The most rewarding part of what I do is being able to touch the lives of others. I am continuously inspired and know for sure that I’ve reached someone else by the proportional blessings that I reap and feel. The more you give, the more you get.
Fairly recently I had the opportunity to speak to a group of high school aged students during their lunch time Super Food Club meeting. I was educating the students on sugar – specifically refined sugar. We talked about all of the negative physical and emotional effects of sugar, as well as sugar alternatives. It was really great for me to see how interested these kids were. The previous week’s discussion had also been on white sugar and, consequently, the group’s discussion had left them rather uniformed. I was glad to be able to help provide more factual insight. And, being that I spoke just one day following Halloween, the timing couldn’t have been more perfect.
As we were chatting, I casually asked the group if anyone had felt any changes to their body or mood following their sweet indulgences the previous evening. One brave gentleman raised his hand and proceeded to relay to me, in great detail, the events of his Halloween evening and how he had the best laid plans to “eat a nice dinner of kimchee, I just LOVE kim-chee, and then one piece of chocolate, because it’s medicinal, you know.” Whoa!!!!!! Did you hear/read what this teenager just said! He LOVES kimchee!! That right there totally made my day! I love to hear that. Smiles all around! His comment about the medicinal effects of chocolate was pretty darn awesome too.
A week later I was working with a group of first graders, talking about locally grown, farm-fresh, and unprocessed foods. I offered another poser: “what’s your favorite food?” (Even though they were required to keep it in the fruit and vegetable realm, I still had one or two ice cream and popsicle responses). I was blown away again! FIVE of the 100 kiddos reported Brussel’s sprouts as their favorite food. Awesome! We all know I LOVE Brussel’s sprouts. One child favors seaweed. To be fair, this child was from the Japanese Immersion class at the school. The next one, though, really knocked my socks off. Kohlrabi. High fives to the parents of THIS little guy!! Did you know anything about kohlrabi when you were six years old? Do you know anything about kohlrabi now?
Fast forward a few weeks. Going about my business, generally in my own little world of imagination, I’m stopped mid-image. “Hey, I know you!” That’s right – he did know me! I immediately responded with a gigantic grin. “You do know me,” I said. “And you just LOVE kim-chee!!” Boy did that make him smile. Right back at ‘cha! That’s the best part of any day…
As I’ve been contemplating my delivery of this story, my mind flutters about and gently lands upon the memory of one of the most wonderful people in my life. Thank you, Tiff. She is truly one of the most generous people you will ever meet, and one of the happiest as well. (That is no coincidence, by the way. Remember – the more you give, the more you get). Tiffany and her family “adopted” a Korean exchange student, Wells, a few years ago. The love that they gave that boy – oh man – we all would have wanted to be Wells! I know that they still keep in touch. He’s family. Anyway, Wells offered to cook a ‘native’ meal for the family, which, of course, included kimchee.
I’m a big fan of kimchee, myself. At the same time, though, I’m pretty picky. I have to be awfully careful or I’ll end up exuding the ever enticing aroma of fermented garlic for weeks to come after just one bite. I’m hoping you’ve sensed the wit in that comment. When consumed in extreme moderation, this is my very favorite brand of kimchee:
At one point I attempted to make my own fermented concoction at home. It really is very easy. Very simple. I’ll write that again. It really is very easy. Very simple. I’m craving kimchee. I even recently watched this video tutorial on do-it-yourself raw sauerkraut (pretty much the same thing…) posted by Stephanie McCormack.
It takes too much time.
So, I ended up instead with an amazing meal of braised cabbage and grilled pork chops, finished with fig balsamic vinegar. Brilliant. Savory. Enjoyable. Yum.