Archives for: February 2005
Again, we had a fantastic day here in the Pacific NW. These wonderful blue skies and warm temperatures are not the norm for us. They could very easily be the beginning of a major drought...but, today, it just plain felt nice.
This afternoon we went to Greece (well, mentally anyway). For one of our appetizers, we had saganaki. It’s made with a cheese called kefalotiri (can be made from either goat or sheep’s milk) that's been dredged in spelt flour (my O’s cannot have wheat) and then fried in olive oil. It’s served hot with fresh lemon slices to squeeze over it. We also had olive oil mixed with lemon juice and oregano to dip our warm spelt flat bread in.
Why did we need the sagnaki? Because it cooks a lot faster than the grilling oregano/lemon/olive oiled chicken with assorted veggie skewers (for the O’s) and my seasoned lamb skewers for my gyro was cooking and I wanted something to eat.
With the grilled items we also had: tossed salad made with romaine, kalamata olives (these were on the side because the O’s shouldn't have 'em), feta cheese, tomato, and paper thin slices of red onion, a generous handful of oregano, and more lemon-olive oil. I had some cucumber slices in there too, but that was on the side ‘cause it was another “no” for the O’s.
Spanakopita was the side dish. Spanakopita (BTD version) is made with spelt phyllo/filo dough that’s been filled with spinach, onions, dill, feta, eggs, sea salt and a bit of olive oil. If a bit of garlic finds it way in there, it’s not the end of the world. Everything here was O acceptable as well.
The main attraction (as far as I was concerned) was the lamb. Once it was done cooking, it went onto warm spelt flat bread (think pita) where it was topped with some of the tossed salad and a hefty slathering of tzatziki. This was unusual for me as I usually just drink the stuff rather than using it for a sauce (but, it is supposed to be a dip, not a drink. Drinking it is a Chanur thing I think...). BTD style tzatziki is peeled & seeded cucumbers that are pressed and drained and then get chopped up and put in a blender with chopped garlic, sea salt, yogurt, a bit of red wine, and some olive oil...sometimes I also add a bit of cumin for the heck of it. When I drink it, I don't wait to press and drain the cucumbers which makes the consistency much thinner.
All this food can make a person thirsty - so we just had to have some retsina. If you have read my springtime vittles blog, you know that I mentioned that I usually prefer temporarily switching from mainly red wines to whites. The retsina we had was a white Greek (duh) wine.
Restina is a wine that is purposely flavored with a touch of pine resin so that it resembles what wines may have tasted like centuries ago when the bottles were resinated with pine to keep the wine from spoiling. I have also heard that it was actually an accident. A long time ago, wines were sealed in their jugs and sealed with pine. The pine would seep into the wine during shipping. Either way, the result was wine mixed with pine. Some say it’s an acquired taste, but we have all liked it from the very first sip. It, and ouzo, are the two national drinks of Greece.
Next, it was time for dessert: Galaktoboureko. No, I’m not drunk off the retsina; it’s a real dessert. It’s pretty much phyllo sheets (don’t forget to brush it with clarified butter) that are filled with lemon flavored custard. This meant I had the entire batch to myself (a pity that) since the O’s don’t get custards because of the dairy involvement. There was an O dessert available - but they opted out.
In case you are wondering what the A was eating during all this, he wasn’t. He wasn’t with us at the time.
One more thing before I close this blog: A blood type A reader has suggested sardines as a snack idea for those of you out there still needing snack ideas. I think that it is an excellent idea and wanted to both pass the idea along and thank her for the suggestion.
I hope your weekend is going well for you!
Tonight after work, I had a wonderful chair massage at Calhoun Square. The therapist has the biggest warmest healing hands. Very seldom do I almost fall alseep or at least go into deeper brain waves with other CMTs but this guy is GOOD. I am amazed at how all the "healing" work I do at the pharmacy creates so much pain in my body that it has to be reversed or at least controlled by another member of the healing arts. If only the ergonomics were a little healthier there. Someday, every little thing we consider a luxury will be standard in the workplace because employers will realize how much more productive and happy employees are when they are healthy and in balance. Till then, bring on the massage therapists and chiropractors to get me through the week.
I followed this with a great meal at Figlio's. Saffron'd tomato and white bean soup followed by Ahi Tuna Filet Mignon with a bed of their garlicky greens. I also drank their cute little martini trio: Orange Crush, Pineapple Upside-Down Cake, and Cosmo. Almost ate Indian food today as I had a huge craving for it, but ended up at Figlio's instead. It was the word "saffron" that drew me in.....
Lately, I have been cooking a little more for myself, at least cooking breakfast. Eggs, eggs, eggs. Hard-boiled, over-hard, and whatever other way I see fit. My body truly does well on them.
Deepak Chopra and Caroline Myss both write about the phenomenon of synchronicity. It's amazing how strange these things can be. On a personal level, and on a universal level. How they combine. Dear God, it's both frightening and beautiful. It's frighteningly beautiful. And if that's not God, what is?
And within this synchronicity, there is this significant person from my past life that has crossed my mind here and there within the last two weeks. Why? I have no clue! The last time we communicated, we ended our correspondance on a very bad note. Two years ago, as the disputes and harsh words came to full fruition, I came to peace that we are two people who are better off out of each other's lives. Peaceful co-existence from afar. Perhaps that's no way to fully heal from the hate, but it's survival on the most primal level.
This boy was my first kiss and as embarrassing as it is to say, my first love, or at least my first deep infatuation through middle school and part of high school. If friends and family had known the extent of the drama unraveling on our subdivision block, all the destructive things I kept enduring by continuing to make contact in innocent hopes that love would conquer the hate, they would have called for some serious interventions between us. In this regard, I grew up way too fast.
Well, after finally checking my comments from this blog, I found out from someone still apparently close to him that his father suddenly passed away within the last two weeks. My heart goes out to him and his family as do my prayers. I'm not sure if it's right to contact him. What I do know is that I learned to really love going to Mass from his dad. He led our youth choir, a group that we never formed before he came into our congregation. While my motives for joining the choir were probably not the most sincere as I always had a big crush on his son, I really loved the music we sang.
So there is my witness to synchronicity; when you need the world, the world reaches out and thinks of you and hopes you are doing all right. If I never see or speak to this person again, I really wish him peace and love throughout his life. Life is way too short to hold grudges, contain anger, and bottle hate.
I'm off to one of the small towns again this weekend for work. I was begged into it. But I don't really mind. Perhaps I could manage on of these little pharmacies... food for thought.
On another note, Tori Amos' new album, The Beekeeper, is amazing. Truly unlike anything she's ever produced before, very personal, very dark, and at times very funny yet in a reality-sobering way. I have to say I really need to listen to this at this time of my life.
What a life. As I get busier with work, kids and volunteering, I have great difficulties in keeping up with making decent meals. My old standby of ground beef, tomatoes, peppers, onions and spinach is good for mid-week when I have exactly one hour to make supper, review homework and get the kids out to activites. (My husband fixes his own A meal)...
I travelled for 3 days last week (business and pleasure). My mother is a spry 78 year O who does not take any medications except for the occasional rum and coke. We went out for a great dinner at a lovely restaurant, I had steak and green beens and my mother also had a steak but with spinich. I had a wonderful glass of Shirax red wine and of course my mother had her cocktail of choice. It was a wonderful relaxing dinner without having to referee kids or worrying about needing to get home to do some tasks.
I then spent 2 days training a client on design software for the apparel industry. She makes the most incredible evening and bridal wear.
Because of my travels, I ended up fighting a very nasty flu bug that is going around here. It starts with a sick stomach, body aches, chills and then throwing up. I had my nasty turn on Monday night, but with doses of Vit C, beef and tomatoes all seems to be well now.
Music: Orbital - Halcyon and on and on (very cool...)
Mood: Nag Champa
Hello blog readers. Welcome to another addition of, 'Oh my gawd... Can he get any weirder?'
I decided a couple of weeks ago, after a liver flush, that I would do another tonight. Yesterday being the Full Moon, and from now untill the New, being the Waning. According to Ayurvedic tradition, this is the optimal time to do the ol' liver flush. I have done several in the past, but never payed much attention to co-factors such as that... We'll see how it affects the process.
Please forgive my horrendous writing and spelling. As if it weren't bad enough already, the crazy prep work I've been doing for the flush has got me feeling like I've just popped a couple of tabs of bad acid... Heh heh. Lightheaded, skewed vision, not quite sure where I am... Ok.. I'm exaggerating...
I've drank a full two gallons organic unfiltered apple juice (Santa Cruz) over the last 6 days to soften the intrahepatic "stones" with the malic acid in the juice. The fermentation also helps to widen the bile ducts in order to ease thier passage. I've been using a product called Colosan as well. It's a blend of magnesium oxides similar to the Homozon product I've blogged about before. You mix it with water, drink it down, and then chase it with lemon/lime juice, or apple cider vinegar. The acid "activates" the magnesium, thereby releasing the nacent oxygen, wich in turn, scavenges your colon and intestines for waste matter to be dissolved. I reccomend both products. Good stuff. Nothin' like a squeaky clean colon.
On top of that, I chose to fast today, drinking only more of the apple juice, and, a wicked concoction I whipped up using thge ol' Green Star Juicer. My baby. Anyway... I juiced 3 beets w/greens, a big bunch of parsley, a small handful of cilantro, and bunch of ginger root. Made about 40oz. Drank it all within 4 hours. I don't particularily reccomend this... Hellafide detox action... That, mixed with the Colosan, and all the apple juice, has got me runnin' to the bathroom like a mad man. Good thing I have the day off... Just wish I had tomorrow off as well. The day after a flush can see you in the Loo all day too.
I hace just done a colema, using a colema board that I purchased on line... It's like a "do it yourself" colonic. Only a hell of a lot cheaper. Colon hydrotherapy. Amazing stuff. They do it at Dr. D's clinic. Research it if you haven't already. Cheapest place to get 'em being e bay. Doing the colema/colonic the day of the flush ensures the unimpeded travel of the "stones" from the liver/gallbladder, to the toilet. Ha ha. It's a good idea to do another colema/colonic within 3 days of the flush as well. The second one makes sure that ALL "stones" released from the flush are out of the colon. You don't want the 'lil bastards setting up shop and dissolving in the colon. They are chalk full of cholesterol, billirubin, all manner of toxins, and parasites on occasion.
Still eating vegan. Going very well. My new favorite restaurant is called the Hu-Hot Mongolian Grill in town here... There are a few more scattered across the nation as well. Fabulous place! Pick your noodles (they have all rice Pad Thai noodles!) Pick your meat (chicken, beef, duck, sausage, salmon, scallops, shrimp, etc.) I just skip this part. But there are plenty of choices for all blood types. I had swordfish there a while back... Sometimes you'll run into a pretty crazy item. Next, pick your vegetables. (Bok choy, cabbage, spinach, carrots, onions, mushrooms, zuchinni, baby corn, water chesnuts, snap peas, broccoli, pineapple, mung bean sprouts... Etc.) Finally you pick your sauce. They have a ton of premade sauces, or, you can make your own using things like sesame oil, garlic oil, soy sauce (not wheat free ginger broth, lemon juice, lime juice, chilli oil, etc. Any way... If you ever see one... Eat there!
I'll be starting the epsom salts at 6pm. The oil/juice mixture will be imbibed at 10pm. Off to bed. ONly to rise in the am and evacuate poisons harbored in my liver for YEARS! Boo ya'. Normally people use olive oil. This time, however, I have chosen to use pumpkin seed oil. Very antiparasitic... Mayhap this will have some beneficial effect? We'll see... I just hope it won't be deleterious...
Again... Bear with the grammar & spelling... Peace be with you all ~
My very first blog concerned the problem I then had of drinking coffee, and not really liking the idea of giving it up. It has been a rather long and fairly (at times) rocky road since then in terms of my coffee consumption. I’ve imbibed a LOT of the black liquid since I first put those words into cyberspace. Most of the time, I enjoyed it. Some of the time I had to have it, because of a caffeine withdrawal reaction. Some of the time I thought I had to have it because I had a headache, and over-the-counter remedies don’t work for me. Some of the time I could do happily without it. Sometimes habit kicked in, and although I drank it, I didn’t feel better in the end, after my cup was long empty. Somehow miraculously, after a period of having one coffee every day for a long while without apology – simply accepting that having it was important in the moment – one day I didn’t want a coffee, and in the days following, didn’t need one. I still had one every two or three days, though. Habit is hard to kick over entirely. By now, however, I wasn’t enjoying it nearly as much as I had in the beginning of this series. And I‘ve actually discovered a very acceptable and enjoyable substitute for coffee that is beneficial for B blood type, even for non-secretors such as myself! I’m almost hooked on my new beverage of choice. After drinking it, I feel very much better in a lot of small ways. Why wouldn’t I want to have it again and again? I don’t drink it every day, but every two or three days I must have it, my body demands it.
What is this magic elixir? It’s very simple, really, and hardly original. I heat a cup or so of goat milk and add a scant tablespoonful of blackstrap molasses to it. Stir and drink. Yummm. And good energy too. No bad reaction in my body. No high pulse to contend with. I highly recommend it for people trying to get away from caffeine in the intensity that coffee brings. Be careful, though. Soy milk and molasses are not necessarily beneficial for the other blood types in general, so do check with TYPEbase4 before mixing up a cup for yourself. As always, we are not a “one size fits all” group.
My experience with coffee has helped me to reflect on the fact that it is difficult to make changes, even when the changes are beneficial. There are two main areas to consider: one is the effect on our bodies, the other is how resistant our minds are to change. There was a time in my life when I watched myself eating chocolate with horror, because although my body seemed to crave the chocolate incessantly, I also recognized that it was contributing greatly to the oncoming illness I was trying to fight off at the same time.
The mind is so fascinating, though, isn’t it? As a tactic to switch off chocolate, I tried eating popcorn every time I craved chocolate. I put a lot of melted butter over it, and sometimes some nutritional yeast as an added filip. After some time, when I craved chocolate and thought about making popcorn, I could actually taste the butter in my mouth, even though I had not yet popped the corn. A perfect Pavlovian response, right there in my own mouth.
Of course, I react more severely to corn these days than some other avoids in my diet, so I was not healing my body by eating the popcorn. Sigh. It takes a lot of awareness to deal with habits we have cultivated over time. Knowing what the problem is helps a lot, but it doesn’t necessarily take it away. Repression makes it worse, in my experience. So by simply allowing myself to drink coffee over the past many months while dwelling on the fact that it is an avoid for B non-secretors, even as I drank it without condemnation, the switch was happily made. May we all continue to go forward in our little struggles of compliance and improving our health as a result.
The family of A’s I blogged a bit about last month is still following the BTD. Their economic situation looks to be improving, too.
Don, our extended stay O houseguest, is now able to consistently follow the O diet. Since doing so, he has seen marked improvement in his general overall health. Almost all of his mystery aches and pains that he had been told were only his imagination have disappeared along with the wheat he used to eat regularly. His asthma has lessened, too.
I have been going over some of my old family recipes and noticed something I find interesting. I have always preferred the cooking of one of my grandmothers over all of the cooking of all of my other relatives. Today, I realized why! Almost every one of her recipes is AB or extremely close to AB compliant!
After I realized that, it explains not only why I liked her cooking so much, but it also possibly explains why she and I had so much more in common with each other than with our other relatives...maybe she was an AB, too! We shared much of the same temperament...
Since we are now about half way through lent, I am starting to think about Easter and what to serve for our main meal. As some of you already know, it is my most favorite holiday of the year. We always have a lamb roast and deviled eggs, but the rest of the meal can vary greatly.
I wish I could go to a local event that is fast approaching - it’s a wine and cheese tasting with the ticket proceeds going to charity. There is also a food service trade show coming up in a few months, but I am going to stir clear of that if I can. The new tools will be neat, but I don’t need any and the food items are almost guaranteed to be avoids like the coffee and tea show this past August was.
Today, I had some nice ciabatta with an internal garnish of kalamatas and rosemary. I had some quality olive oil to use as a dip with it. I would have had some wine, too, but it wasn’t worth opening up a new bottle just for me.
Three snacks I like are Ezekiel toast (or spelt toast) smeared with peanut butter with a side of grapefruit or a bit of grapefruit juice sweetened with a touch of pineapple juice. I know we’re not supposed to be drinking with meals, but occasionally I do anyway.
Another snack is from Vita-Spelt (Purity Foods). Their sourdough pretzels are now locally available. They’re good with a paste of dry mustard ‘n’ water with a beer. The last one is caraway rye crackers smeared with herbed chevre (a mild goat cheese).
No, I’m not living off of all these snacks I’m mentioning here - that would be way too much grain, but there seems to be AB’s around that sound as if they are wanting fast ‘n’ easy snack ideas so I thought I’d throw some out in case they help anyone.
I wish Friday would get here.
Well, I wanted to let the BTD community know that I am alive, but I've been without cell phone and laptop for a few days now and this trend will continue throughout the remainder of the week due to various circumstances.
I went down to Iowa last weekend to help my little sister change apartments. She went from one crappy college apartment to a less crappy one. The rabbit that lived with her and her ex-roommate went with the ex-roommate so there will be no rabbit poo on her floor this time around. My folks handed down their nice living room furniture to her so we are all hoping she takes good care of it. We'll see what happens....I think she'll do better this time around, though.
I found a beautiful condo floor plan and was very excited to buy it until the brakes were put on the plans by recommendations from all my loved ones (including Grubster). It's a strange point of life. Do I bet on love or do I bet on real estate? Hmmm....do I have to choose between the two? What is the solution? Is there not some happy medium?
More on this later...I have to sleep now. Work summons me bright and early tomorrow.
Monday, was another wonderful Spring day in the lower 60’s (about 17*C). My family went over to the park that has the lake that I have mentioned in these blogs before. This time, I didn’t exercise though.
Yes, I should have...but sometimes just sitting by my husband, in the sun (I confess, I am part feline in this respect), on a rock outcropping, in a clearing, by a waterfall is really all I want. (Our son and Don met us back at the car later). Instead, I sat and thought. Some of what I thought about was a readers blog comment that was left for me this past Sunday.
It made me think, again, about a book that I regularly use as a reference. The person who left the comment is an AB, lives in a mixed blood type household, new to the BTD, feels overwhelmed, and needs recipes. Therefore, in this blog, I would like to recommend a book called How to Cook Without a Book by Pam Anderson (no, not the actress). I have recommended it once before over on the Forums side of this site.
This book does not have anything whatsoever to do with the BTD. Like most cookbooks, the majority of the recipes in it are next to if not completely useless for the BTD (unless “tweaked”). So, why do I want to spend a whole blog recommending it?
Because in it you will find exactly what the title claims: how to cook without a book. It teaches you how to cook from scratch in an easy to understand manner so that you can successfully invent your own recipes or learn how to successfully “tweak” your current ones to fit in with the BTD.
It covers everything from appetizers to desserts. It has both fast and easy recipes and methods as well as somewhat involved ones. Among other things, it talks about how to create your own salads & dressing to go with them. How to prepare proteins and flavorful pan sauces to go with them. How to make decent tasting and relatively fast and fresh weeknight meals.
Once you “get” the concepts that this book teaches I feel I can honestly say that you will truly never ever need another cookbook. You will rarely ever look in your pantry/refridgerator/freezer again and wonder just how you are going to tie together what you have on hand into a palatable meal.
Years ago, back when I was a culinary student, in order to graduate you had to take and pass what was/is called a black box. For those of you not familiar with culinary schools, what this means is this: you are given a black box (now you understand the name) or a bus tub that has a mishmash of ingredients in it.
You have no advance notice of what will be in the box. From those items (and a few other additional pantry/staple type items you have one hour or less to choose from), you must prepare and present a three to five course meal for two people.
During the test, you cannot talk to anyone else. You cannot work with anyone else. You cannot have any notes, cookbooks, or other such aids to help you. You have a time limit in which to plan, prepare, and plate (present) the meal to a panel of chef instructors for tasting, critique, various assorted types of grading, and an overall general score. The conditions under which you prepare this meal are not ideal just as they will not always be ideal in real restaurant kitchens. You must get a cumulative passing score or you do not yet get to advance to your externship. Externship was/is the last step before graduation.
I honestly believe that if someone reads this book and give its concepts a bit of practice that they too could take and pass a real black box test. Flavor(s) would be fine. Technique (read cooking method) would be fine. Appropriate utilization of product (read ingredients) would be fine. Time management would be fine. Their lowest scores would be in the areas of portion sizes and visual eye appeal.
Not because the book teaches badly in those areas, but because those two areas are not really covered. In a restaurant, portion sizes influence pricing which eventually translates into what amount of profit can be made. That is not a consideration for a home cooked meal. BTD portions are also different from SAD portions anyway. I feel the eye appeal part is more a creative form that you get the hang of with practice than something you can be taught in a book.
There is an interesting article in today’s newspaper about one of our local businesses. This business has expanded their distribution line of salmon products to several states from Washington to Ohio. They will also be shipping items from Texas to Florida. Whole Foods stores and Fred Meyer were mentioned as outlets for their specialty salmon products.
They have four different kinds of salmon sausages including a new breakfast sausage. A Wild Dog salmon hot dog should be available by early summer. These salmon products are made with all natural ingredients and have no preservatives. Unfortunately, they are not totally BTD compliant for some of us due to the milk. The ingredients are: salmon (pink, chum, sockeye), water, salt, low-fat powdered milk, spices (no MSG), garlic, pepper. Sausage (8 oz) retails for $5.98, a 4 oz pepperoni $4.95, and a two-stick pepperoni for $1.95 a package. Prices at your shop may differ.
I have tasted several of their products and they are good! They also have reindeer sausages and other popular Alaskan favorites. So, be on the lookout for these unusual salmon offerings. You might also check these websites for more Alaska Wild products: www.kenaiwild.org and /or www.seaproductsllc.com . Happy fishing!
Monday, February 21, 2005
Has it been a month since my last blog? How is that possible?
Oh well, life does that sometimes. There are times when I turn around and a whole chunk of time seems to have been misplaced. This is definitely one of those times. One of the reasons is that I am facing some serious problems in our life in general right now, and it take a lot of my energy to NOT spend my precious time and thoughts focusing in on things that I cannot change or influence in any way. I am not a religious person at all, though I am spiritual. One of the greatest and, to me, most important experiences of my life is to learn to be happy and thankful for ALL experiences, not just the ones that we like to label as “good”. There are so many interesting and, yes, wonderful things about “bad” experiences, not the least of which is that they allow us to fully experience and appreciate the good things in our lives.
I am a person whose nature drives her to think in terms of black and white and life keeps throwing those colors at me in piles, making me realize that most of life is actually the combination of the two, known as the infinite levels of gray. We live in the relative. I love the song, Life Is Just A Bowl Of Cherries from the musical, Fosse.
Life is just a bowl of cherries. Don’t take it serious, life’s too mysterious.
You work, you save…you worry so – but you can’t take the dough when you go, go, go.
So keep repeating, “it’s the berries”, the strongest oak must fall. The good things in life, to you were a loan…so how can you lose what you never owned?
I end up singing this to myself a lot. It helps to remind me that there is nothing that can be taken from me because I have everything that I need. The rest is an illusion.
I have to laugh because my six-year old loves the show Fosse, too (we have it on DVD), and she was goofing around and sang it, "life is just a bowl of bananas - don't take it serious". I thought that was great - better, in fact - it WOULD be hard to take a bowl of bananas seriously.
OK – to the diet and exercise. I was rolling along on the t-tapping and then I hit this past few weeks and just haven’t wanted to exercise. It’s too bad, too, because my body has really been trimming up rapidly. The nice thing about t-tapping, however, is that it is very forgiving. I am going to work out this week, and I expect that I’ll trim right back up. Sometimes I find that my body just needs a rest. Hopefully, I will come flying back. One thing that IS interesting is that even though I didn’t workout much for the past 2-3 weeks, the changes that the t-tapping had created in my body – the “cinching” up of my waist, the trimming of the back and the pull upward of the booty have stuck and stayed. I’ll be starting from a better place. I've been pretty compliant with eating, so that part seems to be working OK for me.
Well, I have a website to get built and up this week, so I’d better get going. I have a couple of thoughts that I’d like to write about Miranda’s column and something that blogger Suzanne wrote a day or two ago, but I’ll have to leave that for the next blog. Maybe I’ll write tomorrow. That would be a good thing.
In the meantime, I’ll just keep repeating, “it’s the berries” (or bananas).
Well, Spring has finally arrived where I live! My purple crocus are up and blooming, and all the other bulbs are at least up and my yard gets its first haircut (mowing) of the year tomorrow afternoon.
This morning at breakfast I had strawberries, eggs, and the first of the asparagus with a bit of clarified butter! This afternoon I spent planting my herb pots, trimming back the dead stuff that was around the strawberry plants, and general spring yard stuff. I really want to put out my swing in the backyard, but it’s still too early for that I think.
So, for the seasonal eating BTD-ing AB, what does spring bring with it? Obviously, the return of eggs, strawberries, and asparagus as I have already mentioned, but what else?
fennel bulbs (which are great braised, cut thin and made into a salad, or added to an au gratin), green garlic, Swiss chard (silverbeet or chard), kale, sorrel, frisée, dandelion salad, arugula, and Belgian endive (wonderful blanced to removed some of the bitterness and then baked in bechamel sauce with some swiss cheese and turkey bacon), baby spinach, watercress, lettuces of all sorts of types, broccoli rabe, white/button mushrooms, snow peas & sugar peas, green onions (scallions), baby leeks and beets, and red skinned potatoes, fresh ginger root, limes, lemons, papayas (which are nice mixed with lime and honey to make a fruit slush), pineapples, and if you are incredibly lucky: the tiny and perfumy frais des bois (Alpine strawberry). Cherries are still months away. They are sort of a bridge between spring and summer.
From the protein angle: salmon will soon be in season, the big succulent sea scallops, and of course, the traditional lamb. Herbs to go with these foods that are especially nice now or will be just very shortly are mint, dill, chives, parsley, thyme and various edible flowers to both candy for dessert garnishes and to toss into salads to add color and a peppery type of flavor. The herbs can be fun to play with to make new types of dressings and pesto like concoctions.
So, what kinds of things do I plan to make using these ingredients other than the obvious salads? One of my favorite breakfasts is swiss cheese & asparagus quiche with a rice crust. Asparagus drizzled with walnut oil and sprinkled with walnuts is good, too. There’s potage St. Germaine and one of my Belgian favorites: potato leek soup! Gravlax is good, too. Oh, I can't not mention manchego-swiss cheese puffs filled with asparagus.
With this spring time fare I also tend to actually prefer to switch to the white wines...sauvignon blanc, champagne, and assorted sparklings are my personal top three.
On to desserts now: lemon cheesecake, lemon trifle, layer cake with marzipan filling, white-chocolate mousse, pineapple compote, lemon or lime meringue style pies, tuxedo strawberries, and pink champagne wedding cake!
I tell ya folks, it's absolutely a terrible thing to be an AB - there’s just nothing whatsoever for us to eat! :-)
Music: It's Raining Men!!!
Mood: Tired but fulfilled
No, not really "raining men" nor am I going out on any hot dates......don't think Carlos would like that.....LOL! So much happening....where to start. With food, I guess :-D If you're in the Brooklyn/NYC area or ever are, I strongly reccomend the restaurant we've been to for the past 2 Valentine's days - Convivium Osteria.......
eeekkk!!! Forgot about the broccoli there for a second!!! Fortunately I was just in time. BTD cooking is fun but it does take a lot out of you sometimes :-)
C.O. was fabulous - very intimate, not super fancy & delicious food for all blood types. I had rabbit for the first time!!! Tastes just like REALLY good chicken. Too bad I can't FIND it everywhere like chicken. Then us B antigen carriers would be set! Their lamb chops were divine, big greek olives & bread as we sat down & if you can eat pasta......both their pasta dishes are to die for! Duck filled raviolis!!! An avoid that I felt the next day but it was soooooo good!!! There was even a quail apatizer! But I resisted that one. :-) All their food is from local farms.......shocking right? Seems that all the best food does not come from those giant big name supermarkets like they'd like us all to think....... Convivium's prices weren't too bad either for a night out. Do a google or city search on it.....very yummy.....not the kind of place you want to bring a rowdy crowd to but dinner for two in the wine cellar (their bottom level) is very romantic.
I fixed a simple turkey recipe the other day but can't remember it......I'll see if I can find it again & post. I'm trying a "tofu souffle" tonight. Not the sweet kind, more like a casserole. Looks interesting, I'll post the recipe if it comes out well :-)
The broccoli I'm fixing? Just boiling a few tablespoons of water, a tablespoon of olive oil, a bit of tamari sauce (that's soy sauce w/out the wheat & corn syrup) & some onion powder. Turned it down to simmer, popped in the chopped up stalks, put on the lid for a few minutes & when I got up a moment ago added the "tree tops." Basically steamed broccoli w/ some seasoning. I don't know how they did it but at C.O. Carlos said the broccoli was "pan seared" with olive oil & garlic. By far, the best broccoli I've had in my life! If I can only figure out how to make it......
For desert that night, we ended up switching our deserts.....I had this "creama frita" thing Carlos ordered. Tasted just like fresh churro you get in Valencia, Spain during "Las Fallas" festival. (Very different from the Mexican one's) I'm very sure it had quite a few avoids but unlike most cream filled things, I could really taste the light, fluffy egg in this one & I think that's why I liked it so much.
I'm sure a lot of people are going to like this.......I ordered a decadent "flourless" chocolate cake. Wonderful but after 1 bite it was too much for me, the chocolate lover of the house! Shockingly, my O who doesn't usually like many deserts, gobbled this down with ease. Don't know what was in it but very chocolately.....you're just going to have to go there & get one for yourself!!!
Ahhhh.....broccoli's ready! Souffle's going to be a while so I'm going to enjoy come cous cous w/ my broccoli. Hope everyone's have a nice, BTD friendly weekend!!!
Well, I’m back online on my computer…again! When I finished getting my studio together, I brought in my old, some-what trusty computer and placed it upon the large L-shaped desk/workbench I had built. The only problem was that there is no available computer –thingy to connect to the internet. I was told to buy a wireless network card. I did and my eldest son installed it for me. Unfortunately, it really doesn’t necessarily want to work when I need or want it to do so. It especially doesn’t want to connect to the internet after I have rebooted the computer. So, for the past week, it has refused to connect. A friend came over today and managed to get things going again.
My husband is still not fully accepting of the BTD, however, I did get a chuckle when he presented me with a box of Hershey’s Pot of Gold chocolates for Valentines Day. He said there had been an article in the newspaper and a woman featured was very into good nutrition. She had said that Hershey’s chocolates were okay. Therefore, that is what he bought! I really appreciated that gesture and thoughtfulness…and those tasty chocolate morsels!
He became my knight in shining armor again a couple days later when he found my sterling silver and blue lapis lazuli bracelet I had made a few days earlier as part of a set. I had worn it and it apparently become unhitched while I was playing with my friend’s lovebird. I hadn’t realized it ws missing until that night. I had considered it lost forever. Fortunately he found it and my set is complete again.
Meals have not been up to the usual this week although we have had several really good & BTD compliant meals. We’ve also missed the mark more often than I would like to admit. My husband has taken a couple bags of halibut out of the freezer and put them into the refrigerator. Tomorrow is a new day with not much scheduled, so if I do't get too busy in the studio I might remember early enough to prepare something really good. If I do get too busy, he'll bake the halibut and fix up some frozen vegetables to go along with. Either way, we'll have a good dinner.
Music: Radiohead, The Bends
Mood: Clove bud and patchoulli
Top 'o' the evenin' to ya' fellow BTD's. Bes wishes to all of you. Though I would throw out a randomness inspired rant for the heck of it.
Have seen a few good movies as of late. Mean Machine, The Hours, The Insider, etc. Pretty good flicks. Took the 'lil bro to see The Polar Express at the cheap seats. I loved the book when i was little, the illustrations absolutley captivated me. The movie was tolerable. Kinda boring... I also watched the horror flick, The Grudge. Not a great movie by any means, but I have to give it points for being disturbing as all hell. Watch it alone in the dark for a fright.
Been drinking crap wine lately... Franzia cabernet and merlot, house wines at restaurants, and bars.
I'm not a big white wine fan, but I did share a really nice bottle of Pinot Grigio with a friend the other day. Rancho Zabaco 2003 Reserve. For only $15, it was a pretty good bottle. Pairs excellent with steamed, seasoned, vegetables. I'm sure you could find it cheaper than I got it... I usually only buy wine when there's a good sale on it. I also have the pleasure of having a friend that manages a liquor store across the river. He lets me have any wine at 50 cents above cost. Thanks Shane! Too bad they don't have a better selection...
The vegan thing is smooth sailing. It certainly agrees with me more. As I've said, not sure how long it will last. I see no forseeable end though... I've been steaming tons of veggies lateley, lot's of oatmeal and nuts and seeds too. I realized that I've been skimping on the leafy greens though! Lot's of broccoli, carrots, squashes, onions, celery etc, but no greens! I've put a stop to that by grabbing a few bunches of beautiful, swiss (red) chard at the grocery store. Lot's of cilantro too, buit I wouldn't really call cilantro a "leafy green." I'll be using swiss chard, spinach, romaine, mustard greens, kale (flowering purple, regular, and lacinado/dinosaur), and collard greens, on a rotating basis. When I run out of one, I'll grab another. Done and done.
A few random quips from my head:
1) Holy crap, amaranth is really high in iron! Really! Amaranth and blackstrap mollases is all a vegan type A needs to get the daily iron requirement.
2) Dandelion is really high in potassium! That's good... Cuz I canna have bananas
Fabulous for the liver too! Take care of your liver kids. REALLY!
3) The Quantum Touch... Ever hear of it? Hands on energy healing... I suggest you research it... Lemme know what you think.
4) Positive thinking and best wishes can be sent to anyone, just by visualizing them and focusing on them in a positive light! Love & compassion friends, they make the world go 'round. Try it, yo.
5) A healthy liver can only process 1-2 units of alcohol every hour. One unit being a half pint of beer, 4 oz. of wine, or 1.5 oz of liquor. Anything after that is toxic overload... I'll have to keep this one in mind... He he. Did I mention that most Americans don't have a healthy live? Research Liver flushing and liver cleansing herbs. For your own sake. In todays toxic world, it's all the poor thing can do to keep us clean. Get off your ass, and take your health into your own hands. Read up!
Later gators. Love and light to all of you. (see how easy that is?) Not spell checking this wither... Ha hah ah ah ha a!
Before I begin this blog, I'd like to share an excerpt from "365 Saints" by Woodeene Koenig-Bricker, which is a book I read every night before bed (see previous blog entry entitled "Four Saints" for details):
"February 14th: Love
St. Valentine (C. A.D. 269):
(Description)"Only two saints-Valentine and Patrick-have their feast days listed on ordinary calendars. Ironically, we know almost nothing about the real St. Valentine except that he was a Roman priest who was martyred for his faith. Why a celibate priest should be associated with love and lovers since as far back as Chaucer's time is a good question. For whatever the reason, Valentine's name has become virtually synonymous with expressions of affection.
"Although we may not understand why a priest is the patron of lovers, it's easy to know why we have a saint especially assigned to the virtue of love. Love is an essential ingredient for life. Experiments have demonstrated that infants who are provided with adequate food and warmth but denied human contact and affection will literally die. Even plants and animals respond positively to love. In fact, love might be said to be the life blood of all creation. Although the astronomer Carl Sagan calls us "star stuff," we are more than that: We are love.
"One of the immutable laws of the universe is that the more we love, the more we will be loved. If we try to hoard our love, we will end up with nothing, for love cannot exist in the same space as possessiveness, dependency, or selfishness. The very essence of love demands that we give it away."
"[Introspective question for the day]: How does knowing that I was created both to love and be loved make me feel?
[Meditation for the day]: I know I am loved."
After a weekend at Six Flags (in the emotional sense), I returned to work just hoping I'd find the energy to make it through the day. Surprisingly, yes. There was no problem in that regard. Work was lovely. I think a lot of patients, employees, and everyone who came in contact with them to make or break their day must have gotten laid this weekend. You see, everyone had a goofy smile on their face and no one was in a particularly bad mood. Oh, thank goodness we have one day per year where love and romance is a requirement, haha!
My latest kick foodwise is Goat Yogurt. This kept me going mid-morning. The fruit ones are nice, but I really think my favorite flavor is vanilla. Later, one of those dark chocolate bars to be shared with employees from the company INtelligent Nutrients (spawn of Aveda). If you have never eaten this type of chocolate bar, you are in for a treat! It's dark chocolate infused with L-Theanine, chamomile, lavender, blueberries, sandalwood, etc. It's the best tasting medicine you'll ever eat!
Hmmmm.....all these fleeting thoughts of all the free advertisement I have planned to distribute through the blog due to recent foods I've eaten.
I went to the Wedge after work, OK, first I went to Target, then the Wedge. I bought a new shredder because my old one pooped out on me, but like dating someone with a mediocre compatabililty to your goals and spiritual values in life, especially high school and college dating, you know there's gotta be something better out there. And there was a much better model at the Office Depot last week. So I had to take back the cheap one I bought. Oh, this new one works SO well! Then I went around Target, and, oh, how I LOVE target! They have the coolest home furnishing things going on, with all these cool imports.....ASIA in one section, INDIA in the next, AFRICA in the next, EUROPE, then LATIN AMERICA! Very cool stuff and only available for a limited time! Foolish! This should be a permanent offering! Bummer dude!!!! And the problem is I don't want to buy anything until I own my own place. I'm not investing anything further into this rent-controlled space. Grrr!
Well, the reason this blog is entitled "Lucky Girl" is multi-fold. I am lucky for many things in life. I have a wonderful family that, while they don't really understand me (they really aren't sure if I'm their daughter sometimes, haha), love me just the same. I am lucky for friends from all over the world, all over the country from high school, college and that strange real-world-entering era that somehow "sensed" I needed their love and company and have reached out to me via internet and phone. I am lucky a job that (despite the air-traffic control stress levels) allows me to interact with the public and suggest things like elderberry and flaxseed oil, and people take me seriously since there is a PharmD at the end of my name. I am lucky to have a cozy little place on the internet where I can write about my life and my love for wholesome organic foods. I am lucky to have been able to spend an entire day last fall with an amazing kindred spirit named Dr. D who I could have still followed around for countless hours, taking in everything there is to know about naturopathic medicine. And then there is Aaron (the significant other formerly known as Grubster).
Well, to continue this story, coming back home I decided to check out this cute little gourmet grocery store called LUCKYGIRL located in a local Minneapolis "earth-friendly" coupon book. I was so excited; it sounded like "such an Erika kind of place" from the advertisement. But as I drove by the lit-up sign on 38th and Grand, I found no grocery store, but only an empty sad little place that no longer was.
A couple of doors down was some sort of Grand Ave. Bakery....oh, the food smelled delicious from the outside. I figured I could get a meal in and find out what happened to LUCKYGIRL. I found out that it closed in November which is a shucks kinda thing b/c the coupon book is for 2005. Oh well. No money, no store. Well this restaurant was not normally opened on Mondays but they had special reservations for Valentine's Day couples. Of course, here I am in this big metropolitan area with a million people but physically alone today due to life circumstances beyond and not-so-beyond my control. It was one of those Carrie Bradshaw Sex and the City moments such as, "singles, counter, couples, table" or whatever that restaurant guy says as she goes into the diner alone. I laughed it off. I'm physically alone, but emotionally and spiritually surrounded with love today. It's weird how you just know that. And as for the Mr. Big in my life, he's slowly making his way back to the Big Minneapple.
So, with this grocery store experience, the title of my blog was going to be "Unlucky girl." Then I got home. I had all these groceries to put away from the Wedge, one of the containers was leaking down my pants, and the first thing I noticed in coming through the door was the smell of a rotten fish head since I forgot to take out the garbage this morning after the trout extravaganza this past weekend (see previous blog). Oh, dear. With the smell of death in the air and the distraction of how gosh darn messy my apartment is right now with all the papers I'm recycling and shredding, I barely noticed the most gorgeous bouquet of a dozen red roses from Aaron!!! Hello! EARTH TO ERIKA!!!! THIS IS A GOOD THING!!!!
It was literally a moment of: WAKE UP AND SMELL THE ROSES!
I laughed at myself in this humbling moment. I felt so bad for the person who had to enter my place today! Here this poor soul in the concierge office delivering flowers, chocolates, lingerie, and Lord knows what other romantic and/or kinky stuff for all the residents in the building, then coming into my apartment, having to deal with the fish smell and the bags of paper sitting by the door, waiting to go into the recycling bin! Oh, I wish I had it on camera, it must have been just hilarious (or perhaps soberingly painful?) to see the person's face. I mean, like this person must be thinking, "OK, this guy is in love with this girl in Minneapolis who obviously makes enough money to afford living here, and he sends her a dozen long-stemmed red roses and her apartment smells like rotten fish! If that's not love, I don't know what is."
Me neither. I'm just thankful for the chance to share it with someone special today, no matter how far away he is. Thank you again, Aaron. With love and smooches. (ew, gross, internet PDA, what is this world coming to? Hmmm...it's not as gross as the trout, which, by the way, has been placed in its proper "Rubbish" shoot outside of my apartment unit! Whew!)....well, the point is that I'm LUCKY to have Aaron in my life.
On that note, have a lovely Valentine's Day! And if you can do one nice thing for the person you live with tomorrow morning (even if that person is yourself), make that one thing "remembering to take out the garbage and then actually doing it." You'll thank me later.
A couple of nights ago I decided to buy a rainbow trout fillet at the co-op. I wasn't quite sure what to do with it, but decided to give it a try last night since it was Friday. It was a good experience for me, to actually cook a fish rather than just order it at one of these yuppie restaurants. It came gutted, meaning the head was still on it when it was purchased. It was sort of disturbing yet I really felt thankful for the reminder that eating that fish means killing a living creature for my own personal gain. We as a society are so detached from the killing process that goes into making meat that it's good every once in a while to remind ourselves how thankful we should be that another living creature has given its life for our lives.
After rinsing off the fish, I added the juice of one lemon to the inside of the fillet. I should have just used one-half lemon. Helpful tip for next time. I then took two cloves of garlic and pressed them, then rubbed them into the fish. I finished of the seasoning by adding some recently purchased herbamare. Jim kept talking about this stuff in his blog and I finally figured out where it was in the co-op the other night. It is quite yummy. I found it near all the seasonings, near the salt.
I wrapped the fish in foil and baked it for about twenty minutes at 375F. It turned out perfectly. That was way too easy. I really need to cook more often.
Later, I ate one of those new Fat Flush tortillas made by the French Meadow Bakery (made with sprouted wheat and other good stuff). I warmed it up a bit on the frying pan, then added walnut lentil pate, pesto, and goat cheese. Greasy, but yummy.
And I've had WAY too much chocolate. I am truly a chocolate whore. But a high class one....only devouring the finest from local chocolatiers, haha.
Tonight I decided to give the quail eggs I bought a try. They are little and cute and kind of a pain to peel off the shells. I added them to garden salad, drizzled with a vinegar-free dressing. Nothing special, but certainly healthful. Not all my meals are always that exciting.
The other night at Ash Wednesday, a man tapped on my car window asking for money for the "bus." It's a bit hard to not feel charitable in your heart when you see someone on the street after church. Unfortunately, begging has become a pandemic in the Twin Cities because of some free speech ordinance permitting people to beg so long as they are not breaking any other laws (jay-walking, assaults, public intox, etc). Every day I see the same people out there, making it an occupation.
Well, I'm very torn by the subject of begging. All too often it's easy to be skeptical. But I will always remember the kindness of strangers one day back from when I was in Madison driving back to Minneapolis last spring. I forgot my purse at Aaron's place. I was over emotional, cranky, didn't want to leave and left it right there on the counter. Halfway home, I ran out of gas. It was midnight and I had no clue how I was to get home. I was freaking out because I had to open the pharmacy at 8 am! The gas station wouldn't take a credit card number over the phone. Two or three twenty something guys happened to be in the gas station. One was kind enough to give me twenty dollars. I felt so stupid. Of course, I had on the silliest clothes that night coming from a leisurely day off from Aaron's place, looking young and crazy, and nothing like a pharmacist. I was so grateful they gave me the benefit of the doubt. I wish I could repay them.
So with this in mind, I told the beggar I didn't have money since I recognized him as one of the "frequent flyers" on that city block, but that I'd give him yogurt. He took it and then moved on to the next car. I just hope he actually ate the yogurt. I'll never know what became of it. I think from now on, I'm going to try to have a steady supply of bus passes, granola bars, and other non-money items for people who truly need help with food and transportation when I drive past them. As for the drug users and alcoholics, they have my prayers, hopes that they find comfort and salvation in the churches near the curbs where they beg. The doors are always open.
Speaking of Aaron, he is in my prayers. He is probably reading this as he frequently reads my blogs. I wish the world weren't so confusing, that anger, hurt, and hopelessness wouldn't plague our hearts. I myself must embrace love and forgiveness better. It must start from within. A wise, loving woman (his mom) said something beautiful to me in describing where she finds her inner strength and love:
"I finally realized that forgiveness is not once and for all, but more like breathing - done daily and regularly."
If you can go through the day, forgiving yourself, your partner, your family, your employer at least once, is that not a good start?
Today, I attended a Valentine’s Day brunch that was given by a woman’s group that I am a member of...and was pleasantly surprised not once, but twice! This was especially nice since I had been somewhat dreading the brunch. I had even seriously considered not attending. It doesn’t take a mental giant to know that the BTD and the SAD are not compatible.
I had anticipated the usual smorgasbord of very tasty and tempting foods chock full o’ AB avoids. I was correct: two jumbo tables spread with ‘em. I took one look at ‘em and started wondering how I was going to talk myself out of eating any of it.
I considered two old dieting strategies. I could take some of it, moosh it around on my plate so it looked like I was eating and then discard it. I could decline everything because I was “on a diet” and would have to abstain. I didn’t really want to do that either. Something about both of those two ideas seemed deceitful.
I also wondered if I could just stay too busy for anyone to notice that I hadn’t eaten anything...but I was in a mood of “why can they have some treats and I can’t?!”. I stalled and stalled and stalled getting into the line after the business part of the meeting was over.
Then, I got into line. Guess what! Further down the line was a section that I hadn’t seen on my first cursory look! There was beautiful ripe chunks of pineapple, glistening red grapes, cantaloupe, watermelon, deviled eggs, and a salad with only one avoid that would be easy to remove! HOT DOG! The usual dressing problem wasn’t an issue either.
As I sat there munching on my plate of food and talking to the lady sitting next to me, I realized that I had almost not come to this function. If I hadn't, I wouldn’t have gotten the information I had received during the business part of the meeting or to know these people any better. I also wouldn’t have noticed how good the fruit and salad really went together.
Then the second surprise arrived. Someone walked up to me and said that I was looking especially well. I said thanks. Then she asked me what I had been doing since I looked different. Remember that I haven’t been shedding any weight recently. Yet, she was still noticing something different about me.
I told her I was a BTD’er. She looked very surprised and said that she had gotten “that book, too” and that although it had made sense to her, she just hadn’t ever really done anything with it. I asked her which book she had (I feel it is important to make sure that people really do have THE BTD and not one of the knock-off versions). She didn’t know, but described Eat Right’s cover to me.
She said that she is going to have to find her copy of Eat Right and go back over it again. Hopefully, actually knowing a real person whom she has been observing the changes being made in was all the additional encouragement she needed to actually take the action needed to embark on this way of life.
I am very glad that I didn’t chicken out and not go this morning because I had incorrectly assumed that it would be little more than an exercise of frustration.
Red wine is, at worst, a neutral no matter what your blood type or secretor status. However, wine, at least in the USA, can be rather intimidating to some people. I would speculate that this is because about 33% of our population does not ever drink any type of wine at all, ever.
According to some estimates that I have read*, as much as 90% of all the wine consumed in the USA is done so by only 10% of the remaining 66% of the population which makes it less than 10% of our total population. What I really found unusual was that per capita, we rank #33 in the world, but for total consumption, we are 3rd.
As a nation, we make wine, we sell wine, we drink wine, some areas have wine festivals, we export it, most of us are from European ancestors...and yet less than 10% of us regularly consume it? We are the only country in the entire world, that I am aware of, that requires by law a health warning label on every bottle, yet for all of the wines we export the opposite is true: they cannot have any kind of a health warning on them.
Many people cannot read and understand the ingredients label on the “every day” type foods they buy and eat regularly. For whatever reason though, they think they must completely understand wine(s) before they are confident enough to purchase even just one bottle to try.
Are you one of those people out there that have never tried wine, but would like to? If you are, I would like to suggest that you do three things. First, if you have a wine shop near where you live, go check it out. The staff should be able to talk to you and help lead you to some bottles that you will most likely enjoy. They also will most likely tell you about some tastings they will have. Tastings are a way that you can try various wines without having to purchase an entire bottle first.
Second, I would suggest that you check out wine information on the web - it’s free and you don’t have to go anywhere. To get you started, you might like to try somewhere like a restaurant that sells wine. One that I know of off the top of my head is: http://www.olivegarden.com/ourwines/ There are others out there as well if you don’t care for that particular site. Another possibility would be your local library or a bookstore.
Third, I would suggest that you go out to your local grocery or wine shop and get yourself a bottle. No matter how much you read there is nothing that can replace your nose and your tastebuds.
Well, what if you haven't got a clue which bottle to pick at random? Generally, most Americans currently prefer white wines. They are generally milder and lighter in flavor. If you are a blood type that should not have white wine then I would suggest trying a rosé (pink) colored one...those will have the best chance of being only off-dry and not strong flavored.
Another suggestion would be that if you are (or were) a coffee drinker that you compare your food preferences. Most people who like strong flavored coffees like stronger flavored foods and wines. These people would most likely prefer the stronger flavor of the reds.
Many wineries now have a description on their label describing what their wine tastes like and which foods they recommend to go with it. Generally, these are accurate and reliable. They have to be. If they give you faulty information about their product, you will not buy it again.
I once served a meal to a group of 16 friends of mine. While I was bringing around the wine and asking if they preferred red or white several of them commented that since they were having fish that they must have white because you always drink white wine with fish. Well, actually, I don’t. I drink whatever I’m in the mood for.
When first starting out, the only thing you have to consider when pairing food and wine is what you like. If you’re not sure what you like, generally speaking, the stronger the flavor of the food, the stronger the flavor of the wine will need to be so that neither one overpowers the other. In addition, I would suggest that you try a wine that is new to you on it’s own for the first few sips. That way you are really tasting the wine rather than the wine and the food together. This can be important because there are some foods that do not go well with some wines.
One last thing before I close this blog: for those of you out there that already have discovered wine, I would like to leave you a red suggestion and a white. I am having Italian fare this evening so for the red: Savignola Paolina’s Chianti Classico. For the white, a soave superiore: Sagramoso, also from Italy. If you prefer to stay here in the states - Nicky Hahn’s Rex Goliath Shiraz ’03 - it’ll only set you back about $9/bottle.
Welcome to the wonderful world of wine! Have a great weekend!
*my statistical information is from the book Exploring Wine by Steven Kolpan, Brian H. Smith, and Michael A. Weiss.
Yesterday I went to my first full-fledged T’ai Chi class, after several months of training, learning the 108 moves of the set. Not that I remember all of the movements or their sequence: I don’t. But I do know how to do them, and if I stay with this new class, I will probably, over time, remember them all simply because we do them every week during the class.
My new teacher placed great emphasis on the warm-up parts of the T’ai Chi discipline. We spent more than an hour of our two-hour class working with two very tiring (for this beginner) movements: toyu and donyu. In retrospect, toyu is a very nice exercise to do for an extended period of time, a slow and graceful stretching and twisting movement. Donyu is a horse of another colour. It is a slow squat movement which, when done properly (as adjusted and directed by the instructor) surprised me with its ability to create a cardiovascular effect, as well as appall me in terms of my demonstrated lack of stamina. After a short while, I was breathing heavily and sweating enough to remove my top shirt, and feeling the stretch in my back and legs. After doing the exercise a fair number of times and stopping to rest, I was aware that my thighs and lower back were responding to their new treatment by generating warmth in those areas. There was also a sense of improved circulation throughout my entire body from head to toe. Just what this old body really needs, and most interesting.
The school of T’ai Chi in which I have been taking classes is called the Taoist Tai Chi Society. It was founded by a Chinese monk who came to Toronto and began teaching people his approach to T’ai Chi with an emphasis on health benefits as opposed to the obvious martial arts application. As a result, many people arrive for class in wheelchairs or using a cane or walker to get there, and are warmly welcomed by their instructors who support their attempts to regain their health through this highly beneficial exercise. Of course, if most of us are lucky, we will find T’ai Chi before we need external methods of transporting our bodies, and minimize the need for using these various appliances.
After my class yesterday, I wobbled out onto the street and loosely “walked” home, a twenty minute journey when my legs are not “rubberized”. Somehow I managed to get home all right. I soaked in a hot bath in the afternoon, feeling that was a wise decision. It was. In the late afternoon my hips and lower back were making themselves very known to me, with a bit of stiffness if I stayed in the same position for very long. However, I slept more deeply than I have in a very long time, and woke this morning with a minimum of stiffness, to my surprise. It is obvious that my adventures in T’ai Chi have just begun. I look forward to the many surprises awaiting me as the weeks roll by.
What a dinner we enjoyed last night! A friend of my daughter’s is a crabber. Crabbing season in the Alaskan waters just finished and he gave her a big bag of freshly cooked, iced, snow crab legs that were ready for eating. Dinner consisted of either heated crab legs (for me) or iced crab legs (my husband) served with a little butter! No veggies, no grains, no fruits, no anything else…just gorging on the bounty of fresh crab meat! We rarely get the opportunity to feast on such a delicacy and thoroughly enjoyed it, mess and all. At least the other meals during the day provided beneficial veggies.
Tonight we’re going to have fried chicken (coated in a blend of kamut flour and arrowroot), with steamed broccoli and carrots drizzled with a little butter and sprinkled with some parsley. If I decide to go shopping, I’ll buy some salad greens for dinner, too.
We’ve received in excess of two feet of snow this week. Several inches are being added today. When I look out the front window all I see is a snow mound about 8 feet tall and the top of a building across the street. It is supposed to be partly cloudy tomorrow. At least the Anchorage Fur Rendezvous world championship sled dog races should be a go. A few days ago they were thinking about canceling it due to a lack of snow.
I really enjoy watching the sled dog races. Running dogs has always been the only winter outdoor activity in which I’ve wanted to participate. Those dogs love to race. They jump and yelp with anticipation as they prepare to leave the starting line. Sometimes it takes a few handlers to keep the team(s) from leaving the starting gate before time. With the current snow conditions the trail should be well packed and fairly fast unless some massive thawing occurs between now and race day.
Most of the dogs are extremely well cared for and demonstrate their affection abundantly to their owner (dog driver – musher). I swear you could walk through my husband’s cousin’s sled dog lot blindfolded (80+ dogs) and not have to worry about stepping on the unpleasant doggie poo. The dogs take care of business shortly after eating a primarily B.A.R.F. (bones and raw food) meal. The lot is cleaned of all debris immediately regardless of weather or temperature and each dog is given a good petting and hug.
In one of my last blogs I wrote about how I had decided to get my act together and start getting rid of some of the excess that I still am lugging around. Well, that was (and still is) my intention...it seems that things have done their darndest to derail me though so far. I would like to just say “...tomorrow is another day.”
The problem is, it seems like everyday for these last two weeks has ended with that tomorrow phrase for me...and it’s getting ridiculous. Today, I am going to be happy with three good things: I didn’t have any avoids today (but I did yesterday and the day before), I didn’t have any sugar (but again, I did yesterday and the day before) and I did get in a very tiny bit of stretching which felt very good.
The portion control and real exercise though were once again a total wash. I did have a nice walk around the lake though on Monday with my husband and son. I think that I will look at this whole thing like this: last week was a mess in more ways than one and there was nothing I could do about it, this week I was pulling out of it, and tomorrow, I will be back on track.
I was giving some more thought to gardening and am mulling the idea of getting some Jerusalem Artichokes (sunchokes) for my A and O’s to use as potato replacements. Don (one of the O’s) had some prepared like potato chips the other day and really liked them with the duck salad he had for lunch.
I have the NordicTrak, but I would really much rather be outside. Just recently, I have had a strong hankering for more epee and traditional long bow (50 lb pull, not a recurve, no site) work. I would need to stick with stationary targets for the bow since I haven’t used it in a long time. I would also need to find a new safe place to shoot since the range I used to use is no longer available to me. I also need to work on my equipment before I can think about fencing seriously again.
Well, HAPPY CHINESE NEW YEAR! Gone is the year of the Monkey and now we are back to the year of the Phoenix/Rooster/Cock, whatever you prefer......and if you take Lent seriously, I hope Ash Wednesday was also spiritually fulfilling for you.
Work was tough today. It was hard enough working 8 hours w/no other pharmacist and therefore no break, but I almost had to work a double (aka 16 hours!!!) had it not been for a pharmacy manager from a neighboring store volunteering to cover the evening shift. God Bless her for doing this! I would not have been able to go to the chiropractor, shop at the co-op, or attend Ash Wednesday soup supper and Mass had it not been for her generosity in coming in to cover someone's sick call shift on her day off. I ate a hard-boiled Omega-3 free range egg in the morning followed by Ezekiel 4:9 tortillas later in the day. Some rep brought by some Krispy Kreme doughnuts trying to get pharmacists to attend a financial planning dinner. Since I wasn't sure if I'd be able to leave the building earlier that day, I indulged in the trans fats for fear of corporate starvation!
So, back at the Basilica (www.mary.org) we had a good Mass tonight. I am really looking forward to this Lenten season. As you remember from last year, I decided to give up my soap opera (The Young and the Restless). It was a good thing to give up. Unfortunately, later in the year, my life became a bit of a soap opera and I didn't need to watch it anyway, haha, but the truth is, it was good to step away from one of our lowest forms of pop culture life and focus on more important things.
This year, I have some things brewing in my soul as to what I'd like to focus on in my "fast". I think one thing for sure is working on my potty mouth. It's not as bad as it has been in the past, but sometimes using cuss words to communicate strong emotion seem like the only reasonable way to vent frustration without getting arrested for real violence. Well, back in 12th grade I gave up cussing and it worked up until I didn't get into Northwestern University and in the same week, the guy I had a crush on all year in high school took another girl to prom. Many f-bombs were dropped that week at the ripe old age of 18. Oh, how I thought life was over, haha!!!
Well, things happen for a reason. That guy that I loved then and still do in a different way came out of the closet two years later while he was in college. No wonder we never got past that kiss on the cheek, haha! And if it weren't for Northwestern University rejecting me (I was going to be a psych major probably) I would never have taken the pharmacy track at Creighton in Omaha, and would never have met.......Aaron.
There you have it...the name of the mystery man in my life. While we left Grubster in the woods, the man who embodies the spirit of the bear never quite left the premises of my heart. Nor did I leave his. Stay tuned for the next blog when I will, promise, promise, write about the great weekend with the Significant Other Formerly Known as Bear and his mom, one of the coolest women in the world.
So this Lenten season, if the Fit hits the Shan (see, already I've gone one whole blog without saying a naughty word!!), I'm going to give patience a chance. I'm going to try to better see God's grace in things even when I can't seem to see past the muck that covers the clear path. Curb judgmental thinking patterns, turn lemons into lemonade (or in the case of type As, lemon and water!!!)
And I'm going to do one form of exercise daily, even if just a gentle yoga sequence. Really, really, really thank God for giving me life, by using what I was given. I've almost <> away my 20s (ooh, that was a close one, almost cussed again!) so it's time to really live in the present moment and celebrate the peak of youth.
There are a few other things that I'm working on, those being between myself and God. While I'm a very open person, some things are best left unspoken. In the lyrics of Depeche Mode, "Words like violence/Break the Silence/Coming crashing in/Into my little world."
Tonight after a light mid-supper of vegan tomato soup/black bean soup before Mass, I had a wonderful dish from the Wedge deli...Mung dal (mung beans mixed with a curry-like sauce over brown rice). YUM!
That's all for now. The cool blog is still coming soon....
Mood: Wishing I was in a spa
Music: The musings of my mind....
Oh.....I just wish there were 2 or 3 of me to get everything done!!! I can't stand Board of Education inspections - they drive the whole daycare center bonkers & make us go to long meeting about what we should do but never give us enough time to do it in - plus the meetings eat up our "break time" you know, that time that teachers actually get their displays done.....how frustrating......
On the happy note...I believe I've found a way to exercise that will make me happy. Yes, the warm weather is just a couple of months away but I don't to wait that long. Besides, if your like me, you make big plans to go outside & exercise in the beautiful sun 3 times a week but then your lucky if you actually go through with it once a month......only b/c your O husband is nagging you like a puppy dog who needs to go out.....darn O's where do they get all that energy???? (LOL) So, I have invested in DDR!!!! That's right! I've joined the rest of Gen. Y's & a few Gen. X'ers (funny - apparently 1980 is both the starting point of gen Y & ending point of gen X according to most marketing articles......) & have bought the new Dance Dance Revolution Game for X box. This is going to be fun.
If you haven't seen it, ask your average 15-25 year old - they'll either love it or think you're a complete square. A video game where you stomp to the music on a large pad. You mess up the beats - you're a loser so, you have incentive to actually get your butt moving. :-D And, I don't have to worry about the weather. Why is it, 70% of the time I feel like I'm actaully going to get going & exercise it rains or gets dark too fast? I'll have to let you all know how it goes. I've played it at a couple of parties & laughed so hard at my own absurdity while some others worked up a sweat getting there groove on. Exercise that's actually fun.....imagine that!
Please, if you haven't visited the forums - do so. A wealth of information & super nice people to chat with. I visit it all the time & have such a nice time at it. & remember, if you carrier the A antigen, drink your warm lemon water EVERY MORNING. Your tummy will thank you.
Music: Aphex Twin - Windo Licker
Mood: Olba's Oil
Please read this entire message! It's crucial to your health that you read this and take action! I've been luggin' 5 gallon jugs around for a while now, but the occasional tap water does enter my body now and then... I know where I live (Moorhead, MN) the water is undeed lightly chlorinated... Of course... It doesn't take much... Not sure about Fargo, ND. The city across the river where I work, etc.
But you can bet finding out is a big priority...
On another note... My next blog will be about plastics... Wich ones are safe, wich ones aren't, why, how, when, where, etc... Who knew Nalgene bottles and the PVC baby bottles and jugs we all leak carcinogenic compounds into whatever we put in them... Especiall if said substance is hot! Check out the latest issue of Delicious Living, or get your but in gear and start reading info on health related matters on line if you can't wait. Go on now... Get yer head outta the sand... Best wishes~
And... Forgive the typos!
Chlorine Study in Japan Chlorine Health Alert
http://www.fulvic.com/healthalert/chlorine2.htm From: Hank Roelofs
Cancer fighting nutrients become deadly when combined with chlorinated
Some of naturebs most valuable and essential anti-cancer and
phytochemical nutrients, which are commonly found in food have been
discovered to form deadly cancer causing substances when consumed or
combined with chlorinated tap water. This discovery includes familiar
foods including soy, fruits, vegetables, tea, many health products, and
even some vitamins. Research has proven that these essential nutrients
the exact same families of compounds, that even in infinitesimal
have been tormenting the water treatment and chlorine industries for
Recently, a joint study was undertaken in Japan by research scientists
the National Institute of Health Sciences and
ShizuokaPrefecturalUniversity.They determined that natural organic
substances originating from foods, including fruits, soy, and green or
black tea, react when tap water is chlorinated, forming dangerous
causing compounds. These deadly compounds have been named MX, which
for "unknown mutagen", and are similar to the already well-known and
easily detected cancer causing THMs (trihalomethanes).
The Japanese scientists specifically mentioned that their studies
that MX is created by the reaction of chlorine with natural organic
phytochemicals such as catechins, which are contained in tea, and
flavonoids which are found in fruit. Since Japan has an extremely high
consumption of tea, fruits, and soy products, it is easy to see how
amounts of residues from these foods would end up in their wastewater
treatment and water recycling systems.
Earlier studies by scientists in Finland in 1997 determined that MX is
times more deadly than other known toxic byproducts of chlorination,
was shown in laboratory studies to damage the thyroid gland as well as
cause cancerous tumors.
THMs are known to be created by the reaction of chlorine with humic and
fulvic acids, which are the final breakdown products of vegetation,
including decayed leaves and organic matter. Humic substances are the
as soil humus, of which the fulvic fraction is water soluble and
transported into streams and waterways, as well as utilized
Very recent scientific discoveries have identified and clarified the
composition of fulvic and humic acids as containing a significant
of nutritional phytochemical groups including hormones, sterols, fatty
acids, polyphenols, and ketones, which subgroups include but are not
limited to: flavins, flavonoids, flavones, tannins, catechins,
isoflavones, tocopherols, etc.
These compounds are some of the most valuable and promising anti-cancer
nutrients found in our foods and health supplements. Coenzyme Q10 is a
quinone, vitamin B-2 is a flavin, vitamin E is a tocopherol, citrus
bioflavonoids including hesperidin, quercetin, and rutin are all
flavonoids, green tea contains catechins, phenols, tannins, and
isoflavones. Potentially all of these substances, and many more, are
implicated by chlorination.
Amazingly, is has been discovered that these phytochemicals remain
concentrated, and intricately combined within humic substances; which
valuable remnants of natures protective substances contained within
fruits, flowers, pollen, nuts and seeds, as well as vegetative parts
including roots, stems, bark, and leaves. Even the plant nucleic acids,
RNA and DNA remain intact.
To comply with EPA rulings, water treatment plants have had to develop
special techniques to scrub the seemingly dubious organic residues from
water prior to treatment with chlorine. There is nothing wrong with the
organic substances themselves, it is chlorine that is at fault for
them into the deadly THM and MX cancer cocktail. Reality is that the
organic substances have been shown to be highly beneficial combined
pure drinking water in trace amounts.
The bottom line is this: when water treatment facilities remove these
substances, they are throwing the precious baby out with the bath
and the remnants that remain are turned into cancer causing agents by
chlorination. To make things worse, it is certain that the fresh plant
foods we eat similarly react with the chlorinated tap water we drink
our meals, creating toxins. This means that fresh fruits and
green salads, green tea, black tea, herb teas, soy products, vitamin
and various health supplements, and even some pharmaceutical drugs, all
can be implicated in combination with chlorinated water.
The deadly cancer causing agents which are produced are extremely toxic
infinitesimal amounts, so small and obscure that they are extremely
difficult to detect. Very little chlorine is required. When the
concentrations of phytochemicals are high, such as in concentrated
supplements, or even fruits and vegetables coming from more fertile
the deadly combination with chlorination intensifies.
It has been known by the water treatment and chemical industries for
years that chlorine reacts negatively with natural organic compounds.
These industries call these compounds DBPs (disinfection by-products)
which are known to cause cancer in populations whose drinking water
contains them. THM, the most commonly known DBP, is known to cause a
incidence of bladder cancer and also to cause spontaneous abortion of
The Environmental Protection Agency has continually tightened their
restrictions on THMs in drinking water, and even tighter restrictions
just around the bend. Yet it is interesting to note that the many
government agencies and chlorine industries have conveniently neglected
take a serious look at food, health supplement, and pharmaceutical drug
consumption, preparation, and production relating to use of chlorinated
There is good reason for the public to seriously examine and question
entire issue. Many years ago laws were passed making chlorination of
mandatory. Now, the chlorine industry and government agencies must
continue their existing policies, because if sudden or drastic changes
made, the legal liabilities would be staggering. Certainly some
or industry personnel have known or theorized about these problems and
have been covering them up for many years. However, if anyone were to
admit to it, the consequences could be disastrous. This predicament
make the tobacco industry scandal seem insignificant in comparison.
Another area needing thorough scrutiny relates to pharmaceutical drug
safety studies normally performed on animals in the laboratory. It
be reasonable to surmise that good laboratory practices and procedures
would require that such studies be performed using highly purified
drinking water for animals. It would be reasonable to believe that drug
companies would not take the chance of jeopardizing clinical studies
chlorinated tap water. Of course chlorinated tap water is a common
denominator within the human environment. Educating people to the
of chlorine would be admitting to knowledge of the problem, which could
invalidate past studies and certainly raise serious legal problems.
This whole chlorine issue should come as no real surprise to any
biochemist. During the last century, chlorine has been combined with
other normally safe organic substances to form some of the most
deadly toxins known, such as dioxin, DDT, PCBs, etc. The bottom line is
that the real culprit is chlorine, not the substances with which it
Although chlorine has essentially eliminated the risks of waterborne
diseases such as typhoid fever, cholera and dysentery, there are many
pathogens that are not controlled by chlorine. Other and better methods
water treatment exist. Many alternatives are already used throughout
world. Ever tightening EPA regulations have forced the water supply
industry in the USA to look into alternative methods for disinfecting
For years, environmentalists have battled the water treatment industry
large chemical companies in an effort to ban the use of chlorine in
drinking water. This ongoing battle has been a big source of revenue
both sides. As word of the problem spreads to the general public,
something might actually be done about it.
As this message spreads, it will no doubt shake the very foundations of
the chlorine and water treatment industries, let alone the government
agencies that are implicated along with them. There certainly should be
cause for serious alarm within the nutritional supplement and food
industries, as well as those segments of the medical industry that
awaken to the dilemma.
This message is of utmost importance to the general public, because
chlorine will one day, in the near future, be exposed as a major cause
contributor to cancer and degenerative disease. Chlorine will also be
found to be responsible for damaging the bodybs immune and hormonal
systems by mutating the food-based plant estrogens and phytochemicals
support those systems. A healthy immune system should be your first and
best line of defense against waterborne disease.
Merrily Smith, Publisher
The Holistic Helper
Dallas TX 75229-1836
Blessings of Beauty to You!
There have been a number of threads on the main board in relation to PMS, Estrogen Dominance and Progesterone Replacement. I have found Dr. Uzzi Reiss's book on Natural Hormone Balance to have some of the best information on estrogen and progesterone. Here are some excerpts from his writings:
Common Signs of Estrogen Deficiency:
1. Mental Fogginess
4. Minor Anxiety
5. Difficulty Falling Asleep
6. Hot Flashes & Temperature Swings
7. Day-long Fatigue
8. Sagging Breasts and loss of fullness
9. Episodes of rapid heatbeat
10. Headaches & Migraines
Common Signs of Estrogen Dominance:
1. Breast Tenderness or Pain and increase in Breast Size
2. Water Retention
3. Impatient, snappy behavior but with a clear mind
4. Pelvic cramps with or without uterine bleeding
Common Signs of Progesterone Deficiency:
1. Primary Amenorrhea - no period at all or Secondary Amenorrhea period with no ovulation
2. Oligomenorhea - period comes infrequently
3. Heavy and frequent periods.
4. Spotting a few days before the period
5. PMS symptoms
6. Cystic & lumpy breasts
7. Most cases of endometriosis, adenomyosis and fibroids.
8. Anxiety, irritability and nervousness. Difficulty sleeping and relaxing.
Estrogen and the Shape of Your Body:
A woman's shape and breast size during her younger years serve as a yardstick of estrogen production. Dr. Reiss uses 3 categories of body types.
Short, voluptuous and full-breasted. This woman produces more estrogen. She functions on a higher level of estrogen. The abundance of estrogen creates larger breasts, earlier bone closure and smaller stature. She does not tolerate increases in estrogen. She usually feels uncomfortable on a strong birth control pill or second trimester of pregnancy.
Tall, thin and relatively small breasted. Operates on much less estrogen and usually develops her period later. Grown taller because of less estrogen in the system to promote the calcification of bone tissue. Smaller breast size is a sign of relatively lower estrogen. May not feel the cyclic drop of estrogen. Generally feels wonderful during pregnancy or when taking birth control pills.
Normal. In betweeners.
Normal menstruation cycles and fewer pregnancies contribute to an accumulation of "aggressive" estrogens in the body.
1. Women produce "aggressive" estrogen every day of the month
2. They do not produce enough protective estriol
3. Progesterone, which protects the body and balances estrogen, is produced only during the 2 weeks of the month following ovulation.
4. The level of progesterone declines significantly after a woman reaches 35.
5. During perimenopause, progesterone is usually gone from the body.
6. The birth control pill raises the level of aggressive estrogen in women's bodies without estriol or bioidentical progesterone for protection.
7. Unlike any time before in history we are exposed to huge amounts of xenoestrogens found in plastics, chemical compounds.
One can use natural agents to eliminate excess estrogen. Once estrogen has performed its cellular mission, it is carried to the liver and deactivated and then transported to the gastrointestinal tract for evacuation. However, an enzyme in the intestines called beta-glucuronidase reactivated some of the estrogen, allowing it to be reabsorbed into the bloodstream. The recycling process produces about 30% of the available estrogen in the body. Dr. Reiss recommends eating a fibre rich diet and taking Calcium d-glucarate to prevent the recylcing of the outward bound estrogen.
Before the BTD, I always liked to cook for my family. When we first started this lifestyle though I started to hate it, but not because of the time involved in making meals for three different blood types (which didn’t help). It was because I resented the fact that we could hardly ever sit down to a meal again and all eat the same foods as a family.
To me, shared meals are an important part of relationships. I felt as if our family had literally been ripped apart because back then I viewed the idea of getting all three of us in the same place at the same time for a meal a trick in itself. Now that had been fractured into the various blood types food requirements.
I tried thinking of it as no different than when we had gone out for meals and each ordered something different...we were all in the same place sharing a meal. Why should the “fracturing” of the meal into the different blood types be any different? Well, no one said emotions were always logical.
As I have mentioned in past blogs, holidays were even worse because of the added sentiments that go with traditions. With holidays also come additional family members, which brings all four blood types into play for us. At least I had my explanation though as to why we could never agree on the same things to eat. So, what does that have to do with today?
All four* of us were sitting around yesterday afternoon eating a huge turkey bacon and spinach salad. It was just as it had been in the past - all of us together sharing a meal. I hadn’t even planned it to work for all of our blood types or for all of us to be together for the meal at the same time and place - it just happened to work out. It felt great. Then, this afternoon, we were all four together again, but none of us were eating the same thing...not even the two O’s. It still felt nice!
I have finally come to realize, in more than just my head, that it is the gathering of the people and their shared experiences that is the real joy and treasure. I feel really silly as I type this because it is so obvious...yet in all honesty, it really didn’t feel that way until this afternoon.
I realized years ago that holidays were what you made them otherwise they were no different a day than any other on the calendar. Now I realize that goes for every meal of every day and every day regardless of the season.
One other thing I would like to add since I have already mentioned holidays and special dates. February marks the anniversary of my adopting this lifestyle. Now, I actually crave veggies. I used to just get hungry. Now, I actually want veggies specifically! Every now and then, they would sound especially good, but now it is a regular daily occurrence. They don’t just sound good - it is an actual craving. If you had told me two years ago when I first started the BTD, that this was going to happen I would have thought you were crazy.
I also pass on chocolate more often than not. When I do have it, it is usually only a small portion. The thing that I find puzzling is that I did not make any effort or attempt to cut back on chocolate or sweets...it just happened on its own.
*If you have read my bio, you know that there are only three people listed. One of my son’s friends has come to live with us for an extended period. He is a type O like my husband.
It’s been 20 years ago today that I quit smoking for good. It was my thirty-eighth birthday and I was just barely pregnant with the twins. Once, several years earlier, I had quit for seven years. After I became a cocktail waitress I started smoking again in self defense. The smoke at the bar was really bothersome, so “knowing I could quit anytime I decided” I picked up that other “first” cigarette. Well, long story short, it was easier to quit at the bar than to give up cigarettes a second time.
When I quit for the final time it was 1985. There are still occasions when I really want a cigarette, but I know how much easier it is to get hooked again and have managed to persevere in my determination to never smoke again.
The temperature is -13 and should be on its way to warming up to the mid-teens to 20’s. The clouds should be returning and act as a blanket to keep some of the daytime warmth through the night. Right now, the sun is shining and the snow is glistening. The eagles are soaring and searching for food. The moose are basking in the sunlight. We should have about 8 hours 15 minutes of daylight today.
So, as I’ve been writing this, I’ve been watching the frost inside my windows melt in the sunlight as I’m sipping my latte freeze. I can have a latte freeze today. After all, I’m celebrating an anniversary and a birthday!
Mood: Bay rum cologne (kind of a pine/cedar/patchoulli scent...)
Well... I've gone and done it... I'm a friggin' Vegan... It just sort of happened I suppose. I had some (lots) turkey at Thanksgiving... Then again at Christmas.... And... That was that... No cheese, no yogurt, no meat, eggs, dairy.... Nothin...
I guess one wouldn't call me 100% vegan, as I use GHEE quite a bit (I LOVE IT!) But, one could also argue that there is no animal protien in GHEE... I also don't mind too terribly if there is a bit 'o' gelatin in an herbal supplement I'm taking... Although I would much rather it be a Vcap (made with vegetable cellulose) I mean... Why wouldn't you? Gelatin is an avoid for me...
Am I departing from the BTD? Hell NO! This is just something that I felt inclined to do... For now... I haven't made any commitment or promise to myself or anyone else... Just test driving it you could say... So far I like it!
Should everyone be a vegetarian/vegan? NO!
Will I always be a vegan/vegetarian? I dunno...
Should YOU be a vegan/vegetarian? You will be if you choose to be. Go with what you're inclined to do.
Honor your every decision my friends. Don't dally on regrets. Don't worry about the future.
Your power, the infinite power of creation, for you all create your own reality, lies in the NOW. Let your regrets and worries fill you, accept them, learn from them, and summarily let them go...
Fill your being with compassion, abundance, love, and happiness. It all good gang...
Stemaed vegetables with an insane amount of seasonings have been the standard fare. Lots of ghee, sesame oil, and olive oil to iad the digestion and provide healthy fats.
Broccoli, carrots, onions, celery, beet and beet greens, kale, mustard greens, leeks, etc.
Lots of miso, occasional servings of tofu and soymilk, occasional tempeh. Trying to stick to fermented soy these days.
Whole grains, sprouted wheat, oats, buckwheat groats, spelt bread, etc. (avoiding the yeast in breads and baked goods lately)
Lots of almonds/almond butter, walnuts, and peanuts/peanut butter, pumpkin seeds (pepitas) the occasional helping of macadamia nut butter, toasted pecans, etc.
Figs, pineapple, green apples, grapefruit and pommelos, lemons and limes, prunes, blueberries, cranberries, etc.
So that's a lot of what I've been eating... I still get the occasional nut or carb binges... Gotta be some self defeating mechanism I've built in to myself... Oh yeah... WINE! Too much red wine as of late...
I'll ahve to iron out these wrinkles...
I seem to do best on high veg/high fat & oil/low grain/low nut & seed days... Why I don't do every day like that is quite beyond me... Hedonism? Gluttony? Chemical imbalance? Malabsorption? Answer: All of the above. I'll fix it though
I'm gonna end it here as I'm tired and you're bored... he he. More later friends. Be well~
NO SPELL CHECK FOR YOU! Good to be back bloggin'
Today was another sunny, cold, and beautiful day. It was -24 degrees F when I got up this morning and drove my son to work shortly thereafter. The car wasn’t real happy about starting, either. By early afternoon it had warmed to 3 degrees above zero and with the sun shining, it actually felt pretty good. Currently it is -12. They forecast that by tomorrow afternoon we will have temperatures near 20 degrees on the plus side of zero! Our area had 8 hours and 10 minutes of daylight today and should get another 5 minutes more tomorrow. There was a 95 degree temperature variation in the state today with a low of -54 and a high of 41.
We stopped at our favorite restaurant at the airport this morning for a wonderful breakfast and good conversation. The temperature warmed as we were there, which made running errands afterwards much more pleasant. We had a good view of two of our active volcanoes. The sun was shining on the mountains and they looked very majestic. Mt. Spurr has been quite rumbly for the past several months. There are 15-20 small earthquakes beneath her every day. If she blows again, we’ll probably get dumped on with the volcanic ash again. It stinks like rotten eggs and makes a mess of everything. Volcanic ash does not reflect light. It is dark and everything around it is also dark.
The ground buffalo I bought yesterday became meatloaf for dinner tonight. It was quite tasty. To go along with it we had sliced sweet potatoes baked and sweetened with molasses and steamed fresh asparagus with a drizzling of butter and a little sea salt.
The asparagus was on sale from $3.99 per pound to just $1.99 a pound! The buffalo was $5.98 a pound. And the sweet potatoes were $1.49 per pound.
OK! The car is fixed... The computer is fixed... And... I can get back to Bloggin'! So sorry for the delay... But I'm back! 'Twer it not for my being nearly late for work I'd shell out a healthy one right now, but alas, duty calls! Back soon gang. Hang tight and be well~
There is a small, friendly, family diner at our local airport. The food is great, freshly made and menu substitutions are no problem. Nearly every meal I order is customized to some extent. I don’t have to worry about “bad” food items and avoids when I dine there because I design my own meal. Today I ate a small steak, two poached eggs, rye toast and a salad. Then I drank a nice herbal tea.
The husband and wife team are well aware of food allergies and diet restrictions. She has severe celiac responses to all gluten containing foods. He is an excellent cook. Even the salads are made with a variety of salad greens and other fresh ingredients. We are very fortunate to have this wholesome and adaptive place to drink tea or have a complete meal.
Although this is not a BTD restaurant, the accommodations in food selection doesn’t prevent me from enjoying a meal out. Wouldn’t it be nice if this was a common situation?
Guess I’m mostly back from the crud. Whatever this ‘bug’ is, it is almost epidemic in our area. I saw my naturopath yesterday and even he has been suffering with it. He gave me an IV of vitamins and other goodies that really seemed to make a difference! He’s also been using that same concoction. Many people we know have pneumonia, bronchitis, severe sinus congestion, and so on. I’m glad the BTD, noni, and GSE have helped keep this from getting too bad to begin with and then having the IV should hopefully finish it off.
But I don't have time to write it all now. There has been so much wonderful food in the last five days that I just don't have the time to share it all! Some very good stories, too. Cross country skiing, Nepalise dining. Hot tubbing. Driving through beautiful snow-covered hills.
Till I get the time, happy reading.
Mood: Ahhhhh....Why am I procrastinating my lesson plan?
Music: Noise of new air purifier - friedrich C-90A - yummy.....
It's been far too long....too much happening & husband is back to PC games instead of Xbox - oh no....looks like I'm going to have to arrange some sort of scheduale b/c not blogging for this long is driving me nuts!!! So much happened....had such a good weekend......where to start....well,..........
I've come to the conclusion that although I listen to member supported radio stations, try not to listen to what big media or the President tells me & love myself & my neighbors for who we are......I'm still a shallow person. Sometimes......I can't help it. I know most people will say "what the h*** are YOU worried about" but I am.....swimsuit season is coming up & I have gained weight. Not what I was when I started the diet but almost. I've been BTDing this whole time but slowly, more AVOIDS have been creeping into my diet. & I do notice when I have them. I'm gassier. My lemon still does wonders but this slow build up of vinegar here, a dorito there, IS adding up. I should be fine with it since for 80% of the time, I'm eating healthier that I was at this time last year but.....let's face it. I'm shallow sometimes. I was brought up with a certain parent that always wanted me to look my best & they were raised in a period of our American history where looks for a woman were everything. So, it rubbed off on me. And society & High School were no help either. Funny how I'm more critical of myself than other people though......good thing I don't watch those annoying commercials anymore......but.....I'm getting off subject.
So.......................the goal? Eat more beneficials!!! Fix more food at home! Stay away from Taco Bell & school lunches!!!! These are my February Resolutions!!! Who needs New Year's Resolutions - everyone's forgotten them already by now anyways. These "February Resolutions" are going to stick! I'm going to give in to my shallow inner workings b/c I know that BTD will actually make me healthier in the process of appeasing my dementia for losing 2 inches off my belly :-D
*Things for AB's losing weight to concentrate on:
Fish like tuna & salmon
green veggies like collards & broccoli
dark chocolate only!!! (No more pepperidge farm cookies!!!)
*Things for AB's losing weight to avoid:
wheat (even though it's a neutral, it adds to the inches)
Corn (not even 1 tortillia chip!!!)
chicken (haven't had that in ages)
Pepperidge farm cookies (Damn you, Sausalito!!!)
If you all still like me, even though I'm not the renegade hippie you thought I was, I will write another blog as soon as I can tear Carlos away from his Ultima Online :-D Happy eating! Remember, bathing suits aren't everything! People will love you for who you are, not how you look.......so why am I not taking my own advice?!?!!?!?! Ahhhh - Contradictions!!! The pain in my brain! ;->