Monthly Archives: May 2015

Pearl Grace Life, Playtime

Playtime

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Playtime

Pearl Grace Life, playtimeI saw an awesome tweet the other day that I loved so much that I faved and retweeted it. And now I’d like to share it with you.

It was a simple question that went like this, “Can you remember who you were before the world told you who you should be?”

I thought it was so beautiful and a nourishing piece of food for thought.

So many people in the world are living only a fraction of the life they dreamed possible when they were little.

So many of us have resided ourselves to a life of doing the mundane, living a life of mediocrity and being reliant on the behaviours, attitudes and opinions of other people to determine our own happiness and sense of self-worth.

Over time our idea of what is actually possible in the world and our true potential become skewed after years of conditioning from outside forces.

So, when I saw the tweet, it reminded me of the things I used to love doing when I was a kid; playing dress up – usually like my favourite pop star – and dancing around my living room.

I loved pretending to cook in my imaginary kitchen, which was situated on the top bunk of the bunk bed I shared with my sister. I would then serve my culinary masterpieces to my customers who were seated on the bed below. (You know what, I still think that’s a pretty cool idea for an 8 year old!)

I would secretly re-organise the furniture in the lounge whenever my folks were out and pretend to be the American gymnast Dominique Dawes and I’d flip and roll over the floor and chairs.

I would make up a ton of stories in my head with different characters, write scripts and perform my “hit show” to my mum while she cooked dinner. (No wonder my folks sent me to theatre school).

Needless to say I was a carefree dreamer and was open about expressing it.

Then mum got sick and by the time I was 19 both my parents had passed away.

Tweet it out peeps: “Logic will take you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.” – Albert Einstein via @PearlGraceLife

As you can imagine I had to grow up very fast. And for the next decade of my life I got “serious”.

I became serious about getting my degree, getting a job, working hard, buying my first home.

It was what I felt I had to do.

But I love how the universe conspires on your behalf. And sometimes the most unexpected of events, such as falling pregnant, can offer you an opportunity to reassess your life choices and purpose.

I had no idea how much of an impact having a baby would have on my life.

Ealy has been – and remains to be – the single greatest teacher I’ve ever had.

He teaches me about the beauty of life every single day and his sense of wonder is inspiring.

When I look at him I’m reminded of how fascinating and incredible little people are.

They find joy in the simplest of things. They are fascinated by everything, hungry to learnPearl Grace Life, Playtime post and approach everyday with a sense of wonder.

Ealy finds everything enchanting from the crawling ants to the grazing cows.

He marvels at the rain and the sound of wind. And he’s amazed by trees and would chase after butterflies all day long if I’d let him.

He appreciates these precious gifts that the world offers up for free all the time.

And yet, I don’t think I stopped to smell the fresh air once in my 20’s. I was simply “too busy”, too preoccupied and too old.

But now, I do it every single day. I hasten to add that Ealy has inspired me to relight my fire (Cue Take That) for the things I loved doing when I was a kid.

And now I get to do many of them here on the blog and in life. For example, one of the perks of having a toddler is that cartwheels in the park and playing dress up come as standard!

Ealy has reminded me of the little girl that believed in tooth fairies and mermaids because she was also the same little girl who dreamed of the impossible.

This week, this month, this year, I’m hoping that we all remember who we were before the world told us who we ought to be.

Take a trip down the memory lane of your childhood and remember the things that use to bring you joy, make you happy and gave you the feeling of flying high on the wings of life.

Our boundless imaginations are still swirling around inside of us. They are in our hearts and minds our entire lives waiting for permission to soar.

Show the world who you really are. Let your inner child out to play because it’s playtime, baby.

Now, I’d love to hear your thoughts about this. Do feel like your creative, spirited wings have been clipped by society or the people around you? If so, how do you let your inner child out to play? 

Share with me in the comments below.

All my love,
Nat x

Quick point: Please check out the video (above) by Sir Ken Robinson discussing the need to celebrate children’s creativity more in schools. It’s very funny, insightful and well worth a watch.

 

Images courtesy of kristinahollis.wordpress.comwww.stylehasnosize.com and thornleyfallis.com

Pearl Grace Life, wild rice and chilli prawns

Wild rice with chilli prawns

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Wild rice with chilli prawns

Pearl Grace Life, wild rice with chilli prawnsIngredients:

Half a cup of wild rice
A can of black beans (230g drained)
1 tbsp spoonful of coconut milk
150g of king prawns (I use raw organic prawns but you could use the ones that are already cooked and warm them through)
1 tbsp of olive oil
Dried chilli flakes
Black pepper (and salt if desired)
A squeeze of lemon

I love this dish so much so that every mouthful makes me very Happy… “Like a room without a roof”.  Take it away, Pharrell, baby…

Method:
1. Cook the wild rice. I use half a cup of rice and a full cup of boiled water (use the same cup to measure) Pour both into a saucepan.

2. Drain the can of black beans, rinse and add to the saucepan with the rice.

3. Place the saucepan on a high heat till the water begins to boil. Then turn the heat down to low and cover with a lid. Cook for approximately 25-30 mins or until the rice is cooked. (check while it cooks and add a little water if the rice and beans look dry)

4. When the rice and beans have cooked, remove from the heat and stir in the spoonful of coconut milk.

5. Then heat the olive oil in a wok or large frying pan. Add the prawns. If you’re using raw prawns then cook till they turn coral pink. If you’re using cooked prawns then cook till they’re piping hot.

6. Season the prawns with the chilli, black pepper and salt as desired.

7. Add as much rice and beans as you crave into the wok and stir together for a minute so that all the flavours and juices infuse.

8. Turn off the heat and serve immediately with your favourite pair of chopsticks. Drizzle a squeeze of lemon juice over the prawns and enjoy!

Switch it up!

The carnivores amongst us could swap the prawns for slices of chicken or beef and to the lovely vegan and veggies out there you could toss in some tofu instead or some stir fry peppers and mushrooms.

You could also choose to use noodles instead of rice or a different type of rice if wild rice ain’t your thing.

It’s a very forgiving recipe – like most of what I make – so switch it up to suit your taste.

Give it a try and share your thoughts, ideas and suggestions below.

So, curious why I love wild rice so much? Check this out

Love Nat x

 

Images courtesy of Nat Millie 

Pearl Grace Life Benefits of eating Wild Rice

Wild Rice

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The benefits of wild rice

Pearl Grace Life The benefits of eating wild riceI love rice. As the kid of parents that hailed from the Caribbean it will come as no surprise when I say rice was often the backbone of the meals served up at home when I was younger.

Over the years I’ve experimented with different types of rice from brown to white and long grain to short grain.

Japanese Jasmine rice played a prominent role in our kitchen for a while till I discovered wild rice.

And when I began to realise I was hooked on this nutty stuff I thought it would be a good idea to find out if it was in fact good for me.

Not only was I thrilled to learn that it was but I was even more amazed to discover that they boasted some incredible health benefits as well.

So here goes, for your culinary pleasure, here are 10 Wonderful health benefits to eating Wild Rice

1. It’s gluten free.

2. Is sodium free: great news for your heart and for your blood pressure.

3. It has a warm nutty flavour which is very unique and makes it a tasty dish in it’s own right.

4. It contains twice as much protein as brown rice.

5. It’s a healthy option for diabetics because it’s not polished or refined like other types of rice.

6. It’s very rich in antioxidants—containing up to 30 times more antioxidants than it’s white counterpart! Which means regular consumption of wild rice protects you from disease and ageing.

7. Is high in fibre. This means wild rice keeps your digestion smooth and helps lower cholesterol.

8. Wild rice is a good source of essential minerals such as phosphorus, zinc and folate, which give you energy and nurtures your bones.

9. It’s a natural source of vitamins A, C and E, which are essential for overall health and strengthening your immune system.

10. And for the weight watchers out there, a serving of wild rice is lower in calories than other rice varieties. So, you can enjoy it to your hearts content without worrying about your waistline.

So, go grab yourself a bag of this awesome stuff and get cooking, baby.

Not sure what to cook first… Why not try my Garlic Chilli Prawns with wild rice and black beans.  It’s dee-lish!

If you have a tasty recipe containing wild rice that you’d like to share with the world then please post it in the comments below.

As always, you’re a star for reading,

Lots of love,
Nat x

Title image courtesy of ww.itimes.com and content image by www.kitchendaily.com