Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas to all who celebrate! I am not the most religious person, but I like to think of it as a joyful day where good karma gets passed around. Plus, it is a great excuse to listen to croony old Christmas carols. Will you judge me if my Pandora is still churning out the holiday tunes after the New Year?

School is done until the end of next month! I am happy with my progress and can not wait for final grades to be released. Although…there is an A- that is hanging over my shoulders and I need to see the end result as soon as possible.

Without further ado, I just wanted to show off some big and little things received for Christmas/happy really late birthday/good job in school.

Could not find a Christmas hat in time, so the 49ers beanie had to make do! This picture was actually taken on Saturday right before Taylor and I did last minute Christmas shopping (more about that on Friday).

You probably saw this picture on my Instagram already, but if you do not have me added, here it is!

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Can we talk abut my new KitchenAid?! I am the most excited girl in the whole world. I still have not taken it out of the box due to how perfect and beautiful it is. If possible, please link up your favorite recipes that need a stand mixer so I can feel like a 50s housewife. My new kitchenaid matches my Urban Kitchen perfectly.

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My sister is the sneakiest snake and surprised me with this complete collection of all of Thomas Keller’s Napa creations. The books are heavier than the KitchenAid! Friends, you are in for a real recipe treat when I get the courage to take the books out of the plastic.

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Anyone that knows me in real life knows that I have been talking non-stop about this food grinder attachment. I even obsessed over it on my Holiday Gift Guide for Food Lovers, which looking back might have been a subconscious wish list of my own thoughts. I think it is pretty funny how I wanted this before I even found out I was getting a KitchenAid.

Ground meat and from-scratch pizzas from here on out, mark my words.

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Isn’t this teapot a beauty? She is made from cast-iron and will come out only on special occasions. I was just telling my friend the other day that I wanted to start drinking more tea, this could not of come at a more perfect time.

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And finally, the award for the most thoughtful gift goes to my patient, Bob! He goes to NYC once every two months because he loves the jazz clubs and the vibe of the concrete jungle. We have gotten to know each other for over five years now, so he feels more like family than just a patient. He just came back from another trip and dropped off a little care package on Saturday for me because I told him that I was going in mid-Jan. He included his favorite jazz clubs, a subway map “that always works even when cellphone don’t”, a Metrocard with the cutest little cardholder, t-shirt and a magazine of fun things to do.

Although it was all small things, I almost teared up because of the sincerity; thinking about it again makes me happy.

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Merry Christmas everyone! I hope you got everything you wanted plus more. I am just relaxing with family for the day and will see you on Friday. 🙂

What cool things did you get?

If you don’t celebrate Christmas, what are your NYE plans?

Holiday Gift Guide For The Food Lover In Your Life

I am a bad blogger this month, shame on me. I use to never skip days because I loved having my calendar perfect every MWF, but after traveling in the summer, a snowball effect has occurred.

Fear not, my last final is next Thursday and after that I will come equipped with all things food. I also kind of miss over-sharing my life with you.

This is my first year blogging and I have always wanted to do one of these guides. There are so many different styles and personalities so gift guides for ‘your best friend’ or ‘hunky man’ are out of the question for me. It also does not help that I am the worst shopper for people who I am close with.

However, food I know and food I love. And today is Friday! Score for me, because I managed to get two Friday Five’s in a role. Today is a good day.

Because I am a law abiding citizen, I am informing you that I signed up for affiliate links today from Amazon because I just had to pay the yearly fee for hosting. If anyone purchases the items from Amazon I link, I get pennies on the dollar so do not side-eye me and think I am shelling out! Mama has to make a little somehow. 😉

Five Things To Get The Food Lover In Your Life

Or me, because that would be lovely. Or at least show me a picture of what food related items you got so we can bond over them.

1. Personalized State Cutting Board

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How awesome are these cutting boards?! I see how some states might work better than others (cough Colorado vs. Hawaii), but this gift is practical and also a little unique compared to what you might normally find in your local mall.There are cheaper versions but I really like AHeirloom’s brand. All the boards are an inch thick and made with love from a married couple in Brooklyn, NY.

PS: Does anyone shop at malls anymore or is everyone doing their ordering online this year?

2. Kitchenaid Food Grinder

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Most home cooks or married couples (who put it on their registry) have this coveted piece of kitchen machinery and use it a few times to make cookies and bread before storing it away in the cobwebbed cabinet for infinity and beyond. This food grinder brings a whole new twist for the stand mixer and kicks it up to a whole ‘nother level. I hate eating ground chuck from grocery stores because of all the horror stories I have heard in my class; I can not imagine anything more satisfying than grinding your own meat.

Conversely, you can be a person like me and say a prayer to the cooking gods every night hoping a Kitchenaid makes its way to your doorstep the next morning. It has not happened yet so maybe I need to try harder.

3. A Thomas Keller Cookbook

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Maybe it is because I have a school-girl crush on my food idol or the fact that I got to meet him a few months ago, but this would be a wonderful gift and I will be happy to mail you my address if you care to send me one (just kidding, really). One of the houses I nanny for has Ad Hoc at Home and the pictures are visually stunning and it looks great in the kitchen. I almost thought to put it on the coffee table but that is just silly.

4. Vinturi Essential Wine Aerator

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I came to the conclusion that anyone that loves food loves wine as well, so this would be an awesome gift! The Vinturi aerator looks fancy and will make you seem like a wine connoisseur when your guest come over to eat your (freshly ground) home made meatballs, recipe adapted from Thomas Keller’s cooking book, while graze on cheese served on your new state cutting board.

Wow, I am good.

5. A gift certificate to your favorite gourmet restaurant.

I am not talking about the Olive Garden. If you live in a foodie city, this is the perfect gift to help your friends expand horizons. A lot of higher-end restaurants will have these available and make them quite nice to look at. A few years ago, I received one to Gary Danko for my birthday and I probably would not of thought of going without the kind gesture. Chances are you will become their new bff or they will spend it all at the bar. Win, win.

Last week’s Friday Five: The Five Best Christmas Songs Of All Time

And that’s it! I have about a million more ideas but this is a good start. This year I made it clear to everyone that I will be nice and cheap and just want slippers for Christmas. With my luck, I will end up with about 35 different pairs.

What are good gifts idea I can get my friends? I am absolutely clueless.

What do you realllllly want for the holidays? (I am trying to be politically correct).