Books ‘n Baking #1

inthekitchen320This is an idea I’ve been pondering for a while. It’s not about writing a book or changing the world. It’s about having fun, doing something I love (aside from writing), connecting with readers, bloggers, other authors who might enjoy it too.

I’m going to start a baking group called Books ‘n Baking. Sort of a take on Julie and Julia and sort of a take on an idea that a food blogger I follow is doing, but with my own spin. (No, we’re not going to bake our way through a Julia Child tome, I promise.)

The premise is, we take a cookbook (a general baking one) and bake our way through it for a year. One recipe a month. And then, we blog about it. The why, the what, etc… (more…)

Thursday’s with TED Talks

Have y’all ever been on the TED website? Ever watched any of their videos? They’re called TED Talks and I love them. I find them informative, inspirational, and educational. I see different points of view on all sorts of subjects. I like that. A 20 minute video while I’m on the treadmill and I’m good…and I’m often left thinking, my brain moving.

So, I thought I’d post some of my favorites on Thursdays.

This one is Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of Eat, Pray, Love. It’s about muses and genius and since I blogged about my Last Minute Muse yesterday, I thought it was worth watching again, and this time, sharing.

Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.

~lissa

A Little Maintenance

I have a lot of coffee stuff. A lot of coffee beans. Filters. A grinder. A couple French presses. A drip coffee machine. An espresso machine. A Keurig, and a travel K-cup machine that I take to conferences with me. I have scoops and a frother and syrups for lattes and miscellaneous other accouterments. There’s a basket which holds a lot of the stuff and I don’t even want to go into how many coffee mugs I have.

The point is, I’ve accumulated a lot of coffee paraphernalia. It’s something I love: Coffee. And I’ve spent this morning cleaning out, throwing out, organizing everything to make it all work a little better. I’ve soaked parts, re-washed a lot of pieces… Removing oils so there’s no rancidity and giving everything a fresh start. It is a new year, and all.

I’ve been doing a lot of this the last week or so. I’ve played in my home office, cleaning it out, organizing, trying to make it feel a little more conducive to writing and working rather than the catch all from the last few months.

All of this is maintenance for the brain and the spirit, too… This cleaning out of the cobwebs. This rearranging of spaces and places. I love fall. The changing of the leaves, school supplies, the weather cooling down, football season. But I love winter, too. Especially starting the day after Christmas. By New Year’s night the tree is down, the holiday stuff is in the garage and back in closets, and I’m ready to declutter and clean out and start over. Spring cleaning takes me 3-4 months. LOL… I have to start early!

But, something in this whole process, not only clears out my office and my house and my coffee basket, but it also cleans out my mind. It gives me somewhere fresh to start and gives me a great boost for wanting to write. It wasn’t that long ago that I went through a period of time where I didn’t want to write and wasn’t sure I would ever write again. That was only 3 years ago. so, time and movement helps, cleaning out, finding projects to get the creative gears churning. The trick though, it making it last through the year, through the dog days of summer when everything is heavy and laden with heat and humidity (ice coffee really helps, though).

For now though, I’m relishing this bit of maintenance, this bit of energy, this bit of spark… It makes the coffee taste better too. This is how I tend to celebrate and welcome the new year. Well, this and the last of the college football season 🙂

When do you start Spring Cleaning?

~lissa