While having a very successful urban garden that I often times gloat about, it produces nowhere near the 30-60 lbs. of tomatoes I need every year. So the weekend tomato adventure started as it usually starts-a trip down to the farmers market to my tomato guy (A shout out to Stephens Family Gardens!). The tedious process of creating a base tomato sauce that eventually gets transformed into pizza and spaghetti sauce for the year then begins. Peeling tomato skins is about as pleasant as sticking your hands into raw hamburger….but hey, someone’s got to do it.

Pots are popping, boiling and often time’s boiling over all while music is blasting and yes, occasionally you will catch me dancing with the dog. Several years ago, this weekend adventure became part of my “practice what you preach” movement.

It hit me that often times as therapists, we know a bunch of super cool things that are ridiculously healthy to implement, but we too fall short of living the healthiest and fullest life possible. After that light-bulb moment, I have lived with intention, trying my best to practice what I preach. It doesn’t make much sense to me at this point to do it any other way. One of the techniques I use for a variety of issues is the “do what you love, do what you interested in, and do what you are curious about” exercise.

Well for me, this became not only the weekend of tomatoes, but the weekend of my very first strawberry serrano jam party….I still don’t really know what the difference between gelatin and pectin is….and of course there was no little grandma in the baking aisle to ask! While our tomato plants didn’t do so hot this year, we have enough serrano peppers to feed all of downtown. Out of our dire need to do something with them, the jam idea was born.

I have never made jam. I don’t know that my grandmother ever made jam. Someone may think “why the heck are you doing this?” Because I have a general curiosity for food and how to prepare it. Because I have had a love for the garden since I was 6 (thanks grandpa!) and a general interest in doing some things the old fashioned way. While I’m pretty sure I nailed all items, it was the music, the dancing, the tasting, and my husband racing across the room to turn down a burner as tomato sauce went splooshing that brings a smile to my face, even while scrubbing my counters for the fourth time.

What are you curious about? Is there something you have always wanted to try or do but haven’t? What is that one thing that will bring a smile to your face without fail? Try. Do. Explore. Live with intention.