But, it's time. Time to leave the bubble. Time to leave the house. Time to focus on someone else, for a change. Over the past two weeks God has laid four (yes, f-o-u-r) new ministry opportunities at my feet and asked me to pick them up. My husband and I are going to get the ball rolling a little faster on our missions ministry at church. I'm teaching and leading the ESL outreach program at another local church. And a couple other things. It's really exciting, but it's also a little scary. I'm afraid I might get stretched too thin. I'm afraid my house will get messy and we'll go back to rushed dinners because I'll be really busy again. I'm afraid I won't get enough time with my family.
All of these things are pretty unfounded - we're not talking about forty hours a week here. These are all things I love. I'm so excited to use my gifts again, to have some "me" time, and to invest in other people (older than the age of 8 months). Maybe I'm not so much scared as sad - this is the end of a chapter for me, and I won't get to have this chapter again. But, I think we're ready for it. And I know if I'm not, God will prepare me. He always does.
Cooking is like therapy for me. When I was working there were nights I came home, collapsed, and had cereal for dinner a couple hours later. But there were nights when I came home exhausted and decided to make some elaborate multi-course dish I'd never made before. Or other nights I came home totally overwhelmed with things to do and made some familiar meal I loved, and then started my work at 9:00 p.m. As my feet got sore, my mind and heart got calm. I love to create things, and to share them with others. Today was one of those days. It was a good day, but man am I tired. So I made my favorite iced tea, which is 2 green tea bags, one regular tea bag, and one peppermint tea bag put in for just the last few minutes of steeping time. For dinner I made oven-fried pork chops (I'm not giving you a recipe because you can find it on the back of a box), sauteed zucchini and yellow squash (butter, salt, pepper, garlic, skillet), and this:
Fancy-Pants Mashed Potatoes
~5 medium red-skinned potatoes
~a dollop of sour cream
~5-6 tablespoons of butter
~about 1/4 cup of half and half (or a little more milk)
~about 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
~1 1/2ish tablespoons chicken bullion
~garlic powder, salt, pepper
Cut the potatoes into 2-inch cubes, add the chicken bullion, and boil. (This would be even better if you used chicken broth instead of bullion). Once you can mash the potatoes easily with a wooden spoon, drain them and add them back to the pot. Add the butter, sour cream and half and half and mash it with a potato masher. Then stir in the cheddar cheese and spices to taste. You can add chopped chives to the top if you want.