Blogroll

When I'm not here, you may find me wandering the pages below. (If I'm a regular visitor to your site and I've left your link off or mislinked to you, please let me know! And likewise, if you've blogrolled me, please check that my link is updated: thisroamanticlife.blogspot.com. The extra (a) makes all the difference!)

Archives

For posts sorted by date or label, see the links below.

For posts on frequently referenced topics, click the buttons to the right.

To search this blog, type in the field at the top left of the page and hit enter.

Body: in sickness and in health

I won't lie; this body and I have had our issues with each other for many years. Body image -- sure. Physical and mental overextension -- comes with being a Type A kind of girl. I still struggle with these things, so they show up from time to time in my writing.

More recently, illness, pure but not simple, has added itself to the mix in a multi-system sort of way. And the challenges in figuring out exactly what's gone wrong are many. As problems have revealed themselves in the last few years, beginning with reactive hypoglycemia in late 2008, I've documented them here, partly to gain a little clarity on managing complex conditions but mostly to give voice to vulnerabilities I feel but don't normally share with anyone face to face. Better out than in, they say, right? (Oh yes, humor is one way I deal.)

The links below cover the different angles I've examined (and from which I've been examined) within that experience.

Travel: neither here nor there

When the person you're married to lives two time zones away, you log a fair number of frequent flier miles. And if you blog about commuter relationships, you log quite a few posts en route too.

Since we're no longer in separate places, I blog less often from airports. But we do travel -- together now! -- which is much more fun to write about. So in addition to thoughts on our years of commuting, the links below cover the places we've been as a pair and, in some cases, the adventures that have happened on the way.

Writing: the long and short of it

Why do I do it? Good question. Maybe it's not so much that I like to write but that I have to write, even when the words refuse to stick to the page. Believe me, I've tried doing other things like majoring in biochemistry (freshman fall, many semesters ago). Within a year, I'd switched to English with a concentration in creative writing and wasn't looking back.

After graduating, I taught English for a few years and then worked as an editor, which I still do freelance. In 2007, I applied and got into an MFA program at a place I like to call Little U. on the Prairie. I finished my degree in 2011 and have been balancing tutoring and writing on my own ever since.

The following links cover the writing I've done about writing: process, content, obstacles, you name it. It's not always pretty. But some part of me loves it, even when it's hard. And this is the result.

Heart: family and friends

I'd have a hard time explaining who I am without being able to talk about the family I grew up in as well as the people I've met beyond its bounds. But even with such context, it's not easy! In the simplest terms, I'm a first-generation Asian-American who has spent most of this life caught between cultures. That, of course, doesn't even begin to describe what I mean to, but there's my first stab at the heart of it all.

That's what this group of posts is reserved for -- heart. The essential parts of my life whose influences I carry with me, for better or worse. The links below cover what I've written as I've learned how these forces work within me, for me, against me, in spite of me. They anchor me even as they change me, and they keep life interesting.

Recommended reading

What do I do when there's too much on my mind and my words won't stick to the page? I escape into someone else's thoughts. Below is a collection of books and articles that have been sources of information, inspiration, and occasional insight for my own work.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Life is a bowl of cherry bombs

Cherry bomb peppers, that is.

You might remember that I briefly mentioned getting to pick our own produce at a vegetable farm when D and I had our getaway weekend in Yakima. Since then, we've been working our way through some delicious peppers that we picked (see below -- and yes, you can laugh; I'm hearing the nursery rhyme in my head too). It was great fun -- we just drove our car to the field behind the farm stand, parked it, and stepped out into rows of pepper plants (that's what happened to be ripe). The aroma was incredible.


The only problem was that none of the pepper plants were labeled. There were long red peppers growing next to short green ones, and sometimes there were even peppers of different colors on the same plant. D and I looked at the field, looked at each other, then looked at the field again. "Okay, I guess we just pick whatever looks good!" he said, and we waded in.

We weren't really concerned with the general flavor of pepper -- roasted, stir-fried, scrambled with eggs; all of it sounded good to us. We just wanted to be prepared for any extra spiciness in our meals. So before we left, we cross-referenced our selections with what was on display at the farm stand. That's how we learned that the cherry bomb is a pepper to be handled with care.

Now, yesterday, I came home to a distinct change in the weather after visiting Almost Dr. Sis. It was cold. As in, down-into-the-30s-at-night cold. And that means it's time to put our cherry bombs to good use! So tonight, we are making white bean chili with them in honor of all things autumn. Mmmm mmm mmmmmm. I love temperatures that make me want to curl up with a warm blanket and a bowl of spicy goodness.

It was quite cool in Almost Dr. Sis's part of the country too. The leaves were just beginning to change color everywhere, which made for a gorgeous backdrop while we were picking apples over the weekend (are you sensing a common interest yet?). We filled two giant bags with fruit -- the perfect accompaniment to baked acorn squash filled with roasted corn pudding. Props to Almost Dr. Sis for finding the amazing recipe here.


It's hard to believe my week of long-awaited sister-time is over already, but that's okay. Almost Dr. Sis AND Marketing Sis are coming to Seattle for Thanksgiving! (The plans are official as of this past weekend.) And Almost Dr. Sis will be bringing her boyfriend, whom I met during my visit (such a sweet guy). I can't wait!

There's more I want to write about from the last few days, but my next thesis deadline is in 48 hours, so I'm off to polish up the pages I wrote while I was traveling. Updates soon ...

2 comments:

French Fancy said...

I love peppers but unfortunately over the last couple of years have become the sort of person who cannot eat them - nor cucumber or onions either. I seem to have turned into my father with regards to my digestion. I do love the look of them though - and their crisp tangy smell.

How's the cat doing? (sorry, I can't remember her name)

Contemporary Troubadour said...

Jada's doing quite well, FF :). She's comfortable enough with us to look for an open lap to jump into (rather than our having to invite her), and she seems to have learned in the last week not to meow for us at 5 a.m. D has been trying to train that out of her.

Ah, cucumbers and onions -- also two much-loved foods around here. I wonder, do dried peppers cause you trouble? If not, they're nice for flavor in soups too.

Posts by date

Posts by label

Air travel Airline food Allergic reactions Astoria Awards Bacteremia Bacterial overgrowth Baggage beefs Bed and breakfast Betrayal Blues Body Boston Breastfeeding British Columbia California Canada Cape Spear Clam-digging Colonoscopy Commuter marriage Cooking CT scans Delays Diagnoses Dietitians Doctor-patient relationships Doctors Eating while traveling Editing Endocrine Endoscopy ER False starts Family dynamics Feedback Food anxiety Food sensitivities Gate agent guff GI Halifax Heart Home-making House hunting Hypoglycemia In-laws Intentional happiness Iowa Journaling Kidney stones Knitting Lab tests Little U. on the Prairie Liver function tests Long Beach Making friends in new places Malabsorption Massachusetts Medical records Medication Mentorship MFA programs Miami Monterey Motivation Moving Narrative New York Newark Newfoundland Nova Scotia Olympic Peninsula Ontario Ophthalmology Oregon Oxalates Pancreatic function tests Parenting Parents Paris Pets Photography Portland Prediabetes Pregnancy Process Professors Publishing Reproductive endocrine Research Revision Rewriting Rheumatology San Francisco Scenes from a graduation series Scenes from around the table series Seattle Sisters Skiing St. John's Striped-up paisley Teaching Technological snafus Texas Thesis Toronto Travel Travel fears Traveling while sick Ultrasound Urology Vancouver Victoria Voice Washington Washington D.C. Weight When words won't stick Whidbey Island Why we write Workshops Writers on writing Writing Writing friends Writing in odd places Writing jobs Yakima

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Life is a bowl of cherry bombs

Cherry bomb peppers, that is.

You might remember that I briefly mentioned getting to pick our own produce at a vegetable farm when D and I had our getaway weekend in Yakima. Since then, we've been working our way through some delicious peppers that we picked (see below -- and yes, you can laugh; I'm hearing the nursery rhyme in my head too). It was great fun -- we just drove our car to the field behind the farm stand, parked it, and stepped out into rows of pepper plants (that's what happened to be ripe). The aroma was incredible.


The only problem was that none of the pepper plants were labeled. There were long red peppers growing next to short green ones, and sometimes there were even peppers of different colors on the same plant. D and I looked at the field, looked at each other, then looked at the field again. "Okay, I guess we just pick whatever looks good!" he said, and we waded in.

We weren't really concerned with the general flavor of pepper -- roasted, stir-fried, scrambled with eggs; all of it sounded good to us. We just wanted to be prepared for any extra spiciness in our meals. So before we left, we cross-referenced our selections with what was on display at the farm stand. That's how we learned that the cherry bomb is a pepper to be handled with care.

Now, yesterday, I came home to a distinct change in the weather after visiting Almost Dr. Sis. It was cold. As in, down-into-the-30s-at-night cold. And that means it's time to put our cherry bombs to good use! So tonight, we are making white bean chili with them in honor of all things autumn. Mmmm mmm mmmmmm. I love temperatures that make me want to curl up with a warm blanket and a bowl of spicy goodness.

It was quite cool in Almost Dr. Sis's part of the country too. The leaves were just beginning to change color everywhere, which made for a gorgeous backdrop while we were picking apples over the weekend (are you sensing a common interest yet?). We filled two giant bags with fruit -- the perfect accompaniment to baked acorn squash filled with roasted corn pudding. Props to Almost Dr. Sis for finding the amazing recipe here.


It's hard to believe my week of long-awaited sister-time is over already, but that's okay. Almost Dr. Sis AND Marketing Sis are coming to Seattle for Thanksgiving! (The plans are official as of this past weekend.) And Almost Dr. Sis will be bringing her boyfriend, whom I met during my visit (such a sweet guy). I can't wait!

There's more I want to write about from the last few days, but my next thesis deadline is in 48 hours, so I'm off to polish up the pages I wrote while I was traveling. Updates soon ...

2 comments:

French Fancy said...

I love peppers but unfortunately over the last couple of years have become the sort of person who cannot eat them - nor cucumber or onions either. I seem to have turned into my father with regards to my digestion. I do love the look of them though - and their crisp tangy smell.

How's the cat doing? (sorry, I can't remember her name)

Contemporary Troubadour said...

Jada's doing quite well, FF :). She's comfortable enough with us to look for an open lap to jump into (rather than our having to invite her), and she seems to have learned in the last week not to meow for us at 5 a.m. D has been trying to train that out of her.

Ah, cucumbers and onions -- also two much-loved foods around here. I wonder, do dried peppers cause you trouble? If not, they're nice for flavor in soups too.