Monday, September 12, 2011

Lazily Dealing with Loss

I didn't expect 9/11 to hit me so hard.  It feels like NPR and the news shows were running stories for weeks.  Trickling tears leading up to the floodgates. 

9/11 was also the six month mark since my break-up, a kind of marker that I had been looking forward to so that I could take my dating temperature.  Synchronistically I had one of my first dates the day before, almost like God said "See, you're doin' good!"  I am doing better than good, I think, fully healing mind, body and spirit after a tough relationship ending.  I feel more whole and ready for a whole and healthy man. 

Yet, this little anniversary marker of a loss, an ending was also poignant and touched my heart.  It's never so easy as just one loss.  One loss drips into your heart and touches off the river of another loss that runs even deeper, and so on, and so on. 

I have many people around me dealing with loss right now, and their losses are touching off my own.  I wrote about a couple of losses that are perhaps once removed from my life, but still touched many people deeply.  Here are the links to The Morton Report stories of two extraordinary men, one bravely battling brain cancer, the other recently taken shockingly without notice:

These two men are bright shining stars...forever.  The thousands we lost on 9/11, more shining stars forever. 

A friend posted this on Facebook yesterday in honor of 9/11 and I think it is worth reposting here:

"There are stars whose light only reaches the earth long after they have fallen apart. There are people whose remembrance gives light in this world, long after they have passed away. This light shines in our darkest nights on the road we must follow." - The Talmud

Saturday, September 03, 2011

Lazy Summer Ice Cream Recipe

Usually when I make ice cream I do it the old fashioned way, making a custard base on the stove, etc.  But, I found a most miraculous recipe that really tastes almost exactly like ice creams that you slave over with very little effort at all. 

And, guess, what, when I did my one stop shopping at Trader Joe's, I found that the strawberries were not up to snuff for making ice cream the same day (yesterday), so I mozied over to the frozen fruit section and got a bag of frozen strawberries because I knew those would be very ripe, and heck they were going to be frozen in the end again anyway, right? 

Here's the recipe:  I made this very easy recipe even lazier -- use frozen strawberries.  I just used a pastry cutter to chop them all up in a bowl, instead of cleaning, hulling and chopping fresh ones! 

The other two variations I made were at the end of the freezing process I added probablhy 1/4 cup of Cointreau....and the piece de resistance....I took a normal grater, i.e., large holes, like if you were grating a big hunk of cheddar cheese, and grated a 3 oz. bar of deep dark chocolate.  I added the shavings of the entire bar into the ice cream for the last couple of minutes in the ice cream maker.

If you grew up in Southern California you may remember Thrifty's Ice Cream.  They actually still make it and you can buy it at most Rite Aid stores.  Rite Aid took over the Thrifty's chain, but the ice cream is made in same factories apparently with all the same recipes.  They make my favorite mint chip ice crea because the chocolate chips are more like thin shavings and they are very dark chocolate. 

I was inspired to mimic those shavings, so that every bite of the creamy strawberry ice cream had a dark chocolate edge to it.  My guests say I succeeded!