the dapper artsy-type people in our lives? I'm totally stumped for my brother-in-law and could use some ideas." My response: "I suspect he may be suffering from hipsterism. But it's okay! I can help." Forget skinny jeans and slouchy beanies, these gifts will make even the pickiest hipster say, "okay, yeah, that's totally me"…

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