All those hard things that I’ve put off, like taxes and the empending move, are fast approaching. Excitement had turned into paralizing fear. The creative work in the kitchen, which is the work I am passionate about, is now needing to be on the back-burner for a bit, while we look at the books. The fear is there and I am swimming in tears. I so dislike this part of the job. When I talked to the book keeper, AKA, Guardian Angel, she says, “I am part accountant, part psychologist”. It is true, she needed to talk me off the edge. My head races, will she tell me I need to get a day job, and quit this silly quest of owning my own business? Will she tell me I am working so hard for absolutely nothing? Who will take care of the girls if I have to get a 9-5 job? Will she say I am the dumbest client EVER to make all these bookkeeping mistakes? The self-doubt in my head is amazingly ridiculous. If you could hear the chatter going on in my head, you wouldn’t believe that we had accomplished what we had in the last year. In fact, I HAD forgotten. I had forgotten all the people we have helped to make their lives simpler, healthier, and more joyful with each event or dinner we had prepared. I HAD forgotten what this quest was all for, helping those that need it. We all face different challenges that can seem overwhelming. Some worse than others but it is all relative to our own lives. I know I felt hopeless and stopped believing in myself. Heck, I was having trouble recognizing the woman staring back in the mirror.
Through these trials we get a little bit stronger. We are all a little stronger after going through difficult times and we WILL get through them. Whether it is the business books, a loved one who is sick, a child whose tantrums seem to be unruly, or just a rotten day at work, we push forward. The clouds do move out, leaving the sun to shine. The clouds come and go, but the sun is always there. I saw this once on an airplane. The sky was so crystal clear, beautifuland sunny above the clouds, then we dipped down to land and it was the most grey day below. The visual will forever be with me as inspiration to be patient for the clouds to move out. Mimi Thorrison, model, writer, mother and chef wrote in her last blog post on Manger this, and it speaks directly to my heart even though there is a huge ocean between us and she was writing of something much deeper.
In the past week I’ve come to realize that simple things like sharing a table at dinner with the whole family are never more important than in times of turmoil. The comfort of good food, the healing power of a shared moment is never more needed than on a cold January night when bad news reaches your door.
So we continue to lead our lives, cook, eat, laugh and cry together and hope that by raising our children to the best of our abilities will help create a better world.
Today, it is time to get back in the kitchen. All the hard work isn’t over, but I want to give myself a little sunshine before trudging through the mud again later this week. I am going to treat myself and my little ones with a little creative fun that I hope you will enjoy too. This dish is a wonderful rainbow! My Dad says, “you want every color on your plate”. This one serves that purpose!
Here’s Ali’s recipe for Rainbow Thai Chicken Salad-
3 cups shredded cooked chicken
2 cups shredded purple cabbage
1 cup shredded green cabbage
1 avocado, diced
1 mango, peeled, pitted and diced
1 (large) carrot, julienned or shredded
1 red pepper, cored and julienned (or diced)
1 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro leaves
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1/4 cup chopped cashews or peanuts
PEANUT DRESSING INGREDIENTS:
1/2 cup natural peanut butter
2-3 tablespoons hot water
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
2-3 tablespoons soy sauce (if you are gluten-free, use GF soy sauce or tamari)
2 tablespoons honey
1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
juice of 1-1 1/2 lime
Toss all your salad ingredients in a bowl leaving out the peanuts and some of the cilantro for garnishing the finished salad. In another bowl, mix together all dressing ingredients. You can set aside until ready to serve. When you are ready to serve, mix together your salad and dressing. Top with peanuts or cashiews and cilantro.
I found this recipe on Gimme Some Oven‘s website. I thought her peanut dressing was a little too thick but she mentions that may happen and to add hot water. I added more fresh lime juice and tamari (gluten free soy sauce) as well as hot water. Again, the most important thing is getting all these wonderful colors on your plate.
The rainbow makes its way into your mouth and then to body and soul. It will be sure to bring out the sun, if even for a moment at lunch! Whatever clouds may be hovering around you, remember the sun is there, we just may not be able to see it. Here’s to the sun during this cold February! Cheers!