Tuesday, October 25, 2011

I Burned the Chicken

I spent most of yesterday with my head half in the clouds and half back on the ground. As I trudged through my work day, happy memories floated into the forefront of my focus, many about my own accomplishments and many about my time with Greg.

The night we met...
That killer yoga pose I did last night in class...
The time we fell asleep in the BJ's Restaurant parking lot (in my running car with the doors locked) because we were both tired after dinner but were insistent on going out to a bar afterwards...
Hiking with The Ra...
The press release I got complimented on last week at work...
Swimming in the lake at my grandparent's house...
Greg teasing me mercilessly because I was too chicken to jump off the roof into the lake at my grandparents house (I finally did it, in case you were curious)...

Each time a memory drifted by, I smiled like a kid being handed an ice cream come. Somehow, those glimpses into the past served as motivation for moving through the thick Jello that is the present. That got me thinking about all the sayings out there about letting go and not living in the past. And they are right, mostly. Living in the past is a bad thing because you don't appreciate the present. But it's also important not to forget the good times and even more important to use those good times as fuel to power you through the bad ones ahead.

While I was having this epiphany, the chicken was cooking, and cooking and cooking...

Last night I tried a new Parmesan chicken recipe. It looked super simple:

Take the thawed chicken and brush it lightly with melted butter.
Dunk the buttered chicken in a bowl of breadcrumbs and parm cheese.
Put on a greased baking sheet and bake for about 20 minutes on 450*.
Remove from oven, flip chicken and spoon tomato sauce on top, sprinkle more cheese and bake another 5 minutes until done.
Eat!

Simple, right? Well, not if you accidentally get some of the cheese and breadcrumbs onto the pan as well as the chicken because you are busy daydreaming. Those crumbs tend to burn, causing smoke to completely fill the oven and the kitchen and set off the smoke detector and the dog. Oops!

Don't worry, the fire department did NOT come because I got the battery out of the detector in time, caged the pooch, and cleared the smoke out. The chicken was delicious by the way, and surprisingly NOT burned!

So much for my epiphany...

Today's lesson: Use the past as a force to drive you forward but don't dwell too long or your chicken might burn the house down.

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