(Cross-posted from my food blog, btw...)
Don't the flowers look nice? They're actually edible. I think all foodie-girls should get a bouquet of squash blossoms on their birthdays. :) It's a most appropriate gift: you can appreciate their beauty at once, then batter 'em up and deep-fry them. That way, you get to enjoy your flowers twice.
I have to admit that the past twelve months of my life have been the most unusual I've had so far. As far as my culinary inclinations are concerned, they have been quite exciting: I discovered the pleasures of single-origin chocolate and nama at Heavenly Chocolates. I spent a blissful morning at the Salcedo Market. I made my first-ever batch of chocolate truffles, started a small business selling cookies and cupcakes, tried new recipes out of cookbooks, created new recipes out of either curiosity or a panicked need to substitute ingredients at the last minute.
I've made a lot of new friends this year, both online via the food blogs I read and in the real world. Most recently, I had the opportunity to attend a pua tiong tiu (Mid-Autumn [Mooncake] Festival party) and met my friend Michi's other friends, thus widening my own circle.
However, it hasn't been all fun and games. Last May, a doctor finally gave a name to the weird cycle of melancholia and high productivity I've been suffering from since those dark days in school: bipolar disorder, specifically the hypomanic cycle of bipolar II. It hasn't been easy for me because I have friends who agree with Tom Cruise that psychiatry is a load of bull and insist that I just crave attention. I am, however, grateful for everyone who has been giving me spiritual and emotional support. Being the odd one out is never an easy thing, and it's so easy for me to sink into the doldrums whenever things go horribly wrong.
On the bright side, however, I've finally posted my first e-book online via Yudu; it's a selection of poems written from 2004 to 2008 called Songs for My Wandering Muse. Not too shabby an effort, I hope! ;) I am wrapping up alpha-edits on another manuscript and will be sending it along to everyone who volunteered to beta-read in a few days.
Despite numerous annoyances, several deaths that have caused me no end of grief, I am still grateful for:
- My amazing family for never losing faith in me even when I'd already lost a great deal of faith in myself;
- My fellow food bloggers for being sweet enough to read my blog and inspiring me to pursue more exciting gustatory pleasures;
- The friends who stood by me when everything seemed to fall apart back in May. That was the time I discovered who my real friends were. You know who you are, you lot; you're all fantastic! and;
- There's Wayne, the Mr. W of posts past, who still probably doesn't have a clue as to how I feel but has managed to do something that others in the past failed to do: inspire me to write. Speaking as a writer, that's the most amazing thing anyone has done for me.
God has blessed me with so many things. While my life isn't perfect, it's comfortable enough and, in a way, I'm happy.
In the meantime...
...anyone want a some of my new Vanilla Treacle Coffeecake? ;)