Weekend Dispatch

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

It's hard to believe this coming weekend is Memorial Day weekend. It hardly feels like it. In the weeks leading up to Memorial Day weekend, the Jersey shore is usually buzzing with activity and seasonal businesses gearing up for a busy and prosperous summer season. But this year, things look a bit different around here. Although many businesses are gearing up to open, they are doing so amidst many restrictions. Local beaches are opening this weekend, but access is restricted, and once capacity is reached, others will be turned away. We ordered our beach badges online last week (a first for us as we usually get them in person at the beach) and have to pick them up tomorrow via a drive-thru process. In addition to badge pick up, here's what else I've been up to lately.

I've been seeking out more podcasts as I spend even more time at home. This week I discovered Switched On Pop, a podcast about pop music, the making of it and the meaning of it. While not all episodes are worth a listen, there are some that I have thoroughly enjoyed, particularly the one about the popularity of Post Malone. What makes a song a cult favorite? What makes a melody appeal to the masses? You'll learn the answers to those questions and more when you listen to this entertaining podcast.

A few weeks ago, I promised that I'd share my Stay Home Spotify playlist. It's still a work in progress, but here it is for your listening enjoyment. If you have any relevant and appropriate additions, please let me know as I'd love to grow this playlist.

At the beginning of quarantine, I set a goal of making two new-to-me recipes per week. Some weeks I've slacked off, but for the most part, I've met that goal most of the time and have discovered some great recipes as a result. One of the favorites has been this lemon broccoli pasta recipe from Ina Garten. It's super easy and incredibly tasty. The biggest bonus here is that everyone in the family loves it. I love the addition of toasted pine nuts, but I serve them on the side and anyone who wants them can add them. Also, you can use any shape pasta you have on hand.

I love trail mixes, but buying pre-made bags gets costly. A few weeks I threw together a mix that was comprised of nuts and things that I had in my pantry. It was delicious. You can use any nut/dried fruit combination that you like. I used a 1/4 cup of each of these: cashews, almonds, shelled pistachios, raisins, dried cranberries, white chocolate chips and semi-sweet chocolate chips.

I've got a couple of things on my watch list for the coming week. First up, I have about 30 minutes left of Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, which is a romantic comedy staring two of my faves: Matthew McConaughey and Jennifer Garner. This movie came up in Netflix as a suggestion, so I went for it. It's cute. Probably wouldn't watch it again, but it's been entertaining this time around. I'm also in the last season of Private Practice. I forgot how much I loved this show when it was on primetime. It's so good, and I love the music. Once I wrap up both of those, I'm going to start the second season of Dead To Me. I binged the first season is less than a week, and I am so excited to dive into season 2! Also, if you haven't watched the Michelle Obama documentary Becoming based on her autobiography, you need to get on that.

So, tell me. What do you have planned this holiday weekend?

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