Maple Apple Crisp (or How to Bake Yourself Happy)

Maple Apple Crisp

Though generally content, I have lately found myself battling bouts of dissatisfaction. I covet the people responsible for a “sold” sign outside my favorite Craftsman home, the piles of primary-colored leaves in the background of friends’ Instagram photos, the couple on my Facebook feed trekking blissfully across Europe. Even girls wearing bright red lipstick or ballerina buns have found themselves in the crosshairs of my jealousy (I’m looking at you, Lauren Conrad), seeing as I am unable to follow such trends without resembling a clown or a toddler.

I rarely voice such complaints, recognizing they’re both absurd and outrageously outnumbered. Continue reading

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Homemade Soft Pretzels with Jalapeño Beer Cheese

Homemade Soft Pretzels with Jalapeño Beer Cheese

For a girl whose lineage is mostly German, I don’t do much to represent my heritage. I know exactly ONE German word (duft blatt, which means “fragrant leaf” or “rose petal”) but only because it was the AIM screen name of one of my best friends from high school. I’ve never had schnitzel and refuse to eat sauerkraut. I don’t even drink beer, the carbonation (as with Pepsi and champagne and every punch ever served at a wedding or baby shower) making it completely unpalatable, despite my many attempts to choke it down. Which may help explain how I went nearly 29 years without attending an Oktoberfest. Continue reading