I’m turning 26 next month…which I can’t help but notice puts me closer to 30 than to 20. I feel like this something I should be worried about. Perhaps something I dread. But the truth of the matter is that I l take pride in my age. I think of it as validation that I’m maturing. People think, “Oh, she’s how old? She must have certain aspects of her life figured out.” I had certain things figured out when I was 21 too, but if a stranger heard my age they would ask me how the bar scene was, with this grin like I was secretly a coyote-ugly girl. No thanks, I’ll take 26. The downside of this age-specific maturity is that I sometimes worry that I don’t have enough of my life figured out. Like, I always thought I’d have a family by the time I was 30. My mom had me when she was only 23.
That always seemed a little young but I definitely assumed I’d get my act together sometime within the following 7 YEARS. It doesn’t look like that’s going to happen. Whatever have I been doing that has caused me to deviate from the master life plan? I’ve traveled a bunch. I’ve seen a good amount of the U.S., been to Europe a handful of times, and spent half a year in Africa. I’m also getting close to finishing up grad school and I think I know what I want to do with my life, career-wise.
What makes me feel most accomplished though, is that I finally I know what kind of balance I need in my life to happy. For me, it’s a mix of good food, physical and mental activity, being a part of a community, spending time in nature, and finding new ways to express myself. The right balance leaves me energized and inspired and just…happily me.
I intended this post to be about zucchini bread. THE BEST zucchini bread. Reflecting on getting older came from me finally feeling like I’ve had enough experience in life to deem certain things “The Best.” I recognize there are still a ton of topics I can’t properly speak on, but at least when it comes to baked goods I sort of know what I’m talking about. This zucch bread definitely isn’t the kind mom makes. We’ve adding curry and candied ginger here, people. This isn’t the first recipe I’ve tried. Getting into baking/cooking over the past few years has sent me on a quest to discover my own Favorites. The classics I’m actually going to write down on little cards. Maybe someday I’ll make this quick bread for my family but for now I’ll eat a whole loaf myself and pawn the rest off on people at school. I’m 25.85 years old and that’s how I do. This delicious recipe comes from Heidi Swanson of 101 Cookbooks. The temperature dropped in to the 60’s this weekend, which immediately got me in the mood for fall, so I added a teaspoon of ginger powder and a few cranks of black pepper to make it more of a spice bread. You can find the recipe here.