Wow, if this blog and I were friends in real life, I would have understandably been given the cold shoulder for not holding up my end of the bargain in our shared communication. It has been over two months since I paid any attention to this cherished space and given myself permission to get lost in its warm embrace. I could blame a myriad number of outside circumstances, but the only thing I have to blame is myself.
It is so easy to become so consumed by life that we let our simple pleasures fall to the wayside. Between work, drafting novels, and spending time volunteering for our local food bank, I lost sight of the things that truly bring me back to myself. Creating things in my kitchen, especially soup, is the easiest way for me to feel grounded again. But, until today, I have regarded my kitchen with indifference. It had become just another room in my house, and I had forgotten how much of my heart beats within its four walls.
Not only does creating something from scratch remind me of my dad’s reckless abandon in the kitchen, making soup sparks a different part of my creativity, and sharing those soups with my family brings me great joy. Like my writing journey, I never know what the voices in my head will tell me to do, but almost every soup is something exciting and new. No two soups, even if I make the same thing again and again, are ever the same because I don’t follow a recipe. That is true freedom.
My writer’s brain has been blocked this week, but taking the time to put my skills back to work in my kitchen has dislodged the obstacle that was quelling my creative writing. There is a reason my characters like to cook, and that reason has reminded me to get back to basics and start from a familiar place to allow myself the freedom to put my trust back in the voices in my head. They are not controlling my brain, they are merely shining a light in a direction I had not anticipated.
Two soups are now being slow-cooked into submission in my kitchen, and the neurons of my writing brain have lifted their noses to deeply inhale the aroma of motivation. Everyone is familiar with the adage ‘stop and smell the roses’, but in my case it is ‘stop and smell the soup’. Just that brief moment of taking the time to allow the familiar smells to permeate my senses has opened a new door into the book I will soon finish writing.
When we were children, my mom’s way of letting us know dinner was ready was to yell ‘soup’s on’. Well, the soup is on in more than one way in my house. The crockpots may be filled with delicious ingredients, but my brain is now filled with a profusion of ideas to get this book finished. Soup’s on, indeed!