You know what’s hard? Quantum Physics. Aerospace Engineering. Contemplating the existence of the space-time continuum. And also bedtime. Specifically bed time with a 2.5 year old. It is essentially like herding cats…no wait, FERAL cats. Motherhood is like nothing I’ve ever experienced before–just when you think you have the hang of something, kid up and changes his ways and you’re left standing there scratching your head wondering what the hell just happened. No wait, you know what it’s really like? What I’d imagine negotiating with terrorists to resemble.
Bedtime. That once long awaited time of day, where your child is the sweet loving person that you raised him to be. Reading beautiful stories, lots of snuggling, and whispered “I love yous” while you quietly shut the door and go enjoy the rest of your evening with a glass of wine and some mindless Netflix. Let me tell you, those days are long gone. That was when your kid had no opinions. Mostly no WORDS to convey those opinions even if he wanted to. Now…NOW, now he has all the opinions. And all the requests. And all the bargaining chips of a Premium Level 5 Top Tier Political Lobbyist for Monsanto or something like that (if that even exists).
A peek into our household evening…
“Bear, eat your food buddy.”
“NO. I don’t want to. I want to play.”
“Bear, come sit at the table right now and eat your food. PLEASE” (through clenched teeth)
“NO! I’M PLAYING.” (evil eye darts)
“Bear, I’m giving you to the count of 5 to come sit down and eat or you are going to your room…1…2…3…4…”
“OKKKKK! Can I bring a toy?”
“No, no toys at the table.”
(long, drawn out whine) “YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS.”
(long, drawn out whine) “YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSS.”
“Fine! ONE TOY. Now go pick it and get to the table.”
(Meanders over to the toy box and dumps everything out, slowly contemplating which toy is the perfect toy for dinner time)
“BEAR. NOW BUDDY. You’re not going to get any dessert if you don’t hurry it up.”
(long, drawn out whine)” I’M HURRRRRYIIIINNNNNGGGG.”
Repeat steps 1-10 with continued threats, negotiations and counting. 1 hour later,
SUCCESS a half eaten plate that you had to spoon feed him, and negotiate every bite to win. Then you know what comes next? THE SAME PROCESS ALL OVER AGAIN TO GET HIM IN THE GODFORSAKEN BATHTUB. Which, by the way, once you finally convince him to get in good luck trying to get him out. It’s like this weird relationship that all kids in the history of mankind have with baths. It’s a true love/hate thing.
Then bedtime. My favorite. The back and forth–one story..no two stories, ok, ONE MORE STORY. Can I have a drink? This is old milk, I need new milk. I’m hungry. I need a snack. I need to go potty (after he JUST went). I need one more hug. Can you hold me? There’s monsters, I see them! Can I see Daddy? Where’s Papa? What’s the meaning of life? Did you know I can count to 14? Let me tell you about my whole day even though I refused to talk about it earlier when you asked me, I really feel the need to discuss Oceanic ecosystems right now with you.
It’s insane. True, mind altering insanity. Some days, I’m there, I’m totally present and on top of my game and facing all of it with grace and loving discipline and it’s like I’m the Mother Teresa of parenting. Then there’s the terrible-horrible-no-good-very-bad-days. You know the ones I’m talking about all you parents out there. Where patience is non-existent. All you want to do is get on the couch and mindless surf Pinterest, and eat all the brownies you couldn’t eat earlier with your child watching you because you’re supposed to be “setting a good example.” There’s not much I need to say about those days other than there’s much more yelling, some tears even, less grace…it’s hard. Bedtime is hard. Parenting is hard. But in the words of one of my favorite people of all time Glennon Doyle Melton, “We can do hard things.” Because in reality, those kiddos are precious. They’re worth it. And though they may suck the very life out of you some days, they also give you just as much life as you gave them.
WOW. Some of you might be sitting here reading this wondering” what the hell? I thought this was a food blog? How does this relate to food AT ALL?” Well I’ll tell you. Bedtime is hard, but you know what isn’t hard, this Paleo Egg Roll in a Bowl recipe. BOOM and that’s how it’s done! The perfect segue into this delicious meal. (ok, maybe not the perfect segue, but it works ok? and besides, this is MY blog and I do what I want!)
A few things about this recipe..#1) It makes a crap ton of food–I mean there is A LOT of veg in this thing, so be prepared for leftovers! #2) Because there’s so much food, we cook the meat and the veggies in separate LARGE pans–it’s really the only way to do it. And #3) As always, toppings are optional, but I highly encourage a fried or scrambled egg on top to really give it that “fried rice” feel! I also LOVE the crunch of the chopped green onion and chopped cashews–it really brings it all together. No go make this and get your chinese food fix!
1 tbsp coconut oil
1-1.5 lbs ground turkey
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp rice wine vinegar
1 1/2 tbsp coconut aminos
2 gloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
salt and pepper to taste
- Heat coconut oil in large skilled over medium-high heat. Add in ground turkey and cook until almost completely browned.
- Right before meat is completely cooked through, add in garlic, ginger, vinegar, sesame oil, and coconut aminos and cook until no longer pink.
- Remove from heat and set aside. Salt and pepper to taste.
2 tbsp coconut oil (more if needed to prevent dryness)
1/2 medium green cabbage, sliced
1/2 medium red cabbage, sliced
1/2 medium onion, diced
4 celery stalks, diced
5 oz. (1/2) of a pre-packaged bag of matchstick carrots
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 1/2 tsp fresh grated ginger
1/4 cup coconut aminos
2 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
2 green onions, chopped
Optional Toppings: fried or scrambled egg, chopped green onions, chopped cashews, sesame seeds
- Heat coconut oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add celery and onions and saute until fragrant (1-2 min).
- Add in garlic and ginger, and saute with celery and onions until warmed.
- Add cabbage and mix well with oil and spices to coat. You may need to add additional coconut oil at this time if the cabbage remains to dry. Cover and steam until slightly softened, approximately 10 minutes.
- Add in carrots, coconut amigos, sesame oil, vinegar, and green onions, and continue to saute until desired level of tenderness is reached (I like my cabbage more crunchy so I don’t cook much longer).
- Remove from heat and combine cabbage and meat mixture in a LARGE mixing bowl.
- Plate and finish with your choice of optional toppings. ENJOY!