The Joy Project

Little Moments of Big Love

Category: For your belly

Forever Young

I like to think that when it comes to being a hypochondriac, I was a bit of a child prodigy.

My earliest memory of my certain and imminent death came after 5th grade sex ed class. I now know that I should have come back from that class feeling sorry/horrified for my male classmates and the fact that they had to walk around every day attached to penises, which are probably the weirdest and most poorly behaved pets in the universe. But I was too busy planing my funeral, because I was sure that I not only had AIDS, but I was also pregnant!

What led me to belive such things? Was I sexually active in 5th grade, you ask? Well no (boys are gross!), but that certainly didn’t matter. Because I was achy and had a runny nose, which was undeniable proof that I was very, very sick and also soon to be a mother.

I’m also quite certain I had scarlet fever when I was young. I remember fevered dreams, passing in and out of consciousness, my family surrounding my death-bed, just like Beth in Little Women (in my memory I am wearing a night-cap and the room is lit by candlelight). Although when I ask my mom about it, she claims it was “just” strep throat and I only missed two days of school. Pssh.

I also discovered a brain tumor after an especially poignant episode of ER (headache), self-diagnosed  a very severe case of dengue fever while travelling in Brazil (heat rash), and during the height of the anthrax attacks in 2001, I cried on my bathroom floor, begging for Cipro, and, certain the terrorists had targeted me and Tom Brokaw, I told my parents goodbye (urinary tract infection).

You don’t even want to know about all the scary and terminal illness that pop up when you type in “tired” “malaise” “hungry” and “itchy dry skin” into Web MD. I was certain I would never make it past 24 years old and people would talk about me like they do James Dean and WWII soldiers, and children with cancer, and everyone else who was so brave but died before their time, may God rest their souls.

And then a miracle happened.

I fell in love.

I fell in love with this healthy, glorious, Adonis-like creature who takes vitamins and eats tofu and wears spandex when he exercises and is brimming with energy and fervor.

And suddenly I want to live, to LIVE goddamnit!

I want to be with this man forever, into old age, and then die together at exactly the same time like that old couple who died spooning on the bed in that movie Titanic, or at least like June and Johnny Cash, separated by only a few miserable, lonely months apart.

To ensure our mutual health, I’ve stocked our cabinets with coconut water and kale and fish oil. I monitor our aluminum cans for BPA and spring for the organic apples (why do I have to pay twice the amount for the worm hole and bruises?). We wear seat belts and have a gun safe and an emergency plan in case of zombie and/or gas attacks. I keep my mind fresh by doing math problems in my head, I have daily stretches, and I never, ever microwave the Tupperware! Like a modern-day Clair Huxtable, I worry about his sodium consumption and his blood pressure. If only Rudy would stop feeding him sweets!

I just read this awesome article on the New York Times about a Greek Island that has an above average amount of old people and where plagues like alzheimer’s and cancers are kept at bay. They called it “The Island Where People Forget to Die.” It made me happy! We can do this, he and I. If we drink enough red wine and eat our leafy greens, we can be together forever.

It’s funny how the fear of losing something you love so dearly can make you seize life so fervently.

The photo is also from the New York Times article, and also what I hope my man looks like some day.


An Apple A Day

How cute is this calendar from AOK aimed at helping insurance consumers lead a healthier life?

I would like similar but with martinis instead of apples…

If I Were A Rapper My Name Would Be Sir-Snacks-A-Lot

I’m trying to lose some of my “I’m happy to be in a relationship-we stay home and eat cupcakes” weight, while trying to avoid becoming permanently Crungry (Cranky-hungry) or Hangry (Hungry-angry).  So I made these tasty little devils today.  Delicious! And full of yummy fiber and protein.

I ended up eating the whole batch, basically defeating my efforts to be healthy.  But hey, no one is perfect…except Tina Fey.  Swoon.

Cheesecake Strawberries

Turns out when I’m left alone on a Saturday night with a box of wine and no chaperones things can get pretty crazy.

I got caught up on my facebook, my email, my pinterest, and my celebrity gossip.  Finished a book, took a bath, swept the floor, and clipped the cat’s toe nails.  And still it was only ten o’clock.  So I decided to drink more wine and make this recipe from nutmeg nanny .  Turns out it’s easy enough to make, even while slightly intoxicated.


Let Them Drink Boba Tea!

Karen and I travelled to visit the lovely Dada in SF, before she packed her bags for a new and illustrious adventure with Starbucks in Seattle.  We ate a lot.  And did some walking.  And looked for Uncle Jesse at the Full House house. I sure love that city.  And those girls.

Like all the best things in life, this sounds really gross

We had our regular Ladies Wine Night this Saturday and the theme was pink wines.

We’re talking, rose’s, Zins, Franzia…FYI; just like jean jackets, pink wine is in this season, so mock me a little for being a borderline red neck but I am considered “fashion friendly” this summer by all the cool people.

Anyhoo, the wine was delicious, and we wore pink and made pink food and swore up a pink storm and it was wonderful.

I made this watermelon-feta-red onion salad recipe. It smelled weird and sounded freaky, but darn was it good.  And quick.

We talked about adding some salt, white pepper, and lime to the recipe. Another gal once put it on arugula.  Play with the recipe and let me know how it turns out.

Mahi Mahi with Green Curry

OMG. I made this for dinner and it was amazeballs and really easy!

You gotta try it!

You’ll have way too much left over curry so save it to put over veggies and meat later in the week. Or half the recipe.

Also, I used low-fat coconut milk which worked just fine.  And I added broccoli and swiss chard because I like lots of green.

Find the Sunset magazine recipe here.

Egg White Sweet Potato Fry Omelette with Habanero Hot Sauce For Dinner

RBC Dinner Club

While on vacation a few years ago a nice Canadian man and his attractive son dubbed my girlfriends and I the Raunchy Book Club. I think this was on account of our knowledge of cerebral topics, endless supply of nerdy books and our propensity to do Mad Libs using sailor-like language.

We took it as a compliment and considered getting t-shirts made.

While on that same vacation we also perfected a method to dinner that includes only finger foods and lots of wine…perfect for sitting around and snacking during a long night of laughing, catching up, and swearing.  We’ve had many lovely RBC dinners since then. The concept always stays the same but the foods change; we love loads of stinky cheeses and fresh basil, membrillo, dried mango, dark chocolate with ginger, homemade bread, queso oaxaca and plenty of strawberries.

We call it “RBC dinner” and the beauty is that it requires zero cooking, little cleaning up, and everyone can bring something to contribute. It leaves the hostess free from stress and with plenty of energy and time to gossip and tell dirty jokes.

Last night Karen and I hosted our first RBC dinner with a man friend.

We had been hoping to get together with Charlie to cook fish tacos and impress him with our ability to wine and dine. But life happens and there never seemed to be enough time to put on a full proper dinner party. So we kept delaying.

Finally we broke down and asked Charlie to forgive us and forget the wining and dining and instead join us for RBC dinner in the car port. No stress zone; only things you could quickly make and bring to share. Karen made hummus, Charlie brought fruit salad. There was guacamole and angel food cake (from the store! gasp!) with fresh fruit and of course, plenty of wine.

We laughed and burned things in the chiminea and sat in the hammock and gossiped and focused on being with each other instead of trying to impress each other and it was wonderful.

RBC forever!

Radish Sprouts!

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