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My Thank You Letter To Toni Morrison

Photo credit: Michel Euler/AP/Shutterstock

I’ll never forget the moment I finished reading Sula by Toni Morrison.

I closed the book and then cried.

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Home Chef Review – See Why I Love This Meal Kit Service


Overview

Home Chef makes dinnertime a breeze. From classic meal kits to convenient Oven-Ready and Fast & Fresh options, their meals are designed to fit different needs. They’re the perfect solution for any household looking for quick-n-easy breakfasts, lunches, and dinners. You can even order snacks, and cold brews as well! They’re incredibly affordable, with meals starting at only $7.99.

As a professional food editor, I tested Home Chef for a week to get a full view of how it stacks up against its competitors. Here’s everything you need to know:

What’s on Home Chef’s Menu

Home Chef’s menu features 30+ recipes and 18 extras each week. And if you consider the number of protein customizations you can make with select meals, that’s a mighty robust menu. With their Customize It tool* you can upgrade, swap, or double up on your favorite protein – options include antibiotic-free boneless skinless chicken breasts, salmon filets, Impossible Burger, and more.

Choose from fancy dinners like their Blackened Salmon with Sun-Dried Tomato Alfredo Campanelle, or pick one of their mouth-watering Oven-Ready meals like the Cotija and Jalapeño-Crusted Chicken that requires close to zero prep. Simply assemble all ingredients in the tray you receive with your order and pop it in the oven. And on extra busy days, their Fast & Fresh microwavable options like the Cherry Chipotle Brisket Tacos are a true life savior – equally delicious but ready in only a few minutes!

Home Chef gives you the option to filter recipes based on your personal preferences, such as:

  • Calorie-conscious
  • < 30 minutes
  • Carb-conscious
  • Vegetarian

And I absolutely love their vast selection of add-ons that you can simply add to your weekly order!

Unboxing

Home Chef’s ingredients are shipped in a biodegradable, insulated box with reusable cool gel packs that keep the produce cold. You get fresh, pre-portioned ingredients organized in separate bags, making the cooking process super convenient.

Each order arrives with easy-to-follow recipe cards. Of course, they’re recyclable, but the idea is to hold onto them and reuse. The cards provide clear instructions and an image of the delicious meal so you know the degree of difficulty, spice level, cook time, and what your Home Chef meal will look like once plated.

Cooking and Eating

Brainstorming recipes, driving to the grocery store, selecting all the ingredients, and cooking can get exhausting. No wonder we go for highly caloric frozen meals or greasy takeout.

Home Chef, however, takes the hassle of cooking away, by saving time and making the cooking process enjoyable! Did you know that they feature the most Oven-Ready options of leading meal kit services? Plus, you will never cook the same meal twice. Instead, you can explore a wide range of flavorful recipes and cuisines from all around the world.

It’s astonishing how easy it is to develop a solid routine where the family gathers together every night to enjoy a wholesome, home-cooked meal.

Subscription

Signing up for Home Chef is super simple:

  1. Click on one of the links below and get redirected to the Home Chef Website. Then click on your preferences by answering a few questions.
  2. Enter your email address and zip code to create your account.
  3. Build a box that suits your needs by selecting the number of servings and recipes you would like to receive each week
  4. Enter your address and choose your preferred delivery day. Remember, their subscription is flexible, you can skip a week or pause your account at any time in just a few clicks. You won’t have to call or email anyone.
  5. Pick your favorite meals from their menu . . . and done!

You might find it a little frustrating that you have to complete the checkout process before you get to their menu page. But don’t worry. You can still change your mind after browsing their recipes.

If you need further assistance, just reach out to Home Chef — the #1 in Customer Satisfaction among leading meal kit companies**.

The Bottom Line: Is Home Chef Worth It?

Home Chef is a fantastic service for any household looking for a convenient dinnertime solution. Their recipes are tasty, easy to cook, and fit various lifestyles and dietary needs – all for a brilliant price point, with meals starting at only $7.99.

Sure, there are cheaper meal kits out there. But I can honestly say that Home Chef’s overall service is of the highest quality, so I don’t mind paying a little extra. What an exceptional experience, I will for sure continue with my subscription.

Home Chef is worth the investment, I highly recommend you try it!

Our friends at Home Chef are extending a special offer to our readers! Follow this link to get 18 Free Meals & Free Shipping!

Offer Expires In

*Source: https://www.homechef.com/customize-it

**Source: US Grocery Benchmark Study, April 2020, Market Force Information, Inc.

WORLD

7 Books That Helped Shape My 2022

Photo by Gift Habeshaw on Unsplash

I could write an epic poem based on my 2022. But I shall refrain and avoid boring you all. I’ll just say this, it was one helluva year.

But I read more books than I expected, and that’s a win I’ll gladly take!

Despite everything that happened last year, I believe it was all worth it. Because I learned that I love learning, exploring, and uncovering new perspectives.

Here are 7 books I’m glad I read in 2022:

In Arcadia, Ben Okri

One read I wasn’t expecting or hadn’t planned.

No, this book found me. I was sorting things in the back corner of a forgotten closet, and there it was calling my name. And what a treasure it is. A portrait sends a group of diverse characters on a deeply magical journey filled with stunning scenery and fascinating mythology. Not to mention Okri’s eloquent prose.

Ben Okri’s In Arcadia will transport you to a world of intrigue and history.

Memed, My Hawk, Yashar Kemal

Another book I hadn’t heard about, but grabbed from my roommate’s shelf before a 7-hour train ride. I headed out the door and hoped for the best.

The story is a fast-paced adventure that takes you through the Turkish countryside with a clear narrative style that perfectly suits this tale of rebellion. But at its core, Kemal’s Memed, My Hawk wants you to walk away from it with a different perspective on good and evil and their impact on society and the individual.

Tender Is The Night, F. Scott Fitzgerald

A lover of The Great Gatsby, I was intrigued to read more from Fitzgerald. Even more so when I discovered that this novel was his fourth and final novel. Although I wasn't prepared for the depths of sadness this book reaches I couldn’t put this down.

Tender Is The Nighthauntingly mirrors the tragic but real experiences so many of us have had at one point in our lives.

Parable of the Sower, Octavia Butler

A smack-back into reality.

A well-deserved smack might I add. Butler’s Parable Of The Sowerkeeps you on your toes with its all-too-familiar themes of religion, climate change, survival, and community. Its main character, Lauren, will be your new best friend, your confidant. And with each turn of the page, you join her in her crumbling world. And that strikes quite close to home.

If you’re looking to get into sci-fi, Butler is the best author to start with. This is a must-read.

The Color Purple, Alice Walker

A touching and immensely powerful cultural touchstone of not merely African-American literature but World literature. Walker weaves a realistic story of a young woman’s journey from the drudgery of domestic abuse to independence.

The novel is unapologetically female and black and opens up readers to a richly cultured world that has been ignored for hundreds of years. Listen up, time to pay attention. Give this magnificent story a try.

The Hobbit, J.R.R Tolkien

The adventure that started it all, and one I read as a child. But I must admit I fell in love with Amazon’s Rings of Power series, so I immediately ordered The Hobbit and devoured it in one go.

It’s simply a great modern classic!

J.R.R.’s worldbuilding is LEGENDARY. His magical creatures, their mystical cultures, and the constant perils they face are imaginative and so inspiring. Who knows, maybe I have a fantasy story in the works!

Sula, Toni Morrison

A book I’ve read more times than I’ll admit on the internet but one I’ll continue return to. With each delicious read, there’s always something new to uncover. Toni Morrison is a master of prose and effortlessly portrays the friendship between two black women - the love, the betrayal, and the loss of innocence.

Sula makes me think about my own friendships - current and lost - and how profound platonic love is.

What We’re Watching: Everything We Loved About The Piano Lesson

Image courtesy: Broadway World/Shutterstock

Monday night, I left the Barrymore theater in awe, inspired, and excited to tell anyone with ears how incredible the Broadway revival of August Wilson's The Piano Lesson was from start to finish.

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Sul Sul! The Sims 4 Is Calling

Sul Sul!

If you don’t know, that’s how Sims greet one another in Simlish, the language spoken in each iteration of The Sims franchise, including my personal favorite and the one currently loaded on my iMac: The Sims 4.

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CULTURE

Beam Me Up Scotty - The Extraordinary Legacy Of Nichelle Nichols

At a time when most Hollywood stars had pin-straight, blonde hair and crystal-clear, blues eyes, Nichelle Nichols' presence electrified many Black Americans who’d never seen someone who looked like them shimmering on the silver screen.

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Getaway — The Real Hidden Gem of Nashville

I love nature, but I’m also a home boy. I adore snuggling up on the sofa with all of the creature comforts of home. Being a Tennessee native, I tend to vacation close by. I figure, what’s the point of traveling when there’s still so much to discover?

Over the years, I’ve seen a lot in Nashville and loved every bit. Whenever my friends come to visit, we make sure to hit the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, Broadway, the parks, and my favorite restaurants and bars.

I really enjoy my state. I know where to go when I’m having a relatively hard day, what pizza — and yummy toppings! — to order at City House, and where to find the best cocktails. Although I view myself an expert on Tennessee, I have yet to find an idyllic place for a weekend escape off the grid.

I was scrolling through Instagram when I noticed a post about Getaway Dale Hollow, which is located near Celina and set in Moss Forest. The forest floor is a carpet of deep green moss and the cozy cabins looked super quaint.

Getaway’s an excellent alternative to the same-old, same-old vacation but in a rustic setting. Tucked away in the most beautiful places, they have clusters of tiny cabins that offer the comforts of home, just two hours from major cities. Getaway Dale Hollow’s location is only two hours outside of Nashville.

With 50 to 150 feet between cabins, they’re socially distant by design. Check-in and check-out are contact-free. Plus, rates start at only $99/night.

I’d be completely alone and have a chance to reconnect with my thoughts, feelings, and myself. Each cabin has a warm shower, a private toilet, air conditioning and heat, a charming mini-kitchen, and a freshly made queen-sized bed that sleeps two — or two queen beds that sleep four.

It seemed like the perfect hidden gem close by the city of Nashville. I booked it and couldn’t wait to head there that weekend. From the minute I stepped out of the car, the quietness was bliss. I found my cabin — even better than the website — and ran in to see my comfy queen-sized bed. The huge glass window has to be my favorite: no sidewalks, no buildings, no traffic, nothing but trees for miles.

On my first night, I relaxed on the Adirondack chair by the fire pit, watching the flames and sipping on a crisp Chardonnay. I got the best night’s sleep in months. I didn’t wake up to my blaring phone alarm, which was all packed away in the lockbox. Instead, I woke to the sun streaming in through the window. Once I’d polished off my morning cup of coffee, I was off to explore.

I started with a trek around Roaring River Falls — only a few miles from the cabin! I walked till the end of the trail and was rewarded with the most beautiful waterfall — the second gem I uncovered.

I stopped at Teddi Lou's Bakery for lunch and picked up an order of fresh apple fritters and their famous jalapeno poppers — absolutely delicious! My afternoon was spent at the Clay County Museum of History, taking in all the local history. Then I popped into Dale Hollow Antiques and picked up an antique tea set for my mom.

On my way back I grabbed a few ingredients from Scott's Bestway and rustled up a delicious dinner that I savored by the fire wrapped in a comfy blanket — absolute bliss! The next morning I got in another quick hike through the Bearwaller Gap before heading back to the busy city.

I know Nashville is incredible, but Getaway has revealed a whole new site to Tennessee. Now when my friends come to visit, I can take them to Getaway so we can all really relax. These glorious cabins nestled in the woods have made me love my state even more.

Any time I need an escape, I simply hop in my car and take off for a perfectly blissful weekend only two hours away.

If you’re looking for a tranquil time away — with a little adventure mixed in — check out Getaway Dale Hollow. It’s truly the Hidden Gem of Tennessee.

Plan Your Next Adventure With Getaway!