Dear 43 Things Users,

10 years after introducing 43 Things to the world, we have decided we have met our last goal: completing the incredible experience that has been 43 Things. Please join us in giving one last cheer to all the folks who have shared their goals with the world, as well as all the people who have worked at The Robot Co-op to build this incredible website. We won a Webby Award, published a book, and brought happiness to a lot of people.

Starting today, 43 Things users can export their goals and entries from the site. Starting August 15, we will make the site “read only”. 43 Things users will still be able to view the site and export their content, but we won’t be taking any new content from users. We hope to leave the site up for folks to see and download their content until the end of the year. Ending on New Year’s Eve takes us full circle.

It has been a long ride (one of our original goals was to "build a company that lasts at least 2 years” - we beat that one!) While we wish the site could live on, it has suffered from a number of challenges - changes in how people use the site, the advertising industry, and how search engines view the site. We wish the outcome was different – but we’ve always been realistic about when our goals are met and when they aren't.

As of today, you will be able to download your goals and entries. See more about that on the FAQ page. Thanks for 10 great years of goal-setting and achieving.

- The Robots.

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Keep a Working Pantry (read all 19 entries…)
green beans, and chicken

Green beans were $1.28/lb fresh, and whole chicken was $.99/lb, so I bought lots. I intend to spend a day canning each of these foods either Friday or Saturday.

Friday I wanted to go to the fair, though. I’d like to look around at everyone else’s exhibits of home canning and quilting and see animals etc. I’m torn between the desire to do both of these things on Friday. Obviously I want to get to can my food while it’s fresh, but Friday I can get into the fair for only a dollar if I go before noon. I guess I’ll have to just see how I feel tomorrow to know which impulse will win out.

Eat like a caveman (read all 10 entries…)
Lunch at Denny's

I picked my son up from the airport today, so naturally we stopped at Denny’s for lunch afterwards. (I’m SO glad he’s home!!)

I ordered the country fried steak. I scraped off the floury white gravy, ignored the bread roll entirely, and ordered green beans and corn as side dishes instead of potatoes. Water to drink, of course.

I felt I’d done pretty good. There was crispy breading on the steaks, and I know sweet corn is a high-carb vegetable, but I thought all together it was a pretty decent choice and really quite moderate.

Yet tonight my legs have swelled up again. They were better this morning. I thought I did so well today. I don’t know what is wrong. Maybe even just the corn and breading was enough to affect me? Or maybe it just has something to do with gravity and sitting all day driving or whatever.

Tomorrow I will have to be even more diligent.

Eat like a caveman (read all 10 entries…)

Two eggs, over easy, and a mountain of sauteed mushrooms and onions, cooked in ghee. The eggs were perfect, with slightly crisped edges and perfectly thickened yet runny yolks. The mushrooms were steamed under a lid to be cooked thoroughly yet not browned. Since I can’t ever get everything ready at the same time, I cooked and served these things as two separate courses.

No toast, because that would be the bad part, because wheat (to me) is evil. I did indulge in one dried apricot and one date as my breakfast “dessert”. I still taste its sweetness on my tongue. I hope it isn’t a bad indulgence. I checked the glycemic index last night and they said dates were only a 42. 50 is table sugar. 75 is bread. (YIKES!) Most vegetables fall in the 30-40 range.

An hour later I still feel delightfully full and satisfied. No sugar rush. No dizzyness or loopiness. No manic joy. Just stable satiation. It’s nice!

Mushrooms are a special favorite of mine. I love their meaty texture and earthy (yet somehow slightly sweet) flavors. Every time I eat mushrooms I feel like I’m indulging in a sacred rite. I have no idea if they’re good for me particularly, but they seem almost mythological somehow. They’re from a time before the beginning of mammals. They’re more ancient than the dinosaurs. Once mushrooms grew as tall as trees. Now they are my breakfast. I feel honored.

Grow $150/mo worth of vegetables (read all 14 entries…)
garden update

The spinach in my garden was planted too late, of course. The weather turned warm and it started bolting before the third set of leaves came in. Besides, those tiny bugs were still out there, and made me not want to go near for fear they’d get on me.

The peas came up, and are now flowering. I haven’t been faithful about watering, but they seem green and alive anyway. Not thriving, probably for the same reason as the spinach. It’s a cold-weather crop being forced to live in summertime.

Nobody has given me any grief about having my planting box there. The gardeners sprayed Round-Up around the base if it, just to keep the grass from growing up the sides. That makes me sad both because I hate Round-Up and because it means now if I ever AM forced to move the box there will be a big dead ring of poison where the grass will not want to re-grow. Where my garden was the grass may be killed, but at least it would re-grow easily if reseeded. It’d probably be even healthier than the surrounding grass, what with the encouragement of earthworms, etc. to lighten the soil.

I can’t say I’m thrilled to pieces with the production of the garden, but to be honest I guess I am thrilled with whatever I can grow at all. It is normal for a heavy carbonaceous mulch like that to take a long time to break down, like six months to a year. I’ll keep feeding it all winter with as much nitrogen as I can get, from places like my fish tank, etc. That should encourage faster breakdown of the carbon and transformation into rich compost.

The end of August approaches. It is time to set in cool-weather crops. Maybe I’ll try the peas again, and also swiss chard. My chard didn’t really respond the first time. Maybe it’ll be happier this time around.

Eat like a caveman (read all 10 entries…)
Going Paleo

Much as I hate to jump on another “diet fad” all the information I’m seeing lately, and everything I can add up from a lifetime of trying many different styles of eating all seems to point in this direction.

If someone 10,000 years ago would recognize a food and be able to cook it themselves, it’s safe. If it’s processed or full of refined starch or sugar or vegetable oil, it isn’t safe. This includes potatoes, especially Idaho Russets, because they are a variety only developed in the past 100 years or so. Maybe some day I’ll be able to find a type of potato that isn’t high-glycemic index, but until then I must avoid them.

There is some talk that cavemen drank beer or other fermented beverages, but I hate alcohol so I won’t go there. But I will eat pickled or fermented foods like sauerkraut etc.

I don’t know yet whether it’s possible I’ll find a variety of wheat or grain (probably whole-grain, never refined) that I’ll be able to tolerate. It has to do with the glycemic load. If it spikes my blood sugar, it’s bad for me.

I have a lot of research to do.

Eat like a caveman (read all 10 entries…)
Realizing I'm an Addict

I just found this YouTube channel, and it is full of speakers and information that directly connects with my situation.

This segment in particular hits home: Jaqueline Eberstien talks about carbohydrate addiction. In it she discusses how the symptoms of carbohydrate intolerance/addiction is not at all unlike the symptoms of any other addiction, even ones as serious as drugs and alcohol.

It can be difficult to take carb addiction seriously, because most people seem to be able to handle a certain amount of sugar or starch in their diet with no problem. It doesn’t make them crazy. It doesn’t make them miss work or have hangovers or beat their spouse. But then, many people can handle alcohol or even drugs in a “moderate” way and not have horrible behaviors. That doesn’t mean those substances are “harmless”. It just means some of us are predisposed to be more vulnerable to their influence.

Carbohydrates have been shown to trigger the same dopamine receptors as tobacco, alcohol or cocaine. People trying to break addiction to one of these substances will often become reliant on others, to try to boost dopamine in the brain, to try to feel ‘normal’.

After a few days the physical withdrawal symptoms from carb addiction will fade, but the psychological or social pressures may continue much longer.

Symptoms of Carb (or any) Addiction
  • greater amounts of substance are necessary to achieve same effects
  • addicts are driven to repeat addictive behaviors to avoid withdrawal
  • addict feels helpless to stop at “just a little” of the substance
  • pre-frontal cortex may become damaged to where judgement is impaired, so that damaging behaviors are not handled appropriately
  • preoccupation with getting the trigger substance
  • substance is indulged in secret
  • isolating behaviors to indulge in substance
  • repeated unsuccessful attempts to moderate intake
  • continual attraction to substance even in the face of negative consequences
  • withdrawal symptoms temporarily abate after indulgence in substance
  • withdrawal symptoms may include fatigue, irritability, faintness, weakness, palpitations, headache, cold sweats, mental cloudiness, and depression

I can relate to nearly every one of the points listed above. I thought my intake of carbs was under control when I discovered how much better I felt without them (leg swelling reduced), but in the past few days I’ve indulged in lots of sugar with my canned cherries or jams or even dried fruits I bought. My legs are swollen again today, though not as bad as they were.

So today I’m back on the wagon. Back onto eating nothing but my soup and avoiding all carbs. I’m going to have to research this more to find ways to live with this addiction and not let it control me. I know it will kill me if I don’t master it.

Sugar for me isn’t like alcohol to a normal person, it is like alcohol to a drunk. I can’t have “some”. Having “some” always means having “some more” until I’m suffering again. I need to stop indulging altogether. I need a new way of eating.

Bleah. Not looking forward to it. Feels like it will be dull and unhappy. But having a body that functions well will be good. I’ll need to focus on that joy and not coddle my addiction’s whining.

clean for 30 minutes for 30 days (read all 13 entries…)
a typical day today

Cleaning. yeah. I remember that.

I do clean, but not steadily. I think about this goal every morning when I clean out the dishwasher, but after that short chore I feel the urge to move on to other more important things like cooking. So each morning I clean a bit, but I’m not really “keeping” things clean.

Right now the kitchen is cluttered to the point it’s getting hard to cook in. I need at least the stove, sink, and one or two counters clean to cook comfortably, so generally I always clean to that level each day just before I start cooking.

I try to clean as I cook, to keep my working space efficient. But I can’t seem to maintain the gumption after I’m all done cooking. Then the eating dishes come out and pile up all day long as we have helping after helping of whatever I fixed. That’s why the counters get so cluttered up so fast.

My daughter is cleaning the kitchen now. I just polled her and she agreed she’s cleaning about the same as me, to a degree of cleanliness where she feels ready to cook. She’s making burritos. :)

I’m so excited I don’t have to cook tonight. I’m feeling tired today and mopey, like my head is a foot thick and top-heavy. It will be nice to eat dinner someone else prepared.

I did get laundry going today. Three loads. And one of them is already folded, if not put away.

I also dragged out my dehydrator and am experimenting with a new recipe to make “tomato figs”. Apparently if you halve paste tomatoes and cook them in a lot of sugar, and then dehydrate them to a leathery stage, they taste like dried figs or dates. I’ve been told they’re very good, so I’m testing a batch. It’ll be interesting to have something around that is out of the ordinary.

Also, I cleared out two boxes from my junk room, and discussed with my daughter what our plan is going to be to handle the rest. (It involves buying a lot of shelves for the office and sewing areas before we really have a shot at success.)

So even though I’m dopey, I have worked. Just not steadily, and not so’s you’d notice my house was actually clean if you visited today.

But I’d feed you chicken soup or burritos or tomato figs, and you’d shut up and be happy you were getting fed. So there. :P


Keep a Working Pantry (read all 19 entries…)
14 new jars done!

Three are cherry juice, eleven are canned whole cherries. The pitter I bought works, though it is disappointing. Its handle came broken. But I didn’t have time or energy to return it and get a replacement, so I’ve been making do. The machine is also a bit annoying because the cherries often get stuck in the mechanism and I generally have to clear them by hand instead of just running them through without a hitch. Still, it is much faster than cutting each cherry with a knife. I could never have finished so many quarts alone in one day.

I do believe I was right about the vodka. The flavor of this batch of cherries is somehow more complex and interesting, without tasting at all like alcohol. I’d know if it did, because I’m very sensitive to an “alcoholy” taste. Probably most of it cooked out, and what remains is very background.

I’m very proud to have enough jars now to share with friends. I’m sure… just SURE...that they cannot possibly live without tasting my home canning efforts. Their lives would be bleak and flavorless without me! I owe it to them to open the possibilities before them of ambrosia such as they have never before tasted.

Maybe if I’m lucky next year I can get together a canning club at church. Poor people would appreciate the value. Rich people would appreciate the gourmet goodness. It sounds perfect!

Keep a Working Pantry (read all 19 entries…)
canning more cherries

I was looking at my “stash” of canned cherries, feeling very smug about how beautiful and sexy they are. Then I wanted to share them with some of my best friends, but realized I simply didn’t have enough to share, if I wanted my own family to get to enjoy them as planned this next year.

So today I went out and bought MORE cherries, as well as a pitter and two cases of jars. I had to settle for buying regular-mouth jars instead of wide-mouth, but that will make them easier for me to give away, since I don’t prefer regular-mouth. While I was at it I bought two more boxes of replacement lids. The rings are reuseable, but the lids aren’t. I don’t know whether lids will be available in winter months, so I’m trying to project my needs forward and get enough for all year.

Finally, I also bought a new blancher. It’s basically a decent sized pot lined with a removable strainer basket. When I’m not canning it will be very useful for making spaghetti in. Much safer than lifting a pot full of water and pouring it into a colander in the sink.

I also gave in to culinary pressure and purchased (gasp!) a bottle of vodka. I got the cheapest available. To me it isn’t a drink, it’s an ingredient (like a spice) intended to bring out flavors in food only soluble in alcohol. Many recipes call for wine or brandy to add flavor, but I really can’t stand the flavor of alcohol, so I only need something flavorless that will act almost as hardware in the recipe. Just do its job and vanish, thank you. But it may add an ephemeral “something” to my next batch of cherries, pulling out flavors and essences otherwise too inhibited to be revealed.

I guess we’re all like that, a little.

Keep a Working Pantry (read all 19 entries…)
Planning for Treats

I have five quarts of canned cherries and two quarts of cherry syrup/juice. Besides writing the date and contents on the lid, I also labelled my jars with something to help me not binge on them all at once.

I have reminders such as “Christmas Pie”, “Thanksgiving Treat”, “February Tarts”, “April Gift to Me” etc. on them. Hopefully this will give me something specific to look forward to all year, until I’m able to make more.

The juice I’ve decided will make wonderful gelatin jigglers, if I just add some unflavored Knox gelatin. Or else maybe I’ll get wild and crazy and use it to make some sort of alcoholic drink with. Or heck, maybe combine both ideas and make upscale Jell-O shots.

Talk. Confess. Enlighten the world. Let it go already. (read all 337 entries…)
not sure if I'm hungry yet

Tonight I read a friend saying how happy they are to be dating a new person. I feel happy for them, of course. I well remember that glowing flush of joy in having someone to love and share life with.

I’ve been waffling for a long time now between feeling dreadfully lonely and missing sex and love, vs. feeling smugly self-sufficient and utterly blessed to have the freedom to be single and unencumbered by the responsibilities and troubles of a relationship.

Truth is, I want to have a reason to WANT to fall in love again. I know I will never pursue it unless it becomes a high priority, like a deep hunger or need. Right now I feel a mite peckish, but not really hungry for love. If love were food, I’d be willing to eat a sandwich if one were handy, but I don’t feel like getting up and making one myself.

I guess when I get hungry enough, I’ll find the energy to go hunt the buffalo and bake the bread and grow the lettuce and tomato to make the damned sandwich. (Yes, this is apparently a buffalo sandwich. You got a problem with that?)


Eat like a caveman (read all 10 entries…)
Today I Cheated

I’m not sure why I felt compelled to cheat all day long. I tasted some of my apricot-pineapple jam this morning, just to remind myself how good it is and feel proud. That turned into a spoonful or two. Then I had a vast craving for corn chips, and I ate quite a few with salsa and sour cream. Then I had a bread roll BOTH times I had a bowl of soup today. I think I gave in to temptation and had one or two medjool dates. And after canning cherries I had several spoonsfull of the leftover syrup. (I told myself it was “magical medicine” that would cure my sore throat. And it DID!! My throat was all scratchy this morning and all better now.)

I don’t know what made me so unable to keep to my resolution to avoid carbs today. My feet are already a bit swollen. My legs and knees are not yet as badly swollen as they sometimes have been. Maybe by tomorrow morning they will be. I dunno.

I’m pretty sure that even with all these carbs I’m confessing, I’ve eaten less today than I am used to have been eating many other days. Not that it was okay, but even in cheating I think I’m less worse than I was when I was eating BAGS of chips or PLATES of mashed potatoes along with breakfast cereal and several slices of cake or candy or cans of soda. So I’m cheating, but still improving.

Tomorrow I hope I can improve better, and resist the temptations more staunchly, and find comfort in the meat and vegetables I’m allowed to have.

Keep a Working Pantry (read all 19 entries…)
Bing Cherries

There was a bumper crop of Bing Cherries in Washington this year, so they’re plentiful and cheap. I bought about eight or ten bags of cherries, and each bag was probably two pounds, so I had quite a job to do!

I don’t have a cherry pitter, so I cut each cherry in half and removed the pits that way. It took several hours, but my daughter helped with some of it, and it was relaxing work. My fingertips did look bloody stained with cherry juice, though!

I made a simple light syrup to cook and can them in. Seven quarts raw cherries (We’d have had more, but we stuffed ourselves eating them fresh!) when cooked only took up five quarts worth of space. I went ahead and canned the leftover syrup/juice anyway because it is flavorful and I’m sure I’ll find a use for it later.

To seven quarts raw cherries I made a syrup consisting of ten cups filtered water, five cups sugar, 1.5 teaspoons almond extract, four teaspoons vanilla, a dash of salt, and half a cup of lemon juice. I cooked the cherries to a rolling boil, and skimmed off the resulting foam. Then hot-packed them in jars.

They now sit on my counter all red and luscious, like love letters from a torrid summer romance, waiting to be opened in bleak wintertime. Most likely when I use them I’ll bake them into pies, thickening the juice with cornstarch. I’ll serve them at Christmas to my best loved people, and nobody but me will know the tender secrets of their illicit beginnings and steamy past. Chastened by the kiss of cold and the passage of time, they’ll sit meekly smiling their dark, sweet, tangy secrets to themselves as they share a very respectable spread next to platters of roast beast and vats of buttery mashed potatoes.

Keep a Working Pantry (read all 19 entries…)
Pineapple-Apricot Jam

Made this jam with canned pineapple tidbits, fresh and dried apricots, and my daughter’s help.

It made about 11 cups. Some we’ll give away, of course, because I doubt anyone can eat 11 cups of jam in a year. It generally takes us three months to go through one store-bought jar. But then, we don’t really eat PBJ very often.

The flavor turned out well, but a bit too sweet. I had a total of about six cups of fruit and six cups of sugar. Next time I’ll add a quarter cup of lemon juice and reduce the sugar to four or five cups.

We processed the jam with a stick blender to get a smooth, rather than a chunky consistency. It is like a fruit butter now. We like it’s spreadability. One thing we’ve never liked much about store bought grape jelly was that it tends to be so hard set that it tears bread when you try to spread it. This goes on much easier.

We tasted one jar, which isn’t really even cool yet. It is pretty runny still. I hope and believe it will set up a bit more firmly once it’s thoroughly chilled. It is such a fine line to walk between having the jam too runny vs. too solid! But whatever happens I know it will be eaten and enjoyed.

I look forward to coating my Christmas Ham with this jam this year as a glaze. It will be very special.

Keep a Working Pantry (read all 19 entries…)
Back to Canning!

I am inspired to begin canning again. I have a new favorite YouTube guru. Her name is imstillworkin and she’s the smartest and clearest instructor I’ve ever found when it comes to canning, dehydrating, and otherwise preserving food for long-term storage.

I feel a bit conflicted, though, because the first thing I’m going to can will be apricot jam, and the second will be cherries in sugar syrup. I’m trying to give up all extra sugar, so these foods I’ll make won’t really be for me. They’ll be “to have”, so I can feed them to other people I love.

I’ll give some as gifts. The jam will be mostly for my daughter, because that’s her favorite kind. Part of me feels odd gifting people with food I consider unfit to eat because the sugar level makes it poisonous to me. But if THEY aren’t diabetic or insulin resistant, then they should be fine indulging in these treats occasionally.

Talk. Confess. Enlighten the world. Let it go already. (read all 337 entries…)
Re-upping a goal

Would someone please remind me how to get a goal back onto my home page from my “already did it” page? I clicked “I want to do this again”, and it said I was doing it again and could add new entries, but it still doesn’t show up where I want to see it.

I’m re-upping the goal to create a working pantry.

Eat like a caveman (read all 10 entries…)
Good Morning!

Today I woke up with no headache!

Though I don’t suffer from daily migraines anymore, I still usually wake up with a headache. It goes away with aspirin and a caffeine pill, but it has happened most mornings even after I gave up milk. Something about sleeping badly I guess.

This morning my first thought was a luxuriant enjoyment of my legs still not being swollen. I can move them and feel them and they are supple and wonderful. Then I realized that though I was waking up as groggy as usual, I wasn’t in a bad mood and I didn’t have a headache!

Somehow giving up starches must have something to do with my head aching too. Maybe it has to do with a general inflammation.

I made a soup yesterday with beef, lentils, split peas, cauliflower, and barley. I was worried that the barley might have counted as a “starch”, but either the proportions were well within tolerance or barley is just naturally different from refined wheat flour and potatoes when it comes to spiking an insulin response.

So this morning I feel great! I hope I can keep this good trend going!

I also seem to have misplaced about five or ten pounds… I stepped on the scale and saw I had lost them. Most likely they’ll turn up sooner or later, but for now it’s fun to notice they’re gone.

Camp NaNoWriMo (read all 4 entries…)

I am making an amazing amount of progress on this goal! Namely, none.

I am rather amazed. I shouldn’t be, but I am. I thought I’d be able to write SOMETHING. But no. Not a word.

I don’t know why I’m unable to write. I try, but it’s like there is a repulsor-field around this project. The very idea of “making something up” just feels so wrong to me. I cannot tell a lie! I cannot say something that isn’t true, because I have no idea how this goes! I cannot make up characters. I cannot envision situations. My mind, which is normally so full and varied, becomes a vast empty chamber of echoing hollowness.

I wish I could change this. The month is only 1/3 over and I still have time to make a showing, even if I don’t finish. But I cannot deny that there is something magical about this process. It is magically repulsive.

I wish I could remember why I thought this would be a good idea, or thought that I could do it!

Eat like a caveman (read all 10 entries…)
Seven C's Soup

This was my first successful food that let me enjoy eating without any starch or sugar. I made it in a huge pot, and enjoyed it for two days. Now I think I should have made more…

Seven C’s Soup
Chicken (one whole)
Carrots (one bag, peeled and sliced)
Celery (one bunch, washed and sliced)
Cabbage (one, cored and diced)
Cauliflower (one, cut into small florets)
Corn (fresh-cut cream-style from 2 ears)
Chopped Onion (I cheated on the name to make this fit)

In a large cauldron (my water-bath canning pot) place wire rack on bottom to stop things from sticking. Add whole chicken and all bite-sized vegetables. Cover with water. Add 1-2 Tablespoons of salt or bullion granules. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover, and simmer 45 minutes.

Pull chicken whole from pot, and remove skin and bones from meat. Chop meat and return it to the soup.

Adjust for seasoning as desired.

::Next time I make this I will have 5-6 clean canning quart jars handy. If I do not choose to actually can the soup, I will ladle it into the jars, cool them, and store them in the fridge. Few if any germs will survive the heat of cooking and the vacuum-sealed near-sterility of the jars, and if any do they will not grow in the fridge. The soup could last for months that way. (If I don’t eat it first.)::

Eat like a caveman (read all 10 entries…)
I Gotta Save Myself from Diabetes

This won’t be easy.

As hard as it was for me to give up milk and dairy products, probably giving up starch and sugar will be harder. But I think I MUST do this for my health, because I’m afraid I’m killing myself by eating these foods.

For the past several years I’ve noticed my legs are starting to swell. Sometimes it’s worse than others. Sometimes they’re like water balloons, and I have to lie on my back with my legs elevated to help them drain. It feels very uncomfortable, and it’s embarrassing, and worst of all I think it’s indicative of weakening kidneys or veins. These may be early signs of oncoming diabetes. That thought terrifies me. Both my parents have diabetes, and one of my best friends has lost a leg to it. It’s no laughing matter.

I haven’t been able to place exactly what the cause might be up till now. No websites that talked about edema ever mentioned giving up starch and sugar. They only ever said to give up salt. But recently I figured that if I’m becoming diabetic the thing I need to stay away from is anything that will spike my insulin response. I need smooth, stable blood sugar, not a roller-coaster ride of zoom and crash. So for a few days I’ve been eating only meat and vegetables and fruit and I’ve been staying away from bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, sugar, etc. And miraculously, the swelling in my legs is almost completely gone today.

It feels so amazingly good to have my real legs back!! I never would have thought how delicious it is to look at my foot and see the skin revealing nuances of veins, muscles, and tendons. I never would have though how sublime it would be to stroke my foot and see the skin wrinkle beautifully instead of mashing in like a chub of sausage. My legs can bend now without feeling pressure at the knees that used to make me feel like a balloon animal. My calves have regained their loose flexibility and appropriate floppiness when I jiggle the relaxed muscle in my hand. I missed that so much!

This is the result of me giving up “evil carbs” for one or two days. I know now that I must give them up for life.

I also know that I will occasionally cheat. I still have pizza parties promised, and birthdays to bake cakes for, and holidays that simply wouldn’t be the same if I had to be utterly stingy with my diet. The thing is, I’ve decided that for me starch and sugar will from now on be treated like alcohol. Something to be shared at celebrations, but not consumed alone, and ALWAYS in moderation. And since I can’t have much of it, whenever I do have some I want to NOTICE and deeply enjoy every mouthful. No more unconscious eating for me.

And then, just as now when I sometimes cheat and have a bit of milk or cheese, I have to know the next day I risk suffering. I have to know it’s a trade-off, or at least a gamble.

This isn’t a low-carb diet in the sense that I’m counting carbs and trying to lose weight. Losing weight would be groovy, but what I really want is to delay the possibility that I’ll become diabetic, which I see literally looming ever closer with each drop of insulin I force my body to produce.

I’m sad because I know pasta, bread, rice, sugar, and all forms of simple carbs are cheap, tasty, and easy to store, and changing my diet may well end up being expensive, troublesome, and boring. I plan to take up canning again to increase my availability of meats and vegetables, because I want the best and I cannot stand the thought of eating factory-canned stuff much. It all tastes like metal to me. Home-canning happens in glass jars, so I know it’s more pure and I also control exactly what goes into it. That’s for me.

I’ve heard eating fruits may be problematic for diabetics, and fruit juice is definitely out. But I’ve also heard if you eat a fruit whole there are enzymes and fiber etc. not found in processed foods which slow its glycemic impact on your body, so I’ll keep an eye on those and see what my own reaction is.

One food at a time, I’ll build a menu of choices to live with.

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