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Random Thoughts

A Zucchini Funk May Be Just What You Need

January 11, 2015

I was in a funk most of November and December. I got my freelance work done, but didn’t have the drive to do anything except sit on the couch and watch every episode of The Gilmore Girls, while shoving food in my mouth. I didn’t want to decorate for Christmas or even bake Christmas cookies, which is like Mother Theresa not wanting to help the poor. I just had no motivation.

Yesterday, I talked to one of my best friends who’s in a funk right now and last night I talked to one of my son’s friends who’s just coming out of one. (For those of you not alive in the ’70s, a funk is another one of my highly technical terms for a dejected mood.)

I dragged myself out of it to enjoy Christmas with my family. I even decorated and finally baked, but I didn’t really feel like my life was back on track until after the New Year. Now I’m Little Miss Resolutions. (Well, not exactly little – another resolution.)

But I wouldn’t be feeling like this if I hadn’t gone through the funk. I’m actually grateful for it. I think it was curative — my brain’s way of mulling things over while appearing mostly dead.

I had a lot to think about, but didn’t want to face it. When you’re divorced, without a full time job, with kids to support, plus no one in this, or any other planetary system to even consider dating, and you’re facing a “major” birthday, you have to look at what you’ve been doing and re-assess. Re-assessing forces you to confront reality.

Reality then slaps you in the face and says, “Snap out of it! You got yourself in this position, now you have to find a way out.”  Reality’s people skills need some work, but she’s correct.

Zucchini with remote

What I looked like the past two months.

I like to think of my funk as a light coma. My brain was working out how to move forward while my body appeared to be resting — like a zucchini on the counter. Maybe when we know life isn’t going the way we want, we have to stop, lay down and vegetate, zucchini-like until we figure something out. But, if it goes past the two month mark, I’d talk to a professional because sometimes you just need help.

I won’t bore you with my resolutions, but this zucchini has finally sprung into action.

If you’re a zucchini who’s sprung into action, please share your story. It’ll help keep me and the rest of us zucchinis motivated.

Next blog, I’ll tell you about the cool food I discover at the Fancy Food Show in San Francisco this week. (See?  I told you I was motivated!)

Now it only seems appropriate to share my Zucchini Bread Recipe.

Fran’s Cinnamon Sugar Topped Zucchini Bread

Hot, just buttered zucchini bread.

Hot, just buttered zucchini bread.

3 eggs

2 cups sugar

2 tsp. vanilla

3/4 cup oil

3 cups peeled and grated zucchini, drained

3 cups flour

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1 cup drained crushed pineapple

Cinnamon sugar and butter for top of bread when done

Beat together eggs, sugar, vanilla and oil in a large bowl. Stir in zucchini.

Hot zucchini bread with butter and cinnamon sugar.

Hot zucchini bread with butter and cinnamon sugar.

(Optional magic ingredient – 1 cup chocolate chips. When my sister-in-law, Patty, adds these, her kids call it crack bread.)

In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add to zucchini mixture. Add pineapple and mix well. Pour into greased and floured 9 x 5 loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 55 to 60 minutes or until wood toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. As soon as you take it out of the oven, remove it from the pan and  generously rub the tops of the loaves with butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.  Makes 3 loaves.

  • Reply
    Rob Sprogell
    January 12, 2015 at 9:13 am

    Fran, dahling, I don’t want to read about you being arrested for fondling things in the produce department… I heard a woman from North Dakota say that in her town folks don’t ever lock their car doors except in August when– if one forgets to lock the car– one might come back to find the back seat filled with zucchini.

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      January 14, 2015 at 12:03 am

      I would never be so crass as to blatantly fondle the zucchini Rob, I would properly court it first. And you are right, my dad couldn’t give away enough zucchini in the summer

  • Reply
    Fran Tunno
    January 11, 2015 at 8:00 pm

    Oh go ahead, gush! Most of the people who read this are family and they won’t believe you anyway. I love you right back. And yes, let’s have that coffee, end of this week. I remember that segment of the Gilmore Girls. A couple of my friends thought that was what this column was about before they read it thoroughly. Shocking! Not what was on the Gilmore Girls but what was on my friend minds.

  • Reply
    January 11, 2015 at 6:18 pm

    All I can say is, I know the feeling, Fran, only “I” don’t have a flippin zucchini to sleep with, . . aghhh, . . .LOL! Well, “All things must pass,” like George sang.

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      January 11, 2015 at 8:01 pm

      I’ve heard zucchini are not that romantic anyway. They never want to cuddle afterward. (Dear God, this blog is going in a direction I hadn’t intended!) But it is good for a laugh and if you don’t laugh you’re in real trouble!

  • Reply
    Nicol Zanzarella
    January 11, 2015 at 4:04 pm

    Oh Fran, this is too public a forum for me to gush about how much I love you. And your writing. And your contemplations… But it’s true! And what a fabulous discovery to make. I think you are right about all of it. Sometimes we have to slow down to see the patch through the zucchini. So many similarities here to things I have experienced and can’t wait to share with you over coffee. Glad you have emerged and sound brighter than ever! Darn you for posting that recipe during all of our resolutions! Love you and in the meantime, I leave you with this:

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