1.30.14 – Grocery Scouting

January 30, 2014

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I have a soft spot in my heart for the Gourmet Garage on 96th and Park Avenue, which is a little bit bizarre because like most NYC groceries, it’s smallish, over-priced and almost never has everything you might have on your grocery list.  When I was pregnant with Alex it was the closest grocery store to our apartment on 91st street and as my pregnancy and the winter progressed my weekly Trader Joe’s runs became harder and harder and than stopped altogether. It seemed that every couple of days,  I’d bundle up and walk up to the Gourmet Garage and get a rotisserie chicken, some spinach and a pint of vanilla Haagen Dazs ice cream.  They play a nice mix of oldies and new pop and I loved to just drift along to the music, looking at the caviar and blintzes, the pastel striped raviolis, the coffee and nuts aisle before heading back home.

One of the things I’ve been working on the last couple of years, with mixed success, is enjoying wherever I am, whatever I’m doing —  my work, my subway ride, the grocery shopping, or changing diapers (back when I did that!) because somewhere along the line I realized these things are what make up the bulk of my life, so I’d better find a way to enjoy them, or enjoy more of them. Which sounds overly simplistic, and some part of me wants to roll her eyes, even as I type this, and say how could that possibly work in real life but the truest thing is sometimes (not always of course) it really does work.  Like tonight at Gourmet Garage, time slowed down as I pushed my basket mounted cart through the aisles, listening to the Rolling Stones, with the bright green pestos, creamy fresh pastas, soft pinks of prosciutto, salami, and hams all making me think of spring.  I was 100 percent in my body, relaxed and present. It wasn’t my whole day, it wasn’t my whole week, but, for 15 minutes today I was all of those things and it was enough.

In grocery scouting news I also picked up a small wedge of Midnight Moon Goat Milk Gouda, which was earthy and rich when I got it home and devoured it on some crisp crackers with a side of salami and red wine. I had a vision of spring grass and social goats cavorting. Delicious and highly recommended (you can buy a huge wheel online, but I think Whole Food caries smaller wedges, too).

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Kate January 31, 2014 at 12:21 am

I love this post so much I wish I could hug you. Thank you for such a beautiful reflection on the everyday. I am flagging this to read again and again.

Lindsay January 31, 2014 at 9:05 am

Apparently you’re in my head bc you just described my perfect meal. And yes, why shouldn’t we all pay closer attention and just enjoy good moments? Thanks for the reminder. Sweating the small stuff distracts from the happy little moments that are everywhere.

Traci January 31, 2014 at 10:04 am

I. LOVE. GOAT. GOUDA. Such a happy moment is spent eating that cheese.

Angela January 31, 2014 at 12:16 pm

I am with Kate. This post really made my day. I really need to start doing that also. There is so much mundane stuff that needs to be done in life that you might as well not fight it and make it a little fun to deal with.

Jennifer January 31, 2014 at 3:23 pm

I also really loved this post. And I am enjoying your new blog format! It is great to hear from you more regularly.

Tokyo Jinja January 31, 2014 at 3:59 pm

I’m kind of in two minds about the whole mindfulness thing. I too have been trying to be present, especially with my elder daughter, who – egads – has only 3 1/2 more years at home. But it has become so trendy too that I almost feel pressure about it, do you know what I mean? That said, I find Instagram and your new blog format so satisfying for the way it focusses in on something really specific and pleasurable, whether it be an experience or an image. Anyway, I’m starting to wax, which means it is bedtime here.

Abbey January 31, 2014 at 4:04 pm

Kate, Lindsey, Angela and Jennifer, thank you so much for your lovely comments! They mean so much to me and I really appreciate it more than I can say.

Abbey January 31, 2014 at 4:06 pm

Tokyo Jinja, I totally understand what you mean about the pressure of mindfulness. I try not to think of that word at all actually, with all of its pressures that can turn into a kind of meanness to yourself (“oh my god how can I be so NOT present, so completely NOT mindful, I suck!”) and rather, I try to just ENJOY myself and figure that the mindfulness will follow (or not!) but at least I’m enjoying my grocery shopping, diaper changing, trash taking out, etc etc etc).

Wendy January 31, 2014 at 11:16 pm

Great post and great advice….life as you know it is always changing (if that makes sense) and I think one has to really focus to hold on to the memory of these moments. Especially true with young kids in the household.

Becca February 5, 2014 at 3:44 pm

Hi Abbey! I’ve been a fan of your blog for ages, and I work for Applegate. So glad to see you enjoying our salami 🙂 Nice pairing too!

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