So Much to Try, So Little Time

I know that headline sounds a bit silly for someone who hasn’t traveled anywhere in over six months, but it’s true. I do have a lot here and I’m trying to give it all a fair try. Here’s what I have gotten to in May.

Just what I was looking for…
I haven’t stepped foot in a store for many months because of the coronavirus. Last week, I was looking through my stash of boxed cards and was thinking about how boring they were. I had forgotten all about what was in my “to be reviewed” cabinet.

Girl w/Knife was created by Elicia Castaldi. The designer mixes beautiful creations with interesting messages for all occasions. They all have an obvious feminine touch, so they are perfect to or from women.

The beautiful cards are very reasonably priced at $5 each. Girl w/Knife also sells journals, wrapping paper, and notepads. Everything is available in stores around the world and you can also purchase them online on their website.  

An ethnic variety in this cookbook…
With part of my heritage in Jewish-style cooking, I was intrigued by Deep Flavors: A celebration of recipes for foodies in a Kosher style. The book, by Kenneth M. Horwitz, is filled with ethnic recipes with what he calls, “essential, high quality and fresh ingredients” not “dumbed-down recipes.”

This is where the quandary comes in. You are not going to fight quick and easy recipes in this book. You are going to find ingredients you need to shop for, and multiple steps to get things on your plate. You’ll also find these are not the healthiest, especially with chicken schmaltz (basically cooked chicken fat) as an often-used ingredient.

 Given my cooking background, I can’t disagree with the way Horwitz presents these recipes. It is the way to make these things to their ultimate taste.  The book is thorough in its details of food safety, selecting ingredients, making sauces, ad everything from soups to desserts.

If you are looking for authentic Jewish cooking, such as Noodle Kugel, Meat Kreplach, and Matzoh Balls, this is the way to get the right instructions. You’ll also find recipes for other ethnic foods, like Moroccan Stew, Baklava, and one of my favorites, Baba Ghanoush.

Healthy options…
I’m just getting started with the box full I received from Plant Junkie. My first sampling was of their Avocado Oil Spread & Dressing. I am quite impressed. In fact, I have been reaching for it everyday (it was perfect in my chicken salad).

This mayonnaise substitute is completely plant based, is low in sodium and saturated fat (only 1 g) and has no sugar. Avocado oil is the number one ingredient. You can purchase it right on Amazon.

I have a bunch of dressings from Plant Junkie I’ll be sampling in the next month.


Cheers to this vodka…
I receive a lot of vodka. I don’t write about the ones I don’t like and, quite frankly, I’ve been refusing to sample some because there’s just so much out there. Headwind Vodka had some unique characteristics that caught my interest.

This vodka is created in the Pacific Northwest, specifically Oregon. It recently won the Gold Medal in the World Spirits Competition. It’s uniquely crafted, with a gluten-free grain (corn), distilled six times and filtered twice with pure, local water.

This vodka is made even more fascinating by the fact that they don’t strive to make each bottle the same. The goal is to make each bottle unique. My bottle is from Batch No. 1 and is No. 7615, bottled 6/24/19, according to the label, which is made with birchwood.

Headwind is light and slightly sweet from the corn, with a smooth finish that has a touch of vanilla. It’s easy to drink, even straight. At $21.99, it’s a good buy.

A great start…
I’m not usually a fan of sheet masks. Obviously, we all have different shaped faces, so they aren’t going to ever fit right. I did have to change my tune after using VitaBrid Dual Mask.

My daughter actually gave me a few items to check out from them. I picked up the mask one day last week when my face seemed especially dull. Right away I was impressed with how creamy it felt. The other thing I loved about it is that you don’t wash it off, you rub it in (after 20 min with the sheet on). That way I was able to cover any areas the mask didn’t originally touch.

My skin was definitely softer, brighter, and a little firmer. I’m looking forward to trying the other VitaBrid products. You can purchase the mask here.


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