- I’m having a slight change of heart about productivity. Specifically, mine. I tend to beat myself up about all those times when I just CANNOT settle down to work. All the wasted hours. But you know what? When I do focus (either because forced by deadline, or because I’m just ready), I’m really, really productive. I work extremely fast. So it would be great if I could focus all the time – given my apparent powers of superspeed I could get soooo much done. Wouldn’t that be awesome? But maybe the rest periods are a necessary part of the process. I don’t faff so much when the work I have to do is more concrete (eg updating my accounts). Just the creative bits, or the bits where I have to really concentrate hard – it takes me a while to get my head in gear for that. Still, it would be pretty cool if I could somehow align the faffing-about parts of the process with those times that would in any case be unproductive. (Like when the kids are occupied, but around.) Come on, brain. Get on it.
- Related: I keep wondering how to tell where the line is between clear-eyed self-knowledge and unreasonable self-criticism. Between rationalisation and actual understanding of the factors behind my failings. Haven’t found an answer yet.
- With all of Netflix at my disposal (not ALL of Netflix, actually, a lot of things my US or UK friends recommend aren’t available here), suddenly all I want to watch is Gossip Girl. From the beginning. And even I don’t understand why. Except that trashy TV is undemanding and entertaining, and you know? The clothes. I’m really enjoying the clothes.
- I seem to be pretty stupid for an intelligent person. Things I seriously don’t understand, on any level: trigonometry. The Big Bang. How computers actually work. I harbour the fond delusion that these are things I might understand if I just took the time to learn, but I have to admit, I have tried plenty of popular science books and finished them about as stupid as when I started. If asked what made me believe I’m intelligent at all, I would say my intelligence applies to learning things fast (except drawing and photo editing software), to language and communication (except after four years I’m still pretty shit at German), retaining information (except German grammar)… Let’s just say there are some holes in the theory of me being intelligent.
- I think my biggest problem right now is that I’m struggling to let go of certain ideas about myself. I never saw myself as a hausfrau, so I hate having that label now; I hate that this is how people see me because it doesn’t feel like ME. But so what? There’s a lot to enjoy about this life. Nobody expects me to get a job; nobody thinks poorly of me for staying home with the kids. I just resent the idea I have of their idea of me. And I wish I could say I had this or that exciting position, because I feel like that would make me more valued and interesting. But that’s my problem. It’s just ego. I don’t even think badly of other mothers without jobs; if that’s what works for them, cool. But somehow I find it super hard to accept that this is how it is for me right now, and it may not be by choice, but it works just fine. Get a grip, Robynn.
Nos 34, 35 & 36 of #52recipes: lemon blueberry muffins (tasty, but a bit doughy); this delicious chicken and these potatoes to go with it. Honey was a bit of a sneak ingredient in the potatoes, and not what I was expecting. I think I might leave it out next time – it’s undeniably good, but I’d honestly prefer a more salty/lemony emphasis. The chicken was amazing, though I made quite a few ingredient changes, taking it in a more mundane but still delicious direction – lemon instead of lime, no coriander or jalapenos, quark instead of cream.
But y’know what really makes me feel clever isn’t following recipes; it’s pulling ingredients together from multiple dishes to make for really efficient meal planning. And on that score I did SUPER WELL this week. I roasted a butternut and used it for (a) pasta, with goat’s cheese and toasted cashews; (b) pancakes; (c) risotto, with more goat’s cheese and the leftover sauce from that amazing chicken, and topped with shaved ham bought from an honesty fridge up on the mountain today. (I love Switzerland.) I also have roast veg left over from the chicken meal, which I’ll be turning into soup. The kids will hate it, but the kids are idiots.