In my twenty-two years of life, Christmas has always been a time of togetherness, warmth, delightful smells, delicious food, cold weather, cozy fires, and searching for snow when we don't have it outside our doors. Unlike the traditions and rhythms of holiday seasons past, this Christmas has been marked by change and newness. It can be hard to find the Christmas spirit when family is far away, fires are raging in our backyard, and suppressing smoke and ash fills the air. I'm learning how to bring the Christmas spirit to life in my heart, apart from the people and environment that I am so used to.
The name "Fresh Roots" has more meaning to me now than I ever thought it would. I created the name because of my belief in a whole food, plant-filled lifestyle, but it holds a much deeper meaning now. Uprooting our lives in Washington and moving to Santa Barbara, I have been learning how to grow my own fresh roots in an entirely new place and community of people. It's a process. A slow one. However, there are things that make me feel grounded and at home in the midst of change. One of those things being food.
The process, the creativity, the smells, the tastes; the whole experience feels welcoming and nourishing to me.
It's something that is always familiar through different seasons.
Food can transport me back to a cherished memory in an instant, and it can create something beautiful around a new table. Around the table is found laughter, conversation, and the sharing of hearts.
Food connects you to the place that you are in and the people around you.
I am slowly sinking fresh roots into this Santa Barbara earth, and food, in its nourishment, joy, and the shared experiences it brings, is helping me grow.