Now that I’ve been unlcuttering for 27+ consecutive days, shopping is somewhat bizarre. Especially Whole Foods—masters of merchandising.
On the one hand I felt my head was going to explode surrounded by all the options. But, not like I was tempted, more like I was from another time and observing American culture.
Then, on the other hand I felt happy about my list (a few simple things so I could make what you see in the photo. Cranberry Pear Sauce.)
Before long I found myself staring at all the beautiful seasonal and holiday specialties like mini purple brussels sprouts and fancy mushrooms! Every thing that spoke to me, I caught myself writing a story for … “oh that would be so good roasted!” or “if I bought stroop waffles we could enjoy them with …”. That really woke me up. I was not there to fulfill a multitude of food fantasies, I was there to get the stuff to make Cranberry Sauce. I stuck with that. I left the store feeling proud. (Not to mention in an amazingly short amount of time).
Since minimizing I make sure I know why I go into a store. I feel more honest about this (that’s another challenging part of it. No emotional justifying). Shopping is fast and deliberate. It is also a bit exhausting (because I do lose focus around beautifully well-done merchandising). It feels a bit like I dropped something valuable in a lake and I have to hold my breath and go under super fast to try and find it. This is the part that worries me, although I’m proud of my project, is it sustainable long term? I believe it is, but how can I keep focus? I’m hoping that with practice and reminding myself of the value (which is so obvious and everyday. My husband and I are so much happier, for example…that’s another topic, but it is very powerful how my tackling clutter turned into our tackling clutter, and I’m thankful for that).
Oh, and today I got rid of five things from my paper drawer (most of which were pieces or mail from 2010!!)
Cristina and I started our home and retail blog (Shiz I Bought Today) in February 2012!
Last weekend we got together with a little cake to celebrate our One Year Shizaversary! Cristina has one of the sweetest homes I’ve ever seen. Soon she’ll be sharing some pics and posts. I live for house tours!
Cake is a flourless torte from Danish Pastry House, Medford, MA. If you go, be sure to try a slice of the Sacher Torte Cake! My all time favorite . . . chocolate, marzipan, a wafting of peach from a thin layer of preserves. It’s perfect.
Mimosa (up). Watermelon, cucumber, mint & cheese (below). I’d like to add that the goat cheese was good, but this salad really didn’t need it. The dressing was perfect on it’s own!
I also had a big waffle with butter good enough to drink by the glassful and berries as fresh as ever. Go here. It is delicious and warm, yet minimal. The decor plays with the charm of practicality and a light-filled space on a sunny corner. It showcases a beauty from chalkboard paint on every wall and every table. Some orange accents from chairs and wood tones too.
After weeks of not posting I’m finally moved to shop again. (I guess I’ve just been loving my new job that much, so back off retail therapy). Premier The Davis Flea last Sunday and with a pocket of cash, there I am. This Sunday I return with a camera. Are you near Somerville? Check it out. It’s very cool. It’s well curated so the ratio of cool stuff is quite high. It brings the discovery of the rural fleas to the urban realm. Convenient. Alluring. Brilliant idea! Glad it’s here. Hope it stays.
Other event treasures include live music and fresh apple-cider donuts.
The Davis Flea, founded by Greg Ghazil, Jennifer Kniff and Maureen Nuccitelli
I’ve experimented with a variety of diet types. But the most interesting discoveries happened after I read a digestion book, did a gallbladder/liver cleanse and focused on eating the least processed of foods.
The most amazing part was how inexpensive my grocery bill became! I cut out processed sugar, alcohol and coffee while increasing my consumption of fiber in things like brown rice and kale (both very inexpensive). Suddenly I was never starving. I’d get hungry at normal meal times, but it was a slow and gradual occurrence. Not the crazy-ravenous-monster-attitude with unstoppable-stomach growling like before. With that time came an interest in expensive yogurts like Siggi’s. It is expensive when you compare the volume with other yogurts. It is not expensive when you realize how little of it you’ll need to consume. I use the drinkable stuff over fruit and cereal. If you don’t feel well in general, or have new allergies, learn the digestive system.
The ancient Egyptians believed that’s where all thought and mood stemmed from. When I was a kid I thought that was the funniest thing I ever heard! Now I think it is one of the most insightful.
The weather has been gorgeous here in the Boston area! Just like summer but with naked trees. I guess it pairs with our October that looked just like winter, but with leafy trees. So confusing. To enjoy the day I went to the market and bought all kinds of fixins! I was craving a brie with green apples type thing, so I went with it. Then added on some other goodies to make it feel more like a vacation day. Then, cuz I’m spontaneous, it turned into a taste test of pricey pickles: Grillos vs. Real Pickles.
Izmir Measuring Cups, Anthropologie. Ornamental and functional these cups are beautiful enough to have just lying around, no need to actually use them. HOWEVER, you should use them because they’re delightfully handy. I admire them for their ongoing visual appeal and usefulness. They nest for easy storage, have cute pinch spouts, markings for measuring and each is a different color and design. I use them for serving nuts and olives—I get to feel fancy without putting in the effort. (The tiniest one is for the pits.) They’d also make for perfect bathroom or dresser accessories.
I never did get to have a set of those nesting Russian dolls when I was a kid, but having these seems to have filled that void.
20 cubles of pre-minced garlic or ginger for $1.99! Frozen aisle, Whole Foods. This method is tasty, flavorful and allows for a fast weeknight sautee. Save time, not flavor.
Some peeps prefer to prep fresh on the weekends. For ginger I like mincing with the Microplane or even a traditional cheese grater. Fill an ice-cube tray with the pulp, keep in freezer, same kind of deal.
We all do take out from time to time (to time and time again). Stop at the market, get some fresh garlic and herbs. Order some takeout. For the next 15 minutes take out all your daily agressions with your big chef’s knife and cutting block. Then keep your fragrant wares in these cute-as-button storage bowls. Prep for tomorrow’s dinner complete.
Beautiful Sunday to brunch with a good friend. Today we headed in the opposite direction of Boston/Cambridge for outstanding brunch cuisine (yes, seriously it is cuisine in a casual rustic space) A Tavola in Winchester. She ordered us these dessert donuts! Sometimes friends just know.
Pear and goat cheese stuffed French toast at the Ball Square Cafe, Somerville, MA.
I fell asleep on the couch last night (again). I was attempting to complete a six-season How I Met Your Mother Netflix marathon. I’ve been working on it for a few months now. I must’ve fallen asleep around 2am, woke up at 7:30. Perfect for a filling breakfast outing! Now, taking a cup of tea and back to bed for a late morning nap. Today my husband and I have been married for six years. We’re going to one of our favorite places later tonight. Until then, I shall fast.
Today I bought lemons to make Lemon Pavlova. I’ve never done this! Part one achieved. Most delicious custard I’ve ever had. Recipe from Eating Well, Feb 2011. My goal, to get luxury satisfaction on a budget. I translate this into cooking (yeah, it won’t last. Fun for today!). I bought one organic lemon to use for the zest. I’m thorough like that.