Monday, February 28, 2011

San Jose del Cabo

Walking on the beach.....

View from our room.....
View from the Hilton looking south...
Aunt Danielle with her biggest fan....
View from our cabana at the pool.....
Swim up bar!
No Kindle..just a book for me
Our second dinner at Las Ventanas
Las Ventanas!
Me and M

Just flew in today. I was so sad to leave beach paradise. I did not bring my computer on this trip, so only checked my email a few short times during my stay. It was nice to be unplugged. We stayed at the Hilton San Juan Cabo San Lucas. For what it was, it was perfect. Beach and pool and atmosphere all blended together evenly. I always had in my mind that Cabo was a touristy, party spot, but our week was restful, full of great food and lots and lots of relaxation. I had a very important dream while I was there and it helped me tremendously with my grief and I felt some pretty profound completeness around my marriage ending. I felt more like myself (or rather my new self) than I have in almost 5 months. I ate, swam, thought, wondered, rested and remembered who I am after throwing off some big sad stories I have been carrying around that I just don't need anymore. On the airplane today M and I were talking about how we are moving in 3 days. She said "Mama, aren't you excited? This is what your dreamed about!" While I did not know what dream she was recalling, I have noticed that she has been very symbolic lately, so I took in deeply what she said. I realized that yes, my life radically shifting has been bone chillingly scary, but once I get past that,  I am getting the life I have always wanted. Truth, honesty, love, authenticity, my sweet daughter, choices, fabulous friends, health, and community. This trip helped me see that. This trip helped me see my beauty. And from those places comes my passion for creating food and healing and the journey we all take to nourish ourselves.
Well back to the nitty gritty. Here are some funny observations I had on this trip though:

Everyone and their brother except me has a Kindle at the Hilton
Getting a pool chair during a busy week at this Hilton requires secret ninja moves
Swimming lessons for a six year before a big beach trip is worth its weight in gold
Packing 4 boxes of crackers and snacks in our suitcases for the trip was a great idea
Las Ventanas is my dream destination resort...hands down
I have officially recovered from my fear of food borne illness in Mexico
I would love to bring all my girlfriends here asap
I love deserts

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Cowpeas with Miso and Arugula Salad

Here are some photos of the ordered chaos. I am almost finished!!
Yesterday I picked up my grain share and there was (eureka!) a small jar of hand-crafted miso!! It is wonderfully mellow and salty. It is also soy free; made with purple cowpeas instead. Along with that was a one pound bag of Nigerian Cowpeas. They are considered a field bean or a shelling bean. I would interchange these in this recipe with black-eyed peas, mung beans or aduki beans which are in the genus Vigna along with cowpeas. This genus of beans are creamy, small beans that are easy to cook (60-80 mintes un-soaked). Because everything is almost packed here at my house, I decided to cook these beans that are on hand and thought the wonderful mellow miso would be a interesting flavor component. Baby arugula is at my coop and I knew that the peppery, lemon taste it has would be the perfect contrast. This dish has 5 ingredients! I topped it with the aged cheese also from my grain share, but any aged parmesean would work. I am glad it pulled together because M opened the fridge today and told me "Mama! We have no food in our house!" A favorite pastime of mine is to search the cabinets that have "nothing" in them and find a wonderful dish to make.
My small new house is painted now. The curtain rods are up, and it has been filled with love from all my friends who are showing up in work clothes to help M and I make our new place cozy. I can't wait to show all of you. I am saying goodbye to modern and hello to vintage. I will be honest and tell you Valentines Day was a sad day. I bought my little girl a dozen pink roses though. Showed up at kindergarten pick-up with the bouquet and she was pretty excited. Lemonade out of lemons. I can't do a thing to change people or their choices, but I can change my relationship to them and myself.  I am leaving for Cabo on monday. I am bringing my camera, but have not decided about bringing laptop or not. So in case we don't talk until I get back, I will thinking about you.

Cowpeas with Miso and Arugula Salad
makes 4 servings

1 cup dried cowpeas (or mung, blackeyed or aduki beans)
2 cups water (for cooking beans)
4 tsp. miso paste
2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup shaved aged parmesean cheese
4 cups baby arugula

Examine beans for rocks before you cook them. Wash them if they are dusty.
Cook beans and water on low simmer covered for 1 hour. Taste for tenderness.

Toss arugula in a bowl with two tsp. of olive oil. Toss with your clean hands to coat all the pieces.

Shave the parmesean so you have at least 4 good shaved pieces for each serving.

After peas are cooked, scoop around 1/2 cup in each bowl and stir in 1 tsp. of miso for each bowl. After mixing in miso, top with arugula and then with cheese.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Moving Update!

Whew! I am going to take photos to show how chaotic things are in my house with packing, painting and saying lots of goodbyes to our dream home. Three weeks until we set sail to our new abode. I have been diligently looking in town for a rental for M and I (and Charlie our cat) for weeks now. Finally last week a place fell into our lap and it is 4 doors down from my dear friend Kate. What luck! I am in awe at how the universe is working. I manifested the exact vision I had plus more. So, I am cramming in driving back and forth from town, packing, painting, cleaning, organizing and being a mama into each of these pretty winter days we are having. Cooking has taken a backseat. Last night and tonight for dinner was an arugula salad with a piece of toast and an egg. I thought for sure that M. would question egg and toast for dinner two night in a row, but she is on board with the craziness of the moment.  I am planning magical things to cook in my new, super-cute vintagey house though. It has an old fashioned white stove with six burners, two ovens and two broilers. I told my new landlord I like to cook. A lot.
So I promise to keep you all in the loop as things unfold. My friends and twin sister are working overtime to help my transition go smoothly. I could not do this alone. I know the life I thought I had was not really built on solid ground. Now my home base is myself, so there is never a question if it is solid. I have noticed that self compassion is one of the most solid feelings I have ever had. It just took a total disaster to wake up to my own loving self.  I get to fill up my cup until it overflows. I never need to look outside of myself again to be filled up.
My sister invited M and I to go to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico this year with her. Of course the trip is the week before I move. So, I plan to have everything related to my move completely wrapped up before I get on the plane. I am feeling good about this trip. I am thinking there won't be as many tears as the last couple of months. I am thinking that watching my little girl swim in the pool and say "watch me, watch me" is going to be a big treat.


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