February 2018 Favourites

A week without my laptop has meant a slight delay in my February favourites. A short list for a short month.

◌ In Netflix viewing, Dirty Money and Seeing Allred are both must-watches. I watched the first episode of Flint Town on the train and if it is anything to go by, it looks to be crucial (though harrowing) viewing as well.

◌ Bill Gates trying to guess how much groceries cost. Oh dear.

◌ Worth reading: Audre Lorde on fear.

◌ Two excellent post-2010 (the year austerity was introduced as a dominant ideological policy-making/governance paradigm) books on Britain: one fiction, Home Fire and one non-fiction, The Good Immigrant. These two books represent some of the best written accounts (that I have read) of what it’s like to live in England in 2018.

Get Out was creepy. But enjoyable.

This is old, but too lovely/on point not to share.



January 2018 Favourites

Happy February, everyone. Here’s a list of some internet/life highlights from the past two months.

◌ Emily St John Mandel’s year in reading (2017).

◌ Nachos (in my top 10 favourite foods!) 15 ways.

Books out in the first half of 2018.

◌ TV: Enjoyed Alias Grace, season 2 of The Crown, & I’m currently watching and liking McMafia.

◌ Inspiring: what did you learn in 2017?

◌ Barkskins and Everybody’s Fool got me out of my fiction slump.

◌ I haven’t made anything from Sweet yet, but I’d better double check before I do…

◌ 20 ides for winter salads.

◌ H. & I really enjoyed The Post and Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri.


November 2017 Favourites

Where has 2017 gone? Happy December! I’m counting down the days until my Christmas holidays — cannot wait. It has been a very busy and exhausting semester. Here are my favourites for this month.

◌ H. & I are a bit behind on Blue Planet 2, but it’s extraordinary. So good it seems CGI’ed.

Someone Knows Something  released a third season. I’m not exaggerating when I say David Ridgen is, I think, the best podcasting journalist I’ve heard. Season 2 blew me away, and season 3 is very good as well.

◌ The best books of 2017 according to the Globe and Mail and New York Times. I’ve read so few.

◌ We bought tickets to Labour of Love ages ago and finally the weekend came around. Tamsin Grieg and Martin Freeman were fantastic, particularly Grieg. We laughed a lot.

◌ Currently reading and enjoying Springsteen’s Born to Run.

Detectorists is back. We love this quiet, modest show.

◌ I’ve had many nights this past month where I have barely known my own name, let alone had the brain capacity to engage with anything cerebral. Teaching 5 hours of university classes a day will do that to you. I’ve found the perfect Netflix show for this: Highway thru Hell. I love it. It’s about the tow trick industry in BC and Alberta.

◌ November favourites in 20112012201320152016

This month’s quote, because the world is kind of chaotic right now:

The real things haven’t changed. It is still best to be honest and truthful; to make the most of what we have; to be happy with simple pleasures; and have courage when things go wrong.

Laura Ingalls Wilder

October 2017 Favourites

I’m a few days late with this. This fall just keeps getting busier and busier, with no prospect of easing up until Christmas vacation. Here are few of my favourite things this month…

◌ Beg, borrow or steal someone’s Netflix account to watch The Keepers. This series absolutely floored me. It’s very, very difficult subject matter but so well done and so important to watch.

Kay’s fudge.

Five books to make you less stupid about the (American) civil war.

◌ I’ve read some highly readable and recommended books on extremely heavy and difficult topics lately. Jon Krakauer’s Missoula and Lori Shenher’s That Lonely Section of Hell are not perfect books by any means, but they both shed a lot of light on processes that are generally kept hidden.

◌ Something a bit less serious: the art of the dinner party.

◌ The podcast Dirty John completely engrossed me. Storytelling at its best.

◌ Love Frances McDormand.

It’s impossible to watch this without a smile on your face.

September 2017 Favourites

Happy October! (a few days late) A few links for this month.

TIFF highlights.

NYT‘s most famous comment explained. I remember reading about this when it first appeared! Love it.

Books coming out this month.

◌ Really like this, on the difference between pleasure and happiness.

◌ Highlights of fall TV, according to the Atlantic.

◌ Speaking of which: I’m one month back into commuting life, so I’ve been consuming more TV than usual. H & I loved Ozark. We’re also halfway through season 3 of Narcos — recommended. Finally, HBO’s Big Little Lies was fantastic.

◌ Loved Michael Crummey’s The Wreckage.

◌ I’ve always wanted to visit Winnipeg, and this makes me want to visit even more.

Thames by night


Summer 2017 Favourites

It’s back-to-school time and summer is coming to a close. I love fall, but am already missing the more relaxed pace of summer. Just a few links this time, as I haven’t been online much the past couple of weeks. Happy September, everyone.

◌ First things first. I read some great books this summer: The North Water, Shadow of Doubt, The Best Kind of People, The Memento.

Africa’s only female safari team. Awesome. I have been to Chobe and can attest to how amazing it is. This makes it even more so.

◌ I watched Deepwater Horizon last week and am still thinking about it.

50 best ethical beauty products, from Sali Hughes.

◌ We’re on episode 5 of Ozark (on Netflix) and are really enjoying it!

The best 500 pubs in London?

◌ Getting political and real life now: stop exploiting academics.

◌ It’s that time of year again: books coming in the second half of 2017.

◌ These might be cocktails for summer, but I’m going to carry on making them — or modified versions, without NS produce, sniff sniff — into fall.

My beautiful fur-niece!


June 2017 Favourites

Happy July, and happy belated 150th birthday to Canada! A lot has happened since my last favourites post: I turned 30, finished my first semester as a full-time lecturer, spent a week in Toronto. Now it’s summer and I am really looking forward to a slightly less chaotic two months. 🙂

One of the best pieces on Canada’s 150.

◌ The best and worst ramen in London.

◌ Recommended reading: Another Day in the Death of AmericaThe SelloutMy Life on the RoadThe Break.

◌ Diving for sea cucumbers in Alaska.

Is coffee actually good for you? (via Goop)

20 salad recipes  — just what you need when it’s above 25 in sticky London.

◌ Virginia Woolf’s novels mapped.

◌ Enjoyed Bruce Springsteen and Stella McCartney on Desert Island Discs.

◌ Summer is the time for dips.

◌ Goop’s summer reads.

Hawdraw Force waterfall, Yorkshire, May


April 2017 Favourites

Happy May! I have been trying to post this for days now, but haven’t written more than a few words a day.

This is a big month for me — I turn 30 in less than a week!

◌ Thoroughly enjoyed and recommend both Sweetland and A Room of One’s Own.

◌ Nice list of bakeries in Iceland. H. & I tried Sandholt when we were there and it was excellent.

NYT climate issue is well worth a look.

◌ Tips for ‘deep-cleaning’ your attitude (aka taking a break).

◌ Did anyone else listen to S-town? I’m conflicted …. part genius, part banal.

◌ Can’t say I have ever sought out an eel pie & mash shop in London.

◌ Started watching Schitt’s Creek on a whim, and I love it. My only gripe is that it should be set in Canada!

◌ Wedding cake trivia.

Edinburgh in spring

January 2017 Favourites

Oh man. What a start to 2017. Personally, professionally, just generally…it’s been a tough one. Here’s a big list of links to inspire.

◌ First and foremost: 2017 wine buying guide.

Instant ramen hacks from Lucky Peach.

◌ An oral history of the first flight of Syrian refugees to Canada.

2017 in publishing.

◌ The world’s best mustards.

Toni Erdmann is one of the weirdest films I’ve ever seen, but it made us laugh!

◌ This article really captivated me: My President Was Black.

No-knead bread, 10 years later.

◌ One episode into The Crown and it looks like it’s going to be good.

◌ A year in dinners. If you are short on ideas for what to cook, start here.

An African road trip.

You might want to pass on the shrimp cocktail. “We cannot trace…”

◌ 10 hotels for sale in France. Just cause.

◌ Great collection of Filipino recipes.

◌ Really interesting: self-control and empathy.



November 2016 Favourites

It’s December 1st and the falling snow has once again appeared on the blog!

◌ According to this quiz, my three dominant traits are independence, shyness, and orderliness. Replace shyness with introversion and I think it’s bang on.

◌ It’s here: NYT‘s 100 Notable Books of 2016.

◌ List of 25 casseroles. Perfect for this time of the year.

◌ Thanks to my friend D. for alerting me to the Axe Files podcast. If you’re into American politics and in-depth interviews with political figures, this is for you.

◌ Part of Ottolenghi’s Cook for Syria column, this recipe for bulgur with tomato, fried aubergine and cucumber yogurt was spot on. This is one of those ones with quite mundane and banal ingredients that just shines.

This casserole is excellent.

21 of the 21st century’s best docs, according to GQ. Proud to say that one of my aunts has a credit on one of them! (#13)

How the Rolling Stones became fashion icons.

◌ Found my dream job: bibliotherapist.

◌ Ireland’s lighthouse trail looks delightful.