Wandering at the Shadows' Edge

exploring potential and possibility

Archive for the month “October, 2019”


I like to cook – but I have trouble cooking for just myself. And I really like most vegetables, fruits, and grains. But I like meat, poultry, and seafood too. And getting enough calories from just vegetables and fruit is hard. The volume of food you have to eat is daunting, to say the least. It takes me forever to get through that much food!

I tend to eat too few calories and put my metabolism into starvation mode. Then it fights to hang on to everything and I end up gaining weight. So I need to eat more calories along with exercising and drinking lots of water. I’m working on all three.

I downloaded an app on my phone that should help. It lets me cut down recipes for one or two servings and create a grocery list from the recipes I want to use. We’ll see if I can remember to use it and if it actually makes things easier.

I’m leery, because the experience of the past tells me it will be less effective than I’d like. It may be a wonderful app. It was recommended. But I have a tendency to forget to use such things. They’re only effective if they’re being used and I’m already tracking my eating in two places. Adding another app I need to check on a regular basis may not be the best option. But we’ll see. I’ll give it some time and see if I can get in the habit of using it.

It’s pre-mapping something I’m almost familiar with, yet have never been successful at. I have hops, but no specific expectations. In this case, the destination is the point, but the journey matters too.

Physical Shadows

One thing about roaming the shadows and not keeping track of where I’m going – I don’t keep track of other things, like my weight. And when I finally did step back into the light, I found I’d gained a fair amount of weight.

I was very unhappy with that discovery. And I decided to do something about it.

I joined 24 Hour Fitness and set up sessions with a trainer once a week. I started walking again and doing the lateral elliptical machine at the gym when it’s too hot or rainy to walk the hike and bike train behind my condo.

And I started eating better. Lots of fruits, vegetables, and such. Eggs and some cheese. I haven’t gone vegetarian. I eat some meat, poultry, and seafood. And I haven’t given up my beer. That’s not happening!

I tried Daily Harvest. I like the idea of having smoothie ingredients ready for immediate use. And they have dinner bowls, overnight oats, and snack bites. But I wasn’t fond of a lot of the flavors. Some of them were good, and I’m still ordering a limited number of them. I think I’ll be prepping ingredients myself and buying frozen fruits. That should make it quicker to fix smoothies and I can probably pre-mix the ingredients once I find the combinations I like best.

I’m just starting to lose some of the weight, but it is happening. I’m hopeful. We’ll see what happens.

Shadows of an Artist

I have never referred to myself – or even thought of myself – as an artist. I do a lot of crafty and creative things. But I have little discipline in most of them. So I’m not an artist.

Or am I?

An artist is someone who creates art. And what is art? Dictionary.com defines art as “the quality, production, expression, or realm, according to aesthetic principles, of what is beautiful, appealing, or of more than ordinary significance.”¬†

But it also tells us the origins of the word “art” comes from Middle English and Old French “ars” or “artem” and means “skill, craft, craftmanship.”

So do I create art?

I do have have some skill at the things I do. I try to put some definable sense of craftsmanship into them. Others find them aesthetically pleasing.

I think it can be called art. Not high art. Not even high quality art. Maybe everyday art.

And isn’t that something lovely to consider – that everyday art exists. That art doesn’t have to be confined to the museum, gallery, or concert hall. That art can be a part of lives. part of our everyday experience. That art is for everyone, everyday.

Everyday art is, to me, something created, not because it was needed or contracted, but just because the creator desired to bring something it to being just to be enjoyed, to make those who see it feel something.

So many of my projects – by that definition are art. And because I create them, I must by definition, be an artist. An everyday or common artist, but still an artist.

That thought is almost overwhelming sometimes. But it’s inspiring too. I think it’s time to go create some art.

New-Old Journeying

I’m still visiting old shadows and paths, but some of them are taking me in new directions. The two that are taking me the furthest from familiar paths are essentially new versions of things I’ve tried before. I’m only going to talk about one of them here.

I had a podcast for a little while over a decade ago. It was about creativity and I enjoyed it. Buth other things took priority and even though it was something I wanted to do, I just couldn’t find that one topic I could center a new podcast on. So I let it sit in the back of my mind in the mists and shadows until something came that I felt I could talk about for an extended time.

It took a financial podcast for inspiration to hit. “How to Money” is a podcast about all things money, hosted by two young men who share one of my loves – good beer. They have a beer while recording their podcast, talking about it at the beginning and end of each episode. And I can talk about beer forever.

So there it was – topic #1. But there are lots of beer podcasts out there. So what could I talk about that would make my podcast unique? What do I spend my time and energy on just for me? It really should have been obvious. I read, and I write. I love books of all kinds. Could I combine my love of beer with my love of books?

The answer was yes – and Books and Beer 2 Go is the result.

I got the intro and first episode out. Then I ran into computer problems. Then I ran into time problems. But the podcast is getting back on track – I think.

So, if you like books, or beer, or just want to hear me babble, go to your favorite podcast app and download an episode. And don’t forget to let me know what you think.

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