I grew up in Louisiana. Gumbo, Okra and Tomatoes, Jambalaya, Etoufée, Fried Turkey, Couvillon, Bouillabaisse, Crawfish, Shrimp, Snapper, Catfish, Pistolettes, PoBoys, Muffalettas, Crêpes, Sun Tea and more were just a regular part of life. One of the first things I remember doing as a kid was serving as my mother’s sous chef, along with my sisters. I also took home economics in junior high and high school so I picked up a lot of information that I still use, now to teach my children to make healthy choices for themselves now that they are almost grown. One of the first cookbooks I remember reading in my mother’s collection was the Betty Crocker Cookbook. Recently I found a copy at a used bookstore. I expected to have to tweak most of the recipes, but a lot of them are still useful and nutritional the way they are. Thanks Mom.
This is not my herb garden, but a couple of days ago I decided that I want to get my herb garden going. Again. The last time I grew stuff I had cilantro, basil, lettuce and a few other things growing in the kitchen and the yard. I think all of the after school activities my children (and I) had going on diverted the focus I used to devote to it. I think this idea has been with me since I was at my parents’ house a few years ago for my sister’s wedding, where there were these amazing, regal okra plants growing in the back yard. They had to have been about 8 or 9 feet tall. They most beautiful thing about them, to me, was how they towered as a testament to the people my parents have always been.
When I was a little kid, Mom grew strawberries in the back yard. She has grown roses, succulents, ferns – and with Dad- peas, beans, tomatoes, potatoes, cucumbers and a huge fig tree that still stands in the back yard. They have cooked, canned and frozen some and given their friends or people in the community in need some. Some of my earliest and fondest memories of my South Louisiana family include my grandmother’s canned figs, munching on fresh sugar cane and the tons and tons of pecans we would take home with us from my great uncle’s orchard. A lot of times, I have these ideas that I think are great, new ideas, when they turn out not to be new ideas at all. At least not to me.
The great thing about forgiveness, to me is the more I receive, the more I want to share it with others. I am sorry that it has taken me the greatest amount of time and effort to learn to forgive myself, but I am thankful that it is possible and becoming easier with time.
Last night I was up really late and I’m not one of those people who that works for. Even when I was in high school and college, I needed my sleep. I did one or two all-night parties and one or two all-night study sessions, decided it was not a big deal (definitely not worth the crash that came afterward) and went back to going to bed early. I did getting up early way better than I did staying up late. I still do. I’ve managed to keep up with everything pretty well today but I’ve seen one or two things slip, like while I was trying to get the kids’ breakfast and when I almost forgot to eat something myself. Now I’m really starting to feel like it is going to be an early night. Yawn. Stretch. Good Night.