Tuesday, February 26, 2013

cookbook club, croissants and catching up. sometime after dinner on sunday night, I finally settled into the weekend. often I'll relax due to sheer exhusation and that's probably what happened this weekend. truth is, I've been avoiding something, something important and big.

a few weekends ago I found out that someone in my family is very unwell and deteriorating at a rate we hadn't let ourselves anticipate. it froze me for awhile as I thought of all of the things that could happen in the coming months only to come to the conclusion that I might never be ready for what might eventuate. I'm kind of okay with that now. in the weeks after the news, my family mainly communicated with each other over email. in that time I thought hard about whether I could live, long-term, far from my family. we're close and being away when good and bad things happen just doesn't feel right. and more than that, I have so much fun with I'm with my family.

on sunday night I picked up the phone and spent most of the night speaking to everyone in my immediate family. embarrassingly it was something I'd been putting off, something I had let myself be afraid of. I didn't know how we'd handle talking about what was happening, whether anyone wanted to talk about it or whether anyone would know what to say.

what changed my mind was something I'd heard in a podcast. I had recently listened to an interview with a woman who works to help people with suicide bereavement. she said something that really affected friends and family who had lost someone was that people tended to avoid them, even going to the extent to cross the road to avoid passing by and all because they didn't know what to say. the last thing I wanted to do was avoid or ignore the people I love at a time like this so I gingerly made the first call and spent the rest of the night dialing my siblings, having quiet moments but laughing too.

there are other things that happened over the weekend, mainly food things. on saturday night we headed over to have dinner with some friends in our very first cookbook club event. last year we dreamed up a book club where you didn't have to read a novel and discuss it. instead we'd take turns picking a cookbook and then allocate a course to a different couple.

this month the book was moro east.  we were on starters so tony made a delicious labneh with anchovies, chilli, mint and cucumbers and I made some flatbread to go with it. it was so good! there were more elaborate dishes to come including a very fancy dessert, which was a kind of pomegranate ice with rosewater and honey, served with a dollop of double cream and a lemon cookie. maybe the best thing about the night was it was pretty stress free for everyone, you just make a small portion of the meal and everyone pitches in. it was a truly communal effort.

on sunday morning we had friends over for breakfast, tony has been very excitedly making his own croissants lately and gave chocolate croissants a go. we now have a healthy stockpile of pastries in the freezer, ready for next weekend.

and finally, a rare moment of neatness and quiet.

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