Cool As A Cucumber

Making cucumber kimchi and sledding down icy hills helped us keep it chill this weekend.

Six weeks into the new year and I’ve been working hard at my resolution: to be the calm in T’s storm.

It’s a life lesson I wish I could’ve applied earlier in my parenting journey – especially now that T’s recent FASD diagnosis confirmed emotional regulation is an area of impairment.

You can’t change the past and can only focus on the blank slate of the now.

I recently saw this image posted on a FASD parenting group and it resonated with me.

When I respond with anything but calm during T’s fight or flight moments, it’s throwing gas into a forest fire. It never turns out well.

The hubby and I have many recent conversations about how much better our mornings and evenings are when we don’t react during T’s moments with anything but calm.

Sure, I’ve bitten half my tongue off, but seeing a positive change in T has been gratifying. It’s paying off in dividends.

Even his CYW says he’s using better strategies and making better choices in school.

There are bumps throughout each day, don’t get me wrong, but I’m focusing on the big picture.

Oi Kimchi

Speaking of keeping it cool as a cucumber, I made Oi (cucumber) Kimchi this weekend, one of my favourite side dishes commonly served at Korean restaurants.

I found this @MyHealthyDish recipe and was excited at how easy it was to make. I also had all the ingredients at home.

I chopped six baby cucumbers into thin slices.

Then tossed it into a bowl and mixed it with 1 tablespoon of salt. I let it sit for 5 minutes to let water seep out of the cucumber.

After draining the water, I tossed in 1 sliced onion, 6 stalks of sliced green onions (green part), and 6 cloves of minced garlic.

Then I added in 2 tablespoons of gochugaru (ground dried red chili flakes), 1 tablespoon of sugar, 1/4 cup of rice wine vinegar, 1/4 cup of sesame oil and a splash of toasted sesame seeds.

For the best results, I let it sit overnight in the fridge and voila.

I prepared it on Friday night, the most soul-soothing way to unwind after a work week.

I served it on Saturday for dinner with jasmine rice, kimchi and grilled steak.

Sunday Sledding

On Sunday, after breakfast, with zero fuss, T sat with me and zipped through his learning activities.

He did such a great job with his three beginning consonant sound assignments.

These are the parenting wins I hang onto and that motivate me to keep going.

By the way, does this image circled in red below look like a plate? I had no idea what the hell it was and T looked at me bemusedly and blurted out quickly, “It’s a plate!”

Rings of Saturn was my guess!

After brunch with family, we went for an afternoon of sledding at the park.

With wind chill, it was a blistering -15 degrees. Who needs Botox when you have Canadian winters?

The giant hill was covered in ice and boy did it make sledding quite the rush.

As T and the hubby zipped down the hill and past me standing up at the bottom, my hands buried deep in my warm jacket pocket, I smiled and cheered them on loudly.

22 thoughts on “Cool As A Cucumber

    1. Thank you. I don’t have time to cook much but when I do, I really enjoy it. I really want to try making diniguan one day. Seems very intimidating! But it’s on the cooking bucket list. 🙏

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I always look forward to reading your experiences with T. I love this approach to helping children regulate and the graphic. It sounds like it is making such a good difference. Your weekend and your Oi Kimchi sound pretty wonderful. too ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, LaDonna. I know you work with families who face similar situations so I know you can totally understand when I say it’s one of those life lessons I wish I learned and applied earlier. But alas, we can only focus on the here and now! 🙏

      The “cool as a cucumber” approach definitely helped today when we had quite an unexpected change in T’s life (his CYW moved to a new job). It’s been quite the emotional day for all of us, especially poor T, but we kept it cool and kept the emotions as calm as possible. Gonna be an interesting next while over here but all we can do is stay calm and help him process his big emotions. 😊

      I’m gonna need more than kimchi to get through this! 😆😆😆 Please take care and stay well.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ab, I’m so sorry to hear this. It’s hard ( to under state) when a connection is made and trust established then the person has to move on. I am sending you all lots of care as you navigate this transition and loss.

        And yes my primary work is in attachment related need. I do have an incredible amount of respect and appreciation for parents who support and help children in this way. I truly believe relational strategies make the most profound and needed difference💗. This really is one of the reasons I do look forward to your blog. You truly are dedicated and genuine in the realities of parenting children with deep need. 💗💗

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thanks LaDonna. Attachment and loss are things we were quite fortunate to have had an easier time with during adoption. We’ve learned so much about relational strategies over the years. Kids sure keep us on our toes!

        I do see that this recent change is going to be a more challenging emotional one for T. He seems better this morning. The proof will be in the pudding when he goes into school without his familiar support. 🤞🏻🤞🏻🤞🏻

        Have a great Wednesday. 😊 One day closer to the weekend!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, it’s a wonderful recipe! My only suggestion is less sesame oil and more vinegar and sugar. 🙂 And kids are so lovely in that they don’t over complicate things like adults do!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Beautiful post, as always! I had to look up the origin of cool as a cucumber the the says that on a warm day, the inside of a field cucumber can be 20 degrees cooler that the air. Wow!

    And as always, you had me laughing (that you’ve bitten off half your tongue), relating (love the FASD image) and cheering you on. I’m so impressed — and inspired!

    So glad you were at the bottom of the hill. Sounds like the best place to be with temperatures that cold and a hill of ice! 🙂 Happy Monday and Happy Valentine’s Day!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Wynne! I love that interesting trivia you shared. I did not know that. Cucumbers are such interesting plants aren’t they. No wonder they are so soothing.

      And a happy Valentines and Monday to you as well! 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Keeping calm is a great resolution. It’s easier said than done, but sounds like you and the hubby are really trying to make an effort not to react. It’s great to see that it’s already making a big difference, which I’m sure provides good motivation to keep calm and carry on (I couldn’t resist slipping that saying in!) The Oi Kimchi looks amaaaaazing and I’m surprised at how easy it is to make. Glad to hear you got outdoors despite the cold.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Linda. I feel like I’m beating a dead horse with the keeping calm message sometimes in my recent posts but it really has been the breakthrough. 😆 I love Korean food and this one was a real surprise to make as it was so easy! And the outdoor time was so fun. Super cold but very refreshing.

      Happy Monday! And long weekend ahead!

      Liked by 1 person

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