Monday, September 7, 2015

Oriental Broccoli Slaw

I love making this slaw and taking to family gatherings. It's easy to make a large amount and you really can't screw it up. Quite often, somebody asks me for the recipe, but I'm bad about getting it to them. With it here, all I have to say is "Check out my blog!"

Oriental Broccoli Slaw
  • 1 bag broccoli slaw mix
  • green onions (for garnish)
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar (white will work)
  • 3/4 cup oil (vegetable or canola)
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 1 pack Ramen noodles, oriental flavor

Melt about 1/2 stick of butter in a large skillet.

Open the noodles and place them in a plastic zip top bag. Reserve the seasoning packet for the dressing. Crush the noodles with a rolling pin.

Place crushed noodles and pine nuts in the skillet with melted butter. Saute over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until toasted. Don't let the pine nuts burn!

Meanwhile, whisk together the brown sugar, oil, vinegar, and seasoning packet for the dressing.

Place the broccoli slaw in a large bowl and toss with the sunflower seeds and the sauteed noodles and pine nuts. Pour the dressing over the slaw and mix well until coated.

Garnish with chopped green onions. Cover and refrigerate until dinner. The flavor gets even better the next day, but it loses its crunch.

Some variations:
  • I see many recipes that use sliced or slivered almonds instead of the pine nuts I use. Almonds are much less expensive than pine nuts, so they can be a good alternative.
  • If you want to make more, use 2 bags of slaw and 2 bags of noodles. Don't change the recipe for the dressing though, it makes enough as it is to coat double the amount of slaw.
  • If you are taking this on the road, you can make the two parts the day before, then assemble them the next day at your destination. This way the slaw is still good and crunchy. Like I said above though, the flavor is great the next day if you don't mind less crunch.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Something to Get Off My Chest

As long as this is stewing in my mind, I might as well put it out there.

Earlier this week I had my annual review. Nothing surprising until my supervisor got to the part about my "attitude." The box was marked "NI". Needs improvement. I was a bit shocked.

I'm not one to bitch and moan in agency meetings. In fact, for the most part, I just sit back and listen. I get along with everyone I work with and treat everybody respectfully. My mind was spinning and I couldn't figure out what I had done.

Then he told me. It was because of a Facebook post around election time where I made clear I wasn't pleased about the re-election of our governor. He said there was "scuttlebutt" about the post and that even though it was my private page (where I don't have listed where I work) I should be careful about what I say. I was taken aback enough that I didn't say much more than "Oh, okay." But then I started to think.

What the fuck was wrong with what I said? I didn't vote for the guy and really hoped nobody else would either. When it was clear he won the race, I was disappointed and saw bad things coming (they have started already, by the way). I said it was time to leave government work and go into the private sector. And I meant it, still do. It wasn't anything that I wouldn't say out loud, either.

Screenshot of actual post. Click to biggify.

Now, here's the thing. I'm friends with a handful of people from work on Facebook. This incident pissed me off enough that I added all but one of those people to my "restricted" list. They can only see posts that I mark as "Public." If they don't like what I have to say, fuck 'em. They don't need to see it. But now I'm rethinking that move. Frankly, I'd rather not be FB friends at all with someone who would piss and moan-behind my back-about what I've posted. Since I'm not sure who it was (or how many of them for that matter) this seemed to be the easiest way to handle the situation.

I don't post a lot of things about politics or religion because I know that people can get hurt feelings, but what I do post, I mean. My page isn't all kitty cats, all the time. I've got to take a stand on things once in a while. If someone takes issue with that, too bad.

I don't think this should have come back on me during my official review. Just because I don't like our governor nor the outlook for our state doesn't mean I have a bad attitude or low morale about my job. It doesn't help mind you, but the agency is about more than just the governor. In fact, he has very little to do with my job.

Maybe they should look at the fact that I don't get as much support as I would like from my superiors, but I find others to help me when I need it, or the fact that I roll with the changes in the agency as well as, or maybe even better than, anyone else. I could have a very pissy attitude and this made me want to put it on display so they could see what Amy-With-A-Bad-Attitude would really be like.

But I won't. I'll just keep my head down and do my job while I hope the Next Great Thing comes along.

Welcome to 2015

Like many others, I hope 2015 is better than 2014. I believe things are already headed that direction. My mental health is much better than it was at the beginning of 2014. That being said, I wish for inner peace this year. I wish for many things, actually, but they all lead to peace.

My word for 2015 is breathe. I tossed several around and with some help from my dear friend Connie, I settled on this one. When things get to be too much or I feel overwhelmed, I will remind myself to breathe.