Archive for the ‘living’ Category
This weekend, Daniel and I made a day trip to Ocean Springs with three items on our agenda: 1) a remarkable pitcher plant bog in the Desoto National Forest, 2) good food, and 3) pelican watching. I’m happy to report it was a success – and just the getaway we needed.
Locals call this extensive pitcher plant bog “Buttercup Flats,” and I can see why.
The vegetarian samosas at Mosaic Tapas were delicious, and it was perfect weather for an al fresco lunch.
The pelicans who live around this pier (near the Shearwater Bridge) have a delightful habit of roosting and preening on these posts. And their preening moves had us laughing out loud.
(The photo of the pitcher plants and the close-up photos of the pelicans were taken by Daniel.)
I knew I was stressed last semester when simply getting dressed – putting together outfits and trying to remember what I’d worn the week (or day) before – was hive-inducing. It’s not that my options were limited. And my closet was certainly organized (thanks to a previous year’s organizing blitz). I just couldn’t see how the pieces were working together, and the result was unwelcome added stress.
Enter Stylebook, an iPhone app I’d read about and been too lazy to try. (Taking pictures of every piece of clothing I owned seemed exhausting.) But when a nasty cold had me stuck at home for several days after the holidays, I decided to take it on. And as I began the painstaking process of photographing my clothing, I realized that I’d been hoarding clothes like crazy. I still had clothes from college and my first year of working – when I had no definable style whatsoever and tended to err on the frumpy side too keep from looking too young (!). So I made a decision: if I couldn’t motivate myself to photograph and catalog the item, it went in the donation pile.
It was a little scary for this hoarder to get rid of so much at once, but when I started using the app’s “Look” function to put together outfits, I realized I still have plenty of options. Suddenly, my closet could breathe. (And that’s no small feat in such a tiny space.) As I took out each piece of clothing, I checked for holes, tears, stains, and pills, and I invested in a multipurpose sweater comb and fabric spray to keep my clothes looking (and smelling) like new.
I’m also determined to eliminate (or at least reduce the frequency of) the work-week wardrobe crises. I’ve found the calendar function in the app to be a useful planning tool; plus, I can see what I’ve worn recently. There’s also a handy packing list function that will, I hope, preempt my packing panics. Was this editing and organizing process tedious? Yes. Was it worth it? For me, absolutely. Here’s to a year of dressing and living well.
Daniel’s carefully constructed and lovingly tended truck garden is full of goodness – we’ve got mint, basil, Thai basil, mustard greens, lettuce, cilantro, onion, garlic chives, rosemary, and thyme, as well as some zinnias. Since the lettuce and greens were first to come up and have been multiplying almost faster than we can eat them or give them away, we’ve been having truck garden lettuce alone as a simple salad and on/with everything else we make. Daniel has agreed to write a post on the truck garden soon, but for now, here’s what we’ve been eating:
Black Bean Burgers with Truck Garden Lettuce and Avocado
I love that our local Baker’s Burgers has a vegetarian black bean burger (see my review here), but it’s made with eggs. And while that doesn’t stop us from the occasional visit, I’d just as soon have an egg-free (and lower fat) version. Lately, I’ve been making my own black bean burgers (loosely based on this recipe) and garnishing them with avocado and, of course, truck garden lettuce.
Black Bean Tacos with Homemade Salsa, Avocado, and Truck Garden Lettuce
We apparently can’t get enough of the black bean + avocado + lettuce combo around here, but who doesn’t love tacos, after all? I like to season the black beans with cumin, oregano, Frank’s hot sauce, black pepper, and a dash of salt, then smother them with Daniel’s homemade salsa (different every time, but here’s our basic recipe) and garnish with fresh avocado and truck garden lettuce.