I confess that I’m not a shopaholic. But I love unique finds. Things that speak to you. For me, it often involves bees. And boy do they show up everywhere. I pin these – either instead of buying them, or to remind me to buy them. Either way, it’s my curated collection of honeybee love. Pinterest is always a great source for gift ideas.
I think my favorite are the bee earbuds. Sadly they show as out of stock every time I’ve clicked. Bummer. I think it would be great fun to stick the little buzzers in my ears to listen to a podcast or some music while prepping dinner. And speaking of podcasts, these have become my new go-to when driving deliveries, kids, or errands. Sometimes I need something more than music but less than politics. Go podcast. It’s like an audio magazine for any niche you can dream up. Cooking, shopping, fashion, sports, business, metal detecting, art, hunting, human interest and yes, there are even beekeeping podcasts. I’ll spare you the nerdy details.
One of my favorites has to be Mike Rowe’s The Way I Heard It. He tags it as “The podcast for the curious mind with the short attention span.” Count me in. He tells tales of human interest, generally well-known figures you will recognize, but from an obscure angle. The blissfully brief show weaves a tales of humble beginnings, quirky side hustles, or scandalous news that you’ve probably never heard. My two favorites are “The Merry Christmas” edition with the ominous red phone that never rings, and “A Potty Mouth with a Secret” about more than concealed recipes. The stories are well told, interesting, and quick enough to fit between errand stops. Great fodder for future cookouts and cocktail parties.
You Bet Your Garden with Ed McGrath (of former Organic Gardening fame) is another favorite. This call-in style show is wildly entertaining for the garden-inclined. McGrath has both the knowledge and witty sense of humor to answer backyard gardening questions from around the country. There is always a question of the week which he delves into more detail. Topics range from tree mulching, fig protection, and irrigation ideas. Long form style but broken up with lots of question segments that make it easy to pause and pick up again later.
Theresa Loe hosts Living Homegrown, a podcast about “living farm fresh without the farm”. Since we have the farm, I thought I’d have graduated from this one. But Theresa covers a variety of topics on critter keeping, cooking, gardening, and preserving. I loved her recent show on making true pickles (fermented pickles – not those bootleg quick pickles I’ve been making all these years). Just when I think I could host the show, she brings on a new topic in bread baking or making hard cider at home. and I love her forgiving approach that any small step is progress. Great for the DIY’er with limited or abundant space.
Special Sauce by Serious Eats creator Ed Levine is a solid choice for any foodie. Although I’m not in the know enough to catch all of the chef name dropping that goes on, I still enjoy the topics. His recent interview with Rodney Scott about his childhood work ethic and roots in pit barbecue was real and refreshing. I listened to this one as we were extracting sourwood honey last week. (Extracting can be a repetitive and arduous task – but rewards the laborer with drippy honeycomb to chew on while working/listening.) Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ is now on my bucket list.
Hunt, Gather, Talk is a niche podcast for the outdoorsmen in your life. Author Hank Shaw talks edible foraging, fishing, wild food prep, and outdoor skills. all neatly sown together and presented on a rustic audio table. A must for the hunter or chef of the hunter.
My newest indulgence is Potluck. A duo of Will & Chris discussing all sorts of southern culture. Most recently was a dive into the regional sodas made in the south. The NC ones I knew (Cheerwine floats from Cookout are well loved round here). But there were all sorts of others that I’d never heard of – like Cannonborough Blueberry Vanilla and Buffalo Rock Ginger Ale. Plus some great reminders of Barq’s, Nehi, and Sundrop. Glass bottles rule. Long-form conversational podcast on a variety of interesting stuff – especially if you are into bourbon.
If podcasts are new to you, click the purple podcast icon on your iPhone to get started. Then check out the iTunes Store or Stitcher for podcasts. Search and ye shall find. If you are already a podcast addict, share your favorites in the comments below. I’d love to add to my library que!