Easter is traditionally a holiday celebrated with family. But this year, I’m in Colorado, my mom and brother are in Kansas, and my dad is in southern Germany on sabbatical. Instead, I enjoyed a few lovely holiday festivities with good friends after what has felt like a very long week. Productive, but long.
Whenever I write these Week in Review posts, I think about what I did on Monday and wonder, “Was that only a week ago?”
- Tuesday night, I had a piece up for workshop. I tried my hand at literary journalism, something I dabbled in as an undergraduate, but never to the same extent as what our professor assigned this semester. For the piece, I attended and observed the meeting of a local branch of the weight-loss organization TOPS. It was pretty uncomfortable for me: the organization measures everyone’s weight to a quarter pound and keeps them accountable to it every single week. It was one of those interesting pieces that went in a really different direction than I anticipated it would. I was expecting it to be a reflection on the past, telling the story of my own disordered eating in relationship to a larger culture in which so many men and women are taught how to starve themselves. But it ended up being more about my current position in the world, how I want to use my story to maybe, hopefully, help others get out of that awful place of fear and self-denial. My classmates were really encouraging–several said they thought it was the strongest piece I’ve submitted to workshop so far this year!
- Monday and Tuesday were beautiful, sunny, 70 degree days…and Wednesday we woke up to this. School was out in the great state of Colorado. Because that’s how Spring is…temperamental. Since my classes were cancelled, the students missed their scheduled research instruction with the library, which meant a lot of rescheduling for me. Not a big deal. The snow day also meant, however, that swing dance was cancelled. ?
- I also tried re-introducing wheat for a second time this week. I had gotten some nausea symptoms after trying some French toast with my folks over spring break, but that’s so different than my usual bloated symptoms that I thought it might be a fluke. Thursday, though, I felt super-queasy again. In fact, I almost wasn’t sure I could make it to class. The bagel I attempted for Wednesday breakfast might be to blame. Ironic that I felt so cruddy on Thursday, since just that morning first thing I had posted about how re-introducing wheat seemed to have gone okay.
- Over the weekend, I finished grading my student’s second major assignment, although it took two days longer than anticipated.
- And when I wasn’t doing that, I was a social butterfly at all of the Easter festivities! Specifically, on Friday night, a few of my swing dance friends hosted a cocktail party. It was a lot of fun, with cute cocktail dresses, an Easter egg hunt, blues dancing, and lots of good food and drinks. I tried modifying an artichoke dip recipe by subbing in spaghetti squash to make it low-FODMAP, and it was a huge hit! All night, people were telling me how much they loved it. Of course! The secret ingredient–mayonnaise. (Makes everything better.)
- Easter Sunday, my friend Dana hosted a few of us in the English department for a lovely Easter morning brunch. The hostess even kindly made some onion- and garlic-free potatoes for me! Dana’s dog, Dozer, is adorable.
And here’s the recipe for my big hit artichoke-free artichoke dip (with spaghetti squash)! Great for a cocktail party and FODMAP friendly!
- 1 medium spaghetti squash
- 1 10-oz package of chopped frozen spinach, thawed and drained
- 1/2 cup chopped green onions
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 cup grated Parmesan
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Cut the spaghetti squash in half lengthwise. Remove the seeds and membranes. Place cut-side-down on a baking sheet or pan and bake for 45 minutes, until the squash flesh easily comes apart into noodle-like strands with pierced with a fork.
- Remove the squash flesh and place in a large bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly. (I recommend using two forks to do so.)
- Spray a large pie plate or small-medium casserole dish with cooking spray. Spoon the spaghetti squash mixture into the dish and bake 20 to 25 minutes, until hot.
- Serve warm with crackers or chips.