Friday, September 30, 2016

That Escalated Quickly

I started out well with a good breakfast. Then when I got to work, the chips I had bought the day before were calling me into the kitchen. I know I should have thrown them away (spoiler alert - I still have not thrown them away), but I liked them and want to believe I can eat them appropriately and  in moderation. Anyway, I had a few. Then my husband called and needed me to take the small fry to daycare after preschool. That means I had to use my lunch hour and it allowed me to pass all those fast food places I am trying to avoid. The Lean Cuisine at the office was not sounding good with all those options in front of me. I ended up talking myself into stopping at a fish place I hadn't had in forever - there was a $5 lunch special - fish, shrimp, hush puppies, fries, soda and a cookie. To my credit, I ordered water instead of the soda and didn't eat the hush puppies (truth be told I don't like hush puppies so that was not some virtuous sacrifice on my part). After I ate, I looked up the calories - 790 (not including the cookie because it wasn't listed on the nutrition guide - guessing maybe 200).  So lunch was not good, but not a complete travesty. However, I didn't feel great about myself for splurging. So what did I do later that afternoon? Back into the chips, plus a couple pieces of candy. When I got home we just had a few minutes to eat before heading to the homecoming parade. I ate a turkey sausage in a corn tortilla (150ish calories) and I was fine. At the homecoming parade, the small fry made out like a candy bandit - doesn't hurt to be ridiculously cute :)  I know you know where this is going. I sorted out the candy when we came home, let her have a couple pieces and then after she went to bed I sampled several pieces of the "good stuff" chocolatey, caramely things. Then I thought too much sweet and I didn't eat much for dinner, so I made a cheese quesadilla - sure didn't measure that cheese. At this point, calories were the last thing on my mind.

And there is how it happens. Suddenly, looking back on the day I realize I am that "before" person I have read in all those weight loss stories, who eats a mountain of unhealthy food in the course of one day. I always wondered how that is possible...and now I know. Ugh!

So what do I do next...pick myself up and start fresh today, right? I am working on it. Breakfast ended up being a sandwich I picked up because we were out of bread, eggs, and milk at home so I was out of my breakfast routine. The sandwich was about 400 calories so I am still okay. For lunch, I am planning on a Lean Cuisine, an apple and a walk. I have a quick healthy plan for dinner so we can get to the football game. We took about half the candy to my husband's work this morning. However, the rest of it still lurks at the house and that unnerves me a bit. Like I said most of today is still a "plan" - not yet accomplished. By laying it all out here I am hopeful I will have a better report tomorrow.

**I apologize for my run-on thoughts today. I just wanted to get it out there so I can analyze and recalibrate.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Dinner and a Walk

I got the latest issue of Cooking Light a week or so ago. I immediately started planning to try the One Pot Jambalaya. I think I was attracted to it right away because of the awesome ladies in my group who either live in Louisiana currently or have spent significant portions of there life there. I wanted a little taste of their cuisine. Admittedly, this recipe is not completely authentic I hope it is a fair representation.

The smell of peppers and onions sauteing with the andouille sausage got things off to a great start. "I don't know what it is, but it smells delicious" was called from the other room by a hungry husband.

The recipe was super simple and quick. My biggest concern was the rice. The recipe calls for packages of pre-cooked rice (of which I am not a fan). So the night before I made a batch of rice in my steamer. I tried to estimate how much rice is in the packages and used that much of my rice. I think in the future this would be a great use for leftover rice (or maybe I should make a bit extra when we are having rice another night). In my opinion, there should have been more liquid used for cooking. I ended up using almost all the juice from the tomatoes. In the future (and there will be a future because SPOILER ALERT my husband loved it), I would add some chicken broth. I used Slap Ya Mama seasoning. When I read the recipe I didn't notice it called for a "salt free" seasoning, so I was glad when one of my ladies warned me of the salt content. In the end, it was still a bit salty, but that I can fix that next time. We are happy to have another nice cool weather dish in the dinner rotation :)
After dinner, my husband offered to ride herd on the small fry so I could take a walk  Millie was super excited to go with me. She didn't know I was actually "using" her to speed up my pace a little. 
She did a good job keeping me moving.

Headed to the home stretch I was treated to a pretty sunset...bonus!
When I got home the small fry was bathed in her jammies. It was so nice to have some snuggle time with her while looking at my giant encyclopedia of mammals.  Thank you, husband :)

Overall, I was happy with my meals for the day (calories totally on point). However, when I ran to Walmart these chips jumped in my cart (I categorically deny any assistance from me). I am the poster child of the Frito-Lay marketing department. Make a new flavor of chips and I will have to try it. The past several I have tried have been complete fails. However, this one was quite yummy. I felt the urge to strap it on my face like a horse's feed bag. Truth is I ate more than a serving (more like 2-3 servings over the course of the afternoon). Later, I read some online reviews and discovered I may be in the minority. So, the silver lining is the temptation should be gone soon since they won't be making more.  
Sadly, as often happens, after my salty indulgence I wanted sweet. There was available candy and I ate that too - ugh! Overall, my calories for the day were much better than they have been recently (between 1800-2000). However, this can't be happening every other day if I want to be successful.

The important thing is even though I didn't do everything right, I didn't throw in the towel. Today I will do better.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

No Ceremony Here

I have decided I really want to get back to blogging and I think I have found a little trick that might make it a bit more manageable. One of the biggest issues I have now that we are fostering is time. I take most of my blog pictures with my phone and then had to go through the whole process of transferring them to my computer and then uploading them to my blog. It was cumbersome and time consuming. So while driving today it hit me - can't I just upload the pics for a post directly from my phone? Then all I have to do is hop on my PC to write the actual text of the blog. I am never going to be decent and typing on my phone so I still have to do a combo. Why didn't I think of this sooner?

So here I am back again. I am NOT making any grandiose plans or declarations. I am just picking up where I am in the moment and we will go from there. I am hopeful some of my old followers are still out there and we can reconnect.

A quick foster care update. We have had a 4 year old girl since May. We also had her brother with us, but  he returned home about a month ago (he was 14 months old when he left). It was a huge surprise to us when the courts sent him back home - never dreamed they would be separated. It was super hard to see him go, but we have settled into a good routine. I won't deny it is much simpler with one, especially when the second was quite needy. We have so many fun memories with him - a ton of pictures and videos. One of my favorite memories is when he learned to walk. Those first precious weeks of Frankenstein steps and the sheer joy on his face as he found a new freedom. We don't know for sure how much longer we will have Minnie - at least three more months and then we will see. No doubt she will tear my heart out and take it with her. I try not to think about it too much. I am focused on keeping her happy and healthy until then - enjoying the adventure that is life with a sweet, funny, smart, adorable, rambunctious 4 year old.

Update on the "weight loss" or in my case "weight gain". I am not at an all time high, but I have gained back all that I had lost (and a few extra) since I started the blog. My husband did too :(  He got himself together back in July and has lost about 40 pounds - I swear it drops off him. To be fair he is consistent and does the work.

Last weekend we celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary. It was so good to have a day alone to really reconnect with each other. We spent some time at the art museum. It was fun to see what caught each others' attention (good or bad). Contemporary art...I just don't get it. We had lunch at a taco joint. It was an ideal meal for tacos and love variety. All the tacos were a la carte so you could mix and match. We tasted almost all of them. My favorite was a shrimp taco with mango salsa and a hops aioli. I almost didn't order it cause I am not a mango or beer fan. Glad the waitress recommended it. The only one I didn't like was the portabello mushroom and goat cheese taco. I have finally accepted that I just don't like goat cheese. As much as I want to every time I get it in something, I don't enjoy the dish. I loved this meal too for its color and variety of fresh ingredients. We didn't leave with overloaded tummies and a funky greasy after taste. We will definitely go back.

I am technically on Day 3 of my "recommittment." All that I am asking of myself is for 10 days is to track my food (good or bad) and exercise 20 minutes a day. So far I am doing okay. The biggest reason I am doing the 10 days is to break my cycle of sloth and stuffing my face. Seriously it was ridiculous. Once I get through the 10 days I will re-evaluate and decide how to proceed.

This morning I made some soup from the leftover chicken/sauce from our Salsa Verde Chicken Tostadas (or toast-a-tatos as they are pronounced in our house now.) The chicken is cooked in the crockpot with a jar of salsa verde. I saved all the juice and little bits of shredded chicken for the base. I added some chicken broth, zucchini, onions and jalapeno. I grilled up a couple of corn tortillas and cut them into strips. I will toss them in the bowl after I heat up the soup. I love meals with leftovers that can be reinvented into another meal. Soups are a pretty ideal way to do that. And now that the weather is cooling off let the soup adventures begin.
Lunch update:  It isn't the most colorful meal, but it was tasty. It was a bit saltier than I would like - I didn't check if the broth was reduced sodium, plus the salt of the canned salsa verde was a bit more than I like. I do wish I had remembered some fresh cilantro to sprinkle on top.

There is so much more that I want to say, but if I try to say it all I will never post anything. There may be a thing or two I revisit and share from my time away, but for now I am letting this be my start back.

I hope all is well in your world :)