Author: Donna James

Green & Garlicky Rice Bowl (with a Lesson on Food & Eggs)

I reaaallllly like rice bowls. Particularly this one because it uses leftover veggies + herbs + other greens in the fridge that otherwise may have been composted. Of course, a fried egg on top never hurts either. Oh, and did I mention that the only thing you have to cook in this dish is the rice?! It’s that simple. But first, a tangent… Errrggg – I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted. To say that life has been hectic is an understatement, but nowadays, who’s life isn’t all over the place? (If yours is going well, please send me some advice). The truth is towards the latter half of 2020, I lacked motivation to share recipes. Buuuuut…new year, new… just kidding, haha. It’s not that I neglected cooking or delving into new recipes – quite the opposite. I experimented more in the kitchen and discovered dishes that are now favorites. However, my relationship with food changed within the past year – I love food. No, I don’t mean just eating food. I love …

A Regular Gal’s Opinion on [Blueland] Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products

Once upon a time, I became interested in using “eco-friendly” and “sustainable” cleaning products in my home. Maybe back then I was less conscious about actually being sustainable but rather couldn’t stand the headache that often occurred after deep cleaning my home from the fumes of those super-duper effective cleaning products. After trying several brands of “eco-friendly” cleaning products over the last few years, I realized that none of them reallllyyyy got the grime out where I wanted it to, especially in the bathroom. Or the products smelled a bit too natural – like a really smelly sneeze (yuck). (One thing I should note too is that since I’ve worked in restaurants/cafés, I’ve been spoiled with using those commercial-grade cleaning products – the ones that make everything super squeaky clean, so when I clean my own home, I need it to be THAT noticeably clean.) Notes about “Eco-Friendly” Cleaning Products Alright, alright. I’m getting to the product review, I promise. But before I do, I want to address several important things when it comes to …

3 Simple Ways to Start Reducing Food Waste

Food waste is a growing problem in our modern society. In the United States, food waste is estimated at between 30–40 percent of the food supply. In 2017 alone, almost 41 million tons of food waste were generated, with only 6.3% used for composting from landfills and combustion for energy recovery1. Why You Should Care about Reducing Food Waste: Saves money from buying less food. Reduces methane emissions from landfills and lowers your carbon footprint. Conserves energy and resources, preventing pollution involved in the growing, manufacturing, transporting, and selling food (not to mention hauling the food waste and then landfilling it). I know there’s a larger problem at hand than just me and you. I know there’s large corporations and companies that are responsible for a large chunk of food waste in the U.S.. I’m not here to talk about them (not yet anyway). Today, I want to address how you and I can start making a change in our own homes. As the CEO of the company work for always says, “You cannot control what goes on …

Bibimbap Bowl (Mother of All Bowl Meals)

I’m so late to the game. I really only started to appreciate ‘rice bowls’ within the last year or so. They are so convenient to eat and I want to share my newfound love with you! In case you’re not familiar, Bibimbap is a Korean dish which typically consists of warm rice, sautéed vegetables, kimchi, gochujang, soy sauce, maybe meat, and fried egg… then you stir it all together before diving in. Because of the different flavors and textures in this bowl, it’s typically considered the ‘mother of all bowl meals’ – if that makes sense. (Anyone else feeling like this bowl lately? A mix of… well, everything? Happiness. Confusion. Anxiety. Excitement. Hope. Sadness. No? Just me? OK – I will go back to my corner now). I enjoy making this dish because it’s quick, easy, and it only requires one pan! It looks like there’s a lot of steps, but mostly because there’s a bit of chopping to do in the beginning, but not too much. I also like this because you can really …

Cinnamon Swirly Bread (Dairy Free)!

Finally, a recipe post!! OK, but please don’t yell at me because it’s a bread recipe. I know that yeast is a hot commodity right now and it’s easier to spot Waldo nowadays than to see yeast in stock in grocery stores… but just in case you were one of the people who hoarded yeast and you’re running out of recipes to try, this one is for you. Let me start off by saying that breads are not my forte, but this one is SO easy. My favorite part about this recipe is that it only takes about an hour for the dough to rise, unlike some breads + buns that need to rise for hours AND set overnight (cinnamon rolls). Also, my apartment smells the best when baking these (well, second to banana bread). Alright, I’m not going to ramble any longer. Mostly because my eyes are so droopy and I need to reunite with my bed soon. Goodnight,Donna Cinnamon Swirl Bread (Dairy Free) INGREDIENTS 2 tablespoons sugar 1 cup warm water, (105-110 F …

American Elections, Simplified

I know voting and elections are such sexy topics, which is why I want to bring it up again today! Today’s post won’t be a long guide, but instead I want to share this must-watch, extremely informative, easy-to-follow video by Hasan Minhaj about American Elections. Let me start off by saying that I am SO glad that this message is on Youtube and is freely accessible to everyone in the US. I truly believe that to make a change in your country’s system, you have to learn the history of how it became that way to avoid making the same mistakes over and over. Secondly, my favorite thing about this video (and really all his other topics) is that he is teaching us about the American two-party election system and why plurality voting (vs majority voting) is the cause of so many issues we have. He touches on “negative partisanship” which simply means that our voting decision tends to swing in the opposite direction of who we HATE, rather than voting for someone who we …

My Favorite Foods in Houston

I looked back at my Lasagna recipe that I posted beginning of the year and it made me do a knee-slapping laugh – I was talking about big things happening in 2020 and it is hilarious to go back and read about it. You would think during quarantine, I would have posted a million recipes on here with all the extra time I had working from home. Don’t get me wrong – I cooked a lot. If being in quarantine for two months taught me anything, it’s that I realized I don’t love cooking as much as I thought I did. Well, I still love it, but cooking 5-6 times a week, and sometimes even up to twice a day started to feel like a chore. And then came the worst of it all– those damn dishes. So. many. dishes. This fueled my lack of motivation to take ‘professional’ photos of my cooking process. All I wanted to do was eat at a restaurant, share stories, and laugh with friends. Do I sound like a …

You Should Be Composting… in Your Apartment

What the F*ck is Compost and Why Should You Care? (n.) Compost is decayed organic material used as a fertilizer to help plants grow. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, food is the biggest ingredient in American trash. Currently, more than 35% of the average garbage can is filled with kitchen scraps – the ones that should be composted instead of ending up in landfill. When you compost, you help keeps these materials out of landfills where they take up space and release methane, a potent greenhouse gas1. “Wait, hold on. I thought methane was good?” you ponder. Well, you are partially correct. Let me explain. Natural gas consists primarily of methane. When methane is produced from non-fossil fuel sources such as food & green waste, it can take the carbon out of the air (which is a good thing!). Methane provides a great environment benefit, producing more heat and light and energy vs. fossil fuel (coal & or gas refined from oil). It also produces significantly less carbon dioxide and pollutants that produce smog …

What’s & Who’s | Texas Primary Runoff Election (Part III)

It is 1:48 AM CST and I am finally ready to publish this post. We have a lot of ground to cover, so grab a bunch of snacks and a mug of coffee before diving in. Apologies in advance for any typos and grammatical or language errors. My English typically suffers as the night goes on. Kaykay typically proofs for me but he’s knocked out and currently snoring like a bear. Before you read this post, make sure you check out Part I & Part II first. Today I want to give you information about all the other races/ballots/people in the Texas Primary Runoff Election, in addition to the Senate & Representative candidates I mentioned in my last post. Please note that these candidates are within Harris County, so some of these people may not be in your county’s ballot. If you do not live in Harris County, click here to find out who’s in your county’s ballot. Select Year > Select either July 14th REPUBLICAN or DEMOCRATIC Primary Runoff on the Election drop down …

What’s & Who’s – U.S. Senate & U.S. Representative | Texas Primary Runoff Election (Part II)

Alright. It took me longer than I thought to research this information. But as promised, this post is about the positions & candidates in the Texas Primary Runoff Election for Harris County on July 14, 2020 – particularly, the U.S. Senate and U.S. Representative. I tried to be as unbiased as possible – most of the information here were pulled from each candidate’s website and/or a non-partisan source. I am here to inform you, not necessarily persuade you on who to vote for. Keep in mind that there’s no such thing as a perfect candidate. It’s also okay to disagree with some views of your top candidate(s) – just like how you and your best friend don’t agree on everything. I want to encourage you to do your own research on these candidates and vote for whoever is the best choice for your own beliefs and priorities. Remember, if you voted in the March 3, 2020 Primary, you may only vote in the Runoff Election of the same party. If you did not vote in …