Happy Sunday! Welcome to another Small Collection, a series I started to help me focus on the things that bring me joy.
So wow—late August, hello. Who’s ready for this weeks’s descent into Pumpkin Spice Land?
1.) Though I’m not a huge fan of the syrupy sweet drinks that are about to start cropping up all over the place, I do love eating real pumpkin. Here are a few of my favorites:
- Pumpkin Black Bean Soup
- Red Lentil Chili
- Creamy Pumpkin Cranberry Oatmeal
- Pumpkin Pancakes
- Pumpkin Hummus
- Pumpkin Pie Smoothie
My palms are turning orange just thinking about all that beta-carotene deliciousness…
2.) Just thinking about September and all the business ahead has me in my weird version of nesting mode. I was working from home Thursday and Friday/trying to pretend it was the weekend, as I was on the hospital schedule for the weekend, so in addition to cleaning, running errands, and doing laundry, I made my first batch of fall-ready soup. Freezer=stocked. I made something very similar to this (minus the pumpkin/squash), mostly so I could clear my freezer of frozen veggies.
I also made black garlic pulled pork chili that did have pumpkin in it. And bourbon. Lots of bourbon. That went straight into the freezer too.
4.) Unrelated: I made eggplant dip twice this past week. This is a super-simple version where you just slice an eggplant lengthwise and bake, cut side down, at 400 for 20-30 minutes or until soft. Then you scoop out the insides and blend in a food processor with some garlic and olive oil until smooth. You could also add tahini, paprika, lemon, and/or liquid smoke for something a little richer. I was just being lazy.
5.) I found out that the song I’ve been singing him to help him wind down is the same song my mom used to sing to me when I was in utero. I find this creepy, weird, and awesome all at the same time.
6.) I love the way Patrick Stewart handled the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.
I try not to talk about my day to day work too much on the blog for confidentiality reasons, but I actually work with ALS patients one day a week in an outpatient setting. The same people wondering “how” and “why” I worked with HIV patients when I was a student are the same people asking me about my ALS work—those who know me well just know that when something feels right, I don’t shy away from it. For whatever reason, I always seem to find my way to working with individuals living with illnesses for which there is no known cure. It’s sort of related to what I was talking about last week, having a willingness to “go there” and feel the feelings. Though I wouldn’t say it’s all sunshine and rainbows, working with this population helps me tune in to the beautiful little things in life and appreciate what I have around me.
What’s brought you joy this week?