Hello! Hello! Welcome to another weekly episode of Good Things where I give you a peek into my everyday life during the week, and roundup my good links, ideas, books, and more.

A brindle french bulldog with a pink tongue wearing a blue blow up cone that looks like a travel pillow

This week’s Photo of the Week brought to you by a very cute Bertram in a cone (we scratched our eye again.) When we walk outside, people either are immediately sympathetic – or think that I’m mildly insane for walking my dog around in a travel pillow.

Last week’s highlight was a long awaited cheese class led by the ever entertaining Adam Centamore at Formaggio Kitchen with our Boston Area Wellesley Club, which included a tour of the cheese cave.

Even with above-average food and cheese knowledge, I’m always interested in learning new things, and classes at Formaggio never disappoint! (I think my favorite fun fact was that goat cheese is white because goats process beta carotene much better than cows, and thus don’t have any in their milk.)

Wheels of cheese stacked on shelves in the Forgmaggio Kitchen basement

Topics of Interest:

Usually when I sit down to write, I start out with a list of topics that I’m interested or I’ve been thinking about. Here are some of the things on my mind this week:

  • Cheese cave horror story: at a cheese class this week at Formaggio, Adam recalled the horror story of someone going into the cheese cave (years and years ago) and leaving a half eaten sandwich on a shelf – which ended up completely destroying the flora of the entire cave.
  • The Roman Empire: if you haven’t seen the memes – this is a trend of people asking their (usually male) partners how often they think of the Roman Empire. (The answer? A lot more than you’d expect.)
  • Social Battery Bedtime: your bedtime, and then your social battery bedtime.
  • Beyoncé put out a country song. Here are some gentleman dancing to it.
  • De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis: I’ve managed to do this to myself, likely from overusing my phone. Do not recommend.
  • Blast from the past: Growing up in New England and listening to the radio (Jamn 94.5 and the Jam Scam.)
  • Wow. OpenAI rolling out Sora and generating wild videos like two golden retrievers podcasting on a mountain
  • Ryan and Lucy’s Pet of the Week: Ryan and Lucy have Meg the Frenchie, and five cats, and each week they choose a pet of the week. (Logged in an apple note.)

This Week in Good Things:

💪 Let’s MOVE! I lifted 500 pounds. If you have not tried barbell hip thrusts… I whole heartedly recommend.

🥣 Family Dinner: my mom and brother live an hour away in New Hampshire, and we’ve started doing a family dinner at a restaurant once a month. This month was da LaPosta: winter chicories salad, fried calamari, bagna cauda pizza, and chicken parm. With some mini cheesecake from Crystal Bakery next door to go.

🐾 Pup Walks with Friends: I needed to be lured out of the house this afternoon, to get some steps in the cold weather, so Bertram and I ended up on a walk with Somchay and Penny.

🗝✨ Keys to the Kingdom: one of my favorite Wellesley alums, Darcy, gave us a mini zoom tour – an abbreviated version of the five hour Keys to the Kingdom tour at Magic Kingdom she used to give as a Disney cast member.

A Smattering of Other Good Things

  • 📖 Reading: This week I finally dove into Sarah J. Maas’ newest Crescent City Book. I’ve also been listening to the Butcher & Blackbird on Audible, seduced by BookTok’s recommendation of the double narrator duo.
  • 📺 Watching: I finished The Brothers Sun (dark action comedy). It was entertaining, violent, very silly, and just what I needed.
  • 🛍 Good Acquisitions: working out at home is $ when you get stronger. I got myself another heavier dumbbell this week.
  • 🚽 Tackling a nagging task: this week’s nagging task was replacing a toilet seat that had broken. If you ever need to go to Home Depot with zero crowds, highly recommend going during the Superbowl.
  • 🤣 Memes and randomness of the week: the Dune marketing team popcorn swag choice (I’d say it’s NSFW… but they rolled these out at the theaters!) // I’m (still) obsessed with this woman’s father who goes to the bar every week with a list of topics for his friends to discuss. // This relatable image:
a picture of a plate filled with assorted cheese, berries, grapes, toast, jam, walnuts from Formaggio Kitchen on a butcher block

The Weekly Meal Plan:

Still working through my long list of foods I’d like to eat in January. I’ve been eating my meals with some of the fruits of my labor (a Pondicheri cooking class where I made minced garlic, ginger, a green masala, and a coconut masala). Having pre-caramelized onions on hand in a good sized quantity is SO handy.

  • Sunday: Cauliflower and Crispy Chicken with cocktail sauce
  • Monday: Shrimp bowl with rice, cabbage salad, pineapple salsa, guacamole
  • Tuesday: Steak, broccoli, blue cheese and balsamic
  • Wednesday: Salmon, rice, tomato, avocado, cucumber, seaweed, pickled onions
  • Thursday: Chicken thighs with zucchini and fries
  • Friday: Beef taco pasta with peppers and onions
  • Saturday: Pork tenderloin with fennel salad

Lunches: Leftovers, Yuba (tofu skin) peanut noodles

Snacks: Yogurt and berries (I’m on a berry kick, even though they aren’t in season), soft boiled eggs, cottage cheese, cheese sticks.

Treat options: TJ’s Tarte Tatin. TJ’s Pretzel Bread Pudding. TJ’s Iced Gingerbread in the freezer. Peppermint Hold the Cones. Fried bananas. TJ’s Chocolate Cheesecake Freezer Bites.

🥑 Good Eats from this past week: Bulgogi, rice, napa cabbage. This recipe of greek baked fish, made significantly easier with pre-cooked caramelized onions in the fridge. Nachos, and nacho bowls. Baked salmon, french fries, and cocktail sauce.

What are you eating this week?

Previous Years:

Something I really enjoy doing is flipping back in my journal or my blog to the week of the year over the past several years. When I write it out in a list like this, it feels like a nice accomplishment!

That’s all for now! Hope you have a great week!

xo, Sam