I’m not much of a cook. I’d rather clean the kitchen and do the dishes over cook. But I do like to eat.
With that being said I figured I’d find an easy (and delicious!) recipe to whip up to add to my family’s Thanksgiving table. As most of you know, I’m Peruvian so I thought I’d be nice to make something with a Peruvian influence.
Lucuma is a subtropical fruit native to the Andean valleys of Peru. Some call the fruit the “Gold of the Incas,” “egg fruit,” or just plain ol’ superfood. If you live outside of Peru, you’ll have better luck finding the fruit as a powder (buy it from Amazon or your local health food store) which is better in my opinion. You can add it to smoothies, cottage cheese, yogurt, drinks, anything! I’ve read that lucuma tastes like a mango crossed with an apricot but I can’t really describe it for you (besides it being sweet and OMG lucuma!) because I’ve been eating lucuma-flavored ice cream since I was a child. If you’re interested in knowing some of it’s beneficial properties, feel free read more about it on LIVESTRONG.
Anyways, back to the cheesecake! The recipe is VERY easy and since I was a procrastinator and bought some ingredients the day before, I used cream cheese instead of neufchâtel cheese. The lady at Trader Joe’s told me they taste the same. I trust her. Oh, and I used a 9-inch graham cracker crust and I thought it was too small so maybe the 10-inch crust might work better! You can see my finished product pictured above. Yay, go me!
Enjoy! Find the Lucuma No-Bake Cheesecake with Cranberry Topping Recipe here.
What is the new normal?
According to the end-all reference Urban Dictionary, the new normal is the current state of being after some dramatic change has transpired.
The rest of the UD entry is gold. The new normal encourages one to deal with current situations rather than lamenting what could have been. Like, whoever wrote it needs to be my friend.
Feeling “normal” is something that I’ve been struggling with since the night of the accident. Deep down, I knew it was just a matter of time. Like that annoying cliché saying that makes you want to bop someone on the head as soon as the words leave their lips. “Time heals all.” *shudders* Time heals, that’s true. But does it heal all?
The great Sean Carter once said, ”after the show it’s the after party then after the tragic event it’s the mourning period.” Something like that. But my slightly altered rap lyric holds truth. The mourning period is inevitable.
We — feel free to exclude yourself if this doesn’t apply — mourn because essentially we lost our normality or what we considered normal. Mourning is necessary. Crying is essential. And most importantly, your worries are important because they’re important to you. Never let anyone tell you that “it’s not a big deal.”
When I used to talk about the car accident, my injuries and what I went through to recover, I always ended it with “it wasn’t too bad.” I’m still not sure why I felt the need to tack on a few words at the end, to completely minimize what I went through. I think I didn’t want to accept what had happened. Nah, that’s it. I didn’t want to accept any of it.
My body went through the motions but my mind hid in a safe place. In a place where I could easily jump out of my hospital bed and run. Safely padded from reality.
I remember the looks on my doctors’ and physical therapists’ faces when I’d ask if I’d ever be back to “normal.” “Time will tell but we can’t be sure.” TIME. So I held on to time as long as I could like it was a waiting list and I was waiting for the cure.
The only problem was that I never saw the need to deal with my changes because TIME. Instead, I focused on my past and honed in on what could have been. I began comparing myself to my old self, the “normal” one. I was obsessed with going back to the way I used to be. I refused to adapt. I didn’t want to meet my new self.
A wise lady once asked me, “why do you like making your life so difficult?” I replied, “if I adapt, I’ll be accepting that this is the way my life will have to be.” She smiled. “It doesn’t have to be forever. If this is temporary, there’s nothing wrong with making the transition easier and if this is permanent, well, at least you’ll be happy.”
It’s only in the latter half of 2013 where I find myself embracing my new normal. Making smaller changes to adapt without losing hope. Time heals, yes. And when you finally have the courage to welcome your entire self, flaws and all, then I guess that little cliché saying is true. Time will heal all.
Note: the picture is a piece of my medical reports snapped for dramatic purposes. dun dun dunnn.
Last night, while flipping through channels, I stumbled across a rerun of Friends and WOAH, it took me back to 2/3/4/5/6/7/8/9/10/11th grade.
Ok, I’m being dramatic. I probably really started watching this show in 6th grade and always out of order. Like I know what happens but it’s in jumbled order. Anywho, I feel like every show tries to bring back the epic 10-year sitcom run that Friends had. What a simple title too. Friends. Straight to the point. The plot lines were always evenly divided and the title indicated that it’s about the group and not one person. Maybe that’s what I loved about it. Or maybe I’ve always wanted that even 3-male-3-female friend ratio in a group. UGH IT’S ALL SO PERFECT.
So perfect in fact, that Rachel worked in a coffee shop and still made enough to live somewhere decent in New York City. The secret is in her hair.
Actually no, I tried the cut. No secret. Instead, I looked like a 12-year old soccer mom :(.
One more thing: Even though we, the late 80′s babies, didn’t understand it back then, the theme song makes perfect sense now.
“So no one told you life was gonna be this way. Your job’s a joke, You’re broke. You’re love life is D.O.A. It’s like you’re always stuck in second gear. Well it hasn’t been your day, your week, your month or even your year.”
Welp. Thank you Friends, for preparing me for my mid-upper-20s 15 years ahead.
I’d say I’m a good 5’9″ even though my doctor would beg to differ. He says I’m 5’7″ then I tell him he’s wrong. It’s a never-ending battle. I’ve always been the tall one in class, ever since kindergarten. I was too young to notice that I had to stand in the back row during class pictures. Whatever, I was still in them.
Growing up, I was obsessed with my mother’s shoes. It’s the first thing you run into when you learn to crawl. Shoes. — Maybe my parents should have thrown math books on the floor instead. Wonder what the outcome would have been. — At age five, I would stare at her shoe rack when she was out and grab the first pair of pumps that were at arm’s reach. Sure, I toppled over when I tried taking a few steps but I was looking fabulous, just like my mother.
In high school, I was still tall but by then 20% of the boys caught up or passed me. Still, I avoided wearing high heels in public even though I owned a few pairs. — Watching too many Beyonce music videos on MTV Jams had a girl begging her mother for some pretty shoes. — Anyways, I always thought I was too tall, too tall for 16-year-old boys.
Then I turned 21.
Suddenly, I didn’t care anymore. *cue Kanye’s “Can’t Tell Me Nothing”*. High heels became my bffs. Pumps, wedges, sandals, boots, anything with a 4-inch heel and up. I wasn’t picky. I learned how to strut, stand, run, climb up stairs, go down stairs and handle the torture. Heeled shoes gave my long feet a nice arch which made them look smaller (+1). Plus, posture wise — chest out, butt out and tight calves (+100000).
The shoes made me feel like a grown woman and not like a girl who just entered her 20s. No one was complaining either. In high school, I used to get stares or hear others whispering to each other, “look at her, she’s so tall.” In the real world, long legs are loved. Being tall is a luxury. Why else would so many women strap on painfully sexy shoes that makes them grow at least 5 inches?
And that click clack you hear on hard floors when a great pair of heels walks by? Forget about it. I felt like a show stopper when I was the one bringing on the ruckus. For me, heels symbolized femininity, sultriness and most importantly, confidence.
My love affair with high-heeled shoes ended abruptly in 2011. Ever since my car accident, my left foot refuses to cooperate with anything above one inch. I’ve been in my own shoe hell for two years because I couldn’t let go of my heels and what I thought they represented.
A woman is defined by the shoes she wears. That is the saying that is drilled into women’s heads through retail advertising and pop culture. When have you seen a celebrity walk the red carpet in a sexy pair of flats? Better yet, when has “sexy pair of flats” ever been put together in a sentence?
I know, I’m blowing up my first world problem. I can’t wear heels, big deal. I’m already tall so why would I need them? They hurt so why do I care? Outsiders say I’m lucky I can be comfortable in flats when I go out while they have to suffer in their shoes. Well that’s the choice they made and lucky for them, they have a choice.
The other day, I went to the store to try on a pair of heels that I’ve been lusting over for a while. My mother and sister both gripped my hands and helped me stand. — It took me back to when I was in the hospital in 2011 and a physical therapist and my father helped me stand for the first time in over a month. I wasn’t sure if I could do it right then but I knew it could be done. — I quickly sat back down after I felt my leg wobble. That was enough of a taste.
Patience is key in a recovery. I’ve said it before and I hate when people remind me that because it’s true. Recently, I tried to rush wearing heels (1.5-inch wedges) and ended up tripping and spraining my foot on my birthday. It was my body’s cruel and funny way of telling me I’m not ready.
I’m slowly adapting to life in shoes with a .05-inch heel or less. One day, I hope, they will be considered as glamorous as high heels and maybe magazines will spotlight the “sexiest flats on the red carpet.” For now, it only matters how I strive to feel in them. Feminine, flirty, confident, and unapologetically, a bad ass bitch.
Picture: Yogurt soju shots with Amaris (left) at Soop Sok Music Studio in Koreatown.
So, twenty effing six. *start panicking* 26 is 4 years away from 30. 26 places me at the end of my mid 20s, early late 20s. I told my abuelito I turned 26 to which he responded, “that’s it?” I guess it isn’t much to an 83 year old.
Beyonce is the reason I pierced my belly button in high school and why I made my mom venture with me through the fashion alleys in Downtown Los Angeles in search of Timberland-inspired knockoff heeled boots.
I was 16 back then.
Fast forward to July 1, 2013. The day Beyonce performed a second night at the Staples Center in Los Angeles for The Mrs. Carter Show World Tour. It also doubled as the day my Instagram feed had proof that Bey was a REAL human. A real human that wears glittery leotards without a sign of camel toe and whose makeup stayed perfectly on after dancing for two hours in six inch heels.