The Pressure of Perfection and the Messy Reality of Life

So as my loyal readers know (hi mom! Hi Ally!), I have not been writing because we have been MOVING. There is so much contained in the little word, moving. All the sorting, packing, cleaning, moving, unpacking, avoiding unpacking, stressing about unpacking, and all that sort of thing. I keep telling myself, I’ll write when I get a moment, but that moment never comes. There is always another box, and really its more that there is always another MEAL TO COOK FROM SCRATCH.

Oh yes, I’m still doing it. Even through the packing, clean, moving, unpacking madness I have been making (almost) every single meal from scratch. Every day. Three times a day. Do you know how hard it is to cook when almost your entire kitchen is in boxes and you need to scrub out your refrigerator and you are staying at the in-laws (who don’t have a gluten free kitchen, although they really tried and were so sweet) and need to do most of your cooking on the weekend when you go back to your apartment in another city and oh you should be packing too? Freakin hard.

I mostly made simple things that didn’t take too much time, but quite frankly I get bored easily. Baked tofu is delish and easy, but eating it every day for a week gets old. I ate a lot of the al fresco style meal I posted about – cheese, fruit, baked tofu or tempeh, fresh tomatoes, etc. Somehow a not-cooked meal never really satisfies me though.  I also made a lot of eggplant miso and roasted vegetables.

It was a huge relief to get to the new BIGGER kitchen, and dig out my gear I’d had to go without for weeks. When I saw my soy-milk maker (which is how I make tofu and better yet, tofu curds) I just about danced! I ate fresh soft tofu curds every meal for two days. (and then got tired of it, of course)

I’ve been wanting a dishwasher for ages, and after my sweet wonderful partner took on doing a lot more of the washing up so I could cook more and realized she spends about 1.5 hours a DAY washing dishes, we got a dish washer! It is a rolly one, since we are in a rental. It has been like manna from heaven. Five minutes to load, turn it on, and walk away! That’s nearly an hour and twenty five minute more we have each day to spend together.

Last weekend, Ally and I went to the farmer’s market here in Olympia. We bought a huge bag of onions, and nearly as many potatoes. Chatting with the person who grew all the food, we bought leeks, carrots, garlic, and kale. I LOVE knowing where my food comes from. I LOVE that my food is local. I LOVE that it was planted, cared for and harvested by hands with such wisdom about and passion for food.

Ally and her parents watched Forks Over Knives a couple weeks ago and it made us even more determined to move toward a local plant based diet. It is amazing how humans cling to ideas even when there is very clear scientific evidence that it is completely false. The overwhelming science, aka not-an-opinion-we-actually-tested-it-and-this-is-what-happened, is that eating more than just a little meat and dairy, or fried and processed foods, WILL KILL YOU. It’s not just that it will give you an upset tummy or high blood pressure (although it will do that too), it will actually KILL you. I mean, do whatever you want, but don’t pretend it’s good for you. Don’t LIE to yourself and others. If you’re like “yeah, it’ll kill me, but I’m eating it”, then whatever that is your choice. Its funny, I remember when there were those congressional hearings in 1992? about whether or not smoking was bad for you. Now people would laugh in your face if you tried to claim smoking wasn’t bad for you, but that’s what they were trying to do. And that is what people are trying to do now with food. But the change is in the wind! I can feel it! More and more people are realizing that gluten is pretty bad for a lot of people, that eating fruits and vegetables are delicious but more than that what you eat determines how you feel.

Okay, that was a massive digression. That is the other reason I haven’t been writing! My brain is all over the place. I’m not really getting enough sleep!

What was I saying?

Oh yeah. So that was my point I was eventually trying to get to, that I was feeling a lot of internal pressure to post coherent posts with pretty pictures and recipes. And I finally realized…that’s not gonna happen! Life is messy and lived on the fly. It is fully of starts and stalls and random beautiful moments, and a lot of laundry and dishes and groans at the alarm going off when it is still dark out. It is about making healthy nourishing food that my family loves, and it is about grabbing dinner of grapes and cheese. Life is having a drawer full of Lara bars at work, and making the most amazing (grain free) fish of my life today at lunch for my mom who drove and hour and a half EACH WAY to come have lunch with Ally and I for an hour.

Life is messy and imperfect and really it’s a heck of a lot more fun that way! When I can let of the “shoulds” and expectations and just enjoy what is in front of me, each moment becomes more like a grand adventure. I forget about what I can’t have, and I enjoy what I have ten times more than what I thought I wanted.

Recipes will probably come at some point. But for now, I am striving to deeply enjoy my food, to use it for health and to deliberately create time with my loved ones.

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2 thoughts on “The Pressure of Perfection and the Messy Reality of Life

  1. Do you know if you can use the soy milk maker to make other kinds of milk? I can’t have soy, but most of the commercial non-dairy milks have sugar, lecithin, or other ingredients that give me trouble, as well as suspicious ingredients. I’m ready to go all-natural on the non-dairy milk.

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