Joyful

July 30, 2014 § Leave a comment

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This is an extra from my many attempts to make a birthday present for my friend and roommate this week. I gave her what I hope were the best ones in a pretty frame, but this one turned out rather nice as well. It’s meaningful to her all by itself, but also happens to be the title of a great song by a band she likes.

In crafting this bit of ink and calligraphy for her, I found myself bolstered by it, having to write and rewrite it a few dozen times. The distinctions between joy and happiness have already been expounded upon by others, so I’ll but add that I am learning to look for real joy in my own, daily life. After finding out today that a potential full-time position at my current job is no longer a possibility for me, I reach for the joy that is beyond momentary disappointment. I have had my moment with it and may very well again, but I also trust that doors open when they’re meant to and know that the perks  (4 weeks paid vacation! Maybe still a bit sore on that score.) I would’ve gained in the switch to salaried employee are not my sole pursuit. In truth, nothing really has changed: I still have a job that I mostly enjoy and also was complimented by my boss on the work I do even in midst of the we-went-with-someone-else talk. That means a lot to me. It wasn’t my dream job or even an option that I’d desired before a month ago, so that helps ease the sting some. I didn’t even cry much, and that’s saying something as that’s usually my default with the emotional situations! I give God thanks for the grace he has given me and pray it spills out to those I work with even now.

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Dreams Can Come True

October 8, 2013 § Leave a comment

I have to share this.

“This” happened last week, on Friday to be exact. A chance encounter in our office elevator on Wednesday and the mention of a need for a hand model for some technique shots for a cookbook came first. A flash of memory of a Dawn dish detergent commercial involving the tag line “tough on grease, but soft on hands” as a pair of lovely hands shared the screen with a bottle of blue Dawn. From that moment on, I took to mimicking said commercial with my own hands and a dream was born. With trepidation, I submitted my paws for inspection and passed the test. For the better part of the day, I “cooked” ham (3 times) and “fried” chicken and “cut” and seared skillet potatoes for the camera. My 7-year-old self was giddy, and it certainly provided a welcome break from the usual. The experience added a bright spot of excitement in the usually mundane work week. Here’s the proof:

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Chocolate Custard

March 15, 2013 § Leave a comment

Lately, I’ve been craving a treat with a thick, spoonable texture and the flavor of dark chocolate that melts beguilingly on the tongue. It’s stoked by all the pudding recipes I come across on my internet ramblings. It’s hard to choose from among the offerings of glissade chocolate pudding or mousseline or  pot de crème. The short ingredient list of a recipe on Food and Wine’s website won me over. chocolatecustard

This custard (un)fortunately made just enough for two small dishes worth of deep, rich, smooth chocolate to savor. I followed the directions mostly to the letter, except my egg was extra-large and I spilled most of my steamed milk onto the counter and had to regroup. It’s a good starting point for experimenting, I think, and I want to try infusing the milk with spices. The recipe’s not kidding about only chilling the mixture for 5 minutes, after spending several hours in the refrigerator, it loses its creamy appeal and takes on a more truffle-esque denser consistency. Of course, I don’t mind.

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