real talk: getting sentimental up in here

Yup. This is about to happen. Deal with it. Embrace it. Love it.

I met Joy the Baker yesterday.

Wait. Let me just repeat that one more time. I MET JOY THE BAKER YESTERDAY!!!

(Apologies for the obnoxious use of caps. Totally necessary, though.)


Joy has a major online presence in the food blogging world, so I am sure many of you are, at the very least, familiar with her name. But for me, (queue cheesiness – annnnnnnnnnnnd go!) Joy and her blog have their own special significance. (See! I warned ya!)

This’ll require some back-tracking.

I’m really weird when it comes to recipes. As a general rule, I hate following them. Why? Because, totally admittedly, I’m selfish and like to have complete propriety and ownership of my own recipe. Several summers ago, I went to bake a chocolate root beer cake and, of course, didn’t even so much as look at any similar recipes. What were you thinking, girl? Gotta educate yourself on these things! Needless to say, the cake was a complete flop – gummy, dense, tasteless.

I have never been so happy to have made a disaster of a recipe. This was probably the luckiest failure I’ve had.

After tasting the cake and acknowledging how terrible it was, I took to the internet and googled “root beer cake.” And that’s how this little gem fell into my lap.

I must’ve spent a minimum of two hours on her site that day, not to mention the countless hours I’ve spent there since. I loved her writing voice, all-around quirkiness, eye-catching photos, and, of course, the recipes. It was inspiring.

Several months later, The Moonlight Baker® was born. My first post? A recipe adapted from one of Joy’s.

(Side note: At that point, I was still learning how to use WordPress and kept re-publishing my post as it was in progress, rather than just saving drafts. I can’t imagine how many annoying, unnecessary ping-backs she must’ve gotten because of that one post. Ooops!)

Last February when Joy’s book was released, I ordered it right away despite the fact that I was living in a dorm that did not have a kitchen. When it arrived, I immediately picked it up from the mail-room, returned to my room, and read through it cover-to-cover. (And believe me, I am by no means a reader!)

This book has traveled with me since – to New York, and back to Boston this fall.


I wound up packing the 3 cookbooks traveling back to Boston with me in my safe, for the sake of saving space. But just before I closed the lid, I thought to take this picture. Unintentionally symbolic. That’s what this is.

Joy’s book is no longer in the safe. I keep it on the window ledge by my bed (I don’t have any book cases), which is the perfect spot for picking it up any time I find myself needing inspiration.

Joy, in the unlikely event that you have made your way over to my little slice of the internet, I just want to say thank you once again. It was a treat getting to meet you (just ask my roommates, I’d been talking about the Eat Boutique in excitement for days!). You are just as sweet, heartfelt, and quirky in person as you are on your blog, and I really appreciated that you took the time to chat with every  single person who came out to meet you. I promise to “love and butter-stain” your book, just as you’ve suggested! :] Keep up everything you’re doing, girl! You’re awesome.


4 Comments to “real talk: getting sentimental up in here”

  1. I am so happy you got to meet Joy and is that a glimpse of Ratio in that box? Impressive :) Seriously, Joy’s got a fabulous writing voice and her recipes are stellar. I read her and Shutterbean regularly and check out the podcast whenever I can. Major kudos!

    • Yes, thank you! And good eye- that most certainly is Ratio! :]
      I love Joy’s blog- I think I’m borderline obsessed, and Tracy’s blog is fabulous too! I just started listening to their podcast recently and it’s great- never fails to make me laugh!

  2. hope she reads this.

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