ginger cookies with honey cream filling

I know it’s a great time of year when my two favorite pastimes – spending an afternoon strolling around the city with a constant supply of overpriced artisan coffee, and staying in bed, under the covers, for the entirety of the day – are totally socially acceptable. Especially the latter.

Take today, for example: I woke up at noon, threw off old pjs, took a hot shower (which consisted of equal parts Broadway singing and equal parts leaning against the tile wall and falling asleep), changed into a fresh pair of pjs, and sat on the couch watching chick flicks and bemoaning the difficulties of adulthood with Roods.

Now, I’m sprawled on the bed (and let me tell you, it took considerable effort to move from the living room to my bedroom), typing this up, and feeling so lazy that I’m not even sure I’ll muster up the strength to cook dinner. I may, in fact, just meld into the mattress and die here.

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You might notice that my laziness has also extended to my food photography, though this is mostly because there is no natural light in my English basement, and I’m not sure I’m really about placing dessert on the stoop outside as passersby watch me hunch over in a pair of gloves and scarf to snap some shots of friggin’ cookies.

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cinnamon raisin pumpkin bread with honeyed walnut cream cheese (GF)

As if I thought the year could not get any weirder, the month of March has proven me wrong.

I’m currently sitting on my couch with a glass of kombucha I’ve been working my way through for the past 3 hours, glancing out the window every few minutes at the steady fall of snow gently coating car roofs and asphalt. I have about twenty minutes before I leave to go teach, twenty minutes in which I hope to finish this tea and find a clean sweatshirt dug out of the bottom of my closet.

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pumpkin bars with maple cream cheese frosting

It’s a nice time of year. And not even because of the wool coats and bright scarves, coffee mugs and Louis Armstrong blaring merrily in every cafe, and time off from classes for a few days’ respite with family fast-approaching.

Those are all nice too, of course. Sensory manifestations of why I adore autumn and the holiday season. But even more than all that, it’s a nice time of year.

I was at Barnes and Noble yesterday, working on a paper after my excursion downtown, a cup of pomegranate tea in hand as uni-student-occupied-tables covered in Macs and textbooks littered the Starbucks cafe (a common sight).

And behind me I heard a mum and child walk by – a son around 5 years old, 6 at most – talking about Christmas presents for dad and going to the grocery store to buy ingredients for gingerbread cookies and “how about this nice new book for your sister?”

I hadn’t even realized that I had stopped typing, trying my damnedest not to look too overt in my eavesdropping. I caught the eye of the woman sitting next to me – alone, save for the latest copy of the Times and a plate of biscotti – and she gave me a knowing smile. I returned it, heart unexpectedly lightened.

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lemon, blackberry, ginger cake

“…yeah, dad, the car’s been making this awful, sputtering noise for the last few hundred yards. But we made it up to the orchard and into a parking spot, at least. I’m about to call the guy and I guess we’ll have the car towed back to grounds. What a birthday.”

And so then we waited. Hot apple cider in hand, a bag or two of peanut brittle tucked away, and a container of apple cider donuts sitting on the hood of Matt’s poor old car. The poor old car who endured her – debatably – untimely demise on a breezy, October afternoon.

Then again, in retrospect, perhaps it wasn’t the greatest idea we’ve ever had to drive a near-18 year old stick-shift up a mountain.

It was somewhat of a stressful time, to be sure. Particularly for dear old Matt, who I’m quite certain did not plan to spend his 22nd birthday afternoon on the phone with AAA.

But we all persevered. Dignity a bit bruised perhaps, but happy enough full of donuts and each other’s company, and the assurance of a story that wouldn’t look quite as devastating after a few drinks.

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espresso whoopie pies and a portuguese tale

So, here I am, sitting in one of my favorite coffee shops downtown, having hauled myself out of bed and into the city with every intention of getting some much-needed reading done. Instead, I have decided that, with a mug of steaming hot apple cider by my side and an inexpressible excitement about a looming encounter with the Dalai Lama in 3 hours, I’ll write. I did bake, which is shocking feat in and of itself, but that’s not what this post is about.

Mostly, and most importantly, it’s a story. A true story, at that, and kind of an incredible one. Because sometimes the world works in very wondrous ways.

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apple pie cheesecake bars

So, some of you may notice…this isn’t really a new post. By that I mean, I didn’t make these. I mean, I did make them, just not today. Or this month. Or this calendar year.

Yeah, I decided that my egregiously lengthy hiatuses between updates needed to be broken up somehow, but I’ve not had the time to actually sit down and bake something. So, a great big apology, dear readers, but at least you can have some pretty photos in the mean time. Why am I reposting these, specifically? Well, easy:

  1. It’s almost autumn, and
  2. They are literally one of the most delicious things on the planet, and you are not really living until you’ve had one.

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