Tending To Life, A Gardener’s Approach

I spent Sunday morning weeding my garden. Though the garden is relatively small, it took close to two hours to fully de-weed and groom the space so my vegetable plants have their ideal room to grow. As sweat rolled down my back, I relished in the physical exertion of the work and started to think how similar Life is to a garden.

Aspects of Life — relationships, business, spirituality, personal mindset — are like a garden, ripe with potential to bloom into something spectacular. All are essential parts of a healthy livelihood.

As with a garden, though there may be prospect of future blossoms and delicious produce, the probability for weeds to also take root. Sometimes we allow those weeds into our lives, whether they be in the form of misguided advice, distrustful people, personal faults, or any other negative force. If we are not careful, those weeds may begin to overtake what once was a thriving and happy space.

For too long I mistook those weeds as indicators of something being wrong in my Life. It has taken me time to see the weeds for what they truly are though: opportunities to show how much I truly care for the beautiful parts of my life. Weeds, just like negativity in life, are going to grow. With hard work, nourishment, and a watchful eye, though, even the most weed-filled garden can be pruned.

Cheers to a more nurturing and caring lifestyle, my friends!

“Once Upon A Time” Versus Forever & Always

A Facebook post came across my Newsfeed yesterday. The original author, Abbey Elizabeth Boone, stressed how important it was to wait to find someone who appreciates you and who you can appreciate back. Her simple little blurb was picked up by Love What Matters and has been shared numerous times, cementing its purpose to thousands of readers.

I encourage you to read Abbey’s original post (at the link above). Her comparison between her past toxic relationships to her current, healthy one made me smile. Today is G’s and my second wedding anniversary. Two years ago we stood in front of our loved ones and expressed vows of unconditional love, unfaltering companionship, and endless date nights. Marriage has been the best adventure of my life so far, even if it is also the most difficult. G and I have waged through a number of wars only to come out stronger in every situation. And that is the greatest difference between my own past relationships and present one.

So here is my own little version of my “Once upon a times” compared to my “Forever and Always”:

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Vegan Egg Rolls

Servings: 12 egg rolls
Time: 25 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 pkg Vegan egg roll wraps (I use Nasoya)
  • 1 tsp minced ginger
  • 2 cups cabbage slaw
  • 2 Tbsp tamari sauce OR coconut amino acids
  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • Sweet chili sauce, for dipping
  • Chives OR green onions, for garnish
  • Cooking oil as needed (I stick with EVOO)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat skillet with enough EVOO to simmer ginger until fragrant
  2. Add cabbage slaw and cook 2-3 minutes, stir in tamari/amino acids, remove from heat
  3. Allow to cool before scooping about 2 Tbsp of filling onto 12 egg roll wraps
  4. Fold wraps: bottom corner over filling, then fold in side corners, and roll to wrap tight. Brush top flap/corner with water in order seal.
  5. Heat oven to 400°F. Place rolls on a baking sheet coated with non-stick cooking spray. Lightly brush rolls’ tops with EVOO and bake until golden brown (about 10-12 minutes.)
  6. Serve with sweet chili sauce and chives/green onions.

Intentional Look Into My Emotions

With the abundance of time the world seems to be allowing me, I’ve been taking time in the mornings to meditate. This meditation has been crucial for my overall mental well-being during this challenging year. I’ve been searching my soul, talking with God, and reflecting on my well-being with deeper intention. I am a firm believer that my purpose on Earth is to share God’s grace and become the best reflection of His goodness as possible. My morning meditations have been eye-opening to areas I see a need for more effort and work to reach the ideal person I wish to become.

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#BlackLivesMatter

“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.” Proverbs 31:8-9

I don’t want to be silent, but I lack the words to express exactly how I feel. I have never woken and been in fear to go about my life due to the color of my skin. I have never thought twice before going for a jog, decorating for a party, or asking someone to put a leash on their dog in a public park. I don’t receive questioning looks as I walk through my neighborhood. I’m not watched step for step every time I enter a store. And I now realize this is not a luxury every individual throughout my country shares.

Over the past week, I have been doing my due diligence to listen to the outcry of my friends and neighbors. An outcry for justice. An outcry for peace. An outcry for equality. And throughout this time, I’ve come to four definitive conclusions:

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