New Year, New Work

We celebrated the New Year sumptuously: games, pizza, and champagne with friends on Thursday night; a long, languid day of delicious food and old friends on Friday; a day spent at the Kandinsky exhibit at the Guggenheim, Cafe Sabarsky, and The Princess and the Frog with friends on Saturday; and church plus our favorite brunch spot on Sunday.

Tom went back to work very early yesterday morning. I worked too, but from home, and only kind of feel like I’m at work this week, since I have only two days in the office. But next week the semester starts, and so I am busily prepping materials for my two classes (one college writing class online, and two sections of the same research writing class in the actual classroom). The spring is a busy time, with several conferences and a lot of projects popping up, and so it’s important to be as organized as possible.

But all that organizing needs a respite, and so I have started recording the movies I watch along with starting the Fifty Two Fifty Two project. I haven’t finished a book yet this year, but I’ve gotten into Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout, the 2009 Pulitzer winner, which our book club is discussing next Tuesday, and I’ve read the first two interviews (Dorothy Day and Truman Capote) in the Paris Review Interviews, Volume 1 – which is completely delightful. I tend to read a whole bunch of books at once and finish them all on the same day.

Last: my doctor put me on a fairly restrictive diet because, as it turns out, I have Stage 1 hypertension – nothing to get too worried about, but also something I shouldn’t have at my age. And so I’m off dairy and gluten for a while, and eating a very specific amount of certain things. I found myself re-reading Jenni’s article from Comment a while back.

I’ve become quite in love with cooking and good food in the last year or two, enjoying the cheese counter at the local gourmet market and baking homemade bread, but I can receive these things again when I am well. It is good discipline for me to experience some “fasting” along with my feasting, and I suppose, in that sense, that Father Capon would approve.

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