The first half of 2019 is over and we’re six months closer to 2020, and I am in a state about it. I’m in a state of disbelief that we are already in July and I feel like I haven’t done a single thing worthwhile or accomplished anything yet this year. Its kind of depressive, to be honest, which is kind of how I’m feeling at the moment. It’s not a great feeling, it’s not a state that I want to be in, but it just is.
I’m itching for something new, something challenging, but I don’t know what that is – yet.
Looking back at June, it wasn’t a bad month. I read a bunch of good books, listened to some great music and podcasts, and learned to fix my broken washing machine with some help from YouTube.
Secrets from My Vietnamese Kitchen by Kim Thúy – Over the past year, I have been trying to learn and cook more for my family and myself – especially dishes that my family love and enjoy. While my Chinese heritage has arguably played a larger role in my upbringing, my Dad was born and raised in Hanoi. I love Vietnamese food, I especially love my Dad’s Vietnamese cooking, and I really wanted to recreate some dishes for him.
The recipes that are found throughout this cookbook are relatively simple and give you the basic understanding of Vietnamese cooking, concentrating on Southern Vietnamese cooking. I really enjoyed making some of the dishes from this book and really enjoyed learning more about the background of one of Canada’s best writers. (Kim Thúy is an award-winning Vietnamese Canadian author and one of the most vibrant authors I’ve had a chance to see live.)
Duchess by Design by Maya Rodale – I love discovering romance authors I haven’t read before, and this book in particular by Maya Rodale is one of the best I’ve read this year. It’s everything you hope for in a romance novel, full of fun, sizzle, and a really epic love story. While most of the historical romances that I’ve read are based in the United Kingdom, this book takes place in New York City which was really refreshing. 110% recommend if you’re looking for a great summer romance read.
TV & Movies (+ YouTube Videos)
Elementary and Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD returned to TV this month and I couldn’t be happier. I really love both of these shows and I’m especially excited and a bit sad to see where Elementary goes, as this is its final season.
Ashley Ford’s Brooklyn apartment on Apartment Therapy’s YouTube channel was one of the most uplifting videos that I’ve watched in a while. Ashley is an incredible writer and just an amazing person, from what I’ve gleaned. Her message about her home and what home means is just spot on. Definitely worth checking out this video: LINK.
This month really has been the month of Raleigh Ritchie for me. I first discovered him when he made an appearance years ago on The Graham Norton Show and have loved his music ever since. The acoustic version of his hit song “Time in a Tree” has been on replay since it debuted. Check it out: LINK.
On She Goes is not only a podcast but a digital platform that is focused on women of colour and helping women of colour travel more confidently, adventurously, and frequently. I first started listening to the podcast from its inception since one of its original voices was Aminatou Sow, aka. one half of the Call Your Girlfriend podcast and have continued to listen even after Sow’s departure. It’s a really fantastic podcast that dives not only into topics of travelling but what travelling means, especially to women of colour. It one of the things that really inspired me to travel alone, confidently and adventurously last year, and continues to be a podcast that I tune into regularly. Highly worth checking out if you haven’t already.
What’s Your Drama is another Lainey Lui podcast and one that is highly entertaining. Lainey and her co-host Sasha Tong dive into topics like relationships, sex, love, work, friends and everything else in this podcast and is based off the “Sasha Answers” column from Lainey’s gossip site LaineyGossip.com. It’s a highly enjoyable podcast if you love drama.
I fell in love with Maison Margiela Replica perfume ‘Whispers in the Library’. It is everything I want in a scent and so much more. It’s currently on my wishlist as it costs a whopping $150CAD per bottle. I’ve settled for a rollerball version for now.
YouTube ‘how-to’ videos have been a lifesaver this month. I literally renovated my own bathroom and fixed my broken washing machine with help from these how-to videos. I mean who wants to pay for a handyman when you can just YouTube it?
And speaking of Youtube how-to videos and cooking, I’ve really enjoyed recipes from a Marion’s Kitchen YouTube channel this month. Marion is a big cooking star in Australia and one that focuses on Asian cuisine. Her recipes are really simple and easy to follow and have turned out great every time I’ve made one of her recipes.
That’s it from me from June.
Thanks for reading!