The title of my blog is called "My Journey." Many of you may have assumed the journey I speak of was that as Miss HNN or to Miss VA - but you would be mistaken. It is my journey into womanhood. And what a great journey it is! This is the journey of a young woman learning to be independent (in mind and in responsibility). I have been blessed by my parents because God has blessed them - I have never needed for anything. Some have even called me spoiled...and at this point in my life, looking back, I can't really argue; but, I can say that I was a good kid and deserved what I was given (and trust me, I didn't get everything I wanted). But, with being "spoiled" there have been some skills I have not acquired...
One skill that has eluded me (much to the disdain of a few of the men who have courted me in my time ;) is that I do not cook. Food is a topic that too frequently comes up in conversation 1) because I love it and 2) food is the way to my heart...oops, I meant to a man's heart! - anyways!! I want you to notice that I was careful to say that I do not cook, not that I can not cook: there is a fundamental difference. I was always sure that, if necessary, I could follow the instructions on a simple recipe and put together a meal. The "problem" was that I never needed to cook a meal. How is this possible in 23 years of living you ask? Quite simple, I assure you.
My father has a philosophy in life that you go no where hungry. If I was going to a friend's birthday party and I was instructed that food would be there, he was feeding me before I left the house. If we were going to a cookout, we were eating before we left the house. And I think there were even times we were going out to eat and he made sure we had something to nibble on before we left the house. (Mind you my father is what my mother fondly calls, "a snacker.") If my father was leaving the house in the morning to run errands he would leave a note to instruct me to have cereal or put some waffles in the toaster for breakfast, and then there would be instructions to heat up "this dish" is "said container" whenever I got hungry and he would be sure to be home before dinner. - I remember making jello one afternoon because my mother assured me it was very simple. My father, realizing there was an empty pot in the sink that he did not put there, almost had a mini heart-attack when he realized I had boiled water without him present...
When I got to college, life was easy. The cafe was open at certain hours every day and I made sure to plan my class schedule and social adventures around those times. I woke up early to go eat breakfast (by far, the most important meal of the day!). I dragged my roommate to lunch with me when I could. And cut nap time short, to get to the cafe for dinner. I play no games with my food.
The summer internships I had - one in NY and one in NOVA were God-sents. My time in NY I lived with my Grandmother - she knows I don't cook; so, breakfast and dinner were provided for me without fail (Love you, Grams!). Living in NOVA, Megan - the lady who has been so kind to let me live with her - also makes me dinner whenever she's home (and I can count on one hand the number of evenings she wasn't last summer). Oh, but this summer is different... because I'm on my journey!
I decided "enough with the excuses," it was time to get my act together! Sooner or later Megan will kick me out (LOL) and I am not about to live off pasta (anyone can cook pasta). God set up the scenario - he sent Megan out of the country on business for a week: leaving me to fend for myself! I have bought vegetables before, so that was no issue - but you should have seen me in the meat section trying to decide what cut of beef would make my inner fat-lady happy!!! (I went with thinly cut rib-eye, in case you were wondering.)
So, with a little help from mum (thank goodness for the telephone), a few random recipes online (allrecipes.com, foodnetwork.com, food.com) I made the following meals....
|Tacos - Brown the meat, cut up the veggies, & LOAD on the cheese!|
|Couscous (cooks in boiling water, I think it's better than rice), pan-seared chicken (called mum for that one), and pan-seared asparagus (takes longer to cook, if you like them soft, than I thought it would).|
|Baked potato (also takes forever to cook!), steamed broccoli, and fresh, cut tomato.|
|My favorite meal of the week: the leftover couscous, rib-eye (because it was thin it cooked faster than I thought, still good though), and brussel sprouts (put them in the oven, covered in olive oil, and garlic salt).|
|Leftovers: Boil an egg, cut up half an avocado, and throw in any leftover meat from dinner that you have = Great salad for lunch.|
|Extra ground beef (or any meat)? No tortillas left? Want more of a snack-feel? It's a taco salad!|
See! I told you I could follow a simple recipe ;)