The Sunday Salon – On Lazy Sundays

I’ve noticed quite a few bloggers coming back to The Sunday Salon today!! So I decided I’d revisit this old friend as well. I haven’t done a Sunday Salon post in quite sometime. And what better thing to post about than just the goings on of a lazy Sunday on exactly that :p The heat down here in New Orleans has just rained down exhaustion on me. If you look back on my blog in prior years, I tend to just disappear pretty much completely around this time of the year, reemerging sometime around late August…but I haven’t done that this year! I think I know why and it has to do with my garden.

It’s kept my spirits up, it’s given me a bit of daily happiness. I can’t sing the praises of having a vegetable garden enough. Sometimes I’m not entirely unconvinced that I don’t have a uterus. I want a child so bad, but that’s not in my near future unless I decide to adopt at this point. So my garden gives me something to care for and to tend and it just generally makes me happy. I read an article about this in Urban Farm and gardening really has been shown to make people more happy. There’s a number of psychologists now who do a type of therapy called ecopsychotherapy that engages people with nature, gardening included. I’ve suggested gardening to a couple of my clients, but they’re still at the phase where they’re a little too “manly” for that :/ Hopefully we can eventually break down some of those barriers.

But anyway, that’s a very good thing! I certainly have heat related depression, and this summer with the way my migraines have been, mixed with a very stressful work situation and just a lot of chaos in my own head, I’m glad that I’m making it through without falling into that funk! Oh, and more good news, I’ve managed to make it through today without a headache!

Reading continues to be somewhat of a slump. I still just have too many books going at once. Right now I’m down to three. I just can’t help starting another one whenever I finish one!! Still reading Love’s Executioner by Yalom, and I added two more to the mix. The first is a young adult dystopian book that I’m loving called Unwind by Neal Shusterman. It’s basically about a future where abortion has been made illegal, but parents have the choice to “unwind” their children at a certain age where the kid is basically broken down and their parts are given to other people who need them. Lots to be discussed there! Also reading Coop by Michael Perry and it’s just such a wonderful book!! About a man and his family trying to start a farm, but it’s so much more than that. It’s really about him as a father, as a husband and just as him.

And finally, I made the most delicious apple cake today!! It’s Beth Fish’s recipe from her Weekend Cooking post yesterday πŸ˜€ It’s perfectly moist, not overly sweet, and fluffy as can be! And the apples are deeeeeelicious! Here’s a pic. And head over to her blog for the recipe!

24 Responses

  1. That looks delicious!

    Head over to Georgia in November and you can play with baby Atticus! I plan on surrounding him with booknerds to guide his bookish path.

  2. I’m glad you’re enjoying Unwind! I need to read more Shusterman!

  3. Yum! I seem to be baking as much as I am reading this summer. It is making me as happy as gardening seems to be making you.

    Unwind, eh? Must check this out further. What about unwinding a spouse or a particularly difficult boss?

  4. The cake looks great! I can see how gardening could be a great tool for therapy…work on those “macho” men and I’m sure they’ll be thankful! Glad to know that you didn’t have a migraine today πŸ˜€

  5. Farming is a pretty “macho” job- it’s just large gardening! Isn’t Coop a great book?

    That cake looks delicious. πŸ™‚

  6. Amanda, And it tastes 10 times better than it looks πŸ™‚ I’d totally love to come visit in November πŸ˜€ Surrounding them at a young age by book nerds is by far the best idea I can think of πŸ˜‰

    Becky, I’m liking much more than I even thought I would! It’s really a fantastic book. Have you read the whole series?

    Debnance, Well that can’t be a bad thing at all :p Wish I was there to test everything you’re baking! You know…I’m totally guilty of thinking that same thing when it comes to my boss at times :/

    Staci, It came out really good!! I’ll continue to work at the guys in therapy πŸ˜‰ One seems somewhat open to gardening. It really does work great and it’s very meditative! And thanks for the good wishes on the migraine front πŸ™‚

  7. Other Chris, There you go!! I have a brand new way of putting it! I’ll just tell them it’s small scale farming :p They can even pull out the riding mower and pretend it’s a tractor if they want :p Coop really is fantastic! Really enjoying it!!

  8. Chris, I’m glad to hear you haven’t had a migraine today! I’ve been having a few but it could be worse! πŸ˜€ Enjoy your garden and happy reading.

  9. The uterus comment really cracked me up. I’m glad your garden is keeping you from the summer blues. Haven’t felt much like gardening, this year, myself. But, gardening is definitely great therapy. Even though a lot of our flowers and almost all of our veggies were killed because the person who promised to water while we were on vacation turned out to be Seriously Unreliable, I really love walking down the walk to our front door because it’s so, so pretty with all those flowers blooming. Sickly flowers, but still . . . I love them.

    Happy Sunday!

  10. hooray for no migraine!!!!!!
    wow that cake looks good!.. anytime you want to move to fla with you “other mother” you are welcome! Who wouldn’t want a son who loves to garden and bake?!!! yiiiiihawww! lol kinda silly men don’t think gardening is manly.. can’t say I know of any “female farmers”..but a garden is a way to be a farmer with it taking 12 hrs a day to take care of it!

  11. Unwind sounds interesting. I think my YA book club is reading that soon.

  12. “Sometimes I’m not entirely unconvinced that I don’t have a uterus.” That sentence had me cracking up. I love your garden updates. If I ever concede to get my hands dirty, I may start a garden too. I need something to tend since all I ever do is write, work, web browse…and the web browsing gives me migraines!

  13. Yay for lazy Sunday’s! πŸ˜€

  14. I hear ya! I detest oppressive TX heat, and I generally hibernate indoors in the cool. The gardening situation has made me much happier as well, and it gets me outside in the morning and evening when the temps are doable. Hurray for cathartic gardening!

  15. OMG…I WANT THAT CAKE!!! It can’t possibly taste as good as it looks! (Actually, I’m sure it does–I’m just saying that to make myself feel better since you said you wouldn’t send me a piece. :P)

    Oh Chris, I do hope that urge to have kiddos doesn’t change after a week here ;), because you’re going to be one fantastic daddy!

    HOORAY FOR A HEADACHE-FREE DAY!!! And I’m hoping today is making two days in a row!!!

  16. I get really busy in the summer months too! Gardening makes me so happy- I never realized it would until I started growing things. I get so excited to see things sprouting, and unfolding, and getting bigger, and then making fruit! every step of the way is a thrill. I’m so glad your garden is cheering you up too. I get blue in winter, when there’s nothing to do outside… but then I fiddle with houseplants ha ha.

    Unwind sounds something like Never Let Me Go.

  17. Isn’t gardening wonderful? I sometimes forget how good I feel being out there until I actually get out into the dirt. It always gets me out of my head and into my heart! That cake looks delish..I will try that recipe. Have a good week, Chris.

  18. Vasilly, Sorry to hear that you’ve been having migraines too 😦 I feel so bad for anyone that has them…they’re so damn miserable! And thanks!

    Nancy, Glad I could give you a laugh :p Sorry to hear that your back up watering person turned out to be not too reliable 😦 That’s really sad that the poor plants went thirsty. Your yard sounds so lovely!!! And all the pictures I see always look so beautiful!! I really need to make it up there sometime. I actually may do that sooner than later. I have to email you back. I researched headache clinics all day today and couldn’t find any…so I may go ahead and just make a trip up there after my trip to Debi.

    Deslily, Hooray for no migraines indeed!!! I need to at least come and VISIT sometime, eh? So many places I want to go, but seriously, I need to make a roadtrip…and if I do, I’ll pack an apple cake for you πŸ˜‰ I’m totally with you on the gardening front! I’m going to have to start using that one…I’ll just tell the guys that it’s small scale farming :p

    T.Y., :p It’s totally true, lol. You should TOTALLY start a garden!! You would rock at it! And yeah…computers definitely don’t help with headaches. Even when I do have a migraine I can’t peel myself away from the damn screen :/

    Darren, Yay indeed!

    Andi, Same here! I’m not a morning person AT ALL so I get outside normally about 4 or 5 in the afternoon when it becomes a bit more tolerable. In the middle of the day, I really can’t be out there for man than a few minutes without sweating my ass off!

    Debi, Oh but it is as good as it looks!! Hey, if you really want me to send you a piece I will…but don’t get mad at me when you get some sort of mildewy mess in your mailbox :p And don’t worry, that urge to have kids will not change when I visit..if anything, it’ll just get worse. In fact, you may have to check my suitcase when I’m leaving >> There may be a Stevens in there.

    Jeane, I’m totally the same way!! I’m out there like 4 or 5 times a day when I can be checking to see if there’s anything new :p I’m really lucky down here in that it’s warm enough of a climate that I can grow stuff pretty much all year! And yep, Unwind is pretty similar to Never Let Me Go in theory.

    Gavin, Oh it is indeed πŸ™‚ I wish I could just dig up the whole yard. I have a feeling I would if this house were mine. I can totally relate to it getting you out of your head and into your heart. The cake did come out really good! I highly recommend the recipe! Hope you have a good week too, Gavin.

  19. Aw, for what it’s worth, I think you’d be a great dad. If we lived closer, you could borrow Patrick any time. I’m sure he’d love to help you with your garden πŸ˜€

    Yay, for no migranes πŸ™‚ ❀

  20. >>Sometimes I’m not entirely unconvinced that I don’t have a uterus.

    Um, can I tell you how much I love you for that sentence?! Although I think it totally sucks you’re not a dad when you’d make the best one ever. *big hugs*

    And OMG, I’m going to totally come steal your Chris-grown, organic okra!

  21. Well, you know, we were a little desperate and I had my husband ask his assistant to water and check our porch for parcels. He was actually in the process of moving into a McMansion, so he had an excuse. But, we used him once before (because he lived in our neighborhood — the McMansion is elsewhere) and he didn’t do a very good job that time, either, but nothing died. And, there weren’t as many parcels.

    Did you get my note? Did you try to find Dr. V. in Gulfport? I don’t know if those things on the internet are up-to-date, but if he’s not available and you decide to come up here, just give me plenty of warning. You can come to my house and then I’ll drive you over to Jackson because the headache clinic is in a weird place and that way you can pay attention but not have to worry about getting lost. It’s in such a quirky building. You go past restaurant seating to get to the elevator!

    My gardens are completely overgrown but I think you’d still like to see them, weeds and all. That would be great. πŸ™‚

  22. Mmmmm … apple cake. That looks yummy! I’m heading over to Beth Fish’s blog to get that recipe. Thanks for pointing to it πŸ™‚

    I find gardening very therapeutic. It is so different than what I do for a living. With gardening I can touch something tangible and see results and it keeps me “in the moment.” I’m sure it uses a completely different part of my brain than what is used for my work. I also like the way my mind can wander while I garden.

  23. I’ve missed Sunday Salons as well–and they’re definitely among my favorite posts to read (goes back to glimpsing into the personal, I think). I can’t believe how therapeudic your garden has been for you. You’re actually convincing me that I need to try it next year–even though my husband is allergic to fresh fruits and vegetables (all…no joke). It just gets so hard with the heat during the summers and little rainfall–although I’d love to get one of those rain barrels you wrote about several months ago. We’ll see! πŸ˜‰

  24. Gardening got me through the worst part of graduate school. It’s an amazing stress reducer. This post made me happy and sad; I hope you do become a dad someday.

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