Aly's Newsletter: Hump Day Edition
Happy Hump Day!
Would everyone be OK with me taking a moment to chat about royal things?
It comes as no surprise to anyone who has ever met me, but I'm obsessed with all things royal family and royal history. I've read all the history, seen all the series and films, and chat about monarchs from several centuries ago in the same familiar way others may discuss a friend they had dinner with last Tuesday.
For that reason, I have some great difficulty not judging a lot of the royalty-related films that come out. I've sat through many Hallmark movies where a pastry chef from Des Moines randomly runs into the prince of Monrovia at a baking competition and they find love while searching for the last bag of gluten-free flour and I've been so distracted by the mis-use of everything from protocol to royal title stylings, the film ended up being endlessly frustrating for me.
See also: All three Harry & Meghan movies on Lifetime. I watched them, obviously. But I gritted my teeth... a lot. Same, too, for many other series and movies that got a lot of media attention but also completely rewrote history. I also have a lot of inner dialogue every few months or years when there’s some breaking news that puts the royals on the forefront of the news, and all the people on social media who don’t have an opinion or interest the other 11 months of the year suddenly think they know everything about all the things. And usually get a lot of it wrong. It’s a lot.
So, last night when I popped open my Hulu page and saw Spencer was now streaming, I was a little hesitant. I had pretty low expectations, to be honest. But they did an amazing job. I especially appreciated the parallels they drew between Diana and Anne Boleyn. (Fun Aly fact: I am obsessed with Anne Boleyn history and read about her endlessly.)
So, for any of the other royal geeks out there, watch it! You won't be sorry!
In other news, I also watched Tinder Swindler last night, and ....let us never talk about it again. It was so upset I had to take a second shower after watching. Seriously, what is wrong with humanity?
Here's what I'm working on today:
For Clean Plates, I'm working on a roundup of the healthiest, best-tasting peanut butters and almond butters you can buy. (Two different stories - one on peanut butter, one on almond butter.) This is in the same sort of format as the chicken soup story I just did, so I'm looking for nutritionists to weigh in re: what to look for in both of these products, but also some good ones to buy and why. Also open to products for me to taste and evaluate.
For these two stories, I'm veering toward organic-only, with a focus on peanut butters with the least amount of added stuff in them (peanuts + salt is a great recipe for peanut butter, after all). If there is added stuff — which is needed for some flavors, of course — I want to make sure all the ingredients are top-notch, and if it's a sweet peanut butter (honey peanut butter or maple peanut butter) to make sure it uses top-notch ingredients and is relatively less sweet compared to the competition, etc. These are the categories I'm focusing on: salted, unsalted, crunchy, honey peanut butter, powdered (not my thing personally, but people love it for smoothies), "fun" flavors (maple-cinnamon, etc) - if you have a credible nutritionist (who is not tied to a brand) to weigh in, please email me!
For any of these stories, please start a new email thread and email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here's what has published since yesterday:
Have a great day!