By Teri Cayton
The Parsons Advocate
It just occurred to me a short time ago what Mom went through as she was raising me and my siblings. The age difference in us would have put my older sister in the first grade when my baby brother was born. That made Mom taking care of a first grader, two toddlers and a newborn all by herself. She had some help from Gran but she also had Mom’s two other sisters to help.
Mom was the oldest of her siblings and the strongest by far. She could take on the world and still have supper on the table on time. She went through a lot of hardships with her first marriage and didn’t get much help or support from the second. Momma Said, “When the going gets tough the tough get going!” She sure was a tough woman but a good and kind mother.
I see babies having babies these days and dumping the children on parents and grandparents. All they want to do is party and have a good time. I do not understand how people can just discard children as if they are a hobby they don’t have any interest in anymore. Their parents have already raised a family and now have to do it again when they are ready to retire.
I could never imagine Mom dumping us off on anyone and not caring about us. She was there every step of the way. It may not have been smooth sailing all the time but she was there. Times have changed and the family unit is not what it used to be. The days of “Leave It to Beaver” and “The Brady Bunch” are long gone. Momma Said, “If you are going to play, you gotta pay.” So step up and accept responsibility for that life you created. You want to be an adult so act like one.
Chicken Fajita Stuffed Peppers
3/4 cup dry brown rice (2 cups cooked)
- 5 medium red , yellow, orange or green bell peppers
- 1 medium yellow onion , chopped (1 1/2 cups)
- 2 cloves garlic , minced
- 2 Tbsp. canola oil , divided
- 1 lb chicken , diced into 3/4-inch pieces
- 1 tsp. chili powder
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 1/4 tsp. paprika
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 (10 oz.) can tomatoes with green chiles
- 1 cup canned black beans , drained and rinsed
- 1 cup frozen corn
- 3 Tbsp. fresh cilantro , plus more for garnish
- 1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
- 2/3 cup shredded monterey jack cheese
- Sour cream
- Mexican style hot sauce
- Prepare brown rice according to directions listed on package. Halfway through brown rice cooking, preheat oven to 375 degrees and begin making filling and boiling peppers.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cut peppers in half through length (top to bottom), seed and devein peppers, then boil 4 – 5 minutes (fully immersing them in the water), just until tender. Drain well and align in baking pans, set aside.
- Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a large and deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and sauté until golden about 5 minutes. Add garlic and saute 30 seconds longer, transfer onion mixture to a plate. Add remaining 1 Tbsp. oil to skillet, and add chicken, sprinkle with 1/2 tsp. chili powder, 1/2 tsp. cumin, the paprika and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until cooked through, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low, add tomatoes, onion mixture, black beans, corn, cooked brown rice, remaining 1/2 tsp. chili powder, 1/2 tsp. cumin, cilantro, lime juice and season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook just until heated through.
- Add a heaping 1/2 cup of the mixture to each pepper half (and slightly press as filling to fit). Pour enough water into bottom of baking dishes to reach 1/8-inch in height (careful not to pour it in peppers). Cover baking dishes with foil and bake 30 – 35 minutes, until peppers are soft. Remove from oven, sprinkle tops evenly with cheese then return to oven to bake until cheese has melted, about 3 minutes longer.
- Serve warm topped with more cilantro, sour cream and hot sauce if desired.