Tuesday, August 20, 2013

"I want to love food, but sometimes I hate it"....

Every week or so, it is time to come up with a menu plan. Oh boy, am I *really* bad at this. Menu planning has been something I have struggled with since the first week of my marriage. I would, and oftentimes continue to, sit at the table with three or four cookbooks around me, searching through them to see what I could make that week. This process usually takes minimum of one hour, and I usually want to cry at least once while doing it. FOOD! Food. We all need food. Everyone has to eat, and the crazy thing is that it's usually 3 times a day.

The semester following my marriage gave me lots of opportunities to learn about food. I graduated with a B.A. in Geography and couldn't help coming out of it a little more aware about sustainability, food-sources, GMO's, etc. Top that with a little Food, Inc., and a couple other documentaries and articles (I also learned that margarine is a couple of molecules away from plastic), and you have a newly-wed who has basically only cooked boxed meals for most of her life who has a new-found desire to cook more whole foods. The desire to do so, but not really the know-how or the time.

Throw a precious little baby Henry into the mix, and you have a homemaker who freaks out about food every time she has to menu plan. Healthy and natural vs. cheap and easy, I feel like those things are definitely at odds. It costs money to eat well, and it takes diligence and patience in the kitchen. I know that none of us make it out of here alive (sorry to be morbid) but I want to teach my children to love food, to be okay with taking the time to prepare it, and to enjoy the whole process of food: growing it, preparing it, enjoying the delicious fruits of our labor. For me to teach the children that, I have to be doing it first. Right now I kind of hate food. I hate it insofar as it causes me stress, I don't know how to prepare it very well (as far as more fresh, whole food meals go), and cooking is not something I currently enjoy doing.

I really do want to love food and everything that comes along with it. Can I teach myself that? I don't know. I want to step up to the weekly menu plan with joy and excitement about the ways I get to serve my family and friends. Cooking isn't easy for me, but the result of it -- eating -- brings people together on a regular basis, it is important and worth it.

I believe that food is medicine. What we put into our body matters. The fact of the matter is one person has to prepare food for a family. Being a stay-at-home mom gives me the time and ability to be that person. So, here we go!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Never Stop Starting...

The phrase "never stop starting" was wisdom given to me from a very good friend and mentor. It rings incredibly true for me, and I'm guessing for others as well. I tend to have extremist tendencies and if a goal of mine is ruined, well, then that's the end of the world and the whole house falls apart. I say the house falls apart because this comes up mainly in the world of housework. My home is either perfectly spotless, or slowly falls apart until it's pretty bad. (Yes, I have a toddler, but at times it's unreasonably bad.)

I'm guessing you can spell out what "never stop starting" means, but in case you're having a hard time with it, let me tell you: Never stop starting doing things, never stop starting pursuing your goals and dreams, never stop starting living your life, reading books, etc. The list can say whatever you want it to say. Don't give up. You will possibly ruin your New Years Resolution of eating no sweets or desserts on February 14 when someone gives you chocolate -- or when you see all the delicious chocolate at the store and buy some for yourself.  But don't let that get you down! You can just as easily start the next day....though I am now more for setting reasonable goals that you might actually stick with. 

Ah, Bible reading has been a big one for me. Growing up, I always had the resolution at the new year to read the whole Bible in a year. When I would miss a day, which didn't always take too long to happen, then I would feel incredibly discouraged -- I had failed myself. The missed day of reading would turn into a week which turned into a month and so on and so forth until I found myself back at the new year only to start with the same overwhelming goal again. Needless to say, I still have not read the entire Bible, but I am working on it. My pace is slow and steady, and I do still miss days, but they don't bother me as much. Never stop starting reading your Bible. You will finish it eventually and God will reveal things to you over time. You don't have to be a seminary student to read it, and you might get things out of context, but God can guide you and reveal things to you in your reading. Just pray that He would. 

Feel free to comment some of the things you've had problems sticking with, goals you haven't met because you don't meet them and then you quit. I'd be interested to know, if you're willing to share.

Never stop starting!