Wednesday, February 18, 2009

P B & J

I never ate peanut butter and jam sandwiches growing up - it wasn't something that my mom ever made for us. I was never really a fan of jam, for two reasons: 

1. I used to have the WORST car sickness as a child. Imagine sitting in the backseat of a 1973, 2 door Chevy Imapala (aka Bessy) in the middle of your sister and brother. So driving down the road - Dad is driving concentrating on the road, listening to the CBC. Mom is in the front out cold, drooling in her sleep. Brother is on one side - legs on top of my lap and punching me anytime I touch him. Sister on the other side, feet on top of my brother's legs that are on top of me and fast asleep. And then there is me. Sitting in the middle of a car with no air, staring at the road ahead, trying to have a conversation with my dad and not touch my brother. And then it happens. I would yell "I'm gonna be sick!". Sister would yell "MOM!!! Cheryl's going to get sick". Brother would yell "If you touch me, I'll punch you". Mom "Dad - PULL OVER". Dad "Jesus Christ Child!" The plastic bag would be passed back in panic, I would throw up, we would pull over - have to get everyone out of the car - get me cleaned up, and then it was back on the road. Ok, sorry - back on track. So in order to help with the car sickness, my mom would crush a gravol into a tbsp full of jam. I could taste the gravol no matter how much jam was used.  

2. It's too sweet. I love homemade jam - if it doesn't have too much sugar in it. I found a sugar free blueberry jam which I became somewhat addicted to last summer. So good.

Positive Attitude - this is a virtue that came up today at work. On my way home from work, when sitting in traffic at a light on top of the bridge on Tillicum, a young woman passed me walking. I have known this woman by face for many years - since I worked at Safeway. This young woman always has a smile on her face whenever I see her. I wish that I knew her name. She has a developmental disability. Today when I saw her, she reminded me of Grace. Lovely Grace. Grace was a woman I met in Kitimat when I volunteered with the Special Olympics. She too has a developmental disability. I ended up having the pleasure of working with her and spending 5 days a week with her and a few others. Grace came from a very traditional Portugese family and spent most of her early and teen years at home with her parents. It seems as though her parents didn't have the knowledge or resources to have her be a part of her community. She spent many years in the Community Living Day Center, and this changed her life. She had challenges that many of us will never know. She had limitations that many of us will never have to endure. And she had the biggest heart that I feel so fortunate to have known. She always had a smile on her face. She loved the little things - me picking her up and going to get groceries; coming to our house for a visit and having a cooler; helping me walk Maggie; buying a new lipstick. ALWAYS happy. She was always positive. No matter how things were difficult some times, she always stayed positive.  I miss her.
So here I was in my car, thinking of Grace, and how I miss her. She managed to find the positive in everything. How wonderful it would be to keep positive and see the good and always see the light. And then I thought, I can. How come I am focusing on someone else's positivity and thinking that I don't have that quality? I do have this though. I really need to stop being so hard on myself and see the positive in everything. Do you all struggle with that? How can we change it? Do we just try not to think negative at all? Is that realistic? I think I am going to try it this way: whenever I have a negative thought, I just have to switch it and think of how I can make it positive. This is my focus. I will make this a big priority in my life.  We all have Grace in us. 

Bruce Springsteen - oh how I love! Rumour has it, he is coming to Victoria. If this happens - I will wet my pants. The excitement will be too much. I won't be able to contain myself. Thinking of him coming is exciting enough. So imagine how exciting it will be if he actually does come? Fingers crossed the rumour will come true. 

Jules - thanks for all of the lovely veggies: they inspired tonight's dinner. You're a spoiler. Love.

Salad Sims Style  

20 asparagus stalks
1/2 head of cauliflower - chopped into large chunks
2 cups cherry or grape tomatoes
1 small head of romaine lettuce - tear into good sized pieces
1 red pepper chopped 
1/2 cup goat cheese - crumbled

Boil asparagus and cauliflower for about 5 minutes. Remove from boiling water and add to ice water to stop the cooking. Let sit for a couple of minutes. Add all the veggies to a large salad bowl and prepare the dressing.

3 tbsp Dijon White Wine Mustard*
1/4 cup of olive oil
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar* - I used my favourite - Raspberry Vinegar 
1 tbsp honey*
Kosher salt and pepper
1 tbsp dried oregano 

*I really didn't measure, but this is probably close to the right measurement. Just be generous and flavour how you like.

Add everything together and whisk it like you've never whisked before.  Drizzle the dressing over the vegetables, and you have yourself a really great salad.

The weekend is coming to us - I can taste it. This weekend is going to be grand. Full of delight. Full of rest, work, fun, love...


1 comment:

Jenny said...

I so needed this post as a big swift kick in my arse!!LOL
Thanks, as usual, for your brilliance.(and btw...ignore my vent...I haven't gotten my usual weekly quota!!;)