I heart Barbara Kingsolver
As an adult, I find I have an increasingly poor relationship with my food. In fact, I would be perfectly happy to not eat for days. Unfortunately, my stomach has different ideas. In general, I don't like to cook and have little patience for cleaning the kitchen. We order a lot of takeout in this house, but I REALLY don't like all the waste that takeout involves and it's not very easy on my waistline.
When I was a kid, we ate very well. We had a gigantic garden in our backyard and my mom baked bread, canned tomato sauce, whipped up crabapple jelly and generally fed us pretty naturally. I gorged myself on meat and sugared cereal whenever I visited either set of grandparents, who were of course convinced that I was going to be terminally unhealthy on my mostly-vegetarian diet.
As an adult, I've increasingly relied on convenience foods and drive-thru dinners. We go through phases where we eat very well, and of course we grow a bit of food in our front-yard garden every summer. This year we added our chickens and a CSA share to the mix but ultimately, we avoid the grocery store like the plague and eat an awful lot of meals delivered from Pizza Hut. Even as I type this, my stomach is rumbling because I don't feel like making myself breakfast (even though there are a dozen-and-a-half yummy backyard eggs in the fridge, just waiting to be scrambled up). My weight has gone up with each of my pregnancies and just won't go back down again. I can't help but thing that my refined sugar-heavy diet is to blame. I like being able to pop the top (or hand my credit card over at the drive-thru window) and satisfy the cravings for a few hours.
Listening to Barbara Kingsolver (she reads the audio version herself in a lovely, soothing, slightly-drawling voice) talk about the wonderful, important place good food takes in their lives and, even more impactfully, to her daughter talking about how her upbringing has affected HER relationship with food makes me want to try, yet again, to revamp my own stunted attitude about food. Why is it so difficult? I know what I want to do, but I just can't seem to bring myself to do it. Even with our CSA share, countless veggies rotted on our counter and in our vegetable bins before heading out to the compost pile. There were only a few weeks when I really got into cooking up all those great local veggies. The meals were wonderful, and I had a noticeable boost in mood and energy levels. I just can't seem to keep it up, though.
I once heard someone say that the main challenge of exercise was putting your legs in shorts. I think it's the same way with me and cooking (and cleaning, and any other number of things I really want to do but keep putting off). If anyone has any secrets about how to get yourself to "just do it", I'm all ears!