life imitates food, or food imitates life

by Stacy

Have you had those times when you wake up each morning and just think, “Ok Life, what have you got for me today?” The past few months have been like that for me. On balance, my outlook is positive; each uncertainty on its own isn’t that bad, but as they pile on top of one another it gets more challenging to keep perspective.

Each time I felt ready to post some of the craziness going on, life got even crazier. As I was sorting through photos to edit for posts, I realized that there was an ironic connection between life and the cake I just made.

upside down cake

The cake looks smooth and golden on the surface, but how did it actually turn out? You mix all the ingredients together and put the cake in the oven hoping that chemistry is on your side. You still have to wait to see if everything came together.

I’m actually going to put the recipe in a separate post, that’s how much craziness I have to get through.
In semi-chronological order, here goes.

dad at cabrillo

This is my dad. Hi, Dad! (He reads my blog.) He came out to San Diego to visit in mid-April which is when I took this picture of him at Cabrillo National Monument.

After he got back from his visit, he fell ill. In June he was diagnosed with Stage IV prostate cancer which means it has metastasized into his bones. That’s the bad news.

The good news is that it’s treatable. He’s responding well and feeling a thousand times better now than he did a month ago. He likes his doctor and his test results are improving.

His doctor said not to sit at home throwing a pity party and recommended going out and doing things Dad wanted to do. And he did. He and my mom (and my godparents) just got back from a week-long cruise to Alaska! Before they left I had a chance to spend some time with my parents in Minnesota since I was already back for a wedding, which was great (both the wedding and the visit).


Since moving almost a year ago, I’ve been back five times — four weddings and Thanksgiving. My husband has only been back three times and missed this last trip because it was too much time to take off work.

So imagine my surprise when he called me on my trip to say that he quit his job — the job we moved to California for in the first place and the reason he had stayed behind this time.

It wasn’t a total shock. He hadn’t been thrilled with the situation and had started to look for new opportunities, but this was a bit earlier than he had planned. As in he had hoped to have a new job before leaving the old one. He’s looking.

The upside to him being unemployed is that I actually get to spend some time with him! Or I did.

a walk on the beach

Especially if you’re a new reader (hi, new readers!) you might not know that I haven’t worked much since we moved to California. A few short stints, but nothing substantial. I’m a stage manager for theatrical productions — that’s what my college degree is in and what I was doing when we left Minnesota. It’s also a really difficult field to break into in a new city where I don’t know anyone.

There’s a large theater where I had an informational interview in January. They called to offer me a position two days ago. I start tomorrow at 10:00am.

I’m not comfortable talking about work here so there isn’t much to say other than it’s a really great opportunity for me and it’s going to be a really interesting transition to go from mostly-unemployed to working six days a week (a normal theater schedule except with Sundays off).

It’s a big change with little time to transition. It’s like life is flipping upside down.

rhubarb upside down cake

…Not unlike my cake.

For once I actually have a small stash of content that I haven’t posted, so while I probably won’t be updating as often, I’m not going to disappear either. We still get our CSA share every other week, and New Food Friday will roll around every seven days. It’s a temporary position so I’ll be back soon. Maybe my husband will even write a post while I’m working.

Or you could! If you have a recipe or write up you think fits my blog, email me and I’ll see what I can do.

The next few months hold a lot of uncertainty, but I have high hopes. I wasn’t sure about the cake, either, but it turned out great. My health coaching program had a lecture that recommends replacing the word “nervous” with “excited.” I’m definitely excited.

What are you excited about these days (other than this cake recipe, which you should be pumped for)?

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{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

tater1112 July 26, 2010 at 8:56 pm

Reid was excited about the cake picture. At least, he was excited when he was looking over my shoulder and thought it was something involving lots of ham. He got less interested after I told him that it probably wasn’t ham, since a) you don’t eat ham and b) it’s a cake.


Stacy July 26, 2010 at 9:21 pm

You are correct on both counts. Sorry to disappoint, Reid!


Erika July 26, 2010 at 9:23 pm

Oh my! I knew everything but the dad part! I’m so sorry for all that chaos, but I love love love the “excited” instead of “nervous” suggestion. It kind of automatically puts a positive spin on things that could seem scary. We’re thinking of you guys and missing you! :)


Jackie July 27, 2010 at 12:21 am

I love this post. I’m happy to see that your dad is doing well and just went on a cruise! Awesome!

That cake looks yummy, excited for the recipe!! Good luck getting back into the work groove. :)

Again, it was great meeting you yesterday!!


Jennifer July 27, 2010 at 5:53 am

Congrats on the job!

…and thanks to these photos all I can think about is cake. mmmmcake.


TreeHugginMomma July 27, 2010 at 6:31 am

Congrats on the JOB! Whoo Hoooo!


susan from food blogga July 27, 2010 at 6:36 am

I think once you hit puberty, you start asking that question every day. 😉


susan from food blogga July 27, 2010 at 6:37 am

Whoops. I forgot to say, Congratulations! You’ll be wonderful!


Christie {Honoring Health} July 27, 2010 at 6:47 am

Congrats on the job! I will surely miss our four hour skypes while you are working.


Hodge Podge July 27, 2010 at 6:57 am

Thanks for sharing your ups and downs. Sometimes it’s hard to get into the really personal stuff with strangers. Glad to hear that your dad’s health is improving. And glad to hear that the stars were aligned to offer your work while your husband looks for a new job.


Kimberly July 27, 2010 at 7:46 am

I didn’t know about Anderson, but good luck to both of you as he finds something new. I’m also glad to hear the good news about your dad! Go get ’em slugger


Naomi July 27, 2010 at 8:10 am

Some day you will publish a book. Keep writing. The caliber of Like Water for Chocolate shot through my head reading this. I am “excited” for you and send best wishes.


Rosann July 27, 2010 at 9:33 am

Honest, fresh and creative–that’s what I like about your blog. You are so talented! You take the down side UP!

Best wishes to you, Anderson, and your dad,

from Iowa with love


Bridget July 27, 2010 at 9:43 am

Stacy! Congratulations on the job! I hope your husband finds something soon too. I’m sorry to hear about your dad.

I’ve had my share of crazy uncertain stressful “exciting” times too. It’s always harder, but usually, overall, it’s better than the too-quiet times. You can do it!


Mimi July 27, 2010 at 5:34 pm

I am so sorry to hear about your Dad. I am sending him good vibes so that he’ll get better!!

Congratulations on your job. I hope you love it. Will you still have time for health coaching?

Bummer about the reduced income, but if your hubby ends up happier in the long run, that is good.

You have a lot of challenges right now. Stay positive!!


Karin July 28, 2010 at 9:47 pm

Well said, Naomi and Rosann! I know you’ll bring a lot to your new team, and I hope that you still have a little time to keep on cooking and writing.

We’re thinking of you and send lots of love!


katya July 29, 2010 at 8:20 pm

wow, apparently I’ve missed a lot of goings on… sorry it’s been so crazy for you — but yay that you have a new job and your dad is feeling better!

Please tell Anderson hi from me also… does he make you dinners now???

I wish you both all the best.


Mara July 30, 2010 at 10:16 am

Congrats on the job, Stacy! Sorry to hear about your dad. Hope there are exciting changes abreast for Anderson… keep us posted. By the way, your blog is supercool. :) Hope to see you guys soon.



Ashley July 30, 2010 at 8:48 pm

Congrats on your job! I totally know what you mean about taking 1 day at a time, waiting to see what “life” has in store today! It’s been a rollercoaster for sure. I’m SO glad your dad is doing better. That is great news. Lovely photo of you and your husband! Take it easy girl!


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