After my meltdown the other night (for which I humbly apologize), I started wondering how many other women strive for perfection based on society's ideal as presented in magazines and television. We buy these glossy magazines picturing gorgeous homes and dream that, some day, we'll have a house that looks just like that. With the big kitchens and classy bathrooms. French doors that lead out to a secret garden with a pond and waterfall. Beautiful garden plots with not a weed in sight. Show-stopping gladiolus that win blue ribbons at the fair. Mile-high Lemon Meringue pies and Paella. We can do it! Hell, here's the recipe. And it gives us step-by-step instructions for putting in that pond and waterfall. All it takes is time, back-breaking labor and money.
And then we look around at our homes and our yards and our gardens. We look at our too-small kitchens and our worn out carpet. We see the bugs are eating the lettuce and the weeds! Oh my - the weeds! Instead of beautiful terra cotta patios we have grass beaten down by dogs and kids. Our garden paths are rabbit runs. Reality seems to pale in comparison to those glossy magazines.
Thank God for the internet and people who share their accomplishments, no matter how small. Like Natalia's Financier that she loves but could never find in Denver, so she made it her own self. (I thought she was looking for a banker!) Or Tanna's Fougasse bread that she thinks didn't come out quite right, but is so happy to be finally baking in her newly remodeled kitchen after a horrible leak completely destroyed her old one. Thank God for Kate at My Kitchen Garden as well as Farm Girl Fare showing us her garden plots gone to weeds or dug up by dogs. But, look there! Look at that volunteer basil. How cool is that?
Thankfully I've stopped buying those stupid magazines. Now my role models are people like Ivonne of Cream Puffs in Venice. Although I'm completely jealous of her great pictures, I could care less about making tarts or cakes that are so beautiful they make your heart skip a beat. And Joe Pastry who weekly makes some kind of bread and a dessert. We never get to actually SEE these items because he is busy analyzing his weekly projects right down to the molecular level. No pictures, but by God you're gonna learn something! Then there's Janet from The Old Foodie. It's hard to describe what Janet writes. She's a foodie who loves history, and where she gets her information is a total mystery to me. But it's interesting to see the way cooking has evolved. The girls over at Go Fug Yourself have taught me what style really is with side-splitting humor. And The Waiter who, through his gentle dialog, teaches us all about how to live a good and balanced life.
There's so many more, but you get the picture. Life is full of changes, some for the better, some for the worse. I guess its what you do with them that matters. And quite frankly I don't know anyone who lives in a perfect house with a perfect yard and garden. Or has the time OR the money to do all that crap. And at my age the back-breaking labor part is definitely out.
Maybe I should buy me a red hat. I'll wear it pulling my weeds.