Sunday, September 19, 2010
I've always been creative out of convenience and necessity. For example, I probably wouldn't decide to make a peach pie, take inventory of my cabinets, go to the store to pick up any missing ingredients and then come home to bake. I would, however, wander into the kitchen at midnight, see that I seem to have what I need to throw together something....chocolatey? Something with fruit? Cake? And then I'd proceed to review my fridge and cabinets until I figured out something that I had all of the ingredients for and that also, you know, sounded good. Likewise, I have a stack of things in my "project pile" that likely won't get tackled until a) I happen to come across, by chance, the exact missing item that is needed to finish said project or b) I absolutely need to finish said project by a certain time.
I used to fight this part of myself. I had this vague picture of being super organization girl, with a perfectly stocked pantry, the exact tools I needed to bake well, a million different fabrics stacked neatly in their place (in my colossal craft room, of course) and my ideas stored in some tidy fashion, waiting to be executed in good time. I'm sure this person exists somewhere, but it's not me. I've slowly started to figure out that creating something out of what you have in front of you can be super rewarding. It's challenging, especially when I'm working in the kitchen, and I like those moments spent cruising my shelves and my brain, adding and subtracting, weighing my choices. I like digging through my bags of crafty things and waiting to be inspired by one thing or another.
I figured some of this stuff out when I recently spent a month in rural Alaska. I learned to "make do", as my momma likes to say, and making do isn't a bad gig when you have rhubarb and raspberries and blueberries growing a stone's throw from your back door, and a kind neighbor with a garden to die for a half a mile away. One of my first nights there I gathered some wild rhubarb and some raspberries to make a cobbler. Not finding any baking dishes of any kind in the kitchen, I ended up popping it into a cast iron skillet. Necessity, meet delicious.