Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Finding Myself In The Pages Of ‘Lost & Found’

I don’t think I realized how much emotional stuff came up for me while I was reading Lost and Found by Geneen Roth. I wasn’t aware that she had also written Women Food and God – a book that my boss was reading and that I recommended to my mother. All three of us had battled the bulge over our lifetimes. I knew that I had an emotional connection to food – and I’ve been working hard to conquer it. It wasn’t until after I read Lost and Found that I realized that I was going to have to battle my problems with money in the same way. And that my problems with money were very similar to my problems with food. I use food to comfort myself and punish myself. I do the same thing with money.

Lost and Found is about the author’s spiritual journey after she discovers that all of the hard earned savings that she and her husband had earned and set aside for retirement had been lost when Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme was exposed.  Can you imagine that? Broke and struggling to figure out what to do next, the author goes shopping for glasses – even though she doesn’t need a new pair and has other pairs at home. She needs to spend only because she can’t spend. She’s restricted by her budget.

While Roth was writing this book, her first book, Women Food and God was becoming a New York Times best-seller. In the epilogue of the book, she says that she has made back all of the money she lost with Madoff and then some. (We should all be so lucky!) It is through the celebrity of Women Food and God, that she begins doing retreats and book readings that put her in touch with other women that are struggling with food and money. She shares all of her insights in this book.

I found this book to be one that I couldn’t put down. It helped me understand why I start to have a panic attack every time that I check my bank accounts online. Why I make so many spelling errors when I write checks. Why I’m willing to buy a shirt I don’t like that’s on sale, but not a shirt that I really like that isn’t. I’m acting out my emotional relationship with money.  I recommend this book to all women who use money. If you’ve ever held a quarter in your hand and wondered whether to buy a gumball, some bread crumbs to feed the ducks or put it in your piggy bank…this book is for you. It will make you look inward, and you might not be happy with everything you see.

You'll find more interesting discussion on this topic on the BlogHer website.

This is a paid review for BlogHer Book Club but the opinions expressed are my own.

Caine's Arcade

Caine's Arcade from Nirvan Mullick on Vimeo.

I know this video takes a little time to watch, but watching the smile on this 9 year old's face is worth it.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Azaila's Easter Cake

Well, I did it. 

I made the boiled white frosting from the Joy of Cooking and there's the bird's nest cake that my grandma used to make when I was little for Easter dinner. I wish my memory of those days was a little less hazy. It's definitely not improving with age. 

Easter in Michigan can be grey and dreary affairs. Easters in northern Michigan back then could almost be guaranteed to be snow-covered, or at the very least slushy with some cold winds coming out of Canada. There had to be some reason why most of my Easter memories involve being in the kitchen with my grandma. 

She and I made the boiled white frosting and the deviled eggs. She used to put everything but the kitchen sink into her deviled eggs. And she had this special tool for mashing up the yolks before you added the mayonnaise. You can imagine my surprise when I opened up my kitchen tool drawer and found the exact masher-up in my own drawer in California. 

The eggs turned out brilliantly, and I had more than my fair share. The cake turned out...and looked pretty good at first...and then it started to melt. I think I had under whipped the eggs. Didn't really matter, it tasted good. And that's what counts. Next year, maybe I'll try something else for dessert. Who knows? Maybe I should start a California tradition.