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It takes multiple experiences of failures, stumbling over one’s own feet, harsh face plants, terrifying moments, feeling lost, losing people in your life to  understand the idea of appreciation for the joyous times, your stronger moments, love, happiness… to realize you took it all for granted when you did get it, have it, possess it, were loved… the list goes on. Why does it take these kinds of incidents for us to finally see the bigger picture? Or sometimes, unfortunately, for us to continue on being blinded and not learn from our mistakes? Why is that? Is it really our natural instincts that push us forward in life with burdens of regret or the continuation of stupidity because we weren’t brave enough to accept it the first time? It seems to me it is this inevitable, terrible cycle that makes little sense because we simply say, “I didn’t get it the first time, okay?” and then it’s back to not getting it again and again. If in everything we did, we could use one statement to brush it off, clean it up, explain it, we wouldn’t have much of a life. Life would simply just lose its meaning in general – you could pretty much live vicariously through reading books and movies.

I don’t want to live knowing that I keep messing up and that I still haven’t grasped some sort of growth. Strangely enough cooking has shown me that. This experience and progression of each meal, each new dessert, recording my thoughts, expressing my successes and failures to some unknown audience has taught me something bigger than just not substituting one item for the other. It’s taught me that we’re given chances, opportunities, perfect “times,” to do things, and sometimes, we mess up, we miss these gifts, and either we can lose it all together and stay on the ground feeling sorry for ourselves, or we can pick ourselves up and realize there’s a lesson to be learned and move on. Life is like a cooking – you’re given suggested directions, ingredients (i.e. the norm, right versus wrong, etc.) and what you do with these is what changes the outcome. Sometimes you get it on the first try, sometimes it takes ten times – either way, you have to learn to appreciate it when you get it, when you don’t, when you fall, and when you get up again.

Appreciation.

For life, for love, for failure, for success, for everything.

Life’s lessons are all cliches – but they’re only cliches cause everyone knows them but no one really gets them.

Today someone reminded me of the understanding of “perspective” and “point of view,” and somehow it got me thinking about how cooking and baking also have both a perspective and point of view. There is the creator of the food and then the consumer. Before I began experimenting in the kitchen as of late, I never really thought about how the cook or chef or even my mother (who usually cooks for me) felt about the food they brought to the table. My simple mind always just said, “Hey, as long as it’s edible, it’s all good.” Naive? Most definitely. There’s so much more that goes into the dishes that my mouth so greedily devours – the love, passion, joy, effort, energy, time, sweat, and most of all, the concern for the people who will be eating your creations. It’s like the artiste and his masterpiece and the composer and his song. It’s really that incredible. Unfortunately, sometimes “perspective” is overlooked, and their very being that went to the food is forgotten.

and now, MOST IMPORTANTLY

What I have been baking/cooking:

From top to bottom, left to right: Double-layered, honey-cinnamon frosting and hazelnut cinnamon chocolate cake (finished product); Baked cheese, bacon, mushroom, and asparagus dish (before); Baked cheese, bacon, mushroom, and asparagus dish (after); Bacon wrapped asparagus (front); Cheese covered mushrooms (back); Apple pie with weaved cover (finished product); and fruit tart with a simple clear glaze and melt chocolate layer in the middle (finished product)

For recipes – I will be back 🙂

Everything is homemade – crust, frosting, and all, so get excited to be able to do it yourself too! If I can do it, you can too!

Good night lovelies!

Come back for more soon!

XOXO,
Ainsley

Comfort, oh quiet soul, comfort,
Seek comfort in the troubled music
Of weeping in the halls;
Remember, not the words
But that face,
That gentleness
And that compassion
This world must not understand.
Remember, not the words
But that smile,
After morning walks
And treading energetically
Up the cold aged stairs.
Remember, not the words
But those simple moments
Of dancing to television sounds
And creating ridiculousness.
Remember, not the words
But that voice,
That echoed in its hearty laughter,
That spoke sternly in tender lessons,
That would only love and love again.
Remember,
His words – his final words of happiness –
Because that is what he is, was,
And always will be –
Even when it’s all been stored away
In a box behind cold walls.
Remember him
Because that’s the best memory
And that’s where he will always be.

July 26, 2009

Written by Ainsley

Those sweet, simple moments before the “I-dos”
Those tears of disbelief that the perfect one is yours
Those joyous smiles…
To be in love.

Congratulations Ivy and Jerry 🙂