As many of you have already heard via Facebook & Twitter, I, Kimberly A. Morales, a.k.a. Poor Girl, finally got a job. A real, permanent, full-time, this-might-actually-pay-my-bills-once-I-catch-up JOB!!! Though I received the offer a few weeks ago, I held off on announcing it because I wanted to make sure that nothing would stand in the way of such amazing news. No more temping, no more worrying about things like holidays or illnesses cutting into my paycheck because I didn’t have basic things like a holiday or sick pay; I’m like a citizen of the world again, and though I know no job is perfect, I’m ecstatic & grateful to be employed.
But I can’t get too carried away just yet. I have a long, hard road ahead, filled with catching up on some seriously delinquent rent & utilities, and getting back to whittling down the debt that put me in the “poor girl” situation eons before these last two painfully difficult years. I’m definitely not out of the woods yet, especially since my first 3-4 paychecks will all go to my landlord, but dammit, I have a job! Every once in a while I still pinch myself to make sure I’m not dreaming, and apparently I’m not because I can feel & see all the tiny little bruises that come from the disbelief. Yesterday was my first day of training and there will be much more of that in the next couple of weeks, but it’s real folks! I’m employed!
Because I’m still dealing with my broken toe/metatarsal issues and had a lot of post-yard sale clean-up & Christmas decorating to do, I held off on having my celebratory dinner until this evening. As many of you regulars know, I love celebrating momentous occasions with some fabulous dish, and this definitely qualifies as one. But because I’m working only with serious bare-bones food until at least the middle of January – minus some good stuff I still had in the freezer – I didn’t want to break into said good stuff until I had a good reason to do so. I had some nice boneless pork chops in the freezer and plenty of crisp, juicy Braeburn apples in Big Bowl, so I thought I’d make something delicious with this classic ingredient combo. But I didn’t want to make the usual pork chops & applesauce (insert Peter Brady impression here); I wanted something different with a bit more kick and pork & apple fajitas seemed like the perfect solution.
I’d been flirting with the idea of making this dish for a while and I’m glad I finally made it happen. It’s hearty and tasty, the crisp sweetness of the apples accented by brown sugar creating the perfect accompaniment to the cumin-spiced pork & aromatic veggies. The dish is special enough to be celebration dinner-worthy but easy enough to whip up quickly on a weeknight. And because the pork has been sliced into strips and mixed with plenty of veggies and fruit, this is not only a flavorful dinner but a filling one that will serve at least three people generously. This is a great way to remember to think outside the box – or the plastic-wrapped meat package – to make the most out of the little bit you have.