Sunday, May 20, 2012

Graduation Day

My niece is graduating from High School next week.  In her honor, I will be visiting her in Florida.  It is, truly, a time to celebrate.  She has worked hard for this achievement, and it is one of life's big milestones.  It also gives me a chance to reflect on my own high school graduation (a mere 21 years ago) and where, exactly, I've come from there.

In some ways, I've stagnated.  I haven't achieved many of the goals I had back then.  I'm not a pilot, like my dad.  I haven't become a published author.  I only completed one year of college sports.

In other ways, I've come far.  I've been married for 15 years, I have 2 lovely children.  I've run two marathons and many half marathons and triathlons.  I've trained 4 service dogs.   And I have a life of which I am proud and in which I am happy.

Life takes you where it takes you, there isn't always a plan, and the path seldom follows the plan that is set as of completion of 12th grade.  I've learned to cook.  I've learned to snowboard.  I've become a women's breastfeeding consultant, and a doula.  I've learned some life lessons.  I've learned to live in the now, and not wish the time away.  I've learned to live a healthy lifestyle.

I'm fitter now than I was then, even as a varsity athlete.  I'm thinner now than I was then, and I make much healthier choices.  And I still have room for improvement, as we all do.

This menu will only go to Wednesday.  Then Dinner Diva Menus is taking a vacation until June.  Cook well, my friends.

Sunday: Leftovers

Monday: Sweet Orange Salmon, Steamed Broccoli, Steamed Brown Rice

Tuesday: Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Mango Salsa, Baked Sweet Potatoes, Grilled Red Bell Peppers

Wednesday: Stir Fry Asian Veggies, Steamed Quinoa

Stir Fry Asian Veggies (adapted from P90X2 Nutrition Guide)

1 T. sesame oil
3 t. bottled minced garlic
1 T. bottled minced ginger
8 mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 med. red bell pepper, thinly sliced
2 cups broccoli florets
1 C. shredded cabbage (or coleslaw mix)
1 C. shelled edamame (I've learned this is called Makimame)
2 T. lime juice
2 T. soy sauce
3 T. orange juice
1 T. sesame oil
2 t. pure maple syrup
1 T. cornstarch
1 1/2 C. cooked quinoa
sea salt, to taste

Heat sesame oil in large skillet or wok over med heat.  Saute garlic and ginger about 1 minute.

Add mushrooms and saute 3-4 minutes.

Add bell pepper, broccoli, cabbage, and edamame.  Cover, turn heat down to low, and steam veggies for 3-4 min.

Meanwhile, in small bowl, combine lime juice, soy sauce, orange juice, sesame oil, maple syrup, and cornstarch and whisk together.

Pour lime juice mixture over veggies in skillete and let cook 2 more minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.  Sauce will begin to bubble and thicken.  Don't over cook veggies; they should be crisp and brightly colored.

Season with sea salt and serve over quinoa.