Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Really Random Tuesday #13: Magazines, Holiday Cards, and Oven Fries

As much as I love reading books, especially in bed, sometimes I just want to curl up with a magazine and relax. Or sit in the living room, feet propped up, and leaf through a magazine, looking at the pictures and reading a bit. Magazines that belong to waiting rooms often keep me calm or entertained before appointments, and at times I discover bright ideas in them; I may be inspired to try a different way of doing something, a new product, or a recipe. Once in a great while, I pick up a magazine that catches my eye at the check-out while shopping, but for the most part, I read what comes into my house in the mail, and so I thought I'd mention the magazines I get regularly in this fashion.

MORE is a monthly magazine, "for women of style and substance". My good friend, Eriko, gave me a two-year subscription to this magazine as a birthday gift. (I told her that she doesn't need to get me a birthday gift next year.) I've only read a couple of issues so far but have enjoyed this magazine, which has featured actresses Jane Lynch and Jennifer Beals in recent issues.

My husband started my subscription to The New Yorker many years ago when we were first married, because I'm from NYC. Now I have quite a collection, and still save as many copies as I can, although we're running out of room for them. I love this weekly magazine, and only regret that I don't spend more time reading it. I enjoy the fiction and in-depth articles in The New Yorker. I really do feel as if I should be reading more of the excellent writing in it, which would hopefully help me improve my own writing. I also like to read about the happenings around the city, which I don't visit often enough (maybe once a year) but always love reading about. And the cartoons in this magazine are insanely funny.

I also get Prevention, a health magazine geared toward women (because we are usually the ones who take care of the health of our families). It presents useful health articles, news and tips, and occasionally I'll find a great recipe in it. A few months ago, I found a recipe for a hearty chicken and chickpea stew which is much better than it sounds, and is actually quite delicious. (I've also made a vegetarian version using vegetable broth and zucchini instead of chicken broth and chicken.)

Many book bloggers get books in the mail, myself included. Many of us get many books in the mail, which is the whole idea behind one of my favorite memes, Mailbox Monday. Do you also get magazines in the mail (or from stores), and if so, which ones?

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Usually, I go to Barnes & Noble to shop for books. This bookstore not only has a wonderful array of books, but also carries holiday cards. I ventured to my local Barnes & Noble because I remembered that last year, they carried UNICEF cards. I strongly believe in this charitable organization (and have a permanent link to UNICEF on my blog). This year, I found some UNICEF cards again at Barnes & Noble. They had a whole table full of cards, including some UNICEF cards, and many of the cards were marked 30% off. I also received a 10% discount because I have a member card. (Half-jokingly, I asked the cashier if they offered a book blogger discount. He said not at this point in time, but that you never know what the "folks back east" are thinking about doing!) Anyway, if you want to buy holiday cards I encourage you to go to Barnes & Noble and look for UNICEF cards (and maybe a book for yourself or for a gift).

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For years, I've been making a healthier version of French fries by baking sliced up potatoes with a bit of olive oil and spices in the oven. But I recently learned the "water trick" in the book Quick Vegetarian Pleasures by Jeanne Lemlin, a book I've mentioned before.  Soak clean, unpeeled, sliced potatoes (any variety, such as russet, red, or yellow) in cold water for about half an hour before you bake them. Dry them off, then add a teaspoon or two of oil and sprinkle with salt and spices.  I've been using a bit of organic oregano and chili spice but you can get as creative as you'd like.

Oven-ready healthy fries

Bake at 400º for about 40 minutes, or until desired crispness.  Flip potatoes so that they cook evenly, and check them occasionally so that they don't burn. Serve with ketchup, salsa, or your favorite dipping sauce.

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Really Random Tuesday is a way to post odds and ends--announcements, musings, quotes, photos--any blogging and book-related things you can think of. If you're inspired by this idea, feel free to copy the button and use it on your own blog. Leave a link in the comments if you’re participating and I'll add it to this post.

Please be sure to visit these other Really Random Tuesday posts:
Naida's post, NYC, lots of tasty treats and Jane Austen
Avis' post from last Tuesday, Boots, Kitty Pic, & Giveaway Winner, and from this Tuesday, Snow and Kitty Pics.

Thanks for reading!

32 comments:

  1. I don't subscribe to any magazines because I find that I just don't have time to read them. We use photo cards for our Christmas cards, but I do agree with you that UNICEF is a great organization.

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  2. I love magazines, too...especially the decorating ones. But also (my guilty pleasure) the ones that feature celebrities.

    I do get More,and enjoy it, as well as the Oprah magazine.

    Thanks for sharing...and for visiting my blog earlier.

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  3. I subscribe to probably 6 different magazines - I love them and can't get enough! And, oh man, those fries are making me hungry!

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  4. Oooo those taters look yummy LOL!

    XOXO~ Renee

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  5. I thought that was a picture of fried apples! I'm going to have to try that...

    I've posted another totally un-book-related Really Random Tuesday post. Thanks for linking to my last week's post!

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  6. I used to subscribe to a few fashion magazines but I don't do so now that I don't have any space for storing them anymore (well I'd rather use those space for my books anyway).

    Those potatoes look yummy!! (Initially I thought they were apples too!) :P

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  7. We get a variety of free magazines at work but I usually just look at pictures . I do read them in two places always: US weekly when I am at the airport, People magazine while waiting to check-out at the supermarket:)

    I have also been using photo cards the past 5 years. and I hope these cards don't become a thing of the past because of that. I find that I receive more photo cards each year.

    I will have to try the potatoes. They really taste good?

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  8. I only get a couple of magazines in the mail. I get Weight Watchers and Romantic Times. I'd rather get books than magazines.

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  9. Kathy, sometimes we do photo cards, too. The hard part is getting everyone together and then getting a good photo!

    Laurel-Rain, I also enjoy decorating magazines-- and magazines that feature celebrities. I used to have a subscription to Oprah. Thanks for your comment. :)

    Amused, wow! You get a lot of magazines. (You have a great name, BTW.)

    Renee, thanks! And thanks again for the book.

    Avis, they do look like apples! Thanks for making my Tuesday, once again.

    Melody, thanks for stopping by. I used to get fashion magazines, too. My favorite was probably Vogue.

    BookQuoter, I like photo cards, too. UNICEF may even make a frame for photo cards; if they don't they should.
    The potatoes are really good, and you can vary the seasonings to taste. Thanks again for the book!

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  10. Yvonne, your comment came in right after I responded to my previous comments! Thanks for adding your comment to the discussion. :)

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  11. I don't get any magazines in the mail, because like Bermudaonion, I just don't have the time to read them. I would like to read The New-Yorker at least once though! Also thanks for the fry recipe. It looks great and like something that my family would really love!

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  12. I love travel magazines so I regularly buy monthly copies of Outlook Traveller, a very popular mag here in India. I keep forgetting to sign up for a subscription though! Over baked French Fries sound great! Thanks for the recipe and hope you had a lovely Tuesday!

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  13. The only magazine I read from time to time is Writer's Digest (or People if there's a copy in the train station) but I don't subscribe. My husband used to subscribe to cooking magazines and they were taking over our house! But I couldn't say much, considering my overflowing book shelves.

    I love oven fries. Will have to try soaking them in water, haven't done that before.

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  14. Not a fan of magazines really though I do get three of those fairly low brow, 'real people' mags every week so that I can do the puzzles.

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  15. I get magazines too, and I don't really have time to read them. And then I don't want to get rid of them, at least not the nature ones with the lovely photos or the cooking or gardening ones, I may need something from them. I could just scan what I need and pass them on, but instead I pile them up! I've been writing a post on my magazine hording tendencies but haven't put it up yet.

    I'm going to try that potato recipe. I'm tired of mashing or baking them.

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  16. Ziblilee, at times I feel guilty because I really don't have the time to read three magazines! But I enjoy reading them when I can.

    Vashnavi, Outlook Traveller sounds wonderful. I adore travel magazines. :)

    Anna, magazines accumulate very quickly! I think soaking the sliced potatoes in cold water helps them cook better.

    Petty, my favorite puzzle is Sudoku, which is in our newspaper.

    Leslie, I hope to read your magazine post! Thanks so much for stopping by.

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  17. Oh my, you have alot of good ideas today. I have fixed potatoes like that, but, didn't know to soak them in water ahead of time. I shop at Barnes and Noble also for a lot of my books. I was shopping today at Wal-mart and picked up a book.

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  18. I enjoy reading magazines too Suko. I'm not subscribed to any at the moment but I'm a sucker for The Rolling Stone issues, depending on who's on the cover. I also like crochet magazines.
    Prevention does sound like a good one as does the New Yorker.
    The Unicef cards look very nice, and for a great cause.
    Those potatoe fries look sooo good!
    http://thebookworm07.blogspot.com/

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  19. I'm just zipping around the blogosphere, reminding bloggers...If you have read any wonderful literary books
    published in 2010, I urge you to nominate your favorites
    for The Independent Literary Awards. The awards
    include categories of Literary Fiction and Literary Non-Fiction.

    I'm especially interested in having some great nominees for nonfiction!

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  20. Magazines are kind of sore spot in our house right now. We got these offers to get all these free subscriptions for our unused airline miles and ended up getting way too many magazines and now we can't keep up with them. Of all of them, I like Real Simple the best. They always have something I find interesting.

    And boy I wish there was a book blogger discount!

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  21. Your oven fries look amazing! I love the way they look with the flecks of spices. You've inspired me to take a break my freezer fries!

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  22. Gigi Ann, I find books at (too) many shops! Thanks for your comment. :)

    Naida, there are many good magazines out there, aren't there?! I know what you mean about Rolling Stone--I am the same way. :)

    readerbuzz, I'll think about who I'd like to nominate for those awards.

    Jenners, I like Real Simple, too. It's a great mag (hope that doesn't sound too cas!)

    Charley, thanks! I hope you will make them because they are real food and so easy to make --you can spice them up to your heart's content.

    Thanks for all the wonderful comments. More welcomed.

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  23. Those Frenchies look awesome. I want to eat them now :)
    We have subscribed to The Week; It is all about India (politics, movies etc); we did initially subscribe because of my sister, but when she left we continued ti :) I don't read it though, don't have the time :-|

    Will definitely look for those cards here as well!

    Have a good week ahead :)

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  24. Although writing/reading books is my first love, I prefer to carry magazines when I'm flying.

    The Nation is a good one to help you keep your sanity during these hard times.

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  25. I have never tried baking potatoes that way!!! I am excited, I'm going to try this. We love love french fries and I'm always looking for healthier recipes so I'm definitely going to do this.
    I don't have magazine subscriptions but I do get the digital versions of the womens mags & the gossip mags. I used to get the Bookmark magazine and I loved it! I may have to leave hints for that for my birthday. hehee
    ttfn,
    Natalie ;0)

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  26. Veens, that is cute that you call them "Frenchies". I will start calling them by that name, too. :)

    Shelley, The Nation sounds like a good magazine.

    Natalie, I don't think I've ever heard of Bookmark the magazine before. You'd think I had, as a book blogger. I need to Google it soon.

    Thanks for all the comments!

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  27. I don't know what's up with me and magazines, but there's something about them I just don't like. I can't bring myself to read them. I'd rather sit in a waiting room doing nothing if I've forgotten my book than to read a magazine. Strange, huh?

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  28. Didn't know the New Yorker has physical magazine. For some weird reason I thought it's just online. *shame* I rarely read magazines, because I usually find them a bit unsatisfying, like short burts of information rather than in-depth like book does. Doesn't mean it's bad of course!

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  29. Amanda, it sounds as if magazines aren't your cup of tea. I always expect a different sort of comment from you. :)

    Mee, I view magazines as light entertainment or as sources for ideas. I don't compare them to books.

    Thanks for all the comments. More are welcomed.

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  30. I like magazines as well and often save a few months and browse them all together. Oprah, Real Simple; Cooking Light and Prevention are my favorites.

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  31. Diane, I like all of the magazines you've mentioned. :)

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  32. I'm getting hungry just looking at this!!

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