Thursday, June 7, 2012

Pinterest Recap 1 - Recipe Edition

Since I have this extra time this summer, I have been cooking up a storm.  And I love it.  My mom always laughs because she is an awesome cook, but when I was growing up, I never took the time to try to learn from her.  When I went to college, I literally didn't know how to "brown the meat" or "boil water". Well maybe I knew how to do that, but still I probably had never done it before.  I always laugh so hard at Friends when Rachel is making the trifle, and she says "What? Cooking is easy! If it says to boil two cups of salt, you just boil two cups of salt!" For the longest time, I didn't even get why that was funny!  But things have changed since I have grown up in these 11 years since starting college, and now I love to cook!  Here are three of the recipes I have tried this week from Pinterest, all are very healthy and turned out to be delicious.

Grilled Corn and Bean Salad
This is from "Cooking Light" Magazine, and it actually is called "Pinto, Black, and Red Bean Salad with Grilled Corn and Avocado" but I shortened the name up a bit for obvious reasons.  This salad is just so good - it doesn't take too long to make, and it is really fresh and healthy.  It also keeps in the fridge for about 3-4 days which is awesome.  It makes a big batch, and you can eat it as a salad for lunch, side at dinner, wrapped up in a piece of iceberg lettuce, etc.  I made it for a BBQ, and then have made it twice since just for Aaron and I to eat during the week.  The grilled corn makes it delicious!

Turkey Taco Lettuce Wraps
These are from Skinny Taste and they could not have been any easier to make.  And we loved them!  Instead of all the spices (there are 6), I just used a packet of taco seasoning, and it worked great.  But, I am sure it might taste a bit better if you use all the ingredients too.  Sorry I had to use the website pic because I forgot.  Two of these wraps (without cheese and sour cream) are only 4 weight watchers points total.

Crock Pot Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Um. Amazing. Skinny Taste is great!  I loved these...they are so good and I can't believe they are healthy!  I made the low-fat blue cheese dressing with these too, and it was really tasty!  I used Frank's for the hot sauce, like she suggests, and it was perfect.  Not too spicy, but definitely has a kick.  I will for sure be making these again.  It makes 6 wraps that are only 3 weight watchers points each (not that I am counting right now), plus a few more if you add cheese and the dressing.  Plus, this is a really easy recipe to make.
Hope you enjoy as much as we did!!  Let me know if you ever try any and tell me how it goes!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

reflecting on the last six months...marriage style

We have been married a little over 6 months now!  In some ways that time has flown by, and in others it feels like we have been married longer than that.  I wanted to reflect a bit on what I have learned these past 6 months of being married.  They have been the happiest 6 months of my life, no doubt, but not the easiest.  And that is OK.  I struggle to post this, because I don't necessarily want to be so transparent, but I have had found courage knowing that maybe others will understand this.  I obviously have thousands of lessons still to learn, but this is what I've got so far.

Looking back on our premarital class, we spent a long time talking about our expectations for each other and how dangerous those can be when they are left unfulfilled and not talked about ahead of time.  And I think we both did a pretty good job of laying out our expectations and limiting the disappointments that can come with those.  My biggest surprise so far in marriage has not been the expectations that Aaron and I have for each other, but the expectations that I put on myself

I guess when I dreamed of being married, I thought I would be this cute, little housewife (with a full-time job).  That I would get all of the cleaning, cooking, exercising, teaching, family-time, church, and social-life done with no problem...because let's face it, I wanted to be the best wife I could possibly be.  And do I look cute when Aaron gets home?  Nope - not after a day full of 3rd graders! I think I was hit with a huge reality check around Christmas when I realized that I let our house get messy, shopping was done at the last minute, and I hadn't had the time to do all of the cooking and entertaining that I wanted to, I didn't look cute all the time, and our life just didn't look like I expected it to.  I didn't want to disappoint myself, and I really didn't want to disappoint Aaron, but it was hard to juggle everything I thought I could be, along with teaching.  But for some reason, being a good wife to me meant having a home-cooked, healthy meal on the table in my perfectly clean home every night and that was not my reality.

One night, I just fell apart, exhausted and disappointed in myself and how much of a failure I was.  If I couldn't handle it all now, how would I ever be able to be a mother and add kids into the mix?  Where was all of this energy supposed to come from?  Let me tell you how blessed I am to have my husband, who God designed so perfectly for me.  I found out Aaron and I didn't share the same expectations for me.  He didn't think I would take everything on when we both work.  He is my perfect balance for my type-A, have to worry about everything personality.  And he doesn't compare me to other wives, which I struggle with myself.  In fact, if you asked him about the last 6 months, he would honestly not have even noticed a problem (minus my fall apart episode).  He honestly thinks I am the best wife ever and tells me so daily.  And I believe that he thinks that.

And God tells me the same thing.  His Word says that "He created my inmost being; knitted me together in my mother's womb."  He knows my weaknesses and strengths - he knows me inside and out.  Lord, "I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful.  I know that full well." The Lord created me with my faults, and with my strengths.  I think C.S. Lewis' mentor, George MacDonald, sums it up best:

"I would rather be what God chose to make me than the most glorious creature that I could think of; for to have been thought about, born in God's thought, and then made by God, is the dearest, grandest, and most precious thing in all thinking."

With the freedom that summer brings, I am doing my best to be the wife I thought I would be when I got married. I will go back to normal Becky come August.  And I will rest in contentment, knowing God and Aaron have approved of me unconditionally.