Saturday, February 27, 2010

Snow Days and 649 Dreams

I got talked into acting like a kid today. Before we headed out I ate half a breakfast bar and a protein fruit smoothie. All topped up and dressed in layers we headed up highway 7.

Its been nearly 30 years since the last time I took up a sled and threw myself down a hill, repeatedly. It was the trudging up the hill in old running shoes hauling a 30lb kid still in the toboggan up the hill, time-and-time again that was the hard part. Gravity was totally on my side on the way down.

It was a blast. Truly. I didn't feel put out at all. Now L. is on the fence with the whole experience. E. just adored it and would have kept going if my energy had not tapped out or my butt threatened to drop off with frost bite (hey, that wouldn't have been a bad thing now that I think of it, darn!). L. was ready for a snack so we packed it in and headed to the farm's store. Hi Hope Farms has the world's best farm store.

Just opening the doors to the main part of the store was true bliss. The smell of freshly baked breads, pies and cookies just about had me float off my feet. I couldn't decide which jar of jam or preserve to buy (so I didn't choose any in the end). I did however make off with a huge loaf of multigrain bread, a cherry pie and cookie for each child. I also nabbed a quart of fresh apple cider.
When we got home I promptly heated up two huge bowls of super veggie soup, sliced big slices of the bread and paired it all with apple and some sharp cheese. Heated up the cider with some whole cloves and a stick of cinnamon. Hey! I earned it. Ok so I couldn't eat the whole lunch. Not even close but I gave it the college try *giggle*.
Dinner was fabulous tonight. A new entry into my repetoire but one that I fully intend to repeat. I took the filling for my caramelized onion and mushroom tarts and placed it in the center of a square of puffed pastry. I had toyed with adding a slice of brie but figured the pastry was already decadent. I served it with steamed carrots and green beans. The hand pie was entirely too large and really, I should have cut mine in half. Doesn't matter, I could only eat half so the rest I'll have for lunch tomorrow cold with a side salad. Soooo good!

I was just recalling the conversation that I had with husband on our way back home after our wintery adventure. We were discussing our desire to some day buy a little hobby farm or at the very least a rural house on a nice chunk of land.

Everything about living a country life appeals to us. It matches my personality famously. I'd like nothing better than to have all that space to just spread out and get my Martha on. It comes from my roots. Both of my grandparents came from farming back grounds. My grandparents on my father's side were still very connected to these roots. They lived on an acreage and maintained orchards, extensive fruit patches, grape vines, and vegetable gardens. They kept bees and poultry.

Just about everything they ate was grown on their land and definitely made by my Grandmother. They very seldom ate out. It being an extravagance that neither of them could justify. I think I got so much of my work ethic and desire to live that very same life from them. Even my father loves to create things with his hands and is a most excellent cook/baker in his own right. Though I have never heard my father mention ever wanting to live in a rural setting but I tell you he has a major green thumb. That's one thing I'm still trying to navigate.

I pictured what I would do with the property. How I would spend my time. I even wondered about what kind of equipment we'd require just to move about come winter time. At the farm today they pulled out the CAT just to haul some city slicker out of the ditch. Apparently, he thought that was a good parking spot.

At the conclusion of our conversation today we determined that it would be an expensive proposition to just purchase the "farm". You know we really don't have the foggiest idea how much a farm sells for or the tax load but it's so nice to dream.
Ok after a little poking about on the internet I found a wonderful example of just the type of farm I'd love to have. Nestled in the Niagra Region and backing on to a river this 42 acreage has a 6 bedroom house with the most fabulous kitchen I've ever seen! It is now sold but it was listed at $609K A total bargin! I mean really, just look at those porches! *sigh*

Friday, February 26, 2010


It's Friday! It wasn't a very industrious day given that I woke up with a headache to beat the band. The drumming didn't stop until nearly 3 pm. Finally, with my eyes closed and pretty much trying to think about absolutely nothing, I drifted off. Woke up thirsty but no headache. What a relief. Since my head was pounding so much my plans for laundry and anything else pretty much were sidelined. I was really happy that I had made up my breakfast bars yesterday. I had a great meal that held me off until nearly noon.

I got the boys dressed in their layers and located some sand toys and out they went. What a relief. I was able to sit and have a cup of tea while it was still hot and enjoy the quiet. Oh why couldn't there have been more snow this year. They enjoyed it so much and kept them quiet (well out of the house) for 45 minutes to an hour. That's right. I managed to locate an hour of peace in the middle of my day. Too bad I spent it with my head on the arm of the couch.

Once they were done with the snow they came in for a hot lunch. That snow must have wiped them out because no sooner then the plates were emptied they trotted off to their rooms to play, quietly! Unless the understood how bad off I was and were just being nice. Ok so that's a stretch *snort*

I was going to make a mushroom/rice burger but discovered that the buns I had purchased and froze had actually gone bad before they made it to the freezer. My bad for leaving them out for a day. I was still adamant that I'd have that burger and toyed with having it naked. Then remembered that I have a stash of brown rice wraps in the freezer. Then a wrap was born.

A quiet nap time passed shortly after lunch and I decided that tonight we'd have fish & chips. I just didn't feel like I had enough in me to storm the kitchen and make dinner. Husband seemed happy to comply with my request for a night off.

No pictures of the fish and chips. By the time it hit my plate it didn't look so appetizing. I wouldn't take a picture of that to save my soul (or sole, hahaha). I did enjoy it but it was a guilty pleasure for sure.

We now await the men's hockey game. Husband has decided to keep the boys up. So they've been bathed and pj'd. They are laying on the floor at my feet with their blankets and pillows and bowls of popcorn. I'm not sure they'll make it until 9:30 and secretly I hope they pass out before the start of the game or they will be horrendous to put to bed if they get wired.

I'm considering slipping past them and heading upstairs to enjoy some peace and quiet. Hmmmm that seems an excellent prospect!

Thursday, February 25, 2010


Not feeling quiet myself lately. Been feeling really low energy, I mean even lower than normal. My shoulders and neck are stiff and I just feel, well crappy. I decided to take the day off of doing anything strenuous. Yep, I didn't run either. Strange I know.

I puttered but even that was some what noncommittal. I was supposed to have a coffee date with a friend this morning but the attack of the sick kid hit again. Its the season, what can you do?

Actually, it was a bit of a God Send. I had started in on a batch of Greek Yogurt when I realized that I'd forgotten the visit. I was still in pj's and hadn't had a cup of coffee yet. Then I got her message canceling and realized it was for the best, especially since I wasn't feeling 100% either.

I did manage to get the yogurt set up to do its thing. Then I baked a batch of these fabulous granola bars. They are actually bigger than an average granola bar and twice the calories so I'm calling them breakfast bars (or meals-on-the-run bars). I had one for a late breakfast, as soon as, it was cool enough to cut. It took forever to eat it and my jaw was sore from the effort but holy cow! Talk about awesome! These are my new favourite thing. Yes, it does seem like I come up with a new favourite thing at least weekly *giggle* Please note: in the corner of this picture there is a very hopeful doggie!
I've had pretty much no appetite today. I warmed up a bowl of spicy pumpkin soup and threw a handful of Kashi crackers and a bit of cheese and apple into a bowl. After a few sips of soup I just knew that it wasn't going to do the trick. I ate the crackers, cheese and apple but the soup got pitched. Hmmm? Not like me at all.Then nap time came. Another sleep of the dead. I got up with enough time to shower and clean myself up and take the kids to karate. I had told husband that I wasn't feeling well and that if he was worried about being late due to work and snow, I'd just take them myself. It was actually a very entertaining hour.

I got to chatting with one of the other moms while we watched our kids do their thing. She originated in Grenada but had lived through out Europe and finally settled here. We discussed the reasons why our kids were taking Karate and about how it was like to be a mom in North America vs The Caribbean. She said that she give North American women a lot of credit for shouldering so much work. Apparently, back home she would have a nanny and a housekeeper. That it was really common place for women there to not have to do nearly the amount of work that a NA woman does. That was news to me. See you learn something every day.

Today's dinner was designated Super Veggie Nacho Night. It pretty much was what it sounds like. Finally, some appetite showed up. This was a big hit with everyone. In fact, both boys asked for seconds. That never happens! Even husband went back for seconds. Must put this into a more regular rotation. It only took 10 mins to make.Kids are in bed now and the house is quiet. Hubby is working on the couch next to me and I'm nearly drowsy. Yep, definitely not feeling well. Usually I'm relaxed but definitely not sleepy at this hour. Oh well. Time to call it a day.

I am hoping that tomorrow winds up being a snow day. I'd love nothing more to come downstairs to find that hubby hasn't gone to work. I know he'd be working from home but still, it would be nice knowing he's home.

If a snow day was declared tomorrow and you were, in fact, snowed in. What would you do all day?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Kitchen Nightmares

"And this is your heart........ha, just kidd'n!"

I took the kids to their last cooking class for a bit. It was a bit of a disappointment this time. The person teaching the class got handed the wrong curriculum and we didn't get to tour the produce section and talk about veggies. Instead, we munched on seeds and fruit and made some of the worst granola bars ever. One had so much marshmallow that it couldn't even be called a bar. It turned out more like a swamp. Oh well, it got us out of the house and it got L. to try seeds and dried cranberries. Of course, E. wouldn't touch them. Too strange for his blood.
I got up with a bit more energy after turning in early last night. I got my vitamins in and made a great blueberry banana protein smoothie for breakfast. Sorry, I forgot to take a picture of it. I've been doing that lately. I dig into my food and it turns out to be an after thought. I then got myself ready and the kids got dressed and we headed out of the house at a very normal pace. No one pushing, no one cussing. It was relaxed. How strange?

Got to the cooking class to find that it was only the three us and a mom with two little girls. The class was quiet and easy paced but it was the wrong subject. I was really hoping that the kids could be turned on to veggies but it wasn't meant to be. When I asked about next week's class I was informed that it was canceled. No matter, I think I'll take up the torch and keep motoring through here at home. They seem to like elaborate recipes. Gosh knows I've got those in abundance.Lunch was leftover salmon croquettes with some roasted potatoes, carrots, cucumber and leftover pear (apparently my boys don't like pear). I got to munch on that as I puttered about getting the boys their lunch and then helping them to clean up the mess they made with the markers and play doh.

Then, Finnigan took it upon himself to up-chuck in every room on the main floor! Oh man, how disgusting! I almost lost my lunch. Apparently, raw hide bones don't agree with him. Will not be repeating that mistake twice. *gag* After I cleaned up the many spots I just decided not to sit back down. I got to cleaning the kitchen and moved through each room like a bit of a tornado. I put the kids down for quiet time/naps so that I could clean without them undoing all my hard work.
Then I got my Greek yogurt set up to do its thing and then sat down finally to take a break and have a snack. No sooner than I sat down it was time to get up and get things going again. Dinner was just a leftover night because I had some errands to run. I had a bean and brown rice burrito. I got another cup of full strength coffee. That makes two "full caf" coffees, two days in a row. I could be well on my way to a bad habit. *eeek!* That isn't a good thing either since I've been trying very hard to break all my really bad habits.

Now I'm sitting here contemplating just calling it a night and getting to bed right now. I'm not feeling 100% and its likely due to the dust that I stirred up in my cleaning storm. Doesn't seem to matter what we do this place is always coated in dust. I wonder if we need to have the air ducts blown out?

I hear we are also in line to get a whole lot more snow between now and Saturday. That isn't helping my mood much. I am so totally in cabin fever mode. I need some spring and I need it now! *sigh*

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Dragging Butt

Another grey day *sigh* Another day that I wake up tired and remain tired. I swear I must have low iron or something because I seriously drag some days. I also resorted to the big guns. Yep, caffeinated coffee. 2 large cups of caffeinated coffee strategically consumed through out the day. Without it I'm sure I'd have passed out at 5:30.

I started the day at 7:30. A much more respectable time. I started in with my cup of coffee while I warmed up my overnight oats. I think this cup of overnight oats worked out marvelously. It is 1/3 cup of steele oats, 3/4 cup of almond milk, 1/4 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp sea salt (refrigerated overnight) then I added 1 tbsp almond butter w/flaxseed, 1 tbsp agave and about three slices of dried apple roughly chopped. Delicious and just the right chewy texture I was looking for. I think that oatmeal largely disagrees with me because it gets a glue-like gumminess. This was very chewy like a wet granola and the apples were strong enough in flavour not to be lost in the taste of the almond butter. Just three minutes in the microwave then let sit until most of the liquid is absorbed.

I got all the oatmeal and another cup of coffee (normally all coffee made in my house is mostly decaffeinated so that I can enjoy more than one cup without getting all spinny) down when it was time to get up and start looking about for my gym bag. Husband came home from dropping Casey at the vets and got me a full strength coffee. I needed something to help give me a jolt.

I had decided to hit the gym with the kids to get my Tuesday run in. Though I hate the treadmill its nice to have it as an option. Today's run was supposed to be 10K but that is impossible on the hamster wheel for me. My Ipod died, then my legs got sore. I quit just past 5K and went and soaked my legs in the cool water in the pool while my kids splashed about like crazy monkeys. I'll make the rest up on Thursday night.

My lunch was a leftover bean and brown rice burrito. I was right. It was just as good today as it was last night. (ok so I'm cheating, this was last nights picture but I had the same meal so I figured why not?)

As soon as I wolfed this down I had to hit the showers and rush back out of the house to consult with the kid's pediatrician. I forgot that he requires his patients to be in his office 10 minutes before their scheduled appointment. I've got to start inputting these appointments into my calender to reflect that. So a mad dash it was. Then we had just enough time to rush off to pick Casey up at the vets where he had been since 8 am this morning. Of course, that means that Finnigan was a total mess without his brother and best friend with him.

Did I ever tell you that Casey is actually Finnigan's dog? Yes well, Finn had such bad separation anxiety when he was a puppy and try as we did, we couldn't get him to calm down. We were left no choice but to let him choose his brother and that's exactly what he did. Casey and Finnigan have been the best of buds since.

We grabbed another cup of Tim's on the way home and I barely had time to knock it back when it was time to head out for another doctor's appointment. This time for me. A physical. *yuck* I wound up getting a Tetanus shot in the arm. Now I have a very achy arm.

Dinner was a bowl of vegetarian chili with a slice of freshly baked corn bread. I topped mine with an ounce of low fat cheddar and a dollop of sour cream. Next time I'll omit the sour cream. It deadened the taste of the chili. The minced cilantro on top was genius!

This batch made one bowl for hubby and I. Plus one bowl for hubby's lunch tomorrow. I was also able to put into the freezer two more servings each of the chili and corn bread. This is really convenient given that this meal repeats itself two more times in the next four weeks. I love meals that I don't actually have to cook but were home made!

I'm looking about the house now and it appears as though while we were away today a bomb went off. Even with the kitchen clean the rest of the house looks cluttered and disorganized. How can that be? I wish I had a cleaning fairy or the energy to pick up after the kids go to bed.

Tomorrow is another busy day. *sigh* maybe I could clone myself? Oh boy, then I'd be twice as boring! It has just occurred to me that it seems my menu planning as of late has been largely leaning toward South western dishes. Hmmmm perhaps my appetite has gone to Mexico? I hope my liver gets some Corona as a result.

Monday, February 22, 2010


Wow, what a day! I remember my husband giving me a kiss good-bye at about 6:00 am then I remember looking at the clock at 7:16. Then finally my eyes opened at 8:23!!! Holy cow. That's terrible. I never sleep that late during the week. Usually I'm up about 7 am and have part of my morning tucked away already. I scraped myself out of the bed. Dragged my butt into the kids rooms to start the daily ritual of giving hugs and kisses and opening the drapes. Then turning on the light for the Goldfish (which is situated in the kid's bathroom, you know I'm not entirely sure why he is in there but whatever).

Cereal and oatmeal made, kids are fed. Half a cup of coffee has disappeared. I eye-spy my new blender (a free-bee from the Superstore that makes individual sized smoothies) and decide that for breakfast I'd just make a protein smoothie. 1/2 a banana
1/3 c of frozen mango
1 scoop whey isolate
3/4 c orange juice

Not too bad. Not very sweet and unfortunately I could taste the protein powder but then that canister was dismal to begin with but too expensive not to use up. I'll choose a better one next time *wink*

No sooner than I downed this smoothie and poured a second cup of coffee, my calender reminder popped up. I figured it was to remind me of what I had planned in the way of a menu for the day but nope. This reminder was for the kid's cooking class that was due to start at 10 am. At that point it was 9:37 am! Carp! *yes I said carp*

You've never seen a woman fly around her house so fast. Both boys were dressed from head to toe and waiting by the door. I threw on a pair of jeans and scraped a brush through my hair and put in a pony tail and flew downstairs and threw on my coat and shoes and out the door we went. Needless to say I looked scary. We managed to get there at 4 mins past and the class had only settled into their seats. We didn't miss a thing. Phewwwww!
The kids got to make these cute lemon sugar cookies in the shape of Olympic Medals tied with shoe string licorice. They also made chocolate coin medals and a really horrible smoothie. The recipe for this retched concoction was: 1 banana, mango (couldn't tell how much but it was a lot and the mango wasn't very ripe, yuck) 1/2 an avocado. 1 cup of orange juice and 3 cups of milk and a small squeeze of honey, 1/2 cup of ice. Gross gross gross. No one drank it. What a waste.

We brought our cookie medals and the baggies of icing home. The kidlets ate their chocolate medals and wolfed back their sandwiches and apples. We'd decorate the cookies later. Aren't they cute? I had the veggie enchiladas for lunch again today. But that's it. I'm tired of them now. Had a big cup of tea and just hung out working on school work with E.
After naps, oh yes, I definitely needed a nap. I got up and started in on dinner. Tonight we had bean and brown rice burritos and green salad. I made the tortillas again. I can't help it. Buying stale ones is a big turn off now. Gorgeous! I have three of the leftover burritos wrapped up in the fridge for lunches for the week. I bet it will be just as good tomorrow as it was tonight!

After the kids were put to bed I was going to head out and start shoveling the snow for a little exercise and fresh air but hubby refused to let me do it. Bahhhh! So I stood on the porch wrapped in my sweater and I watched him. It is beautiful out. Not too breezy, the snow was really coming down at that point. The neighbours all friendly and in good spirits despite the return of winter.

Once back inside I set to work on my Greek Yogurt. Got the milk cooked and cooled and the starter in. It is set aside to do its thing all night. In the morning I should have a very nice thick litre of yogurt. I also put together a cup of steele cut oats with some almond milk, cinnamon and sea salt. In the morning I'll pop it into the microwave then add in the almond butter and dried apple. I'm hoping that the texture will be improved. I'm looking for something slightly more chewy and less gluten-y. Making it in the crock pot is fine but it always makes too much. If it is bad I'll just have a yogurt parfait instead.

Which leads me to wonder. How boring is this blog? Really, my life is so uninteresting. I pretty much live in my kitchen and when I'm not in there then I'm likely off running like a fool or hanging out with my family. Sorry....if you're hanging around to see if something interesting comes of this, you are likely going to be disappointed.

The update Day two without a contribution to the swear jar. I'm doing so much better but it still requires me to think of a suitable swear substitute. I'm still sticking to my 1hr of computer use a day. Still no TV. The yoga has been a bit harder to work in because there are so many other things that I always feel pulled to do. But now that I've mentioned it. I'm going to trot off and do that now then turn in early. I've been so tired for the last couple of days. I sure hope I'm not coming down with something.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

The Sunday Long Run

Woke up to husband gently trying to wake me up. I had asked him the night before to wake me up when he got up so that I could fuel up for my long run well in advance of the time I was due to head out. I rolled over to see that it was 6:30 am. *sigh*

The best consolation to getting up so early is that I get to spend some quiet time with my hubby with a cup of very fresh coffee (he makes the best coffee) and it's time spent before the kids get up and make an ungodly amount of noise. Before I went to bed last night my run partner had written to say that she was unwell. I was expecting that it wouldn't improve overnight. Thing is, if Sheree thinks she's sick, she's sicker than she'd like to admit. So I was prepared to map a route and head out later than 8 am.

Breakfast today was a big, big bowl of oatmeal with a scoop of plain protein powder, almond milk, cinnamon and some raisins. I sweetened it with some agave. Then I had a big bunch of grapes and an orange. Downed another cup of coffee and headed out the door about 10:30 for my run.

Ok, so I allowed my ego to map my run today. I was supposed to do 12K but mapped a 14.5K route. Not a big deal. Not a huge increase either. I figured if I felt strong I'd do the whole distance. If I was feeling fatigued or sore I'd turn at the 6K mark and make it a 12K.

Off I went. It seemed the whole run was into the wind in both directions! How on Earth is that possible? The worst part was that with the ground bare all I could smell was dog poop. I kept wondering if it was just me imagining it or if it was really poop. Gross. I don't think there would have been any avoiding that. I did enjoy the sun. It made the run nice and warm despite the wind.

I ran out of side walk right at 7K, oddly right at the Welcome To Oshawa sign. I took it as a sign that I should turn around and make my way home. It was a good run. I listened to my audiobook and ran a very consistent pace. I was so happy to turn down my street and head in that I had to fight from picking up the pace. After a hot shower I got to the kitchen for some sustenance. Veggie Enchiladas and chocolate milk. Yum. Not a half bad combination. Then I took a mitt full of Tylenol and make a nice cup of Sencha and collapsed on the couch. When 3 pm rolled around I collapsed into bed for an hour nap. It was like the sleep of death. I barely remember shutting my eyes.Once I was up again I sparked up the BBQ. I broke my veggie fast with a gorgeous 6 oz steak and a huge green salad. I really wasn't craving meat. Could have done quite nicely without it. Even hubby said that it wasn't a big deal and that he hasn't missed the meat in his diet for the last 4 1/2 days. That's pretty big. I never realized how much meat we really consumed. There was usually meat at dinner almost every night. Today the one day of the week where it was allowed we didn't think to have any until dinner time. Odd. That said I made quick work of the steak.

Husband went to watch the hockey game at his dad's place tonight leaving me in peace to watch a chick flick and just relax. As soon as he put his coat on to go I herded the kids upstairs for bed. Both were sound asleep less than 20 minutes of being in bed. They had a good day.

I'm still exhausted and think that turning in early is a great idea. That was only 14K. What the heck am I going to be like when I have covered 20K?

Note: I only put a dollar into the swear jar yesterday and today I haven't sworn at all. I should quickly hit the pillow so that I can get away with one good day!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Quiet Days

Every second Saturday is grocery day. Not too surprising. I'm sure lots of families operate this way. It was nice that on this shopping trip I could skip one whole aisle and its the one that the most crowding occurs in. Yep, the meat aisle. I got to cruise right by it via the dairy aisle. There wasn't that usual searching for a tissue and hand sanitizer issue either. I hate when the packages of meat are wet with blood. Gross!

Nope today it was just veggies, veggies and more veggies. Toss in some milk and cheeses and some other sundry items and a successful shop was completed. Of course, E. was not at his happiest. He got off on the wrong foot when he realized that he would not be able to monopolize his father and he pretty much let the world know how hard-done by he was. I was expecting it. I let most of it roll of my back. He got a time out for the rest.

Got the goods home to realize that of course I had more stuff than room in the fridge. I only purchased what would be needed for the week's menu but that stuff is a lot bulkier than I had given it credit. I actually had to take a bag of mushrooms which were still in perfect condition and put them in the dehydrator to make space. Now I've got a small bag of perfectly dried mushrooms taking up less than 1/4 of its original mass. I've also done some bananas and some apples that were a little less than perfect. Ok so I'm a drying fiend. Got some ideas of wicked muffins and breakfast bars in my future.

The day started out typical in that I had no appetite. I ate a granola bar before I left for the shopping trip and it held me very well up to lunch time. Then I had another veggie enchilada. No point repeating the picture. I actually sat down and wrote out the recipe for Misty. Doing all the mental measuring in my head. I'm so happy I will likely never be called upon to create my own cookbook. I certainly would need someone more adept at picture taking to capture the real look of the food. I am no photographer. I will not even hazard to blame my equipment *snort*Dinner tonight was Salmon Croquettes with oven roasted potatoes and green salad. I made a spicy mayo for dipping. Gorgeous dinner. Next time I'll skip the potatoes and serve these bad boys on greens.

Well that's pretty much it. This has been a less than exciting day. That's fine. I don't mind the quiet of days like this. I was out late last night having coffee with Laura and Christine. It's more than fair to say that I was talked out today.

I've heard a rumour that it is supposed to be 6C tomorrow. I'm almost afraid to hope for it. I have imagined for many weeks now, how wonderful it would be to head out the door with one less layer. Now to find out that it could happen for a long run. *swoon* It's too much!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Hamster on the Wheel

So this day has only cost me a dollar so far. I swore because my Spelt tortillas stuck to the wax paper and I only discovered this when it was time to put them into the pan to cook them. Oh well.

The day started out nicely. My little troopers all happy and ready to spend the morning at the "fitness". I managed to choke back some Kashi cereal with almond milk and a banana and a glorious cup of coffee before hunting around to pack my gym bag. Really, I should have done this last night but opted to procrastinate.

We were at the gym for about an hour. The perfect amount of time. I ran my 6.5K on the treadmill. Which was about as long as I could stomach being that bored. The first 4K I spent visualizing. Then the next 1k I spent shoe shopping and picking out OPI in my mind. I'm now a proud owner of an imaginary pair of black suede over the knee boots and a lovely shade of copper OPI. *snort* Once the last km ticked by I took off to gather the kids and we were off.
I treated myself to a nice cup of Tim's and we came home to munch our lunch picnic style. We spread one of the boys blankets on the floor and pop in a movie. Today's selection was Aladin. I warmed up a bowl of mega veggie soup and made a snack platter of the leftover tuna salad from yesterday. Put some cheese and crackers on the plate (to share with L). And joined them.

By 2 pm I was bushed and the kids gave no opposition to going down for naps (Thank God). I was out for a good two hours then bolted up and headed downstairs for a snack. A glass of chocolate milk with a scoop of protein powder mixed in. It was ok but a little too thick for my palate.
Then at 5 pm I headed into the kitchen to start working on my veggie enchiladas. All I can say is Holy Cow!!! I think this is my new favourite meal. Ok so not when the uncooked tortillas stick to the wax paper and need to be re-rolled just as they were due to be in the blistering hot pan. Gahhh. Hubby helped save the day by getting the dough off the paper and back into a ball for me to roll out and toss into the pan. He also supervised the toasting of the tortilla while I rolled. He's awesome!

Now I'm going to dash upstairs and throw on a pair of jeans and a sweater and head out to Laura's house. It looks like its just going to be the three of us tonight. I hope husband doesn't wait up. This could be another late night *giggle*

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Day Two, Thursday

Wow today was quite a bit harder than yesterday. No cravings for meat or anything but the internet fast was harsh. I found myself feeling really bored despite the huge pile of laundry I was doing. Gee imagine that! Another grey day had me feeling low energy. Then I got a good dose of dust right in my face when I went to swap out DVD players. The old one having eaten a Thomas The Tank DVD (shhh don't tell L). I guess the space behind the TV really needs dusting. I'll have to pull my hazmat suit out of storage for that little job.

So I got up feeling sluggish. Pretty near skipped breakfast. Oh when or when will I feel hungry in the morning? Still I had my vitamins, coffee and had a kashi bar even though I didn't want it. Worked on my laundry and planned some lessons but the dose of dust to the face brought on a huge headache. I still actually have it but I'm not willing to surrender to it completely.
Lunch was a snacky affair shared with the kids, naturally. Tuna salad w/hemp seed and onion. Low fat cheddar, grapes, carrots, cucumber and kashi multigrain crackers. A hot cup of Sencha to wash it all down.

Hung out with the kids and did some music appreciation. This lesson is loosely based on having them curl up in my lap and zone out to my mellow music collection while watching the itunes visualizer. E. couldn't tear himself away from it. *snicker* We sat like that for about 45 minutes until we were so sleepy that no one resisted the nap.Got up from my nap with the hope that the headache would have disappeard and I could go out for my run but no dice. Back to the cupboard for another dose of extra strength tylenol and a snack. Looks like we'll be heading out to the gym in the morning so that I can make up for the missed run. Gahh I hate treadmill running.Now I wished that I had made something a bit more elaborate for dinner since I didn't run. Originally when I drew up the menu for the 40 days, I had figured I'd head out for a run, as soon as the boys were packed in the car and set to go to karate. Because of that I'd need a fast dinner. I do love the convenience of making large batches of mushroom/rice burgers because you can freeze the individual patties and pop them into the toaster oven and they are ready from frozen within 10 minutes. Gotta love that. Healthy and fast! Some how before and after dinner I managed to lose three dollars to the swear jar. Hey I'm so lucky that I stopped at that. It could have been a ten dollar day! The why, when or how is not important but to think of it now. I'm wondering if I might have chomped off more than I could chew with that last challenge. I'll be feeding a small family for sure at the end of my 40 days, but I fear with no improvement to my horrible habit. My husband got the jars for me while I was helping to put the kids down for bed. He thinks he's being funny. I see this as a self-fulfilling prophecy. At a buck-a-swear its going to be spendy. (click on the picture to enlarge the photo to read the top of the jars).

I've only got a few more minutes of my internet time. I'm going to go and scope out Facebook. Then I'm headed up to do some yoga and some reading. Catcher in the Rye. I did manage to put a few books on hold with the library before I started my blog. I had all day to brainstorm my list of Lenten reading materials. Ok, don't roll your eyes. It's almost all chick lit or Canadian Pros.

Hope you all are having a fabulous short week.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Ash Wednesday, A New Beginning

"Remember, man, that thou art dust, and to dust thou shalt return". A reminder that there is an ending. Out of that reminder I've taken another message too. For every ending there is a new beginning. Mine starts today.

I got up this morning and fell quickly into my well worn rituals. Vitamins downed. Coffee in hand I wandered over to my couch in the living room. Put down my cup and went to turn on my computer. That in and of itself wasn't a big deal but the draw to check email, facebook and a few of my other groups was a palpable force.

I quickly shut off the email, and the browsers and pulled up my Itunes and put on one of my play lists. Got the kids their breakfast and got my own.

Once we were done eating I got up and puttered about and got ready to take the kids over to their cooking class. They got to experiment with baking soda and make chocolate chip cookies. Then we did a brief shop for whatever we'd need to tide us over until our Saturday morning shopping trip.

We came home and had lunch. Mine was spicy pumpkin soup with a slice of olive brule. Then we passed the rest of the early afternoon with a few games and play doh until it was time for naps. Thankfully, sometimes, L. still requires one. That means I get one too.

Dinner was a quick meal of shrimp on rice fettuccine with sun dried tomato and riccotta. Another slice of olive brule. I've been feeling a bit too stuffed from dinner. Downward facing dog is a bad idea tonight. I'll be spending that time in quiet reflection instead. Maybe legs up the wall if my stomach doesn't protest.

I have a feeling that in a few days the soft addiction to my computer and the noise of the TV will pass. Hopefully, a bit easier than the still repeating craving of diet coke (still haven't had any). I know that I don't need to make all these sacrifices but in a sense I feel I do. I'm trying on a new me and get to do it with minimal effort. It's a gift and I accept it readily.

Now to catch up on the food portion.
Yesterday's breakfast was a simple. Coffee, juice, apple and kashi bar.
At lunch I was pretty hungry (no shock there eh?) I made chicken salad on a rice wrap with spinach greens and...Vegan "cream" of broccoli soup. The white beans had overwhelmed the taste a bit so I added in a few splashes of Tabasco Sauce to counter it. It worked and was delicious.Dinner was 5 mini strawberry flax/oatmeal pancakes with turkey sausage. I drizzled maple syrup over them and the pancakes sucked it up! Still totally delicious. The batch also made about 10 servings of these little pancakes so I've got a good stash in the freezer for the next week or two.

Today's breakfast was the same as last night's dinner (without the sausage) no shocker there. No point repeating the picture.Lunch today, the spicy pumpkin soup with a slice of the olive brule.This dinner, started out as shrimp with rice fettuccine and tomato pesto but I added in the ricotta to help it be more palatable for the boys. The really like creamy pastas. Delicious but its proven to be pretty heavy. I guess I'm not used to heavy pastas any more. It has actually side lined me a little.

Well I'm off now. My hour is up. I'm headed up stairs to try the legs up the wall/meditation. If that doesn't work then I'll just sit quietly and meditate.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Shrove Tuesday-Katie's Commandments

Ok it's time to make it public. Like I mentioned before, every year I give up a list of things that I feel in my heart is a sacrifice. Or at the very least is uncomfortable to do. Now many of the things that I'd give up this year I've already done. I've given up fast food, diet coke (a huge one) and store-bought sweets. This year I wanted to go deeper. I was also looking for a sacrific that would give back. This year I'm giving up meat and meat products except for Sunday's. Though if I'm doing well with the "vegetarian sympathizing" and don't miss the meat I'll make a veg-head dinner for myself and feed the meat meal to the family.

The kids are not involved in this meat fast. In fact, they are not included in the lent sacrificing at all. They are too young to benefit from any sort of dietary change nor does it mean anything to them. They are too young to understand exactly why this period of the year means so much to us. They'll get their usual meals along with whatever I'm serving up that day.

Ok so that takes care of the dietary fasting portion of the Lenten Sacrifices. I'm also doing my TV fast. I'll get to watch some movies on the weekends but no live TV. I get to catch up with Y&R on Sundays so that'll mean a lot of fast forwarding through the crap to get the meat of the stories so that I can fit it all in. On top of the TV fast I'll be giving up my computer for all but an hour a day. That will be a big adjustment. I'm used to taking my time with composing my blogs. I guess what I'll have to do is to write out my blogs by hand and just type them quickly and post pictures to be efficient.

What I will do to keep myself from going nuts, practicing yoga 6 nights a week (can't do it on Tuesday Nights as I get in too late from Run Club). Reading a few books that I'll pick up from the library this week. Doing some more journal writing. Yes, it's true. I don't normally blog a lot that's on my mind. Somethings are too personal to cast out into the electronic void. I do keep a traditional journal. The only exception to the computer fast will be to check my calender for appointments and contact information or to play my music collection. That basically means only a few minutes a day to surf. It may mean more person-to-person contact. Looks like I'll be using the phone a bit more.

I also plan to plow through the last little bit of grade one with E. in the next 40 days. If I'm fasting from TV then I guess so are they. Though if they'd like to have a show after all the work is done I will not begrudge them that. We'll get a lot more done without digital distractions. I may even pick up a piece of charcoal and start creating short sketches again. Like exercising an old unused muscle.

I'll be baking and cooking a lot more as a result of the new menu and I plan to start to teach E. (and L. if he's interested) to cook. He can help prep some of the veg and get his hands in the bread dough.

Here is another big sacrifice which really I should have done years and years ago. I'm going to give up swearing. Yep, I'm tossing it to the way-side. I suppose the only forgiven swears will be as a result of injury and quick reflexes. If I slip up I put a dollar in a jar. I bet the food bank would love to have that cash! That's exactly where it will go.

Ok so here's the hot list aka Katie's Commandments:

  1. No meat unless its Sunday
  2. No TV unless its Y&R on Sundays, movies are ok on Sundays too
  3. Only 1 hour of computer a day
  4. No swearing
  5. All but three meals out of 120 will be home made
  6. Read more
  7. Journal more
  8. Start sketching again
  9. Min 30 minutes yoga a day times 6 days a week
  10. Finish Grade one!

Monday, February 15, 2010

I'm gonna eat you up!

Wow two posts in one day. I've been on my own since 8 pm when husband helped me put the boys to bed and I cleaned up the kitchen from our lazy day. I put some strawberries, apples and pears into the dehydrator and made a cup of tea. I've been sitting here ever since trying to catch up on my Y&R and plan my menu for the Lenten Season.

I just finished. It looks awesome. I planned only the evening meals since those are the hardest. Lunch will be much easier. I love making soups en mass so I'll have a bunch of different kinds in the freezer to be thawed at my whim. Hubby can always take cheese, egg salad or tuna salad sandwiches through out the week so that he doesn't get sick of soup or PB& J's.

Breakfast is always easy. Most of the time I usually have oatmeal, cold cereal, pancakes or scrambled eggs. The reason why this menu plan is so special is because its vegetarian (lacto/oval/fish). Except that I will serve meat on Sundays. That ought to keep us from chewing on each other's legs come the end of Lent.

The rest of today's meals are as follows:
Lunch was a huge bowl of leftover greek salad. It took forever to eat it but it was so good.

Dinner: Chicken breast, leftover lemon potatoes, parsnips and carrots with goat cheese feta.

Getting Caught Up

Wow I've been a busy girl. You can always tell when I'm really burning the candle because I'm so quiet *giggle*. After Thursdays soup-fest I concentrated on getting ready for Valentine's Day. I must have torn the basement apart looking for my heart-shaped cookie cutters. No dice. That really cheeses me off since I purchased them before I had the kids and I don't think they've ever been used because they get put away whenever they get found but never in a place where I can find them again. So yet, another year and no heart cookies *sigh*

There are too many meals to blog so I'm just going to post them in order with a brief descriptor.
Friday's Lunch: The Spicy Pumpkin Soup with crumbled feta cheese and cilantro. (I adore this soup!

Friday's Dinner: Chicken with root vegetables in rosemary lemon black olive sauce, over a seeded whole wheat couscous. Hemp seed sprinkled over top.

Saturday's Late Breakfast: Yes its a mushroom/rice burger. I was feeling sleep-hungover and just wanted what I wanted *giggle* Then I think I spent the rest of the day sleeping or reading cook books. Dinner was take-out sushi and a Sex and The City Marathon!

Sunday Morning : up at 6:30 am fueling up for a long run with Sheree. Oatmeal w/almond milk, Almond butter w/flax banana and Salba. I also downed two cups of coffee. Guzzled a glass of orange juice just before heading out the door to run.

When I had a coffee with Sheree and when I got home I got to have chocolate covered strawberries and a glass of Riesling while thawing in the bath tub (see I got spoiled!)

Lunch: Leftover lemon quinoa with carrots, basil and goat cheese feta. I was too hungry and too tired to do anything more than open a fridge and microwave whatever I found.

After a good long nap I got up and made dinner for my sweetie. Lamb chops, lemon potatoes, parsnips and carrots. Greek Salad rules! I get to have the rest of the salad for lunch today.

I didn't take a picture of the chocolate fondue with strawberries and bananas that we had for dessert. It just didn't last long enough *snort*

Today-Family Day we are pretty much just being a little lazy. If I didn't just roll out of bed and thrown on a pair of pants and a sweater I'd still be in my pj's. Breakfast: scrambled eggs with sauteed onion, bell pepper and portobello mushrooms topped with avocado. I actually think its a coffee in my Bailey's kind of day.

Today's plans are: breakfast bars and pizzas. I'm actually wondering if there would be a grocery store open today. Gee I should have planned that out a little bit better.