This blog is intended to be a message for the soul, about thanks and giving.
I heard a wonderful true story from a dear friend of mine, that combines both thanks and giving. When saying this word as the holiday approaches, give each word consideration. On November 25th, 2021 give both thanks and giving, and all year through. Here is the story I will share.
A wonderful couple that we have been friends with almost as long as my husband and I have been together, just made a move across the country, to Massachusetts. This is where the wife is from, husband being from Michigan. They have four children all grown and living here on the west coast, one grandchild along with his aging parents. The wife is one of 10 children, most living here on the west coast as well. She has lost of few siblings already along with both of her parents. She was a pediatric nurse by trade, the most amazing nurturing and caring woman you could ever meet. I was recently having a conversation with the husband about their life in Pittsfield Massachusetts, a recent visit with all four of their kids, a husband, 3 girlfriends and a granddaughter. They are renting a beautiful 2 bedroom, large apartment in downtown, so the visit with the whole family in a 2 bedroom apartment was tight. The husband had explained to me that he has mentioned to his wife about buying a beautiful home by the lake, where everyone could fit and with plenty of space, but his wife finds great comfort in their apartment. She loves being able to walk to dinner, the stores, to run her errands, etc. Where the thanks and the giving come in is this next part... He explained that after 36 years of marriage, raising 4 children, being an amazing sister to her family, daughter in law to his parents, supporting him is his business decisions, 10 plus moves, 2 houses being built...all to which he gives much THANKS for. He says that now it is his turn to GIVE back. This is her time to choose the life that makes her happy, in a place where she can find peace and comfort, however that looks, he is letting her decide what their final years will look like together and with family.
I find so much Beauty and Love in this story, and hope that you do as well. I don't claim to be the best storyteller by any means, I just hope I have done it some justice and that you get what I am trying to express. There is so much in our lives to be thankful for and so many opportunities to be giving to those around us. Situations that allow us to make choices for others, do for others, give to others. Let this be the start of a future full of thanks and giving!!!
Peanut (or Sunbutter) Sauce with Rice Noodles, Veggies and Shrimp
1 lb peeled and deveined shrimp
8 oz. Rice noodles
3 tablespoons sunbutter
2 tablespoons coconut aminos
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
juice of ½ lemon
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
2 tablespoon olive oil
4 cloves garlic chopped
1 inch ginger chopped
1 cup shiitake mushrooms sliced
1 cup broccoli florets
2 tablespoons water
1/4 cup green onions for garnish
Boil The Noodles
Heat water in a large saucepan. Add salt. Once it starts to boil, add noodles. Give it a quick stir and boil for 9-12 minutes (or as instructed in the packaging).
Once it's boiled, turn off the heat and drain. Drizzle a bit of olive oil and gently mix using 2 forks. This prevents the noodles from sticking.
In a small bowl whisk the sauce ingredients, sunbutter, coconut aminos, rice vinegar, lemon, maple syrup, red pepper flakes and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
Set a saute pan over medium heat. Add oil. Once it's hot, add ginger + garlic and stir-saute until golden, around 1-2 minutes.
Add mushroom + broccoli and stir-saute for 1-2 minutes. Pour in 2 tablespoons of water. Cover the pan and let it cook for 2-3 minutes.
Add the boiled noodles and peanut sauce. Gently fold and mix until the noodles are completely coated with the sauce.
Garnish with green onions Serve hot or cold.
In a skillet heat 2 tbsp olive oil, sauté 4 cloves crushed garlic and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Add the shrimp and cook until opaque, squeeze ½ lemon over the top. Lay the shrimp on top of the rice noodle dish and serve