On writing. Part 3

…read part 1 and part 2

The truth is, some of you come here for the food. That’s wonderful; I’m ever the nurturing feeder.

Some of you come for the pictures; you don’t want to cook, but you’d love a bite to eat with your eyes. That’s wonderful; I’m into food pornography as well.

Some of you come for a recipe. Because you need to feed your family. That’s wonderful; I need to feed my family of four (Daniel), too.

Some of you come because you think I’m funny. First, thank you, but really, my friends and family are rolling on the floor at the very mention of anyone finding me funny; I’m…eccentric, they’d tell you.

Some of you come because you think I’m weird. I couldn’t agree more. That’s [in some way] wonderful.

And some of you, well some of you, come because I poke holes in my lightbox life and if you get close enough, you can press an eye up and peek through.

What matters is that you come.

And I write.

And I like the sharing-my-life-and-however-inane-thoughts- part, a world more than the food-part.

Because the funny? It’s just fun.

The fluff? It’s just puffy.

And the pictures? They just let me feel like a junior professional photographer. And you know how I love that.


Queen Anne 025


But the words… they flow out my fingertips with feeling and purpose and the most tremendous stream of passion. I can feel my bones and muscles and all the veins that run through me expand and grow, upward and outward, as I write. I can sense that whatever it is that I’m doing on Saturday mornings when Daniel is humming beside me mid-dream, whatever it is that sounds clickety-click-click-click and sometimes fails to save…it is worthwhile.

When I force myself to sit alone and articulate a floating thought, I feel more. I use words I’d never think to use in everyday conversation. I mis-create metaphor and simile. I personify chocolate. I make sentences of a word. Two words. A phrase.

I ask myself more questions.

And in turn, I get more answers. When I press a pen to paper, I am grieving in a way I never could at twelve. Never knew how at sixteen.



I’m exploring and discovering and traveling, if only at the kitchen table.

Sometimes I hate it. Sometimes I don’t want to write another post, another word. Sometimes I think my life would be better never doing it again. But then I realize, as I do right now, that when I’m just here, writing, I’m in therapy. The therapy that never worked in person. The therapy that always felt forced and disappointing in real time, gets heartened here.

What does that mean to you?

How does that make you feel?

Maybe here, in this online space, I’ve found a big comfy couch I can lie on.

And maybe you’ve become the therapist?




32 thoughts on “On writing. Part 3

  1. Frieda

    Dear Andrea,
    I again do not know what to say. I really don’t. I feel like smiling and crying at the same. If I would see you right now I would want to give you a hug even so I am not a big hugger. This is just great and I hope I can stay for a long time with you and your thoughts and ideas and feelings and everything.
    You are my hero of the day.

    P.S. Tell Daniel that you are hilarious sometimes. He should read more carefully ;)

  2. stephanie

    wow! applauding to you!
    I didn’t know the sad parts you mentioned here. Sorry to hear those.
    I am myself going through a hard time right now and am using your techniques to get over it and not to get into depression.
    But how and where do you find the courage to pour your heart out on the web? I love the writing and love the response, but to actually put it all out there! hmmfff….
    Bravo to you for that!

  3. Lisa

    Love this post! I’m off to read the first parts (I think you’re funny and I like your pics…and I’m charmed by your “weird”… but I’ve been busy this week!).

  4. Johnny

    I feel really selfish right now, scared that you would give this up and my mornings wouldn’t be the same anymore! This IS a therapist’s couch for me because you allow me and all the rest of us to share YOU! We can listen to you articulate your troubled heart and we feel ours. It has, and always will be a tribute to what caring people can do for each other. So many exceptional authors out there write so well because they are running from troubled hearts. You don’t run but embrace, so let us be your sounding board. We don’t judge, just LOVE! If you need to take a day off once in a while, do it, just bring back an old memory and we will be filled.

    Andrea, we love you so much because you have made this space so much more! As for myself, I need this therapy so much more than you. I DARE to think that maybe someone else out there just might be interested in my thoughts and that makes me feel soooo good each day!

    EVERY. WORD. YOU. WRITE. Gives pleasure! :)

  5. chelsey @ clean eating chelsey

    Wow. Just wow.

    And I think you are funny – Daniel needs a reality check. This whole series made me for real want to give you a big hug. So when I do meet you (because it’s inevitable) that’s what I’m going to do. Don’t be frightened. I’ll remind you thats why we’re hugging.

    Writing is my therapy too. I never really went to therapy, but I can tell you for sure that it wouldn’t work because I’m not good at talking. I’m good at writing. In fact, sometimes when I get into a fight with the Husband, I’ll write a letter to him – because my talking don’t do it justice. :)

  6. Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat

    Great conclusion to your series! I come here for all of those reasons, and because I think you’re such a unique and talented writer. I’ve only just started following your blog over the past couple of weeks, but I love that you are so open with your feelings. You’re also evidence that blogging is good for the soul – for venting, for expressing happiness and joy, sheer excitement over simple things like flatbread (which if you ask me, really IS exciting!!) Keep it up!

  7. Melissa

    YES. Yes. yes.

    Writing, for me, is much better than therapy. It allows me to get my thoughts out so that I don’t create neurotic scenarios in my head that don’t really exist. But reading your writing is also therapeutic for me. You help me to examine things in a new way–even if it’s just finding an appreciation for flatbread, or enthusiasm for cupcakes. You help me to consider what I value, what brings me joy. You deliver inspiration and laughter and introspection. So even when you hate it, please keep writing. Please keep coming to therapy. I’ll come, too. :)

  8. brandi@BranAppetit

    the “writing as therapy” thing is totally true. I have worked my way through so many things, simply by putting words to paper. It’s incredible what can happen when you allow yourself to write without self-editing, to just let the words flow.

  9. Bee

    Loved this. I don’t know if you noticed, but I kind of modeled my way of blogging from yours–just recipes aren’t enough. Good journalists know that you need a good hook to lead people in. Good writers know that you need to take that a step further, to open a little window in your chest so people can see your heart beating steadily under the surface of what you’re writing.

    Your blog inspired mine, showed me that I could mesh my love of cooking and blogging (I mean, talking about myself for hours on end, heh?) into a beautiful little cozy corner of the internet.

    Thank you for letting us in. For showing us your life, your journey, your beautiful pictures and amazing voice. You’ve got a lifelong reader in me :)

  10. Caitlin

    I feel like I just had the opportunity to open the door a little wider and take a step into your life that much more.

    Thank you.

    Heartbreaking and beautiful all at once – to me that is the best kind of story. xo

  11. Gina

    It’s blogs like yours that inspire me to start (or redevelop) my own! I look forward to your words each morning and you are now the first bookmark I click on! It is so true that writing is theraputic. Even if I write and my line of thoughts on paper (or screen)and it doesn’t make any sense, it feels good to get the thoughts out there and try to make some sense of them. Even now…not really sure if my comment makes sense;) but it feels so good as a commenter to articulate some sort of line or phrase that may encourage or support a blogger like you or even another reader. P.S. really amazing photography, also very inspiring!

  12. Clarissa @ Sober and the City

    You know I love you. And for this exact reason. You have found the secret! Writing is completely therapeautic and so is sharing yourself with others who might be just. like. you. Sit-on-a-couch therapy itself never really did much for me – but it pushed me to search for another solution.

    PS your camera is awesome, also you are beautiful!

  13. Joyce

    I have been a lurker. Can’t remember how I found your blog. I love the food, I love the photography, but most of all I love the writing. And that is why I stay.
    Hope you keep writing for many years to come.

  14. Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman

    Oh Andrea, how I adore you. I just read through all three posts and I don’t even know where to begin.

    You’re writing. I’ve said from day one that it’s lovely. You really are an amazing writer, so I’m not surprised you’ve come to realization that you are one. It’s what keeps me reading, the way you weave your stories and food together is perfect.

    Also, you’re hilarious. So there, Daniel. ;)

    Writing as therapy is so true. It’s why I’m writing a novel. Not that I get my story down on the page, but that all of the emotions tied to my life are poured into that story. I get lost there.

    What your mom said–first off, she made me tear up–is so completely true. I don’t come here for weight loss advice, and while I do love the food photos the reason I read your blog every day (even if I don’t comment) is because of you. The emotion behind your writing and the stories you tell and how open and honest and real you are.


  15. Michelle

    I have fallen in love with your blog. What brought me here was your posts on walking and losing the weight – that journey. What kept me here was your writing. I love looking at the food photos, but I’m not a cook. It’s what’s in between the photos that draws me. I love your honesty and your insight and your use of words. Because I, too, love words. And your posts on writing have really stirred something in me – I’ve been agonizing over whether or not to continue to blog. I’ve been wondering if I should even bother because I very rarely receive any comments – although maybe a bunch of people are reading? But it makes me wonder if I should keep doing it. And the thing I came to realize is that I write because it’s what I do. Regardless of whether or not anyone is reading it – it’s what I do. And reading what you’ve written here has reinforced what I just posted about on my own blog. Thank you.

  16. Leah @ Why Deprive?

    This was beautiful Andrea. You are truly a gifted writer.
    I love that I get to know you more everytime Im here. I love that you are so honest, and that you use your blog as a form of therapy. My blog has been therapy for me too. Its an amazing thing, the support, the advice, everything that comes along with blogging. I just love it.

  17. Arianna @ Laughter & Linguini

    Incredible. You just hit the nail on the head for me, and I’m sure for any other writers who lay in bed at night thinking thoughts that are the bare truth, that for some reason we just can’t say.. we have to write. I can relate so much, it IS therapy. So glad you’re doing great – you are gorgeous, and your writing, recipes, and photos are too! I’m so inspired by this :)

  18. Pingback: On writing. Part 2 | Can You Stay For Dinner?

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