“It seems to me that our three basic needs, for food and security and love, are so mixed and mingled and entwined that we cannot straightly think of one without the others. So it happens that when I write of hunger, I am really writing about love and the hunger for it, and warmth and the love of it and the hunger for it… and then the warmth and richness and fine reality of hunger satisfied… and it is all one.”
It’s day #4 of this elimination bootcamp, and the caffeine migraines have finally gone away. After yet another mug of tea last night (I lost count after 6 mugs, so I can’t tell you how much tea was had), I decided I had to turn to pills to fix the issue. Which, you know, was not ideal, but the throbbing felt like a semi was doing donuts behind my eyeballs. Desperate times and all that.
I also noticed yesterday — after scrubbing my face down for bed — that my skin had broken out spectacularly. Excuse me, what? I thought this was supposed to be some feel-good, look-like-a-goddess elimination cleanse! I’ve been foregoing tomatoes and eggs for shitty skin?
Now that the fridge has been aggressively scrubbed down, I’ve turned my attention to the storage closet-pantry. It’s primarily cluttered with stacks of shoe boxes (unsurprising), but a good deal of canned and dried foods have accumulated there over the years. Thus far, I have taken stock of about 15 cans of beans that need to be eaten sometime in the next three weeks. That’ll be fun.
I also randomly stumbled upon 4 boxes of half-used pancake mixes, which to me is rather suspect because: a) I haven’t used real pancake mix in about 2 years, and b) I certainly do not remember eating all that many pancakes before then. For the moment, I’ve stacked them up on my dining table, and my apartment now looks like the beginning of an in-house IHOP.
Another work in progress.
Last week I spent a few hours clearing out my closet of clothing items I will never wear again. By this, I mean it was high time for me to donate all those dresses and cardigans in size XS that have never seen the light of day in the 6 years I’ve owned them. (I am also 5’8 with man-shoulders, so I’m not quite sure what possessed me to believe I would ever fit into a size XS anything.) It was one of those terrible things that girls do, buying clothes that are too small in the belief that it will motivate them to get their ass on a treadmill.
Incidentally, I hate the gym. And running. So, the cardigans were never worn.
…or: my dream to look classically vogue while wearing a sundress in a Scottish field.
Noosh very sadly moved out of the apartment yesterday morning, so when I got home from work in the evening I opened the door to a half-empty living room and the realization that most of that crap was actually mine and dear God how am I going to get rid of all of it before I leave next month. Feeling the nausea that was rapidly transforming into borderline hysteria at the thought, I turned my attention to the refrigerator.
Aim low. Start small. I can do this.
I then spent the next hour and a half cleaning out my fridge. And when I say cleaning, I mean I took a vacuum cleaner to the floor while the shelves lay in heaps strewn about the living room. Of course, there was much produce to be thrown. Carrots hidden in drawers for so long they had decayed into some sort of orange mass (not pleasant), grenadine stains on door shelves that really should not have been left unattended for two years as they were (even more unpleasant), wasabi paste that I did not even know we owned. It was like bargain hunting in thrift store bins for treasures, if ‘treasures’ meant ‘I cannot believe you let yourself keep this crap for so damn long.’
It was also while I was cleaning that I really thought about food for the first time in a while. And not just what am I going to make for dinner thoughts, but food.
(I’m not quite sure when or why the food blog turned into an online diary, but I’ll run with it.)
“If you must find your own path, and we have left you no easy path, then decide now to choose the hard path that lead to the life and world that you want. And don’t worry if we don’t approve of your choice.”
I feel like I’ve lived a lifetime in just one week. Less than three days ago, I was a few hundred miles south, wandering through the narrow alleys and cobblestone streets of Charleston, visiting giant Southern oaks with a few great friends, guided by the scent of fresh pralines and a dwindling bank account. Now, I’m sitting in bed, my first night as a uni graduate, alarm set for a full day of work at digital services.
It’s almost as though nothing has changed.
(I have run out of clever ways to title cakes. I figure easiest is to list out every ingredient without use of punctuation and hope for the best.)
So, I am officially a uni graduate. Well, maybe not officially. There is still the diploma ceremony to be had; all tradition, all that pomp-and-circumstance silliness. I am supposed to graduate in a garden, once the main, 5000+ person ceremony is (finally) over. I also think it is going to rain next weekend. This will be exciting, in any case.
I may fall to the floor weeping if it rains.
There’s quite little I remember about this weekend besides consuming an outrageous amount of cheese.
Well, no, that’s not all. There was some baking involved. Which is not actually so obvious since these photos are recycled from almost two years ago. But, Friday afternoon was dreary and rainy and the weather did not make for good natural lighting for photography, so I think this is acceptable.
I also really just needed easy access to this recipe and figured the Food Blog was an obvious choice.
The first time I baked a birthday present for O, it was a pan of brownie-bottom pumpkin-swirled cheesecake bars. A pretty delicious dessert, perfectly in-season for the last weeks of autumn when winter was slowly beginning to sink into the cobblestone streets downtown. I very much enjoyed them, as I am wont to do whenever cream cheese is involved, and I figured she might as well.
Lucky for me, she adored them. The following year, I baked her another batch. Why mess with a good thing, after all?
So when she first asked me to bake for her recital a few weeks ago, she casually remarked that I could “maybe bake those pumpkin cheesecake bites you made for my birthday.”
…There was a hint if I’d ever heard one.
Well, these weren’t quite those pumpkin bars, but I think they did the job well enough.
So, these were the first of the three desserts made for O’s recital (the other two being the mini cheesecake tarts and the mini lemon poppyseed bundt cakes). First batch was baked on Thursday. Second and third on Friday. Fourth on Saturday.
Let it be known that I only needed to bake one batch.
Okay, okay. I don’t want to whine.
I did enough of that for about five hours on Friday evening. But I will tell you the story. It’s a good one. Or will, at least, make you feel better about your own life.