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, reality TV, Thai food, craft beer, yoga, Zumba, 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, 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), an occasional dessert or treat, 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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