Helping those affected by the fires in California. These fires are devastating. No other way to say it. Here are a few ways you can help:
1) The California Fire Foundation has a program called Supplying Aid to Victims of Emergency (SAVE) that distributes $100 gift cards to victims at the scene of disasters as a form of immediate aid for those who have lost everything and may not have access to food/shelter/water/medicine. You can make a donation to the SAVE program here.
2) Direct Relief is bringing oxygen concentrators, medicine, and thousands of respirators to the firezones in California. 100% of any donations you make will go toward supporting these efforts. You can donate to Direct Relief here.
3) The North Valley Animal Disaster Group is working to move affected animals to safe spaces, provide veterinary care, feed and water animals, and reconnect animals with their families if they’ve been separated. You can donate to NVADG here.
4) In the long term, I suggest figuring out who your local US House Representative is and calling them to make sure they’re fighting for legislation that acknowledges, addresses, and combats climate change. If you live in California but aren’t sure who your representative is, this helpful Wikipedia map has them all listed along with a map of each district.
Salt, Fat, Acid Heat, the show. I loved Samin Nosrat’s book Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat. I remember spending at least 4 days pouring over every detail in the salt chapter alone. When I heard Netflix was making it a show, I was thrilled but had no clue what to expect. The book is very informative & encyclopedia like - - how would it translate to a show? Great news: Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat the show is super different from the book, but it’s just as great. Samin Nosrat travels to four countries to explore the four basic elements of cooking, and she is SO ENGAGING. It feels like 99% of all food shows star white men, and when they also involve travel it can get sooooooooo patronizing/colonizing/judgey. It’s a gulp of fresh air to watch a woman of color travel the globe seeking and genuinely enjoying great food. She asks questions, actually listens to the answers, and is incredibly respectful of everyone she encounters. No asking them to justify what they do, no balking at how “other” the food is, no “this isn’t even that spicy”, no “I can probably make this better”. It’s a joy. Go watch it. (I also loved this New York Times Magazine article she wrote about learning to taste candy as if it’s a fancy, serious food.)
The Seasons Perfume Oil Collection by Rosie Jane ($50). My Best Friend With Stellar Taste™ gave me this set of perfumes for my birthday, and I am SO OBSESSED. Each smells like a different season, and they mix/match/layer beautifully. The fragrance is light, the application is easy, and I love the tiny bottles because they fit so easily into my makeup bag when I’m traveling. Right now I’m wearing the daylights out of James, which smells like fig, amber, and a whole lot of autumnal goodness.
The reboot of Serial. The newest season of everyone’s OG favorite podcast revolves around the day-in, day-out goings on of a courthouse in Cleveland. It casts a harsh light on how cases (and more importantly, people) are moved through our justice system. You quickly learn this court isn’t about justice…more about getting through as many cases as possible, as quickly as possible, with depressingly little regard for humanity. Deeply illuminating, deeply heartbreaking.
This tiny, $2 blue floral bowl that I got at Fleur in Chicago. Since I got engaged I’ve been totally paranoid about getting my ring dirty, so I’ve been taking it off for everything: washing dishes, cooking, doing laundry, cleaning. This means I keep forgetting where I left it, which has lead to a couple of near heart-attacks 😂 I clearly needed a few strategically placed trinket dishes: one in the bathroom, one in the kitchen, one for my bedside. I found this bowl at Fleur for $2.95, and I’m sure it’s supposed to be a vessel for dipping sauce but OH WHALE I LOVE IT. The rose gold in my ring looks so pretty on the blue.
Soul Cycle. I know, I know, I knooooooooow. You already have a friend who will NOT stop talking your ear off about how Soul Cycle has brought them joy/transformed their body/given them a new lease on life/fixed all their problems. DUDE, LISTEN TO THAT FRIEND. I gave Soul Cycle a shot earlier this year, and I can’t say enough good things about it. I’ve struggled to find a cardio workout that I can stand my entire adult life. (Running? Barf. Kick boxing? SO FUN, but my knees can’t take it. Swimming? Sure, but what pool can I afford consistent access to?) Soul Cycle has been perfect for me for a few reasons: 1) it’s low on direct knee-impact, 2) it’s mostly in the dark so you don’t feel embarrassed if you can’t keep up, and 3) it is 1,000% musically driven, and as we all know, music motivates everything in my life. It’s so much fun. The instructors are incredible, and the ones I take consistently are the nicest, most genuine people. It’s ridiculously expensive, so I have to watch my intake - but holy shit, is it $30 well spent!