It’s all about perspective

Archived | March 4, 2009 | By

Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. It’s been a bit of a rough time lately with the economy and all. Oh, they’re still making pies over at the café, but no one has bought a whole pie lately, and they’ve stopped putting fresh parsley on the dinner plates. The manager over at the grocery store isn’t as quick to smile. Business hasn’t been so good and he’s had to cut employee hours. At parent-teacher conferences Monday night, they were talking about a four-day school week next year. And I noticed, late last night, Girl Scout cookie boxes are smaller than ever. No parsley? Fewer days of school? Enough to get a person down, sure enough.
I’ve told my kids, time and again, it’s not the weight of the load, but how you carry it. It’s all about perspective. You can get all hot and bothered, or you can adjust. Thing is, life always has been, always will be about ups and downs, and I’ve never encountered much of anything that doesn’t have some good in it.
I remember the big July 15 storm when I was a child. Came through like nothing I’d ever seen before. We were in the basement for hours, huddled around a flashlight listening to the radio, while high winds and driving rain took down trees and power lines for miles around. For days after, the townspeople worked together gathering debris from each other’s yards, cutting up trees that had fallen over lot lines, helping rebuild garages and replace broken windows and find lost dogs. There were potlucks in parking lots and barbecues in backyards and, late at night, neighbors who’d never really talked before sat out on their porches and drank grandma’s homemade double-grape wine and surveyed their progress.
Nothing like a good storm to put it all in perspective. And Spring, bless her heart, is just around the corner. Think I’ll plant some parsley this time around.
Beef Noodle Hotdish
One more hotdish as we round the corner into spring. Take this one along when you visit someone who doesn’t do much cooking, or as a gift to someone who could use a gift.
1 pound ground beef lean
1 medium onion chopped
8 ounce can whole kernel corn
8 ounce can tomato sauce
1/4 cup black olives, pitted, halved (optional)
2 cups uncooked noodles
2 cups water
1 teaspoon oregano leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup cheddar cheese shredded
Cook and stir the meat and onion in a large skillet until the meat is brown. Drain off the excess fat. Stir in corn (undrained) and the rest of the ingredients.
To prepare in a skillet: heat the mixture to boiling. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the noodles are tender, about 20 minutes.
To prepare in the oven: pour the mixture into an ungreased 2-quart casserole. Cover and bake in a 375 degree F. oven for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Uncover and bake until the mixture thickens, about 15 minutes.
Serve hot with biscuits or cornbread or bread. Enjoy!