I’m a Joiner…or Not.

I admit that I typically love New Year’s resolutions. I’m not a naysayer of the tradition. There’s something innately beautiful in the idea of renewal with every new year. Hell, just the fact that you’ve lived to see another New Year is pretty awesome. I know I have a bit of a panglossian view of what’s possible, but you can guess how many fucks I give about that.

I don’t love the “new year new you” articles that are the diverticuli in the colon of periodicals this month, but I love the idea of improvement. With the exception of reading Poor Folk by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, which I 100% did not read in 2014, I achieved a goodly number of the goals I set for 2014. (I did, however, read Notes From the Underground, which was like getting kicked in the ovaries by despair. It was quite good.)

This year, I am making some achievable goals that I feel good about.

  1. Read Poor Folk by Fyodor Dostoyevsky. I am confident this will be on my list next year.
  2. Support National Adjunct Walkout Day in any way I can. (I make good tea!)
  3. Do more yoga. Get Yoga ass. Name it Brigitte. *or some variation
  4. Read 150 new books. Make sure at least 50% aren’t romance novels.
  5. Adopt a puppy/dog. (Or steal the Highlander’s new rottie. I’m sure he’d not notice.)
  6. Volunteer more. Perhaps Girls Write Now or Girls on the Run
  7. Apart from milk in my tea or coffee, go vegan before 5-6pm, unless I’m out.
  8. Donate more of my kids’ toys. Don’t let them keep so many. It’s gluttony.
  9. Read the Hobbit series with the Captain. (boy loves a dwarf.)
  10. Spend more time with people who aren’t family/my wolfpack. I’m extra-insular.
  11. Hold no fewer than six dinner parties. That’s bi-monthly. I can do that.
  12. Finish novel WIP. Edit. Start another.
  13. Memorize at least 4 poems and at least 10 sonnets. (Petrarch, Donne, Shakespeare.) It’s excellent for memory.
  14. Learn to either knit or crochet. Maybe attend a group function for this.
  15. Drink more water.

These are all simple, I know. Hell, people who want to give up smoking, and that’s their ONLY resolution, have it harder–I know this from experience. I still feel really hopeful and warm and gooey about my list. Granted, 1 & 15 are going to be an absolute bitch, but I know that the bestie from another teste, Jenn will chew my ass out about the water thing. Not unlike the past three years. Girl can pound some water….and she LIKES it. So weird.

Before I give you the recipe, I’ll give you the first sonnet I plan on memorizing. It’s Petrarch. (translation by Higginson)


Soleasi Nel Mio Cor

She ruled in beauty o’er this heart of mine,
A noble lady in a humble home,
And now her time for heavenly bliss has come,
Tis I am mortal proved, and she divine.
The soul that all its blessings must resign,
And love whose light no more on earth finds room,
Might rend the rocks with pity for their doom,
Yet none their sorrows can in words enshrine;
They weep within my heart; and ears are deafSave mine alone,
and I am crushed with care,
And naught remains to me save mournful breath.
Assuredly but dust and shade we are,
Assuredly desire is blind and brief,
Assuredly its hope but ends in death.

And nowwwww….So you have several partial bottles of champagne that are beginning to go flat. What do you do? Do you drink it all in one morning, ostensibly regretting this life decision and also texting your high school boyfriend that his love of Pulp Fiction doesn’t automatically make him cool? No. You do not. You make this.

Champagne Custard French Toast.

champagne custard french toast champagne custard french toast champagne custard french toast champagne custard french toast

Champagne Custard French Toast

by Cat Bowen

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Keywords: fry appetizer bread breakfast dessert

Ingredients (a loaf’s worth of french)

  • 1 cup champagne (any, but a sweeter variety is best.)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • zest of one orange
  • 1 loaf of day-old French bread
  • a lot of butter to fry it in
  • orange wedges and strawberry slices for serving
  • butter for serving


in a saucepan, combine champagne, cream, milk, and sugar

bring to a slow boil

let simmer for 5 minutes

stir in zest

slice french bread in 1″ slices

place in a big baking dish in a single layer and pour custard over it

let sit 5 minutes and flip

let sit 2 more minutes

heat a skillet to medium and add a dollop of butter

fry the toast for 2 minutes on either side

top with strawberry slices, a bit of butter, and squeeze orange wedges over the toast.

serve with more champagne.

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6 thoughts on “I’m a Joiner…or Not.

  1. Oh man, I pretty much said the same thing about the "new year, new you" BS in my last post. Your french toast is gorg. What a special breakfast that would be. I'd by some Champ just to have "leftovers" for this! Better make that 2 bottles tho...

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