The Art of Savoring

Thank you all for the compliments on my outfit! And I wish I could’ve shared the view with you guys. Pictures are kind of like sharing, right? Now here’s something for you to feast your eyes on:

IMG_5578

I wanted to make something special with the little treasures I found the other day. I decided to start my day with a delicious bowl of overnight oats with the figs. I wanted to share the goodness so I made a bowl for my mom too! Aren’t they beautiful? Almost as beautiful as Eliza and Maya (thanks for the idea, girls). Now I can vouch for the brilliance of fresh figs in oatmeal. I was also inspired by the recipe for those yummy Sicilian fig cookies! Which meant that in this bowl I put in some golden raisins, lemon zest, vanilla extract, cinnamon, cloves, fresh figs, and honey. Since we didn’t have almonds on hand I thought, “hmm that just means I’ll have to use almond butter.” No complaints here! So refreshing and delightful to eat. In the middle of breakfast I decided to cut up a banana and mash it into my bowl. Bananas are never a bad choice in my book.

Grinding my own garam masala.

Grinding my own garam masala.

I find that when you grind your own spices the aroma comes out even more when you’re cooking. Freshly ground cinnamon wafting through the air is such a comforting smell. Everyone will keep asking you with eagerness “when’s dinner ready?”

I was inspired by my favorite dish at my favorite Indian restaurant.

I was inspired by my favorite dish at my favorite Indian restaurant, India K'raja.

The inspiration is a creamy mango sauce with homemade paneer and cooked with nuts and raisins. My take on it included paneer, pineapple, mango, freshly ground garam masala, and almond bits sprinkled on top. I wish I could’ve made more, but we were short on time and had to make due with what was in the house. Since we’re headed on our vacation today we didn’t want to overload on groceries for the week.

Butternut squash and vanilla risotto
Butternut squash and vanilla risotto

I followed this recipe, and I must say – WOW! Every ingredient in this recipe made this dish perfection in my mouth. I realized I had forgotten the salt, thankfully the saltiness from vegetable stock was enough.

Colorful pasta!

Colorful pasta!

IMG_5591I followed Katie’s alfredo sauce recipe but I added a bit of nutmeg to give it a little oomph. I also chose to make it with tofu rather than agar agar, since that’s what I had on hand. Katie, once again, two thumbs up! I love your creative recipes.

I had some leftover sauce so I figured I could mix it with the beets I roasted last night. This was my first attempt at roasting beets. It wasn’t hard, but it was messy! My fingers temporarily turned pink.

It looks funky! I also threw in some rosemary and a drizzle of honey.

It looks funky! I also threw in some rosemary and a drizzle of honey.

Beets can't help but paint everything pink!

Beets can't help but paint everything pink!

Everytime I eat or drink anything with beets I check my cheeks to see if they’re rosy. I swear if you include beets in your life (a lot of them), they are nature’s blush! It sounds like such an old wives tale, but I’d like to believe it.

What’s your favorite old wives tale?

So what’s with the title of this post? A lot of things have happened in my life that have made me take a step back and realize how precious it really is. Usually I don’t discuss my past (sounds like I’m a member of the mafia), but it seems somewhat appropriate right now. During my last week of high school, my boyfriend at the time, Chip, was killed by a fellow classmate. It was a terrible loss on so many people’s parts. Not just for the people who lost Chip, but also for the family and friends of the boy who took his life away. I’m a firm believer in the idea that things happen for a reason, even if it just straight up sucks. Anyway, that moment in my life led me to reevaluate a lot of things – reevaluating is something I think I do constantly, so it wasn’t a first. But I’ve never had someone that close to me pass away. I became very spiritual because I didn’t want to lose that connection I had with him. He was the first person I fell in love with, so it was hard to let go. Plus it’s too depressing to think that this life is it and there’s nothing afterwards. I’m not sure what the afterlife is all about, but I think there is one. I just remember the last time I saw him I was driving home and we happened to be driving next to each other. It was such a nice surprise. He was going to a meeting so we each went out separate ways. I would’ve never thought that waving him goodbye as he was making that left turn would be the last time I would see him. It just shows how life can be so fleeting. Rather than taking this as a “why me” experience in my life, I took it as more of a reason to appreciate life. It’s hard not to step outside and take a big deep breath, look up at the sky and smile at what’s around me. It’s hard to hush my laughter when I just want to burst! If I feel like dancing, I’ll dance. If I “just don’t feel like it”, I honor that feeling as well. So I guess where I’m getting at is that an important part of life for me is to savor the moment. Life should be good, but sometimes things happen, and these things are a part the journey too. Live and learn, and make the best of it.

He was the kind of person who could do something ordinary in a million different ways.

He was the kind of person who could do something ordinary in a million different ways. I noticed the patches of grass made a smiley face!

On a lighter note, I know I’ll be making the best of it while I’m away on vacation. I’m excited to give up daily responsibilities, but I’m going to miss Matilda. This is the first time me and the family will all be separated from her. Thankfully, a family friend of ours offered to take care of her while we’re gone. It’s reassuring to me because it’s hard for me to trust people to take care of her. She’s like my little baby.

What are some of the precious things you all savor?

12 thoughts on “The Art of Savoring

  1. Oh my God, that’s horrible. I have no words. I am so so sorry, Katharina.

    But on a lighter note, I am so honored that you tried another one of my recipes (and made it look better than I ever could; I love your photography skills). You are an amazing girl!

    Love,
    Katie

  2. thank you for haring this story with us sweetheart.. i’m glad you are able to take use Chip’s unfortunate tragedy and as incentive to appreciate and cherish your own precious life…that each and every day is a gift <3

    you are extremely beautiful both inside and out

    much love to you, angel
    xo, Jenny

  3. I wish that had never happened to your dear one. I am so glad that you were able to move forward by learning how to continually reevaluate and appreciate your life (and the lives of others) rather than spiral down to the end. It shows just how strong of a character you have.

  4. That risotto sounds amazing! Butternut squash and vanilla, what a brilliant relationship of flavors.

    You are too cute! I can just imagine you checking your cheeks. :)

    Hope you are having a great week love!

  5. Gosh, I am so sorry to hear about Chip. He sounds like an amazing, positive, kind, sweet person who touched your life in many ways and made you the beautiful person you are today! ( almost as beautiful as your food pictures :) ) I believe everything happens for a reason too, even if it sucks. I remember in April, I went to go visit the college I’m going to in the fall and was really disappointed because my mom didn’t come with me because her boyfriend/fiance was sick. I called her the night before I left and he had passed away at the hospital. I was completely devistated being so far away from home when it happened, but was so thankful my mom stayed at home and was with him during his last hours on Earth. Death is horrible but time cures everything. Maybe not cures, but definitely heals a lot.

    On a lighter note…my first crush in elementary school/first little kid love was with a boy named Chip! :) 4 years on the monkey bars together! :D

  6. I’m so sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine how that must feel, but you have taken the best, most reasonable approach to the situation and I admire your strength.

    I really like to savor my time with those I love. Especially my family. I see them in spurts these days but I am always in awe with what great people they are. I never want to forget how lucky I am to have them.

    How did you make that Indian recipe? Looks fantastic!! I love the smell of spices in the kitchen and have been wanting a mortar to mash my own for ages. I have an older friend in France who always cooks with a million spices and the smell of her kitchen makes me happier than anything.

    Thank you for another beautiful post!

  7. oh my dear – i am so sorry to hear about all you’ve been through. however, not only does chip seem like an amazing person, the way you have taken the tragedy of his passing and turned it into something positive is something we can ALL learn from. i could not agree with you more – bad things happen, but it’s a part of the journey. life is beautiful – and so are you! :)

  8. Hey friend, it’s been awhile.

    I share your sorrow in what is pretty powerful posted blog of yours Katharina, also, it is a friendly reminder that loved memories do last a lifetime.

    Be well,

  9. Pingback: Rise Above the Stress « Katharina’s Food Adventures

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