Friday Flotsam


Why do you think we say “smart cookie?”

“Oh, she’s a smart cookie. She’ll go far.”

Smart cookie? I don’t feel like cookies are the smartest of treats. Correct me if I’m wrong (I’m no baker), but aren’t they among the simplest of desserts? What’s so smart about a cookie?

What about, “Oh, she’s a smart macaron.” (but you have to twist your mouth into a French accent on the word macaron.) Macarons are NOT easy to make. You have to be pretty smart to know how to get that ish right.

Or even, “Oh, she’s a smart tiramisu.” I mean, all those layers. And the soaking! There’s so much soaking.

Or, “Oh, she’s a smart rainbow layer cake.” Again with the layers. And all the colors! So many colors.

Or or or, “Oh, she’s a smart bread pudding baked Alaska.” I don’t even know what that’s about but I’m positive you need brains for it.

Look, I’m not trying to be turd. I just feel like we need to go back to the drawing board and rethink this whole smart cookie thing.

Thanks for being there for me.

I have a weird question.

You’re like, “sh…ocker.”

Do any of you listen to classical music while reading? As in, at the same time? I never have but sort of feel like they would go hand in hand. Don’t you suspect it would enhance the reading experience? Maybe only if you’re reading Jane Austen.

I want to try it!

Maybe I’ll read one chapter with classical music on. And then once chapter in silence. Just to compare the two emotional results. Right? Sound like a plan?

Also you can probably tell by now but I need friends.


Yesterday’s recipe post including Rotel as an ingredient, got me wondering, Carrie Bradshaw style:

Do you call cheese dip CHEESE DIP? Or ROTEL?

Because are definite camps in this country that use the literal word ROTEL to describe the cheese dip they’re bringing to the Baptist church potluck.

Hey, man – I’ve totally been there. Back in the ’90s there was a chunk of time when, “I’ll make Rotel!” meant, “I’ll make cheese dip!” Miss those days.

Is this you?

Back row? Anyone?

Now I’m hungry for Rotel. I mean cheese dip.


I’ve got an announcement.

And this is hard for me to put into words on screen. I partially blame Aaron because this was his idea. And I’m not one to be left in the dust on personal productiveness and progression, you see.

For the month of August we’re going Paleo.

And you know what, I don’t even know what Paleo is. I thought it was some sort of astrological sign. Or an ancient pizza dough spinning technique. Hold on, I’m gonna Google it. One sec. Don’t go anywhere.


We’re going to eat like cavemen? No dairy or bread? BAHAHAHAHAHA. Mine will be partial. He can have his own fun with birdseed.

I’m all in for low-carb. But I’m not giving up my cheese. More like, PaleNo.

Two things: (this is where you come in, obviously) – would you mind giving me some Paleo-ish recipe ideas? These will mostly be posted in September, as some August recipes have already been shot. (“I’m NOT THROWING AWAY MY. . .SHOT.” Why yes Hamilton is in my brain 24/ 7 now, thanks.)

My main deal for August is . . . . wait for it, no wine. Yes you just read those words on

Okay, my birthday is in August, so we’ll allow for that weekend, duh. And my parents’ visit next week (we’ve all tested for the Covid – negatories here! waiting on their results and quarantining until then) Other than that, zip! Zilch! NADA. (not even tonight. I started on Monday, can you believe that?)

Want to try it with me?

Wait why are you laughing?

Weekend plans?

I’m replacing all our door knobs with glass and brass to look just like an ancient French chateau because we’re in a pandemic and what else do we have?

This weekend is also one of those, “let’s deep clean all the kitchen drawers, do some paint touch-ups here and there and organize the basement head to toe while listening to Taylor Swift’s new supposed indie album! Sound fun, everyone? Hello?. . . hello?”)

From this week, in case you missed it!::: A CHEESY Tomato Gratin. Yeah, yes, yeppers. And Slow Cooker Creamy Chicken Sliders. Another absolute must, y’all.

Off to make Rotel since I can’t have it until S E P T E M B E Rwaaaaah.

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21 Responses to Friday Flotsam

  1. Rayna July 31, 2020 at 8:44 am # is no longer strictly paleo but she has great paleo and paleo-ish recipes! Her buffalo chicken casserole and her steak tip hash recipes are delicious! Good luck on your Paleo journey :)
    • Amanda August 1, 2020 at 9:41 am #
      Totally just called the dip Rotel. In fact I was too old when I realized Rotel was an actual products of canned tomatoes ?
  2. Heather July 31, 2020 at 10:31 am #
    When I read I usually like to have some noise in the background. It actually makes me focus better unless it’s a super catchy song & then I pause to sing along ?. I blame this on growing up with the TV always on in my household. My husband needs for it to be quiet when he reads and doesn’t know how I can read with all of the noise.
  3. Autumn July 31, 2020 at 10:40 am #
    oh my goshhh YESSS to classical music while reading! I actually can't read in silence. I love some jazz or classical or ambient music while reading... or just like allll the time :) do it! and cheese dip :) and no to paleo haha
  4. Peekiesmom July 31, 2020 at 11:07 am #
    I second Paleomg! Great, flavorful recipes, baked goods, everything. But you may have to modify some for strict Paleo. Well Fed is another absolutely amazing source for Paleo recipes. Oh my gosh, we are leading parallel lives....Monday I cut out wine for at least 22 days (pandemic quarantine was making me feel depressed, and I figured I didn’t need to drink more depressants), I just cleaned and rearranged my Lazy Susan, which led to other cabinets and drawers being organized (I seriously open cabinets just to admire my work), I touched up paint in my laundry room after having the can of paint out for two months, and I also bought a new kitchen faucet which has yet to be installed. Feathering the nest is so rewarding.
    • Rose July 31, 2020 at 5:09 pm #
      Definitely open cabinets and drawers to admire my handiwork for days, weeks..... towels folded...moments of nest bliss!!!
  5. Jennifer C. July 31, 2020 at 11:16 am #
    Well...if you aren't drinking, what else are you gonna do (except deep clean)?
    • Chelsea July 31, 2020 at 6:29 pm #
      okay don’t tell Aaron but there are a few paleo-approved wines on the market soooo ????. Also, cheese dip. Actually, it’s usually queso or salsa con queso ‘round these parts (aka New England). I’m anti-diet but pro doing things that make you feel good so here’s to hopefully enjoying August ??
  6. Sharla July 31, 2020 at 11:26 am #
    All I’m going to say is that cheesy tomato gratin is the bomb!!
  7. Stephanie July 31, 2020 at 11:28 am #
    Rotel is cheese dip, 100%. You are on your own with the Paleo, I'll be over here with my bread and wine :)
  8. Christine July 31, 2020 at 11:38 am #
    No classical, but I do like a bit of noise in the background when I read, or do anything for that matter. Pure silence makes me nervous. I even like to fall asleep with a bit of noise, even if it’s my husband snoring. Always had to have music when studying way back when I did that sort of thing. The Cure was my fave to study with. I eat lazy keto, and it’s been really lazy lately! I love cheese; don’t know if I could it up.
  9. Nancy July 31, 2020 at 12:11 pm #
    I think wine is actually considered Paleo. It's grapes, right? It's Paleo in my book! A few years back, I ate Paleoish and just be careful when reintroducing foods you've cut out. I indulged on some Triscuits after not eating wheat for months and my tummy was NOT happy!! Regarding music while reading: one day long ago when I was reading Helter Skelter, Led Zeppelin's, "Cashmere" came on and I swear to God that little riff that sounds like Dunnah dah, Dunnah dah, Dunnah dah (I know I've lost you at this point) sounds just like the perfect background music for The Family to be sneaking up to Sharon Tate's house. To this day, when I hear Cashmere, I think of Charles Manson. I also rec and
  10. Janice July 31, 2020 at 12:47 pm #
    Classical music and books are the perfect partners and our favourite way to read in our house. Two of our favourite things in life. We lean towards calmer pieces rather than dramatic ones when reading.
  11. Catherine July 31, 2020 at 12:50 pm #
    Um, wait, isn’t cheese with rotel considered queso? Asking for a Texan? Paleo is going to be a no forme, give me cheese and carbs all day, in fact you can take away the meat and just leave me with queso and a cerveza! Good luck
  12. Deanna July 31, 2020 at 4:54 pm #
    I have classical on basically all day to study and/or read to. My currently favorite is the Jane Austin Soundtracks on Spotify. They also have really good reading playlists
  13. Brandy K July 31, 2020 at 5:33 pm #
    Listening to classical music is absolutely a MUST for me when reading! Preferably the piano :) and your crazy I’m not quitting wine during all this madness ? and both recipes are on the menu for next week!
  14. Julie July 31, 2020 at 6:18 pm #
    Bev, I feel like we are so *nsync with everything from music to books to food...please tell me you have listened to Folklore and love it? Cause I sure do...Mirrorball is my favorite. And I'm just gonna thank you again publicly for recommending us to watch Normal People...the show was 100% better than the book, and yes, you did warn us about the raw people shouldn't be mad! ;)
  15. Katie July 31, 2020 at 6:26 pm #
    Not always strictly classical music, but quite often I listen to some kind instrumental movie soundtrack while reading or working!
  16. Shannon July 31, 2020 at 9:56 pm #
    I'm not sure what "cheese dip" is, but I'd eat the $%!* Outta some queso ?
  17. Kaye August 1, 2020 at 8:23 am #
    Cheese dip? Who says that? Queso is it's name by golly! Good luck with the Paleo-ish. And those skewers in the photo above? Must make kabobs for dinner this weekend!
  18. Susan August 1, 2020 at 5:39 pm #
    Hard no on Paleo. First love: pasta. Second love: cheese. So no. What the heck are you thinking giving up wine for your birthday month, girl? Who does that? Wait, you didn't say 'no alcohol' so is that it? Tequila, vodka, beer, and all my other faves are okay but just no wine? I'm fine with that.

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