Happiness is made at home. Photo by Gabriela Medina.
By Gabriela Medina, Staff Reporter
Being in a pandemic has made it easy to become overwhelmed and anxious, especially while stuck at home. To combat these feelings, many people have picked up new hobbies like baking and cooking, which is very calming and therapeutic.
I can honestly say that I have personally felt more at ease baking during the pandemic. I have always loved baking and have learned so much in the kitchen. I enjoy the entire process from searching for a new recipe to tasting something so yummy!
If I am not baking or cooking alone, my mom or my older sister will accompany me in my task, making it more fun. Our experience in the kitchen has definitely brought us closer and I truly value that. Since we are always in the kitchen, we realized that we could not just keep these treats to ourselves and decided to share with others, hoping that they would enjoy them as much as we did. Within a couple of months, our business started growing.
During the pandemic, we have never been busier fulfilling orders for our small “sweet” business. Not only do we @RMG.Creations enjoy playing with different flavors for our macarons, but we enjoy meeting new people and seeing their reactions to something that we worked so hard on.
Komal Kapoor, a marketing and media professor at California State University, Dominguez Hills, promotes a healthy lifestyle on her blog Green Sea Shells where she posts vegetarian recipes, health advice, and other recommendations.
“The pandemic is a stressful time and cooking helps me relax,” Kapoor said. “It temporarily takes my mind off the million things I am juggling.”
Although Kapoor has already had experience in the kitchen, Alicia Bautista, a communications major at CSUDH, has decided to try baking for the first time to kill time.
“When I have a lot on my mind, baking easily distracts me. Not only does it calm me down, but I am able to treat my family to delicious sweets,” said Bautista. “Baking has always been an interest of mine, but I had never fully dived into it till the pandemic. I now bake twice a week and I can see my skills improving greatly!” Bautista said.
While Bautista began picking up this new interest, other CSUDH students like Lenaya Sterling, a biology major, has definitely experimented more in the kitchen.
“When I bake, I have full control. Anxiety or stress makes a person feel powerless whether it’s random or from a specific problem they’re facing. “Having control over a project and using it as a creative outlet relaxes me pretty quickly when I’m stressed or even bored.”
It is interesting how a simple hobby such as baking or cooking can influence one’s entire mood. Not only has it become so therapeutic for some, but they have found that hobbies such as this one can bring out their creative side.
“Hobbies are good for the brain. They also help with channeling our creativity in positive, constructive ways. For me, cooking has been a satisfying experience,” Kapoor said. “A new hobby during these isolating times gives us a sense of accomplishment, challenges us to do better and live healthier lives.”
The next time you are bored and can not decide on what to do next, search up an easy recipe and give it a try. You might love the results more than you expected.
“I would totally encourage others to bake for themselves. It’s a great distraction and can help a person become more comfortable with their sense of creativity… It’s the kind of activity that allows me to be creative and also make others happy,” Sterling said. “I always give my desserts away to friends and family so I get two benefits in the single activity… I actually plan on selling my desserts soon through social media since my followers always love when I post my projects.”
Activities such as baking and cooking are great ways to relieve stress and satisfy a craving. Trying something new can impact your life, even if it is for a short amount of time. If you enjoy doing something that makes you happy, there is no doubt that it will not bring you some sort of serenity.
These Toros definitely recommend trying new hobbies, especially in the kitchen. I know when it comes to me, I never know what to bake next. There are just so many options! What tasty treats would you want to bake first- ooey gooey chocolate chip cookies or soft fudge brownies with a sprinkle of powdered sugar?