Hey doll hey!! How’s your day/night going? Great I hope. So I’ve told you that I disappeared for a few months whilst I was battling a really deep episode with my depression. I took time off from makeup, there were days I just couldn’t even get myself in the shower… all I would do is lay in bed all day and night and stare at the wall or ceiling. I would try to watch tv but really I was zoned out.
It was a particularly dark depressive time for me and naturally because my mind was not in focus this lead to my body falling apart and so my pain levels were higher and fatigue as well….
So how did I pull myself out of it?
I started by cranking up the tunes and rearranging all of my furniture in the house… with the help of hubby of course since being a spoonie and moving around heavy bulky furniture are not conducive to good Fibro and RA says. This let me to reorganize my living space… I reorganized my makeup room… making it my streamlined and giving it more of a cohesive look, I ordered new dining chairs (which I put together myself … go me!!!) and redecorated the dining space, I reorganized my dressers and walk in closet … discarding clothes that were past their time and moving things that still had tags on them to the front of the closet so that I would be compelled to chose from them first and lastly I reorganized the kitchen… giving us a coffee station, a baking station, and a food prep station … that last part ignited my happy place …. I love to cook and bake and it makes me feel great when I present my family with a wonderful cooked from scratch meal.
By far my favorite remodel was the little baking station I made myself … all of my baking pans and such are in the cupboards on the bottom and all of my baking machines (such as my stand mixer) are in the cupboards above.
So I did tons of baking and home cooked meals. This helped me at least get mobile again… it forced me to shower and keep good hygiene because I find that I can’t cook or bake without first showering.
I did much more baking… all kinds of breads and goodies… sadly I didn’t document all of the wonderful goodies I made…
here are just some of the dishes I made that helped me slink out of my dark time….
None of this is any sort of time order …. I just kept a folder on my laptop of foods and goodies and forgot to put them in any order but without further ado …. let’s see what I whipped up to help push me out of the dark …..
I learned to make homemade puff pastry and so I used it to make our favorite coffee snack… Pastel de Guava. Making puff pastry from scratch is such a labor of love … It takes 2 days to make it and tons of elbow grease but the flavor is out of this world! I will NEVER go back to store bought puff pastry.
I learned how to make pretzel rolls (which are fabulous with a little honey mustard and grilled chicken with spring greens for a light lunch) and even though they look wonky I also learned to make Kaiser rolls. I’ve since purchased a Kaiser roll stamp so they come out so much better but they are super tasty.
Grogu and I learned how to make the worlds BEST fudge brownies, amazing peppermint hot cocoa, and a yummy broccoli salad.
Florida had a nasty little cold snap so for lunch I made Sopa de Salchicon (Puerto Rican comfort food at it’s best), chicken corn chowder and chicken and dumplings. My favorite was the chicken corn chowder I just love it so much that I made extra to freeze for later.
I got the hankering for the Swedish meatballs from Ikea and so I found a copycat recipe and this came out so yummy. I also really love the Lindon Berry jam I purchased it was the only thing I couldn’t make from scratch because my canning skills are abysmal.
I learned how to make pasta from scratch without a pasta rolling machine but I didn’t have the energy to actually make the pasta this time so I used box shells and store bought mozzarella (I have been trying to make my own cheeses but it keeps coming out wrong) I made the pasta sauce and the filling from scratch for these stuff shells and man was this scrumptious!
I have tried all my life to learn how to make rellenos de papa (beef and cheese filled potato balls) from scratch and I have failed miserably until I made it this time! They are crunchy on the outside and creamy and savory on the inside…
Homemade Gnocchi in brown butter sage sauce for a rustic Saturday supper.
Sunday brunch one day consisted of bacon, cheddar and sour cream buttermilk biscuits, a charcuterie board and whipped cream vodka and orange juice mimosas (I hate champagne so I make my mimosas with whipped cream vodka instead.
I learned how to make homemade bagels but quickly learned that less is more when it comes to toppings … I use way too many sesame and poppy seeds to top this batch. Grogu and I also learned how to make homemade cream cheese which was so much better than the store bought that I now make 3 batches a month …. we eat a ton of bagels now that I’ve learned how to make them at home.
I wanted some comfort food so I made homemade cottage pie and yeast rolls for supper one night …. since there are only 3 of us at home this meal actually fed us 3 nights (I just simply froze the left overs in 2 separate freezer bags and popped them out of the ice box when I wanted a quick fix meal).
Monday mornings are quick breakfast days for me so I made homemade caramel pecan cinnamon rolls with coffee.
Sunday night is typical slow meal day for me … on this Sunday I made homemade Yankee Pot Roast with homemade Angle biscuits. This made a great next day lunch for us as well.
Homemade Mediterranean chicken in roasted sweet red pepper and parmesan sauce and homemade garlic knots.
In the Puerto Rican household we celebrate the day before Christmas … we call it Nochebuena and this is typically our Christmas feast day …. I was in a world of pain on Christmas Eve so I ended up making Christmas day dinner. Normally I would make a Spanish pork roast and a Turkey… but since we just had Turkey for Thanksgiving and my mom requested Spanish pork roast for her birthday (which is the day after Christmas) I settled on a homemade honey baked pineapple ham, herb crusted chicken, corn soufflé, sweet potato soufflé, broccoli parmesan, old fashion apple pie, homemade crescent rolls, and peach cobbler.
Thanksgiving was super yummy. I made Thanksgiving Potato Rolls, Yam Soufflé, Corn Soufflé, Puerto Rican Chorizo Stuffing, Asparagus/Bacon bake, Green Bean Almandine, French styled mash potatoes, rice and beans, pasteles, Turkey breast in sage, rosemary, thyme and white wine, smokehouse turkey legs, homemade pecan and pumpkin pie and homemade caramel whipped cream.
Friday suppers are typically either take away days or when I have the energy I make take away style food from scratch … I’ve made homemade Chinese take way, Burger shop take away and on this Friday I made homemade pizza take away from scratch (including the dough and sauce) and I made some chocolate dipped strawberries for dessert …. I broke my double boiler that day so I need to repurchase one soon.
This is another Friday homemade take away dinner. I made homemade raspberry jam filled donuts (jam was not made by me… again …. I am horrible at canning). I made homemade meatball parmesan complete with homemade sub rolls and sauce for out Italian take away meal.
This was a yummy midweek lunch… Fried Green Tomatoes and homemade Boston Cream donuts.
I even tried making Turkish Delight … lemon flavored. They came out ok… but on day 2 they were slimy so we enjoyed them day 1 and ended up throwing them away day 2. I want to try to make them again but I need to do some more research before I attempt it since I hate food waste.
I also learned how to do pattern transfers and taught myself how to sew on my sewing machine for clothes… up until now I’ve only ever made purses and masks and decorative pillows … I have since made 3 pairs of pants (2 are cargo pants which taught me how to do gusset pockets and how to do button holes and 1 was a super cute pair of cigarette pants which taught me how to do waste bands and deep set pockets.
And finally for supper tonight I made Bakes whole chicken in Italian seasonings and roasted whole baby potatoes in sweet chili sauce.
I have had a world of fun creating menus for the week and putting together shopping lists and baking and it’s just really helped me concentrate on something other than the darkness and ptsd that I go through and has really helped me turn my mind around. It helped so much that I really wanted to start playing with makeup again but I had the flu and didn’t want to cross contaminate my makeup and then I had a sinus infection and then at last when I was all better I ended up getting a bad fever and woke up to a huge cold sore that took a few weeks to heal, but the up side is that the cold sore healed in time for me to do my makeup for my 19th anniversary (on January 20th) and now I have all of my new makeup put away and ready to use.
It’s funny how depression and ptsd can cause you to feel like you’re drowing one minute and something happens and instantly you are feeling better. This isn’t always the case for me… there have been times when it’s taken hard work to pull myself out of the dark but then there are some times when something as simple as the scent of freshly baked bread can help turn your mood around.
Well that’s all for this post dolls. I hope you enjoy the rest of your day/night and that you are in great spirits and health.