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I’ve been thinking a lot about yeast farts lately.

Let me backtrack a little. I was reading about the process of sourdough bread-making and fermentation, and about how bread is actually more nutritious than its separate ingredients. It is not the simple act of combining water and flour and yeast: it’s about what happens after. Bread is nutritious, you see, because of the process.

When you mix up a batch of dough and add yeast to it, the yeast eats the sugar and excretes carbon dioxide and alcohol. The C02 is what gives bread its airy texture, and the alcohol burns off during baking but leaves behind a tasty flavor. It’s remarkable, when you consider: transformation, alchemy. Yeast farts.

I often feel as if the dough of my life is in a state of fermentation. Experiences, thoughts, feelings – all combining into a sticky mess. Sometimes, there is nothing to do but wait and see how it all turns out. The process is not always dignified. It’s about things breaking down or being crapped out. It’s about inexorable, microscopic change. It’s about letting yourself be holey – not in the sanctified way, but actually allowing yourself to be filled with little empty pockets that make you light and airy. It’s about expansion.

3 Things That Were Good:

1. I was sitting at a stoplight when Swing Out Sister’s “Break Out” came on the radio, and I did the only thing possible, which was to break the hell out. (If you haven’t ever given in to the urge to sing at the top of your lungs and/or car dance when a song you love comes on the radio then sorry about your life.) I was halfway through my performance when I noticed an older gentleman in the lane next to me, cracking up. I waved and he applauded.

2. I found this in my desk drawer. My daughter actually put this in there a while ago, when I first began working in the Tiny Office Pod, but I’d forgotten about it. Apparently, I make that face a lot. My spirit animal is a nonplussed penguin.
Badtz Maru sammy note

3. As I stood in line at the office supply store, I noticed that they were having a sale on adorable pink keychain canisters of pepper spray, so I bought some for myself and some friends. Evidently, I am that girlfriend – the one who will drop off a Just Because book or a bottle of wine or some pepper spray. It comes from being an anxiety cat with the desire to nurture.

2 Things I Did Well:

1. I’ve given up all pretense of trying to tell my body it shouldn’t be hot or cold or whatever because elsewhere in the country, it’s blah blah blah. Am I the only one who does this? “80 degrees isn’t hot. I grew up in Hawaii.” “50 degrees isn’t cold. My friends in the Midwest would punch me right in the face right now.” My inner dialogue on the subject was thus: “Babe, you live in Northern California and being the magnificent human organism that you are, you have adapted to your environment. Stop pretending your actual physical perceptions are something to have angst about. We’ve got bigger fish to fry. Now put on your little insulated gloves so we can go for a nice walk.”

2. While the dudes of the house watched the NFL playoffs, the girl child and I started an art journal. We’re going to try to do it every week. “Remember, Mommy. There’s no right or wrong here. It’s just whatever,” my daughter advised me as the pigment I was attempting to daub in an interesting pattern morphed into a huge blob. This will be my 2015 motto. It’s just whatever.

Sammy and I have decided to start an art journal. <3

A photo posted by Nanea Hoffman (@sweatpantsandcoffee) on