My husband and I have been on a diet. I suppose we finally noticed ourselves in the double-mirrored closet doors we pass frequently in daily comings and goings, stopping long enough on one recent occasion to wonder, “Who are they, and what happened to us?” Or perhaps it was that as well as the stereotypical question one considers when the last child leaves the house and the next 50 years of one’s life stretch ahead: Now what will we do? Goodness knows the possibilities are nearly limitless, but considering engaging in new adventures sporting matching muffin tops isn’t an attractive option. Hence, the diet.
Eat less, exercise more. Watch portions, no seconds. Eat whole grains, dark greens, and brightly colored vegetables and fruit. Cut back on the Coke (him) and the wine (me). Not exactly rocket science, I know, but I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t feel like cooking. It’s easier to slice cucumbers and dip them into a two tablespoon ration of roasted garlic hummus I purchase instead of making it myself. I know. Make my own hummus. I have before. Does that count?
I have been fairly diligent about baking whole grain bread the two of us chew on throughout the week, on mornings toasted and smeared with a bit of apple butter, or at lunch with an ounce of cheese. No cooking involved outside of the initial bake, and it has been fun experimenting.
With the toothsome texture of this loaf made primarily of spelt, at least I’ll know we’ll have thin cheeks.
On the days I most want to sleep in, I find myself staring into the dark wondering what time it is. Falling back into a sound sleep rarely happens as mental list-making begins. This isn’t something I choose to do, but once it begins, I give in and quietly head downstairs to wait for sunrise.
The most pleasant aspect of being awake at 3 a.m. is the quiet; the refrigerator’s soft whirring and a clock ticking somewhere in the house magnify the silence. If I’m lucky, I will have remembered to bring my book downstairs, finally able to read more than the pathetic page or so I manage to get in each night before nodding off. Otherwise, I’m left to leaf through food magazines or cookbooks, looking for an excuse to organize a dinner to try a few new recipes.
Within a few hours, the room takes on a rosy glow as the rising sun creates a burst of purple, then magenta against the clouds over the mountains in the east. When it finally crests the skyline, brilliant light shoots through the kitchen window, creating a show of patterns against the wall that has me reaching for my camera.
The squeak of floorboards upstairs lets me know that someone else is awake and so I can begin my favorite breakfast. The aroma won’t quite attract attention that bacon does, but it will be a welcomed treat just the same.
A friend of mine gave me a bag of small, crisp red apples the last time she came for dinner and somehow, I’d lost track of them. I should have known they’d been sitting in the fridge, waiting for me to get around to making something with Fall written all over it. Would it be apple nut muffins, a new take on a Waldorf salad, or perhaps an apple butternut squash soup? I couldn’t decide until last weekend when I knew I’d be in the kitchen making macarons and decided to treat the menfolk to breakfast. I’m not the one who normally makes breakfast on Sunday, so my offer was met with surprise and instant nods of, “Yes, please!” Neither my husband or son would turn down pancakes even if they had a healthier twist than those my husband usually makes. Besides, I knew I’d get to experiment a bit and it’s always fun to find out just how a particular recipe will end up.
If you have a jar of dulce de leche sitting around, it’s amazing what a little bit of it can do to a nice stack of hot ones on a cool Fall morning. Initially, it was to have ended up filling the macarons, but it didn’t make it past the pancakes.
I think one of the nicest aspects of the food blog world is meeting people and having someone take the time to say, “I like your blog.” It’s not expected even though ultimately, that’s what most of us are working for, isn’t it? Maybe it’s not what we began blogging for, but it seems that in the long run, it’s a lot of work if no one’s enjoying what we produce.
Keeping a non-digital scrap book would be far less time consuming, but oh, so quiet. At this point, I could never give up the spirited noise that greets me each day that I sit down to work — whether it’s from twitter, or reading blogs, or responding to comments made on mine, the positive energy that greets me is invaluable!
Recently, I was tagged by Karen of Mignardise to share six random things about myself, and I’m grinning, because I like to have fun with these things. But I’m thinking you may need the bribe of a nice bowl of some warm Maple Apple Crisp and a cup of coffee to go with my random nuggets of information. I have a tendency to blather on a bit.