Thursday, April 24, 2008

Wednesday food news (a day late)

I’m finally catching up on my Wednesday food section reading. Here are some things I plan to try:

Milk chocolate-banana pudding in the New York Times.

The pope’s risotto in the NYT (originally made for Benedict XVI by Lidia Bastianich.)

I have been intrigued by the new 200-calorie offerings at Au Bon Pain. Yes, yes, I know it’s a chain, but I work right near the downtown location and often need an afternoon snack. Brie with grapes and crackers or sliced turkey rolls filled with asparagus, cranberry chutney and gorgonzola beat a trip to the vending machine any day.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

What I’ve been up to

I was out of town most of last week, which is my primary excuse for not blogging and cooking. My excuse for not doing either of these things in the weeks prior to that is that I was steeped in preparation for the aforementioned out-of-town trips.

So here’s where I was: As many of you know, I wrote a book that was published wayyy back in September 2003. Since that time, Getting a Life has worked its way into the hands of many college students, twentysomethings and their mentors, and I have gotten a number of speaking invitations during the past four-and-a-half years as a result of GAL.

Last Wednesday I gave a keynote address at a symposium on youth and young adult ministry that was organized by one of the people I admire most in the contemporary Catholic world: Fr. Ronald Rolheiser. I have long been a fan of his writing (especially The Holy Longing) so I was thrilled to be able to be a part of something he had a hand in. The symposium was held in San Antonio at the Oblate School of Theology, where Fr. Ron is president. It was a delightful gathering and I even got to squeeze in a fun dinner on the Riverwalk as well as a visit to the Alamo.

On Sunday I spoke in East Lansing, Michigan at St. John Student Parish, which is the Catholic community that’s affiliated with Michigan State University. I believe that St. John’s has one of the largest, if not the largest, Catholic campus ministry programs in the country. I was so impressed with the place, as well as with the student interns I met with before I gave my talk.
These two trips were great, but I’ll be glad to get some r & r this weekend, finally unpack my suitcases and enjoy the tulips and grape hyacinths in full bloom in my yard.

I’ll be back in the kitchen again soon, sharing my culinary adventures as soon as I can. Until then, keeping up with the spiritual theme of this post, here’s a quote that I included in my talk in San Antonio. Speaking it aloud to a roomful of people has kept it in the forefront of my mind:

“There is something way down deep that's eternal about every human being."
~Thornton Wilder, Our Town (Act III)