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quickly changing things; a cake

I wish it weren't so hard for me to post now. It's as if I've lost the knack. How can something that was once natural become no longer natural? Because that's what it feels like: like there was a fluidity and ease before, and now there's not. I have some theories on the why of this, but they're not very coherent.

Meanwhile, I had photos stored up on my camera. Some evanescent things, like my neighbor's pussy willows, already transitioning from shiny grey buds to delicate, fringed, minute flowers:

And a minor snow (on the day that dumped more of the stuff on Boston), melting away, shielded by the shade of the lattice on our porch:

And I built a cake from pancakes for the tall one, whose birthday was the other day. Here are the pancakes, being made.

I layered them with whipped cream and frozen strawberries**, then covered the whole thing with whipped cream. It formed this impressive hulk:

Cutting into it was fun--there were all these tiny layers, like sedimentary rock, or like something from an actual cake shop (in spite of amateurish exterior). It was pretty good, except for the aftertaste from the strawberries.

**Unfortunately, without noticing, I'd bought "lite" strawberries. I realized this when I took a swipe of the syrup and tasted that unmistakable aftertaste of artificial sweetener. In the past few months I've accidentally bought zero-calorie yogurt and "lite" jam, both times only realizing it when I taste that telltale taste. Behind mango, apricot, and strawberry, there it is. The moral of the story is, be very, very careful about the item you reach for on the shelf.


( 48 comments — Leave a comment )
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Mar. 24th, 2016 12:15 pm (UTC)
I love the first two pictures.

Why even use artificial sweetener with strawberries?
Mar. 24th, 2016 04:22 pm (UTC)

But really I know the answer: sometimes you want sweetened strawberries (I did, for instance, at that moment), but if you're diabetic or have other conditions, you can't have the sugar/calories. So that's why. I just have to be careful about what I pick up.
(no subject) - yamamanama - Mar. 24th, 2016 04:57 pm (UTC) - Expand
Mar. 24th, 2016 01:54 pm (UTC)
Lovely, lovely evanescent things. I especially love the Snow creating Great Works of Modern Art, briefly.

Yes. So often a careless moment in the supermarket can result in sweetener ambush.
Mar. 24th, 2016 04:23 pm (UTC)
Snow on the Porch: A Collaborative Artwork
Mar. 24th, 2016 02:02 pm (UTC)
Pussy willows and lattice-work look fantastic! As does the pancakecake! :-D
Mar. 24th, 2016 04:23 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Mar. 24th, 2016 02:35 pm (UTC)
Could it be like a writing ebb tide?

I love that top photo.
Mar. 24th, 2016 04:25 pm (UTC)
In some senses, yes: that's part of it. But I think other things come into it. But it's okay--I'm going to keep on posting! It's just that I can see that it's less than I used to.
Mar. 24th, 2016 03:14 pm (UTC)
I miss the long posts, but one does what one can. I appreciate when you do post, even if it's chiefly photos, because those are also communicative. I love the powdered sugar snow!
Mar. 24th, 2016 04:26 pm (UTC)
Thanks. You're right; we do what we can. Sometimes I get glass-half-empty about it, but the glass is very definitely half full, too, and I do enjoy it.
Mar. 24th, 2016 03:55 pm (UTC)
I'm running into the same thing. I don't know if it's because I'm then trying to crosspost across several platforms or if it's just that the dynamics of writing and daily life have changed. I know there's things I want to blog about, but at the end of the day...I've not done it.
Mar. 24th, 2016 04:29 pm (UTC)
Yeah, changes in the dynamics of life are definitely part of it for me, too. And I've long noticed in other people that as soon as LJ becomes a place only for Deep Thoughts or Important Things (which it tends to become when they're siphoning off their one-off, whimsical thoughts or whatever to some other place, like FB or Twitter), then their posts become fewer--how could they not! Suddenly there's a whole burden of this-needs-to-be-important weighing down the concept of posting. And maybe I'm feeling a bit of that now. But on the other hand, I do like coming here just to chat, too, so... yeah; it's complicated.
(no subject) - sovay - Mar. 25th, 2016 04:34 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Mar. 25th, 2016 04:41 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sovay - Mar. 25th, 2016 04:44 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Mar. 25th, 2016 04:53 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - khiemtran - Mar. 25th, 2016 05:56 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Mar. 25th, 2016 11:38 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - khiemtran - Mar. 25th, 2016 07:48 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Mar. 25th, 2016 04:51 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sovay - Mar. 25th, 2016 04:53 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Mar. 25th, 2016 04:59 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sovay - Mar. 25th, 2016 05:05 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Mar. 25th, 2016 05:08 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sovay - Mar. 25th, 2016 05:10 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Mar. 25th, 2016 05:12 am (UTC) - Expand
Mar. 24th, 2016 04:23 pm (UTC)
I think the posting problem is partly one of habit; I know that back when I posted every day, when it was just part of the day, it was easy to do. But a post that would have been quick and easy to write then sometimes seems insurmountable to start now, because I'm out of the habit.

I do love the picture of the snow left behind in the shadows of the lattice.
Mar. 24th, 2016 04:35 pm (UTC)
Habit does have a lot to do with it. And things change! Things change. I'd like to be more easygoing about it than I am. I need to keep reminding myself that just because how or how much I blog changes doesn't need to mean DOOM.

But yes, I have that feeling of insurmountability sometimes, and also, more self-consciousness than I ever used to feel. I never worried about something seeming dull or pedantic or oversharing or any of those types of things (not to say that I didn't choose not to post things in the past--of course I did--but it just felt way less self-conscious and self-judging).

Thanks! I liked the effect in that snow scene.
Mar. 24th, 2016 04:56 pm (UTC)
I always love your photos. I too struggle with posting -- in my case I always have to overcome the fact that, while I can organize a work of fiction into essentials, as opposed to Everything You Always Wanted to Know About This World, when recounting things that happened I never want to leave anything out and I cannot organize it.

I am so sorry about the artificial sweetener. I was always getting caught by that myself, for years; in the 1990's I think the problem was worse in Britain, which we were fortunate enough to visit several times. However, aspartame gives me migraines, so I've learned to read lists of ingredients all the time. It's astonishing what artificial sweeteners are in and how seldom they tell you. The company we order our groceries from has three kinds of bread-and-butter pickles -- two State Fair-winning recipes commercialized by a grand old pickle company, and the house brand. The house brand is much cheaper, so I took a look at the ingredients. And it had sucralose rather than sugar -- which is fine, but WHY NOT SAY SO IN LARGE FRIENDLY LETTERS. People who can't have sugar need to know too.

The cake looks amazing.

Mar. 25th, 2016 05:03 am (UTC)
Yes! I have a fear of talking too much--so then I end up saying hardly anything, and sometimes feeling dissatisfied with what I do say. I used to not care!

Ughh, the thought of bread-and-butter pickles contaminated by the taste of sucralose--that was what was in these strawberries! As you say, put it in big letters! Because the people who need it, really deserve to know. And those of us who want to avoid it really would like to know too.
Mar. 24th, 2016 05:13 pm (UTC)
I wish it weren't so hard for me to post now.

I'm glad you are still posting. I like the way you look at the world.
Mar. 25th, 2016 05:04 am (UTC)
Sometimes I have to wade through my own self to find that viewpoint these days. But it is still there.
(no subject) - sovay - Mar. 25th, 2016 05:07 am (UTC) - Expand
Mar. 24th, 2016 05:25 pm (UTC)
Pancake cake is a bit of an Italian thing!

It looks yummy.
Mar. 25th, 2016 05:04 am (UTC)
I didn't know that about it being an Italian thing! Cool.
Mar. 24th, 2016 07:10 pm (UTC)
You remind me that I need to look at our pussy willow! Though it won't happen today, because our great big bludgeoning indelicate snow. :D

And that is a fantastic idea for a cake. I think I'll make one for our Easter breakfast. Or maybe the weekend after--it will be better if I use Spectacular Cream From the Dairy.
Mar. 25th, 2016 05:06 am (UTC)
How much bludgeoning indelicate snow did you get?

We were supposed to have something tomorrow (today, now)--but then the forecast changed and now it will be rain.

And yay! I'm glad I've inspired something good for Easter.
Mar. 25th, 2016 05:34 am (UTC)
The pancake cake sounds awesome (minus the artificial sweetener, but sometimes it happens). I've always been an infrequent poster, but I find myself now with so much to talk about that writing it out seems daunting, even if I want to talk about it.
Mar. 25th, 2016 11:45 am (UTC)
I haven't done so much of the very in-depth personal LJ writing that you've done (though I like reading it, when it's from people I know, like you). The dynamic there must be somewhat different? (You'd have to confirm/deny/explain for me.) You post mainly locked, right? So you have to have developed a community of friends who you trust to (a) read and (b) respond in ways that aren't destructive. I like having a community of known friends, but I like the idea of my journal being open to all comers, too--but nowadays I think pretty much the only people who are reading are known friends. Which is very preferable to having no one read, or having just random strangers read! Absolutely. And I really, really like my online friends. There are people whom I've never met personally who I'm very close to. But it's a smaller world than it once was. I try to say that just as an observation, not as a lament, but the lament note does creep in.
(no subject) - danceswithwaves - Apr. 1st, 2016 04:12 am (UTC) - Expand
Mar. 26th, 2016 12:44 am (UTC)

The cake sounds awesome.

It was hard for me to continue posting after things kept happening personally and professionally. It was difficult to find the words.

Mar. 28th, 2016 04:43 pm (UTC)
In your case, there've been a surfeit of things :( It's hard when stuff gets heavy and doesn't let up.

The cake was very fun to make :-)
(Deleted comment)
Mar. 28th, 2016 04:44 pm (UTC)
I hope it turns out for you! It's very pretty to see all the layers made by the pancakes.
Mar. 28th, 2016 03:25 pm (UTC)
Beautiful photos. Thanks so much for sharing them and not letting them fade, forgotten on your camera.

And ick for the Lite crap, because, yeah, crap is what it is. :P
Mar. 28th, 2016 04:44 pm (UTC)
I made up for it by buying plain strawberries and cooking them up in water and SUGAR dammit. Sugar.
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