Thing 16: Bucatini

Ok I am going to admit that I did not know about bucatini until there was a shortage. I am not writing much here because I am asking you to read this entire longform piece about the shortage from Rachel Handler. But it really is the superior pasta. 

And if you’re still buying tomato paste for every day cooking in a can like a chump, upgrade yourself to the tube. But write the opening date on it in sharpie so you can toss it at 45 days (if you haven’t gleefully consumed it all). Maite in Houston gets some bucatini and some ‘mato tube.

Thing 15: CORSX Snail Mucin 🐌

Put this snail stuff on your face and glow like a TikTok star. I’ve championed CORSX products before and they remain one of my go to brands (I buy most of my K Beauty products here). I use a small amount every day after cleansing in the morning and follow it with other serums, sunscreen, and then moisturizer.

Ok so the snails—are they…ok? For CORSX products, snails are placed over a mesh net in a dark and quiet room (perfect for nocturnal lil’ guys). The snails freely roam the mesh for about 30 minutes, leaving mucin in their trails.

Throughout the process, there is no external stress applied to the snails or the mesh net to force mucin production. Optimal production occurs when snails are well-rested and comfortable in their habitat, which is why mucin collectors try their best to make sure that the snails are healthy and comfortable. Basically, the snails have a job. It’s capitalism, so still sad, but I have a job too 😭. As does Karina in LA, whose skin was already always glowing, but even more so now with her bottle of 🐌.

Thing 14: Woolzies Essential Oil Blends

Olfaction is the sense most tied to both emotion and memory. Though when I think about it too much I get flashbacks of that bananas movie about the man who liquefied women to turn them into perfumes (also a book but I never read it). I think it ended in an orgy? I digress…but smells are powerful!

This year I started using essential oils to add some good smells to my life. I love so many of the Woolzies blends. You can use them with their wool dryer balls, or in a diffuser, or as I do—on your body. My favorite use is to add a few drops to an unscented moisturizer. 

The after sun blend is one of my go to scents these days, but I adore using the sleep blends at night. An evening bath with a few drops in the tub or a little in some lotion on my hands, legs, feet helps induce a relaxing and calm sleep atmosphere. And as a chronic insomniac, I utilize any tool I can find.

Zach in Pittsburgh gets the Sleep Collection (Sweet Dreams, Relax and Stress Relief blends ) to try and improve his quest for better zzzzz’s.

Thing 13: Books!

This is my 5th year of running an online book club (was doing online book club before it was cool). I wrote a lot about it last year, so you can read more there if you like. Rebecca in Cleveland gets a copy of the November 2021 book Of Women and Salt by Gabriela Garcia purchased from the Bookshop page for Visible Voice Books in Cleveland. 

We have one more book to read for 2021: How the Word is Passed by Clint Smith. Smiths’ book, as well as another 2021 pick Kink, made it to the New York Times Notable Books of 2021 list. Essentially, I am a good picker. 

Normally here is where I would release the 2022 Book Club list, but I am not ready yet! Feel free to send me your ideas!

Thing 12: Tip Top!

canned cocktail and coupe glass

Prepackaged cocktails are both a boon and a scourge. So many are sooooo bad, but they ARE very convenient for going places (illicitly drinking in parks, camping, tubing, etc.). Tip Top comes through for me here. They are delicious, tiny, and come in the most recyclable material- aluminum cans. Plus, a fancy giraffe mascot!

Delta has started offering the Tip Top old fashioned and the margarita on board certain flights. But more importantly, the most prominent liquor store in Grand Central also sells them. These little beauties are PERFECT for trains. Drink straight, pour over ice, or as I recommend with the margarita, add a splash of your own seltzer water. 

I am currently writing this while drinking these on a train. And I could ask for no better feeling. Tara in Arlington will be getting a hand delivery of two margaritas, two old fashioned, and two manhattans. If you live in CO, FL, GA, NY, SC, or TX you can find them in store. Otherwise, you can order them online.