Reflections for a New Year
Belated Happy New Year!
I’ve never been big on new year’s resolutions. Hastily made resolutions seem like short-term goals meant to be broken – things to do the first few weeks of the year then fall back into our old ways. That said, it’s always good to have some goals to motivate and inspire you throughout the year. Forget wanting to lose five pounds and going to the gym three times a week…what are things I wanted to accomplish this past year but didn’t get to? How can I build on successes of the last year? What can I do to make life easier and simpler for myself?
I’d love to share with you a few of my small but manageable goals for the year that relate to cooking and my blog:
Improve my photography skills. Photographs are a big part of a food blog and I have lots to learn about food photography. I need to practice more often and get to know my camera better. My biggest challenge in this area is with natural light. For best results, food should be photographed during the day in natural light. Unfortunately, the reality of my life is that it is dark when I leave for work and dark when I get home (at least at this time of year). Getting up early to cook and take photographs of food isn’t really an option when my alarm goes off at 5:30 each morning…my blog is a hobby and I’m sorry to say that sleep trumps blogging when it comes to the early morning hours! I’m not quite ready to invest in an external flash for my DSLR camera but I can experiment with dimmed lights and other ways to optimize photographs using what I have. On weekends and once the days get longer, I need to spend more time photographing in natural light conditions.
Use my cast iron skillet more often. Talk about a simple and attainable goal! I have a beautiful cast iron skillet that is perfect for searing, roasting and baking. There’s no reason I can’t incorporate it into my cooking more often. Ditto the adorable mini cast iron skillets we have.
Eat more whole grains. I have farro, bulgur and quinoa in the pantry. I already have them so why not use them in place of white rice or couscous?
Practice with my piping bag and tips. When decorating my gingerbread house, I realized my piping skills are pretty rusty. My goal is to bake sugar cookies for some of the holidays throughout the year and decorate them using my piping bag. I won’t get better without practice and who doesn’t like a yummy (and beautiful) sugar cookie?
What are your cooking goals for 2013?
Thanks to all my readers for the encouragement and support throughout the year. I’m so thankful you’ve made my little corner of the internet a part of your life. It always makes my day when someone says “I’ve been reading your blog and I love it!” Thanks for keeping me going and I look forward to a new year together!