Motivational Monday…Vorfreude

Vorfreude…what’s that, you say?? It’s a German word that means “the joyful, intense anticipation that comes from imagining future pleasures”. I was looking for inspiration for my Motivational Monday and thought, “anticipation” is always motivational/inspiring. In looking back at previous posts over the years, it’s a theme I’ve revisited more than a couple of times. I guess that means that I love having something to look forward to….oh, and this study shows that it’s always a good idea! 

You cannot direct the wind, but you can adjust the sails!

Motivational Monday…Serenity

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

(I know I’ve posted this before, but sometimes I just need a little reminder)

You cannot direct the wind, but you can adjust the sails!

Motivational Monday…Why We Pizza Monday!!

“Breaking bread is not only food inside your stomach,
it’s love you feel.”

— Yassin Terou, Syrian refugee and restaurant owner

2nd generation Pizza Monday-ers!

3rd generation Pizza Monday-ers!

You cannot direct the wind, but you can adjust the sails!

Foodie Friday…Pretty Pasta FUN!

I’m not sure how I got there (possibly @wrightkitchen …gorgeous pics), but through some mutual Instagrammers that I follow…you know “you might like” “friend’s of” etc… I landed on @saltyseattle and followed her. Go check out her Insta account right now and just look at her gorgeous pasta creations! They’re colorful, fun and whimsical!

I was very lucky, and so excited, a few months ago to win The Cook’s Atelier cookbook from another Instagrammer, @thefrancophiles (have I mentioned how much I love Paris & France in general?) I’ve looked, from cover to cover, through the stunning photos and loved the stories that are shared about French life and the mother-daughter journey of getting to this place in their lives, but wow those recipes take some dedication and time. I think I am going to try the gougère recipe at some point, but that might be my only foray into French cooking. This leads me back to Salty Seattle and the excitement of finding out she had a cookbook coming out in October. Seemed a bit more manageable and fun for me.

Oh, how I wanted to make fun pasta! I ordered the book, borrowed a pasta making machine from a friend, shopped for the very specific ingredients, and had so much fun this past Saturday trying my hand at pasta making. First I read her very funny commentary throughout the book, which made it less cook-booky and then dove right in. Some people start with basics, perfect them, and then move on to the “advanced” techniques….but that’s not me. I’m impatient and wanted to make polka dot pasta, so I skipped to the “advanced pasta sheeting techniques” section and went for it! I wanted red pasta with black dots. The end result wasn’t perfect…I’m also not a perfectionist…but it was reasonably two toned, fun to make and gives me something to practice and strive for next time….i.e thinner dough, more “black” ingredient, and use of a rolling pin when making patterned dough to make it more manageable.

this one came out a light gray…will perfect the black next time!

looks a bit like watermelon instead of polka dots, but I’m not discouraged!

I realized when I was done, that the rolling out of the dough and the feeling of accomplishment when I was done was a bit akin to Pizza Monday. A fun activity that delivers yummy results…and probably different every time, like pizza! I envision future pasta making sessions with the grandkids…fun and messy…and kind of like playing with playdough!! Yes, I’m getting a simple pasta machine for myself!

Go buy this cookbook, check out her Youtube channel, and have fun making colorful pasta…no dyes, just natural colorants from nature!

You cannot direct the wind, but you can adjust the sails!

Never Stop Learning!…courtesy of the NYT

So, this past Sunday I was reading the NY Times, as I do every Sunday. The front-page news is required reading, no matter how hard, it’s necessary…the incomprehensible inhumanity to man, the ridiculous politics of our day, and, at the bottom of the page, the hope of what’s to come in the articles and pages that follow. (I’m sorry, in advance, if you can’t open/read the articles I’ve linked here…I think you can read 10 or less if you’re not a NYT subscriber??) Why did this week’s edition resonate more with me…that I felt like writing about it?

There’s the obligatory book review to see what’s new and what I need to add to the reading list; the travel section usually stirs my inner wanderlust ( exploring the outskirts of Paris); the arts section just makes me want to live in NY and go to every exhibit and new Broadway show that’s coming (serious FOMO…not to mention the FOMO with these three);

…but what I really devour, and learn so much from, are the Sunday Styles and Sunday Review sections, which include interesting op-ed pieces. I don’t know whether I was just more receptive to the content this past weekend or whether the articles were a perfect mix of things that interest me, but, wow, I gleaned more than I usually do from these two sections for some reason.

I learned that CBD is everywhere and that I want to get this disposable pen. I learned that lots of women who decide to stop coloring their hair & go gray now have a “silver crown” that they’re proud of (I love my red-hair too much to cut the color/stylist cord). This article affirmed that writing in a journal during times of crisis, and also less stressful times, can help so much.  “…journaling about traumatic or disturbing experiences specifically has the most measurable effect on our overall well-being.”…Dr. James Pennebaker. I’d never written a journal until I was 51 and I continue to do it at least once a month to keep myself in check and cultivate the gratitude that I revere. What an easy way to find meaning and see progress in your everyday life.

…who knew that there was so much to know about candy around the world?

…and finally, I learned, among other things,  from this article, that the structure and purpose of my job in the attendance office of a high school might be fundamentally wrong in order for our students to reach their full potential…but, I also know that, for the time being, I have job security because the current model is unfortunately not changing anytime soon.

here’s an interesting article that my friend, Gina, sent to me…maybe you’re a super-feeler??

Never stop learning!


You cannot direct the wind, but you can adjust the sails!

Motivational Monday…8 days!

“Those who stay away from the election think that one vote will do no good. ‘Tis but one step more to think one vote will do no harm”…Ralph Waldo Emerson

8 days until you make a difference with your vote, at a time when we really need it!

You cannot direct the wind, but you can adjust the sails!

A few more NYC things to try….

Yup, there’s always something new to discover when you go to NYC/Brooklyn. Here are a few more fun things that I did this past trip while visiting Austin, Kate and 9 mth old Jude.

  • Take a ride on a Vespa across the Brooklyn Bridge


  • The Museum of Pizza at the William Vale in Brooklyn thru Nov 18th…I’d recommend..FUN! …and leave some time to go to the rooftop bar with an amazing view of Manhattan!


  • The Color Factory…Kate said I should go & thought I’d love it…she was right! I think it would be even more fun if you go with someone/group. So colorful & interesting participatory experience…With some treats along the way!
Balloon wishes from children

  • #pizzamondaybk
  •  Yummy Misi restaurant…Williamsburg/Brooklyn (sister restaurant to Lilia) Everything is family style, which I love!
spinach & mascarpone filled tortelli in brown butter sauce
grilled runner beans
chanterelles with olive oil, rosemary, garlic & lemon (with Negroni cocktail)
steak was one of the evening specials…so good!

…..and a couple more pics of adorable Jude!

future gymnast

….and a pretty Brooklyn door…

….and you much watch this video
you’re welcome!!

Have a great weekend!!

You cannot direct the wind, but you can adjust the sails!