Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy 2010

Today is the last day of 2009 and I can't imagine where the time has gone.

I finished the year with one of Amy's Kitchen frozen meals - the Asian Noodle Stir Fry. It was the best thing I've eaten from Amy's and I love their Mexican meals. The noodles were tender without being soggy. The tofu was crisp and the vegetables rounded it out nicely. Bright green broccoli, peppers, and mushrooms. Best of all it was GF! I will be buying it again and again.

I'm driving a 24' moving van to Kansas City tomorrow. My daughter Rachel is moving. We're expecting more snow so I will be driving slowly and carefully.

Happy New Year to everyone.

More next year...

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas Eve Blizzard 2009

We were going to work a short day on Christmas Eve. Mid morning the UPS man came in and said it was starting to ice on his windshield. I decided to move my car into the parking garage which is a definite no-no at my place of employment. Only the bigwigs get to park there. I walked to my car on a very slippery sidewalk and when I got there I couldn't open either door or my trunk. I walked back to the library got a big pitcher of hot water then walked back to my car and poured it around the door frame. The door opened at last and I got in and turned on my defroster. After a few minutes the ice on the windshield was scrapable (is that even a word) and I cleaned it off, drove to the building I work in and told my boss I was going home. By mid-afternoon it was snowing heavily and by evening the winds were gusting at 50 mph. So we were in a blizzard warning and ended up with 15 inches of the white stuff by Christmas morning. Unusual for Topeka. The roads were impossible. Everything was closed, if not by Christmas, then by snow and ice. Beautiful but deadly. My daughter and her boyfriend came over. We opened gifts and ate dinner. Then they went home. I spent the afternoon watching season 4 of "Bones". It was a quiet day.

More later....

Friday, December 18, 2009

Today the library staff and the Baker University School of Nursing faculty and staff had our Holiday celebration at the Brickyard Barn Inn. I called ahead and told them I needed to eat GF. I got to talk to the chef and he was quite familiar with GF dining. He looked at the menu for the luncheon and told me what I would be able to eat without fear. They brought me out a flourless chocolate cake kind of thing (he said it had almond flour) and they gave me a chicken breast that didn't have sauce on it. The potatoes and vegetables were safe. I was comfortable with the way they handled it and I was able to enjoy the meal without worry. Our waitress told me she understood and was being extra careful because she had an allergy to latex and had ended up in the ER during a dental procedure where they didn't pay attention to keeping everything latex free.

More later...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Lots of GF blogs out there

I am enjoying looking for and finding new (to me) GF blogs. It's quite comforting to be part of a large blogosphere of folks with Celiac or other gluten sensitivities. Today I found a blog with great recipes - Carrie over at Ginger Lemon Girl. She has a recipe for Pecan Pumpkin Pie Bars that I can't wait to try. Hop on over and check her out.

More later...

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

GF Holiday Partay

The local Celiac Support Group had their holiday luncheon on Saturday. There were 64 in attendance and most brought 2 dishes so their was an abundance of food. The menu included:

turkey (smoked and baked)


mashed potatoes


sweet potatoes

cranberry relish

fruit salads

pasta salads

jello molds

rolls (I guarantee you couldn't tell the difference from non-GF rolls)

pumpkin pie


lemon pie


and many other goodies

It felt so funny to be able to eat from all the bowls and platters without having to worry about whether it was GF. The group's president is going to make a newsletter out of all the recipes and we'll each get one attached to an email (or snail mail for those who don't do computers). I can't wait because there are some I'd love to try.

More later...

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Recipe for GF Apple Compote

Apple Compote for Pancakes and Waffles

Recipe by Delores Gunther of the Topeka chapter of the CSA/USA, Celiacs helping Celiacs

2 med apples, diced
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp corn starch
½ tsp lemon juice
1/2 cup water

Place apples in saucepan. Add all other ingredients and stir over medium heat until mixture comes to a soft boil. Lower heat and simmer until mixture becomes thick and apples are soft. Spread on pancakes or waffles (GF, of course).

Personal Note: The original recipe called for one cup of water. I found the resulting mixture to be too thin. If you feel you need more water to make a thin sauce to pour over your pancakes/waffles just add more.

More Later....

Monday, December 7, 2009

More Amy's Kitchen

I've decided to start bringing my lunch every day instead of trying to run the gauntlet at the cafeteria. Today I nuked Amy's Garden Vegetable Lasagna. Printed on the front of the box is "No gluten ingredients" but on the list of ingredients it mentions that the meal has been processed in a facility which processes foods containing wheat. I'm not 100% sure what that means but I really enjoyed this product. The tomato sauce was excellent, the noodles a little limp, but the flavor over all was good. I think next time I'll heat it for the full 5 minutes because it was a little cold in the middle - not Amy's fault, mea culpa all the way.

If anyone has any good ideas of snacks and lunches to bring to work I'd love to hear them. Today I brought a golden delicious apple, Fage yogurt with honey, Back to Nature California almonds (heavenly), raw baby carrots, and a LaraBar. No, I don't plan to eat all of these today but at least I have something to eat when I get hungry. I don't want to give myself any reason to eat out of the snack machine or cafeteria. My food is tastier and healthier and above all GF.

More later...

Thursday, December 3, 2009

GF Chex Mix

My co-worker has been eating chex mix by the handful this week and it smells so good when I walk by her desk. I'd pretty much given up on eating any this year until I ran across this post on Fire and Salt. I can't wait to try it. I know what I'll be making this weekend! Thanks for the recipe Brian.

More later...

P.S. *****not my photo*****

Boo Hiss

I'm never going to eat in our cafeteria again. I'm tired of spending the afternoon popping pain pills because of what eating gluten does to me. I was assured that my selections were fine by the cafeteria manager but whoa - PAIN. I had roast beef which was in broth (not gravy), mashed potatoes, and cooked carrots. Within a half hour I was starting to get that funny feeling which I now know indicates that my pain crisis will be starting. Having Celiac is going to force me to plan my meals ahead and not rely on the local cafeteria. I thought asking them would work but obviously cross-contamination is occurring. Sorry for the downer post.

More later...

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Eating Out

I've been getting braver about trying to eat out. The local Celiac group gave me a list of restaurants where the staff are familiar with the restrictions of gluten-free eating. The one my daughter and I decided to try was Outback Steakhouse. When we were greeted by the hostess I asked for the GF menu and she handed me one - slick, just like their regular menu except it had notations about how to order the items to make certain they were prepared without gluten. I had a Victoria's 6 oz fillet, with a dressed baked potato and steamed veggies without the spice blend which the menu indicated was not GF. I enjoyed the meal very much. I don't eat steak often and when I do I want someone else to cook it. When we paid the check I asked the waitress to tell the manager how much I appreciated being able to eat in a place that understood the limitations. I'll be eating here again.

More later...

Monday, November 30, 2009

My first GF Thanksgiving

I did it. I cooked the entire Thanksgiving dinner and it was almost all GF. I did buy some mashed potatoes from Country Crock that may have had gluten. I didn't look because I didn't plan on eating any. I also bought a pumpkin pie for my daughter and her boyfriend.

The menu consisted of:

Honeysuckle turkey breast cooked overnight in the crock pot. I got this recipe from Gluten-free Easily. You can find the recipe here.

Corn on the Cob

Brussels Sprouts

Candied Sweet Potatoes (like my mother used to make)

Waldorf Salad

Canned gravy (I don't eat gravy)

Mashed potatoes (I took the easy way out and bought them already cooked)

Pumpkin Pie with Whipped Cream

It was a very good meal. I remembered why I like to cook. Good healthy food and I'm sure it's all GF.

I hope all of you enjoyed your holiday.

More later...

Friday, November 20, 2009

Fire Roasted Crisps - Not GF

The very week I was diagnosed with "possible Celiac" I received a shipment of goodies from Dr Kracker to review on my blog. For a couple of weeks I didn’t do anything with them (but want to cheat on my gluten-free status and eat them up in a hurry). I didn’t eat them. The memory of the pain was too fresh. I finally came up with a solution. I gave them to my daughter and her boyfriend and they are going to review them for me. My favorite flavor, of the ones I tried before the diagnosis, was Fire Roasted Crisps. There was a touch of jalapeno in them that really boosted the flavor and all of Dr Kracker’s products are thick and crunchy. I would have happily made this flavor my main cracker. They were so good with a nice sharp Cheddar and maybe crispy slices of a fall apple.
Here's a list of the ingredients if anyone is interested:

organic whole wheat flour, filtered water, organic wheat flour, cheddar cheese (pastuerized milk, hannilase enzyme, salt, cultures), sun dried tomato, sweet potato, red jalapenos pepper, black sesame seed, organic flaxseeds, organic quinoa, organic sunflower seeds, yeast, sea salt, fresh basil, olive oil, garlic
Contains: wheat, milk
More later...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Today I did a lot of hunting for and commenting on Gluten-Free blogs. I'm kinda changing my focus since the diagnosis of Celiac. I used to love looking at recipes but some of the fun has gone out of doing so because so many I shouldn't eat. Although I could still make them for others I wanted to find things that I could eat. So, I'm finding new sources. I'm looking for recipes that are GF. So today I went looking and I found quite a few really good blogs. If you're interested take a look at my blogroll. There have been several additions. I haven't deleted any cuz I don't plan on giving up on my favorite "reads". Again, I'm adding not taking away. That seems to be a theme with me.
For lunch I had a piece of salmon, some steamed veggies, and a banana. I'm already hungry so it's a good thing I have some yogurt in the fridge.
More later...

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Some yogurts have gluten

I just checked Stonyfield website and it says
that all their yogurts are gluten-free except for
Yo-Baby plus cereal. I'm going to write to the
publisher of the book I read which said that
Oikos was not gluten-free. Am glad that I
can go back to enjoying Oikos again. Thanks for the

I'm sad. I can't eat Oikos anymore because it has gluten. What is gluten doing in yogurt? Regular Stonyfield is ok thank goodness. I love their new pumpkin pie flavor. It's really pumpkiny and not all full of spices (I like spices in pumpkin but this way is good too.) I find myself eating a lot of yogurt these days. At least one container every day. I think the little active cultures help with my tummy troubles and besides - it tastes good. I'd probably eat Fage everyday but it's too expensive. It's over $2 for an individual sized container. I do love it with honey though. Believe it or not I'd never eaten honey before I discovered Fage. YUM!

More later...

Monday, November 16, 2009


I finally got my H1N1 shot. The hospital was only offering them to direct patient care staff right now, but since I patient sit on the weekends and evenings I convinced them to give me one. I'm sitting tonight so I'd better get going.

More tomorrow...

Monday morning

This morning I slept in and woke up to snow. It's pretty falling but I hate scraping off car windows. It's not that cold so I don't imagine any of it will stick.

Breakfast this morning was a heated Udi's Lemon Streusel muffin and a Fage's yogurt with Honey. Very satisfying.

More later....

Friday, November 13, 2009


I picked up my Whooga Ugg Boots from the Post Office yesterday. I was worried that they would be too small but they fit perfectly. Don't you love that new shoe smell? The packing slip caught my eye because it was hand written in Chinese. The WUB Co. is in Australia but I guess their boots are made in China because the package shipped from there. They had to go through customs and everything. I walked around the house in them for about an hour. I'm looking forward to colder weather when I'll be able to enjoy walking in the crisp air wearing them. My daughter is going to take a picture of me wearing them and when she does I'll post it.

See ya'll on Monday.

More later...

Thursday, November 12, 2009


Just got back from the dentist and oral surgeon. I had a bridge that the seal broke on and the tooth underneath decayed. There wasn't much left of the tooth to begin with so it had to be pulled. My general dentist separated the bridge so that the tooth could be pulled and the oral surgeon pulled it. Why this procedure required the services of two professionals I don't know.
My face is now swollen and numb. Not much pain yet. I am hungry but won't eat until the numbness goes away. I'm supposed to stick with soft, cool foods and of course - GF.

More later...

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Via's Pizzeria

Last week my daughter and I went to a pizza place which was featured in the local newspaper as having gluten-free pizza crusts. I was quite excited because I love pizza and was certain I'd never eat it again if the diagnosis came back positive for Celiac. The waitress was NEW. I asked about the crust and she told me I could get it in white or wheat. Wait a minute... wheat crust is gluten free? I ordered the veggie special 8 inch. The cost was $7.99 plus $2.50 for the special crust. I consider that to be expensive for a small pizza. The pizza was very good. The crust was all nice and crisp and the veggies and cheese were arranged artfully. I only ate half. The next night I nuked it for about 30 seconds. The crust was still good if not quite as crisp. I'll be back in spite of the comedy of errors which ensued. The waitress brought the check in one of those ubiquitous black folders. I placed my money in the folder and the waitress took it, brought me back my change and this is where it got interesting. I opened the folder, there was my change, my receipt and someone else's credit card receipt all nicely signed. I took the change without looking at it, returned the folder to the manager telling him that I'd gotten someone Else's receipt. He told me that he would give it to the correct party. When I got home I cleaned out my wallet and arranged my money. There was the $50 I had put in the folder, plus my change. I don't know why I was embarrassed but I was. I didn't want them to think I had walked out without paying so I called the restaurant and told them what had happened. Of course, the next day I returned to make it right. In spite of this craziness I will continue to patronize the establishment because I really liked their pizza.

More later...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Amy's Kitchen

I've used Amy's products off/on for several years. There was only one store in town that carried their products back then - now there are two. One is a big Hy-Vee. The other is a good sized health food store called Akins Natural Foods. I checked out Amy's website today and they have a PDF file available listing their gluten-free products. I bought the Mexican Casserole Bowl. The box says no gluten ingredients which I'm almost certain doesn't mean 100% gluten-free. There's possibly some cross contamination going on. I ate it anyway. It tasted like the homemade tamales we bought on the street corner in New Orleans back in the day. I enjoyed eating it and will buy it again. I plan on using the PDF file to ask the stores to stock more of the gluten-free products. For example the Lentil soups. I didn't react to the Mexican Casserole Bowl. Hope that's a good sign.

More later...

More later...

Monday, November 9, 2009

With just one diagnosis... life has changed. I am a Celiac and I can no longer eat foods which contain gluten. I must read labels thoroughly. Most processed food is off limits. Eating in restaurants is like walking through a mine field. It all seems a little overwhelming right now. I'm reading a book called The Gluten Free Bible. I've learned a lot. I've been referred to a local woman who is a Celiac Nurse. She was diagnosed about 30 years ago so she has lots of experience dealing with it. I have the feeling that I will be uncomfortable shopping for awhile. I'd just gotten to the point where I was getting comfortable with raw foods and fresh fruits and vegetables and now there's so much I'll need to pass on. Thanks for traveling this new road with me.

Today I tried a new flavor of Kind bars - Fruit and Nut Delight. It was quite delicious and also gluten-free. It was thick with nuts - almonds, peanuts, walnuts, and Brazil nuts - some of my favorites. It also had pieces of raisins and apricots. I will be having this one again.
This morning I had a Udi's lemon streusel muffin. The taste is divine. It's just what I wanted. I no longer feel quite so deprived. The texture isn't like a regular muffin. They're more bready than cakey. I noticed that Hy-Vee also carries the same brand in a blueberry flavor. I look forward to trying them next shopping trip.

More later...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Whooga Ugg Boots

This morning I got notification that I won a pair of Whooga Ugg boots. I've already ordered them and notification that they have been shipped has already been sent. Can't wait. I'm sure they'll be great for this winter. I ordered the classic chestnut short boots.

More later...

Lab test results

Last night I had pain in my abdomen and nothing I took relieved it. I finally went to sleep and when I woke up a few hours later it was gone. I'm still waiting on the lab results to see if I do, in fact, have Celiac Disease. I haven't been eating gluten so one would think that if it is Celiac the gluten-free eating would help the pain. The blood was drawn on Oct 16 and they said 7-10 working days so I should be hearing soon. Next Tuesday I have an appt with my GI doc. I am being very careful of what I put in my mouth. So far I've been in the ED twice, hospitalized once, had blood work (several times), had a CT scan, an upper and a lower endoscopy. I just want to know what it is. I hate being in limbo.

More later...

Monday, October 19, 2009

Celiac it is

Sorry about the lack of posts in the last week but I've been in and out of medical facilities. My upper GI biopsy came back positive for Celiac. I went back Friday to have a blood test to confirm the diagnosis.

I'll write a longer post telling about the week I spent trying to get a diagnosis.

More later....

Thursday, October 8, 2009


Hi guys! I'm going into detective mode. No I haven't been watching too many forensic type shows - well yes I have but that's not why. For the last 3 weeks I've been having digestive tract problems almost every day. I'm still eating clean and have been for several months. Nothing changed recently. But ever since the day I landed in the ER with cramping and other symptoms I've been almost constantly nauseated with cramping mid-belly. I wonder if I've got an ulcer. I'm going to the doctor after I've kept records of the episodes and what I have eaten so I can see if he can detect a pattern. My mother had celiac and I haven't been tested. I should go gluten-free for awhile to see if that changes things. Here goes...

Friday, October 2, 2009


I walked around the hospital complex this afternoon to work off some of my fullness from lunch. I also did upper body stretching and this one squat type stretch I used to do before my accident last November. Yesterday was the first day I tried it and it still bothers my knees so I don't hold it very long. If you want to see a picture of the stretch check on page 66 of the October Health magazine.

For lunch today my coworker and I got take-out from Jason's Deli. I had a large baked potato with a little cheddar cheese, bacon bits, green onions and a big pile of homemade pico de gallo. It was the best tasting thing I've eaten in awhile. I love baked potatoes. I ordered off the menu and asked for just what I wanted instead of their prechosen combinations. That makes me feel good.

Good exercise and good food - good combination.

More later...

Thursday, October 1, 2009


I got up at 4:15AM to take my daughter somewhere. It was warm and rainy. I didn't think I would be able to go back to sleep but I did and I didn't get up until 8:00AM. I have to be at work by 8:30AM so I was in a BIG hurry. I made it !

For lunch I had a small piece of bar-b-q chicken breast without the skin, cauliflower, broccoli, and carrot mix, and a serving of yellow squash. For something sweet I got a large cup of summer fruits, mostly cantaloupe and grapes.

I'm doing the "I want to be the kind of person who..." in my head today. It really helps me to make the right choices. I'm going up to the school of nursing to get a 32 oz cup of ice water.

More later...

Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Today I went for a walk. The weather was in the 60's and there was a cool wind blowing. The wind did nothing for my hair but it sure felt good.

More later...

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Does anyone else ever go back and read their blogs? Today I thought I'd spend a little time going over some of my posts from the past 3 months and just get a glimpse of where I've been and why I started this journey to begin with. I enjoyed the experience. I was reminded that there are reasons why I have chosen to make healthy changes in my life. I was reminded that I feel so much better when I get lots of fresh fruit and vegetables. The last few days I've made some not so healthy choices and my body is rebelling. I feel like a brick is sitting in my stomach and I have no energy.

Thanks for hanging with me as I continue to sort out my choices and keep on trying to make healthy ones.

I'm going home to an upper body workout with 5 lb weights and some yoga. I have a new DVD I've been dying to try.

More Later...

Friday, September 25, 2009

October Shape

Yesterday afternoon my copy of the October issue of Shape magazine came. One of the success stories was Tina from Carrots n Cake. Check it out. It's fun to see someone you "know" in a magazine.

More later...

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Flu Shot

I got my annual flu shot on Tuesday. Free flu shots are one of the benefits of working at this hospital. Now my arm is red, hot and swollen. Better than having the flu though. We'll also get the H1N1 shot when they come in. Not too many reports of H1N1 in Kansas yet. I hope it stays that way.

I just read an interesting post over at The Fitnessista. It's one of those - I really need to think about what it says - posts. Jump on over and check it out. I don't count calories but I do think in "points" (too much Weight Watchers indoctrination over the years). I find I do better eating more than eating less. I'm actually consuming 7-9 servings of fruits and vegetables (usually raw), a serving or two of dairy (mostly yogurt) and a little protein. I have more energy and feel so much lighter. Enjoy Emma G's thoughts.

More later...

Friday, September 18, 2009

Back to work

I ended up in the ED on Tuesday. I'm not sure what I had but it was intense. I will spare the details but the part that scared me enough to go to the ED was that the cramping was so bad I was passing out briefly. They gave me a couple of meds and 2 liters of fluid. I was there about 5 hours and then I took the next two days off. I'm feeling much better today. Finally eating normal foods. I was on the BRAT diet for 72 hours. I just finished a piece of fish and a big salad followed by some fresh pineapple. My stomach is quite full. I should get back to posting regularly next week. No overtime for me this weekend. Relaxation, long walks, and laundry.

More later...

Friday, September 11, 2009


Let's all say a prayer for those who lost loved ones 8 years ago on 9/11. Never forget...

On that date I drove into Kansas City for a court date. My car does not have a working radio so I missed the news. When I got to the courthouse is was locked but a man let me in and asked me what I thought about what was going on. I had no idea. He started telling me a little about what had happened and while we were waiting for the judge we listened to a radio in the office. I heard that the towers fell and I sat there in utter disbelief. We were the only case heard that day. After ours they shut down the building and sent everyone home. I will never forget...

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


As fall closes in I am feeling reflective concerning this blog. I remember why I started it - to journal my journey into wellness. The past couple of weeks I've kind of slacked off and quit posting as often as I did at first. It started as a journal so I could celebrate my successes. I've kept a paper journal for as long as I can remember and I love to write out my thoughts and contemplate my feelings. I need to remember that I am writing for me.

Today started off with an upper body yoga session and a walk around the neighborhood. I didn't get to the library until a little after 8 AM. For the last year I've been coming in at 7 AM to read emails and blogs. I thought that I'd shake up the old status quo and do something different. It was cool and misty and the walk felt so good. For breakfast I had my favorite Bear Naked granola, with sliced almonds, organic blueberries and organic vanilla yogurt.

For lunch I had a piece of salmon with some kind of mustard sauce, a large salad with spinach, carrots, broccoli, chick peas, pumpkin seeds and a drizzle of ranch dressing. It was tasty. I also had a banana that wasn't quite ripe enough. I've been drinking water all afternoon. This morning I had two cans of diet K cola.

When I get home in about half an hour I plan on having a huge green monster. I've been craving one for several days but was waiting for some bananas to ripen enough to freeze.

More later....

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Time in the ER...not

Sunday I got attacked by a patient. He grabbed my clothes, hit me in the right temporal area and kneed me in the abdomen. I saw stars for a moment when he hit me in the head. The charge nurse filled out an incident report and wanted me to go to the ER. I chose not to but I did take tylenol (generic) for the instant headache I had. The adrenaline was pumping and it took me awhile to feel normal again. I don't blame the patient. It was hard to go back in the room though. The nurse gave the patient meds for agitation and the rest of the shift was uneventful.

More later....

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


I’m trying very hard to not think of foods as bad or good. I’m trying to eat the next right thing. Some days are harder than others. I think of other healthy living bloggers and try to make the choices I think they would make. I use the choices they have blogged about as an inspiration for my own choices of food and exercise. I am learning to like the lighter feelings I have when I eat fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains. No more brick in the stomach and discomfort all afternoon and evening. I enjoy moving and stretching while watching my yoga DVDs. I enjoy long walks around the neighborhood and am looking forward to the change of seasons. I take one decision at a time and try to make the best choice I can given the circumstances of my life at that moment. I am growing and that is good.

Sept 1

Today would have been my husband's birthday. Ken, I'm thinking of you. Missing you today.

Last night I fixed the salmon burger with green chilies that I got at Whole Foods on Saturday. I cooked it in a small pan with a little olive oil. The patty got all brown and crispy on the outside and was moist and good in the middle. I ate it with a cold sliced heirloom tomato and some raw baby carrots. For dessert I had a delicious pear. One of those perfectly ripe pears that you find sometimes. Yum.

It was very cool in Topeka this morning. I opened all my windows and let the fresh air blow through. The high today is supposed to be in the mid-70's. Good weather for a long walk.

More later...

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Today's eats

Tho't I'd get in a post about my food and exercise for the day.

For brekkie I had a half-cup of Krogers low-fat granola (think I'm going back to Bear Naked cuz it doesn't have as many unpronouncable ingredients), half-cup of frozen organic blueberries and about a cup of Krogers low-fat vanilla yogurt. It was quick and tasty. I missed my almonds though. A trip to the grocery is in order this afternoon.

After I ate I walked around the perimeter of the hospital complex. It's about 10 blocks. It was in the 60's and it felt so good to walk. My lower back started hurting but I kept on going. I know the more I walk the less my back will hurt.

Just now, for lunch, I had a piece of white meat baked bar-b-q'd chicken, with a mixture of overcooked broccoli and cauliflower and a not so overcooked mix of green beans and carrots. I also got some fresh strawberries which I cut up and put a little stevia on them. Delish.

More later...

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

I want to be...

the kind of person who:

  • eats lots of fresh raw fruit and vegetables

  • takes long walks in the crisp fall air and gets to feel leaves crunching beneath her feet

  • takes the time to do a stretching routine every day at her desk (I found a great one in Bob Anderson's book Stretching for people who sit at the computer all day.)

  • uses yoga for stress relief instead of food

  • donates blood - today's the day (my employer has a blood drive every 8 weeks)

  • is friendly and outgoing (I'm shy)

  • isn't afraid to try new healthy foods (I haven't gotten into whole grains but I'd like to)

Next week will be September, gosh where has August gone. I'll be glad for the cooler weather. I love fall. I think it's one of my favorite times of year.

More later...


I was able to donate packed red blood cells today. My hemoglobin was 14.3. YES! Now it will be 16 weeks before I can donate again.

Friday, August 21, 2009

TGIF again

I don't know why I'm excited that it's Friday. I'm working two 12 hour shifts this weekend.

I just ate a huge salad with beets, mixed greens, carrots, broccoli, green onions, sunflower seeds and a splash of vinaigrette. I finished the meal off with a cup of summer melons cut up and 1 gigantic strawberry. I've got a 32 oz cup of water on my desk and my co-worker and I are having strawberry shakes this afternoon in celebration of the weekend.

I plan on finishing Real Food : what to eat and why this weekend. I've enjoyed reading it. Nothing new. It's kind of along the same line as Food, Inc. My daughter insists she's been telling me this stuff for years but it only recently sunk in. Sorry, Rach.

More later...

Thursday, August 20, 2009

All or...

I used to be the queen of all or nothing thinking. Made one poor choice and the day was ruined. If the day was in the middle of the week then the week was ruined. I would wait til Monday to jump on the diet bandwagon. Sometimes it was several Mondays before I could get back on track. I choose to no longer live my life that way. I am no longer dieting. I am up to 7-9 servings a day of raw fruits and vegetables. I eat one to two servings of dairy and oneI serving of almonds or other nuts. After eating all this there isn't much room for other foods. I decided to add real foods to my life and I look for ways to fit exercise into my life where/when ever I can. It's working. I have lots more energy and I just feel better in general. I feel lighter and I no longer have that brick in the stomach feeling after every meal. I plan to continue making one healthy choice at the time. My motto is "just do the next right thing". Thanks to the ripple effect one change changes so many other things. I am enjoying the ride.
Check out the great giveaway over at K's good eats. It's for a cookbook that I would LOVE to have.
More later...

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Zen Zero

Rachel and I had a grand old time Friday. She decided that she wanted to eat at Zen Zero. On the cover of their menu they call themselves "an Asian noodle shop & restaurant serving cuisine from Nepal, Tibet, Thailand, Vietnam, & Japan." It's located at 811 Mass Street (Massachusetts but everyone just calls it Mass), Lawrence, KS 66044. She's eaten there a lot but I've only been once before. There was a half page of vegetarian options but I chose the Dry Chicken Curry Thakali style which is a traditional Nepalese style curry with onions, ginger, garlic, garam masala, and tomatoes served with jasmine rice, rahar ko dal (yellow lentils) and potate achar. It was quite tasty although to me it tasted more of Indian cuisine. Of course, Nepal and India are in the same corner of the world.

After walking around for awhile we decided to take the plunge and drove into Overland Park (a suburb of Kansas City) to check out the Whole Foods store. Now I know why everyone refers to it as whole paycheck. I could easily have spent $500 there. They had many many raw food books and products. Most of the produce had signs saying they were from local growers. I loved the fruit salads but I checked on a pint container that had blueberries, blackberries, pineapple, and a couple of different melons - over 7 bucks - ouch. I decided that I didn't need fruit salad at that price.

After spending most of the money I had brought with me Rachel wanted to check out Oak Park mall in Overland Park. It wasn't too far from Whole Foods so we used google maps and drove over there. We spent a good two hours just looking around. We checked out Teavana. I really liked the Rooibos Chai. I now wish I'd bought some but I was so shocked at the prices on the cast iron tea pots that I forgot about it.
I have a feeling that we'll be going back to both places. It was a fun day. My mom and I used to have nice days like this and now I know how much she enjoyed them because I know how much I enjoy doing things with Rachel.
More later...

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Happy Birthday to Rachel

I’m off tomorrow!! Saturday my daughter will be 22 but she has school all day so we’re celebrating on Friday. She wants to go to Lawrence again. I’ll have to get her to take some pics cuz she’s the photographer in the family. These two photos are of Mass St in Lawrence. It's the original downtown area. See some of her work here. Anyway she wants to go out to eat (she hasn't told me where) and then we’re going to use a coupon from Barnes & Noble to get her a book on photography. It’s a series that she loves and the latest volume is coming out this week.

Breakfast was per usual this morning. I ran out of Bear Naked granola yesterday so I dug into a box of Kroger low-fat granola that was hiding it my goody closet in the break room. I had Stonyfield French Vanilla yogurt, frozen blueberries and a sprinkle of sliced almonds. I wonder how long I will still want to eat this same thing. Oh well.

Am all excited about the Healthy Living Summit going on in Boston this weekend. Wish I could have gone. I’ve never been to Boston. I’ll bet everyone has a blast. It will be fun to read about it on everyone’s blogs on Monday.

For lunch I had two cheese enchiladas with a plate of finger-food veggies and a cup of fresh summer fruits. The enchiladas were SPICY but tasty. I also ate a mini dark Hershey’s chocolate bar. Yum. When I want chocolate that’s what I go for. I once tried an 85% cocoa bar but it was a little too bitter.

I won’t be back ‘til Monday. Hope everyone’s weekend is pleasant and full of healthy delicious foods and yummy exercise. I know mine will be.

More then…

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Les feuilles mortes

Fall is nearly here. Although it doesn't feel like it. It's 91* here. But the calendar doesn't lie and some schools started their year this morning. On my street there were several kids standing outside waiting for the big yellow school bus. I missed out on riding the bus to school. I always lived in walking distance in grade school and junior high and by high school I rode public transportation - streetcars and city buses. I'm looking forward to the change of seasons. I think fall is my favorite season. It's such a pleasure to walk through the neighborhood watching all the leaves changing color and the pretty fall plants with their orange, gold, and deep purple flowers. I love the foods of fall and everything surrounding Halloween and Thanksgiving.

You might want to check out an interesting post on "normal" eating ove at Nutrition by Eve. It's very interesting. I'm one of those folks who never got a handle on what is normal when it comes to food. Glad that Kath put up the URL on her blog so that I got to read it. Enjoy...

Today I'm concentrating on progress not perfection. Taking one bite at a time. For lunch I had a salad beast with whole fresh mushrooms, broccoli florets, baby carrots, spinach and some iceberg mixed in. I used about a tablespoon of real ranch dressing and added a small can of tuna. Lovely. I also had some fresh strawberries and grapes. The strawberries were huge - more than one bite each. I like little Louisiana berries better but you can't get them this far north.

I also did about 20 minutes of yoga concentrating on the upper body movements. My muscles just hum after doing this routine. I'm looking forward to doing lower body stretches when I get home. Don't like to get down on the floor while I'm at work.

More later...

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

So far today...

First thing this morning, before it got too hot, I went for a walk around my neighborhood. I don't usually keep track of distance but I do keep track of the time. This morning I walked for a little over 30 minutes. I don't listen to music when I walk. I just think and let my mind wander. I come up with some of my best ideas while walking. Then I came home, showered (I do not appreciate humidity), and drove to the library where I jumped on a computer in the nursing student's computer lab and read email and blogs while listening to music in my headphones. I still listen to ADAM every morning.

For breakfast I had my standby. It was tasty and filling as always. That was at 7AM. It's now 11:20AM and I'm starting to get hungry. Lunch will be delayed today so I may get into my goody drawer and have a snack. If I get too hungry I won't make good choices at lunch.

More later...

Monday on Tuesday

Sorry I didn't have a chance to post yesterday. I had my normal breakfast of granola, almonds, blueberries and vanilla yogurt. I'm sure that I'll get tired of it someday but so far I wake up wanting it every morning.

At lunch I didn't want what they had in the cafeteria but the Hop Shoppe makes the best hamburgers and I wanted one. I tried to talk myself out of it but I figured that one hamburger (there may have been fries as well) wouldn't kill me. I could be wrong. So I had the burger, fries and a large cup of summer fruits. I spent the afternoon fuller than I like.

At snack time I had a piece of Hershey's dark chocolate and about a cup of dry tasteless popcorn. By the time I got home I just wanted a big green monster so I made one waited a couple of hours and fixed a hummus, spinach and tortilla wrap followed by a cup of cantaloupe cubed with coarse ground black pepper.

We had bad thunderstorms and lots of wind yesterday. Topeka missed the worst of it but on the news they showed lots of pictures of storm damage. Some areas just south of us had 80-90 mph sustained winds. That's hurricane strength.

More later...

Friday, August 7, 2009

Taco Salad Yum

For lunch I had a deconstructed taco salad -

  • no shell, or chips
  • seasoned ground beef
  • chopped tomatoes and lettuce
  • a sprinkle of cheese and
  • lots of salsa

Then for dessert I had cubed watermelon - about a half pound. It was so sweet and juicy wish I'd gotten more.

I also went on a short walk around the hospital grounds. It's several blocks to get clear around the complex. If it wasn't the hottest time of the year I'd go farther.

More later...

'nother Friday

The Dillons store is just too convenient. I drive right by it on my way home and although it is a small neighborhood store I still stop there a few times each week. Last night I got organic carrots, organic blueberries, 2 Almond Breeze vanilla, an apple, sliced almonds, watermelon (chunks, not a whole one), and some brown rice. I fixed the rice (it was one of those 90 second microwave bags) and then heated up some Potato and chickpeas in a tomato sauce. It was quite tasty.

I also fixed a smoothie. I love this one. It's so easy and only 3 ingredients.

  • 1 cup vanilla yogurt (last night it was Stoneyfield's fat-free French vanilla)
  • 1/2 c orange juice
  • 4 ice cubes

Cold and refreshing.

This morning I had my usual yogurt mess.

  • 1 cup vanilla yogurt
  • 1/2 c blueberries
  • sprinkle of sliced almonds
  • 1/2 c Bear Naked Granola in Vanilla Almond Fit (can you see the theme here?)

I also am drinking a 20 oz diet coke. I feel the need for a caffeine fix.

I'm doing my library job from 8:30AM - 5:00PM and then I'm working on the floor from 7:00PM - 7:00AM. Hopefully I'll be able to get some reading done and maybe watch a little of the food channel. Has anyone else noticed that Good Eats hasn't been on at 7PM (CDT) this week. It's still on at 10PM. Is Alton losing his prime time slot? I hope not - I have a "thing" for him.

More later...

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Hugh Jass Salad

For lunch I hit up the salad bar and loaded up my lid (I put my stuff in the lid then top it with the plate. It's easier to get lots of stuff that way.) with baby spinach, some iceberg lettuce mix, shredded carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, fresh mushrooms, and a spoonful of sunflower seeds. I used Wish Bone Red Wine Mist salad spritzer. 1 big calorie per spray. I also ate a big bunch of red seedless grapes. I am comfortably full. I also took a hike around the hospital grounds for a little break. It's just in the low 80's right now so the walk was energizing rather than soggy/sweaty.

I have a small snack saved for later this afternoon. I get great snack ideas from Heather's blog.

Last evening when I got home I had a basic green monster. I wasn't hungry for four hours. I'm getting to the point where one of them is actually an entire meal. Good stuff.

More later...

Lovely Thursday

It was actually down in the 60's this morning. It felt so good to walk with the light breeze blowing. It's supposed to get near 100 today and I certainly won't enjoy walking then. I'll be hidden in my nicely a/c house.

This morning I had what was left of my Kroger's low-fat vanilla yogurt, 1/2 c of Kroger's low-fat granola, and 1/2 c frozen blueberries. I mixed it all in the yogurt container a la current trend. It was plastic instead of glass but it worked great.

Am still reading the Omnivore's Dilemma. I also pulled out the Dec 2008 issue of Fitness to motivate myself to do an upper body workout. Felt great afterward so I did 20 min of yoga on my own.

Have a pleasant day (tomorrow is Friday, yay)

More later...

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Buy local

Food, Inc.

I assumed that the theme for the film was going to be about the cruel way we treat animals who are going to become our food. I get mailings from PETA and have seen the photos of animals cramped into unclean areas, who are hardly able to move, standing ankle deep in their own excrement, and sickened by the food they are given. They are injected with hormones and antibiotics. I work in a hospital and I see what antibiotic resistant bacteria can do to the human body. It isn't pretty.

But the real focus of the film was "big business" and how four companies attempt to control every bite we eat. I threatened to boycott one of the big companies. I won't name them because I don't want to get sued for *definition* of character. My daughter informed me that I would have to give up eating and most other consumables products because the company is involved with everything. The company to which I am referring refused to be interviewed for the film. Paranoia you say? See the movie.

The best review I've read is here on Dori's Shiny Blog.

I'm going to buy as much as I can from local farmers and local companies. Ones that aren't run by the government or big business concerns. I am going to stay away from processed foods as much and as often as I can. The trailer was right -- it will change the way you look at food.

More later...

Monday, August 3, 2009

Food, Inc

My daughter and I went to see Food, Inc. on Friday. I was shocked that the theater was barely half filled. With all the blog reviews and comments I just figured that it would be a sell out. Saturday I started reading The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan. Both require much thought. We also went to Iwig's Family Dairy in Tecumseh, KS to check out their antibiotic and growth hormone free cows. I've always loved their milk and it was fun to see the local jams, noodles, chickens, honey and other goodies they carry in their shop. I'm going to work on a post tonight to let you know what I think about the whole issue. I doubt that I will ever use any milk products other than IWIG from now on. I got to see the cows in the pasture. They were feeding on natural grasses and alfalfa. They each have names and the hands know which cow goes with which names. My vote goes with the local farmer in this case.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Today's my Friday

I'm taking Friday off. It's my birthday and I don't work on my birthday. I have over 4 weeks of vacation saved up so one day won't even make a dent in the hours. My daughter and I are going to Lawrence to see Food, Inc and hopefully eat at the Mad Greek. Their hummus is my crack. They make it fresh everyday and they serve it with fresh lemon and warm pita wedges.

For breakfast this morning I had 1/2 cup Kroger low-fat granola (without raisins), a sprinkling of sliced almonds, 1/2 cup frozen organic blueberries, and 1 cup Kroger low-fat vanilla yogurt. I really love this meal. I had my daily can of diet Dr. K.

I think my problem yesterday was that I let myself get too hungry. I ended up going to lunch almost an hour late and I don't make good choices when I'm too hungry. Today I have some string cheese and a granola bar just in case. I'm going to replenish my snack drawer this weekend. I feel as though today won't be as hard.

More later...

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

I wish I hadn't

eaten that. For lunch I had frito chili pie, corn, and a cinnamon roll. It was the special in the Hop Shop. I love frito chili pie but I prefer my own. Now my stomach feels like it's got a brick in it and I'm generally uncomfortable. Payback. I know it's only one meal and I'll get right back to clean eating but I'm disappointed that I can't always make the right choices given what's put in front of me. Progress not perfection folks. Here's to finding the right track and getting back on it.

More later....

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Special K Meal Bar

Drat it, I'm out of Larabars. My director was going to the snack machine and I asked her to see if there were any bars to be had. She ended up going clear over to the gift shop where she found a Kelloggs Special K protein meal bar. Right on the packaging it says feel fuller longer. Don't believe it. The first clue to the ingredients was another announcement on the wrapper - naturally & artificially flavored. The ingredient list is as long as your arm. Contains milk, soy, wheat, egg, pecan, almond and peanuts. Plus a whole bunch of stuff I can't spell or pronounce.
180 calories
4 g sat fat
0 g trans fat
10 g protein
I won't buy this one again (it was $1.59). It was sickeningly sweet. The strawberry flavor was definitely artificially flavored. If you haven't tried these yet save your money buy Larabars instead and NO I'm not receiving anything from Larabars in exchange for singing their praises.
I'm off to the treadmil. Gotta get my time in.
I want to give a shout-out to Healthy Tipping Point and congratulations on her first blogoversary.
May you have many more.
More later...

Friday, July 24, 2009

Friday's Froyo

Just had to tell you all what I did this afternoon. My co-worker and I decided to go out at lunch and get G's Frozen Custard. It's a little locally owned place about 1/4 mile from the office. I called ahead and told the owner that I was trying to be healthy and I wanted to make G's a part of that and asked him what he could offer me. He told me about the low-fat frozen yogurt options. Four flavors at 120 cal for 6 oz. They could make their concretes with fresh fruit, natural peanut butter, and skim milk. Also, they had sugar-free syrups. I chose a single serving (6 oz) of the lemon froyo. It was excellent. I couldn't tell much difference between it and their lemon custard. Good choice. I'm proud of me.

A good weekend to ya'll...

TGIF - Take Two

I am very pleased with my food intake yesterday. I was up on fresh foods and felt good all day. For breakfast I had my usual granola, almond, blueberries and vanilla yogurt. I drank an actual diet coke. It tasted quite strong. I'm getting used to not drinking soda except for the one in the morning. I don't drink coffee so the diet coke is my caffeine for the day but since we got an ice machine I may cut out that morning pop.

For lunch I made a Hugh Jass salad from the salad bar. It had leafy greens, summer squash, cucumbers, carrots, broccoli and sunflower seeds. I popped open a light Italian dressing package and used it all (25 cal worth). Then I read the label. The third ingredient down was high fructose corn syrup. It really is ubiquitous isn't it? I also had a large cup of fresh summer fruits.

When I got home I fixed a green monster as an after work snack. I wasn't hungry til almost 8PM. Green monsters are quite filling. After Bones (the TV show) I fixed a plate with raw baby carrots (I'm addicted), a Lean Cuisine panini which was absolutely delicious and a bunch of green grapes. Then I read Julie and Julia til I fell asleep.

More later...

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Ice Machine

I just found out that we got an ice/water machine in our building. Hooray! It's on the second floor and I'm in the basement (they call it the garden level - classy, huh?) so it'll give me an excuse to walk up two flights of stairs. Assuming they get the main stairs fixed today like they're supposed to.

Daily Eats

Happy Thursday Folks.

My co-worker loaned me her copy of Folks yesterday and told me I'd laugh my socks off. Well, I watched it and I'm no longer wearing socks. ;-)

For breakfast my usual granola (I'm going back to Bear Naked after this box and I don't care that it's more expensive), with sliced almonds, organic frozen blueberries and vanilla low-fat yogurt. I've found that this breakfast holds me quite well 'til lunch and it's delicious to boot.

At lunch the cafeteria was having a luau so I had a fresh off the grill hamburger with lots of curly lettuce and tomatoes and a big cup of watermelon and pineapple mixed. I got hungry about 2:00PM and had an out-of-date yogurt. I don't remember what flavor. Then at 3:00PM I ate my daily Larabar. I had the Pecan Pie flavor. I could really taste the dates in this one, only 3 ingredients: dates, pecans, and something else.

When I got home I took out the trash, fed the cat, and fixed a big green monster. Then I sat down to read Texas Monthly and the latest Pillsbury cookbook (the one you can get at the check-out lane at the grocery). I used to love looking at all the pictures of food and now I'm finding that most of that stuff no longer appeals to me. I'm changing.

Later I fixed some raw baby carrots, an Almond Chicken lean cuisine, and a bunch of grapes. I also ate a half cup of Edy's slow churned lite ice cream. The container is now empty.

I did a great upper body workout. Lots of stretches and 5 lb weights were involved. My muscles were humming by the time I finished. I love workouts like that.

Today I'm going to focus on getting more fruits and vegetables. The last couple of days I haven't eaten as many serving and I find that I am missing them.

More later....

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Happy Hump Day

I can't believe it's Wednesday already.

Here's a quick rundown of what I ate yesterday. For breakfast I had my usual Kroger low-fat granola with raisins (tomorrow I'm picking out the raisins. I'm tired of nearly breaking a tooth every morning trying to chew them!), sliced almonds, frozen organic blueberries, and Kroger brand creamy vanilla yogurt. It's funny, everymorning the whey has come to the top of the container and I pour it off. Makes the yogurt very thick and creamy. Not as thick as Fage but much thicker than normal yogurt. I also had a can of diet Dr-K.

For lunch I had a pulled chicken sandwich, baked beans, and a cup of summer fruits - including strawberries, pineapple and cantaloupe. I also had a 32oz cup of ice water which I drank on all afternoon.

Mid-afternoon I ate one of our cafeteria's deliciously moist and chewy oatmeal cookies. They don't make them often and when they do the cookies sell out quickly. I grabbed one while I still could.

I got home and the weather was cool for Topeka in July, 73 degrees and overcast. I opened my mail and went for a walk around the park near my house. Today it's supposed to be much warmer. I ate some raw carrots, fresh cantaloupe and a wrap with hummus, spinach and sliced red peppers. They're so easy and so good.

After dinner I did a DVD that came in my latest issue of Fitness. I wasn't impressed but at least it was exercise. The quality of the recording wasn't good. The picture kept breaking up into pixels and skipping but then what do you expect from a free DVD.

Then it was time for NCIS which is one of my favorite shows. Of course, this time of year it was an episode I'd already seen so I kinda watched it while I read the July/August issue of Nutrition Action Health Letter. There's an article about why we overeat and a review section on ice creams and sorbets. I love that newsletter and read it faithfully. You can read some of their "classic" articles here. I wanted to keep all my back issues where I could read them anytime I wanted to so I added them to our collection at the library where any of our patrons can read them as well.

More later...

Monday, July 20, 2009

Tropical Fruit Tart Larabar

I just tried this new flavor. Holy yum! The pineapple, coconut, and orange just jumped out into my mouth. I would buy this one again and again. Can't wait til it's available on the website. The flavor of summer in a bar...

Dates, pineapple, unsweetened coconut, almonds, extra virgin coconut oil, cashews, orange juice concentrate, orange peel

It's gluten free, dairy free, soy free, non-gmo, vegan, and kosher. BUT NOT RAW. 210 calories, 5 g of fiber, sodium free, no added sugar, full serving of fruit.

Has anyone else tried it? What'd you think?

Food, Inc.

I just found out that I'm going to get to see Food, Inc. on my birthday. It's opening in Lawrence, KS (about 30 min from here) on Friday. I know it's going to be disturbing. I hate what they do to farm animals but I just feel that I have to witness it. Can't wait.

Friday, July 17, 2009

TGIF folks

I had another basic green monster when I got home yesterday. This time I added 3 ice cubes. It made it much thicker. Is it my imagination or do I really have more energy? I think I'll try it again tonight with some almond butter although I hate to mess with perfection. For dinner I cheated and had a Herbed Chicken Lean Cuisine, with raw carrots and a big hunk of watermelon while I watched "Bones" on TV. I love the Temperance Brennan series by Kathy Reichs. Except for the main character having the same name and being a forensic anthropologist it's nothing like the TV show. The books are the best. I've read them all and I'm not too patiently waiting for the next in the series.

Right now I'm reading Julie and Julia. It's about a woman who decides to cook her way through Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child. It's very good. I wanted to keep reading last night instead of getting much needed sleep which is a sign I'm thoroughly enjoying the book. The movie will be coming out soon. This is one I might just have to see.

Bon week-end...