a retrospect: top + favorite posts from my blog

It’s interesting for me to look at which blog posts of mine get the most traffic vs which ones are my favorite. There is some overlap between the two.  Part of my mission with this post is to bring to light some of my poor neglected posts that I think deserve a spotlight! I put my favorites in bold and added a few others below.

Some of my top posts (in order):

Some of my other favorite posts:


gluten-free challenge: update

On a scale of 1-5, I would give myself a 4 on my gluten challenge. I made several small lapses, but overall I stuck to my gluten-free guns.

Monday through Friday wasn’t so hard because I was able to plan ahead. I did have dashes of soy sauce here and there but I also picked up gluten-free Tamari at Whole Foods towards the end of the week (thanks to LivingSocial for the WH deal!). And I had a bite of a chocolate chip cookie that a visitor of The Raleigh Forum brought by! My diet consisted of hearty and healthy salads; soup from Trader Joe’s (including roasted tomato and red pepper, as well as lentil soup); home-made frittatas (sans flour); lots of chopped veggies with Alouette spreadable cheeses for dipping; green beans; roasted Brussel sprouts with walnuts; ground turkey fajita bowls with chickpeas; apple sauce; this chicken sausage dish; and of course, coffee.

All was well even on Friday afternoon, as we grabbed sushi from Harris Teeter to eat in the car on the way to Charleston. And by eat, I mean I drove as my sister fed me pieces. The trouble set in later in the evening when we stopped at McDonalds for fries and milkshakes. Healthy? No. Gluten-free? Debatable. According to this article, the fries at McDonalds contain trace amounts of gluten.

On Saturday morning, we ate an al fresco breakfast at our adorable bed and breakfast. Unfortunately, the menu was delicious but certainly not gluten-free banana rum french toast! At the Mexican restaurant we went to for lunch, I requested extra rice and beans with my fajitas in lieu of tortillas. One point for Cristina! During afternoon tea at our hotel, I had a little cracker. Because cheese without a cracker is not the same. At the wedding we attended on Saturday night, I ate a roll. Not because it was delicious or out of necessity. Just for the heck of it. Minus five points for Cristina.

On Saturday night, we made new friends that we traipsed around town with. Let’s just say, I don’t think the Irish car bombs we imbibed  chugged at Tommy Condon’s were gluten-free. Nor was the Bud Light I drank half of and then dropped on the floor of Mad River. Trust me, the drop resulted from my clumsiness; nothing else.

Sunday morning’s breakfast consisted of Lowcountry Eggs Benedict- another lapse on my part. For lunch, we were cautious, ordering big garden salads and a sashimi appetizer. I grabbed a few bites of gluten-free cajun rice pilaf before jumping into bed and falling promptly to sleep at 9pm last night.

Since I haven’t figured out a fool-proof pattern yet, I’m now heading into my second week of being gluten-free. Wish me luck and stay tuned for some inspired gluten-free recipes!

livingsocial deal for zely&ritz

I just bought a LivingSocial deal for Zely & Ritz Tapas Restaurant & Wine Bar, which I’ve been meaning to check out for awhile! According to the website, everything is fresh, organic, and locally grown. It’s a bit new American for my normal taste, but I’m excited for a special treat!

Daily Deal: $40 to spend at Cabanas for $20

I just got LivingSocial‘s deal for today: spend $20 and get $40 to use at Cabanas on the Georgetown Waterfront from. Can’t wait to use it for spring brunch 🙂 And I’m obsessed with Mexican food!

Also: you can still get $5 free Deal Bucks for signing up via my link. Just go here.

farm club membership

I’ve been searching the internet recently to find a suitable Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program to join. These programs allow you to pay a flat fee and receive a weekly delivery of fresh produce from a local farm.

Today’s LivingSocial deal is absolutely perfect and I can’t WAIT to buy it.

Arganica Farm Club

One-Month Membership and Produce Box or Dairy Package ($27); Three-Month Membership, Two Produce Boxes, and Gift Card ($72); or Six-Month Membership, Three Produce Boxes, and Three Gift Cards ($145)

Click here to purchase!

LivingSocial and Amazon

LivingSocial’s deal with Amazon has almost 1 million buyers- holy cow! I know I’ll be buying it- and I’ll almost be certainly be putting it toward getting my long-awaited kitchen essentials, like:

Photo credit: renaware.com

Photo credit: raw-living-food-sucess.com

Photo credit: foodline.com


I am so so happy- the first week back at school for my second semester of senior year has been phenomenal. Just the right combination of relaxing, working, and playing.

Random musings:

  • The clearance section at Target makes my day. I got a reversible hot pink vest for $4!
  • I finally bought another set of pearls- I felt empty without a pair
  • Food dates are the best dates [see posts on girls dinner and girls brunch!]
  • I’m loving my new glasses- my eyes needed a break from contacts
  • Flavored coffee is so exciting- I’m looking forward to waking up to a different kind every day [I was not kidding about stocking up on different varieties- I bought caramel drizzle, mocha mint, vanilla nut, french vanilla, gingerbread, and pumpkin spice]
  • I need to schedule a massage appointment to use my gift certificate from Girls on the Run
  • I’m looking forward to perusing The New Brooklyn Cookbook, which was a gift from my brother and his wife
  • Scheduling tons of GW Bites meetings with potential new guest chefs
  • I have exciting GW Bites news [hint: it involves a juicer and cakes]
  • Trying to convince people to go to Medieval Madness with me- only $24 on LivingSocial.com!