Sunday, May 22, 2022

Work/life balance

I know that I have infinite company in feeling that the roller coaster of the last two years has thrown this balance off completely, that the mental load that work entails has expanded to encroach into every corner of brain space, with attending consequences for mental and physical health. Re-establishing boundaries, especially for myself, is an ongoing challenge and a necessary one. Here are some things that have helped recently with re-balancing the scales:

Getting out of the house and going somewhere different - in this case, London. After being entirely confined to the BosNYWash megalopolis for nearly 3 years, I got on a plane with my family and went to a different country altogether. We took Miss B to some of our favorite London spots and thoroughly enjoyed the change of scene. Oh, and we got to cheer DP on as he won an award in his field, which put a very nice finishing touch to the excursion.

Welcoming visitors - two of my sisters came to visit, also for the first time in nearly 3 years. It was such a refreshing change; we took a break from the regular routine to do touristy things with them, as well as making the most of the time together with lots of walking, chatting, and eating. We spotted this rainbow as we were lingering at the dinner table one evening - I doubt I'd have noticed if it if I'd been doing my usual daily round. 

Making time for hobbies - these breaks from the routine reminded me that I don't have to wait for other people or events to provide an opportunity to take some time to focus on things other than work. In addition to my usual food purchases at the farmers' market this weekend (including some spectacular strawberries, see above), I also picked up some tomato and herb plants to grow on the back deck - an addition to the daily routine that I hope will supplement both diet and quality of life. 

Sunday, April 17, 2022

Easter 2022

Here's this year's edition of my annual Easter post...

...freshly completed tarrale...

...a piping-hot pizza chiena...

...a bouquet of tulips from my visit to the first farmers' market of the year on Saturday morning...

...all culminating in this morning's Easter breakfast spread.

I also discovered from a friend's post that this weekend is a rare confluence of spring festivals in a number of different cultures and traditions. So I'm sending good wishes to everyone celebrating Easter, Passover, Ramadan, and Vaisakhi this weekend - and a weekend of peace, goodwill, and abundance to everyone. 

Sunday, April 3, 2022

March roundup

March got away from me, so here are a few recent highlights:

I’m continuing to find new uses for my sourdough starter and this one is right up there: a recipe for nearly-instant crumpets, aka TrashCrumps, constructed mainly from starter and found on Instagram. Definitely a keeper.

We had a weekend in New York City mid-month where we visited friends and family, ate lots of good food, and walked a good chunk of Manhattan (21,000 steps in one day!). Our Saturday evening included taking Miss B most of the length of Central Park, including the reservoir.

I’ve been continuing to make snacking cakes, inspired by this book. Miss B’s recent favorite is a raspberry cake topped with a glaze made with icing sugar mixed with equal parts milk and blood orange juice. A good way to make the most of their short season.

Spring has come to northern Virginia and the flowers are blooming. I snapped this gorgeous camellia when it was all just beginning a couple of weeks ago.

And now it's time to jump into April. Hoping it brings good things to all.

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