Aperol Grapefruit Margarita
As you can see, things look a teensy bit different around here today, and all I can say is…HALLELUJAH.
It feels surreal that this blog has now been around for well over seven years. (How? I am old now?!) I started it on a whim while I was maiming myself enrolled at Le Cordon Bleu with no goal in mind other than to share a few culinary school tips and tricks and entertain my friends—who I assumed would be the only people interested in reading it. And for a long time, they were.
To put it mildly, this site wasn’t exactly a magnet for discerning readers back in 2011. Domesticate-moi.blogspot.com had a Pepto pink background (there may have even been polka dots at one point) and celebrated improperly cooked chicken, burnt sweet potato fries, and “vegetable tian” alongside blurry Blackberry photos that likely induced nausea rather than hunger. The somewhat random posts were extremely informal, irreverent, and very, very ME. Most can still be found in the archives should you ever wish to entertain yourself or need a good reminder that we all have to start somewhere. And by “somewhere,” I clearly mean the bottom. The very, very bottom.
In short, the blog served its purpose as a virtual diary and creative outlet, and that was good enough for me.
Post LCB graduation, I moved back to NYC (and in with my roommate) avec ZERO idea what to do with my life. The blog wasn’t really a priority—I posted a handful of recipes in 2012 while juggling a number of odd jobs from restaurant hosting to private chef-ing—and I remember being genuinely shocked when I opened Google Analytics for the first time at the end of 2012 and saw that there were more than 20 people visiting. Not long after that, I received my first email from a reader who had made one of my recipes with great success, and the rest is history. I was clearly on the verge of my big break. I had 5k unique views a month and fan mail. Food Network and/or Maxim were sure to call any day!!!
My cooking show and sexy photo shoot didn’t pan out (yet…), but the knowledge that I was entertaining even a handful of people with my stories and recipes was the kick in the ass I needed to start taking the blog more seriously. I researched how to write a recipe properly, worked on my testing skills, taught myself how to use my roommate’s DSLR, and began posting regularly.
Slowwwly but surely, people started showing up on the reg. And in the summer of 2013, Domesticate Me got its first professional upgrade. I couldn’t have been more excited (this post really captures my pride and giddiness), and I have to say, it was a pretty badass moment for this weird blog lady.
The blog grew exponentially after that facelift, and somewhere along the line it became my priority, while my other odd jobs became the side hustles. The best part? I’ve gotten to know so many readers through comments, and emails, and DMs over the years, and I’m perpetually in awe of the fact that I seem to have created a small but mighty tribe of the smartest, funniest, coolest people on the Internet. (You know you are.)
And we’ve shared a lot of good times together. The birth of the Dude Diet. The first quinoa bake. Cocktails and Confessions! Some of you have been with me through multiple moves, a wedding, and the writing of (almost) two books. We’ve talked a lot about food, cooking, and recipes, and more recently, we’ve started conversations about other things that I’m passionate about—like mental health, skincare, and #fitnessjourney—which feels really, really good.
With that said, for the past year or so, the site itself has felt “off” to me. A little stale, a little dated, a lot frustrating to use. My blog was stuck wearing low-rise flares when it should be donning high-waisted skinnies, if you catch my drift. I wanted to make the space better for you (and for myself), so I found a fabulous all female branding and design agency, and we got the ball rolling on this fancy new space back in January.
I feel like this site is a better reflection of who I am today and where I want to go in the future. It’s cleaner, better organized (after all, I am a woman who hangs her pants now), and more professional, yes, but I like to think it’s still very, very ME.
So, without further ado, welcome to the new digs!! Lemme quickly hit you with the highlights…
If you check out the navigation bar in the header, you’ll notice there are some new things happening. You can now browse either recipe OR lifestyle posts and search easily within each category. Food posts now allow you to jump directly to the recipe on days you’d like to skip my rambling (no judgment), and the recipes themselves are easily printable. You’ll notice that at the bottom of all blog posts, there is also an option to “shop this post.” Going forward, I’ll do my best to link products talked about or used in the recipe/photos in case you’re curious or would like to snag them for yourself.
Speaking of shopping…I HAVE MY VERY OWN VIRTUAL SHOP!!!
Not gonna lie, I’m psychotically pumped about the shop because all of my tried-and-true products—from cookware to face wash—can now be found in one place. So, if you’re ever wondering where my plates are from, can’t remember the name of the face serum I’m always raving about on Instagram, or aren’t sure where to buy Vital Proteins, you can just head on over to the shop and find everything there.
I wish someone was here to chest bump me right now.
In honor of this momentous occasion, I made us a celebratory cocktail. An Aperol Grapefruit Margarita to be exact. It’s fresh, herbal and delightfully strong, and while it’s perfect for summer sipping, it’s truly a seasonless wonder. I hope you’ll treat yourself to several in the near future (and maybe pour one out for me).
On that note, here’s to many more years of good food, good living, good laughs, and shameless oversharing! I’m unbelievably happy you’re here. And to the OG readers in the back, I SEE YOU. In fact, I’ve become pretty tight virtual friends with some of you, which is strange and wonderful and means more to me than I can express in the last paragraph of this outrageously long post. I appreciate you. You’re the reason I show up. (Virtual koala hug.)
Love you, mean it.
Your Weird Blog Lady
p.s. I imagine there will be plenty of hiccups in this launch process, so if you stumble across any issues, drop me a line, and I’ll get on it ASAP. Oh, and we lost some emails in the switch to a new subscription platform, so you may want to subscribe again to make sure you get alerts. (FYI, you now get a festive free ebook of my favorite weeknight dinners when you subscribe. Free shit rules!)
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