Friday, March 11, 2011

Oranges and Sunshine

I had a lovely dessert last night, courtesy of Dr. Daphne Miller's book, The Jungle Effect.

Peel an orange (using a knife or your fingers) and cut crosswise into rounds. Arrange these prettily on a plate. Drizzle with honey (maybe 1 teaspoon) and sprinkle with cinnamon. Chill, if desired. I added a sprinkle of unsweetened flaked coconut, which was another layer of delicious. I also used one orange and one tangerine, and alternated the fruits on the plate. A blood orange would be a wonderful striking contrast. Really, use any variations on oranges you like. Sweet, spicy, and refreshing!

I've been thinking a bit about many of the women amongst my circle of friends. Some are on their way to being happily married, some are on their way to being mothers (for the first or second time.) I don't want to be married or pregnant, but at the same time I feel as though I'm missing something special, and their lives are so much better than mine. They're living the perfect feminine dream.

Then I think about how utterly awesome my life is. For example, after work yesterday I got to enjoy a vigorous hike in the nearby county park--spotting not one, but two hawks, and a rabbit, plus a deer. Then I got to share a delicious and tasty meal--dinner, wine, and dessert--with the dear, supportive man in my life. Tonight I'm headed down to Los Angeles to enjoy a weekend with friends I haven't seen in months. Keeping my hands warm are little wristers that I knit myself, using yarn left over from a pair of socks I knitted years ago for my mum. Despite one or two little projects (I'm working on them), I'm enjoying very good health.

A very wise woman (who is one of the friends I will get to see tomorrow) once told me that you can't judge other people's lives according to your own impression of them. One man may be in a marriage that seems perfectly happy, yet he's sometimes afraid that his strong, independent wife doesn't approve of his alternative career choice. One woman may appear to have her entire life perfectly ordered: neat job, great apartment, international travel, yet she's afraid of the fact that she doesn't own a house and doesn't have a nest egg for retirement.

And, of course, the glowing, shining pregnant ladies will have to deal with poop and spit-up while I get to kick back after a long day's hiking and have a handsome man bring me custom cocktails and rub my feet. Yep; it's great to be me.


  1. LOL I definitely miss hiking Mel! Though I will admit, I am totally happy with the trade off. My life is better than I ever could have imagined it would be. I highly recommend mama-hood, but there's also no requirement that says you have to be a mother to be a "real" woman. Different choices, different lives. Just different, neither better than the other.

    And thanks for sharing your fab dessert idea. I have 25 pounds of oranges sitting here staring at me, and though we have no trouble eating them plain, I'm going to make this dessert up tonight for my boys as a special treat.

  2. Hi Sandra! I'm glad that you're doing so well as a mother yourself, and you've got a lovely family. I look forward to watching them all grow.

    I'm really excited about finding more simple fruit dessert recipes. There's something satisfying and luxurious about turning beautiful fruit into a cleverly-arranged, yet simple, work of culinary art.