Saturday, October 6, 2012

Food: The First Week

Day 2:

This is going to be harder than I thought.  I'm afraid that by limiting myself to eating certain things, I might not eat at all because it's much less convenient.  Interesting that the true meaning of fasting is really abstaining from food.  Hmm.  I also spend a significant amount of time at Sarah's (my workplace) during meal hours, and it takes a lot of self control to not raid her fridge/pantry.  I did help myself to organic applesauce because it didn't have any added sugar, but you better believe I dumped some cinnamon on it.  Yum.

I'm stretching my rules a bit.  I made myself a smoothie using up vanilla yogurt (on the verge of expiring), some frozen fruit (peaches, blackberries, strawberries) and throwing in some spinach.  It tasted delicious, and now I'm having a conscious check because my original "rules" involved using up only that which would perish before the month was over.  We all know frozen fruit could last in the freezer for a long time.  Oops.

And the justification began:
1) What else was I going to do with the yogurt? (As though it's despicable to eat it without any mix-ins.)
2) I was just using up some spinach before it goes bad. (It's awful without dressing.)
3) I was donating blood in a matter of hours and needed to eat something hearty. Hence, the smoothie and a couple scrambled eggs.  After donating, I had a box of raisins and two crackers.  I did, however, say no to the cookies and juice!

For dinner, I was invited out to celebrate my friend Beth's birthday.  (There is no way I was turning this down due to my craving for close-proximity girl friends.)  We went out for Mexican food and I had a chicken salad.  Taco shell, lettuce, tomato, chicken, cheese.  No dressing.  Tortilla chips and a bit of salsa.  I followed the rules.

Day 3:

I adhered to the rules today.  Eggs for breakfast, straight up no-sugar-added applesauce with cinnamon, and homemade chicken soup. (chicken broth, water, carrots (from the fridge), green beans (from the garden), zucchini (from the fridge), onion (from the fridge), potatoes (from the garden), corn (from the fridge), gnocci (from the cupboard - it expired but wasn't opened), rosemary (from the garden) and some pasta I've had forever.  Ok, the pasta was not necessary. I can't seem to get it right!

Day 4:

I realized I could still make my favorite scramble: eggs, potatoes, onion, rosemary, jalapeno (garden).  Yay!

Day 5:

Paul is home from Pasadena and is joining in on the "fun."  We really wanted to catch up over a coffee date at Red Leaf, but resisted.  And grumbled a bit.  So we resorted to sitting on our own couch, and warmed our hands and puckered our lips with a mug of hot water + lemon juice + cinnamon.  Jealous? We drank it and laughed at the simplicity of it all.  Simplicity - isn't that one of the goals of this whole experiment?

Me: *reviewing with Paul what we decided was ok to eat
Paul: "So, if I'm at Andy's for Monday night football, and he provides a bucket of KFC, is that ok to eat?"
Me: "Was it made with olive oil, salt and pepper?"
Paul: "Umm..." *searching for an excuse* "No..."
Me: "Sorry, babe."

Breakfast continues to be easy, but definitely takes a little more time than pouring cereal in a bowl or eating string cheese on the go.

When I told Paul I was going to make applesauce, he sweetly inquired: "don't you usually add sugar to that?"  I frowned: "Yes, but sugar isn't on the list..." So, I threw some apples (including the skin for extra fiber), water, lemon juice and cinnamon into the pot.  Boiled it until the apples were soft, and smooshed it.  Nothing fancy about it.  Paul took the first bite and I asked him "So, how is it?"  His facetious reply: "the best applesauce I've ever tasted."  I love this man for his sense of humor.  (I was disappointed by the blandness and crunchy skins.  I'm peeling the apples next time.)

Day 6: 

Craving all things pumpkin: pumpkin lattes, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin cookies, even pumpkin-related goodies I've never tried.  I want them and I can't have them.

Leftover scramble for breakfast, and chicken soup for lunch.

Grocery shopping was a piece of cake because I could only purchase 7 things.  We loaded up on fruit and avocados, organic, free-range chicken, grass-fed chicken eggs, two kinds of wheat bread (with careful consideration of the ingredients - more on this later), and mixed greens (the spinach alone wasn't cutting it so we got a mixture).  (Our only non-7-sanctioned item was ultra soft kleenex for my ultra red nose.  Stupid cold!)

Dinner was delicious!  We discovered some OLD corn tortillas in a cupboard - no visible expiration date and no visible signs of ick.  Ordinarily, I would have tossed them in the garbage, but since we're focusing on limited ingredients for the next 24 days, I wasn't about to throw away a valuable commodity that might still be good.  So we made our own tortilla chips (olive oil and salt), salsa (tomatoes, onions, green onions, jalapenos and salt), guacamole (lemon juice, avocados, salt and pepper) and presto: simple chicken tacos.  There is hope for this month, after all!

Day 7:

We followed the rules this morning until the memorial service at church.  Janis Wood was an incredible pillar of faith within our church.  She died, a suffering servant, and is now singing "Holy, Holy, Holy" to the Lamb of God.  No more suffering, no more pain.  Janis, we miss you, but wouldn't wish you back to this earth for a second.  You are a new woman, and we celebrate your faithful legacy.

Lunch was provided afterward and there was a ton of homemade Filipino food.  We're talking delicious Filipino food.  Plates of it.  Paul was initially going to limit himself to a bread roll.  I was secretly hoping he would just start digging in.  We bounced in and out of line, elbowing each other while questioning each other: "what should we do?" We considered this a rare treat, and an opportunity to visit with our church family, so we ate what was provided.  As we sat down at our table, Paul looked at me and said "it's for Janis."  I giggled.

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