mold, going vegan for awhile, and my summer reading list

Before I write anything, behold the beautiful mold specimen that I discovered in my refrigerator. I believe there are about seven different strands here. I’m not one to openly brag about outdated contents of my fridge, but I just found this to be too amazing not to share.


A diverse community of around seven mold strands living in Philadelphia.

We tend to think of mold as decay, but it’s just life brilliantly thriving on a different level. It reminds me of what I Alan Watts said about life and death:

“…because death is the source of life, just as we see in nature when the leaves fall from the trees, they mold and rot, and this supplies humus from which more plants can grow. It’s a cycle. But in every way, symbolic and otherwise, human beings try to stop that cycle.”

If you’re in the mood to ponder the meaning of life and death, here is the full audio:

I began listening to Alan while folding laundry (which seems a never-ending task when raising a toddler). I’ve taken to listening to him while I cook now, too, because I just find his insights refreshing. If you’re interested, just search for him on YouTube and find many of his teachings with seriously catchy titles.

I said last time that I would write a story, and since then I’ve written two smidgens of stories in my journal, cried a tiny bit when I compared myself to a successful children’s book writer that I’m reading, and then normalized my mood with 30 push-ups and 90 sit-ups while my daughter crawled all over me. I also whipped a vegan curry where I singed the cumin seeds and ended up picking them out one by one because I was afraid they would taint the taste. It was tasty, after all. Then I made vegan, gluten-free muffins. They weren’t a huge hit with my partner (because he’s still in that phase of expecting all healthy food to taste exactly like the buttery, rich original version), but my daughter loved them. I did, too, which is why I ate three in a row.

I’ve gone vegan and gluten free, as you may have guessed. It’s mostly to support my partner, who is battling a debilitating back disease called Ankylosing Spondylitis, but also for myself. I will post more about this soon.

Finally, I’d like to share my summer reading list. I’m reading these books because as I begin to write my own stories, they manifest as children’s stories. It inspired me to read those children’s books that mesmerized me as a child. These books (and their book covers) completely enchanted me, and I want to go back there and relive that childlike feeling. Just for fun, but also for a bit of research.

James and Giant Peach
The Secret Garden
Indian in the Cupboard
Bridge to Terabithia 

Plus the book I’m reading now, which is new: The Girl Who Drank the Moon

Wishing you all a good day!

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