Daily Affirmation

The best things in life are free.
The second best are very expensive.
- Coco Chanel

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Rainy Days & Soup and Scones

This week I've gotten back into cooking.  The last few weeks have been spent recovering from the holidays, celebrating our anniversary, and simply winding down from all of the excitement.  I still have a trip or two up my sleeve, but for at least the next week and a half, I can get down to business and start cooking healthy meals again.
I haven't been doing great harm - it's just that we've either been out of town, or we've plain old eaten out too much.  It seems that once you start doing that, it's a hard habit to break.  Every night becomes another night where you just don't feel like cooking.  Or I'd not get my grocery list done.  Or... well, you see what happens at our house.
Yesterday was cold and rainy.  All day long the rain came down.  Sometimes it was a good downpour, like in the morning when I went out to my yoga class, and at other time it was more of a gentle but steady mist. We don't see a lot of rainy days here in Southern California, and I love them, as long as I don't have to drive around too much.  And I didn't have to go anywhere but yoga yesterday, so it was warm and cozy in the house while I sat at the window working and looking out at the rain coming down and splashing in the street.  After awhile, when the rain let up a bit, I took the camera outside and took a few practice shots with my 50 mm lens.
The raindrops clinging to fresh green ficus leaves

My last juicy sweet orange on the tree, washed clean from the rain

Raindrops on patio furniture

I love a rainy day

Well, the crisp, damp outdoors led to thoughts of baking, so around 3:30 I went downstairs and mixed up some Lemon Blueberry Scones.  I patted the dough into a circle and divided it into 12 triangles.  Before baking I brushed each triangle with heavy cream and sprinkled it with sanding sugar for sparkle and crunch.  Honestly - I fully intended to have a couple of them ourselves, and then send the rest with L to work.  He wasn't having it, and they're still sitting down on the counter, waiting for him to get home and snack on them.  And I have to admit, I did have another one with my eggs this morning.  *sigh* I love to bake.  There's something so satisfying about mixing up dough, throwing in some hand grated lemon zest and fresh lemon juice, and a container of fresh blueberries, and baking the whole thing up.  It makes me feel capable and safe, and gives me the illusion of a life rich in abundance. Even if the abundance is in the form of scones bursting with blueberries and lemon flavor.
What they lack in beauty was made up in their Blueberry Lemon flavor...

Tonight, the abundance took on the form of homemade Roasted Tomato Basil Soup.  It's still on the stove simmering away, waiting for L to get home.  We'll have them with smoked mozzarrella paninis.  I got the idea on this blog, and I couldn't get it out of my head.  It took almost no time at all to do, and it's filled the house with this incredibly rich aroma of oven roasted tomatoes, onions and fresh basil.
I guess my point is how much beauty and enjoyment good cooking can add to a hard day.  I can have the hardest day ever, and as soon as my work laptop turns off, or I take a break to go to the kitchen and get started with the dinner prep, I can feel tension leaving.  And as the sights and smells starting layering into another delicious meal, I can't help but feel that I'm living the good life.


  1. You ARE living the good life. With the good food!!!


  2. There are few things more satisfying in life than a cold, rainy day and fresh tomato basil soup. :) So warm and cozy in the soul and tummy.

  3. You do have a life rich in abundance! You are such a talented photographer. I love looking at your pictures. Your kitchen must smell heavenly all the time!

  4. Beautiful photos! We are in a rut here with no cooking. Just last night my husband and I were talking about it. Time for us to get back into cooking healthy food.

  5. All: Those scones are so good, but I really was hoping that LaMar would take them to work as they're very carb heavy and hard for me to resist eating more than 1 a day. Doing my best though, and I notice that LaMar has reduced the number of them noticeably. He can do that as he hops on his bike every night and pedals out into the lone and dreary (freezing) world every night. I am too much of a wimp for that, so until the sun stays up later and/or it's warmer in the evening, it's just daytime yoga for me!

  6. Tonight is soup night at our house too. It's raining and yukky so I'm making Chicken with Rice Soup. Cozy.

  7. Wednesdays are always soup and sandwhich nite around here, but my creation will not be as yummy sounding as yours! The scones looks very tempting, especially since I'm trying to keep away from carbs too. Now I'm hungry! I love your pics. It must be cool to have oranges growing in your yard. The gray sky shot looks like Ohio every day in Winter!

  8. Lovely photos. I too love rainy days. I often sit on our screen porch and write while it rains. Soothing on so many levels.

  9. Love these shots! Glad you like your lens :)

  10. Don't you just love to bake? I know that I can be feeling down and when I start to bake, I suddenly come alive. I too am trying to lose that holiday weight I put on in November and December, so I just won't let myself bake until I lose three more pounds. Those scones look devine and I would be afraid to have them around right now.

    Unlike you, I hate it when it rains. I get downright depressed and nothing but the sun will help. As soon as it comes out, I am all better. We do need it so that I try to just keep reminding myself of that. We got a little rain, but mostly it was just cloudy and overcast, which is almost as bad for my mood as rain. I am one of those people who could never live in a place like Seattle. I would have to go under those lights in order to survive it.

    Good for you with the yoga though. I should look into that.


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