DESIGNED FROM THE VALUABLE LIFE LESSONS TENDING TO OUR GARDEN TEACHES US
Part III of the Garden Sexy series, sharing recipes and life lessons from the garden.
When people say having a garden is a lot of work, they are referring to when your garden starts growing and so does its enemies, the weeds.
WITH GROWTH COMES CONFLICT, THEN MORE GROWTH
While building your foundation and planting the seed of your new endeavor is time consuming, it isn’t really difficult. When you are growing it, just like when your garden grows, and you face adversity from weeds, furry ones, extreme heat, and dry days, that’s when the real work starts.
Along with our sexy vegetables and herbs, will also be not so sexy weeds. Weeds will try to impede our plants’ growth as they steal soil’s nutrients away from them. And the bigger your garden grows, the more weeds show up. Getting rid of the weeds in your life, like unhealthy habits, limiting beliefs, negative self talk, and even people, is not always easy. It takes time and energy, and it can be painful. It can also be hard to discern what needs to be 86ed, but just how it becomes easier to decipher weeds when your plants mature and start taking shape, it will become more obvious to you as you grow, what needs to be pulled.
It’s hard to let go, but by doing this act of self-love you are nourishing yourself and you will grow stronger, more vital, and be able to offer more to the world.
“I’M IN THE WEEDS!”
One summer while in college I was a waitress at a new restaurant in Ocean City, MD, and as it grew in popularity it became quite chaotic. You’d constantly have seven full tables, of usually families, to service. Families who have been at the beach all day, and they are coming in hot and hangry. Tired from the heat, stressed from lifeguarding their kids, and a little more ill mannered from day drinking. This restaurant was not a fine dining establishment where people expect to wait a little longer for their Old Fashioneds and perfectly braised prime rib. This is not a restaurant where people want to sit at their table for hours sipping Macallan and solving world peace. No, these customers want to get in and get out.
After dropping off food for table #1 and taking note of any missing items, you go to table #2 to take their drink order. While doing so in your peripheral vision you can see table #3’s eyes glaring at you angrily, knowing they are wondering where the hell their food is. You go over, apologize, make up some bs excuse, and say their food will be ready shortly. Then on your way to put the drink order in for table #2 and check on table #3’s food order, you are stopped by table #4 asking, well demanding, drink refills (What the hell were they drinking again?) , table #5 flags you down for ketchup (Great one of those random requests. These are always the hardest to remember.), table #6 asks for their check which they want split three ways as well as to-go boxes (Three ways?! That’s an extra 5 min to itemize each check.), and the shroomed up hostess sits down the Dugger family at table #7 (wtf). Mind you, this is a beach restaurant at a vacation town, so this type of behavior is low key permissible. When this mania happens we proclaim to our fellow servers, “I’m in the weeds!” But being in the weeds, provides more opportunity to make more tips. You learn to manage the weeds with communication with your customers, with transparency and apologies when warranted. You learn to problem solve quickly, multitask and memorize better. You may also ask for help from coworkers.
PULLING WEEDS MIGHT BE UNCOMFORTABLE, BUT IT IS NECESSARY TO REACH YOUR POTENTIAL
As you grow in your business, as you grow in a relationship, you will more than likely experience weeds like adversity, conflict, self-doubt, and anxiety. You need to manage them because they have the potential to harm your potential. Behaviors, habits and certain people that served you when you were a single 20 year old working as a stylist assistant will not serve you in your 40s, boo’d up and a salon owner.
When I created my cookbook, I had to pull the weed of going out to restaurants, bars and parties. Granted knee surgery forced me into homebody era in the beginning, but my commitment to finishing the cookbook had me continuing to pull these weeds. I needed to get up early on the weekends, to start a full day of cooking, food styling and photography. I wanted my body to be rested and my mind to be expansive to make the most of these days I had to myself to create. I also had to pull the weed of doubt so it didn’t steal the nutrient of confidence from me that I needed to persevere to finish the book.
In a relationship, I had to pull out weeds of social media connections. Connections that didn’t serve me and could steal the nutrient of safety from my partner. I had to pull the weed of projection, as the person I was dating should not be held accountable for past partners’ cheating behavior. I had to pull the weed of selfishness, as I now had my partners’ schedule, interests, and goals to consider when deciding on how to spend our time and future planning.
As your garden grows, as your business grows, as your relationship grows, you will experience conflict. It would be easier if you never planted the seed, but then you also wouldn’t experience strength from growth and the joy from harvesting.
Journal prompts following recipe
ON TO THE RECIPE!
To help illustrate the growth and potential from pulling weeds, a dish that contains tomatoes, jalapeños, and gypsy peppers from my garden.
JALAPEÑO HEMP RANCH MANGO VEGGIE COUSCOUS PEPPER CUPS
- 1 BLENDER
- 1 Food Processor
HEMP RANCH DRESSING
- ¾ cup WATER
- 1½ cup HEMP SEEDS
- 1 tbsp LEMON JUICE
- 1 tbsp FRESH DILL FRONDS
- 2 tbsp FRESH PARSLEY LEAVES
- ½ tsp GARLIC POWDER
- ½ tsp ONION POWDER
- 1½ tbsp NUTRITIONAL YEAST
- ½ tsp SEA SALT
MANGO VEGGIE COUSCOUS
- 1 CAULIFLOWER HEAD, cut into florets
- 1 lb CARROTS, peeled
- ½ cup CHERRY TOMATOES
- ½ cup FRESH LEMON BALM, loosely packed optional
- 1 tbsp LEMON JUICE
- 1 MANGO
RAW PICKLED JALAPEÑOS
- 4 JALAPEÑOS
- ¼ cup RICE VINEGAR
- ¾ cup WATER
- ½ tbsp KOSHER SALT
- 1 tbsp HONEY
- GYPSY PEPPERS substitute with bell peppers or lunchbox peppers
HEMP RANCH DRESSING
- Blend till smooth. Add more water or hemp seeds if needed. Will be a thick pourable sauce. Taste and add more seasonings if you want a more robust taste. Pour into a bowl.
MANGO VEGGIE COUSCOUS
- In food processor, pulse cauliflower till it resembles couscous. Place half in mixing bowl.
- Roughly chop carrots and pulse in food processor till it resembles couscous. Add 1/2 to cauliflower.
- Using a small serrated knife, cut tomatoes into apx 8 small pieces. Place in a strainer to drain juices for at least 10 minutes. Add to bowl.
- Peel dice mango small. Add to bowl.
- Cut lemon balm leaves small. Add to bowl.
- Add lemon juice to bowl.
- Mix all veggies in bowl.
- Slice jalapeños into thin wheels. For less spicy, take out seeds. Make sure to wear gloves or wash hands immediately after doing this.
- In a mason jar, add vinegar, water, honey, and salt. Shake jar. Add jalapeños. Cover and shake again. Allow to sit in fridge at least 24 hours.
- Cut peppers in half. Scoop out white insides and seeds with a sturdy teaspoon.
- Dip one end of a PEPPER CUP into the HEMP RANCH DRESSING. Move the pepper around so the dressing covers the entire bottom. Place on plate.
- Using a small spoon, fill pepper with VEGGIE COUSCOUS.
- Top with PICKLED JALAPEÑOS.
Are there weeds you could pull in your relationship with a friend, partner or family member? Do you have a new life goal that you will need to pull weeds in order to accomplish it? Write them down and why you need to pull them. Remembering your why will help you when you find it difficult to pull the weed.