So just recently my boss sent me a note to tell me that he noticed I was not my chipper self, that I needed to “slow down” and that he was worried about me. Immediately, I went into flight or fight mode and started thinking, “OMG do I look like I am dragging my feet? Am I complaining too much?” The list goes on. Then, I immediately had to STOP myself. I had to tell myself, Laura, you are human. You are not perfect. Work is stressful. It is busier than ever. And it is ok to admit you cannot keep up. I need to learn how to accept help when it comes and prioritize my life. Easier said than done, I know, but here I am.
So two things I am working on this week:
Work/ life balance: The sun will rise again the following day and the work will always be there. I need to remember that the Army does “this” to people. And by this “this,” I mean it constantly demands more and more from you and when you finally retire it will spit you out and move on to the next Soldier. It’s sad, but true. I need to remember although my job is commendable, it is not everything. What is important is that I leave work at work and when I come home I am the best wife and mom possible I can be…for that day. Whatever rank I end up with is just that. It will be just three letters (all ranks are abbreviated like MAJ is for Major or LTC is for Lieutenant Colonel). Staying married and being a GOOD mom is far more important to me and I will never do anything to risk that. So what does “this” look like? I am learning to say “no” more and with that comes learning to be ok with that.
Making lists, prioritizing and then letting it go: I have a lot of stuff on my to do lists. There are things on there like write a thank you note to my sister for the boys’ Christmas gifts. And yes it’s March. Sorry Mary, I will get to it soon; I promise. But before that, I must also learn to write things on my list so I do not lose track of them, but then I must “forget it” and not let it torment me. Prioritize what needs to get down and do it, and then save the rest for another day. Again, easier said than done. So what am I tackling this week? Right now besides being a better mom and wife, I prioritized the blog (which has been on the back burner for a few months due to work, see comment 1) and work on something for ME like updating my kitchen. Hello, have you seen those orange marble counters in the backgrounds of all my pictures on social media? I know first world problems, but I am in that kitchen everyday and I want to make that space more usable for my planning. Planning a mini-reno is hard as I search for good deals, but I am positive now, as I make it a priority, IT WILL GET DONE!
So as promised here is 1 of 2 recipes I am posting this week. This Paleo Crock Pot Chicken “Tortilla” Soup was something I threw in the crock pot with what I had in the refrigerator and crossed my fingers it would turn out delicious. Like a lot of my recipes, it is low maintenance. You don’t need outlandish and obscure spices, it takes less than 10 minutes to prep and it is healthy. Win, win, win! Another thing is you can add other ingredients to the recipe based on your diet. If you eat cheese, you can garnish it with cheese or tortillas. The skies the limit.
Let me know what you think about the recipe and, of course, feel free to weigh in on what you do to prioritize your life. Clearly, I need all the help I can get.
- 1 whole chicken, cleaned
- 4 large carrots, peeled and chopped
- 8 celery sticks, ends cut off
- 4 large tomatoes
- 1 yellow onion, roughly chopped
- 4 tablespoons of bouillon
- 6 cups of water
- To garnish: fresh avocado, limes, chili powder, crushed plantain chips, cheese (if you are primal)
- Place your chicken breast side down
- Prepare and chop all your veggies and place around your chicken
- Sprinkle your bouillon seasoning on top of the chicken
- Add water. You need enough water that covers most vegetables but not all. There will be plenty of juices that will come out from your chicken to add flavor to the broth.
- Cook on low for 6 hours or high on 4 hours.
- When the cooking time is done, take out your chicken and "shred" your chicken and set aside.
- Take out your vegetables with a slotted spoon and add to your blender. You can also use an immersion blender. Strain the chicken broth and add it as well to your blender with your vegetables. You may have to do this in two batches since you will have a lot more broth than vegetables.
- Hit blend!
- Serve your soup in a bowl and top with the chicken you set aside. I also garnish the soup with avocado slices and sprinkle with chili powder. Of course it is not "Tortilla" soup without something crunchy. I like to add plantain chips and fresh squeeze lime juice.
- OPTIONAL: The best part of this recipe is you can keep your bones from the chicken and thrown it back in the crock pot and add more water, 2 tables spoons of apple cider vinegar and more vegetables and cook on low for 24 hours to make another batch of homemade bone broth. Yum!
Who is ready to warm up with this delicious vegetable soup?
See your Recipe Book.