Back to Basics.

I used to enjoy grocery shopping. I loved taking the time to plan a week’s worth of meals and think about what I would feature on my blog. I would spend an hour or two searching for recipes and perusing cookbooks to find the perfect things. Then I would head to the store and wander the aisles, choosing the best produce and reading labels. It was meditative and fulfilling for me. It got me excited about cooking and eating and blogging.

But somewhere along the way, I lost that joy. In an effort to maximize my time off, also known as “my time to take photos, edit photos, cook food, write blog posts, manage social media, watch tutorials, advance my photography skills, etc., etc., etc.,” I started going grocery shopping after my work day ended on Wednesday afternoon. That way, I had three full days “off” to do all of the abovementioned things.

But the grocery store is inevitably jam-packed with people on Wednesday afternoons — I have no idea why — which makes shopping frustrating and hurried. And because that’s when I’ve just completed my work week at a physically demanding job, I’m often too exhausted to do the recipe searching and planning that I should, resulting in not only half-baked (ha ha) cooking and photography plans, but also a tendency to forget certain things on the list or buy things we don’t need.

So, enough is enough. It’s time to get back to basics.

Don’t get me wrong; I love what I’m doing. I have been working very hard to improve my photography skills. I’ve started taking portraits and headshots. I’ve been researching photographic technique and lighting tips and applying them to my food photography. I’ve been cramming Photoshop skills and tutorials down my own throat.  Basically I’ve given myself a second job, so although I’m extraordinarily fortunate to have three days off, I spend much of them working. And although it is tiring and sometimes difficult, I love the momentum I’m building and the direction I’m heading. It’s just time to rebalance.

The start of a new year is as good a time as any a time as any to rethink how and more importantly WHEN I’m doing things. I need to keep myself focused on my photography goals, but get back to enjoying the planning, cooking and shopping aspects again. That means making some meaningful time for them. Some simple reorganizing of my schedule ought to do the trick. That, and reminding myself that doing things differently doesn’t mean they’re any better or any worse, just different.

So in the spirit of simplicity and getting back to basics, I give you these blueberry muffins. That’s about as basic as it comes. Simple and sweet.

Happy New Year! Here’s to finding balance for us all. A few of my recent portraits are below. For the muffin recipe, check out my other blog: Buried Carrots.

2 responses to “Back to Basics.

  • Tanja

    I’ll trade you some of aforementioned momentum for my indulgent shopping. I’ve been doing the opposite. Taking the time to get all the right things, coffee in hand, at my favorite places and then I don’t blog or photograph at all! Now that you’ve put it all out there though you’ll get where you want to go!

    • Karen Milling

      Thanks for the vote of confidence. I’ve managed to get myself into a pretty good routine of a post a week for the food blog. It is hard to find balance. I think I’m constantly striving for it. Something will inspire you soon and be just the kick in the pants you need to get you taking photos and blogging again.

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