Cooking is a craft, too (and will save your sanity as much as knitting or painting)

Well, the first month of the year is done and I feel like my entire body breathed a big sigh of relief the second the clock ticked past midnight on Friday. With very good reason.

I had two job interviews in two weeks — one for a teaching job at one of the city colleges, one for a part-time job at the university where I received my master’s degree. If the city college accepts my credentials (as they have for other people from my program), I’ll be teaching two English 101 classes in the fall. The other job is still up in the air (i.e. interviewed by the supervisor and department head, currently under review). And my work with the art college begins again on Monday, so we’re coming to the end of the tunnel.

Having no shifts and just a few commissions for the month of January was occasionally nerve-wracking. I’m very good at paying bills and keeping myself busy. But to fulfill the first depleted a lot of my supplementary income, which prevented trips to the craft store for supplies, which, in turn, hindered the second.

The one thing I could justify spending extra money on was groceries and, as the pressure mounted, I kept myself busy by looking for new recipes and different ways to stretch the natural ingredients I like to buy regularly.

In the past week, I made:

– a quart of french onion soup
– spicy black bean burgers
– red death salsa
– hot mustard dip
– Cajun french fries
– Greek salad dressing
– four cups of long grain brown rice
– one cup of dry black beans (prep, soaked overnight)
– one cup of dry chickpeas (prep, soaked overnight)
– grilled cheese sandwiches with sliced tomatoes and cayenne mayonnaise
– tzatziki sauce
– shepherd’s pie with homemade mashed potatoes
– iced coffee concentrate
– homemade tomato soup
– spaghetti squash (cooked, flaked, stored in fridge)
– vegetable stew (slow cooker)

Six days later, I’ve had to wash all of my dishes and I’m running out of Tupperware to store things in.

It’s good to know that, though I don’t have a lot, I can do a lot with what I have. And I feel as good when my refrigerator is full of ingredients and dishes as when I’ve finished a shelf full of dolls and scarves.

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~ by blackmoodcraft on February 3, 2013.

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