June 3, 2011

Day 130...

I decided to throw things together today that were in need of being used before they are no good. Here is what I came up with...

3 Carrots, 1 Cucumber, 1 Granny Apple, 1 Orange, 1/2 Lemon, big handful of spinach and a large cutting of wheat grass.

 I am not sure what effects I will get from such a large cutting of wheat grass but I wanted to use it before it lost all of its power. Everything tastes good together. As you can see, I started drinking and then remembered to snap a picture.

Blessings to you today!

May 30, 2011

Day 126...

 Morning Yummy

1 big handful spinach
4 carrots
1 celery
1 orange

This blend made about 10oz of juice for my breakfast. It was really good.

Rule of Thumb
The 2-1 Ratio

Whenever you are doing anything concerning a healthy food choice life style, there is an easy tendency to vacilate towards fruits because they hit the yummy spot easily. Be mindful of that though and try to always have at least a ratio of 2 to 1 for veggies over fruits. The veggies and the extra vitamins will help to counter act the sugars of the fruit. Think of your fruit as more of a bonus to all the wonderful goodness veggies give you.

Blessings to you today.

May 26, 2011

Day 122...

What doesn't work.....

Today I went through my refridgerator to juice whatever I put my hands to. I did half a honeydew melon, a big leaf of kale, a handful of parsley, a clump of wheat grass, 2 kiwi and a bit of celery.

I suppose it was loaded with all sorts of health benefits but in retrospect I think it was too green. The combination of kale, parsley and wheat grass sat heavy on my stomach for quite a while.

Lesson learned. Must be more careful in blending experiment choices.
Oh well, it is still fun.

Blessings to you today!

May 25, 2011

Day 121...

Last night I wanted to play with my juicer and see what kinds of concocting I could create.
I combined a half of a honeydew melon with a leaf of kale, a bit of parsley, a granny apple and some celery. Yum! My family loves to sample the juices that are created and I need to make mental note to make sure there is more than what I plan on drinking because by the time my glass gets around the circle and back to me there isn't much left.

This morning I used these ingredients for breakfast.....

Yum Wake Up

2 ribs celery
4 carrots
1 granny apple
1/2 lemon (without the peel)
big handful of spinach
nice clump of wheat grass

This is too much fun! My brother and baby niece came over while I was creating. Little Angel had a taste and gave a big surprised tasty lip smacking look. My brother had a taste and licked his lips as he tried to pick out all the ingredients on his palate. When I told him what was in it he laughed at me in shock and sort of shook his head at his crazy health crazy sister.

God bless you today with health, wisdom and favor!

May 24, 2011

Day 120...

 Today's breakfast...

I found several detox recipes on the web and wrote down the ones that sounded most appealing. Now I am trying out different ones each time I play with my juicer. This one didn't call for an apple but I put a Granny Smith in it just for a bit of sweet.

 Detox (Revised)

1 cucumber
1 cup spinach
1 cup parsley
2 celery ribs
1/2 lemon without peel
1 granny smith apple

This is so tasty! Looks green, tastes green, but has a really nice flavor kick to it. Now I can't decide which one I like better. I guess that is good. Then I can alternate between drinks and not get bored.

Last night Hubby and I went out to red Robin and shared a chicken wrap. It felt good to know that we were being health conscious while not breaking our budget but still having different flavors. We also ordered a batch of their fried zucchini. Yum! I knowthe fried part isn't worthy of applause but it was still good.

We also started an adventure yesterday of taking our filtered water to the next level. We now have ionized water in our house. I have been hearing the benefits of it for quite some time now so we shall see how things go. Hubby says he can already feel a difference. Though his arthritis always gives him a hard time in the morning, he commented that there was nothing sore when he rolled out of bed. 
Hmmmm...very interesting.

Have a blessed and wonderful day today.

May 23, 2011

Day 119....

 I have a juicer....the one I had been wanting for a while! I am so excited! I got it in the mail on Thursday and then went and did all of my produce shopping over the weekend. Yesterday I began putting my plan together in earnest. It is so fun and easy! 
 My breakfast today was a detox recipe that I found online.
Good Morning Detox

1 Apple
1 Celery Rib
1 Big Handful of Spinach
4 Carrots
1/2 Lemon without the rind

Then I added a clump of wheat grass to it all because....my machine can do wheat grass too.   :-)

 Yum! It tastes so refreshing! 
Even my girls said it was good.
Now I am ready for my day.

Thank you God for my juicer. I love being able to get my nutrition in without feel so bulky full all the time.

God bless your day richly!

April 5, 2011

Day 71.....

Here I am sitting at my laptop enjoying the recipe I shared earlier called Freshness.  The romaine was a little on the tart side this go round so I added a couple of kiwi to perk it up. Yum!

While Kiwi Enjoyment is still my ultimate favorite, here is another recipe taken from Green For Life that I have fallen in love with that I think you will enjoy.

Minty Thrill
2 pears cored
2 kale leaves
1/4 bunch fresh mint
1 cup water

 I have been going to tons of different websites trying to decide what I want in a juicer. The questions in my head as well as the info given have taken on a mind of their own as Pandora's box grew in size.

Do I want a juicer or a mega blender? Do I want it to do basic fruits and veggies or get more techie with wheat grass features? Do I want a centrifugal motor or an auger? Single auger or double? How much money do I want to spend? (Ha! There is the clincher)
Everyone I know that "juices" has their own suggestions, styles, products and expectations. None are wrong but none have quite seemed to "fit" what I want...especially when I haven't quite known what I want.

I do know that I have wanted a bigger performance than the $30 model on the Walmart shelf but still haven't been sure if the $600 commitment of a power monger Vitamix was overkill for me. But I think I have now finally decided. I am going to be saving up my money for a UK brand Matstone Juicer.

It is a single auger style that can do top performance on all the regular produce while still giving special attention to leafy greens and wheat grass. Because it is a single auger it will be basically quiet instead of sounding like an airplane in my kitchen. That means slower juice time but I am willing to trade speed for performance. I watched a few youtube demonstration videos on it and can see the left over pulp fiber is very dry. And because it is a slow auger, it doesn't put any temperature heat to the produce which is a personal preference of mine.

I am excited. I wish I could purchase it right now. Sigh.....
But God knows and He will provide what is best and in the right time.

Daddy God thank You for the way you made our bodies and provided all we could possibly need to be a finely tuned machine.  It is because of Your thoughtful artistry that You were able to look at us and say, "It is very good."  Thank You for the variety of flavors and colors and smells and visual beauty just to bring us delight.

Have a blessed and wonderful destiny filled day!

March 24, 2011

Day 59....

 Oh my goodness I can't believe how much time has gone by! Yikes! I am either super consistent or I fail miserably. One of these days I am praying to find a balancing middle line where I am not one extreme or the other.

 So how has the last 20 days been for me? They have been good.....mostly good.....a little bad.....a little on the side of binging here and there but I am learning things about myself.So instead beating myself up I choose to say that learning and moving forward is my focal point.

Yes I did say that I binged and more than once to be honest. But my new version of binging is a couple spoons of humus and pita chips instead of a whole bag of cookies or giant bowl of ice cream.  And I found that for a few days in a row I ate several handfuls of gingersnaps......because ginger is natural food right? haa haa Actually I found them in my hand and mouth without the slightest thought of purposing for them to be there.

I have learned that having carbs is a very sensitive thing for me. I have to be so very careful of what I allow myself or I really notice the difference. If I choose to do something like a 6" veggie sandwich at Subway (loaded veggies are a good choice right?) but there is something in the bread (or too much of it) makes me so groggy and hard to think. I could go to bed and sleep the day away.

I have learned that if I allow myself a little carb each day (like pita chips or ginger snaps for example) it sabotages my desire for raw healthy produce in the blink of an eye. Pretty soon images of cookies and doritos with nacho sauce are floating through my head and I pace the kitchen in agitation.

Sometimes the past few weeks have felt like a mountain that is so steep I surely must need an anchor rope to take a single step. I wondered, "Good grief where did my motivation go? How do I get back the fun and joy I was experiencing?"

I made myself go back to the beginning of my journey.
Yeah! Thank you God for giving me the foresight to keep a journal.
It has been a tough week but I am starting to see the end of the tunnel now as I re-cleanse my body of fillers and replace it with good healthy foods.

It reminds me very much of a parallel with spending time with God. What I mean by that is when I have a couple of days where I take the "I am busy approach" and say I don't have time to sit with God in prayer....all of a sudden other things want to build up and take precedence. Then I have to really purpose to sit with God and at first it feels awkward because everything else is circling my thoughts wanting a piece of me. But the more time I spend with God then everything balances out and I feel better....peaceful and whole.

Salads are starting to be fun again and I am getting a kick out of experimenting with different smoothies that help get produce into my system in different ways.  Here are some different recipes that have caught my attention from a book called Green For Life and all these are to be put in a blender if you are interested in trying them yourself.

6-8 Romaine leaves
1/2 Honeydew melon seeded and no rind
2 cups water

Summer Delight
6 peaches
2 handfuls Spinach Leaves
2 cups water

Kiwi Enjoyment
4 ripe kiwi skinned
1 banana
3 stalks celery
2 cups water

What am I loving about making smoothies?

  • They are full of flavor and nutrients.
  • The water in the produce as well as the smoothie help keep me hydrated.
  • The variety helps stave away boredom.
  • They are quick and oh so easy.
  • The produce doesn't have to be in pristine condition since it is going to be blended anyway.
  • All recipes are subject to easy change according to what is in my refrigerator.
 Do you have a healthy smoothie recipe to share? I'd love to hear it.

Take care and be blessed.

March 5, 2011

Day 40....

 Eating salads are way too much fun when we go out on the town. Many restaurants put together yummy combinations of fruits and vegetables that I haven't thought of on my own. And it is always nice to have someone else do the making instead of me.My husband and I have been going out on Friday nights lately to enjoy one another and try out different eateries in the area.

This particular salad was one I had last night from Panera Bread and Cafe'. It is called a Fuji Apple Chicken Salad. It is antibiotic free and I was thrilled to find that the chicken didn't taste "dead". I ate most of my chicken instead of shoving it to the side for a future hubby salad.
For my own personal preferences I omitted the onions and pecans. (Until my recent experience of liking soaked almonds I have never been a nut person and I am not brave enough to try pecans just yet.)  I think also next time I will omit the Gorgonzola as it reminded me a bit too much of blue cheese.

 This salad was my husband's choice. It was a Thai Chopped Chicken Salad. It was slightly on the spicy side for his personal taste but he enjoyed it all the same and felt happily full when he bowl was empty.

 This salad was one that I went nuts over while having dinner recently with a friend at the Roadhouse Grill. I was silently sceptical at the thought of being able to order a healthy type of dinner there but was tickled with delight at my salad and am already thinking on when I will soon be able to go back again.

This was a Veggie Style Harvester Special with lemon dill dressing. I omitted the feta cheese because that makes me think of blue cheese also. It was my first experience of having artichoke hearts (aside from spinach artichoke dip) and I loved it! I wonder how many other foods I am going to find that I love that I was never brave enough to try before?

As I type away this morning, I am enjoying my breakfast smoothie that has become a staple for both myself and my husband. Then I will be going grocery shopping to fill up our dwindling produce stock. I find getting groceries to be more fun now that I am buying all of these amazing fresh colors and flavors instead of processed salt and "empty" carbohydrate filled boxes.

Happy eating and God bless your day with encouragement as you discover the many blessings He put here just to make you smile.

March 3, 2011

Day 38....

I have been having fun with my daughter's camera today. While I am completely jealous that I don't have such a good camera, I am so thrilled that she lets me use hers at will. It does so much better than my little cell phone app.

These Trio bars I found at Costco a few weeks ago. My husband and I both love them. They are gluten, dairy, preservative and additive free. Each bar promises to hold a variety of 3 types of nuts, 3 types of seeds and 3 fruits. They are also low in sodium which is now a plus for my husband.

The nuts offer a super nice crunch to satisfy those munchy cravings while all of the ingredients work together to be a nutritious snack that holds you without a sugar crash.

I keep a couple in my purse and have used them as an offering to my hungry teenagers when we are out and about. They gobble them up with no complaints.

Don't I sound like a commercial?
I just really like them. And I realized today that we are almost out of our supply so I had better get some more.

This is my lunch for today. I was starting to feel a little bored with my food choices and looked around online for solutions in varying up the show and combination without sacrificing ease. 

Here is what I did:
- I peeled a cucumber, sliced it down the middle & scooped out the inner seed core.

- In my food processor I tossed in a handful of almonds, 1/4 avocado, 1/4 yellow squash and 5 cherry tomatoes.

- I pulsed it to a consistency I liked and added garlic powder, onion powder and a small amount of shredded cheese. 

- The last step was to fill the carved out portion of the cucumber with the mixture and then enjoy.

This particular recipe was called a cucumber sandwich because you could put the two cucumber halves together and wrap them in saran wrap to throw in your lunch bag and eat later. I chose to leave it as a boat just because I thought it was too pretty to cover.  I had one boat last night for dinner and was surprisingly full so I saved the rest of it for today and am enjoying it as I type.

I added a couple of websites to the side bar that you might find of helpful interest in the area of raw foods information and recipe ideas.

God bless you!

February 27, 2011

Day 34.....

Here is a preview of my breakfast this morning. I know it looks interesting to say the least, but it sure held me today and made my tummy and body energy happy for a handful of hours.  It is:

1 cup carrot juice
1 avocado
1 banana
1 pear
3 red swiss chard

I don't have a juicer but I found at my grocery store that they have a cold section in the produce area that has fresh bottled organic 100% juices.  I figure that if I am careful with allotting out my juice maybe I can do that for a while until I figure out what I really want in a juicer.

The last several days have been hard for me in the area of food cravings. Specifically I have been craving carbohydrates and junk food.  It has made me very edgy and irritable and I have hated it while trying to figure out what in the world is wrong with me. It finally dawned on me yesterday that I had not grabbed a handful of almonds in a few days. I know that sounds way too easy of an answer but it is the solution. I ate a few last night and felt completely better.

Almonds are so packed with energy, protein and tons of other nutrients. That handful I had every day must have really balanced out my snack cravings more than I realized. 

It is such a daily journey to learn to listen to my body. I feel so much better now that I am eating healthy. Now when I eat something that is not a "healthy" food, I really notice how it makes me feel. I can't believe I used to feel this way all the time and thought it was normal.  For example, I made a loaf of banana chocolate chip bread for my family tonight and I ate a slice. Now my stomach is cramped up and I am wishing I would have ignored the warm smell from the oven.  How I feel now sure doesn't match what my emotional memory told me it would be like. And it used to be so normal to have at least 3 slices before the evening was over with.

Cooking is turning out to be quite an adventure. With my husband needing to be on a low salt diet and me preferring raw, I have to think a little bit more in the kitchen now. It is fun to revamp all of our favorite recipes and I am excited at how he is so open to new flavors.

Here is a snack I created for him today that he went nuts over. My husband has always enjoyed a tasty bowl of popcorn with lots of flavor. But that flavor comes at a price right?  Here is what I did to fix that.
I melted 3 TBSP of coconut oil in a pot and added 1 TBSP of Agave Nectar. Then shook it all together with 1/3 cup of popping corn over the stove until it was all done. He loved it and there was no guilt or worry attached to it.

Sigh.....ok I need to go drink some water and filter out this banana bread.
Take care and be amazingly blessed. Have fun with food and experiment with the awesome things that God created for us.

February 22, 2011

Day 29....

 It has been a couple of days since I stopped by. I have been doing well. Just didn't really know what else to write except "doing good and enjoying my produce".  But then I remind myself that the whole point of these posts are so that I can keep track of my ups and downs.

I have crested over the hardships of the dreaded 21st day, which for some reason has always been a hard thing for me to overcome whenever creating a new habit. Now I am nearing day 40 and I read in different areas that it takes 40 days to build and create a new habit.

I have to confess that while I am working hard at not making this a thing to idolize and take up all of my thoughts, it of course takes up a lot of my thoughts as I learn and figure new ways of doing things. I have also noticed that the past few days as I let myself do things like have that piece of cheesecake on the ship, that the carb cravings and emotional "I wants" are knocking at the door of my mind.

While I am trying hard to remember to not EVER let myself have and do things, I also don't want ot all of a suddewn wake up and find that all of my victories are gone because of my own lazy thinknig.
Sigh...each day is a new day and I trust You God for your guidance.

Yummies of the day....
This morning I brewed a pot of organic coffee. Wow! Funny how things change with perspective. When my wonderful and ever encouraging beach friend shared with me 6 months ago a place that made organic grounds I didn't see the value of it. But now I am sold.

Once I had my glass of water, cup of coffee and second glass of water; I opened the 2nd half of a smoothie I made yesterday. It was so good! This blender batch was as follows....

1 banana
1 avocado
1 apple
2/3 cup orange juice
1/4 cup lemon juice (to help fight discoloration)
3 red chard leaves
3 handfuls of ice


Later in the evening....

It is late in the evening now but I wanted to share what we did for dinner.  The girls had been craving mexican food and I brainstormed about what to do that could be yummy but not taxing on my husband's new low sodium plan.

I looked online for a low salt enchilada sauce recipe and then created everything else myself.
For the filling I used a rinsed batch of low salt black beans and rinsed batch of low salt kidney beans. I sauteed an onion and cooked up 3/4 cup of Basmatti rice. I also added a couple of handfuls of shredded cheese and part of the enchilada filling. It took some doing at the grocery store but I finally found that the brand "Don Pancho" is a tortilla that is low in sodium while being high in protein and fiber.

Below is the sauce recipe if you are interested. I doubled the batch to make a 9x13 pan with 9 enchiladas in it.  I liked it because it was simple, tasted good and didn't take a lot of cooking prep like most enchilada sauces normally take.

Low Sodium Enchilada Sauce
16 oz. no salt added tomato sauce
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. cumin

Simply stir ingredients together and then put your enchiladas together as normal and bake until cheese is melted and filling is bubbling.

Blessings to you tonight.

February 19, 2011

Week 4 - Days 6 & 7......

Yesterday I did some thrift shop combing in hopes of finding a juicer. I am not ready to spend the money on a brand new one but figured if I could find one for a nominal fee then it would be nice to play with every now and again.  I saw a couple of super cheap ones that I wasn't comfortable with and then laid eyes on a Jack Lalane model. Praise God for my beach friend! She has one and I was able to get her on the phone to walk me through checking for all the parts.  Without her help I would have entertained the idea of spending $40 on a useless kitchen appliance because important parts were missing.

Today we surprised our parents with an amazing lunch cruise on the river for their 25th anniversary. We had such a wonderful time and the weather was perfect!

Leading up to the fun and food of the excursion, I tried to plan my food choices over the past couple of days accordingly because I knew my "raw food" choices would not be on the menu. I focused on eating lots of veggies and nothing extra (like honey sticks or Trio bars). This morning I had the 2nd half of the smoothie made the day before. And then lots and lots of water.

The lunch today did taste really good and I completely enjoyed it. There were appetizers of large prawns and cocktail sauce. Then I chose a cheese filled tortellini with vegetables for my main meal. For dessert I let myself enjoy a slice of Bailey's Creme cheesecake.

Despite my leading up precautions, it didn't take long for me to begin that dizzy feeling. I never felt overly nauseous and I am glad for that because this isn't supposed to be a life choice that changes the way I relate and spend time with people. (My beach friend lovingly reminds me that this is a thing to go with the flow with and not make it a religion.)

By the time we got back in the car, I was feeling so full and heavy and very tired. I guess my body set to work at digesting and took all the energy from everywhere else. It amazes me that this is how I used to feel all the time and I thought it was normal. Once home, I crawled into bed and slept for a handful of hours. I still feel very full and sleepy now but I am up to push a bit of water in hopes of helping my body cope and get over the hump.

I am now at the end of 4 weeks and thinking about the changes in me.
Over these past few weeks I have noticed a change in my skin, gums, and hair. My nose smells more acutely, taste buds are refined and my sinuses are clear. I don't snore anymore, don't feel bloated and don't swell. My clothes are getting loose and I have lost a solid 8 pounds this month. I know I talk about being tired but my energy really is so much better than it used to be and my thought patterns aren't so scattered.
Another perk is that all of these changes is making my self esteem and personal confidence in myself go up.
I am really excited!

God bless you with peace and excitement as you pursue your destiny.

February 17, 2011

Week 4 - Day 5.....

 I discovered the most amazing smoothie today! I am sure someone in the world created it before I did but I stumbled onto it just by looking around the kitchen when I was hungry for a late lunch. I recommend it highly! It is refreshing and packed with all the nutrients you could possibly need.  Here is what to do.....

 In your blender put:
1 pear cut up with washed skin and no core
1 banana broken in pieces
1 avocado minus skin and core seed
1 cup orange juice
2 handfuls of ice

The nutritional content is amazing! It is loaded with potassium, protein, fiber, healthy carbohydrates and many vitamins and minerals. You can make it all together and then refrigerate half for the next day.
I am telling you it is a drink you will not regret! Even those in my house that cringe at the thought of avocados said it tasted good.  All of the flavors blend lightly together and nothing stands out harshly.
I am thinking I would love to drink it every morning for my morning meal.

(*note: 2/18/2011  I put a single red chard leaf in as well to begin my day with more fiber. It didn't harshen the taste and I am ready to tackle my day.)

As I go about buying produce and weighing out the pros and cons of organic versus commercial and the cost of everything, I have found this chart to be very helpful. Organic vs. Commercial

Be blessed and enjoy the wonderful things God has given to us.

Week 4 - Day 4.....

 Hello hello hello....
Here I am with another late night and I am tired.....again.
It is not the food that is making me tired. It is my schedule of this last week. The healthy food is actually helping me to get through my day with more energy and more clear thought patterns.  I noticed today that I am not tripping over my words as much as before and I am starting to be able to find my mental dictionary again instead of drawing a blank in mid conversational sentence.

I attended an all day seminar today on health wellness. The topics were:

  1. "5 Simple Steps to Wellness" by Beni Johnson  1:01
  2. "Stress, Digestion & Gluten: The Untold Story" by Ronda Nelson 1:02
  3. "Hijacked by Your Hormones" by Ronda Nelson 1:00
  4. "The Benefits of Juicing" by Beni Johnson :53
  5. "The Root of the Problem: Is it Physical or Spiritual?" by Ronda Nelson 1:09
 Wow! I came home with so much information. I typed as fast as I could and brought study papers home. Plus I have access to the audios so I need to work on getting those burned as well.

What is something I learned today that I can share real quick?
In learning the importance of water today I was told of a formula for knowing the right amount of water to drink. Take your body weight and divide in half. That number is the number of ounces you should be drinking in a day.  Wow!

I learned how allergies happen. It is too long an explanation to go into detail tonight but the bottom line is that almost always an allergy shows itself because of a breakdown in the digestive system. The allergy is a only a flag waving in the air so that you will pay attention to the fact that something is off with your body.

 I also learned that gluten intolerance is so much more prevalent these days because the grains are not the same as God intended them to be. In our smart knowledge of wanting to hybrid engineer everything so it produces more for less......we have created grain to have more gluten in it. Some scientists say up to 400% more. That gluten is essentially glue holding together the grain and nutrients. That extra glue then gets stuck in our systems and gets us all gummed up.

There is so much more to share but I will have to divulge in pieces.

Here is a picture of the beginnings of my lunch today. I finally got out my Daddy's food processor. What a blessing! I blended a cucumber, 3 bell peppers and 3 handfuls of soaked almonds. Then I spooned it into a big lettuce leaf at lunch time and had a healthy wrap. It tasted good and was packed with nutrition.

Ok it is time for me to go to bed. That is definitely something I have to work on. Sleep is an area I fail in miserably. 5am always comes too early and events carry me late into the evening. Then I want to sit with the house quiet so I can unwind doing my own thing....like this. Doing my own thing is good but lack of sleep is sabotaging me just as well as putting an open box of chocolates in front of me.

Be blessed.

February 15, 2011

Week 4 - Day 3.....

 I was lazy and busy today all at the same time so it didn't even occur to me to eat until about 11am. I mixed together a serving of yogurt and a serving of peaches to make my tummy happy.

Later in the day when I did our grocery shopping I packed a baggie of sliced apples and a honey stick. They really helped me out a lot with fighting off temptations. Walking the store isles doesn't bother me at all now. It was the seasoned smell of pizza coming from the attached parlor that had me a little tense.
I bought half of my produce today as organic when the prices were justifiable. I figure if all of my food intake is raw then I should make sure to not have pesticides and junk going in my body as well.

For dinner I made shrimp salads for my husband and me. I did have a few pieces of shrimp but they didn't thrill my taste buds and they got left on the side of my plate.

I have been hearing more and more about dairy not being in the regime of a raw diet but I haven't decided what I want to think of that just yet. I could leave the yogurt and never miss it. But having cream in my coffee and a slice of cheese for a snack.....well those things I am too attached to. I haven't made a decision about meat either but it feels like my taste buds are making the decision for me. Every time I put meat in my mouth it doesn't satisfy me in the least. The chicken from last night that was on my salad.....I finally figured out a word today that describes the taste to me. It tasted dead. I know that must sound ridiculous but it is the only thing that fits for me. I guess eating things for this last month that are all alive and bursting with vital nutrients has made me recognize on a different level when something is cooked.

Good night and God bless.

February 14, 2011

Week 4 - Day 2.....

I am actually writing this post a day late. It is important for me to keep my own daily track of what I am doing and learning about myself. I was frustrated with myself at not writing last night but was just too sleepy to sit at the computer. Today is a new day though so let's see.....

I completely sabotaged myself! I could say that it was because of it being Valentine's Day. I could say I was stressed or had too much to do. But none of those excuses are entirely correct. Now that I can look back on it all, I simply wanted. It is not that I was craving anything at all because I really wasn't. It was just an emotional habit of "oh look at what is on the counter. Let's have some.

And really, in the grand scheme of things I didn't blow it like what "blowing it" used to be like. I had a small bowl of popcorn with all the salty flavors and sugars. Then I grabbed 2 chocolate candies. The second candy I ended up spitting out because I felt a huge wave of being nauseous and then dizzy.  I thought that was really interesting.

I spent the rest of my daytime drinking water to filter out the yuck I did to it and ate an apple when I finally started feeling hunger.

At night my husband took me out for a romantic dinner.  I chose to eat an oriental chicken salad. Most of the chicken I either gave to my husband or set on the side of my plate. A couple of the small pieces I let myself nibble on but they didn't taste the yummy way I remembered. I also let myself have a small slice of the cheesy bread.

All in all it wasn't a complete failure I guess if I think about what I used to do. Plus it is so interesting to be able to notice how my body is talking to me about what I do.
So no more dwelling on the past. Let's more forward.

February 13, 2011

Week 3 - Day 7 & Week 4 - Day 1.....

It was too busy a weekend to blog last night. We had a big conference at church and a couple of our 19 guest speakers that had driven up from California stayed with us. That meant lots of fun and lots of staying up late sharing stories and encouragements.  It was so good.

For food, I made a conscious effort to keep my purse stocked with healthy choices and a huge cold water bottle.  I really enjoyed keeping a fresh baggie of soaked almonds for snacking and peeling the skins was nice for finger fiddling.

We also attended a friend's wedding on Saturday. I allowed myself a piece of wedding cake thinking it would be a treat but I was sorely mistaken. I ate most of the piece waiting for each bite to be more satisfying and eventually gave up. The cake was dry and heavy and the frosting ended up tasting like a mouthful of butter.

I have noticed that with allowing myself a few extras here and there like the cake, I am really feeling the old cravings pull me and the old emotional eating habits are knocking on the door of my thoughts pretty strong. I think it would do me good to really push the water tomorrow and do basic produce with no frills to ride it out.

It has been a good couple of days and tomorrow is a new day that moves forward.
Blessings to you!

February 11, 2011

Week 3 - Day 6.....

I know that I am all about the ease of grabbing a single piece of produce right now and enjoying not having to think about any sort of preparation. But good-golly my mouth watered when I saw this scrumptious artwork at the sushi bar of the local grocery store.

 It was comprised of shredded carrots, cucumber and red cabbage were wrapped in lettuce leaves and then wrapped again with strips of avocado and tapioca paper. It also came with a package of sweet chili sauce. 

The ingredients were so simple but they worked together to send me over the edge. I thought I would eat one for lunch and save the rest for another meal. But I couldn't wait. No, actually I simply didn't want to wait.  I ate both wraps for my lunch and still didn't feel hungry at dinner time. I munch on veggies throughout the evening all the same just for the sake of having good food in me. It feels good.

I was at a meeting all evening and found my soaked almonds to be fun as well as tasty.  I have learned that once they have soaked, the skin peels of really easy. It makes for an even more appealing and sweeter taste. Plus it keeps me from shoving things in my mouth by the handful out of habit.

I am also realizing that my taste buds are changing. I commented to my daughter that the coffee seems really strong and I wondered what was different about that processing batch. She just laughed at me and said, "Mom the coffee is the same. It is you that is doing the changing."  Gosh, she is right. 
Lord, I enjoy tea but I really love the cuddle taste of my coffee.  I won't eventually give it up will I?

Blessings to you tonight.

Week 3 - Day 5.....

 This was my dinner tonight. It consisted of 3 chard, a cucumber, a tomato, carrots, 3 bell peppers, a dash of orange juice and a scoop of yogurt.

I didn't feel like crunching on anything so I put all my salad veggies in the blender. It was a little heavy on the tomato for me this time but not horrible. I had flipped through a few smoothie recipes but didn't quite have the ingredients for anything that sounded amazing to me tonight. I guess throwing together my own ideas doesn't always work.

Today was the big day for me to pick up all of the See's fundraiser candy orders for the school choir. I did really good! Creamy chocolates are a downfall for me and in the past it would have been so easy for me to scarf down 6 pieces out of a candy box and then find reasons to hover around in the corner eating "just one more".  I did allow myself a sample piece at the store but didn't eat any of the candies that I brought home as extras for my family.

That doesn't mean I wasn't tempted for I surely was. It is just that every time I thought about not wanting to think about it, I heard the voice of reason say, 'Look at how far you've come these last weeks. Are you really ready to throw it all out the window?'

I did bring home a little bit of candy for myself but instead of buying a box to break into I bought 2 individually wrapped pieces. That way they will last me a while.  Am I making an argument that chocolate is a raw food? Nope. I simply know that a little bit of extra tasty here and there isn't going to hurt me.

Ok, 5am comes awfully early. I must go to bed.
Take care and God bless you and your day!

February 9, 2011

Week 3 - Day 4.....

 It has been a good day. Sleepy and tired but oh so good.
I really made a conscious effort today to fill up on my water.
I did a fruit smoothie for my lunch today from that place on the corner and I tried the wheat grass shot again. It was as I thought....the orange juice chaser is what had made me feel so punky because this time I did it without the juice and I was great.

My dear beach friend sent me a video link of a family that grows 100% of their food. It was inspiring and laughable all at the same time. I commend them and admire their will power but I don't know that I could ever do the same. I can barely keep my house plants alive.

I must admit I have been pondering the idea of growing wheat grass. I say pondering. It will take me a while to actually make up my mind but I find it all very interesting. The healthy benefits are too good to not ponder it.  And this is probably a ridiculous thought but if I can put whole veggies and fruits into a blender for a smoothie then why not wheat grass? Does it really need to be juice extracted?

For now, I must go to bed.
Blessings to you!

February 8, 2011

Week 3 - Day 2....

 Been a good day for me today.
I am trying to add something to my eating plan...actually I guess make it a plan instead of a haphazard thing. Along with my morning water and coffee I am making myself eat an apple before anything else crosses my lips. I am realizing that while I am a firm believer in apples being a part of every eating solution....I never seem to eat them. I buy them, I smile at seeing them setting pretty in a bowl on the counter, I encourage everyone else have one, but I never seem to eat them.  Silly silly me......

My husband went to the doctor today to see about some questions he had and ended up on medication for a ridiculously high blood pressure. I stayed calm when he told me he was 187/107 (no that is not a typo). He didn't need me to freak out.  Consequently he is more curious about what I am doing. Never in his life has he been one to like a variety of fruits and veggies but he is seeking my advice on what to do.

For me, I am really curious to see how my next check up goes. It has been at least a year since I was last in and I know my cholesterol was pretty high. I bet with virtually everything in my mouth being fresh produce that will really drop over the next couple of months.

For now I must get some sleep.
Blessings to you.

February 7, 2011

Week 3 - Day 1.....

I got up running today with a list in my head of what I wanted to accomplish. I had my water and then my coffee and I was off.  It wasn't until later in the day when I was feeling super sluggish (i.e slow, tired and hard to concentrate) that I realized it had been several hours since I had gotten any nourishment. Actually coffee doesn't count as nourishment so I was low on water and depleted of nutrition from the get-go. Not smart!

While my girls ate peanut butter cups in the car, I chewed on a honey stick. Then in the grocery store a deli worker had a sampler table set out of some really good cheese. I didn't ask for more than one sample but she loaded me up with a handful when I commented that the cheese was really tasty. I must have looked pathetic but I was grateful.

I concocted left overs for my family and then stared at the contents of my refrigerator trying to figure out what sustenance I was going to put in my body. The problem was nothing looked good.  The thought of food was yuck. Funny how that is happening. There was a time not so long ago that if I went 3 hours without shoving a morsel of carbohydrate in my mouth then I would feel hunger pains and think I might pass out. So dramatic. Now if I go without food I desire nothing at all.

I knew I needed something so I opted for a smoothie drink with my new blender.  I thought about wanting to try those smoothie recipes I bookmarked the other day but I kept hearing my beach friend in my head say, "Anything goes good in a blender or juicer. Don't worry about ingredients. No pressure. Just have fun playing."

Brace yourself for what I drank because I threw in much of the left over veggies from Saturday's birthday party. My drink consisted of a chard leaf, part of a cucumber, a few cherry tomatoes, a handful of carrots and a couple of small yellow bell peppers with some ice and water.

A month ago I would have balked at the idea of such a drink and told myself I was crazy through a fit of laughter. But truly, it was really good and I enjoyed every single drop of it.  It is so interesting how my perspective is changing without me fighting it. It used to be that when I talked with people who proclaimed to be vegetarian or vegan, I would feel so sad for them and not understand at all; as if they were in some sort of a self made prison. I couldn't imagine how produce could make someone feel content enough to turn down that cheeseburger and chocolate shake chaser.

Right now I am feeling such a sense of power and self awareness in being able to say, "No thank you" to different foods without having to wrestle with myself to make the words come out.

My husband kissed me tonight and told me that I am looking more firm. I questioned him because the scale is not moving right now. His reply was that the jiggly is becoming firm and he likes. Blush, blush, blush.....but I am so grateful for his support. He is not making faces at what I eat and he is even venturing to taste what I throw in the blender.

Thank you God!

 Be completely blessed!

February 6, 2011

Week 2 - Day 7.....

I did all of my normal stuff today with eating....stuff that I have been eating for the last couple of weeks. But I also ate so azuki bean and rice chips with my humus today ....actually a few handfuls because I liked the different crunch as opposed to my carrots sticks. (ugh! that means I ate out of emotion instead of nutritional desire)
I feel different today. My energy is fine and my system feels fine. I am not positive what the difference is. I think that this weekend maybe even though I have been eating all produce and such, I have been eating a bit too much dehydrated type fruit instead of fresh.

I pulled up a bunch of smoothie recipes on the web this morning and want to try them out tomorrow.  I suddenly remembered last night that one of the things I packed and brought from my dad's house is a food processor. I never even unpacked it when I came home and shoved it in a cabinet. I want to get that out tomorrow and start playing with it.

 I am not bored with my food or anything.  I just feel like playing around a bit. It is the preparation thing that is getting to me I think. I don't like to cook all the time but still....once or twice a week I love to create something.

Pluses today.....2 people told me I am looking different and wanted to know what I was doing. Also, I wore a pair of shoes today that I haven't been able to wear for a good 6 months because my feet were always swollen.

Okay, another glass of water and I am off to bed.
 Blessings to you!

February 5, 2011

Week 2 - Day 6......

 So sleepy this evening but it has been a very good day.
My Nana's party went very well. She was surprised and happy. Conversations, relationships and memory making were a constant during the 3 hours of party. And the food part of it went well too. I served mostly healthy items. There was a veggie tray and a fruit tray, a sandwich platter and crock pot of meatballs. I also did plates with cheese and crackers, and two bowls of azuki bean chips and brown rice chips.

I did really well at only eating the veggies and fruit. I did make a conscious decision to eat a small slice of the carrot cake. I didn't finish it though. It tasted okay and everyone raved about it but I was unsatisfied.

Later after everyone left, I put an apple, mango and chard leaf in my blender for an easy "dinner".
I am grateful the day went well and I feel proud of myself for not camping out and grazing at the table like I would have done in the past.

 Be blessed!

February 4, 2011

Week 2 - Day 5.....

I was planning out my day today and thinking about me being on day 12 of this new eating lifestyle. It dawned on me that while it was good for me to write out a food list on a recent post, that maybe I should write out a step by step of what goes in my mouth for 24hrs.  Maybe it can help someone else as well as help me when I look back on things. So here is today. I know it is boring but.....

-Started the day at 5:30am (not my preferred choice. It is part of being Mom.)  Sipped away a 16 oz. glass of water while getting everyone ready for their different things.

-7:30am Now that my glass of water is empty I can have a cup of coffee. I don't allow myself to put anything else into my body until I have kick started it with water.

-8:30am was time to try my new blender. I did a whole apple (minus the core) with 3 oz. Activia yogurt and 2 oz. orange juice. Then worked on a second 16oz. of water.

-12:30pm found me very hungry. I tried to eat my left over salad from dinner last night but I can say without doubt that wilted salad with day old dressing is too gross to make myself eat. So I cut up some broccoli, 3 baby bell peppers and 1/2 a cucumber. For dessert I munched a handful of raw almonds. Also had another 16 oz. of water.
*note to self...I have never ever liked nuts in my life but WOW! Raw almonds are really good. I wonder if my taste buds are changing that much already. I set some in water to sprout and I am anxious to see how they are later.

-4:30pm-ish I had a string cheese while making dinner. We had company over so I made a couple of chicken pot pies and a huge salad with all kinds of fixings. I used butter lettuce and dressed it up with carrots and cucumbers. Then I put out serving bowls of avocado, tomato, bell pepper, edemame and cranberries. 

-6:30pm We officially had dinner. I wasn't attracted to the pot pies. Well okay, they did look appealing but I didn't feel the least bit like filling my belly with them. The veggies and my glass of water called to me and I filled up happily.
*note: Our guests did not scoff at the idea of me only eating veggies. I remember when I used to diet and it was torture to have company over and not be able to eat the same foods. All of the emotional pressure....and I put it on all by myself. Tonight was so different though; so very easy.

-11:45pm Earlier in the evening while everyone else over filled on Tillamook ice cream, I chewed a couple of honey sticks. Now I am getting ready for bed with a handful of almonds and no regrets.

I am looking over my day and thinking I really didn't eat a ton of food and I feel quite happy. I wonder if there is a guideline of how much I am supposed to consume. I don't mean like a list of things to check off but more like things I should make sure to eat first in the day. For now I still think that might be over thinking it for me. Ultimately, I think I should just listen to my stomach and it says "full" so I am not going to worry about it.

It has been a good day.
Tomorrow is my Nana's 85th birthday and we are surprising her with a party here. I should get to bed so that I can enjoy getting ready for the fun.

February 3, 2011

Week 2 - Day 4.....

It is 10:30pm and I just downed another glass of cool water. Water, water, water.....how I love my water. I am spoiled with my water.
One of the things we moved up here from my dad's home was a water cooler with both a cool tab and an insta-hot spout. I love it!  I know it is a very silly thing for me to think but somehow I mentally think of my water as more special because it comes from a fancy dispenser in my kitchen that belonged to my dad.

There are all sorts of studies that say we are supposed to have our water cleaned in one way or another and it seems every company has their own cutting edge technology that can't compare. But for me, I am ever so happy with my cooler. The vendor that dispenses my water for pennies says that it has undergone a triple osmosis filtration cleaning. Any ponderings I had in my head that it was secretly tapped into a garden hose behind the store can to an end night before last when the machine ran out of water while filling my 5 gallon jug. It shut off and gave me the rest of my calculated money back.

 Anyway, I tried something new today by recommendation of my dear beach friend. She said, "throw 2 chard leaves in a blender with a mango and you have instant healthy yummy pudding."  I did try it and I loved it. Unfortunately my blender, some 30 years old, decided to give up while doing the job but it was still good. Hubby met me after work at the store and let me pick out a new one. I started looking at juicers and then got overwhelmed at what to do with one. In due time.

Hmmm.....what concoction shall I invent for my taste buds tomorrow with my new blender?

 Things I noticed today.....my facial skin is starting to become more firm and balanced instead of oily and dry. Also my gums are more pink instead of red.  It is all so interesting to me.

Blessings to you!