I’ve discussed before how it is in my nature to self-reflect. I’ve realized that I’ve been writing this blog for six months now and it is time to evaluate. I was initially hesitant to start such an endeavor and I laid out my concerns from the get-go.
Here’s what I’ve learned so far:
1. I enjoy it. Immensely.
I really wasn’t expecting this. I find myself thinking about what I want to blog about next. Usually it’s food related (see below) and that is definitely what I am most comfortable talking about. Well that and the miserable winter weather here in the Midwest. I find myself a little hesitant to talk about more serious matters, like a post I’ve been thinking about for ages now, Motherhood and Mad (wo)Men. And yes, when I say serious I mean a television show. But seriously, this television show has single handedly changed the trends of popular culture: I am talking, of course, of fashion and cocktails. But it also brings to the table topics about gender roles, homosexuality and what motivates different generations in how they act and respond to events. And it is absolutely gorgeous to watch. But I am not quite ready to share my thoughts so publicly. Mostly because I am not sure how interesting those thoughts are. One of my current goals is to develop and publicize my thoughts on current events and popular culture.
I do like trying to find my voice in this blog. I like how pretty it looks (things like aesthetics mean a lot to me). I’ve become obsessed with the online style of Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, and find myself imitating it (especially when it comes to food). Molly Wizenberg, blogger of Orangette and sometimes writer for Bon Appetit, and her complete sincerity has been another huge influence for me.
2. I like talking about food and drink above anything else.
I don’t understand the people who think of food as merely sustenance. Clearly they are not eating the right food. As a graduate student, there was hardly time or the budget for a highly active social life – but we always needed to eat and so food became a large part of my life. Now, while I make (slightly) more money as a post-doc, most of it goes towards my travel budget. So I spend more time in my kitchen. And I love that. The process of taking something and transforming it into something that not only satisfies your hunger but also your heart gives me such joy. And finding joy and sharing that is one of my main purposes for having this blog.
Now, speaking of kitchens… Mine is unbelievable small and quite lacking in counter space.
Of course this was by far the best kitchen I saw when I was looking for places to live in Minneapolis. But really, this is ALL the counter space that I have.
I am amazed that I am able to do any cooking in here. But I make do.
3. I am trying to develop some photography skills.
I bought a pretty nice camera (a Nikon Coolpix P90) a year and a half ago with the hopes that I would try and take 1) more photos and 2) better photos. I can’t say that prior to writing this blog I achieved either of those things. Now I am definitely taking more photos and every once in a while hit upon one that I really like. I am told that’s how getting better is done – practice and be prepared to take a hundred (or more) bad photos for every good one. One of the best Christmas gifts that I got this year was two extra rechargeable batteries for my camera. I’ve also discovered how important natural light is.
Have I mentioned that my kitchen is completely devoid of natural light? My dining room steals all of the light, leaving me with a complicated system of artificial lighting in my kitchen.
But it’s true that I find the photos that I take in the dining room are some of my better ones. Of course I still have to deal with the fact that most of my cooking takes place in the evening, after the sun has gone down. Luckily the days are getting longer now. Another goal is to continue to work on taking better photos.
4. I am secretly thrilled that people read this blog.
Okay, so maybe not so secretly. I love all the comments I get, both on- and off-line. Please, continue to blog-stalk me! I’ve recently decided to start announcing new posts on Twitter and Facebook. I might still change my mind, publicizing my posts like this – but I find that I like that people look at this. I’ve considered making cutesy names for the people in my life and not sharing my frustrations with my current career like lots of other bloggers do. But that doesn’t really sit well with me. I am exceedingly honest in what I say and that’s not dependent on who’s listening. I’ve been told that “people know where they stand with me” and I think that principle holds true with this blog as well.
To my friends and family who read this – I hope that it continues to feel like you know what is going on in my life – it’s why I started this blog.
To those I don’t personally know – you have no idea how much it pleases me to know you exist. I don’t even know how to articulate the joy I get when somebody who has stumbled onto this blog posts a comment.
5. I am trying really hard not to be the crazy cat lady who has a blog named after her cute cats and bombards the posts with photos of them.
Especially photos from when they were kittens …
Or when they do cute things …
Or just exist …
I might still need to work on that.