|Image from chinayourway.org|
In the very early morning my man is the one who sets the alarm, opens up the house for the day, wakes my boy and sets out on their daily walk with Bono, the family Viszla. But as he travels overseas with Miss M, I am having to rise early and get the day started for us all.
We are blessed to live so close to the river and have an amazing walking track to visit each day. It is pitch black outside right now, so the walks are harder first thing in the morning. On the weekend though we all enjoyed our walk. Bono was able to chase a Wallaby along the track, explore the river and get lost in the woodlands. I was conscious of the fresh air, the space and the quite. A sort of freedom we take for granted. I wonder what China feels like today.
Travelling is a series of movements and waits. There is much excitement in the idea of travelling, but a lot of frustration and anxiety in the reality of it all. Landing in airports in the middle of the night, being woken up by flight staff to be served dinner at 2am, checking in, customs, transfers. All the while waiting for a little glimpse of normality – a bed to sleep in, some food when you are hungry, the sound of a familiar voice. I know these amazing young people are going to have a fabulous time.
We love the Mango Coconut Cream sorbet that we have made in just minutes in our Kuchef Thermo Cook. Thermomix cooks among you would know how easy it is to make fruit sorbets and ices by blending a few simple ingredients.
Most recipes begin by milling some raw sugar (into confectioner’s sugar), adding fruit and ice and blending at high speed. We have done this successfully with raspberries and strawberries, but this time we decided to give some mango a go. The addition of cream or in this instance a tin of coconut cream enhances the favour and helps to combine the sorbet. And to let you in on a secret out family is happy to eat this without the sugar. It will not change the consistency of the sorbet if you leave out the sugar!
The image here is of the mango coconut cream sorbet while it is still in the Kuchef Thermo Cook. We tend to make a batch that feeds all seven people and then some more, so we don’t freeze it for long after it is made. It is prone to becoming hard and icy when refrozen. So, are you keen? I served this mango coconut crew sorbet in mini ice cream cones…perfect for the little mouths we have to feed each day.
Everything could change in a moment. We need to prepare ourselves for good days and bad. Our kids hear a lot about grit and resilience and perseverance. But what about courage? Today I need courage to: keep on parenting when times are tough, to apologise when I do wrong, to be honest and tell someone when I think they are making a bad life choice, to live out the Gospel when the world despises it and to be authentic. What do you need courage for today?
What if your dream is outside the norm? Outside of all of the expectations people have of you? What if the key to being truly happy involved letting go of those ideas and frameworks of belief that have stifled you for so long? What if your Mum is right? What if your dream means you have to work harder, choose differently and face your fears?
If you dare to dream outside of the zone then I would encourage you to find a small group of trusted friends who you can talk with about all of the BIG ideas that come to you in the dark of night. Make the space safe, confidential and trusting. Use this space as a transition from the here and now and to the future over there. Test your ideas with those who care. And dream a little dream each day….
Danah Boyd, a researcher and author of “It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens” recently featured in Time Magazine (March 24, 2014). Boyd’s observations that because today’s children are trapped by helicopter parents, overprotected and over managed, they are more than ever desperate to create their own identity in this high tech digital age.
He says that ‘Protecting kids may seem like the right thing to do, but it undermines the learning that teens need to do as they come of age in a technology soaked world.’
Left with the option of unblocking, stop tracking and monitoring every move the teenager makes online, many parents are nervous and some would argue that they are feeling daunted. But Boyd suggests that teens need their freedom and they need us, parents, friends and family to take collective responsibility and sustain a real interest in what they are doing as they run down the digital road to ‘play. Asking the right questions seems so vital.
Boyd says, ‘…ask your kids what they’re doing online – and why it’s so important to them.”
Maybe someone should be asking the grown ups as well.
Do you get bored with the no bread lunch option? I think it just takes a shift in thinking – the bread does not have to be the hold all, but the plate can be. This was lunch last week when I had an over supply of portobello mushrooms. I sautéed the mushrooms in some olive oil and garlic and tossed in some asparagus and baby spinach. And to add something special to my plate I crumbled some stilton cheese over it all. If you are a blue cheese fan you will know what I mean when I say it made the mushrooms sing! Fabulous no bread lunch, gluten and grain free.
This gorgeous 50s inspired bag is made by my very clever mother. She has up cycled original 50s handles and the body of the bag is made by sewing coloured ricrac onto mattress ticking. If you look closely you can see how she has done it. She made this sometime ago, when my late grandmother was still about. Grandma was also an amazing crafter – she tried her hand at everything! The story goes that even in her frail state at the end she was still able choose the next row of colour my mother was to sew on her bag. This is a great sewing project and one that has many memories sewn into each row.