when the mood swings come a-knockin'

I'm sorry. I'm sorry I'm posting about yet ANOTHER smoothie recipe, but I can't stop.And I have a good reason. 

At times, maybe while running on the treadmill or when I'm murdering my hair with the straightener, I start connecting weird thoughts and sentences. Sometimes these moods instill a feeling of fear, sometimes they trigger beautiful clauses that  I instantly tap into my iPhone's notepad. Melancholic seems too sad. Ambivalence implies something more distraught. I feel at peace, while simultaneously a little useless, and pensive.  

It's almost the sensation of walking on a tightrope. Weirdly balanced, but acknowledging the fall. Seeing the other side. Seeing the hard work it demands. It makes me want to lay on my back and collect golden teardrops in my palms. 

I hang out in these places. Feel the feels. Wonder if it's due to menstruation (about one fourth of the time, it is. And if you are grossed out by reading that, go slap yourself with a car. Kidding. But seriously. If men can talk about the shape of their poops then I'm allowed to bring up PMS.) Once that's all over and done with, I instantly try to think of a remedy, form of comfort, or at least something useful so I don't sit in my brain like a hottub of chocolate pudding. (Hottub of chocolate pudding. OMG.)

And I have found a wonderful solution.

Matcha green tea powder. (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) 

If green tea is the mood-boosting, metabolism-ass-kicking tomboy little sister, Matcha is the matriarch of all things green and delicious. She is Red in Orange is the New Black (**SPOILER**) before all that kitchen shit went down. She is Heisenberg.  She is Beyoncé singing Drunk in Love at the Grammy's. If there was a fictional movie about this stuff, Chloe Moretz would play regular green tea and Meryl Streep would play Matcha.  And then somewhere, Steve Martin would pop up as some trippy herbal shit, and chaos would ensue. 

The point is, this stuff is legit. It gives you clean energy, as well as a natural sense of balanced euphoria. It makes the road seem a little bit easier, especially when the road is pretty damn expensive, and you're planning an eight-day road trip on a post grad's budget. The leaves are grown solely in Japan, and then are powdered down into a fine heap of green dust. You can mix with water, milk, or use it as an ingredient in smoothies (!!), cookies, cakes, or anything else. At a writer's conference last Spring, we ate it in the form of ice cream out of white chocolate graham cones.  I would like try a matcha tiramisu, though this might be the last thing I do ever, because I'm sure the ecstasy from such a treat would launch me into a blissful, and somehow weirdly productive, coma. 

Image

Kale and Matcha Green Smoothie

½ cup greek yogurt (I like vanilla for this recipe)

1 cup ice

½ orange juice

1 tbs. matcha green tea powder

half a frozen banana

2 bunches of kale, leaves torn

spurtle of whip cream (optional, but not to meeee.)

 Combine in a blender or VitaMix and blend blend blend!!!

There are so many variations on this so I don’t know if this can be improved, I’m sure it can. I may try adding mangoes, or swapping in almond milk. It’s great pre or post-workout, or all on it’s own. 

nourishing the body

Image There is a play I love. It’s called “Melancholy Play” and it’s by Sarah Ruhl. Ms. Ruhl writes very whimsical things, beautiful things; things that I would like to collect in a wicker-basket of words and take on a picnic along a Northeastern beach.  Maybe we would eat lobster rolls.

In this play, the main character, Tilly suffers from constantly feeling melancholic. She falls in love with a woman who writes obituaries, and then she turns into an almond.

“Do you ever have the feeling, when you wake up in the morning, that you’re in love but you don’t know with what?

-Tilly, in Melancholy Play

I’ve recently boarded the almond train. I like almond butter, I like raw almonds,  I like almond milk.  They’re all quite versatile, and provide different yummy satisfactions.  And they’re good for you?!?!

Healthy food gets a bad rep. I think this is because healthy eating often seems boring, or like you aren’t “living your life to the fullest” when you turn down donuts in favors of a breakfast smoothie.  (Don’t get me wrong. I love donuts. My favorite is the ultra-unhealthy, saturated fat laden, vanilla with rainbow sprinkles.) But lets not neglect the breakfast smoothie. It’s over there, waving its little blueberry arms, yelling “HEY I TASTE GOOD TOO, OKAY?”

While one type of food nourishes the soul (microwave nachos, I’m looking at you), the other nourishes the body. Like almonds.

Nourishing the body is so important. I don't think eating healthy foods makes me boring.  No, like a nude photograph of David Bowie, it makes me feel alive. It even sometimes makes feel like a beach dancer with a hula-hoop and the enthusiasm to climb a coconut tree.  The taste of raw almond butter comforts me, and yet I don’t fall into a food coma shortly after indulging in its bliss.

I like almonds in Sarah Ruhl plays. I like them plain, and maybe with a bit of salt.

I like almond butter stirred into my oatmeal, making little tidal waves throughout the creamy oats.

And I really really love love love almond milk in my smoothies.

Espresso Breakfast Smoothie

½ cup greek yogurt

1½ cup ice

½ almond milk

1 tbs. cocoa powder or carob powder.

1 shot of espresso

1 large banana

1 tsp. vanilla paste

1 packet of stevia

(I use stevia because I use unsweetened chocolate, yogurt, and almond milk. If any of these ingredients are already sweet, you probably don't need the stevia at all. Or you could use honey. I like things sweet, because part of me is still a child who mixes Lucky Charms and Cinnamon Toast Crunch and Kettle Corn and calls it dinner.)

Blend everything together in a VitaMix or blender. Taste and adjust if needed; smoothies are personal things! Some people like them icy, some prefer smooth.  This makes one medium sized drink, perfect for one.

Enjoy with David Bowie music and then go dance in a pair of knee high socks.