Habits. Habits are everywhere. You and I are hopelessly bound to them. We cannot resist them. We take comfort in the ritual of them. We admonish the addiction of them. It’s a love/hate sort of relationship we have with habits.
Year after year, time and time again we do the same things over and over. If someone showed me a chart of my life (they’d be revealing their creepy hobby of charting other people’s lives) I’d be pretty horrified to see which activities I spend most of my time doing (cute animals + YouTube = irresistible). Even still, I’ve put a lot of time and effort into change and growth, or at least, I think I have. It feels important to me to not get stuck in life. Actually, it scares the pants off me to look back on my life and feel like nothing’s changed.
Now, I think most would agree when I say that habits and behavior related to family are the worst. No matter how much I think I’ve grown up and changed, I always turn into the misunderstood bratty teenager around my family. I sit and watch myself go from (relatively) logical to utterly irrational. Fully aware of what is happening, I’m somehow incapable of preventing my transformation to She-Hulk.
Last weekend, my brother, sister-in-law and a few family friends came to celebrate my new nephew’s naming ceremony. Baby Amos Ramana was, in part, named after my late father who passed tragically just last year. I was moved to tears when my father’s memory was honored during the ceremony, which was short and sweet, but the festivities that followed were full of celebratory vibes. The weekend itself was stressful. So many family members falling into their old patterns and habits created enough anxiety for all to share. The next day, we all walked up Mount Lebanon to the retreat area. Our destination was The Bridge to Nowhere, a short, suspended bridge that leads….well, to nowhere. It ends abruptly in mid air and the walker is forced to a shaky stop. The idea behind the bridge is reflective. “You can go no further. Either stop, or find another way” is what goes on in my head when I am on that bridge. And so, I must find another way.
Taking family for granted is a bad habit of mine. I have come to realize that I cannot afford to do that anymore. Things don’t always end up the way I think they will and my family won’t always be around for me to finally work out my issues. So, I’ve gotta just suck it up and find another way around my habits. Change my patterns.
Beets are the inspiration behind this post. They are very plentiful right now, so I’ve spent a lot of time looking at and preparing them. Their patterns are insightful. I am trying to let the wisdom of beets guide me through this challenging journey. I made some very simple and simply delicious roasted beetroots. Do enjoy.
Roasted Beetroot Fries
- 3-4 of your favorite sort of beets
- Cooking oil
- ½ tsp coriander powder
- ½ tsp ginger powder
- ½ tsp allspice
- ½ tsp cumin seeds
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven at 400ºF/200ºC/Gas mark 6. Cut the ends off the beets and peel them. Slice the beets into chunky wedges and place in a large bowl.
- Add cooking oil and all the spices.
- Mix with your hands (it works best) making sure that the oil and spices are evenly distributed.
- Spread the wedges on baking sheets or pans. TIP: If you want your fries to get crispy (recommended!), give them plenty of space. If beets are too crowded they will release juices and start to get soggy. This may require the use of several pans.
- Bake for 30-45 minutes (convection ovens will take less time).
- When they are crispy on the edges and soft to the touch take them out.