Ah, yes. 2020. What a year, am I right?
It’s the type of year that I foresee becoming a part of our everyday colloquialisms. “That’s so 2020 of you!” “What a 2020 of a mess this is!” “Don’t be so 2020….”
I’ll wager a bet that your life was upended in more ways than one. Mine was too. Rather than carry on about what I’ve lost, I want to share something I’ve gained: writing.
I’ve always enjoyed writing. In college, I’d take a 20 page research paper on how free market policies helped Rwanda find economic recovery (that one was quite interesting) over a massive exam any day. After graduating, I dabbled in more journalistic writing, mostly for my hometown newspaper. My favorite articles were The Real Questions About Guns (click HERE) and The Economic Pros of Same-Sex Marriage (click HERE); both pushed the buttons of typical small town America ideals, which gave me a thrill.
But I kept most of my writing to myself.
And then I started The Frugal Foodies! In the beginning, I stuck to informative content focused on the NYC food scene. With COVID, the NYC lockdown, the realization that I’d never be able to compete with the bigger food-centric blogs, and my desperate need for a creative outlet, I decided to start “Chew On This;” a section of the blog where I explore my curiosities, self-discoveries, and experiences. I’m a sucker for controversial conversations, and I much prefer chatting about the black market for kidneys than the weather; what better way to do that than a blog?!
Writing gives me a sense of Zen because it provides me with a medium to make sense of the jumbled mess of words in my head. Verbalizing what’s happening in my noggin has never been my strong suit, but writing allows me to rearrange the maelstrom of thoughts into coherent sentences.
My subpar ability to verbally communicate is also why I love dance. The body has an uncanny way of expressing emotions and telling a story in a way words never can.
In fact, writing and dance are similar in more ways than one:
- Both serve as a means for self-exploration.
- Both require discipline and dedication.
- Both rely on creativity and thoughtfulness.
- Both lead to a product that can be consumed by the reader/spectator, which means you have to put yourself out on a platter and be prepared for raving reviews or heart-breaking critiques.
- Both can be a total drag and seem like a chore, but both can also be incredibly fulfilling and satisfying.
It was a big year of finding my voice, challenging my capabilities, and honing in on my skills as a writer. So, I’d like to share my favorite Frugal Foodies posts I wrote this year!
This was my first time branching away from food-centered writing. I intended on writing a post about my elephant experience in Thailand, but as I dived into the research, I learned about how truly heinous elephant tourism is. I hope you learn something… I certainly did.
This is the first Frugal Foodies post that has absolutely nothing to do with being frugal or food, but it does have something to do with being an informed traveler. I hope you enjoy and learn something new! Elephant tourism has exploded in Thailand, and tourists line up to ride the gentle giants for a…
The Black Lives Matter protests sparked by the murder of George Floyd was a defining period in 2020. The concept of racism makes my stomach uneasy, the behaviors of individuals in the police force and government were appalling, and the inherent biases imbedded in the laws and customs in the US makes me red with rage. I wanted to add something to the conversation, and while it was challenging to research and write, I am proud of the final product.
Perhaps the answer to equality needs to start with looking in the mirror.
I am constantly grappling with my thoughts on social media, namely Instagram. It can be a great tool for small businesses to advertise, but it can also be misleading. It’s kind of like online dating, and this post describes the time I was catfished by some delectable looking cookies.
Social media is a double edge sword. It can be an amazing resource for new discoveries while having the potential to lead to culinary letdowns based on pictures that don’t accurately represent that food. Click here to see if THICC Cookie lived up to the photos!
These two posts took an incredible amount of time, reflection, and energy to write. However, both are about being an artist, and both got an incredible response from friends and acquaintances saying, “You just put my brain into words!” I’m not the only one who has a hard time making sense of thoughts and feelings, and being able to be a voice for other artists struggling through COVID was extremely gratifying.
New York City has taken me on quite the journey. It’s been amazing, terrible, uplifting, and defeating. And I’d do it all again.
The things that are “essential” allow provide food for the body, the things that are “nonessential” provide food for the soul. Here is a case for why my profession is “real.”
This post was a whirlwind to write. I went in expecting to write something on how it’s not right to punish a franchise for the ideals of the big guys up top, but what I discovered lead to something completely different.
Should you really eat more chicken? Click here to learn about where Chick-fil-A is putting it’s dollars… the answer may surprise you.
Thank you for being a Frugal Foodies reader! It has been exciting and fun to join a community of bloggers, and I am looking forward to what’s to come in 2021 🙂
While those were my top 5 Frugal Foodies blog posts of 2020, here are a few runner ups if you’re hungry for more:
My grandma, Mary Kowalski, is a tough as nails 97 year old polish woman who rings in at 4’6” just shy of 100 lbs with a passion for Jesus, fasciation with blue sky, and love for dancing and music. She often exclaims “you know what? I’m going to die soon!” to which I respond, “Good! The Lord…
Do you know why red meat is red? Find out here.
What does “The World Is My Oyster!” really mean? Hint: It’s not what you think!
What makes french fries “French?” Both France and Belgian claim to be the inventors of the french fry, and I dive into both sides to find out who is right!