Work morale is a bit low. My boss, in response to this, rather than attempting to address the underlying lack of organization where I work, instead has started a mandatory email chain of inspirational quotations. Wow, that’ll help.
Here are some actual useful coping strategies I have found.
1. Caffeine. Enough said.
I got to Steve’s for our usual Thursday lunch and he was off buying groceries for our usual Thursday potluck dinner. So I walked to Dunkies. Dunkin Donuts makes the bessssssssssst coffee. Ubiquitous Dunkin Donuts on every corner is what I think I miss most about living in Boston.
Toasted almond coffee. With milk. Yes.
2. Potluck. I cannot imagine having a high stress job without truly phenom coworkers. Our Americorpse team is the bessssssssssst. Potluck is usually the highlight of my week.
Our food sourcing situation is completely ridiculous. Not only do I and my coworkers and boyfriend (well er my boyfriend is my coworker, shh) constantly end up eating at work and sometimes taking home extra food bank food, Patricia’s boyfriend who works at a completely different site… gets food bank food and takes it home. So he brought home a gargantuan amount of broccoli and Patricia was complaining about what to do it and I said “hook me up.”
Thus, my potluck contribution, “broccoli two ways.”
First, Jacques Pepin’s broccoli stem relish (with fresh mint, chili, garlic, sesame oil, etc.)
Annnnd the florets, which I quickly sauteed in peanut oil, then threw in some water to steam, then dumped in Asian fermented black soybean sauce for flava.
So I had my cooking all set and then I, after a long stroll after work in the park near my job/Steve’s apartment, I got to Steve’s about fifteen minutes before potluck was set to start, thinking he’d be done.
So he was… um… making my mom a birthday card. Which was very cute. And had… cooked nothing.
So I made Steve’s contribution. Didn’t really complain since it was muhammara (! Oh my God guys remember when I made this every day all the time?! Now I’ve tasted it again and now it’s SO STARTING AGAIN AS SOON AS RED PEPPERS ARE AFFORDABLE. Well that won’t really be for awhile. The guys in this batch came from…
a dumpster… an undisclosed source)
Served in a blender because by the time it was finished I was tired and didn’t feel like dealing with spatulas and transferring.
diving shopping expedition yielded a lotta bread, so we had a lotta bread with olive oil and cheese, mm.
Roomies Carolyn and Erin both went Indian-ish. Carolyn went for a chickpea and tomato curry…
And Erin made Trader Joe’s veggie masala burgers which really are the greatest veggie burgers of all time (well in taste anyway. They are tragically low on protein.)
Patricia brought muffins. They had cornmeal, cheese and… broccoli :D
So intensely good. I had three?!
My first plate, just a sampling.
And finally, work stress is vastly improved when one has
3. Quality snacks.
All reasonably healthful, from a variety of sources, which did good things for my blood sugar level in a variety of unpredictable situations
From the Asian market near Steve’s, when we’d taken a walk after work and it was already 8 o’clock and it seemed prudent to get a snack since dinner had yet to be even conceived of, let alone made:
Dried green mango!
Pros: Wonderfully tangy (though there is added sugar), its texture is chewy enough that it takes awhile to eat, alowing you to focus on its flavors.
Cons: a bit expensive and low in fiber
As seen in Healthy and Sane, Somersaults! Saw them at World Market when I ran there to unsuccessfully hunt for birthday pressies for my mom during my lunch break.
Pros: Delicious crunchiness! Zesty ranch-y salsa-y salty flavor! As Steve put it, like a healthy version of Combos (oh man, remember those?!). And good on the protein so it’s pretty respectably filling.
Cons: Why is the second ingredient (after sunflower seeds) white flour? It’s supposed to be “toasted grains”! That’s hippie food! Make the grains whole! Throw some oats in there! In all honesty, their appearance lacks a lot… in that they look like dog food. Also, friggin’ expensive.
TJ’s dried blueberries.
Pros: antioxidant powerhouse, whole big bag is just 120 calories, so if you just feel like eating and want something sweet these are your guys
Cons: FRIGGIN FRIGGIN EXPENSIVE. And make your teeth blue. And you really only want to eat a few at a time because they are strangely chewy.