Emily McKinley

After spending 15 years satiating a deep and hungry wanderlust - moving 21 times in 5 states and 3 countries - Emily has been settling in and putting down roots in St. Paul, and staying very close to home in recent years. What is enough for her usually manifests as thoughtful purchasing, choosing long-term joy over short-term satisfaction, and what is realistically manageable. For example, she lives in a small house and relishes in the fact that it takes 15 minutes to clean it on an average day.

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My Rich Friends

Feb 07

My Rich Friends

It is my general impression that most people tend to have friends who are demographically similar to them. My impression is also that exceptions to this usually span into categories of race and sexual orientation: white people who have a black friend, straight couples who have gay couple friends. I’m thinking right now of a Modern Family episode where Cameron...

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Good Ol’ January, Or, How I Am Kicking Sugar

Jan 11

Good Ol’ January, Or, How I Am Kicking Sugar

The above image is the most recent cake I baked and decorated. My role in the family is the dessert baker, because I’m pretty good at it, but mostly because I care about eating delicious things made from real butter and organic ingredients and fresh fruit and, well, lots of sugar. This was my sister-in-law’s 40th birthday cake for her “everlasting...

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Hello, Winter.

Nov 15

Hello, Winter.

In this present moment, the second snowfall of the season is upon us. The first one occurred a few days ago. I wasn’t amused. I secluded a bit more than normal and when asked by a 10 year old in a high-pitched, exuberant voice if I was excited about the snow, I couldn’t even muster up a lie; I just said, “No. I’m not ready for it yet.”...

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Thanks (again), Mother Theresa.

Oct 18

Thanks (again), Mother Theresa.

“Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier.” -Mother Teresa I saw this quote on a day when my heart had burst as a social worker, a day when people’s needs seemed so vast and deep I couldn’t fathom how to be meaningfully helpful. As a social worker, that’s what I’m supposed to do – be helpful. But how to...

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Just Right

Sep 15

Just Right

During my first few days in training as a Peace Corps volunteer in El Salvador, a fellow volunteer told me a story of his Salvadoran host mother filling his plate full of too much food at every meal. He’d eat a little, and she’d come around with a spoonful of more food to put on his plate, ensuring that a blank spot of plate didn’t show for more...

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