Welcome to the inaugural post of our newest series "Things We're Digging," which will detail products, activities, apps, literally anything we're unnaturally into at the given moment. Oh yeah, it's about to get weird. (Not really...please keep reading)
SO without further ado, here's what Krista is digging right now:
List this under "Weird things an under-30-year-old should not be buying, but is." But in all seriousness, this modern pressure cooker has a multitude of functions that make it a staple in any amateur cook's kitchen. You can make your basic soups and stews, yes, but also you can easily make quick spaghetti squash, dozens of mashed potatoes, hardboiled eggs in 20 minutes, bone broth, and even yogurt! How cool is that? Bone broth in just TWO hours??? Life. Changing. Read about the benefits of bone broth here and here, if you're curious or mildly turned off.
I was always intimidated by the idea of pressure cooking. Would it explode? Aren't they usually gigantic? Would I ever actually use it? Serious questions. However, after reading blog after blog raving about the amazing-ness of the Instant Pot, I immediately added one to my Amazon Wish List. And best part? I finally snagged one when it was marked down over 50% on Cyber Monday!!! It's amazing and totally takes the "pressure" out of "pressure cooker." Oh yeah, went there.
Is it possible to be physically and emotionally attracted to a machine? 'Cause if so, the new MacBook Pro has got me feeling something special.
Maybe some of you will be less impressed by this machine than myself, but please note: I was still working from a 2007 MacBook Pro. Oh yes, that baby was still trucking along, albeit slower than a geriatric swimming through a pool of molasses. I finally, in a moment of frustration, bit the bullet and bought a brand new machine after it took 30 minutes to open iPhoto on my old model. Patience is not my strong suit.
I opted for the version without the new Touch Bar - it seems excessive for my purposes, but I can see it being very exciting for designers, editors, and photographers needing to toggle between apps or to use for shortcuts. Honestly, being able to sync all my Mac products (yes, I'm hopelessly dedicated to Apple) across the board and to actually use my machine for basic functions is exciting enough for me. Plus - the space gray? DAMN SEXY. If you need more validation - even a 10 year-old at Starbucks the other day noticed it was the new model and commented on how nice it is (how are kids so techy these days??).
I've used a number of clay masks over the years, and have even made my own, but none have ever been quite as effective - or restorative - as this one. Beautycounter is the latest craze among many bloggers, but for good reason: it truly is one of the safest alternative beauty lines for people who are trying to reduce the amount of chemicals they're using on their skin but who don't want to products that are "too crunchy." And I respect that . After trying nearly every hippy-dippy alternative beauty method - from making my own oil cleansers to washing to my hair with baking soda and apple cider vinegar - I just wanted normal products.
Beautycounter to the rescue! I have yet to try the whole line, but so far, I'm thoroughly impressed, and my skin has already improved immensely. Most notably from this mask! I was almost turned off by the price tag (it seems steep when you've been making your own for next to nothing!) but trust me - it's fantastic. I use it all over my face once a week or so, and as a spot treatment when I have some stubborn breakouts. It dries them up more speedily than other products I've tried without drying out your skin!
I'm sooo late to the game but holy toledo - this show is amazing. I generally don't watch much TV and only watch streaming services (so I can binge - obviously). And I made the awesome mistake of starting Shameless from the top, and I'm being honest when I say I've never been sucked down such a deep television wormhole! I could not stop watching this family - they're raw, funny as hell, and somehow relatable? I may not be from the south side of Chicago but the writers make me feel like I have a kinship with this family. I've already finished up to the most recent episode and cannot wait till Sunday night to watch!
5) Local breweries
I am so glad the central coast of California is going through a "beer renaissance" of sorts right now. San Diego has always been the beer capital of California, with tons of amazing craft breweries (Ballast Point, Stone Brewing, Green Flash, Coronado, Stone, Modern Times...I think you get my point)
Finally, at long last, some more spots are popping up in Ventura (holla, locals!) and Santa Barbara. Here are some of my favorites, and some I need to try:
*Topa Topa Brewing Company: This place is the bomb, and most definitely my favorite in the area. They have a small tasting room here in Ventura, and recently opened another, much larger spot in Santa Barbara. The brews are so delicious and they usually have about eight unique options to choose from. Plus, if you're local, you'll love that all the beers are named after local spots in the Ojai/Los Padres National Forest area. It makes you love where you live!
Recommended for first timers: Go for the Chief Peak IPA. Even non-IPA lovers will enjoy.
*MadeWest Brewing Company: Honestly, I've been here once. The beers were okay - but the space. The space! It's gorgeous. It's a huge, open warehouse with outdoor seating, it's a great place to go hangout, chat with friends, and listen to live music. Very instagrammable, for those who care about that sort of thing.
*Ventura Coast Brewing: So this place is brand spanking new. I am super, duper glad new places are popping up in the area. BUT I will say - I'm not too impressed with the beers just yet. However! The space is great and wide open (I'm all about the spaces right now), it's just off Main Street here in Ventura, and I think they'll come along quickly. They have about five beers on tap, and they offer a tasting flight with all five! Love that.
Most unique choice: They have a nitro amber on tap! It was really smooth and unique - definitely worth a try.
*Institution Ale: Ok, so this one is out in Camarillo (15 or so minutes south of Ventura), but the beers are awesome. Like, legitimately, SO great. They usually have at least twelve options and are constantly changing it up and brewing new flavors.
Recommended: Go with a friend and get a tasting flight so you can try a variety! There's literally always something new. And if they have it: go for the Thai Chili White Walls IPA. It's not spicy, but you taste the smokiness of the Thai chilis and it's mind-blowing. So, so good. OH and - get a pizza. Every single one is delicious.
*Islands Brewing Company: This is a older, well-loved spot out in Carpinteria, just north of Ventura. They have their unique brew, the Avocado Honey Ale - which, in the spirit of honesty, I usually only drink at the annual Avocado Festival in Carp. But it's delicious anyways, and the rest of their brews are pretty solid! Plus, visiting Carpinteria is like going on a mini-vacation: it's a quaint little town with calm beaches that usually aren't overcrowded (unless you go on a summer weekend). Worth the visit!
*Poseidon Brewing Company: Ok, so I haven't been here, nor have I tried their beers. But it's on my to-do list! It's in the more industrial area of Ventura, so it's a bit out of the way. If you make it there early enough, pay a visit to Beacon Coffee next door as well - one of the best coffee spots in Ventura!
All right, that's all folks! Hope you enjoyed this edition of "Things We're Digging." 'Til next time!