Staying Sane: Give it a second chance

If you’ve been reading this regularly you know that I have thrown myself into a new hobby:  gardening.  This is understandable for many reasons.  I’ve been craving a home of my own, a place where I can establish myself and my family in a community, tearing out the old decay from a massive yard and the planning to rebuild and cultivate and grow.   This is also something completely within my control.  If I see a weed, I pick it from the root and it is gone.  If I want to design or plan or hatchet dead branches, I do it and I only have myself to answer to.    So, this new hobby is not too surprising to me – I am enjoying myself despite by pathetic summer crop.

Yes, I tried strawberries, blackberries, blueberries.   All eaten by varmin in the area.  Once I got smart enough to solve the problem with bamboo stakes and deer netting, the season had passed.    My neighbors came over with corn-stalk seedlings.   And these actually grew.  And grew BIG.  Each with several ears of corn.

I would water this corn religiously.   The kids also took part in this duty.   We picked the corn together.   It looked a little suspect, but I was still hopeful.

At dinner, we all bit into our bounty.   And…. it sucked.  Royally.  Even my 2 1/2 year old son who eats dirt, hated this corn.  I didn’t blame the kids.  It was pasty.  It tasted like nothing.   It looked like “Three-Mile-Island corn”.  I cursed at the price of corn in the supermarket (dirt cheap) and the fact that I spent so much time and hope on such a poor crop of anything.

But after dinner, instead of tossing into my compost pile, I decided to cut the corn from the cob and give it a second chance on my own.

Afterwards – I had 3 amazing meals:

  • a corn, black bean and cheese burrito for lunch (delicious)
  • a rice, black bean, and corn combo (used above) over a kale salad
  • brussel sprouts, corn, and kale sautéed with white wine

ALL OF THESE DISHES WERE AMAZING!   Could I have been imagining it?  Yes.  Could my hope been masking the pastiness of the corn?  Yes.  Is it the fact that I buried the corn in other more flavorful foods?   Possibly.   BUT:   Take note.  I ate the corn, and I honestly enjoyed it.

So is there a point to this story?

Give things a second chance.  Take a break and walk away for another day when you have a fresher perspective.  Be persistent but lenient when needed.  Be hopeful.   Or maybe, just drink a lot of white wine.

I hope you all have a terrific week –

– Mama K

Recipe: Chicken over Brown Rice with Steamed Vegetables

This recipe was submitted by Justine Orona from Los Angeles — sounds yummy – and good for you too. I’m also thinking that this recipe might work with a stacking pan set — for example starting the rice in bottom pot and then steaming the vegetables in a steamer pan that fits on top…. I think I have something like this. This would save on some pan space. I’m also wondering if there’s a way to cook the rice with the vegetables thrown in there? Would this work?

Thank you Jusine!!!


  • Any vegetables you like, I use broccoli, carrots cabbage and squash — cut into bite size pieces
  • chicken, preferably breast
  • seasoning: i use Lawreys
  • brown rice


  • Follow brown rice directions
  • As that is starting cut all the vegetables in bite size pieces
  • Steam vegetables
  • Prepare chicken by cleaning off all the fat, polk holes and apply seasoning. Then cut chicken into slices not so thick and put them in the pan or toaster oven. If it is on a pan than add a little bit of oil or butter and put the heat on med to low. If you put it in a toaster oven wrap in tinfoil for 15-20 min.
  • Once everything is finished put rice on the bottom vegetables on the side and chicken on top of the rice so it will have some flavor.

Preparation Time: 10min
Cooking Time: 20min

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