How to cope with the post-Family Weekend feels

Family Weekend 2014 has come to a close, and at this point, you’ve probably got the feels. Whether your family came to Brown or stayed at home, saying goodbye to or being away from them has probably got you feeling some type of way. Loneliness/nostalgia/homesickness sucks, so here are some tips on how to start feeling better:

1. Adopt a pet. It’s tough to go from being surrounded by loved ones to being by yourself. In order to combat your feelings of loneliness, consider calling your local animal shelter and getting yourself a puppy, a kitten, or even a goldfish. Fill the hole in your life by creating a family of your own that will love you all the time! Just make sure your RPLs don’t know…

2. Get into a heated argument with your family. Nothing will make it easier to stop missing your family than wanting to never see their faces again. Give them a call after they leave, pick a hot topic–racism, classism, ableism, sexism, heteronormativity, sexuality, your social construct of choice, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, or which Blue Room muffin is best–and get really offended by something your parents say. Maybe they’re so horribly insensitive that they’re not up to speed with your vocabulary, maybe they say something that might or might not be somewhat controversial, or maybe they’re just not passionate enough. Regardless, exercise no restraint and get really upset. Your anger and frustration will help you feel a lot better about saying goodbye. Continue Reading

Sans Meal Plan: Shrimp Enchiladas, or Ode to the Food Processor

I’m not going to lie: cooking at home in a real kitchen with ample supplies, tools and an oven whose temperature gauge is spot on was incredible. Not that I don’t love my amazing apartment and roommates here on College Hill, but having a car to drive to the nearest Los Angeles farmers’ market and then bake your own bread is an undeniable pleasure that my current situation does not allow for. As a result, I took full advantage of cooking everything I possibly could from scratch while at home over winter break; from cornbread to salsa to key lime pie to lamb roast and beyond. But, now that I do not have such luxuries as a food processor and several pans of the same size in my possession (goodbye, triple layer Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Cake — you were the best thing to ever happen to me…), I have made it my mission to simplify some of the favorites I made while I was being spoiled by 80 degree Southern California weather.

While taking advantage of my kitchen at home, one of my absolute favorite dishes to make was Shrimp and Cotija Enchiladas with Chile Verde. Never having made salsa from scratch before, I decided to take the long route and do the entire dish as the recipe says, though whenever I reuse the recipe here at school, I’m sure I’ll use bottled chile verde due to my lack of food processor. I had made simple enchiladas before, a sort of Mexican-style lasagna with tortillas instead of pasta, red enchilada sauce instead of tomato sauce, and cheddar or jack cheese instead of ricotta and mozzarella. This style is a go-to favorite of mine, and I HIGHLY recommend it when cooking for a crowd (the Big Game, anyone?) because you can make a couple different enchilada lasagnas based on people’s meat versus non-meat preferences. That being said, if you want to class things up a bit, these shrimp enchiladas were light and flavorful, and could be made into a quick-prep meal should you decide to buy the bottled green stuff. Continue Reading