Since my last batch of exams, I have been eating all crap, all the time. Fast food & frozen packaged cardboard garbage. I’ve gained back the few pounds I had lost, and now I frequently wake up in the middle of the night worrying about the harm I’ve done to my body.
The thought of adding another duty to my days right now seems impossible, but my diet must change. So I’m determined to find simple solutions.
I’m going to put away all of the recipes and cookbooks that perpetually litter up the kitchen counter. I’m going to commit to grocery shopping ONCE per week. I’m going to recruit Marty to use that big shiny barbecue often. And I’m only going to prepare meals that require 15 mins of prep or less.
And on nights when all else fails, I have our new neighbour, Dinner Liberty, to fall back on. They offer complete healthy meals for $5 per person, and God bless ‘em – they set up shop four doors down from me. What luck for us both – I’ll probably be their #1 customer until August, and they may well postpone my first angioplasty!
I am back :o)
I hardly left, I know – I’ve been lurking around reading all you amazing, wonderful folks for the the last three weeks that I claimed to be taking a break, but over the last few days it’s become apparent that I can be silent among you no longer! Too many funny, insightful, educational and inspirational posts to suppress even one more cheer or remark.
Besides, I’m feeling MUCH better. I’ve dealt with some stuff, re-grouped, and now (besides a pesky new chest cold) I’m feeling happy and strong and healthy. Onward and upward then.
My goals list needs an overhaul, and I’m quite behind in my school work, so I definitely have some things to address, but I’ll get to everything as I can. Along the way, it’s so great to be back among the joyful, the real, the brilliant 43Ters what I love :o)
Just wanted to let you all know that I’m taking a little break from 43T for a while. I haven’t been feeling very well lately, haven’t been getting good sleep for several weeks now.
I need to focus on taking care of myself, and when possible, keeping up with school and work.
But I’ll be back as soon as possible. Hugs to all who’ll have ‘em.
Well, it was a looong awaited project, but I used some of my holiday time, and a firm hand, to prune my mountain of recipes down to a more user-friendly, orderly, underwhelming selection of tried-n-trues. I am pleased as punch! I threw away (into the blue box, of course) well over two-thirds of my collection.
I feel lighter, and far less daunted by the thought of flipping through to plan meals and grocery lists. In this case, less IS more!
I was back to making dinner regularly when we first started getting the organics delivered, but then last week M & I both fell right off the rails and ate junk food for almost every meal! But over this weekend, because I was on my own, I prepared wholesome, tasty, SIMPLE meals for every meal. I don’t think I spent more than 30 minutes actively preparing anything, yet every meal was a fabulous treat!
This is key to my health. I have to plan simple meals so that when it’s late in the afternoon and I’m tired and lazy, or busy and distracted, I can easily pull together something nourishing. Just gotta keep it simple!
With Marty’s birthday now over, I have a deep desire to simplify the special events in our lives. That’s not to say that I want to ignore them or stop celebrating, but that I want to enrich them, perhaps by incorporating some traditional food or ritual, and de-emphasize the gift giving. Especially Christmas. I have to say, as I grow older I feel less and less like engaging in all the hype of gift giving. I resent how busy the stores are, I hate the pressure of thinking of “perfect” gifts for everyone, and of course, I never seem to be in any financial position to do what I WANT to do. The end result is that I usually feel guilty for receiving more than I give, mad at myself for wracking up more consumer debt, and exhausted from all the expectation and effort that goes in to creating “Christmas feeling”.
This year, I am already advocating for a minimum of gift giving – or at least, a minimum of consumerism. The ALL-TIME BEST experience I had Christmas shopping was last year, when I resolved to do as much of it as possible online. What a relief that was!! Not only did it free up a lot of time for me, but that in turn seemed to buoy my Christmas spirit because I wasn’t all stressed out with a gazillion things to do!
So I’m hoping to get M & my family & friends on board – to find ways to celebrate the holiday together more simply. A festive pot luck or cooperative dinner. Maybe a wine tasting party so that everyone “gifts” one bottle and we share all of them together. Home-made gifts. Gifts of donation.
For Christmas and ALL the special occasions & events throughout the year, I want to focus on spending time with loved ones; giving personal, thoughtful, simple gifts; and getting in touch what the holiday means to me.
What could be simpler than to shed all that is superfluous in an effort to save money, and just get back to basics?
- simplify the grocery list by sticking to fresh local in-season produce and staying out of the meat aisle
- simplify meal prep with soups (stretch that grocery dollar) and hearty bean and grain salads that can feed us for a couple days
- simplify leisure time by reading books I already have (another 43T goal), lounging in the hammock, going for a walk or jog, tending the garden, or puzzling through my backlog of sudokus
- simplify my schedule by going out to fewer ball games (sorry Perc, but you KNOW it’s an expensive place to play :+)
- simplify my goals list by using this time of self-imposed poverty to get some stuff done around the house!
I’ve mentioned in other posts that I have binder upon binder of recipes, most of which I haven’t ever tried because I get overwhelmed by the choice when I go to flip through even one of these binders. I’d like to prune (read: hack) away a lot of those recipes to just the ones that I’m reasonably likely to make one day.
And, I’ve mentioned in other posts that I would like to try incorportating more 100-mile-ingredients into my/our diet.
And, I’ve mentioned in other posts that I’d like to unleash my creativity…
So I’m now wondering if the SIMPLEST approach toward all three of these goals is to ditch my recipes, buy local ingredients when they’re available, and “approach … cooking with reckless abandon”!
In the ‘reader to reader’ section of the May 2007 Body & Soul magazine, a woman from Portland, Oregon, wrote in to answer the question “what did you learn from your mother?”. Her answer describes a life I so admire:
“When she and my dad moved to the West Coast, she planted two big gardens and harvested a huge orchard. We raised all of our own beef and chicken, and we went on weekend outings to clam, crab and fish for food. We canned our vegetables and ate homemade bread. Mom made many of our clothes and taught us to do the same. We recycled water from the washing machine for use in the garden, composted, and gave thanks for our meals. She knew the value of living close to the earth and without waste. My mom chose this lifestyle because it felt true and right for our family …”
I like the idea of being so self-reliant, such a large part of own my food production, and respectful of the earth that sustains me. While there is obviously a lot of hard work involved in such a lifestyle, there is a wholesome simplicity to it that appeals to me.
I’m quite prone to over-extending and overwhelming myself. Lately I’ve been making bold (for me) decisions that have really paid off. Stupid things, sure, but perhaps they’ll all add up!
Last week, I committed to just empty my Bulk mail folder without first skimming through it ‘just in case’ something important slipped in there. Checking it over did not take up a lot of time in my life, but it was yet another thing to do, so I made the decision in the spirit of simplifying, and I gotta say, I’m so glad! Now I’ve got my eyes wide open for habits I can ditch without consequence!!