2012 in foodwatching

Pachycadia. I don't think that is a word but it  came to mind. Perhaps it means falling into rhythm with elephants. 

As I take a swig of now cold coffee from the Indian print cup that I got at a thrift store during the fall fashion period of 2012 that I thought of as "the thing where indian prints are in fashion temporarily," I realize that I spent 2012 unconsciously. No food consciousness is not an ordinary state for me. I typically recall and capture food with emotions naturally just as I typically capture dreams in the morning and analyze them as I awake. This year was one of the most sedentary and lethargic in that aspect. 
Turning backward I begin to think of the food. I think of the tiny kitchen that I don't feel comfortable in and I realize that Suzanne's kitchen(in the house we rent) is very small and in some sense probably inspires an anxiety that forces one to cram food into one's mouth. 
There were noteworthy moments connected to food.

Great meals of 2012 revisited:

1) Pozole with Alexis, Sam, Stephanie, Sean, Joseph. I made a broth and took hominy, lettuce, fried tortilla strips, fresh lime, fresh jalapeño, chicken off of bone, avocado, and radish. I was happy to serve up these dishes to friends with a big bunch of flowers on the table.
2) I placed two cups of tequila under and vase of flowers on the day of the dead. There they sat evaporating, while the flowers slowly lost their  carnation, marigold, simple zinnia orange in the way time slowly takes from the essence of any living thing and lets it melt away.
3) A tomato crust soup with John and William. Two unlikely companions, the 1st and the 8th of my siblings rode bikes up from fells Point to get their Alpaca wool socks from our mother. John studies Political Theory at University of Dallas. I hadn't really spoken to him since his divorce. He was much better. William had started riding in the past year and lost 2/3 of his body weight. He lives in Massachusetts. But the two of them rode in bitter wind. As they arrived I cooked garlic in oil with a new garam masala i had crushed in my new mortar. I added tomato crush, leeks, and some left over spiral ham and more pepper and salt. I sauteed the leftover stale french bread from the christmas party and served the tomato leek soup with the croutons on top with the remainder of cold weather thyme from my garden while we sat talking briefly. A delight.
4) New Years day. Rula served Mansuf on her huge platter with tons of chicken cooked in yoghurt over rice. We sat with Tod, Kristen Forbes, Dave, Pablo, and friends of Pablo with children. Some drank wine. Later we played music and read I Ching. I brought paper and twine and calligraphy pens to record the I Ching readings for people and I rolled them with twine and green colored Indian paper. 
5) This has been the year of cupcakes. Celeste has been a baking fiend. We made so many cupcakes together. But her birthday I promised to have a tea party. I bought a little cake from Hamilton Bakery, one with a yellow flower on top. We sang happy birthday, and I took down the pretty porcelin music box that plays happy birthday tune, and had a tea party in the little butterfly teacups. I read her a fancy nancy story about a tea party and she was delighted. 

6) On our anniversary we had planned to eat thanksgiving dinner at 4 with Joe's parents and cousins.  This was not exactly a romantic idea. I had prepared cranberry sauce, salad, and more. But I also prepared a chocolate peanut butter cake. Still, the idea of sharing the cake and the romantic moment with a couple that embodies the worst feeling I can have about what happens to marriages, was dulling, Also, Erica, Joes' cousin wanted a Tarot reading.  That would mean our anniversary would be about time at a place where my mother-in-law- often tries to place us sitting apart, or discourages our romanticism. Her way of saying "your husband" or "your wife" drains it of what feels good. So I dreaded going. Luckily we talked about it, arrived late, and then went and sat by the fire at Todd's house with Matt, Dina, and another couple. We had cake, tequila, and played music. 

I shall continue to think on this year with fond recollections. Celeste's second year of life blending into her third. 
There was much wine. There was not enough raw food.
But there was a deepening of love, many, many oranges, clementines, apples, cups of coffee...
We began 2013 talking, drinking a real poppy bottle of sparkling. We had grapes, and toasted Celeste who got into the spirit with a cup of ginger-ale.
Fondly I recall the New Years dinner in Mexico 2007-2008 with the vasquez-gomez when we were first married by Lorena's father. We ate  grapes in the hallway after the goat baracoa, and then they married us. Late into the evening our last night there we danced in the bones of the house they were building.  Somehow I know we have another life down in Mexico with another realm of food and dreams. I hope to go this year, with Celeste. 


Indigenous Herbs, Bitter brew, healthy gall

 As I listen to the radio in the evening, I get the fuzzy half-listening tracer on a story about students studying Afro-Cuban music before taking a trip south. I am preparing a few bitters for consumption; inspired by the four dollar book on herbs recently acquired.

Being familiar with dandelion root tea as a liver detoxifier and cholegogue( bile stimulant) but never having harvested my own, I decided to go pull some dandelions for their roots, and also brew some plantain tea. This is because they are both bitters.
  Bitters are apparently helpful in digestion because they stimulate gastrin production, serotonin production in the gut, and ground people who are airy, vatta types in Ayurvedic terms. In other words, bitters are good for people who think excessively instead of acting instinctually.
    I have a cup of tea brewing in the red pot I got from Lars back in 2008. My mood is stable. I am sore from soccer/ running/ and giving massages. I will document how it goes.
  The book(shown below), an herbal almanac claims that plantain has helpful benefits for the colon, the kidneys, the bladder, the respiratory system, and that it cleans the blood. One is to drink 2-5 cups a day. Well, there is plenty of plantain in my backyard of two known varieties, Plantago major, and Plantago lanceolota.  I have known that plantain is edible all my life. When we were children it was pointed out and then sort of spread via the web of minds that was our collective hive of heads. It is just that it is so, ...bitter.  This is what is so good about it. In fact, it seems as though tasting it is part of it's benefit. We have 25 different receptors for bitterness on our tongues. Bitterness is in coffee, swiss chard, pak choi, cabbage, uncured olives, unsweetened chocolate, hops, turnip, radish, jicama, cauliflower, broccoli, miso, kale, soy, dandelion greens, dandelion roots, plantain, zuchini, hoseradish, ginseng,asparagus, brussel sprouts, arugula, orange peel, endive, and of course, bitters.    

  Apparently the German doctor, Johann Siegart, who emigrated to Bolivia expressly to aid Simon Bolivar fight the Spanish conquistadors created a signature brew of bitters, now famously used throughout the world in its bars. Angostura was the town bitters were manufactured in in 1830 and the tonic was so acclaimed that Emperor Franz Josef of Vienna has his picture on the bottle after a medal was given to the substance at the World Fair in 1873.  Today Angostura bitters are lovingly dashed into manhattans, mojitos, and lemon-lime pop/soda. I will have to try this instead of lemonade.


Gallstones still not a problem

Are you Worried and Suffering from Gallstones? No, but I wish they would dissolve, t'would be nice.

Gallstones aren't much of a problem for me. I lay on my side and massaged my belly while  I read an article about healing for Continuing ed credits for my L.M.T. relicensing. It's an astounding and comprehensive piece by Andrew Bernay-Roman. Today I had a really nice couple of cups of coffee that were helped along by a sweet note by Joe about how the coffee maker was acting funny. It must have been user error. Still, I read it and felt good. I sat and read and thought about my eeking in of dreams finally. We moved upstairs finally after months of waiting...long...story. I ate an Aunt sophie egg in the basket and drank water. Late she had a homeade apple orange juice popsicle and I worked on the new pillows for the outside party this weekend. Lunch was leftover stirfry and leftover chili and rice. THis made a little bit of a mess. I cleaned the floor with Celeste with two sponges and a blue bucket of fabuloso lavender soap. It was sweet and joyous and sucessious. I poured olive oil on my head and wrapped my hair in a pair of old little baby pants(which make a perfect headwrap) Jackson came down with lice, and even though we didn't find any, the olive oil can't hurt, and apparently it can suffocate nits and eggs. I don't think it is necessary but I am going to have shiny hair anyway. I feel like working out again. I called Radiya at the Lyn's Brick's Gym to try a 14 day free pass. So there it is. Celeste and I took a very long walk a couple of days ago through Hamilton along Harford road. It reminded me of when I was in Alexandria walking in the evening past shops, and past the tire shop on Port Suez St.
Key things I have done lately that feel good

1) Taking vitamins again. I am so far not feeling down and stressed. Perhaps that was my problem more than the delayed construction zone of a house.
2) Taking in more water in the form of pink lemonade
3) Doing more creative things, painting, sewing, writing this blog again
4) Attempting to find "kids play work" for Celeste along with my grown up work
 a) I let her paint two canvases while I repainted a table
  b) I let her help me clean the floor. She got the soapy water out of the bucket with one sponge and I focused on getting it back in, and scrubbing. This worked!
5) I found a place Celeste can go to for daycare three times a week that is nice. 7 kids, a nice space, not far, outdoor time, circle time, letters, music, and a nice lady running it. I was hoping to find an outlet like this for both of us
6) Jackson is into gymnastics. I am pleased to see him grow.
7) I am back into learning and healing through relicensing studies for massage. This always helps.

~ life is good, takes work, so be it, I'm making good on dreams over here~

To focus on the Gallstone healing process
  `Smoothies are better when you need a snack and feel down because they hydrate you and provide fresh vitamins and fiber'
'A problem that stresses you out is better when you are nourished and in motion. Depression and fatigue can often be remedied by first changing something about how you are holding your body'


Cornucopia, monad, now. All that you are is now returning into the next moment.  So much of the struggles I keep dragging into the next moment are sealed in with the ritual foods I express connection with. Coffee seals in a long moment. Food seals in the energy level of the day. Meals with Joe and Celeste seal in our unity. A glass of wine together seals in our hope for the future romance and pleasure together.  We have so many seals. Fasting, abstaining, going dry, and cleansing are so powerful that we stay tired and even moody to avoid transformations. The threads are there to shift, you only have but to pull them and the whole clogged mechanism of the soul seems to release toxins, trials, shifts and emotions to transform. Here's to it all....


Happy New Year from Watching your every food. I ate 5 olives before I went to bed the last night of the year to represent the big stones that nestle in my gallbladder. They don't bother me much, but all the same, I nod to them. 


My Cleansing and Finances Story

W * A * T* C* H *: The real "processed" food is when you think about what you eat

The Art of the Cure

Good morning healthites:

After coffee and a bite of last night's chocolate espresso cupcakes, I turned to the food of healing. I hollowed out a peeled cucumber and stuffed it with capers and threw in a Spanish olive. I wrapped a lovely purple-veined beet leaf around it and put it onto this art nouveau inspired plate with a couple of lettuce.


2 waters, 2 coffees, 2 beet leaf caper parsley sprout rolls

Breakfast for 1:

Balance and moderation are the key to liver and gallbladder health. I swear by this eternally. Bile was once a sign of anger. There was yellow and black bile. This word brings up the image of Othello seething at the mouth, his fierce moorish lust only toppled by his jealous foolish gut. Bile remains the underlying slow wrenching force of self-drowning eating of the earth all the days of your adamantine life. A dose of sugar and fat for the wish for love's eternity. Say it isn't so!!!! The freshest air could cure the deepest woe. Trouble is we run to oases thinking that they could be a place to bring our pain and so they are. Pain is dragged across the earth for want of an open window. So pray deeply to the god of epiphany for only she knows how to pry open those moments. Some turn to entheogens or drugs, but I turn inward in a different search to find those moments of change.

Here is what I had this morning.
2 waters
2 coffees
2 beet leaf wraps with sprouts and capers and a hint of parsley and a diced radish.

I feel so good this way. I swear.


Almondmilk Fairy blood Bagua of Yeast

Dear People,
Peer into me while having coffee. I am reading Fiskadoro, or wanting to edit it as I read it so that I like it better, and I think, 'sun on the balcony' and then I think 'coffee in small ceramic cups.' Its a food tied directly to an emotion AND a circumstance.
The way she could escape college seminars into long bouts of cigarettes and coffee cups carried over from the pleasure of being jammed into a Denny's booth with a racket of skateboarders from a city nearby. The twins with the Bruce Willis' voice boxes, and Kenny with camera eyes and footage. No one had to know that she was a secret person. It was a blurred all night picture from a dream in which no one turns to you and says, 'How about you...?' Something had kept them all from asking this question, from exposing her before she could flick off the switch, rapel out of the nightmare of being observed too closely. Gratefully anonymous, now she imagined herself, and this quiet self of hers involved in the hand to mouth of smoke and coffee, was as involute, and deadening as sucking a thumb long into prepubescence.

Dear People,
Food cannot change emotions. It changes your body. It zooms in and up to your globed eyes, and your body says, "Oh yes, now I feel even. But insidious as coffee is, it is like guerillla warfare where your eyes have a pelucid infant clarity hidden in the brush tasting the air, wildly alert yet immobile, while your energy is lost in the dark echo of your body being impelled by a heartbeat unnaturally fast for your stillness. So food changes something that lead to emotions but I'd say an emotion is a folk concept, anachronistic, and yet still an effective meaningful compound idea. So food can change the sounds you pay attention to, or the way you walk through woods with filtered light, or bound up the apartment steps, or shlup across the hall, which certainly affects what you feel. . But it is the true 'even' that cools temper. It is the 'even' that remains compelling. I seek the 'even' as its own form of high. The even of mint and almond milk with a hint of pineapple. It is like drinking the blood of a fairy. Emotions can be so potent in their 'even' form. The heightened essence of dread is trumped by the rarified unattached smoothness of presence.

It was the way I felt that morning without a bra on in a white T shirt. I went for Dunkin Donuts drinks, age twenty. I lay my head on his lap, silent tiny fetal cells winnowing. Don't be so clingy he said. On the red sofa made by the scorpio ballet dancer on cocaine, I felt a moment of longing so destructive I must have killed myself in order not to remember its full length and breadth. I wanted to force him to love me, the tips of my nipples turning up in jitterbug love for the hormones of milk. He was folding his origami legs under himself, perhaps, he was only responding to my smell shifting; responding to smelling the future decade of burn scars peeling and searing below a lithe snake-woman stare.

Dear people,
Body is mind. All is mind. Eat better psychic food. Has anyone ever seriously claimed that all is body? Its all food. Mind is food. Mattmuirhead relayed the point that 'will' is nothing real. Destruction of anachronistic philosophical constructs is a good idea. They represent clutter in the psyche. Lets not get to burning books or anything. What if I tried to 'be' Zen Essence' in Farenheit 451? If mind is food, then I am not eating well. If mind is matter, why are things still so contrary and obstinant?
We are still separate from somethings. Things will make you angry and will make you sad. They differ in mind from your mind's differences. The 'Other' is looking back through the keyhole at you. Here is the true dualism. And so when I say I am trying to purge the unnatural length of emotions, I mean this. However I know that food is both psychic and physical. I think I eat more psychic food and I spend more time with psychic food than physical food. We must purge differences by separating them from ourselves. Or by rising up from them and caring less about them by pretending to care more. Ah, such fundamental irritants! I am allergic to this medicine.
Oh for laconic spirits to leave me to a strict materialism for once!!

Dear People,
I tried to move around the physical things in my space in order to change my life. Can you clean your mind by cleaning your home?
I started yeast from flour and water in the corner of the bagua associated with love and relationships. After the little microorganisms flourished, I fed them honey until they died of shock and pissed themselves. I hung up a strand of chili peppers instead and put our sun-fearing plant in the window until you said, honey, the purr plant doesn't like all that sunlight. But the chili peppers were a good idea. I still have tender bruises on my thighs. I moved the plant. I moved everything around ferociously for days. Notebooks and tarot cards and every book on healing, painted purple onto an old painting, and tied a red ribbon around a drain. I'm sort of a neophyte at Earth. I can't quite decorate using space instead of items. Books sing a low hum of soul spinning at 65,000 miles an hour eternally. I can't believe things have less of an effect as the way you think about them. Mind and matter blend and blurr. I am the rug for an hour. I am the computer screen. I am oily onyx stain under my fingernail from making pine poles into window curtain rods.

After awhile you can move beyond all the things. These physical things you touch which seemed to weigh on you, are now all made of the same thing as you. You have put them in a place, is all.

Dear People,
I hope one person gets beyond things until they find this. A sort of deep end sounding for treasures. What if I made psychic smoothies? What sort of curious herbs would I seek? What sort of emotion sifting plants would I grow in the windowsill by the basil for such smooth, 'even' tempers as I pretend to desire? How do you grow a soul?

She was tiny, soft blond curls in sweat. COuldn't have been more than a year old or more than six inches from the curb of the thruway. It was a fragile distance and yet as I watched, the child, alone as an adult at a bus-stop, waited and watched the world from her considerate stance. In the late afternoon light, I could almost believe the girl was watching the sun's descending rays gilding an old row-house as she thought of the rushing cars and her own death so close by. Her patience with precariousness slowed the world, spun destinies in the tiny fingers of her small hand. I didn't want to save her. I wanted to watch her choose.