Remember that time when I felt confident in my ability to overcome any 'roach problem I may face here in the concrete jungle?  I hearken back to my first post, written a little over 2 years ago.  Well, many things have changed since then.  I graduated college, performed Shakespeare, booked jobs, quit jobs, built a sizable resume, was hired on in a full-time capacity at an off-broadway show, and, apparently somewhere along the way, lost my ability to conquer 'roaches in any situation.  Even dead ones.  Let me elucidate.

It's 12.45am.  It's been a long, exciting, fulfilling day off, and I am ready to get some shut eye.  I settle down on my lovely, new, queen size bed and, of course, CAN'T fall asleep.  I toss and turn.  Stry gets up, gives me a back massage, goes to eat, snuggles some more, then wanders off.  I toss and turn a little more.  Fluff my pillow.  Look out the window.  My eyes find their way down to my compilation of Shakespeare's plays in my window sill.  How long have I left that there, I wonder.  Then, from the glow of outside light gleaming into my darkened abode, I see something that SHOULD. NOT. BE.  I hastily reach for my light, but, alas! It's unplugged!  I leap off my bed and race for the light switch.  

At that moment, I hear Strider vomiting in the bathroom.  Torn between going to help and comfort my little love and confirming in the unforgiving light that which I know is lurking on the window sill, of course I go to Stry.  After cleaning up the floor and comforting my boy, the moment has come.  I dash to my bedroom and vault onto the covers, scrambling over the pillows to face my enemy.  A Giant. Ugly. Long Limbed. Possiblyatonepointflyingbuthopefullynowdead. Devil in squirm-inducing form.  Yes, dear readers.  A cockroach.  When was the last time I met a nefarious foe of this ilk? Too recently, dear readers.  Too. Recently.  

Pretty sure (but not QUITE sure enough), the beast was dead, I hasten to the kitchen to retrieve my handy-dandy dust-buster, thinking to suck the intruder up.  But, AH! It's TOO BIG! Too. Big.  What to do?  My mind flips through all the various people I could call for help.   Friend's in the city? Won't get here fast enough. Strider? The furry little cutie already failed in protecting me once. Rebekah? She'd be freaked out, too.  Boyfriend? Don't have one.  Mom? .....  

So yes, dear readers, as you may have guessed, I called good ol' mom.  Very good ol' mom in this case, because not only did I wake her up (sorry about that), but when I tried to let her go back to bed, she asked if I wanted her to stay on the line while I dealt with the bugbear.  (Which, of course, I did :)

9 minutes, folks.  9. Minutes.  That's how long it took me to get the brown/black bug from the windowsill to the toilet, to be flushed away for(hopefully)ever.

And that is why I am writing this (long overdue) post, at 1.48am.  Because, even though I've dragged my bed to be an island in the middle of the bedroom, I'm horrified about what might go crawling in the night.  I'm grossed out, because I'm SURE that dark specter had its creepy legs ALL OVER my pillows and blankets.  I'm exhausted because I just had a fright and adrenaline coursing through my body for the third time today.  

But can we just take a moment to appreciate that every time Stry throws up, an evil, giant bug does NOT decide to appear? Anyone?  Just me...?
A few months ago, I wanted spaghetti and realized I was out of sauce! Gasp! Horror! Instead of dashing out to spend money on a jar of delicious red gloop, I looked at the ingredients I had laying around and decided to try making my own sauce.  Ambitious, right?

Turns out, it was super easy and completely delicious! Not to mention affordable and provides plenty of variations - you can add meat, mushrooms, onions, different spices, the list is practically endless!  I'm still tweaking the recipe, and doubt I'll make it the same way every time, but for now this is a delicious, solid pasta sauce.  You could add some citric acid to help it keep, but I find it lasts at least a week in the  'fridge just fine, and it rarely lasts that long anyway (have I mentioned how much I love pasta, esp. now that I can get it all GF?).





Last week I found out I'd been rejected for the lottery housing I'd been in the running for since August last year.  Major bummer.  I really thought I'd get this awesome and affordable 1 bedroom in a brand new luxury building in my same neighborhood and I'd be set for my future here in NYC.  Hah.  Silly Julia.  

When I found out, I was pretty upset - I'm not sure "devastated" is quite the word, but definitely crushed.  Suddenly, I found myself reeling under a tidal wave of confusion about what I'm even doing with my life. I dub those 32ish hours my Quarter Life Crisis.  

I am so thankful for my friends that I chatted with at length; their input and sharing really helped me come to terms with my situation and feelings of confusion/over-whelmedness over this crazy little thing called Life.  

I also discovered (much to my chagrin), I can't do everything.  GASP! WAH?! I know.  It surprised me, too.  I've always been Ms. Multi-tasker, taking on everything all at once.  Well, I realized this week that I don't NEED to tackle my projects in one fell swoop; and, in fact, I've been needlessly over-stressing myself by doing just that.  Let me elucidate.

This week, I'm taking on a slightly higher position at work - filling in for a woman who's on vacation.  It involves a lot of detail, and I've been super nervous about the whole thing, but also very excited.  I also found out I didn't get the lottery housing and (for some reason) decided I needed to 1. Find an apartment and 2. Move in by April.  What?!  Instead of focusing on my top priority (successfully filling in at work), I was pulling myself in all sorts of crazy directions and getting engulfed by the stress.  Thankfully, the night before I took over, I got my head on straight. 

I realized it's OK not to cram my life trying to do everything all at once.  I'm the one putting these ridiculous pressures on myself - and needlessly!  Something that's come up frequently the past several week is that "busy" isn't necessarily good OR productive.  I can't begin to describe how true I've found this to be! 

 I'm endeavoring to give myself grace and peace, and not worry about everything all at once.  I found this picture on pinterest, and found it incredibly apt for
Ladies and Gentlemen, we have a winner! Congratulations to Jessica Menn Anderson! She will receive her very own 8x10 Canvas Print from PrintCopia!

I used to select a number 1-11 (the number of people who entered the contest) and it chose lucky number 7. Thank you all who entered.  I'd love to do more of these things, so be sure to check back!

As you may already know, my awesome cousin, Jenna, has her own blog which I love to follow.  I love seeing her daughter growing up and reading all about the latest kitchen experiments.  If you haven't already, be sure to check her out here:

"What does this have to do with me?", you may be wondering.  Well, Jenna recently did a canvas print giveaway, which I entered.  I didn't win, but a few weeks ago, I got an email from someone at saying Jenna had referred them to me and would I like to review them on my blog and do my own give away? "Absolutely!"  

Ever since getting my hand run over, I haven't been cooking or baking much of anything.  In fact, I was physically unable to do a myriad of everyday tasks I've grown accustomed to over the past 23years.  This was frustrating for many reasons, not the least of which is I'd just bought a bunch of new dishes and was super excited to use them!

A week and a half after my accident, I rolled out of bed and decided to make brownies to take to work.  It was the first recipe I'd made since my hand got smushed, and I'd actually never before made brownies from scratch. 

I started with this "Fudgy Brownies" recipe from All Recipes (something I'd pinned ages ago on my pinterest). Based on reading the comments, I tweaked the recipe a bit.  While the ensuing result wasn't particularly "fudgey" to me, it was incredibly delicious, and I think more of a fudge quality could easily be achieved with some added ingredients.

I can't claim this year hasn't started with a bang! I'm proud I've spent this whole first month living up to my word for the year - New.  I learned to throw knives, am working a steady job that I love, learning office skills, doing aerial silks, I even got run over by a car! Wait. What?




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I had a jarring realization the other day.  I was shocked and angry when my eyes were opened to the truth of something I had allow happen to me.  But instead of letting myself roil inside and get all eaten up about it, I took a step back to see where I had gone wrong; how I had let myself get this way

If I had a defining phrase describing my childhood, it would be "I'm bored."  I said it All. The. Time.  Ask my mother.  When I moved to New York, I told myself, "If you're ever bored, it's your own damn fault."

I'm 23.  It keeps hitting me in little waves of realization.  I'm 23.  I've never been this old before.  I was just 15.  What happened to those years? I look at people and am about to say, "Oh, honey..." at their antics, and then I'm like, "Oh my goodness, I'm 23 now! How weird is that?!" People always say you grow so much between 18 and 25. They were right. But now I'm closer to the 25 side of things rather than the 18.  I am almost a quarter century old, people!

This NYE was one for the memory books.