1. I remember the first time my husband told me he liked Cream of Wheat. My face looked the way a gag feels. How I managed to love him in spite of his affinity for the breakfast sludge is a testament to what his toned forearms and chiseled jawline do for me. It’s a consistency thing. Oatmeal, chia pudding, Cream of Wheat, bananas … they all feel pre-chewed to me. Until Hank brought home this Think Thin Protein Oatmeal. Now, I fell hard for the Farmer’s Market Berry Crumble flavor and have yet to branch beyond it, but all the flavors sound tempting. It’s got quinoa and steel-cut oats and it’s just what your belly ordered for winter mornings. 2. OK, so let’s just get it out there: Empire is the shit. Cookie is the shit. The music of Empire is the shit. After a sweet friend, who has an impeccable viewing record, urged me to give in to the hype and just start it, “Oh my gosh, it really is that good …” she said, and another friend upped its cred with, “You know it’s based on the story of King Lear,” I began dating the show on Hulu. It’s always that third episode that really plants the hook. I put a sleeping bag down in the Lyons’ den and wasn’t going anywhere. I love how it constantly flirts with vulgarity and violence, but rarely actually goes there (If you watch, you know when it went it really did go there). My 33-year-old-mother-of-three ass feels cool for being up on the storyline and, let’s face it, Cookie’s one liners and insane outfits force our affection, and I dare you not to be fascinated with the dynamic between her and Lucious. And the latest plot line with Marisa Tomei’s character … Boo Boo Kitty, please … 3. True confession, I pulled 3 empty, worn Ziplock bags out of my purse yesterday. This was the greased up evidence I didn’t even need to see to confirm what I’ve known for weeks now. I am addicted to Buddha Bowl Himalayan Pink popcorn. I have to have it. First of all, like 3 cups of it are well under 200 calories, and it only contains coconut oil, organic popcorn and the Himalayan pink salt. That’s it. No crazy crap and it tastes like perfect little popped clouds of flavor. Just buy it. But not if you live near me because I can’t let my supply dry up. 4. Let’s talk about The World Needs More Love Letters and get everyone on this planet involved, shall we? Some big-hearted, beautiful individual named Hannah Brencher (she wrote a book explaining her mission) decided that nothing lifts the soul more when it’s down than a handwritten love letter, even if it’s from a stranger. There are a few elements to this site that pulled me right down the rabbit hole. First, they feature random love letters found in various locations by various strangers. They’re unbelievably thoughtful, some of them, especially considering these messages are being jotted down and tossed out into the wide open universe. It could be picked up by your neighbor, or it could be picked up by someone visiting from across the country, but they all feel so personal. Just browse a few. But the other element of this project, the one that cranked up my vapors, is the deliberate love letters. Friends, family members are caregivers share the stories of people in their lives who are down or feeling empty, and the crew at The World Needs More Love Letters post the ones they select every few weeks and open it up to submissions. Perfect strangers from all corners of this earth will read a fellow human’s struggle and take the time to sit down and compose an encouraging, compassionate, you-got-this message for them. I’m sure I’m late to the game and people are super familiar with Ms. Brencher’s project, but I wasn’t and I read for at least an hour. It restored my faith in our species. I suggest you check it out and get a little of the same. Maybe even write a letter. 5. If I was crushing on Amy Poehler after reading her book, I am at full blown stalker status now that I’m nearing the end of Parks and Recreation. But it’s not just Amy now, it’s all of her friends, too. Just this video, all day, please. Or, wait, no this one when she got half a perm. Or the one with the ice or the one where they backed into the memorial service during Leslie’s campaign or Snake juice for sure, or maybe I should have just done a post on Parks and Recreation. Just put on your sweat pants make a dent in the couch and plow through it. I have 4 episodes left and I can’t let it end.