Weekend Reading
July 16, 2023

If you tune in regularly, then maybe you’ve noticed that it’s been a challenge for me to keep up with Sunday posts lately.

Nothing’s wrong; I’m just very focused on work and on loved ones. There’s not a lot of time to process or reflect these days, so when I think about writing something on Sunday, I often don’t know what to say.

A while back, I polled readers about what they might like to see covered in a monthly newsletter for subscribers only. Given that I’m struggling with weekly posts, my confidence back then about writing an additional monthly post seems questionable—but that’s another story!

Many of the folks who responded said that they’d like to hear more about what I’m up to and/or thinking about; in other words, they invited me to share without having a topic or a theme.

So in lieu of having a theme today, here are some random snippets about life lately:

I.

It’s been just about a year since I moved apartments.

I spent the July 4th long weekend thinking about the energy and vibrancy that came into my life when I made that change.

On that Tuesday night, the 4th, my mom came over. We were both in low spirits, processing family matters and each a little burnt out for different reasons.

We went out to the roof of my building around 9pm, when fireworks and drone light shows were happening. We couldn’t see a thing, hilariously, but we didn’t need to.

As soon as we stepped outside, we both inhaled sharply. It was so revitalizing to see the city skyline, a little more buzzy than usual at that moment. I had an intense feeling of gratitude for the life I live in the place where I am.

II.

I gave homemade pizza a whirl last weekend, after being impressed by how happily friends of mine make their own oven-baked pies.

Were my pizzas amazing? No.

Were they tasty enough? Yes.

Did I get unnecessarily stressed as I made them? Not at all, and that was the little win of the night.

III.

I’m going away for the next two weeks. It’ll be a combination of traveling on my own and with my oldest friend.

It’s rare that I spend this much time away from my nutrition practice, and it feels strange. But it’ll be good for me, which will in turn be good for my work.

I plan to do some writing and blogging while I’m away, and I know that it’ll feel nice to work the more creative part of my brain.

IV.

For months, I haven’t been able to shake the feeling that I can’t seem to get anything done. So I’ve created a new practice: throughout the day, and especially at the end of the day, I intentionally think about the things that I did do.

Making coffee, tidying the kitchen a little, responding to an email, publishing something on social media, putting together a few recommendations for a client: I take the time to consciously register that I did these things.

Some, like the coffee making, are small and silly, while others are significant. But, since I tend to fixate exclusively on what’s undone, rather than done, this practice of acknowledgment is making me a little less hard on myself.

Right now, I’m focusing on the fact that I did, in fact, mange to write something today.

Happy Sunday, friends. Here are some recipes and reads.

Recipes

Vegan herb and caramelized onion brioche, via King Arthur Baking. Holy yum.

BBQ pineapple tofu skewers for your next summer gathering.

I love a big dish of couscous, especially when lots of roasted summer veggies are involved.

These buffalo chickpea and jackfruit quesadillas would be a fantastic weekend lunch.

The prettiest glazed vegan fruit tart.

Reads

1. A good thread about the connections between eating disorders and PTSD.

2. I’m a big believer that it’s good to do things as a novice. This article touches on why trying a new workout can be healthy, even if it feels like failing at first.

3. Suicide rates are on the rise. Time Magazine reports on bereavement camps, including Comfort Zone Camp in New Jersey.

These camps are for kids and teens who have lost parents to suicide. They offer the young people an immersive experience in which to process, mourn, and connect.

4. Many of you probably saw news this week that the WHO has classified aspartame as being “possibly carcinogenic to humans.”

This kind of headline can be scary to read. NPR‘s analysis offers some clarity and context.

5. This short Q&A with Ari Shapiro has very little to do with food; really, it’s about reading. But I did stop and notice Shapiro’s words about reading cookbooks:

I also read cookbooks for pleasure. They demand nothing of the reader, and every page has the promise of a happy ending.

“Every page has the promise of a happy ending”—what a wonderful, life-affirming way to think about written recipes!

Thanks for sticking with me—really. Have a lovely rest of your Sunday.

xo

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    5 Comments
  1. Hi Gena!

    I just re-read your post from last year about moving. I’m about to celebrate my 37th birthday with a move to a tiny(ish) studio (in Jackson Heights) so I can relate in some ways to what you wrote about. I’ve been getting rid of tons of furniture on FB Marketplace, and I’m grateful for the junkluggers reco because there are at least two things that need to *go*.

    If you have any space-saving tips for outfitting a studio, let me know! I’m a bit daunted.

    I hope you enjoy your time away!

    Best, always,
    Maggie

  2. Hope the upcoming weeks are as kind to you as you are to us Gena.
    So nice to hear you are looking at certain aspects of life in a new light.

    Have a blessed time away xoxo

  3. Would love to read about the connection between eating disorders and ptsd! Is there a link for that?

  4. I look forward to these posts every week. What you have to say is important; no matter the topic or theme, I want to read anything you want to share.

You might also like

Happy Sunday, all, and Happy Mother’s day to those who are celebrating it. I’m bringing my mom vegan cake, among other treats, and taking her to dinner. She was honored for her career in teaching this week, and I’m glad that she’s being appreciated on so many fronts. Few family relationships are uncomplicated, at least in my experience, but I’m blessed to have a pretty special relationship with my mom. Still, a skill I’ve picked up as an only child with a small…

In February, it’s not unusual for yoga classes and studios to place an emphasis on the 4th chakra, or anahata chakra. My studio is no exception, and even if Valentine’s Day weren’t around the corner, the heart chakra would be on my mind. I’m going to try not to quote from Melody Beattie’s Journey to the Heart (which I mentioned last week) every single Sunday, since I don’t want to spoil its surprises for those who haven’t read it. But I was moved enough…

For a few weekends in a row, I’ve written this post in a reflective, calm state, posted it early in the day, and spent the remainder of my Sunday doing what needs doing. Not today: the Sunday Scaries swooped in this morning, and in spite of planning some nice stuff in the afternoon (including seeing a play with my mom) that helped to quell them, I’ve just been too scattered to sit down and write anything. I’m starting a new internship rotation tomorrow….

I’ve wondered about Murphy’s Law, the saying that asserts, “anything that can go wrong will go wrong.” People reference Murphy’s Law when complaining of multiple unfortunate things that happen in a short period of time or in an interrelated way. And it’s true that certain days or events or projects seem a little cursed, right? Or is it that, once one thing has gone wrong, we become more sensitized to what’s not working? Were there always a lot of things going off the…