These wraps, which I’ve had for lunch for the last three days, illustrate one of the best parts of working from home. Because, are you ready?
When you call your kitchen table your office, this is what happens: you pull open your Google Reader on a casual Tuesday afternoon, see a recipe you’d like to try and, instead of just bookmarking it for later, you walk to the kitchen right that moment, pull out ingredients and, in minutes, see exactly what it tastes like.
Like I said though, that’s just one of the best parts of working from home, and since a couple of you have been wanting an update on the self-employment situation anyway, it’s probably time I told you about some of the other benefits. First of all: It’s been almost five months, can you believe that?
Five months since I set my alarm for the same time every morning. Five months since I said, Oh, I can’t; I have to work.
Five months of setting my own schedule and working fewer hours (and, admittedly, also making less money). People ask me all the time how it’s been going, and I’m sorry to say my standard answer is awful — something about how things are up and down, how I’m still learning what I’m doing, that I’ll reevaluate after six months.
I’ve got to work on that because, really, the truth is: it’s been good. I went through my financial records last week, determining my average monthly income and budgeting time for upcoming projects, and you know what?
It’s been really, really good. I’m not rich, I’m not all sunshine and roses all the time, but every one of my needs has been provided, I’ve gotten several new clients when I lost one, I have the free time like I’ve always wanted.
So while I know myself and therefore realize things may seem very glass-half-empty come tomorrow morning, right now, this moment, I am thankful — thankful to sip homemade chai tea lattes at my computer, to run errands in daylight, to have time to work out or clean or, no kidding, take naps in the afternoon. I am thankful to not be making a lot but to always be making enough.
And I want to remember this feeling.
And ironically, it got me thinking about last November, when I never would have guessed I’d leave my job or, launch into something risky or, work for myself like I’d always wished I could. I’m so glad these changes came, for as long or as short as they end up lasting, and I’m so glad to find myself where I am right now — working in blue jeans while I eat homemade chicken salad wraps, counting my blessings.
Chicken Waldorf Salad Wraps
Adapted from Everybody Likes Sandwiches
Makes 4 to 6 large wraps
Despite how little detail I gave about these wraps in the above point, let me tell you this: they’re great. The salad you wrap in tortillas is at once sweet, crunchy, soft and tart.
It’s a great blend of flavors and textures, making it perfect for wraps, scooped onto crackers or even eaten with a big spoon. Plus, it’s super versatile, easy to adapt with what you have on hand like I did.
1 cup plain yogurt
juice of 1 large orange
salt and pepper to taste
about a cup of baby spinach, shredded & chopped
1 apple, cored and diced
1/2 red onion, diced
leftover cooked chicken, chopped (I used three chicken tenders)
1/2 cup toasted almonds
1/2 cup dried cherries
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
4-6 large or 10-12 small tortillas
In a small bowl, combine the yogurt and orange juice. Set aside.
Combine the spinach, apple, and onion into a large bowl and toss well. Pour dressing over salad, add in the nuts, cherries and sesame seeds and give everything a final toss.
Add a couple large spoonfuls (at least a cup or so) of the salad into the middle of each tortilla and roll tightly, like a burrito, or skip the wrap and just eat as a salad or with crackers!
About Shanna Mallon
Shanna Mallon is a freelance writer who holds an MA in writing from DePaul University. Her work has been featured in a variety of media outlets, including The Kitchn, Better Homes & Gardens, Taste of Home, Houzz.com, Foodista, Entrepreneur, and Ragan PR. In 2014, she co-authored The Einkorn Cookbook with her husband, Tim. Today, you can find her digging into food topics and celebrating the everyday grace of eating on her blog, Go Eat Your Bread with Joy. Shanna lives in Nashville, Tennessee, with Tim and their two small kids.