Sunday, June 27, 2010

Closing up shop...

at least for the Summer.

During my last week's silence I was suffering through a bout of stomach flu. I wasn't cooking; I was barely eating; and even thinking about food wasn't such a good idea. At this point, I'm starting to recover and while I'm certainly pleased to end the not-eating part, the not-cooking and not-thinking-about-food parts, I'm kind of digging.

I know I'm not entirely thinking straight right now. I still feel oogy considering anything other than small portions of bland ingredients, but I think there's some lasting appeal in not working in a 100 degree kitchen, not wrestling with an electric stove top, not using a mystery box of vegetables on a deadline, not researching novel recipes for the blog, and just not thinking about food all the time.

I'm curious what else I might do with my time. I've been doing the serious foodie thing for about three years now; writing the blog, reading others including the big national ones, looking up recipes, getting involved in the local food community, all that stuff. I'd like to dial it back a bit and try another hobby. And I think it's right here when the marketers have started noticing me that I need to make the decision of whether I'm going Pro-Am or backing away. I don't think I'm that committed. I have got a variety of other interests, you know.

I'm still signed up for the CSA this fall and I could easily see coming back to both cooking with it and blogging about it with some renewed enthusiasm, but I'd be surprised if I do the intensive week by week run-down again. I made so many dishes that I enjoyed but never made again because I was always chasing some new idea, not just for something to post, but because "the new" became an end in itself. Part of it was putting out ideas for other CSA members--and I did help a few stumped folks here and there--but now there's my archive and several other folks who have blogged about their CSAs so I don't think there's any real need to keep it up.

My original idea for this blog was just a place to show off some cool things I cooked and on-going ideas. I did a bit of that with ice cream, learning to bake and finding new ways to work with black sapotes and canistels, but it's taken a back seat to the on-going grind of the posting schedule. Once I've had a break, I'd like to come back to that.

I'd like to thank you all for reading. It has been gratifying to watch my audience grow even if it's been from zero to minuscule. I hope the blog's been interesting and useful for you. I may well be completely back to normal and posting again next week, but if I stick with this then there may be nothing here until October. If/when things gear up again here I'll let some other Miami food bloggers know and, if they care, they'll pass the news along.



M @ Betty Crapper said...

Feel better soon and think of it as a temporary hiatus.

Paula said...

I hope you return. Feel better!

rina said...

Hey Bill- Ugh, sorry about the stomach bug. I'll miss your blog (both for the food and the neologisms), but I understand completely. Keep in touch anyway!

LaDivaCucina said...

Hi Bill, hope you feel better, it IS hard to keep up the food blog grind, esp. if you are sick (I was on and off for six weeks! ugh!)

I put the blog to rest while I was on holiday and went to Australia for three weeks this past February. It gave me time to be in the NOW. I came back refreshed, full of ideas, photos, etc. Maybe you'll feel that way too...or not?! In any case, take care, I always thought your recipes to be unique and kudos to you for trying something new!

Karen said...

Bill - hope you feel well very soon, and also wish you "bon summer" -- you deserve a break after all that extensive work. I really hope the new season of "box" re-inspires you, but yes, there is more to life than blogging, and if it's a chore rather than a joy then it's no good.

Sarah C. said...

Hey Bill,

I've really enjoyed reading your blog since day one but can definitely understand that need to get away for an indefinite period of time.

Hope you are feeling better soon.

Again, kudos to all of the wonderful things you have put in the blog!


Anonymous said...

Loved your reliability, your enthusiasm for experimentation, and your willingness to be your own guinea pig! Totally sympathize with that burnt-out feeling. I get it every season when the markets and CSA and fairs are over. I just want to sit around chillin' - at least until it gets too painful to sit on my tush...
Enjoy your summer, relax, recuperate, and rethink (come the fall). In the meantime, we'll miss you!

billjac said...

Thanks guys. I really appreciate the compliments.

I have this awful urge to start a blog to record my new non-blogging lifestyle. I think that means its in my blood now and I'll be back writing once I've got over the tired-of-cooking thing.

Marian said...

Get better soon! When your body feels better, your mental balance will return. Take a break if you need to. Then, when the CSA season resumes, you'll have fresh ideas on how and what you want to blog about.

I've also been feeling kind of burned out after the relentless pace of blogging about the CSA and related topics. So, I'm slowing down, pacing myself. There's more to come, but not as much or not as often. And a summertime blog-nap sounds mighty good too!

June said...

Bill, I can absolutely relate. I took a long break when my son was born because even though I was cooking some of our meals, I just didn't have the mental capacity at that point to really think this hard about food. It wasn't until the CSA season started last year that I got back into blogging seriously.

That said, I have a backlog simply because I'm occupied with other things. Even though I'm back, it's nowhere near as intense as before I took my break. I'm convinced my blog and my obsession with cooking new things to post about contributed to a huge weight gain. Sometimes you really gotta weigh your options and decide if something is truly worth all the strings it has attached.

I hope you have fully recovered from the stomach bug!

June said...

Goodness, that first paragraph is some run on sentence!

billjac said...

Yep, I'm feeling much better now; thanks.

I'm convinced the CSA and blog were the primary cause of some serious weight gain on my part too. Part of it was just getting really hungry while cooking something complicated on a weeknight and not getting to eat until 9. Grabbing something simple when the pain in my stomach (I still haven't gotten back to feeling anything clearly identifiable as hunger) gets distracting seems to be a good approach to keep serving sizes down.

I'm curious how I'll feel when CSA-time rolls around again, though.