Monday, November 11, 2013

Food is About Everything

La Cumbre Peak glows coral in the sunrise. Santa Barbara's October is teeming with creative juice. And my life is exploding, at least in my mind. So much, so much is arising: ideas, plans, passions. I'm afraid of plans, afraid of acting to quickly, of taking one direction and leaving another behind. Before I take action, I need to know which is the path that matters. I watch opportunities swirling around me: roads, streets, hallways appear in my mind's eye, and I bide my time. I boil water, sweep the deck, pet the dog and prepare a pot of potatoes, carrots and Swiss chard.

Food is driving my days, not in the sense of binge eating, or eating for sport -- but food anew -- reading about nutrition and acting on the knowledge. The Zen teacher, Shunryu Suzuki, said, "Preparing food is not just about yourself and others. It is about everything."

My regimen is not rigid, I am not holding fast to rules. Food goes deep. Changing eating habits is possibly as difficult as kicking drugs. The way we eat and our choice of food is instilled from infancy. It is in our cellular memory. For me to make a dramatic change in the food I eat, requires giving myself slack. I need to ease into it and to let the fact that I feel better -- more vital and alive -- be my encouragement.

There are so many different diets, and in the long run, who knows which will be the best? Which brings me back to waiting and watching and going slow.


These October days nudge me like an affectionate puppy with a pink tongue and a wet nose. And I am beside myself with all that is unfolding within me and around me. And still, I am cleaning, clearing and organizing. At the moment, this seems to be the heart of my life and the ground.


  1. An ambitious and intriguing project, but I see no followers gallery to sign myself onto. However, I shall add this site to the blogroll at "Trainride Of The Enigmas" and keep current with it. My compliments and admiration,

  2. Geo,

    So nice to see you here. And thank you for your encouragement. As this site is still in development, and the internal formatting here has changed, it may take some time to address the issue of followers. I'm glad you pointed this out.

    I'd like to send you wishes for inspiration, but in reading your blogs, it's obvious you've got that covered.

    Sincerely, Anitra

  3. Hi Aneet!

    Just wanted to say hi and wish you and your family a joyous holiday and a very happy and healthy new year!

    Speaking of health, that's a great thing to address since it seems you touched on that subject here. During the holidays, like most, I seem to get off my normal path of good eating and exercise to indulge in some of those annual goodies. But....the diet that works best for me I found out,is a diet that excludes wheat, red meat, sugar and of course certain foods that can trigger kidney stones. (I have a list of these in my head!).

    Whether it be appetizing food or beautiful scenery, you always have something great to share on your posts.

    Wishing you the best of the best for the new year and always.....


    1. Johnathan,

      Great to see you here. Hope you are braving the Holiday throng without too much discomfort. At the moment the scene is thick. I so appreciate your words in general, and here, now, on the subject of food and health, I can really relate. I agree with you about the fact that we all lose our way with our diets at this time of the year. It is a real challenge.

      The foods you have listed as what to avoid I find very interesting. I too have found these same foods to often be a burden to the body. At the moment there are numerous books attesting to this fact. It's not easy to chose foods that make us thrive (and especially during this season,) but I'm in your corner.

      I wrote this piece quite some time before the holidays, and it grows more applicable by the day. I am so delighted that you have paid my new blog a visit. I am honored by your presence.

      Have a beautiful holiday, Jonathan, and a happy, healthy and inspiring New Year.

      Sincerely, Anitra

  4. Hi Anitra,

    Very poignant. It seems it is so difficult to eat healthy given our current food offerings and the need to feed so many people on the planet. I guess what works for me is to get variety and everything in moderation. I imagine Santa Barbara has many great farmer's markets.

    Wishing you happy, healthy holidays! And great food, too!


    1. Alan,

      Hello, hello. I think you've got it right in eating everything in moderation. I think this is a wise choice. And yes, we do have a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables available in Santa Barbara.

      Thank you Alan for your holiday good wishes. Let me return them to you along with the great food! I love that.

      Take care, Anitra

  5. Hi again, Anitra,

    Perhaps the secret is getting the right amount of apples as the stunning beauty about halfway down this page - - appears to be advocating? [Note: The site is a personal blog written by a columnist with the Minneapolis Star Tribune newspaper and I'm not affiliated with the site in any way.]

    I have to say if the proverbial Eve worked a look like this, well, Adam stood no chance!

    Well played, Anitra!


    1. Alan, hello,

      I was so surprise to find out that your Eve was moi! Really like the photo and I will try to find a place to use it in the future. Delighted that you took the time to share it Alan. Thank you.

      And oh, once again, Happy New Year :)

  6. Anitra,
    I am quite surprised that you struggle with food choices. It certainly appears that you have made wise choices due to your healthy physique, outlook and demeanor.

    As days continue to zip by on the calendar, we are forced to consider alternatives in our daily lives that we swore would never happen years ago. I have embraced these changes as a privilege of aging. I embrace my gray temples and wrinkling brow as a sign of wisdom and experience. Whatever stage of life, I will welcome it, enjoy it and squeeze every ounce from it. You strike me as having the same attitude.

    I wish you a very happy and prosperous 2014! Thanks so much for sharing your perspective online.

    Richard in GA

    1. Richard,

      Hello. It's delightful to hear from you. I enjoy your writing, the tenor and the cadence of your words. I also enjoy hearing that you too savor life much the way I do. I am all for your philosophy.

      I do struggle with food choices more at certain times than others. As I have a high metabolism, weight has never been a problem. For me it's more a matter of wanting to thrive rather than just survive. And as I said above, I need to give myself some slack now and then before getting back on the health horse and keeping on keeping on.

      I appreciate your good wishes, Richard, let me extend my hopes for your happy, healthy and prosperous New Year as well, ~ Anitra