Raising Decent Humans

IMG_0894.JPGWe live in a world where we are taught more to find what we don’t like in others, more than what we should.  We aren’t taught to respect or appreciate differences, rather to convince people to believe, think and feel what we do.  I find this is outdated and tired.  Call me privileged all you want, but I have never and will never like or dislike someone over things about their lives that they cannot control.  Or their reasoning for believing in something, because we all live vastly different lives and feel a certain way over different topics based on our personal life experiences.  This is what I find so incredibly interesting and beautiful about people and why I enjoy reading/writing so much.

When I began this journey to find an agent and hopefully get my book published, I was nervous and scared and worried that I would be disappointed somehow.  Not long after I finally got the courage to start my blog (I may have mentioned this before) an old friend reached out.  I have not seen her in about 10 years.  We went to the same middle school and were pretty close through those younger years.  High school and college we drifted, but seeing her that last time I was just reminded of how much I loved the person she is.

I had a college roommate tell me once that people come into our lives in seasons.  They are here for a time, to teach us something and then move on.  There doesn’t have to be a falling out, but it’s just a high power’s way of showing you something you need to see that you wouldn’t normally on your own.  I believe this woman is one of those people.

If nothing comes from our exchange and the contact she gave me, I will forever feel grateful for her presence in my life.  She didn’t have to read my blog, she’s a working woman across the country with her own busy life.  She didn’t have to connect me to a friend of hers in the industry I’m desperately trying to tap into.  Some people don’t like mixing “business with pleasure”.  But she did.  Something about this act just still brings tears to my eyes and restores my faith in humanity.  SO very often I see people complaining about being wronged.  By a friend, by a family member, by politics.  There’s so much negativity going around that I often have to shut off my social media and decompress.  I will never allow that to be what my family focuses on.  At least while my children still need to be children.

More now than ever I just aim to raise decent human beings.  Yes I want them to be intelligent.  I want them to strive for success and earn it themselves.  I want nothing to be handed to them.  But most of all, I want them to be kind.  I want for them to do something nice for someone just because.  It’s a lost action that I, myself, find so self satisfying.  I find great pleasure in doing small or big things for those I care about.  I like to be polite to everyone because you never know what kind of day someone is having.

I could easily allow a rough morning dampen my mood, causing me to be cold to everyone else I come in contact with that day, but I work hard not to.  For instance, this morning I could have focused my mind on my child insisting her shoes were not on the wrong feet while I cleaned yogurt off the other one’s clothes.  I could easily have stayed annoyed that she refused her plateful of strawberries that she begged for 5 mins before.  I could boil over the blackberry stain on my couch cushion and the bite marks in our brand new shutters from the dog.  But instead, I packed my girls up in the car, drove to the post office and mailed off a package to my sweet, thoughtful friend previously mentioned.  On our way to the post office, Cori began singing along to the radio, making her sister giggle and I felt a wave of happiness rush over me.  This feels a hell of a lot better than stewing over things I can’t really control or shouldn’t dwell on.  Children sometimes reveal to adults how jaded we can become as we age.  How we forget that when we were children ourselves, we didn’t have such a hardened outlook on life.  But as much as I want to throw all my kids outside and hide under the table some days (like right now), others I am so honored to be able to be a mother.  To have created life of the most perfect little people.  To have the chance to teach them not to be assholes.  To stick up for the little girl who was picked on in her elementary class.  To send a friend a card when they know they’re having a bad day.  To do something just to make someone smile.  I think this can form a solid foundation for a decent human being.  Intelligence and ambition aside…

Just

Be

Kind

Thank you, Gina, for being a kind person.  No matter where this journey takes me, I am glad you were a part of it.

And now I leave you with this deliciousness.

Venison EnchiladasScreen Shot 2017-04-09 at 2.09.02 PM.png

1 lb of ground venison (or you can use ground turkey)

1/2 tsp cumin

1 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

1/2 tsp oregano

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp onion powder

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1/2 cup of mild salsa (I like the whole foods brand)

1 cup salsa verde, mild

1 1/2 cup green enchilada sauce

1 yellow onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

8 flour tortillas (I used the carb conscious ones from Target)

1 cup  2% milk monterey  jack cheese, shredded

1 cup 2% milk sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 and grease a 13×9 baking dish.
  2. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in medium pan and toss in diced onion and garlic.  Sauté until opaque. Pour in the green salsa and enchilada sauce and stir until well combined.  Set aside.
  3. Brown venison in another large skillet, season with cumin, paprika, salt/pepper, oregano, and garlic/onion powder.  Pour in the 1/2 cup of mild salsa.
  4. Combine the 2 cheese and pour 1 cup worth in with the meat.  Stir until completely melted and spoon into tortillas.  Roll and place in baking dish open side down.
  5. Pour green sauce over and top with remaining cheese.  Bake for 20 mins.