Sunday I decided that I'd check off one of the things on my goal list and cooked a recipe from one of my cookbooks. Sure I did make a few alterations to the recipe but the book provided the template from which I worked. I made a potato and leek soup and it was DELICIOUS! I was pleasantly surprised. It had a nice hot, spicy taste because I'd added a wee bit more pepper than intended but it really made it flavourful! I think I'll add an extra potato to the mix next time to make it a little bit thicker too. I could have added some cornstarch but I was happy enough with it just the way it turned out. :)
Since the leeks I bought only came in a bunch, I had two full stalks left over. I decided to look for a recipe that called for leeks so that I could actually use them up instead of having them go to waste. A co-worker of mine had pointed me to a good website for recipes (www.epicurious.com) and it had a search feature that allowed me to search by ingredient and dietary restriction. I keyed in "leek" and "vegetarian" and VOILA, a recipe of macaroni and cheese with leeks! I already had most of the ingredients so it was perfect! It took a while to prepare because I had to make a roux sauce (milk/butter/flour) from scratch but it turned out beautifully. I even had leftovers for work the next day.
I've also been trying to clean up and organize around the house. I've picked up a few little organization items (closet organizer, drawer organizer, etc) and re-used some abandonned items that I've collected from various places. I spent most of one evening workign on the bedroom and it has now become a place that I like going in to. There is no more clothing covered floor, there is ample shelving to organize things and I got myself a little stand to hang my beaded necklaces from. Mostly it's little things that go a long way.
The only downside to all of this is that my shoulder has been bothering me more lately. I'm doing a lot more physical activity that requires use of the muscles that are messed up and I'm noticing it. Ideally, they should get strengthened (at least, that's what my physiotherapist led me to understand) but until then I just keep icing the muscles and minimizing over-exerting. I have no intention to stop doing these things that I'm realizing make me feel so good about myself.
I'm remembering how much I enjoy cooking most of all and now that I'm not eating meat, it's even more exciting to find vegetarian meals that are delicious and fun. The old meat and potatoes meals just won't do anymore!