About Me

The Basics:

Name: Natalie
Age: 20-something :)
Location: Ontario, Canada
Day job: Grad student

Likes and Dislikes:

Likes: Travelling and exploring new places, taking pictures of everything I do, salty snacks (I’m hopelessly addicted to snacking), Starbucks, Christmastime, reading, doing crosswords and other puzzles (I’m a big nerd), reality tv, Thai food, trying new craft beers, Bath & Body Works lotions (I own way too many), avocado toast, sunsets.

Dislikes: Raw onions, chocolate bars and chocolate flavours of most things, running (I’ve tried many times and now accept that I’ll never be a runner), rainy days, red meat, tofu, scary movies, being home alone (I’m a huge scaredy cat), Chinese food, ironing, stepping on sidewalk cracks, having to do anything before my morning coffee.

About this Blog:

Started: July 2011

Focus: It's hard to define or categorize my blog because I specifically decided not to try to fit my blog into one specific category when I started it.  I know that goes against every food blog rule there is (i.e. if you want high traffic you should find a specific niche), but I thought that worrying too much about fitting into a certain category would end up making my blog stressful, and that is the last thing I want from a hobby!

I'm simply cooking and sharing the food that I like to eat, and I hope that others will enjoy it too, whether or not it fits into a certain niche.  If I had to try to describe the food I generally eat, I would definitely say I strive to eat healthy and incorporate lots of nutritious ingredients into my meals.  However, not everything you see on this blog will be healthy, as I don't believe in dieting and restricting yourself to only "healthy" food.  I love baking desserts and treats; I don't eat them all the time, but I don't think there's anything wrong with indulging every so often when you have a generally healthy diet.

So to sum up, on my blog you'll see a lot of healthy dinner recipes, plenty of vegetarian meals and probably no recipes with red meat (see dislikes above), a good amount of desserts and treats, and generally easy recipe directions and budget-friendly ingredients.  Not every recipe may fit into that description, but I hope it helps!

Background Story (aka how I learned to cook and why I started this blog):

After years of living at home and enjoying my parents’ gourmet cooking, I finally left the nest to go off to grad school with my twin sister.  At the time, the only things I could cook were frozen french fries and scrambled eggs, and I prided myself on my ability to make those things very well.  For the first year or so away, I survived off a lot of sandwiches, boxed soups, frozen pizzas, and my sister’s growing cooking abilities.  But after a while, I started to realize that I couldn’t live this way forever.  It was around this time that my sister (and roommate) started to get into cooking blogs.  I could not understand her fascination with looking at pictures of food all day and constantly checking this strange thing called Google Reader.  After a while though, I finally decided to see for myself what all the fuss was about, and it didn’t take long before I was hooked too.  The more recipes I read, the more I started to think to myself that this cooking thing really didn’t seem as scary as I had thought.  After trying out a few successful recipes, I never turned back.  Cooking and baking turned out to be so much easier, more enjoyable, and more rewarding than I ever thought.  Now I love trying out new recipes, and my Google Reader and list of recipe bookmarks continue to grow every day.

Since I’m usually just cooking for myself, I try to cook healthy meals, and these often end up being vegetarian.  I’m not actually a vegetarian (though both of my sisters are); I could never give up chicken or fish, but usually vegetarian meals can fill me up for a lot less money.  I also love baking treats, but since I would eat the whole batch if left alone with it, I try to give these away to my or my boyfriend’s coworkers as quickly as possible!

I started this blog because I wanted a place where I could keep track of all of my favourite recipes and share them with others.  Since food blogs were a big part of the reason why I started cooking, if I can help do the same for anyone else out there who’s too scared to start, then I will feel like I’ve somehow repaid my dues to the blog world.  I also thought keeping a blog would motivate me to continue trying out new recipes and trying to improve my photography (plus I can always use another excuse to procrastinate on my school work!)

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