Food For One (Toasted Pimento Cheese on Wasa)

My daughter and I prepare most everything we eat.

As I was making this tonight, I wondered how many other people prepare a meal for one. It’s easier to grab something at a restaurant, or fast food chain, but for me, that gets expensive, and I’m particular about what goes in my body.

pimentocheese
Toasted Pimento Cheese and Taheebo Tea

My tried and true cookbook is 100 Days of Real Food.

Have you ever gone by the recipe, and it didn’t make enough, or it made too much? I haven’t found that happening with these. I feel successful when I cook.

This recipes are designed for 2 adults and 2 children, (her family), and I made this in its entirety, to have some later. The recipes are easily cut in half, for when my daughter is not here, or make the whole thing, and freeze what’s left.

After leaving North Carolina, and moving to Texas, it was difficult to find good Pimento Cheese. The author of this cookbook is from Charlotte, NC, and she knows my heart.

Use Organic ingredients if you can:

2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese (I grate half smoked and half sharp cheddar. Tillamook brand)

1/2 cup cream cheese softened

3 Tablespoons diced, jarred pimento, with juice (I use olives instead)

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon Paprika

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 or 2 drops of hot sauce

Whole-grain crackers, for serving (such as Ak-Mak brand. I use Wasa)

Mix all ingredients, except crackers, with a wooden spoon.

The original recipe says to spread the crackers, lay them on a baking sheet, and bake at 350 degrees for 5 to 7 minutes.

Instead, I lightly broil them until melted. Along with my evening meal, or before bed, I drink a cup of Taheebo Tea to elevate my immune system. A couple of droppers full, in a cup of hot water with honey is very soothing. Enjoy!

The Final Day of A Better Way To Live~Day 17

My hope is that you get this quicker than I did. It took me over half my life to find this truth.

Realize that true happiness lies within you. Waste no time and effort searching for peace and contentment and joy in the world outside. Remember that there is no happiness in having or in getting, but only in giving. Reach out. Share. Smile. Hug. Happiness is a perfume you cannot pour on others without getting a few drops on yourself.

happinessI have had a lot of levels of success, and all the material objects that brings. None of that brought me happiness. If it did it was a fleeting moment like driving the car off the showroom floor. It was temporary like the new car smell.

I finally realized if I was happy on the inside, I was successful. Success doesn’t bring happiness; happiness brings success in every area of my life.  Giving of myself to others bring even more happiness. A friend once told me, “You can’t give away what you don’t have, but you must give away what you want to keep.”

Let the goodness on the inside of you flow onto others. It will come back to you in such abundance, you’ll never be able to give it all away.

 

 

 

A Better Way To Live~Day 16

I have made my share of mistakes on this earth. The good news is, I have learned to take my mistakes as life’s little lessons, and not forget them. Not by dwelling on the past by no means, but pausing to reflect before making a decision. Have I been here before? How did it turn out? If it didn’t work the first time, don’t do it again. Learn.

Search for the seed of good in every adversity. Master that principle and you will own a precious shield that will guard you well through all the darkest valleys you must traverse. Stars may be seen from the bottom of a deep well, when they cannot be discerned from the mountaintop. So you will learn things in adversity that you would have never discovered without trouble. There is always a seed of good. Find it and prosper.

dearpastI love the way God never gives up on me. I know I’ve disappointed Him and myself, but you can’t stay there my friend. He picks me up, brushes off the dirt, and helps me stand upright to try again.

Make good choices. I usually pray and ponder for at least 24 hours if it’s a big decision. Sometimes I take days. I don’t talk to many people, and get bombarded with opinions. If I let time pass and continue to ponder, usually something will occur that let’s me know if I’m on the right path or not.

It’s how we learn. Just like a toddler learning to walk. They have to tumble and fall to know what that feels like. They soon learn it feels better to walk and not fall, so they get better at walking.

God allows me to make a mistake, just so I can see how good He truly is. Something good always come out of it. Things may not turn out the way I planned, but isn’t that even better? Isaiah 55:8 says, “My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the LORD. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.” Thank you Jesus!

 

 

A Better Way To Live~Day 15

I am so blessed that God prompted me to do this series through the holiday’s. Running into any Grinch’s? Lol

Never allow anyone to rain on your parade and thus cast a pall of gloom and defeat on the entire day. Remember that no talent, no self-denial, no brains, no character, are required to set up a fault-finding business. Nothing external can have any power over you unless you permit it. Your time is too precious to be sacrificed in wasted days combating the menial forces of hate, jealousy, and envy. Guard your fragile life carefully. Only God can shape a flower, but any foolish child can pull it to pieces.

daisyMy daughter reads all my Blog’s and got her feelings hurt a little over the flower comment at the end. Who doesn’t enjoy plucking the petals from a daisy? So, we’re omitting ‘foolish child’, and replacing it with ‘anyone.’

The main message is in the first sentence, don’t allow anyone to rain on your parade. We are around a lot of family this time of year and there’s always someone negative, or non enthusiastic over our accomplishments. Do let them rub off on you! They have to live with themselves everyday and your time with them is temporary. They can only affect your mood if you allow them. You cannot change them. They have to want to change, so pray for God to work on them. That’ll do it!

Hopefully, you’re not allowing the naysayers to be a part of your world. Pick and choose your circle carefully, because they are the ones that will influence your life the most. Surround yourself with positive people who love, appreciate,  inspire, motivate and encourage you! Give back to them freely all the goodness you receive. Your life will manifest into full bloom and so will theirs. Merry Christmas.

 

A Better Way To Live~Day 14

This is the time of year we reflect on our accomplishments for the year. Have you accomplished what you wanted?

You will achieve your grand dream, a day at a time, so set goals for each day-not long and difficult projects, but actions that will take you, step by step, toward your dream. Write them down, if you must, but limit your list so that you won’t have to drag today’s undone matters into tomorrow. Remember that you cannot build your dream in 24 hours. Be patient. Never allow your day to become so cluttered that you neglect your most important goal-to do the best you can, enjoy this day, and rest satisfied with what you have accomplished.

dreamsI’m sitting with my daughter, and we’re making a list of goals for 2015. This is phenomenal to me! She is at the age to take them seriously, and I’ll get to watch her take the stepping-stones God lays out toward her dreams. She’s young enough where she’s just getting started on life, and I’m mature enough where I’ve done a lot of life, including helping others achieve their goals.

I’m at the age now where I’m ready to step out and do a couple of things I’ve always wanted to do. Early in sobriety, I wanted to write a book to encourage others. Years later, I’m ready to write that book. My daughter is the artist, but I love working with my hands. Stained glass has always intrigued me because I love light and color. I’m going to try my hand at making stained glass.

Both of these have income potential, but that is not the reason I’m doing it. I’ll do it for the joy it brings and pray that they will bring peace and joy to others.

Is there something you’ve always wanted to do?

dreamsLet me encourage you today to choose one and add it to your goals for 2015. In the past I have allowed so much of life to run me. No more. It’s time to draw a line in the sand and accomplish a dream. Something that you’ve always wanted to do. What does that look like to you? Please share.

A Better Way To Live~Day 13

I sure am grateful to wake up sober each morning. After 16 years, I still recall that sick, hung over feeling of my drinking days. Yes, just to wake up and be sober is a great start to my day.

Welcome every morning with a smile. Look on the new day as another special gift from your Creator, another golden opportunity to complete what you were unable to finish yesterday. Be a self-starter. Let your first hour set the theme of success and positive action that is certain to echo through your entire day. Today will never happen again. Don’t waste it with a false start or no start at all. You were not born to fail.

giftMy morning sets the tone for the day. Thanking God for my day is how I begin. Each day we are given, is a fresh start, a new beginning. We have the opportunity to finish a project started the day before, like painting a room, but we don’t bring that day with us.

Everything that happened yesterday, is in the past. It’s gone, so let it go. Focus on today, and the ‘right now’, and allow the gift of the present to flow into your life. We cannot see what’s in front of us, if we’re looking behind us. Let it go, and make room for what God has in store for you today. Today is a gift, that’s why it’s called the present. It’s your job to open it.

A Better Way To Live~Day 12

Are you more attuned to the little things, or the big things in life?

Never neglect the little things. Never skimp on that extra effort, that additional few minutes, that soft word of praise or thanks, that delivery of the very best that you can do. It does not matter what others think, it is of prime importance, however, what you think about you. You can never do your best, which should always be your trademark, if you are cutting corners and shirking responsibilities. You are special. Act it. Never neglect the little things.

littlethingsYears ago, I was looking out my patio door at the swimming pool in the backyard. The water had a hint of green to it, which was not a good thing. Looking back on it now, there were a series of little things going on that made me notice the big thing.

Maybe the water wasn’t circulating enough, or the salt was low and not able to produce enough chlorine. There was a checklist that I went through in my mind, but had to go out to the equipment to investigate.

There is usually a little thing not functioning at its highest potential, that causes a breakdown in the rest of the natural order of things. We see it everyday, and if ignored, will cause a domino effect and after time, a really big thing will be staring you in the face.

Like your vehicle telling you it’s time for an oil change. Someone said recently, “Oil is cheap. Parts are expensive.”

For me to be fulfilled it’s all the little things someone does that brings me to overflowing. It’s not a big, expensive act anymore, it’s just the little things of caring in everyday life that bring me joy. I notice the little things, and hope today that you will too, because they are indeed the big ones.