My Weird Night in the World’s Biggest Potato Hotel

Tenth Helpings is a humor column from our culture critic, Ella Quittner, illustrated by Olivia de Recat.

I know a place where you can go to be alone. It’s got a roof over it, with a door that locks. There’s a bed and a sink and a kettle for coffee, …

Tenth Helpings is a humor column from our culture critic, Ella Quittner, illustrated by Olivia de Recat.


I know a place where you can go to be alone. It’s got a roof over it, with a door that locks. There’s a bed and a sink and a kettle for coffee, and from most angles, the land on which it sits is stunningly green, and stunningly flat. The packaged snacks are free and abundant, and there is a rabbit who hops around the property as if he hadn’t yet decided what he’d get up to that day. There is a cow named Dolly who will wander by, shooting you reproachful glances until you acquiesce and stick your hand beneath the dispenser that overflows with edible pellets. Her gratitude will make you blush. It is the place where I began and ended one of the weirdest nights of my life, and it is a six-ton potato, thirty minutes southeast of Boise, Idaho.

Read More >>

How to Take a Cheese Plate on the Go

Whether you’re camping, road-tripping, picnicking, or spending time at the beach, a cheese plate by your side is always a welcome snack. I might be biased, but I love enjoying a plethora of great cheese and cured meat in any scenery, all year round. Ho…

Whether you’re camping, road-tripping, picnicking, or spending time at the beach, a cheese plate by your side is always a welcome snack. I might be biased, but I love enjoying a plethora of great cheese and cured meat in any scenery, all year round. However, my typical, carefully designed plates aren’t exactly simple to transport, especially when planning to enjoy them on the go. To keep your beautiful, cheesy creations intact outside the confines of your home, here are six tips.

1. Pick a Secure Base

When you’re out and about, forget about fancy platters or boards. I like to build my cheese plate directly in a wide reusable container or to-go box (you can even find boxes made specifically for this use). This way, everything is packed in and ready to eat once you arrive at your destination. It takes some extra work to bring all of the items separately to build on the spot, so arranging the plate beforehand saves a lot of time and eliminates the need for excess supplies, like a cutting board, sharp knife, and extra food packaging.

Read More >>

How I ‘Traveled’ During the Pandemic Without Actually Going Anywhere

I’m used to living out of a suitcase, unpacking only to pack for another trip and finding receipts in foreign languages in my bag. All that stopped during the pandemic, among many other things. After the initial rush to buy soap, hand sanitizer, and pa…

I’m used to living out of a suitcase, unpacking only to pack for another trip and finding receipts in foreign languages in my bag. All that stopped during the pandemic, among many other things. After the initial rush to buy soap, hand sanitizer, and pantry items, I found myself cancelling trips, storing my suitcase in the basement, and unpacking clothes into my closet.

On one hand, I was grateful that I had more time to spend with my husband at home and regularly call my family and friends; on the other, I was disappointed that I had to cancel plans—none of which, of course, compared to the terrible news I’d watch and read about the pandemic day in and day out.

Read More >>

7 Travel Toiletries That Will Never Leak—Seriously

As someone who used to travel at least once a month domestically or internationally before the pandemic, I’ve perfected the art of packing. Rolling my clothes, using packing cubes, wearing my heaviest shoes—yeah, I’ve done it all. But my favorite trick…

As someone who used to travel at least once a month domestically or internationally before the pandemic, I’ve perfected the art of packing. Rolling my clothes, using packing cubes, wearing my heaviest shoes—yeah, I’ve done it all. But my favorite trick that has gotten me through TSA in record time? Solid travel toiletries.

While mini bottles of shampoo and body wash are cute, you’ll look at them differently when they leak all over your luggage. Now you have to clean your favorite silk dress and you don’t have nice shampoo. It’s an annoying situation to be in no matter if you’re in California or Costa Rica, and one that I avoid with solid toiletries like shampoo powder and cleansing balms.

Read More >>

7 Tricks for a Perfectly Packed Suitcase, Every Time

Packing light is a sport. Or at least, that’s how I justify being so sweaty at the end of an avid bout.

And between carry-on size restrictions, the avoidance of baggage fees, and an inescapable series of pre-vacation premonitions of me buried under a …

Packing light is a sport. Or at least, that's how I justify being so sweaty at the end of an avid bout.

And between carry-on size restrictions, the avoidance of baggage fees, and an inescapable series of pre-vacation premonitions of me buried under a mountain of sensible walking shoes with not a single clean sock in sight, it's not exactly one I'll volunteer to play.

Read More >>

Best Restaurants in Salt Lake City

We live in Salt Lake City, Utah and often get asked for restaurant recommendations. Today, we are sharing the BEST restaurants in SLC. These are our personal favorite restaurants in the city, all of the best spots for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dess…

We live in Salt Lake City, Utah and often get asked for restaurant recommendations. Today, we are sharing the BEST restaurants in SLC. These are our personal favorite restaurants in the city, all of the best spots for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert! These restaurants are our tried and true places to go when we…

The post Best Restaurants in Salt Lake City appeared first on Two Peas & Their Pod.

The Ultimate Pre-Vacation Checklist for Your Entire House

If summer 2020—and, let’s face it, half of summer 2021—was about staying local, the rest of the northern hemisphere’s season in the sun could be about traveling. All of those earmarked, daydreamed trips to Italy, Mexico, or even just upstate New York a…

If summer 2020—and, let’s face it, half of summer 2021—was about staying local, the rest of the northern hemisphere’s season in the sun could be about traveling. All of those earmarked, daydreamed trips to Italy, Mexico, or even just upstate New York are now finally doable, and we’re gauging how we feel about it all. We’re casually checking the expiration dates on our passports and spending plenty of on-the-clock hours finding great deals on flights and hotels, so the planning part, at least, can start.

But what about our homes? Those shelters that kept us safe from all of the unknowns of the past 17 months deserve more than a curt wave when we finally decide to jet out the front door. There are things to prepare it for, no matter how long you might be away. We don’t need to remind you that a pile of uncollected mail is one of the main ways potential burglars know that no one is at home.

Read More >>

10 Travel Mugs That Keep Coffee Hot or Cold (With or Without the Travel)

Even though many of us are still in limbo due to the pandemic, one thing that remains constant is our need for coffee. It’s a non-negotiable for us, the fuel to start the day, boost our productivity, and keep us going—that is, until it runs cold.

Here…

Even though many of us are still in limbo due to the pandemic, one thing that remains constant is our need for coffee. It’s a non-negotiable for us, the fuel to start the day, boost our productivity, and keep us going—that is, until it runs cold.

Here’s where travel mugs come in. Yes, we know they’ve got “travel” in the name but they’ll still keep your coffee at the perfect temperature whether you’re working at home or commuting. No more room temperature coffee, or worse—microwaving your mug.

Read More >>

A Local’s Guide to the Best Food in Rhode Island

When it comes to summer in New England, there’s really no place better than my home state of Rhode Island. I may be an extremely biased travel guide, but it’s true:

With over 400 miles of shoreline, the smallest state in the nation has no shortage of …

When it comes to summer in New England, there’s really no place better than my home state of Rhode Island. I may be an extremely biased travel guide, but it’s true:

With over 400 miles of shoreline, the smallest state in the nation has no shortage of beaches. You can swing by the Tennis Hall of Fame for a match or plan an idyllic tailgate picnic at Newport Polo. Stroll down winding paths, wander under footbridges, or catch a gondola down three rivers to immerse yourself in Barnaby Evans' sculpture of 80 bonfires that light downtown Providence at Waterfire. None of that sounds appealing? You can always take a ferry to Block Island for a cocktail by the sea or venture to Watch Hill to scope out Taylor Swift’s mansion.

Read More >>

The One Surprising Thing Our Home Editors Never Travel Without

I absolutely love things specifically designed for travel—my carry-on with a built-in portable charger, my favorite duffel with all its specialized pockets and essential trolley pass (which attaches the bag to the handle of a carryon), my monogrammed l…

I absolutely love things specifically designed for travel—my carry-on with a built-in portable charger, my favorite duffel with all its specialized pockets and essential trolley pass (which attaches the bag to the handle of a carryon), my monogrammed leather passport holder, and my packing cubes, of course. Not only are they ultra-functional, but I also love thinking about the purposeful engineering behind each one—all the R&D that went into making our travel experiences less stressful.

Oddly enough, among all these hyper-specialized items, the one thing I absolutely can’t travel without? A wee bottle of laundry detergent.

Read More >>