Creating my recipe for a nourishing life began in the 1980’s on the carpeted kitchen floor of an old farmhouse kitchen in rural Minnesota. The kitchen was my favorite room. But it wasn’t because I loved cooking. It was because I loved reading….recipes – especially from church ladies who had submitted their favorite recipes in their church cookbooks.
Each time I flipped through the dog-eared pages of these cookbooks, I made a mental checklist to determine whether or not I would be interested in the recipe. Here’s what I would think about:
- The writer of the recipe. I thought I could tell a lot about the recipe based on who had submitted it.
- The title of the recipe. Titles give clues to what the recipe is about. And I continued reading the recipe or flipped the page – often times based on the title.
- The ingredient list. I was looking for recipes that were simple in nature instead of a long laundry list of ingredients to find and measure. I was looking for a focused recipe with the use of familiar ingredients, foods I knew we already had in the pantry or in the refrigerator.
- Imagining the outcome. Would this dish or dessert be nourishing, one that fills and satisfies, and completes the meal?
I am discovering I can apply these same concepts to my own recipe – my recipe for a nourishing life.
I love the words “to nourish”. Why? To nourish means to provide with the food or other substances necessary for growth, health and good condition.
My choices in food can be nourishing, but there’s more. The music on the radio, the conversations I am a part of, the family I surround myself with, my friends, the status updates on Facebook, the shows on television or Netflix I watch each week, the books on my nightstand, the work that I do, how active I am, how I take care of myself. Depending on how I choose, these choices can either nourish me or starve me. I can grow and develop in a healthy way because of my choices or I can wither and fade because of my choices.
Yet, I believe if your life is nourishing, you are flourishing.
Nourish and flourish. To flourish is to grow or develop in a healthy or vigorous way, especially because of those choices that nourish us!
So, as I pause to reflect on my own personal recipe for a nourishing life, I ask myself these questions:
- Who is the writer of my recipe? While my life journey has included large amounts of anxiety-related medical situations, it’s because of that journey I have finally found my way to the recipe I was meant to live out. A recipe devoted to faith.
- What’s the title – or expression – of who I am? What am I created to be?
- What are the necessary ingredients that belong in this recipe so it becomes the most nourishing? For me, it’s faith + family + food + gardening + creating memories.
- What steps do I take to cultivate these ingredients into something beautiful? Each forward step I take, I am making sure to include my values.
- What is my outcome? My ultimate goal, my destination, my target. Where is the path leading towards? What is your calling?
If your life is nourishing, you are flourishing.
I hope you join me on this journey of creating the recipe for a nourishing life. Stop back often for inspiration, recipes and ways to live a nourishing life. (Recipes will included!)
Like this one below – for my favorite Blueberry Hand Pies.
- 1 box refrigerated pie crusts
- 2 cups frozen or fresh blueberries
- 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
- 6 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons corn starch
- Dash of salt
- 1 egg, beaten
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Unroll pie crusts and cut four 6-inch circles out of crust. Set aside.
- Combine blueberries and lemon juice and let meld together for 5-10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, combine sugar, lemon zest, cornstarch and salt in another bowl. Add the blueberries including 1/2 of the lemon juice (toss the rest). Stir gently to coat.
- Pour this mixture into a small saucepan, heat over medium high heat until mixture starts to thicken and bubble, approximately 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
- Spoon 1/3 cup heated blueberry mixture onto half of pie crust circle. Spread, making sure edges are not coated with blueberry sauce. Fold pie dough over and use fork to seal edges. Brush egg over top of crust. Repeat with remaining crusts.
- Place pies on foil lined pan, pre-sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.
- Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes or until bubbling and light brown.