Monday, June 9, 2014

Up early in the Summer

I'm up early this morning, I assume this is a side effect of the Whole30 program. They did not say 'you wake earlier in the morning' they stated 'you will fall asleep faster, sleep deeper and easier during the night, and awake in the morning refreshed and ready to go'. (I'm paraphrasing.)

Actually, something else happening as a result of the program is mental clarity. I has it. And right now it's not a blessing. I kinda liked living in my fog I think. I'm worrying about one of my jobs. But that's none of this blogs business.

What I wanted to get down was... shit now I forgot what I wanted to write... OHHHHHH

What I wanted to write is about deleting facebook. Damon laughed yesterday as I received several text messages asking if I had left FB. I did. June 7th. I'm a really good Mom. I love my kids with a healthy mix of emotional connection and a natural desire to simply keep them alive. But Piper is coming to this weird age here at 9. She's always been smart and a little too independent, but always very maternal and kind to others and loving and affectionate with me and her father. Admittedly, me more. It's always been that way. But the child has NEVER been easy. NOW, we are dealing with our kind, loving and 'so affectionate you think she's a kitten' baby in one moment and in the next moment we are dealing with a sassy, smart mouth, venom spewing preteen. It's confusing. But I'm digressing a little... again.

I work from home, just about full time really. It's not as easy and glamorous as people might thing. It's a huge balance of time and a lot of discipline. It's hard. But sometimes when I have a lull at my computer I would click FB to see what's going on with everyone... and before I knew it I had 30 minutes of my day zapped away. It wasn't ALWAYS like that... sometimes it would be an HOUR!

I'd be bored nursing Rosie, so I'd reach for my phone and scroll FB....
I'd be waiting somewhere for something.... reach for my phone scroll FB....
Lull in the conversation??? Reach for FB.... You get my picture.

I told myself it wasn't a big deal but when I took a focused, objective look at my day, I realized something. I was putting my children off. I would peek over to watch them play to make sure they were preoccupied instead of joining in. They would approach and request me to brush a doll's hair or read to them... or FIX THEIR LUNCH... and I'd say "just a minute, I'm almost caught up". So I had to stop. Piper is watching me. She mimics everything I do. I do not want this to be one of those things.

Plus, Facebook's 'listening' feature is creepy to the max!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Whole30 day 6: Still hating, holding strong.

We've finally found our groove a little. There is a trick to this and it's not to impromptu cook as meals approach. We have started grilling several chicken breast at a time for easy cut and serves for curry and salads etc... The trick is to take a few hours and prep and chop and precook. Because by the end of this first week, I'm TIRED of cooking! Also, THIS IS EXPENSIVE! I've spent a total of about $550 on food in two weeks. I first started at HEB after cleaning out my pantry I spent $260 for a weeks worth of food that didn't last a week, I had to make an emergency run to BC Market Basket (expensive as hell) for a total of $75 and I meal planned for this coming week and spent $210 at HEB today! I. Could. Die. That is more than HALF our monthly budget for food AND eating out! I. COULD. DIE.

So this whole week Damon and I have done nothing but fight. Two reasons: 1. he's a douche sometimes... ok, make that THREE reasons... 2. We are both detoxing off food our body is still screaming for and 3. we don't see eye to eye on having the children do this program.

As the title of my blog indicates, I'm a GREAT starter and a horrible finisher. I really need Damon on board to help me see it through and I just have not got the commitment from him I'd like to see. He just wants a GD Diet Dr. Pepper. I think we finally hashed it out by deciding we can not expect our kids to do this as strictly as we are. Birthday parties, special occasions etc.. it's just not something I can control with them all the time. They are too young and impulsive to make adult decisions like we can during this 30 days. If I'm not with them and they are offered a choice between a chicken breast or a piece of cake... well, I've been 9 before and I promise I know which one I would chose.

We are not, however, giving up on this program. At home we will see it through and it seemed to make Damon happy to know that the kids could have a piece of birthday cake at Stella's 6th birthday party. See, the rules of the program state: you cheat, you start over from day 1. I can not and will not hold my children to that. It's cruel to them.

I still feel yucky and while grocery shopping I nearly made a spectacle of myself when I passed a bag of Kettle jalapeno chips in the goodie isle (I was getting a jar of cashews) If you know me, you know I'm a chip girl. I can DEVOUR a bag of chips as a meal and not blink an eye. I love salty, spicy chips. We have a relationship. As I passed the chips my mouth literally started watering, my neck got hot and prickly and my brain went to a dark place. A place where it was just me and that bag of chips on my couch watching a few episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer (one of my favorite decadent delights) I could almost taste them.

I scoffed at the book reading that within the first few weeks many people reported having food dreams about things they missed and their bodies were craving. Pancakes. I dreamed about pancakes. Hot silver dollar pancakes with warm butter and syrup.... So yeah, not a joke. It happened. I woke up feeling like I had a sex dream about an old boyfriend... it made me feel dirty and guilty! Like I had eaten the pancakes.

This is hard. It is very very hard. I want so bad to fix the way we eat that I'm not giving up on it. I won't let Damon give up either, though I think he secretly is hoping I do my usual and quit at midpoint. But I think that's why I'm keeping the blog. I seem to do better when I write honestly about it.

I'm getting on my own nerves a little less today. I even found myself smiling at people as I shopped today. It was nice to feel a little human again.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Whole30 day 2: I still hate you... all of you

Yeah, I still hate everyone.

My kids went next door for 15 minutes and cheated. They 'conveniently' didn't tell the nanny next door they couldn't have a pack of gummies.

I'm still on day two and grumpy as hell. I have to disclaimer all my sentences with "I'm sorry I'm being so bitchy I'm just feeling bitchy... but" I'm still in a fog.

Around 4 - 6 p.m. are the WORST part of the day. My body SCREAMS for sweets or cereal or chocolate... or GiGi's cupcakes.

I cooked red curry chicken and mushroom tonight and it was soooo good! It was close to comfort food! I ate two bowls.

I made chicken guacamole salad for lunch over lettuce and tomato for the kids for lunch and there is none left, they LOVED it! But they are definitely 'feeling it' today.
Piper was in lala land all day today and so was Stella. I feel bad for them, but it will be worth it.

Damon is still trying to find a way to cheat and eat a desert. I may end up strapping him up to a tree and leaving him there for ants if he's not careful! My mood does not permit 'Damonisms'.

Here are a few pictures of some things I've cooked so far:

Asian Beef and Brocoli:

It was eh. Damon would say "It'll make a turd" food. Quite the poet my husband.

Breakfast Mash:

Everyone liked the apples in this and that's the nicest thing they said about it. It's a nay.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Whole30: Day 1 (I HATE EVERYONE)

Not everyone wants to hear about my Whole30 adventure and that's fine so I decided to keep it off of Facebook. I don't judge others with their food diets and circuit workout post, I like seeing my friends go about their day to day and thrive in their element. It's why I enjoy Facebook. But I just didn't want to be 'that guy'. So it's day 1 (for me), we actually started last night. I cooked Asian beef and broccoli over raw spinach. It was good. It wasn't comfort food, that's for sure. All business. There was enough for dinner for all of us last night and lunch for us all today. So that makes it better. I can't have sweetener so I thought there would be no reason do fool with coffee today. It is worth noting here that I am on the second day of my cycle and a 2-3 cup a day girl. By 10 a.m. I had a splitting pounding headache. I'm grumpy and groggy. It's the kids last day of school and I'm in hell. I'm craving coffee with sugar and half and half. I feel like I'm walking in a fog and even my thoughts are jumbled. My house is UP SIDE DOWN. I can't even get up off the couch to do much of anything. I broke at 2 and made a pot of coffee. I opened a can of coconut milk to put in my coffee but no sweetener. My headache is fading a bit and I'm half way through cup 1. I can't even finish this posting. I hate hearing myself type. I feel like shit. C

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Ain't Nothing like the Real Thing!

I'm making my Maw Maw Rose's spaghetti today. I get called for this recipe a lot by siblings, cousins who have lost the recipe somewhere in the house, and friends who love it.

I love making it, the smell reminds me of family dinners at my grandmother's house, when my Mom and Aunts would have to holler for us 10 times to stop playing with our cousins and come eat. As we grew up, we didn't have to be called - we just gathered around and visited with each other while smelling the sweet aroma. I'm not sure which of those are my favorite memories. But I know that I'll cherish both with all my heart and I hope my family is as close as my Grandmother kept hers.

Maw Maw Rose's Italian Spaghetti

1 12oz can tomato paste
1 14.5oz can tomatoes
1 clove garlic
1 1/2 tomato paste cans water (18oz)
1/4 t oregano
1/2 t basil
1/4 C sugar
1 small pork roast or ribs

Brown pork in heavy pot. Add tomato paste and fry a little. Add tomatoes and rest of ingredients.

1 lb ground meat (beef, pork, turkey....)
1 small onion finely chopped
bread crumbs soaked in a little milk
salt and pepper to taste
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray lightly with cooking spray.

Combine ingredients in a large bowl with hands. Smoosh it REAL good! You'll have to eyeball the ingredients - I just know how from watching Maw Maw. But you make it the same way you make a meat loaf.

Make as many balls in whatever size you desire.

Put the balls on the lined pan and brown them in the oven. I estimate the time from 15-20 minutes, but you'll just need to stay close by and watch them. Browning them helps them not fall to pieces while cooking fully in the sauce.

After they are good and brown, get them out and drop the meatballs in the sauce gently. Cook on lowest setting for 4 or 5 hours siring gently occasionally.

Serves 7 people per 1lb of spaghetti noodles.

A few Carrie alterations:

In the Spring and Summer, I enjoy adding fresh chopped basil from my garden directly before serving.

Never use pre made parmesan cheese in this, buy the fresh block in the specialty cheese section and grate it yourself. Do this, because you love yourself.

I always double the recipe and freeze whatever sauce is left over for a quick lunch or dinner.

Serve with a nice salad and home made dressing and a big crusty loaf of bread.

I once made this with tomatoes fresh from my own garden. It was an all day event. It was a ton of work. I sweat, I cried, I laughed... but it was the best spaghetti sauce I've ever made. Just saying.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Planting Day!

Today was my first day to plant - it was difficult considering I was exhausted from having my my my my my boogie shoes on all night last night. Courtesy of two of my favorite gay guys Keith and Brian. It was a lovely night, where the beer flowed like wine, where old friends were cherished, where I got really slogged. Don't worry, Damon got more slogged than me because he wasn't drinking water in between drinks. No hangover for me, but Damon has been throwing up all day. Which is as it should be since Damon 'effing' McDaniels came out to play. I always say a little prayer that God makes him throw up all day when his alter ego comes out. One day I'll blog about Damon's warlock persona. Charlie Sheen has nothing on Damon 'effing' McDaniels. But that's another day.

I was too tired to take pictures today, so I'm blogging first while it's fresh in my mind and adding pictures later.

First I got my gloves and spade and mixed my castings with my potting soil. I used my mop bucket so I could get the mixture right. I did 1/3 castings and 2/3 potting soil.

Next, I set my plants where I wanted them. I'm making 'rows' as I go this year since I'm not completely certain how I want to do the set up this year. I want to grow a lot more things this time around and I'm trying to find the best way to utilize my space.

My cousin/brother in law Michael gave me some organic chicken manure pellets to try in my planting this year. It's his first year to try it as well so I'm doing as he is doing and only using it on half the vegetables I'm plating.

My first row is a single row that I did not use today.

My second row is a double row that I am using for my tomatoes. I used the chicken pellets on the tomato plants on the left side. Starting from the fence the first two plants are 'Gulf States' tomatoes. They are a local breed that my dad told me my grandfather used to love, so we are trying them. Second are 'Better Bush' and Third are 'Big Bush'. I staggered them, so I have room for one more bush breed tomato plant.

I put my 'Burpless Cucumbers' in the ground as well today. I put them in a new place this year. They are going to be found on the far right back corner of the garden. I feel I can utilize this sandy part of the plot for the cucumbers.

Since they are still babies I have them caged and wrapped in plastic. This is to protect them from the wind until better cages can be built. When they are bigger and stronger and the weather is a little more consistent I will remove the plastic, but not the cages.

Tonight since I'm a bit restless, I also used the nursery cups the tomato and cucumber plants came in and started my pumpkin seeds. I'm trying out the 'Big Max' breed. I don't have a lot of room for mounds in the yard, but I would like to try to make 5 or 6 prize pumpkins.

In addition I have my green beans, the "Tendergreen Improved (Bush)' breed, soaking in water over night as recommended. Stella and I will be planting those, as well as some basil into the garden tomorrow. I'm experimenting with planting some basil in with my bush tomatoes this year. I don't know how well it will do - but can't you just imagine the smell. It makes me smile just thinking of it! :)

Tomorrow will be a busy day as well. I have to start preparing the soil in my butterfly garden area. I'm still trying to track down some milk weed, if anyone knows where I can find some that information will be appreciated.

Keep watching for added pictures tomorrow!