Nesting and how there’s more to life than food

When I went home last night I realized that I hadn’t taken anything out of the fridge for dinner, I didn’t care about dinner and I wanted to go shopping.  I watched a pvr’d version of Dr. Phil while laying on the sofa feeling sorry for myself and then I put some clothes on and headed out to Costco.
On the way out the door I ran into the neighbor that lives across the hall and has actually seen my cat because one of the days that the kitty was really sick, he escaped out into the hallway.  On that day, neighbor told me that he had a kitty that looked JUST like Charlie Fluffypants but that his Tigger had passed in March.  So sad!  So when I saw him in the laundry room on my way out the door I took a deep breath and asked him if he was going to be around for Christmas because Mr. Fluffypants needed a babysitter.  He was fantastic and said that yes he was probably going to be around but that if he wasn’t for a day, Don, our upstairs neighbor and Neil (across the hall neighbor)’s best friend would be home and between them, they’d make sure my furbaby was taken care of!  He also exclaimed how cute he thought Charlie was and I was sold that it was the best plan to keep Charlie at home and let the neighbors fuss over him for a few days.
Anyway, once I was done my Costco trip in which I bought Shrimp Cocktail, ground beef to make curried meatballs and Mexican Pasta Sauce and chicken wings to make… well, chicken wings (which I think should be a food group unto itself and one of my FAVORITE  things to eat ever!), I came home.
I sat on the sofa for the remainder of the evening and worked through my Goals book.  If you don’t know, every year I write down my goals in categories of Family, Friends, Relationships, Financial, Education, Health and Beauty, Home and Outrageous.  Usually I go through the list quarterly to see how I’m doing but I was a bit busy this year and until last night had completely forgotten that I’d even done it.
I crossed off a LOT of things… Things like ‘spend a week with Dad’… I crossed that off because even tho it hasn’t happened yet, the plane ticket is booked.  Things like ‘Pay Tax Arrears by end of year’, ‘move to a 2 bedroom apartment’, …  There are obviously a lot of things still left on the list and some which it is clear won’t be completed by the end of the year.  And that is OK.  Some will be carried forward to next year, some will be evaluated for usefullness based on what I feel is going on next year and some will be ditched because they’re either no longer a priority or they’ve changed, or they don’t count now because something has changed (like buy a new bbq for bunker… no more bunker, no need for bbq).
The second thing I did with that Goal book was to make a second section at the end of every category labelled Oct-Dec.  I took the goals I thought I could complete or the ones I wanted to focus on in the last quarter of the year and re-wrote them under that heading.  I also added new ones or modified existing ones.  That’s the nice thing about goals… you can change them as your life changes.
When I was done I put my pen down and my book down and went to bed… and as I was getting comfy and cozy I realized that not a single one of those goals and thoughts had to do with food.
Food has gotten the better of me in the past and it was well on it’s way to getting the better of me just recently.  Food, in my opinion, is to nourish your body.  People and goals and sunshine and kittens and puppies nourish your soul.  That’s the way it is for me… and from now until December, my one and only food related goal will be to remember this.

Assess… and Re-assess

Thank you to both my sister and my friend for the nice comments last night… I didn’t eat a single one of those things… in fact I ate a roasted chicken breast with sundried tomatoes on it over a salad of mixed greens and a bit of avocado, tomato and mushrooms.
Then I took two Advil Cold and Sinus and told the cat ‘lets go lay on the bed for a minute until mommy’s headache goes away’. Well, two guesses how that turned out!
I think I’ve figured out what the problem is… or what A problem is.
I’m bored.  I’ve never been a good cook or chef altho I can whip up yummy things to eat.  I’m not imaginative or inspired in the kitchen… Pattypan squashes stuffed with bacon and spinach? Sounds divine… probably wouldn’t make it.
Butter Chicken over Spagetti squash?  LOOKS divine and yet, there’s a good chance I’m not making that either… altho it has a better chance cause it’s two of my favorite foods.
I’m bored of putting stuff on salad… I’m bored of trying to think up things to make for dinner… I’m bored of smoothies for breakfast… altho every morning they are my favorite thing, I’m bored of making them and buying the ingredients for them and thinking about them.
I know what I need to do… I need to nest… I need to pull out the crockpot and make things… Mexican Pasta Sauce (it’s basically chili without the beans), chunky pasta sauce for pouring over squash.  Cabbage roll soup and Curry Chicken Soup.
I need to be able to pull something out of the freezer and not have to think about it.  I want to go back to a time when I didn’t constantly think about food.  That was one of the biggest reasons why I didn’t want to join the Zone or Weight Watchers… I don’t like to be and don’t want to be obsessed with food…even so far as not wanting to have to ‘dream up’ dinner.
The last sentance in my last post was And I want to not care when I eat it….
I do not want to care… Not in the way that I don’t care what I eat and how I feel… just that I don’t want to give food so much attention.  Giving it this much attention for me gives it an awful lot of power… and that power turns into obsession…
So, now that I know what A PART of the problem is, how do I fix it?
I go back to that which I know… if food is easy, I stop caring about it in an active way.  A bagel and cheddar cheese was the easiest meal I ever made.  Not the best or most healthy, but I knew what I was having when I was on the bus on the way home, I knew it took little effort, it tasted good and when I was done, I was done.  I believe I should be able to translate those requirements to actual food and putting a bunch of stuff in the freezer will be very helpful.
I also think that even with all the stuff in the freezer, I’m going to start making a weekly meal plan. That way I only need to think about food the one time.
I hope this helps… any suggestions in this vein of not wanting to have to think about food are welcome!
And I won’t be eating cupcakes anytime soon… I promise!

Give me a CUPCAKE!

You know what I want to do?
I want to go to Cupcakes and buy two dozen cupcakes and eat them all.  I want to go to McDonalds and eat one of everything and five orders of french fries…
Croissants, donuts, sandwiches…  Tuna Noodle Casserole, Breaded Lemon Chicken and a giant pie, no cake… NO BOTH! for dessert… and by dessert, I mean whatever I eat right before I eat grilled cheese sandwiches and oreos until I puke…
What the fuck is wrong with me?
I’m not going to do any of this because it’s not healthy, it’s not reasonable and I don’t have that much money…
I’m a responsible adult that knows that all of those things, in such great quantity and especially TOGETHER are going to make me feel like a big gigantic piece of crap.
Part of me doesn’t care.  Part of me thinks that I have been doing this grain/lentil free thing for almost two months and I’ve seen very little results except for an uptick in my awesome cooking abilities and a downtick in upset stomach and sudden poo-explosions…
I want cupcakes and cream cheese icing.  And I want to not care when I eat it….

Whole(y) Cow!

Are you still doing your silly ‘grain free thingy’
That was a question that I was asked today.  It was because the person asking wanted to share a pastry treat with me but the over all theme of people that are NOT doing it is that it’s ‘silly’ and that ‘grains are good for you’.
It stands to reason… Canada’s Food Guide suggests that you eat 6-7 servings of grains a day.  What’s a serving?  Glad you asked.  It’s 1 cup of brown rice.  So they’re suggesting that you eat SEVEN CUPS of rice a day.
Okay… let’s just at least check and see what they recommend for protien… being someone that has had great success on The Zone (similar to versions of South Beach), I know that carbs, fat and protien should be eaten in a balanced ratio.
Canada Food Guide suggests that you eat 2 servings of protien a day… that means that one of your meals and all of your snacks (if you snack) are protein free… I guess that makes sense because you’ve got seven cups of rice to eat!
It’s really unfortunate that a federally funded program such as Health Canada has changed so little in the last decades… No allowance seems to have been given for any other WOE (way of eating) other than filliing up on simple carbs.
What’s worse is that the food guide RECOMMENDS you eat soy… you can go hang with your friend Google for a while to see just why that’s a terrible TERRIBLE recommendation.
Also on the ‘tips’ is ‘use soft margarine’.  Uh, that stuff is one molecular structure away from being plastic.  It’s terrible for you… the softer it is, the more crap they put in it… it also recommends that you steer away from ‘butter’. 
Also in ‘tips’… Have meat alternatives such as beans, lentils and tofu often’.  OMG, you get two measly servings of meat a day and they want you to substitute often for carbs??  That’s insane… INSANE!
So while it’s still annoying and offensive to be judged for your food choices, it’s not exactly surprising when the common sentiment is that it’s heart healthy and responsible to consume grains and grain by products.
That being said, I have had great success being grain free.  These people see only the way I look and not how I feel.  Which again, is annoying but understandable.
So I know that the reaction to my new plan of joining my friend Tara on the Whole30 plan is going to get even more dirty looks.
In order to do it, I shouldn’t have to change what I do too much… no dairy, which isn’t that big of a deal… coconut milk in coffee works and I don’t NEED to eat cheese and ice cream.
No alcohol… again, not much of a problem… patio season is over (said as I type with stone cold fingers) and I’ve often gone months between moments of drinking.
No grains or legumes… already doing that…. even tho I write forlourn love letters to peanut butter on a pretty consistent basis…
No potatoes… no problem.. I always forget about potatoes anyway so 30 days isn’t a killer
No artificial anything … no problem… I’ve grown quite attached to food that doesn’t have an arms length of ‘ingredients’…
30 days… Tara is starting on the 16th and I think that’s reasonable for me too.  30 days brings me to October 16, which works fine because my dinner party is on Oct 20th, altho since it’s MY dinner party, it shoudln’t matter one iota… Roasted pork with home made ceaser salad and my sister’s ‘crack’ crackers with pate (will check the ingredients on that) sounds pretty dang yummy and completely made of whole foods… 
Go to Whole9 if you’re interested in joining or even just reading about it…

I’ve Fall(en)

I think the weather has officially turned and is heading in the direction of Fall.  This makes me VERY happy.  Don’t get me wrong, I do like Summer but I feel like Summer has all these expectations that Fall doesn’t have.
In Summer you can’t have a lazy day on the weekend because it’s ‘too nice out’…Summer expects constant activity, late nights, many many bottles of chilled wine, beaches and laying out.  Summer expects bbq’s and picnics and every manner of social life.  That’s not to say that I don’t like these things, but the expectations of Summer can get onerous…
Fall is layed back.  Fall expects you to relax.  Fall expects cool walks and bags of apples.  It expects dusted off crockpots and hearty warm meals.  It gives a few very warm days to remind you of Summer but without the expectation of removing almost all your clothes and laying out.  It expects some lazy days in preparation for hibernation.  Fall is a chilled out, calmed down version of Summer.  I feel like it’s the only season that only wants whatever is best for your mental health.  Winter is harsh and while it has few expectations, it is a slave driver… it’s a beast that pushes your limits.  Spring has even higher expectations than Summer.  After surviving the abuse of Winter, Spring expects you to come out of hibernation a new and refreshed being… and expects you to worship it’s warmer weather and summer-like moments more than Summer.
That being said, I’m quite ready to let myself get enveloped in Fall.  For its gorgeous colors to inspire me and calm me.  To walk in it’s crisp air and indulge in the bounty of the harvest!  I. CAN’T. WAIT!
I’m madly knitting my Winter 12/13 collection of accessories to keep me warm in the winter… I’ve got three hats and another one waiting in the wings.  Three shawl/cowls and a pair of elbow length alpaca gloves.  Just taking a time out from my collection to knit a hat for a friend… I don’t think I’ve actually given away any knit wear this year yet, so it’s about time… the year is almost up.  I’m almost thinking also of pulling out all my old winter wear that I’ve knit and see if any of it can be sold… or given away maybe.  It’s silly to hold on to so many hats when every year I make more…