I’m a fan of routine. Of boring. I enjoy getting the same things done day after day, over and over again. It’s the only way I can get good at anything. Practicing, and doing it again the next day. I love the process of refining myself, my talents, and all I do. But at some point things become stagnant, stale, mundane. The external might be the same, but your insides are churning, thirsty for a shift.
Change is the only constant in life. And I think we should experience change repeatedly because frankly, there’s no way around it if we want growth. Changes allow us to discover what’s inside of us, to unveil the depth of our layers and buried talents, accomplishments, goals, actions.
The thing is, when we should change, we begin to feel it. It’s an itch that gnaws at you, that lets you know you should be doing something different. It manifests in other ways, too. Lethargy, unexcitement, and general unmotivation. This is how I’ve been feeling for the past year or so, with not much on the horizon of change in my professional life, besides compounding and sharing what I already know. I’ve felt that I am better equipped to help people in other ways. To delve deeper in the subjects that I am not well-versed in, to fill in the cracks where I feel I’m lacking.
For that reason, after several months of contemplation, I’ve scratched the itch by going back to school to become a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner. My need to spread the message of the impact of eating whole foods for both mental and physical health has been my crystal-clear purpose for several years now. But I’ve been craving the nitty gritty science as it will allow me to express that message with a stronger and more legitimate voice, in addition to helping people one on one. I have so many goals surrounding this new endeavor, and finally feel that as I listen to the callings of my insides, I am more aligned with what I must accomplish and the legacy that I will leave behind because of it.
Change is uncomfortable. Sometimes sacrifices must be made, but when all is said and done, it’s always worth it. Adding another level of work to my days sometimes seems unimaginable, but as I come to accept myself I realize that I love to work. Idle time is dangerous for me. I make an effort to sit still every single day, but if I allow my mind to ruminate, it becomes a liar and story-teller that no one should ever listen to.
During these busy days, I crave my vegetables. But their preparation needs to be effortlessly tasty. So here’s an example of something on my rotation, a quick recipe for carrots roasted with fennel. Anise-y tasting fennel is often seen in crunchy salads, but roasted, it turns into a soft, sweet addition to carrots. A nice change from the usual.
Roasted carrots with fennel & dill
2 pound carrots, peeled, and chopped into 1″ pieces
1 bulb fennel, sliced thin, some greens saved for garnish
1 red onion, sliced thin
2 tablespoons cooking fat
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoon chopped fresh dill (parsley will also work)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Set your oven at 425 degrees F. On a large rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper, add the carrots, fennel, onion and cooking fat. Roast for about 45 minutes, tossing the vegetables every 15 minutes or so, until the carrots and fennel are caramelized and golden.
Remove the pan from the oven and add the garlic cloves. Roast for 5-10 minutes longer. At this point the veggies should be done and delicious. Season with salt, pepper, a squeeze of lemon, and top with the chopped fresh dill.