Mother’s day is a perfect time to reflect on motherhood — appreciating having a world-class mom as a role model, enjoying the friendship of other inspiring mothers, and processing my personal experience raising a precocious little girl. My journey into motherhood was deliberate but to say I had no idea what was to come in the four years since I became a mother, would be a gross understatement. Although my daughter Ella didn’t trigger any of the big changes I’ve made since her birth, she has played a central and motivating role.
Rhubarb is a source of serious nostalgia for me. My mom always had a huge patch of it in our garden when we were young and she made a killer rhubarb crisp. Although I love her rhubarb crisp, I wanted to do something with it that didn’t involve so much sugar and that was more versatile — enter rhubarb compote.
The trending macronutrient of the moment is undeniably fat. We are realizing that this once maligned substance is essential for health and plays a critical role in weight management.
One of the values I’ve worked to re-introduce into my life over the past few years is reading. It cultivates attention, inspires creativity, and exposes me to new ways of thinking about and interpreting the world. I’ve also found that it’s one of the best pre-bed activities — it quiets my mind and leads to better sleep.
The Thai restaurant in Missoula serves a yummy carrot, cabbage, and peanut salad. To pair with the Tom Kha soup we love, I created a variation on that Thai carrot salad. Like all of my recipes, I tried to keep it as simple as possible, using readily available ingredients. This gem comes together in five minutes and can be made vegan.
One of my favorite soups is this Thai classic, Tom Kha. It has fantastic warmth from the ginger, richness from the coconut milk, and lightness from the lemongrass and lime. It really is outstanding. Sometimes I make this soup almost vegan, by using vegetable broth and tofu in place of the chicken — those adjustments are included in the recipe.
Beets are amazing. Cauliflower is fantastic (and is a good substitute for less easily digested garbanzo beans). Why not put them together in a hummus-like spread? Since I couldn’t think of a good reason, I did just that and this gorgeous and tasty concoction was the result.
Humans are notoriously terrible at making decisions. We constantly make bad choices due to a variety of factors — emotions, perceptions, fear. In modern society, an issue that hamstrings our decision-making even further is our preoccupation with perfection.
One of the keys to making health and authentic living simple and sustainable is to get crystal clear on your values — the baseline needs that drive who you are as a person. Ideally, our values inform and direct our actions which determine our habits and priorities — how we allocate our time and resources. Where some of us get hung up is not understanding our values and letting life dictate our priorities. When this happens, we lose control of our time, feel discontent, overwhelmed, and often unable to make changes we want to make.
I turn thirty-five at the end of March. No longer am I an angsty young adult with a deficit of life experience. To celebrate, I gave myself an early birthday gift, a reset. Now I will enter my thirty-fifth year older. Wiser. Stronger. Smarter. Better.