Super Harvest Moon

I had fully intended to take a picture of the so-called Super Harvest Moon yesterday, in the hopes of sharing it for Wordless Wednesday. In fact, I kept waiting for the moon to become visible in order for me to capture it during its rise on the evening of the autumnal equinox. First, there was another building and some trees in the way. Then, it was just barely peaking above the trees and looked nothing like the illusionary large moon they claimed I’d see — I assumed its rise behind the building was likely why I missed that. Then I took pictures. I kept trying to keep my hands steady, but apparently I was trembling more than I realized. I finally caved, switched back to trusty “kid mode,” and got a couple of lackluster images that would have required a lot of doctoring up in order to look good here. Well, at least it’s good at taking pictures of my kids! So sadly, no beautiful pictures of the Super Harvest Moon for you.


Offering An Apology

I have to admit, I’ve thought of good material to write about, and yet I can’t see to find the time to sit still for a long enough chunk of time in order to write it all out. Something’s always coming up and taking priority over my writing, and I know that I should and could make a little more effort to sit and write. However, these days my spare time seems to be going more towards job hunting and resting if I can. The baby’s returned to his former night owl ways, and it’s been very difficult to get him back on track. He’s certainly got a strong personality, that’s for sure!


Foodie Friday: Chocolate Croissants

Blame Nigella Lawson. Blame Nicki of Blame Pillsbury for their current campaign (double box tops for education on the crescent rolls). All the subliminal — okay, blatant — messages encouraged me to get into the kitchen to whip up something sweet, something different. I admit, I questioned the flavor combination of chocolate and croissants, which are traditionally meant as a savory side at all of my family’s holiday gatherings. Crescent rolls and turkey? Delicious. Crescent rolls and chocolate? Curious. So, I found myself looking for a cheap and easy option. Making croissants from scratch is arduous at best, and purchasing items from the bakery can easily get expensive. I grabbed a can of crescent rolls and a four ounce bar of semi-sweet chocolate. Here’s what happened next…

Unrolled crescent roll dough

I unrolled and pulled apart the dough. Look at those beautiful perforations. 😉

Mmm, chocolate!

Then I broke off four squares of the chocolate and broke each square in half. I fought the temptation to eat the chocolate rather than place it on the dough.

Rolled up croissant

This was the nicest looking croissant. What can I say? The pieces of chocolate hindered my ability to roll a nice crescent shape. I baked them in the oven according to the directions on the package, tailoring the temperature to suit my overzealous oven’s needs. While those baked, I took the other half of my chocolate bar and melted it in a metal bowl over a pot of simmering water. When the chocolate croissants came out of the oven, I let them cool for a few minutes while I finished melting the chocolate. Then…

Chocolate Croissants!

I iced the tops of the croissants with the melted chocolate. (This picture looked great without any photo enhancements — just look at the shiny, satiny chocolate!) I considered taking a picture of a halved croissant, but I’d bite into it and not want to take the moment to stage the rest of it. I don’t know if I would do this on a regular basis because the crescent rolls were a bit more buttery than I would have liked, but they were quite tasty. I actually wouldn’t mind filling them with pastry cream and icing them with chocolate to make a croissant eclair hybrid, though. And for less than $5, you have 8 delicious dessert pastries.


Thankful Thursday: Mindfulness and Mental Clarity

I found myself flopped over on the futon, wallowing and pitying myself earlier this evening. We had finished eating dinner, and there wasn’t really anything urgent needing to be accomplished. So, I just sort of stayed there, not really wanting to do much of anything — at the same time realizing there’s so much that could and should be done. After a few minutes, I consciously paused, told myself I had until the next commercial break to wallow, and then made the conscious decision that it was okay to feel depressed for a few moments. Even during my moment of despair, I still managed to maintain a sense of mindfulness, paying attention to my emotions and reactions to different stressors and stimuli. I reminded myself of all the uplifting content Brenda Della Casa shares on a regular basis, which includes the permission to feel bad for a bit but the reminder that feeling sorry for yourself isn’t going to fix your problems.

When the commercial break came on the TV, I got up, grabbed my water, and took a drink. And then? I went about my business. When life seems to be spiraling out of control, it’s okay to feel sorry for yourself, to feel miserable and worried. To feel is human. However, there comes a point when feeling like a victim becomes more defeating than the actual circumstances that causes the feelings of defeat in the first place. Today, I’m thankful for the ability to distinguish when it’s okay to stop and feel and when it’s time to stop feeling sorry for myself and make things happen.