Thursday, January 29, 2015

The Inspired - Button Pushers

Button Globe
"Button Pushers"

Everybody knows a button pusher.

You say you hate Cilantro? Well the button pusher you know, will make a seven layer dip with at least two layers of cilantro just for you.

You say you can’t get pregnant? The button pusher will show you pictures of all their pregnant friends.

You say you’re watching your weight? The button pusher will ask you to lunch and order nachos with a side of fries.

You’ve lost your wallet, you say? The button pusher is the one who stole it but will gladly help you look for it.

You’re insecure about your laugh? You wish your bottom was firmer? You wish you had less arm jiggle? The button pusher will make sure everyone else knows those tiny nuances about you.

The button pusher is not your friend. Is the button pusher your enemy?

People are not creatures of logic. People are creatures of emotion, of ego, of vanity and of pride. We all know our own darkness. Why do people prey on these shadowed corners? Do we love others pain and suffering so much that we eat others darkness like ice cream? Misanthropy is a profession.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Change Your Life

It seems I may be experiencing a Mid-Life Crisis. I capitalize it as it can be a title that someone carries, I believe. Some of us have them and some of us don't. As a woman, I believe my crisis looks quite a bit different than the film version that men are stereo-typically thought to have. I am not going to run out and get a Porsche. I am not going to get a boyfriend. I am not going to quit my job (yet, anyway). But I do want to focus on being better. And stop thinking about things that do not serve me.

For instance, I have been singled out at work by two folks whose team I am no part of. I stay awake at night thinking about them and the fact that they want to make me miserable. They don't like me because I am cheerful and happy, positive and friendly, motivated and professional. It doesn't behoove me to think of their disdain for me. Instead, I should be thinking of my wants, my desires, my comfort and my health and how I want to improve my standing. I should be considering what my parents think of me and whether my husband is proud of me rather than even referring to sneers from unprofessional, unhappy people in my mundane, very un-creative job.

On January 5, 2015, my friend Clark introduced me to a book called, "Your Best Year Yet" by Karen Ann Kennedy. I bought it and while I haven't been super structured with it (because inflexibility doesn't serve me), I have gotten a journal and I do read the book as I would any daily devotional, because that is what it is.

What I am trying to be structured in is eating to be healthy and serving food to my husband that encourages him to be healthy as well. I want to re-commit to my yoga practice and (thankfully) have found a new studio to call home and try to meditate and pray for health, self-control, forgiveness and letting go of resentment. And, I want to not only be positive, because that is my nature, but in fact, take that giant leap even further and instead of floating on pink clouds and simply being a dreamer, become the do-er I know I am. The blogs I read (the short list), Regina's here and Lori's here, remind me that I am worthy to have all my desires met; all my goals achieved.

And so I looked for more reference materials on how I really can make this year the best yet and continue in subsequent years to do the same for myself and my family. The list I found is from Time Magazine's online Psychology Section. The article is called "The Ten Best Self-Help Books You've (Probably) Never Heard Of." One of the books listed was published in 1869. I think the list is worth some research. To accompany Karen's book, I also ordered "It Works" by RHJ. It's $2.99 and worth every cent.

Self Mastery Through Conscious Autosuggestion by Emile Coue - 1869.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

It's a New Year - 2015

May your year and all the following years be blessed for you, yours, me and mine too!


Thursday, January 1, 2015

Sweet Winter Pie - A Pear Cranberry Treat





If you like pears and you like cranberries, you will really, really like this wintertime dessert.

Those succulent pears, the tart cranberries, the hint of Cardamom and the Streusel topping was like Christmas in my mouth!

It is a sweet I served after Christmas dinner but it is so easy you can serve it any old time you want. It's especially good with a dollop of whipped cream but my dad loved it with some vanilla ice cream. It's excellent warm or at room temp and keeps very well in the fridge.
I say, make a rich beef stew and follow it up with tea and this Sweet Winter Pie!

Sweet Winter Pie
(Pear and Cranberry Pie with Streusel Topping)

Pre-heat oven to 350 F.

Streusel Ingredients:
1 cup flour
1/2 cup rolled oats (I use quick cook)
1/2 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark - doesn't matter)
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter melted

Assembly:
In a medium bowl, mix all ingredients together until crumbly, set aside.

Pie Ingredients:

At grocery stores in the colder months there are typically bagged Anjou or Bartlett or Bosc Pears. Any of these varieties will work for this pie. I love the Bartletts and they were $2.69 at Trader Joe's, so there you have it. (If you cannot find the bagged pears, use about 7-8 medium sized ripe pears; not mushy but ripe).

Peel, core and chop all pears.
Rind and juice of 1 orange
1/4 cup flour
2/3 cup sugar
3/4 - 1 cup dried cranberries chopped
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cardamom
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
Pinch salt
And...Trader Joe's Pie Crust 

Directions:

Unroll 1 pie crust and lay it in the pie dish.
After mixing pears and the next 8 ingredients gently, add them to the pie crust.
With your fingers evenly crumble on the Streusel as if you were making a drip castle in the sand.
Place the assembled Winter Pie on a baking sheet.
Bake at 350 for one hour.