Goodbye, Sweet Tater

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Four years ago I sat down to write a post about potatoes. On that same day I introduced the world to Caturday. A year later I had quit my job, moved away (and in with my then-boyfriend), and started a master’s program in nutrition. A year after that I’d ended my relationship, moved to Charlotte and signed up for yoga teacher training. After one more trip around the sun I was done with my master’s degree, teaching yoga full-time and on my way to LA for an adventure I would immediately regret (and eventually embrace).

Here, on the fourth anniversary of that first potato post, I’d like to officially shut down the Sweet Tater operation.

Sweet Tater started for no reason in particular. I was bored with my job, drinking wine and seeking a creative outlet, a lethal trifecta that landed me (and I suspect countless others) at wordpress.com. I actually almost started a workout blog called (are you ready for this…?) BlackCatFitness.com but ended up with a half-assed focus on food and a play on my nickname instead. (I’d like a high five for dodging that Black Cat Fitness bullet, thank you.)

Sweet Tater was a fun ride. The blog taught me to test my limits, explore new things, make new friends and have a voice. What I (and the blog) often lacked, unfortunately, was direction, humility and a filter. At times I’m grateful to have so much of my life on record. It can be really fun to look back at what I was doing and how I was growing at different phases in my life. But I also wrote about incredibly personal moments from a painfully shattered frame of mind in what I assume was an attempt to feel validated, heard and less alone. (These are, in my opinion, the real reasons almost anyone is blogging–no matter what they say.)

Under the veil of “healthy living” I trudged along in a never-ending battle against myself. What you didn’t see (or perhaps did) was that I was often paralyzingly depressed, reclusive, self-conscious and out of control. My decision to move away from the blog was gradual but inevitable.

I eventually hit a point where the blog I was writing was no longer a blog I would ever want to read. I started shifting gears in January of this year, attempting to reroute Sweet Tater towards something… different, though I didn’t know what. In the end, an open (but rose-colored) diary for all the world (or at least a limited readership) to see started to feel juvenile at best and cringe-worthily narcissistic at worst. As it turns out, though, four years of blog baggage (2,168 posts to be exact) is a difficult ship to steer so I eventually stopped posting all together and just let it coast.

Don’t get me wrong. I love Sweet Tater and I think there is a lot for me to be proud of in it. And I am. If I sparked just one person’s interest in yoga or vegetarianism or hunger relief or collecting cats off the street, I’ll be happy with what Sweet Tater contributed to the world. But I think it also contributed a lot of unnecessary chatter to an already loud world. A lot changes in four years and I believe strongly that this blog has run its course.

Thanks for your support over the years–for reading and commenting and emailing me. I really am grateful that you chose to spend time here, that you shared stories with me in return, and that you love cats almost as much as I do.

Worried about Caturday? Don’t worry, everyone is… Caturday lives on over at honeystuck.com. Yeah, that’s correct; I ended one blog to start another. (You may roll your eyes.)

Honeystuck is my fresh start in the food blogging world. It’s a lot of the same with a little less baggage and preaching (and plenty of cats). I hope you’ll join me there.

www.honeystuck.com   |  t: @honeystuckblog   |   i: honeystuck

Hilton Head

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I’ve decided that so long as you have a iPhone, you don’t really go on vacation. It’s my own fault because I have what my sister has dubbed “email anxiety” and can’t handle watching unread emails pile up in the inbox so I check it incessantly to try to keep it “clean.” This succeeds only in cluttering my real life with a false sense of urgency 24 hours a day. News flash: My life is not this important.

You’d think the solution might be just not checking to see if there are new emails. When you find a way to make me stop doing that, please let me know. I actually took my email off my homepage and dropped it like three pages deep in the apps to deter myself. Doesn’t work.

Nevertheless, I went on vacation last week.

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We’ve created quite a tradition out of spending long weekends in Hilton Head at Adam’s sister’s house. We don’t ever go with much of a game plan, but it always ends up as lots of eating, lots of bike riding, and lots of beach walking.

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Our favorite Hilton Head destination is Roastfish & Cornbread, a gullah kitchen a little off the beaten path with THE BEST sweet potato cornbread you will ever eat in your life AND a vegetarian menu.

I got the Ethiopian lentil salad with cous cous, acai vinaigrette and fruit. Killer.

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We also discovered a new restaurant on our drive into town: Fiddleheads Pizza in Bluffton. That’s where that massive slice of pizza above came from along with this torched romaine salad.

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Hilton Head for us is generally reserved for yoga pants and bathing suits only, but we fancied up for a legit night out at the Jazz Corner. Adam was really excited about it as is evidenced by this quote I pulled for Yoga Teacher Boyfriend:

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(In case you missed it, I started a whole website dedicated to the ridiculous things Adam says: Yoga Teacher Boyfriend)

The Jazz Corner is a tiny little venue with an award-winning kitchen and a cult following. Reservations should be made about a month in advance to get in. Vegetarian menu? Hardly. But we dined like kings on the bruschetta, grilled pear salad and grilled goat cheese flatbread.

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Successful trip. Next time I’ll leave my phone at home.

Caturday 7/6/13

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Happy Caturday. Little Weaz reporting for duty.

Little Weaz has actually become Rather Large Weaz in the last few months. I’m not sure how it happened but she got pretty rotund right around the time Joey Donut and Tilly showed up. Stress eating, I assume. So she’s on a diet and hates me.

Ralphie, too. In addition to being on diets, the cats are also being trained to stay off the counter. That’s going really well…

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Tilly is busy acclimating to her new environment (still) and is doing pretty well if you ask me.

She and Ralph took a nap on my bed together last week and I no longer have to keep her separated from the other two. VICTORY.

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I’m really proud of the progress she’s made so far and tell her every day that she’s a “good cat doing a good job.” In watching the Cat Whisperer on My Cat from Hell (you bet I watch it), I came to the realization that Tilly is not so much an aggressive cat but instead is just incredibly terrified… of everything. He was working with a problem cat that loved his owner but attacked anyone else who walked in the room. The assumption was that this was an “aggressive” cat trying to protect its owner. The Cat Whisperer, in all his gothic glory, figured out that he was actually a defensive cat scared of everything and trying to protect himself. He just had to be convinced he was safe and his behavior changed dramatically.

In case you are not insane, here is the Cat Whisperer:

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That cat’s behavior, I feel like, is totally Tilly. I’m glad I didn’t give up on her in the beginning (because it sounds like everyone else has) and have given her time to settle in and start to feel safe because she is truly a completely different cat than she was two months ago. She just needed some time. And still needs more, to be honest. (She still hates Adam a whole lot.)

She even joined us for 4th of July festivities with a little corn on the cob:

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For your viewing pleasure, here is a video (that I’ve watched a thousand times in the last two days) of Tilly eating corn on the cob.

Caturday 6/29/13

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I have an idea for a business: OTC medicine delivery service. Seriously though.

This might sound lazy or even extravagant to you until you need to be within a quick sprint’s distance of a toilet. What now, judgeypants? Wish someone would deliver that Pepto to your doorstep now, don’t you?

Four words: OTC medicine delivery service. Or you train your cats to go to CVS.

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I lucked out today because someone has actually agreed to date me long term, which means he got the early morning SOS text for an immediate medicine delivery. (I just want you to know you’re not in love until your significant other brings you anti-diarrheals very early in the morning.)

But what if he wasn’t around? Send Weaz?

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Not a chance. She’d come back with Swedish Fish and a Snuggy.

Ralph? No. She only shops Amazon because she believes everything she could ever need is on the Internet.

Joey Donut? Sadly (or happily?), she has moved to her new home. She was adopted last week.

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So that leaves me with an option to send Tilly the two-legged cat to Walgreen’s or call an OTC medicine delivery service (that doesn’t exist yet but definitely should).

I called Adam instead.

 

Caturday 6/22/13

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Happy summertime Caturday, the greatest season of them all. Ralph and Weaz and Joey Donut and Tilly can’t wait to go to the beach next weekend. (Oh wait, they weren’t invited…?)

Anyway, I am in what can best be described as a “custody battle” with what can best be described as an “animal hoarder” over a two-legged cat. I won’t even get into the details because I fear fake legal ramifications, but I will go so far as to say: NOT GONNA HAPPEN.

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To be clear, Tilly is available for adoption. (I’m just her foster mom even though I seem to think I gave birth to her.) We’re just going to be very select about where she ends up. If you’re on the East coast (preferably Carolina area but all the way up into New England is doable) and interested in hearing more about Tilly, you can reach out to Halfway There Rescue at halfwaythererescue@gmail.com to express interest.

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Speaking of adoptions… Joey Donut is still up for grabs. The longer I keep this kitten the less likely it is that I will ever let her go. You definitely have to be in Charlotte for this little gem (or within reasonable driving distance) but if you’re interested in her just let me know.

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Joey D has settled in nicely with the big cats and seems to think she is one herself. Ralph and Weaz are not terribly amused with the whole situation but are tolerating the whole charade like champs.

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I guess I can’t really talk shit about animal hoarders, can I?