Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Bye For Now

I haven't been feeling very creative lately or inspired to blog. I used to try to make a blog post about once a week but I only want to create content that I am proud of and that I find meaningful and lately, probably as part of my grief, I just haven't been feeling like it. More accurately, I haven't been feeling creative in a public way. I have been writing lots of poetry and some songs, but nothing I want to share right now. And I'm not sure when or if I will feel like sharing it.

I've been considering ending this blog but part of me wants to still have this space available for me to post travel recaps, recipes, book reviews, and things like that when I am motivated. I just don't know if I will feel that way again.
I thought about starting a new blog that is specifically a book blog, or specifically a fashion blog, or something, but I don't think I would enjoy that. The point of The Other Dani is that it encompasses all the things I am interested in. 

I started this blog in 2010, when I was only 21 years old, still in school and still living at home. My life has changed so much since then and I have been so lucky to have this space to work through my quarter-life crisis, and to figure out who I am as I grew into an adult in this world. But maybe I am done with this chapter of my life?

Part of my grief has been not wanting to change from the person my Dad knew me as. How I looked, where I worked, where I lived, etc, while he was still alive was how he knew me, and if I change from that in any way I'll be a person he will never know. But I know that I will have to grow and change as long as I'm alive, of course I will. It's just been hard accepting that in some ways.

And I think that's why part of me wants to hold on to this blog, and in a way, my younger self and who I have been here. But I want to focus my creative energy on other things for a while.
And I just needed to write this post to relieve myself of some of the pressure I've been feeling for the last few months when week after week goes by and I don't post anything here, or I post a few simple photos and nothing else.

I want to step away for a while. And maybe I'll come back, but I'm not making any promises right now. Thank you for everything.
I'll end this the way I started it. 

Bye for now,


Wednesday, March 16, 2016

A Modern Way to Cook by Anna Jones review

I bought a new cookbook a couple weeks ago - A Modern Way to Cook by Anna Jones and I'm very excited about it. The subtitle of the book is "Over 150 quick, smart, and flavour-packed recipes for every day." The cookbook is completely vegetarian, and many of the recipes are vegan or can easily be adapted to be vegan, and suggested adaptations are provided in the book for vegans. It's a really lovely book, with photos for nearly every recipe, and the pages are matte so you can write your own notes in if you want. 

In the introduction of the book, Jones makes some promises - that the food is "delicious, everyday food that will always be ready in a life-friendly time," that the recipes include tricks to speed things up while cooking, that the ingredients will make you feel good, that vegetables will be the focus, and her "hope is that, over time, these recipes will make you more aware of what you put into your body." 

In the opening pages of the book, there are two helpful sections for those new to cooking - "Equipment for quick cooking" which outlines a short list of things that will help you make the recipes in the book - sharp knives, a kettle, a saucepan, etc. And "a few notes on ingredients" which goes over a few basic ingredients that are handy to have in the kitchen, what types Jones has and what she uses them for - things like coconut oil, olive oil, salt, etc. 

Something I love about this cookbook is that every recipe has the combined prep and cooking time in the corner of the page, and the serving size noted. The cookbook is actually organized by the amount of time recipes take, with sections titled "in the time it takes to set the table," "ready in twenty," "on the table in half an hour," etc.
Another unique feature in this book are these handy flowcharts throughout, which give ideas for 'build-your-own' type omelettes, stir fries, salads, and "goodness bowls." They are very easy to follow and give lots of good ideas for recipes. 

I've been very inspired and excited by this book and so far I have tried 4 new recipes from the book, and all of them have been very easy to cook and very good to eat. 

Green pea and coconut soup

Kale, tomato and lemon magic one-pot spaghetti

Smoky pepper and white bean quesadillas

Gently spiced sweet potato and quinoa bowls.

I would recommend this book to any vegetarians or vegans looking for simple, creative, delicious new recipes, or for people who are looking to try more vegetarian and vegan recipes in their lives. I've really been enjoying it and can't wait to keep cooking my way through it!