So recently I have been struggling with solitude. I think since I started living alone two years ago I began to transition from an extreme extrovert to more of an introvert. I was concerned when I first moved into my own place that it would be hard to deal with the solitude. It turned out to be quite peaceful and rejuvenating. Nevertheless, it was a new experience for me and I didn’t realize how much I valued my alone time until just recently. Our Pastor at Church (we will call him Pastor M) preached a sermon on solitude. It really struck me. I realized I had been really tired (emotionally and mentally mostly) for a while now and I wasn’t sure why. Now, writing this I am beginning to put it together. Going from living alone and transitioning into an introvert to living with someone who is close to you most of the day, every day, has really worn me down. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my time with husband. That is why it is so hard to realize I need time apart from him.
So the past 3 weeks exaggerated this realization because I had a horribly long and intrusive 10 days at work (I had to work over the weekend) and then before it was even over we had a house guest. This house guest was so much fun, but still taxing! That week with him was so busy and slowly wore me out even more. Then, two days before house guest #1 left, house guest #2 came! House guest #2 is still here and she is wonderful to have around and things have slowed down a bit, but I still feel like I haven’t had any rest. Yesterday I had to go to my favorite bookstore, buy an iced vanilla latte with whip cream, and sit there with my Bible and my journal and just have some quiet one on one time with God. It’s sad and frustrating that we don’t automatically go to God for respite. Whenever I had a free moment the past 3 weeks I would do things like watch tv and eat ice cream to try to relax, but it never seemed to give me the peace I was searching for. That time at the bookstore was great. I didn’t actually want to leave. It wasn’t enough. I definitely need more. Two final notes on this:
To my house guests if you happen to read this- I love you! Thank you so much for coming over!! I don’t regret it at all and I would have you both over again in a heartbeat. I just didn’t give myself relax time and that’s my fault. Not yours.
And I forgot the second note. Great.
I don’t think there is supposed to be an apostrophe after Panini, but it doesn’t look right without one. Anyway, when I was a young teenager my mommy and I would got out to mother-daughter lunches before or after seeing a movie. We would always go to this little coffee/sandwich shop next to the movie theatre and once we had our first “American As Apple Pie Panini” we were pretty much hooked. The same day we had this panini, we almost got kicked out of the shop for laughing so hard at this ridiculus conversation that I ended up knocking over a vase and breaking it. Side note… that was the third vase I had accidentally broken in that shop. The conversation, as many famously funny conversations go, has faded from our memories except for one comment. I was trying to describe someone’s reaction to something as “drastic” and my mommy heard “jurassic” and we started laughing hysterically at the thought of this person breaking into a tyrannosaurus rex impression, holding up their hands at their chest with two fingers outstretched like the dinky arms a T-rex has and screaching a pathetic roar with a dramatic roll of the head. So, needless to say it was a great sandwich!
Here is my home-made version affectionately called…
Ingredients: (makes 4 sammys)
8 slices sourdough bread
2 tbspn mayo
1 tbspn raspberry preserves
1/2 tspn lemon zest
1 apple thinly sliced (crispier the better, granny smith is great)
8 slices Roast Beef
4 slices Turkey
Lettuce (amount depends on how much you like on your sammy. I don’t recommend too much)
2 small tomatoes (enough slices for 4 sammys)
4 slices mild cheddar or colby cheese
butter as desired
Butter one side of each piece of bread (that will be the outside of your sammy) before beginning. Combine mayo, preserves and lemon zest. Smother four of the slices of bread (non-buttered side) with raspberry-mayo. Apply apple slices on top of raspberry-mayo so that they cover the bread. Place one slice of roast beef on top of apples. Place one slice of turkey on top of roast beef. Place lettuce on top of turkey. Cover lettuce with second slice of roast beef. Top with tomatoes, cheese and then final slice of sourdough (butter side out!).
Place sandwiches in panini grill or grill on low heat on your stove top with skillet or saucepan (like me!). Flip over sandwiches and allow the bread to toast to a golden brown until the cheese begins to melt. Remove from grill/stove and enjoy!