November 1, 2018

Weekend Recap: Turning Point and Feeling Good

Still catching up on weekend recaps… this is October 20/21.

After a week of flying almost every day (Florida on Monday, back to Colorado Tuesday night; New York on Thursday, back to Colorado Friday), I was so excited to get home late Friday night and know that Saturday wasn’t going to be too crazy. I had three meetings with residents in the morning, but then my afternoon was gloriously open – something that hasn’t happened almost my entire campaign!  I was able to get a bunch of errands done, and even sit on the couch and read for 20 minutes… amazing.

My mom and I had talked about potentially going out for pizza, but then my friend Chris texted me and suggested getting together. She said her kids were wiped out, and suggested just ordering pizza delivery… so that worked out perfectly! We had a great night catching up with Chris and Mark, and while I bugged the two of them with some campaign questions, my mom was happy to hang out with their boys, who are about the same age as my nephews. I think my mom misses her grandkids!

I woke up feeling fantastic after an incredible 9 hours of sleep, and kicked off my quiet Sunday morning with a run. It had been so long since I had the time to just go for a run around the neighborhood, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that I was much faster than I’ve been in a while – even though I was trying to just take it easy. I love when running feels effortless and I feel strong!

I also love these mountain views from the end of my street. I will never tire of them.

Meanwhile, it was a beautiful blue sky day, with perfect crisp fall temps for running. This campaign has kept me so busy, and it made me so happy to see that I didn’t totally miss out on fall, which is such an amazingly beautiful season in Colorado. I don’t know if it was the few hours of unscheduled time Saturday, hanging out with friends Saturday night (with no campaign purpose), or finally getting a full night’s sleep, but throughout my run, I just had this glorious feeling that I had reached a turning point and everything was going to be positive from here on out. Only two and a half weeks till Election Day! (And that felt like a good thing, rather than a panicked “and still so much to do!”)

But speaking of so much to do… when I got back from my run, it was time to kick it into high gear. While my mom went on our daily errand to straighten my campaign signs around the neighborhood, I showered, hit the grocery, and cooked a dish for each of us. October’s edition of cookblog club was a lunch meeting, so I made butternut cheddar mac and cheese and pomegranate brussel sprouts salad with creamy pecorino shallot dressing for our fall dishes, both from the Pinch of Yum blog. I was running around like a madwoman at the end (and drafted my mom to help with the finishing touches when she got back), but we finished two minutes before the club was supposed to meet, and jetted out the door to arrive only five minutes late. Whew!

Here’s my brussel sprouts salad all set to go!

I think this month’s blog and recipes were my favorite yet – they were all fantastic dishes that I am eager to make again! We started with a cheesy cauliflower soup with kale pesto made by Karlin, then moved on to a five-ingredient sweet potato turkey chili made by Helene (our gracious host this month). The chili was accompanied by a plate of sides: Cathryn’s super clean broccoli salad with creamy almond dressing, Alpna’s five ingredient coconut curry, and my brussel sprouts salad and squash mac.

I really wanted two bowls of this and only refrained because I knew we had so much other good stuff coming.
This pic came out the least pretty but I thought the dish was one of the best. The sweet potato chili was perfect even without all the extra flavors!
From the top left: broccoli salad, brussel sprouts salad, squash mac, and curry with rice. This was a hearty whole foods meal!

The only dish we didn’t love was the squash mac, which seemed a little bland. However, when I ate some of the leftovers the next day, I realized it was only really bland in comparison to the richness of the other dishes; it just needed a bit of salt and pepper, and then I really liked it. The texture still wasn’t perfect, but that was because I had needed to use gluten-free pasta, which got a bit mushy. I think this would be good with regular pasta in a sturdy shape, and over-the-top excellent with some chicken sausage thrown in! Pinch of Yum was such a hit, and I’m going to now look there all the time for new recipes… so delicious.

Although we were all totally stuffed, we ended with Elisabeth’s insanely amazing pumpkin pecan cheesecake parfaits – which were not only delicious, but plated to perfection. Somehow we made room!

Seriously, aren’t these just beautiful? (Plus delicious. Even though I was full, I still basically tried to lick my glass clean.) Elisabeth swears they weren’t that hard to make.

Once cookblog club wrapped, my mom and I headed home totally stuffed… but we need to get hungry fast, as we had one final event to close out the weekend: my friend Vickee was hosting a curry-themed dinner party to introduce her favorite candidates to all her friends. She and her husband made several different kinds of curry, and then had everyone vote on their favorite recipe – cleverly calling it “Currying Votes and Voting for Curry” 🙂

Although there were several groups of people at the party that I didn’t know, I felt pretty relaxed with a lot of friends there in attendance, and allowed myself to indulge in a glass of wine. But I was soon regretting that decision, when I realized that each of the candidates was going to have to give a brief speech! I grabbed a script I had in my purse from my last campaign party, but when I saw everyone else was speaking off the cuff, I knew I’d have to do the same. Not ideal after a glass of wine… but here went nothing…

…and I was really proud of how I did! I saw a lot of people nodding along as I was speaking, and I made most of the main points I wanted to emphasize my accomplishments and qualifications for Trustee. After I finished, my friend Chris told me I did a fantastic job, and my mom underscored that for me on the way home too. While I’ve had a lot of imposter syndrome throughout this campaign (who, me – run for office in an actual election?!), this was exactly the confidence boost I needed to feel really great about my candidacy, and realize that I have a good shot at winning. (But still can’t count my chickens.)

I got home from the curry party feeling on top of the world. It had been a great weekend, and I now had just 16 days until I’ll know for sure how well I’m doing. Until then, I’ll be relying on feelings… but my feeling is good 🙂


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