Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Harping in Heat

(Is anyone else ready for fall?  Don't get me wrong, I enjoy summer, but the heat doesn't seem to be dying down, and I want to cozy up with a good book, blanket and 60 degree weather.)

Lately, I've spent a lot of time consoling myself.  Anniversaries tend to do that.  It's almost like New  Year's, but instead of feeling elated with a fresh start, you're reminded of the same stagnant place you've been in for the last two years.  You imagined that things would be different by now, that you wouldn't be at that same restaurant, living the same routine life (going home doesn't help this at all) and instead of moving forward, you end up crumbling under the pent up pressure that you've put on yourself.  And then you breakdown.  Several times.  Per day.

I've spent all my mental energy expecting my life to go a certain way, that I've completely missed out on what's been happening all along.  Or what could be happening.  I like to think that I have control over things, because then, I'm in charge of my life and no one else is responsible for how it goes, except for me.

The only problem with that, is it will drive you mad.

And after the madness, comes solace.  You find out you're not the only one who feels that way (definitely, not the first) and that the people around you are there to help, if you only ask them.

You remember to breathe.  That it's okay to take a break.  It's okay to not have all the answers.

Your life will go, as it is meant to.  It may sound ethereal and new age, but often times, we see so clearly where our life is headed, that we miss out on the people, places and opportunities that are right here.  Sometimes life will guide you in an unexpected way, and your only job is to allow it to happen and adjust your route.  Chances are, when you let it go, it will happen.

Listen to yourself.  In this town, it's far too easy to compare yourself to others, and feel inadequate because you don't have what others deem successful.  You have to find out what works for you, what success means to you, and not live by anyone else's standards or expectations.  Take a beat.  And make some granola. 

'Give Yourself A Break' Granola
2 c rolled oats
1 very ripe, mashed banana
1/2 c chopped almonds
1/2 c chopped walnuts
1/2 dried cherries
1/2 raisins
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 c agave (or honey)

Pre-heat oven to 350∘Combine the oats, cinnamon, nuts, dried fruit (whatever you have in stock), then add in the banana, followed by the agave.  The banana acts as a binder, and if you're sugar conscious, you could just use that without the agave/honey.  The dash of salt, brings everything together, making all the flavors pop.  Once you've combined the ingredients, spread it onto a metal sheet, and place in the oven for 15 minutes, or until golden-brown.  Let cool, and enjoy how ever you like 


Wednesday, August 22, 2012

1 cup flour, 3/4 birthday

Today is my three-quarters birthday.  Unlike it's close relative, the half-birthday, this day doesn't get nearly as much recognition, when it definitely deserves some attention.  Being the advocate for imaginary holidays that I am, I thought I'd celebrate this fraction of a milestone, with a little impromptu baking.  

From my last trip to the Farmer's Market, I've been saving some fresh rosemary for my Olive Oil Rosemary Cake.  The last time I made this, it was delicious (if you know me, or just want cake, I'd be happy to bake some for you).  Since this is spontaneous baking, I thought I'd get a little savvy and turn it into Olive Oil Rosemary Zucchini Cake.  Baking on the edge.  I was so pleased with myself, that I grabbed my cute, little vintage apron, put my hair in a bun, and then was halted to find that there was no flour left. 


Okay, not quite.  There was one cup.  Recipe called for three. 

I was determined to go through with it anyways (I even googled 1 cup flour recipes.  There are none), I thought, 'I'll just cut the recipe in half, or thirds...okay, so 1 cup flour to 1/4 sugar, to .5865 tsp baking soda, to 13/9 tsp salt..." 

I took a step back, and put down the spatula.  Even if my cake did come out okay, I wouldn't have been satisfied, because I knew it could have been great.  And I wasn't about to settle for 'less-than' cake.  

Frailty, thy name is flour.

Isn't this how life goes?  It seems to be for me lately.  But, I don't see this as a roadblock, rather a delay. 

I won't get to eat my bon-appetit approved pastry this afternoon, but tomorrow instead.

(Once I get all my ingredients).


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Here we go.

WHOO! First post ever. 
Welcome to my humble little blog.

(Why are first posts so hard to write? Seriously, I've written and re-written this thing probably 10 times.)  Regardless how first posts can be a little daunting, you should know that I'm so excited to be doing this. 

I've been wanting to kickstart this for sometime, since I already do a handful of writing, and thought, "What could be more fun, than to share all my quirky thoughts and interests with the general public?".  A few things came to mind.  Going to the beach.  Hanging out with friends.  Socializing in general.  Eventually, blogging seemed like the appropriate answer. 

The inspiration for this came from several sources.  It's also been an interesting time in my life (a.k.a. quarter-life crisis), where everything seems to be up in the air, along with the usual confusion and uncertainty that comes with pursuing a career in acting.  Writing always seems to give me some kind of clarity.  Along with baking.  And food. 

I have an endless curiosity and fascination with the world.  I love finding something new, whether it be a song or musician, restaurant, or quirky/weird health food that nobody likes, I thrive on discovering new things, how they work and sharing them with others (usually because I can't stop thinking about it).  Kind of like having a bee in your bonnet. 

I'll keep it interesting,  and I'll keep it sweet.