Friday, May 25, 2012

Thank You Sir, May I Have Another?

Okay~I have to admit that I watched this over and over once I found it~I thought it would be best to start off with something funny, since the discussion itself could be quite serious, a little gross even, and well, maybe even....boring.

Thank God for Geico commercials!  While my husband doesn't think they're the least bit funny, I could watch them all day long.  For me, they rank right up there with HGTV design episodes or Seinfeld reruns.  Yep.  Thought I'd just put myself out there... 

 So, you guessed it~This post is about SUSHI!!

Sushi (すし, 寿司, 鮨, 鮓, 寿斗, 寿し, 壽司?) is a Japanese food consisting of cooked vinegared rice (shari) combined with other ingredients (neta). Neta and forms of sushi presentation vary, but the ingredient which all sushi have in common is shari. The most common neta is seafood.
Raw meat sliced and served by itself is sashimi.

The original type of sushi, known today as nare-zushi (馴れ寿司, 熟寿司), was first developed in Southeast Asia, and spread to south China before introduction to Japan.[citation needed] The term sushi comes from an archaic grammatical form no longer used in other contexts; literally, sushi means "sour-tasting", a reflection of its historic fermented roots. The oldest form of sushi in Japan, narezushi, still very closely resembles this process, wherein fish is fermented via being wrapped in soured fermenting rice. The fish proteins break down via fermentation into its constituent amino acids. The fermenting rice and fish results in a sour taste and also one of the five basic tastes, called umami in Japanese.[1] In Japan, narezushi evolved into oshizushi and ultimately Edomae nigirizushi, which is what the world today knows as "sushi".

I am a huge fan of sushi~Have been for a long, long time.  It's something my oldest son and I have eaten regularly since he was five...Many times, we would be in a restaurant, and people around us would exclaim, "Oh my gosh!! He's eating that, and that green seaweed stuff, and with chopsticks, and he likes it?!!"

Then, they'd go on to tell me that all their kids would eat were chicken fingers and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. How did I get him to like this?

Simply this.  I exposed him to a wide variety of foods, from the time he began with finger foods.  I varied the shapes, sizes, textures, cooking processes.  I fed him every fruit and veggie that found its way into the kitchen.  I experimented a lot with baking and cooking different things.  There was always something going on in my kitchen.

So, it came as no surprise to me when he wanted to try sushi.  And, like my experience, it was love at first bite!! 

I still remember the first time I tried it myself.  This was prior to meeting my current husband, by the way, just for the record : ))  

I was dating this guy who was in the advertising business.  He had a lot of money, and it was common for him and his associates to eat sushi several nights a week.  I,myself, was a single mom, putting myself through school and raising a child on, lets just say, close to nothing.

He picked me up for a date one evening, and announced that he was taking me out for a surprise...He uncovered my eyes when we got inside, and here on the table in front of me, was a huge spread of sushi.  I had read all about the "risks" involved. (We were, after all, in Oklahoma City..Where was this from? Louisiana??)

Anyhoo, he reassured me that it was safe, and that he'd eaten at this place countless times.  So, we sat down and prepared to dive in.  Armed with my chopsticks, I went in for the kill.  That's when he stopped me and said, "Wait, Jacque.  I know you love hot stuff.  This will knock your socks off!"  That's when I met the green-mush-love-of-my-life.  His name is Wasabi.

Again, in the spirit of keepin' it light around here today~More about why that's so important today, later...stay tuned.  I'm reeling you in now...And, no, this isn't to rally support of Budweiser...and probably even more funny if you have ever seen the string of Superbowl-birthed "What's UP?" commercials prior to it!

So, I was asked to just take a big chunk of this green stuff, Wasabi, and put it in my mouth.  No sushi buffer.  No ice cubes on the side.  No milk to chase it down with.  I had never experienced anything in my life even close to it, and this is coming from a gal who has been eating jalapenos and every other imaginable hot thing since I was a tiny little girl.

The first physiological response to this stuff?? I thought my brain was on fire!  Then my eyes started to burn...I had the strange feeling they might try to escape from my nostrils.  No joke here.  My sinuses felt like someone had power washed them with Pine Sol.  And then~

It was gone.  Done. Over.  No lingering burning sensation that would prevent me from tasting the rest of the meal.  No glass of milk-chaser needed.  No running to find a piece of bread or cheese.  None of the after-effects I'd experienced with jalapenos or any other type of hot peppers.  I was hooked!!

So, there you have it.  The sushi followed.  It was delicious, fresh, light, and just perfect with the ginger, wasabi and soy sauce.  I had become a fan for life.

Fast-forward to this past Monday night.  Amos had a late afternoon dentist appointment that ended 1 hour before my worship practice began.  That meant I had to get to the supermarket, grab something for dinner, get home, cook, and get out the door in the next 50 minutes.  Whew!

So, off we went.  We had picked up a couple of items in the produce department, some beans for the soup, came around the bend and grabbed a half-gallon of almond milk, and then it happened.  IT meaning the sighting.  It went something like this....

Amos and I had just been talking about how hungry we were.  How short on time we were.  He hadn't eaten since 11 that morning, and was starving.  I was looking at running out the door with no dinner.  We looked up and saw row upon row of...

Both of our faces lit up!!  This was an answer to all of our dilemmas (for now anyway).  He could have a healthy "snack", and I could stuff dinner in my face on the drive home.  Not much conversing about this one.  He chose an Alaskan roll, and I chose a spicy tuna.  Checked out.  Everyone to the car.  Buckled in.  Let dinner begin!

I went to practice that night.  Amos stayed home and helped with his brother.  Everyone went to bed.  Several times during the night, I was awakened with the onset of what seemed to be a pretty bad headache, along with stomach spasms.  

When the alarm went off, I got up to go make sure Amos was awake.  I almost fell into the door.  I stumbled into his room, groggy and dizzy.  Yes, he was up.  I was pretty sure at that point that my brain might explode out of the front of my face, so I dragged my feet back into the bedroom and threw myself onto the bed.

I heard him in the bathroom.  He was taking forEVER to get ready.  I thought he might miss the bus, so I got up and made my way to the door to tell him to hurry.  He mumbled, "Okay Mom."  A few minutes later, I heard him leave.

My husband had to take the baby that morning because I could not get out of bed.  My stomach felt like someone had shoved an ice pick into it.  I was nauseous.  I was dizzy.  Had no energy.  No voice.  Fever.  Chills.  And, this headache that made me wonder if I could be having a stroke at the same time.

At 11:22, my phone buzzed.  It was a text from my son.  It said, "Mom, I'm feeling sick.  I think it might be the sushi."

Now, folks, I'm a pretty bright woman, but I hadn't thought--not even for a second--about the sushi.  A few minutes later, the school nurse called.  She said he was sick.  She didn't want to send him back to class.  Could I pick him up?  I physically couldn't get out of bed.  Grandma had Nathaniel by then, who was napping.  Scott was out of pocket.  So, Amos stuck it out until school ended and rode the bus home.

We both spent that day and the next in bed.  No food.  Had to force ourselves to drink water.  At one point, I had the chills so bad that I took a hot bath at 11 pm...
Basically, one word described our condition.  

Amos was able to return to school yesterday.  I, on the other hand, was still fighting with all I had just to keep up with the little man and not fall over.  This morning, I woke up feeling more like myself.  About 80%....

So, I'm here to pass along some information.  Turns out, the type of food poisoning we had was bacterial.  There are other types out there~one that involves a type of worm(ewww-yuck)~that are far more dangerous.  We are extremely blessed that this passed on its own, without any medical intervention.

Will we eat sushi again?  Sure.  Probably not for a while, and most likely never again from the supermarket, but it's a tough one to give up permanently.

Here is a link to a site below that will give you a brief education.
 The internet, I'm sure, has an almost endless supply of resources for your perusal.  In the meantime, you might want to read this since it's brief and to the point.

Have a fantastic weekend, all!! Thank you for your loyalty, and for coming back to read~even when there is such a lull between posts.  I love and appreciate all of you so much!

Be blessed!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Waiting Here For You

How many of us are waiting?  Waiting for something?  Waiting for someone? Waiting for that daughter or son; that parent to find their way into the arms of Jesus?  Waiting for healing in our relationships? Waiting for healing in our finances?  Waiting for physical healing in our bodies?  Praying and waiting on for that same healing for someone we love?

How many of us are waiting on a miracle?  

How many of us are waiting on GOD?

Just how long do we wait?  How long do we trust? How much faith should we really put out there?  Shouldn't we ration it so we don't run out?

I felt led to bring you this message today.  I have waited on people.  Waited on circumstances to change.  Waited for my financial situation to get better.  Waited on my relationships with others to be restored.  Waited on a body wracked with  pain to either die or heal.

I have waited on God...for Him to speak.  To move me.  To heal me.  To move me into higher places.  To bring me into a place of rest.  Of hope.  Of peace and joy.
I have waited on God on behalf of others.  I have prayed and lifted them up to Him.  I have had to leave them in HIS hands, and let Him have HIS way with them.  HIS will.  In HIS timing.  

So many of us struggle with who we are.  We struggle with what the world wants from us.  We struggle with how others perceive us.  We struggle with trying to figure out what this life is all about, and what our purpose is here on this Earth.  We struggle with figuring out how to not only survive, but THRIVE.  

  We struggle with our faith.  We struggle with our pain.  With our needs, our hurts, our desires.  Our loss.

This is where the Word of God comes in.  

Only when we know what GOD has to say about us and our situations, can we truly be moved into a place of victory.  A place of praising God UNTIL that victory comes; trusting that it will come, and a place of continuing to praise Him AFTER it has come.

 Here is what God has to say about waiting....

"Be waiting for the Lord, and keep his way; and you will be lifted up, and have the land for your heritage: when the evil-doers are cut off, you will see it." Psalms 37:34

"Do not say, I will give punishment for evil: go on waiting for the Lord, and he will be your Savior." Proverbs 20:22

"Whoever keeps a fig-tree will have its fruit; and the servant waiting on his master will be honored." Proverbs 27:18

"And those who have knowledge of Your Name will put their faith in You; because you, Lord, have ever given Your help to those who were waiting for you." Psalms 9:10

"See! as the eyes of servants are turned to the hands of their masters, and the eyes of a servant-girl to her owner, so our eyes are waiting for the Lord our God, till he has mercy on us." Psalms 123:2

"O Lord, take me out of the hands of my haters; my soul is waiting for you." Psalms 143:9

"Jehovah is pleased with those fearing Him, with those waiting for His kindness." Psalms 147:11

"When I was waiting quietly for the Lord, His heart was turned to me, and He gave ear to my cry." Psalms 40:1

"Also let none waiting on Thee be ashamed, Let the treacherous dealers without cause be ashamed." Psalms 25:3

"Now may the God who gives comfort and strength in waiting make you of the same mind with one another in harmony with Christ Jesus…" Romans 15:5

"Love is never tired of waiting."1 Corinthians 13:4

"So that you may not be slow in heart, but may take as your example those to whom God has given their heritage, because of their faith and their long waiting." Hebrews 6:12

"And so, as the result of patient waiting, our forefather obtained what God had promised." Hebrews 6:15

"Go on waiting calmly, my brothers, till the coming of the Lord, like the farmer waiting for the good fruit of the earth till the early and late rains have come." James 5:7

"Be as calm in your waiting; let your hearts be strong: because the coming of the Lord is near." James 5:8

"The Lord is not slow in keeping his word, as he seems to some, but he is waiting in mercy for you, not desiring the destruction of any, but that all may be turned from their evil ways." 2 Peter 3:9

"See, I am waiting at the door and giving the sign; if my voice comes to any man's ears and he makes the door open, I will come in to him, and will take food with him and he with ME." Revelation 3:20

"I am waiting for the Lord, my soul is waiting for Him, and my hope is in His Word." Psalms 130:5

Be blessed.  I pray that you will find comfort, hope, and rest 
in this today.