5 Things Recommended - 4/30/2019

1. I don’t usually recommend TV shows.  But Netflix has created an intriguing cooking program called, Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat; the brain child of Samin Nosrat.  Her cookbook of the same name can be read from cover to cover (which I did).  Aside from the actual recipes, is important, useful information that can make you a better cook.  For instance, who knew that salting your meat (heavily) when it came home from the butcher and leaving it for 24 hours before cooking it would result in a more tender, flavorful dish.  Maybe you knew this but I did not.  Also, having an acid component (citrus, wine, vinegar) in a dish gives it balance.  Nosrat is unashamedly in love with food and feeding delicious varieties of it to the people she loves.  It’s a breath of fresh air to see her delighting in the colors and smells of real food.  No low-fat anything here.  No apologies for enjoying eating.  You can find out more about this delightful, exuberant woman and her buttermilk roast chicken at:saltfatacidheat.com


2. You-Tube I love you.  I am from the age of Encyclopedia Britannica.  So, it doesn’t immediately occur to me that information about almost anything is out there, for free, available at my finger-tips.  Recently, my husband gave me a grown-up camera with different lenses.  I was delighted until I actually wanted to use it.  I sort of freaked out and decided that I had to send it back and then hide in the closet so no one would know what I didn’t know.  Luckily, my son’s girlfriend, cheerfully reminded me that this vital information was only the ethernet away.  Kudos to the ethernet and to her.  Now that there are actual pics on the camera, I’m going back on You-Tube today to find out how to get them off.


3. Are you dreading having a difficult conversation?   Executive Coach, Dick Eaton, introduced me to a great tool developed by the Center for Creative Leadership (www.ccl.org).  Planning ahead is the idea.  Here’s a quick summary:

1. Start by setting your intention: What do you want him/her to know? What do you want them to feel? What action(s) do I want to come out of this for them and me?

2. Next, think about behavior: What do I want to say? How do I want to say it? Posture? Tone? Attitude? Energy?  Think about how your partner might react.  Roleplay the conversation.

3. Have the conversation

4. Following the conversation check-in with your partner and yourself. Consider your impact: Did I meet my intentions? Where is your partner? Are there places that still lack clarity?

You can watch Dick go through the process at:


Information about Dick Eaton and his incredible coaching program is available at: http://www.leapfroginnovations.com/about/ourTeam.htm


4. On a more sober note, if you haven’t ever read Man’s Search For Meaningby Viktor Frankl or even if you have, read it!  I just pulled my dog-eared copy off the shelf again.  As someone who struggles with finding my ground when difficult external situations are beyond my control I find his words to be a deeply rich primmer on the spiritual practice of what I call “radical serenity”.

Frankl’s memoir of his three years in a Nazi death camp and his subsequent formulation of “Logotherapy” stresses our freedom to transcend suffering and find meaning regardless of our circumstances by choosing how we respond to that suffering.  Of course any of my struggles can’t compare to his or the other millions who died so horrifically. But his words of advice and comfort resonate in my daily-life as well as in how I respond to our current social/political times.  Frankl says; 

“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves…Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” 

 5. Go for a walk! I am so glad that spring is here!  It always seems like an amazing miracle that the snow melts and the plants remember how to grow green again. Being out in nature, especially early in the morning, is clearing my head. It’s a good opportunity to let thoughts and feelings that have been simmering work themselves out. I’m finding I’m more relaxed and especially grateful. 

Mason Gehring