Is anybody still awake?

It’s 3 am on New Year’s day, and I’ve just opened up my time capsule. The sky is dark and I’m all alone in my new house. My friends have left and my sister is still out, so I’m curled up in bed reading my last year’s New Year’s resolutions. It’s funny how the air inside the time capsule smells like last year’s air freshener.

These were my new year’s resolutions for 2018:

  1. Write a book
  2. Open myself up to love and friendships.

Just these two things. Pretty simple, but they make up a huge part of who I am, the kind of person I want to be and what makes me happy.

So did I accomplish these resolutions?

Writing a book—I have written a story, a very basic draft outline, but I haven’t filled in the missing bits yet. The story is still in my diary and I aim to complete what I haven’t finished this year. So no, I haven’t completed this resolution.

Opening myself up to love and friendships—This one has always been a hard one for me. I tend to like my own space and I have to consciously remind myself to make an effort to hang out with friends. Last year there were so many ups and downs, I have strengthened new friendships and then loosened my grip on them. Opening myself up to people is a continuous process, I just hope that my friends are patient enough to wait for me.

I have realised that 2018 was all about setting up my goals, rather than finishing them. I try to set up goals that are worth spending a lifetime trying for, so that it’s a continuous process of change.

But I’m going to add something different this year. Not only am I going to write down my New Year’s resolutions for 2019, I’m also going to create a plan for how I’m going to achieve it. And I already have an idea.

Right now, I need to sleep. I have to wake up early in the morning and go to my grandparents because we are making New Year’s dumplings. It is now 4.00am.

Is anybody else still awake?

The secret cooking club

The secret’s out. I can’t cook.

How am I supposed to function as an independent adult if I don’t know how to cook?

As I’m entering my mid-20s, I can’t sweep all the unadult-like things I do under the rug anymore. And learning to cook is one of those transient touches towards a life of independence.

Ironically, it was a children’s book that ignited my desire to learn how to cook. As with most things in my life, I tend to draw inspiration from books, because they open my eyes up to all the impossibly possible things.

The secret cooking club, which is the name of this heartwarming little book, was one of those rare and lucky finds in the library.

What’s so special about this book is that it has heart. You feel it when the main character Scarlett, discovers a secret kitchen in her neighbour’s house, and teaches herself how to cook from a mysterious cookbook dedicated to someone nicknamed ‘the little cook.’

I’m trying to emulate the details and feelings in that book and bring it to my life.

Although I won’t be discovering a secret kitchen in my neighbour’s house anytime soon, I’ll have to work with discovering the inner sanctuary of my own kitchen.

And even though ingredients won’t magically appear everytime I turn to a recipe, that’s ok because I’ll just have to go to my local Countdown store and buy all the ingredients.

And even though there isn’t a special recipe book waiting for me in my kitchen dedicated to ‘the little cook’, I bought a special cookbook dedicated especially for my elementary level cooking skills. It’s called, The student cookbook.

I think that’s enough to tick off the checklist of similarities between the book and my secret or not-so-secret, one person cooking club.

I’m hopeful that as I teach myself how to cook, I’ll evoke the same magic and wonder that that book brought.