I don’t make New Year’s resolutions, at least not in the usual sense. Unless you count my annual attempt at eating nothing but soup for the first month of the year and a penchant for excessive simmering over all the weighty topics about which one typically makes resolutions.
The soup experiments date as far back as at least 2005, when, according to Primary Source documents—namely the bound print journals I used to keep before I took to posting my thoughts in cyberspace—I was going to “explore” and “experiment” with various soups during the entirety of January and then invite friends over to sample the best recipes at a mid February affair that never happened. The documents show that I entered 2006 with even greater resolve, declaring that “the time was right,” and that I went so far as to spend a morning making stock, although evidence suggests that I spent as least as much time writing about and sketching stock as I did making it.
According to 2006 Me, stock plays a foundational role. It offers a depth of flavor, a basis, upon which all else rests, although it is comprised of some pretty odd components: knobby, gnarled bits like ginger root, pale, pointed chunks of something called parsnip, and items I wasn’t even sure I got right. (Are green onions and leeks the same thing?) There’s even stuff I was pretty sure I didn’t want in there, like mushrooms, that I think are gross and would never eat in ordinary circumstances. But I somehow knew that I had to just trust that this odd assemblage would give me a strong base for the warm, comforting, healthy, winter-battling food I craved.
It was then, and is now, the same as I take stock of where I am in my life. There are these ideas kicking around, many alarmingly similar to those about which ’06 Me was concerned. Some are knobby, ill-formed, or altogether shapeless. Others are pale, like ghosts I’m trying to resurrect. Most of these are writing projects, one the same abandoned book proposal over which my Y2K+6 counterpart was pained. Others ideas are foreign as the components of my stock. I audibly gasped when I read in my own 2006 words that my thoughts kept turning to adoption. Just this morning, I told my husband that I think about adoption every day, and it’s likely that I’ve thought about it on a regular basis for at least four years, although I’m positive that it has been much longer.
So here I am in the third week of 2010, eating a lot of soup, and stewing over more ideas than ever—some that have become standard fare, and others that have recently contributed their own distinctive flavors. The soups I’ve made have had varying results--a statement which I’ll allow to stand as a preview for upcoming posts. And all the rest? I’m still waiting for it all to blend into something delicious.