Everyone else’s lives always seem to be so much better than mine. Everyone is travelling and off doing cool things, working cool jobs and just generally having an excellent time. This is of course according to social media.
After talking to a number of close girl friends about this sense of FOMO (fear of missing out) that I suffer, I came to the realisation that I am not alone. Far from it. All of my friends are experiencing the same thing. Each week that passes it seems like another one of their friends is off on a great big new OE or adventure somewhere. It also seems like everyone is getting married and having babies (uhh gross no thanks).
I feel like this sense of FOMO and disappointment in our own seemingly unexciting lives needs to be addressed. In all honesty, social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram have lead to me thinking some pretty dark thoughts and feeling very low about myself. Everything from body image to feeling like I am not living life to the fullest.
When was the last time someone posted about them doing the laundry? Or feeding the cat? Or taking their car to get a WOF? Imagine if social media actually proportionally represented our lives. Imagine if travelling and going out to cool bars and eating great food was only posted about the realistic 1% that it actually happened. Maybe #myordinarylife should become a thing? Maybe I should start it as some sort of mental health FOMO awareness campaign.
I still feel like I am missing out though. I am grateful for what I have don’t get me wrong. I have a job which pays the rent. Sure I am not being paid to be Nigella but you have to start somewhere. I have parents that love me and only beat me sometimes and I have the most wonderful friends. But sometimes I just wish I had more.
Like more money. And more time to travel. The paradox of employment. When you are a student you have all the time but none of the money and then the opposite when you leave school and get a so called ‘real-job’. Actually lets be realistic, I work full time and still have no money. For a special portion of my friend group who are self employed art kids, the concept of annual leave is foreign. But to me, the 1.67 days I accumulate per month is tormenting. By the end of July I will have nine point something days to spend wooo . . .
Then comes the money issue. Sometimes I wish that we had little diamonds above our heads, like they do in The Sims. But as well as signalling mood, it also gave an indication of the person’s financial situation. Like maxed out credit cards, student loans and overdraft were exposed to the whole world. So those of us who save, are sensible, don’t have credit cards and reliably pay off our minimal student loans don’t feel so bad wearing clothes from Kmart three years ago and Nike frees with holes in the toes.
So how is this all related to apple caramel cake? Well I went to go see the travel agent about a trip to South East Asia. After investigating the cost of a 25 day Contiki it was looking like it was going to set me back over 7k. I left feeling deflated, horrendously disheartened and broke so I came home to have a big fat cry and make a cake to make me feel better.
While I was stewing the apples for the puree these thoughts came to my head and I felt the need to put them out in the world. You know I am truly upset when I end up spewing out an article/blog post.
So after getting soothing and rational texts from my little brother (how the hell did he get so wise? I swore for a second it was one of my parents texting off his phone) and getting this off my chest a plan B began developing. A shorter and more affordable trip may be on the cards.
I guess that’s life though, sacrifices must be made somewhere. We can’t have everything, contrary to what Facebook tells us.
On that note, does someone want to go fill my car up for me? I spent all my money on cake ingredients. . . .
I made use of all the apples I got from work the other day. After the previous apple loaf, a MASSIVE crumble for the boys at work and this cake I still have a gazillion apples left to use.
This was originally a gluten free cake. It is not often to turn a GF cake into a G cake is it? Just use GF flour and baking powder if you are that way inclined.
To make the apple puree just boil about two diced apples for about five minutes, drain and then mash.
This is actually a really ugly cake. Definately not photogenic. But I am going to spin some bullshit about how it is important not to hide 'ugly cakes' and display everything honestly for the world to see so that you don't get this warped idea that I am an amazing cake baker all the time.
Upside Down Caramel Apple Cake
Adapted from Julie Le Clerc’s Favourite Cakes
3 apples, peeled and sliced into thin wedges
1/3 cup brown sugar
50g butter, melted
75g butter, softened
2/3 cups castor sugar
½ cup unsweetened apple puree
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 ¼ cup plain flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees on bake.
Line a 20cm spring form cake tin with baking paper and grease the sides.
Mix together the butter and sugar for the topping and spread over the base of the cake tin. Arrange the apple slices over the top.
Cream together the butter and sugar for the cake until light and fluffy. Add the egg and beat until voluminous. Mix in the apple puree and vanilla then sift in the flour, baking powder and cinnamon. Spread this batter over the top of the apples.
Bake for 45-55 minutes until a skewer comes out clean when inserted. You may need to place tin foil over the top at about the 40 minute mark to stop the cake from over browning.
Leave to cool in the tin for 20 minutes before turning out onto a serving plate. This cake is best served warm and needs to be removed from the tin before the sugar in the topping sets and glues it in.