Welcome to Hill Reeves, a blog where I write about the things I cook and bake in NYC.

Reach me at Hill.Reeves@gmail.com

Happy Birthday, Blog!

Matt and Vin
Matt and Vin

Arancini was supposed to be the blog entry dedicated to my good friend Vincenza. She told me it was her favorite meal, but when I went to put it on  my calendar (since I cook these meals every Sunday), arancini day just happened to land on my birthday. So, Vinnie's dinner got sort of hijacked by my turning 24. We'll have to do another meal and story all about my beautiful, kind and smart friend!

It was sort of a good thing though because arancini is a great way to feed a crowd. A few of my best friends stopped by for the night with presents, cake, donuts, prosciutto, flowers and other delightful birthday miscellany in tow. I loved turning 24 with them all!

Can and Mer
Can and Mer

So, allow me to save my stories about Sicilian rice balls and the other delicious Italian foods that Vinnie's introduced me to for her upcoming post. Instead, I figured I'd try and reflect on some of the things I've learned over the past year-- not only did I turn a year older, but did you know that this week also marks the first birthday of my blog? What sort of wisdom can I share as a now-24-year-old with a 1-year-old blog? Let's find out.

Dan and Rich
Dan and Rich

1. When you think you hate peas, just put them in something delicious, like arancini, and you'll probably reconsider.

2. If you want to improve your Candy Crush skills, ask the fourth grader that you babysit for tips.

3. Resist the urge to apply TV plot lines to real life. (I recently became convinced that a friend had been hiding his prosthetic leg from me after watching Orange is the New Black. Whoops-- SPOILER ALERT!)

4. You know that rule about drinking a glass of water before you indulge in a snack because you're probably not hungry, you're probably just thirsty? Also apply that technique to text messaging.

5. Never tell someone you think is cute, "you remind me of someone" because everyone sees right through that and knows it's just a lame way to strike up a conversation with someone you think is cute.

6. Don't make promises you can't keep like, "Dan I'll NEVER bite my nails again if we go and get some Chubby Hubby right now."

7. You should never apologize for liking One Direction, but also listen to some, like, jazz or hipster stuff so that your Spotify account speaks to your well-roundedness.

8. Saying mean things can always hurt someone, so refrain. Even if you think Elizabeth Hurley is never going to see your tweet about how awkward her guest starring role was on Gossip Girl, it's just not worth it.

9. Lying about celebrity sightings is uncool, but if you see Tony Danza on the street, it's OK to tell your more judgey friends that you met him, cause how would they know?

10. Okra is just gross.

11. Draw strength from famous people who have the same name as you (Hillary Clinton, Keanu Reeves...).

12. Believe everything your mom told you, but also Google some stuff just in case.

13. Spell people's names right. Conversely, if you have a name that's hard to spell, or easy to mess up, learn how to throw a bone.

14. If you buy donuts for the office, you absolutely have dibs on the last one, but don't assume that everyone knows that rule and hide it if you have to.

15. Always read your credit card statements.

16. If, your whole life, people have said to you, "Hillary stop singing!!" And then you find a roommate/boyfriend/girlfriend who likes it when you sing, then he/she is probably a keeper.

17. Never overstate your  knowledge of something highbrow, like opera, especially to impress someone else, because haven't you ever watched a sitcom?

18. Soda is empty calories and diet soda will give you meth teeth because sometimes life ain't fair.

19. Every time your rewards points go to waste, an angel loses its wings.

20. Stop convincing yourself that it's a good idea to cut your own bangs.

21. Bottom-of-the-bag fries are always fair game.

22. Don't name your kid after a song or a celebrity unless there's some proven staying power (like 15+ years and still going strong).

23. If you want a really great roast beef sandwich, you need to go to Long Island. I'm sorry, but we're not even going to have this discussion.

24. Make sure you don't tell people that you're having a "quarter-life crisis" until you're at LEAST 25 because otherwise you're throwing it out into the universe that you plan on dying before  your centennial.

Birthday Cake
Birthday Cake

Anyway, I'll post a real arancini recipe later in the week, but thanks for indulging my birthday silliness. And thank you all for making my 23rd year so special. It truly was one of the best years yet! (For anyone who came to my 9th birthday pony party, you know why that's hard to top.) I can't thank each of you enough for reading and eating with me!!

Arancini (Sicilian Rice Balls)

My Favorite Upper West Side Restaurants