Chicken and Rice, Chicken and Rice, Chicken and Rice

After making a delicious vegetable fried rice followed up by blueberry crumble topped with a scoop of ice cream, I asked my wife if she remembered how I was cooking when we first met. 

“Yes of course I do, it was chicken and rice, chicken and rice, chicken and rice”. 

I agree, my meals were somewhat predictable 15 years ago, however I think I might have tossed in the odd night of spaghetti and meat sauce or steak and potatoes. I think this was also when I had a thing with Cinnamon Toast Crunch or English muffins for breakfast! 

I’m not sure what was the catalyst for breaking me out of my routine, but I do know that as the cook for the two of us, and as someone who loves to try new things, I soon found my way around the kitchen. 

As the Internet made it easier for us to learn new skills in the kitchen while following a wide range of recipes from all over the world, cooking and baking new dishes became more exciting. 

I feel it’s important to pay homage to my upbringing for a moment, because as I grew up in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, I spent a lot of time in the kitchen with family and was surrounded by a wide range of interesting dishes. I can remember baking cakes and cookies by the time I was 10 years old, and much of our culture, like most others, was centered around food. 

Newly married, and only having to cook for two was easily done when all I had to do was repeat the same meals with slight modifications for a bit of variety, but I’ll be honest, that didn’t last long. Eating the same thing quickly got boring and so I began reading through cook books, watching cooking shows, reading recipes online and just trying new ideas. 

This last one would lead to many failed meals, however in time, I figured out the timing of separate dishes, I picked up tricks of preparation and I learned what we liked and what we didn’t. 

Practice, and the willingness to fail, just like the best athletes in the world, has been my saving grace in the kitchen. Today for example, I pulled off the delicious fried rice without a recipe, using only leftovers, and by borrowing some soy sauce from my neighbor last minute! Thanks Erin!! 

I also think that my willingness to eat just about anything as a principle has helped because if I didn’t behave this way I would have tossed out a lot of food over the years. 

As an example, one time I invited people over for a BBQ and I decided to pull out all of the moose ribs that were in the freezer. What I didn’t expect was that each package of ribs was like a big roast! Because all of the meat was thawed, it had to be cooked, and so, after the BBQ, I had a fridge filled with cooked moose ribs. Needless to say, all I ate for the next 3 days was wild game breakfast, lunch and supper!! 

As I reflect on my wife’s comment about my regimented meal plan, I am reminded that although we may not see change happening in the moment, or at least in the short term, when we look back at how much we have evolved, much has likely changed over the years. 

How many times have you found yourself in the middle of a program wondering what you were thinking or perhaps you are trying to make positive change in your life, but you feel like you are spinning the tires. 

Chances are, if you give yourself permission to look back to where you where when you started the program, the weight loss journey, the year long coaching program, the new relationship, the new career or whatever it is, you have learned  plenty and you have grown leaps and bounds. 

I share my cooking journey as an example because it’s rare that I ever think about it. However, when I look at how much I have learned in 15 years, I am proud to say that I am a good cook and I love the process. I can mix up just about anything and I am very creative most of the time. I love providing healthy, great tasting meals for my family and it brings me joy to actually be in the grocery store as well as the kitchen. 

In what area of your life are you feeling stuck? Perhaps you aren’t as stuck as you think you are? 

What has changed within you since you began your journey? Don’t just think about the big changes, embrace the small wins as well. It’s the small changes that add up to the big leaps anyway. 

Call to Action:

Spend some time reflecting on one area of your life where you are doing well. Let’s call this one of your strengths. As you reflect on how well you are doing in this area now, think back to when you started out on the journey that brought you here. 

What happened in your life to take you to where you are today?

Who helped you along the way?

What risks did you take to keep moving forward?

When times got tough, where did you get the courage to continue? 

How can you acknowledge yourself for all of the work, time, energy and willingness to grow over the years? 

How can you take this knowledge and these strengths an apply them in other areas of your life? 

What’s the next step? 

Finally, what can you commit to today so that you can move forward into growth? 

I’d love to hear what you come up with so feel free to connect through email, or comment below. 

Until next time…


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