Starbucks and Living Wage

We live in Illinois. We love our baristas beyond measure. They certainly are a part of our life and our routine Monday, Wednesday, Friday. But here is a problem and it is a big one. It bugs me quite a bit actually. Starbucks baristas aren’t teens. They are adults. Some of them adults who are forced to live with their parents because of their low wages. Some raising kids. Yes, Starbucks has great benefits. They claim responsibility. But, it isn’t a job you can live on here.

Most of our baristas have 2, 3, 4 jobs to pay off student loans, to make rent, to just make it. They start out filling in at every store in the area. Then they get another job and another job and another job.

You know where that leads? It leads to unhappy baristas. It is a hard job in and of itself (seriously–have you ever considered the three ring circus that a busy Starbucks creates?) Have you seen a barista injured? Have you considered what standing in water and spilled milk does to your feet? Or the shoulder pain from lifting things from over your head over and over every day?

It’s real. And yet, these hard-working baristas go on to work another job or two just to make ends meet. Not fair. I know there is a profit margin that needs to be met. But I am pretty sure that our $12.00 plus order could cover a raise for all the employees and managers. I love these young people. I see my children in them. I love the older ones too. But you shouldn’t have to work your way up to district manager to make a living wage.

Happy Sock Day

On this day in 2001, you surprised me by declaring your love. I surprised you by spending the day building my first website for you. Proving I could do it all by myself. (ok–that and sending a million emails that you didn’t get because back in the day there was no mail on cell phones and driving Food Julia crazy)

Today you surprised me again, with a movie and dinner outing. Not only that–you drank cocktails! 2. A first in these many years. It was a special, extravagant movie outing–not run of the mill.

And as I type this–I realize that in these years you’ve made it so I don’t have to prove I don’t need any help and that I spend more time declaring my love.

Happy strange perfect anniversary my love. Happy sock day.

My Secret Foodie Life

Mama is out of town. I am sure she thinks that Denise and I are eating out at ALL THE PLACES we never take her to while she is gone. Mama will be out of town until May 1. She’s been gone since March 24. Sum total of eating out: I think we drove through McDonalds once. We ordered pizza/pasta in for the kids last night but we do that when they are here on Thursday nights anyway and they won’t be here this Thursday.

So I am cooking up a storm, right? No. Tonight I am having–soggy cereal. I mixed up three kinds for variety because I have had cereal night several times. Denise will be eating leftover pizza. Other fab meals have included microwaved veggie burgers and egg sandwiches. Instant mashed potatoes. No meals at all.

Yes, we live it up while she’s gone.

How to Make Rice Krispies Treats

Real Rice Krispies TreatI’ve been informed that our history is being lost through adulteration of Rice Krispies treats. I find this a shame because I LOVE homemade (and homemade only) Rice Krispies Treats. Unfortunately, I tend to make a mess of it and I really only want one. I would love to figure out a “rice Krispies treat in a mug recipe.” Maybe I will play with that idea.

Anyhow, before the original recipe gets lost to time–here you go. How to Make REAL Rice Krispies Treats

How to Make Rice Krispies Treats


  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 (10 oz., about 40) pkg. regular marshmallows or 3 cups miniature marshmallows
  • 6 cups Kellogg's Rice Krispies cereal


  1. In a large saucepan, melt butter over low heat. Add the marshmallows and continue to stir until the marshmallows have completely melted. Remove from heat.
  2. Stir in the Kellogg's Rice Krispies-coating them well with the melted marshmallow mixture
  3. Butter a 9 x13 pan REALLY well. Seriously. Butter well. Don't use spray. Use softened butter or margarine. This is what makes them so good.
  4. Butter a spatula or large spoon. Spread Rice Krispies Marshmallow mixture in 9 x13 pan. Smash them evenly in the pan.
  5. Cut into squares (using buttered knife) when they cool.
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