Gothic Granola

Category Archives: Mental Health

Aut facere aut mori | Spritz Cookies

Welcome back, all five of you who read GG: did you notice that things have changed?

The new motto is “aut facere aut mori,” which I translate from Latin to English as “make or die” or “do or die.” 

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Witchy Birthday Dried Blood Red Velvet Cake

The old woman nodded as she listened to the soft, bubbling words [of the spirit of the well].  Then she went back to the cottage, her eyes bright with resolve, her step firm with courage.

She took water from the sieve and sprinkled it over the doorstep.  When she got inside she saw a cake, dark reddish brown and unappetizing to look at, on the table.  ‘They didn’t even wait for me to come back with the water,’ she said to herself.  ‘They were greedy as well as wicked.  But thanks to the spirit of the well I know what is in that cake.’

Geoffry Palmer and Noel Lloyd, “The Horned Witches,” Nine Witch Tales, ed. Abby Kedabra (New York: Scholastic Book Services, 1998), 13.

There were a few magical things about this cake I baked for my birthday: I still had the book from which the above quote is excerpted and the cake actually worked this time.

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Cream Cheeze Cutouts

I did it.  Finally, I have made vegan and gluten-free version of Cream Cheese Cutouts that tastes good, rolls properly, and bakes up soft and slightly puffy, just like I remembered.  Why the spelling differences?  Mine are Cream Cheeze Cutouts due to fake animal products; Ownie Mom’s are Cream Cheese Cutouts, since hers are traditional wheat flour, egg, and dairy, etc.

cream cheeze cutouts cookies vegan gluten-free | gothic granola

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Sweet Potato Pie, Version 2, Other Baked Goods, and Reflection

A fully cooked sweet potato pie!

For once I didn’t eat plain leftover roasted sweet potatoes. Instead, I baked with them and made a sweet potato pie.  I’m not Southern, so I made a maple-sweetened pumpkin pie with sweet potatoes instead of pumpkin and 1/4 cup of maple syrup instead of organic sugar.  Besides being out of organic sugar and coconut sugar, I’m running low on “white” flours; I used half buckwheat flour in the crust recipe from this pecan pie post.

sweet potato pie buckwheat crust vegan gluten-free | gothic granola

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Negative Positive | Sourdough Carrot Cake

My dear cousin K8 (@akateisakate) forwarded me three Brene Brown TEDx talks today and they were probably the most valuable audio I heard all day. Vulnerability and Critics and Shame

Go, listen. I’ll be here when you get back, with hankies.

My takeaway from her talks? “The people who have a strong sense of love and belonging believe they’re worthy of love and belonging….[T]he one thing that keeps us out of connection is our fear that we’re not worthy of connection.” 


All the not-living-up-to-my-potential situations, abusive so-called “friends,” spiritual and social disconnection, bulimia relapse, and feelings that I don’t deserve success over the last year and five months boil down to a feeling of lack of worthiness. Take that, supposed millennial and white upper middle class entitlement mentality! 

Of course, if you’re going to talk about problems, talk about solutions. My first step was to craft affirmations for my Morning Pages and mantras for my meditation to help rebuild my sense of worthiness of health and contentment, taking inspiration from Brene Brown. 

I am enough. 
My vulnerability makes me beautiful. 
I have the courage to be imperfect. 
I am letting go of what I thought I should be in order to be who I am.


And I am gonna mindfully eat some delicious, dense, VGF sourdough carrot cake while I cultivate compassion for myself! I ran out of teff flour and it’s difficult to come by in the DMV (et tu, Whole Foods Markets?!). I began using amaranth flour and will probably switch to millet once I’m out of amaranth. By all means, use whatever GF flour sourdough starter you have available; it’s but a slight matter of taste and leavening.

Sourdough Carrot Cake

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Toeing the Fine Line | Lemon Cheezecake Buns

Call me biased and call me teetering on the fine edge of victim-blaming, but really, one can choose not to be offended in this fairly innocuous trend: #fitfam and the public celebration of physical fitness.


I read this Elite Daily article and wanted to post my meal-prepped box of lunches all the more (Then I stopped posting. More on that later). FitFam is about working towards goals that have to do with physical fitness: for improved health, for better quality of healthy life, for competitions, for improved physical appearance. 



I can do yoooooga!

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Work to Capacity | Article Review

And not over it all the blessed time. 

Bunch of articles to review this week, folks.

Long-range, big-picture thinking is an attribute some employers prize in employees. Besides being valuable for planning effectively and acting strategically, such a mindset also helps people better self-regulate. What I particularly took away feom this article was the last bit about prioritizing sleep/rest/turning off if what you’re doing is not going to matter in ten years.

Another list, which may indicate you need to see list no. 1.

CTFO, mate. I am guilty of all of the things on this list. I used to do homework during family events. Now I overeat and isolate, but that is another probably related issue, some kind of workaholism.

Healthy eating and living taking precedence at home is all well and good and I endorse this. Healthy eating without sufficient education (label-reading, why it’s important, et cetera) can sometimes have the negative backlash effect of kids eating all the junk foods once let off the leash.

No shit. My depression hit before, during, and then just dropped off the cliff after senior year of high school, a year when I averaged about 5 hours a night. When I did the same nonsense this past six months, I got the same results. Hence, article number one. Sleep helps the body repair tissues, for one. For two, dreams influence my decisions, and making sure I have sufficient time and depth of sleep to dream makes me a better decison-maker. 

The following article examines why teens are so stressed. Given that my teen years were only four years ago (I’m 23), I am not surprised. A five on the AP Biology exam got me out of one lab course at Princeton. The AP courses prepared me for workload and intensity of a college course, but otherwise they had little added value. The rest of my AP credits did not carry over to PU. Point being, the elite universities want to see you slave away in high school, but they’re not going to give you a fair return for your blood, sweat, and tears. Higher education can be such a cruel, sick, twisted, albeit necessary, game for getting ahead in the business world.

Something for the stress: treadmill.

Best line: 
Movie, music, or meditation. Plan a walk or run for sweat and enjoyment. Focus your mind on artsy things and allow your body to run without you in full control all the time.

Focus on artsy things! How rich! I used to work on my novel and poetry while I ran on the treadmill after school my junior and senior years of high school. Runner’s high helped me deal with the stress. Walking or biking after work now does the same.

What am I doing here? I’m releasing the negative in order to make room for the positive.

Parting shots:
City of Rockville shuts down in snow.

TC drew a Nosferatu on the table when we went to the only place that seemed to be open in Rockville: Macaroni Grill.

Macaroni Grill does GF pasta: corn penne, broccoli raab, roasted red peppers, roasted ‘shrooms, and a piece of wheat spaghetti that slipped in there. >_< #zeroproteinmeals

TC calls my food “mysterious.” Videre licet, mysterious concoctions I ate for breakfast…

…and lunch.

The basic format for “Q’s mystery bowl” is nondairy milk, defrosted berries, nuts/nut butter, chia seeds, fruit/greens (kiwi and Rotkohl, respectively), and spices (cinnamon). I am deliciously weird. That is my affirmation and I’m sticking to it!

St. Valentine’s Day breakfast #1: Tuja Wellness raw cookie dough and ground flaxseed under banana-lemon vice cream.

Skull and crossbones heart socks from my fashion-forward aunt

Wore an Ownie Mom original from my brocade phase: black brocade with red roses jacket. TC made me dinner (tofu fajitas) and dessert (chocolate-dipped fruit) for V-Day.

Fin! Chillin’ out on this snowy Saturday.

Come to the Dark Side…we have vegan and gluten-free goodies.