September Baking

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When reminiscing back on September, I remember it going by very slowly and being especially hard on me emotionally. It felt as though I was simply trudging through the weeks and waiting for each one to end. The warm weather only made my funk worse because warm weather makes me feel lethargic and out of it. It was really difficult to feel motivated personally, professionally, and academically.

I felt this way even though I was always busy doing something too. I was either at school or work or with friends or with the doodies, but I consistently felt off. Despite being surrounded by people and being in engaging environments, nothing really pulled me out of my mood. This was a mood that seemed to be difficult to shake off, which is why I forced myself to bake when I had time. My free time is usually spent catching up on sleep and doing homework but I have to make time for creative endeavors every once in a while. When I'm in a funk, creative projects really help to lighten my mood.

In September, two baking projects were pumpkin bread and red velvet cupcakes. I've never made pumpkin bread before but now I know that I love making my own bread. I used a recipe I found online and it was absolutely delicious. However, the baking process took twice as long because I only had one bread pan to work with. The next day, I found myself at Target with a coupon for another bread pan because I had such a great time making the pumpkin bread. Now I'm planning out other bread recipes I want to try.

This was also the first time I made red velvet cake as well. I think they came out well but it needed vinegar for that tangy kick that red velvet cake tends to have. (Now I know for next time!) I also made the cream cheese frosting by hand because I don't have an electronic mixer and goddamn, my arms have never hurt so much! I felt brolic after I finished making a batch of frosting but I didn't do too great of a job because it still managed to have clumps in it.

All in all, trying out new recipes was a great way to get a break from my gloomy mood. It especially helps when I know I'll be photographing the end result because then, I'll want things to look as aesthetically pleasing as possible and really get into the process of it.

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Nancy Hoang created Hopeless Thunder in 2007. She conducts the interviews, writes the articles, photographs the concerts, and handles the site's coding & design. (Basically, she's a control freak.) Her work can also be seen on music publication, CMJ. Contact Nancy for image licensing, assignments, or just to say hi.