Beyond the Kitchen

What It’s Really Like

pie split

Hello my darling friends.

I’ve bombarded you with a ton of melted cheese, buttered popcorn, and chocolate chunks lately.  I feel like we haven’t had the proper amount of time to catch up.

Can we just take a breath together.  Maybe have an extra cup of coffee or another half glass of wine?  Let’s absorb this Wednesday the best way we know how.

You may or may not know that I’m currently working on my second cookbook.  It’s a blessing.   It’s totally exciting.  It’s a dream come true x 2.

I’ve heard people compare writing a book to giving birth to a child.  I get it.  Writing a book is laborious and time-consuming and… actually, I totally don’t get it, nevermind.

I haven’t had any back pain or swollen ankles or excruciating pain while writing this book.  Although… I’d like to sign up for an epidural here and now, if you’re offering (which you aren’t).


You know what happens when you have a baby?  It comes out and people are STOKED.  You know what happens when you write a book?  It comes out and people write a review on Amazon.

I was doing some deep thinking this morning while washing the dishes produced from a failed pie recipe testing session…. writing a book is exactly like this for me:   I get dressed up, fancy but not tooooo fancy, to go to a friend of a friend’s party.  (stay with me… this is a very detailed analogy… there were a lot of dishes to do).  I’m wearing an outfit I feel pretty confident in, but I’m wearing my favorite, wear-them-waaaay-too-often flats because I’m interested in foot comfort on this particular evening.  I get to the party and (to my horror) discover they this particular house has instituted a no-shoes-in-the-house policy.  Gracious Lord in heaven please help me.

First panic:  I know I don’t have a pedicure on these feet, and things are starting off a little less than perfect.  Second panic: Do.My.Feet.Stink!?  I have no way of knowing…. AND!  Since this is my very own anxiety nightmare, I can’t go to the bathroom to check, I can’t leave the party, I can’t insta-pedicure my feet… I just have to sit with the self I’ve created.

Writing a book is EXACTLY like taking your shoes off at a party and hoping your feet don’t stink… or hoping people don’t notice that your feet stink.  Replace ‘feet’ with the word ‘book’ if you aren’t following my (totally ridiculous) train of thought.  You spend months and months writing a thing, preparing it for the world, trying your best to make it what you want it to be…. and at the end of the day, you just have to take your shoes off and hope to God they don’t (and your dang BOOK doesn’t) totally stink.

It’s just that.  It really is.

Aren’t SO many things like that in life?  You understand, I know you do.

In other news, I’m working on a pie chapter and I need you to come over and help me eat the pies that don’t stink.  Sidenote:  I should have a bake sale.

desk life

In addition to writing a lot, and freaking out a little (and OVERSHAING!)… I’m reading a few books.  Words going out of my brain means I need to put some words back in my brain.  I think it’s math or something.

I’m currently reading:

Lean In.  You know… that totally controversial women’s empowerment book written by  Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg.   I’m glad someone is saying the words she has said about women in the workplace.  They seem to be fighting words, but you can judge for yourself.

Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald.   Zelda was a fascinating woman and I am so enjoying this book.  It was spawned by my love of F.Scott and my recent reading of The Paris Wife (which was sooooo good).  Also, if I have a daughter, I’m naming her Zelda… I called it.

Lastly, I’m rereading The Great Gatsby because it’s better than anything that will ever come out of my brain for as long as I live.  Sometimes it’s nice to drown in that sort of work.  Also, the Baz Luhrmann film is coming out this May and I’m a little more than completely obsessed.

Mostly though, I’m testing pies, mixing cocktails, trying to make a lovely book even though it feels like a fight right now… and really, I wouldn’t change a thing (but maybe I would).  I so appreciate that you are here with me.  With my whole heart that’s true.

Note:  The top picture in the post is a recipe test for a Vegan Grapefruit Pie inspired by this recipe by Sprouted Kitchen.  (It was a fail.)

(other) Note:  The photos in this post were taken with my iPhone and tweaked using Instagram, VSCO, and Diptic…. in case you were curious.

…oh man.