Saturday, November 26, 2016

How Life Changes...Thank God!

Hello All - and I hope you had a very Happy Thanksgiving!! 

I love Thanksgiving - and perhaps later I will post about it, and how I was 98% clean eating on that holiday (yeah me...but boo my body who rebelled against the 2%!!)

But Today - my post is about one of the most amazing and special people in my life....My Husband, Dave.

Today is our 6th Wedding Anniversary and there is so much I need to say about this gorgeous man, and how he changed my life...  

And to do so - I'm going to revert back to that car ride on the way to Sharon's when I decided my life was made up of song lyrics...  

I was listening to the Broadway Channel on Sirius (Yes - the Broadway Channel.  Stop Laughing.).  Les Mis came on - and as some of you may know, I can sing that musical, word for word, every song- it is my favorite.  I was introduced to Les Mis in the late 80's or early 90's when our high school chorus sang some of the songs for our concert.  We also had gone to see the musical and I was completely hooked.  

The Song that came on was I Dreamed A Dream... I had always been so moved by this song. Always.  I did not have an easy teen years and my 20's weren't much better. I spent a lot of my time dreaming, day dreaming and writing about how it would be better.  How it could be better.  What I wanted, how I wanted it... but it just wasn't so - it was just dreams.  

This song... This lyric... "I had a dream my life would be - so different from this Hell I'm living - so different now from what it seemed...Now life has killed the dream I dreamed."

Back then, I could hardly sing this song with out tears, with out breaking down because, yes - I felt my life was hell**, it was horrible and I was ugly, unhappy, not worthy and not deserving of anything. It was if that song was baring my soul to how unhappy I was. I know why now - after a lot of work, and am working on making sure its all fixed - but that too is another post. 

(**Yes, please understand that I realize my "hell" is so very...minimal compared to the reality of what other people have gone through, to what the world has gone through, to the horrors that are out there... But you must know, to a struggling person - a teen and insecure 20 something year old... it was <and is> MY HELL and has left many, many scars.) 

So anyway, this song comes on (a few months ago) and I couldn't help but think - I do not feel that anymore.  I do not feel that at all. I have not felt that way in quite some time - years even. I feel like I am living a dream - I am living my day dreams -  I am living the stories that I have written.  I am living my dream come true - and my Happily Ever After.

Most of the reason (but - no... not all) is because of this man.  I say not all, because I had begun working on myself about two years before I met Dave.  I had accepted myself for who and what I am, how I looked and how my life was going at that time.   I accepted that I could love myself - which did account for a tremendous amount of change in my world.  Which lead to me believing in myself enough and putting myself out there - for online dating.

I wish I had a copy of the first picture I ever saw of him from his online profile. I say this bald headed, almost pirate looking man with one one eyebrow up, just needed an earring to complete the picture.  I knew just by looking at him that he was it. 

I'll save you the specific details, but I broke just about every rule I had when it came to online dating - for him.  We met with in one week for our first date at South of the Boarder.  It was a lovely date with good conversation - I kept my hands in my napkin for most of the time - Dave thinking I was nervous, but me - I was trying to keep my hands from reaching across the table and touching his head!  When I left the restaurant - I called my sister and my best friend and told them in no uncertain terms - I just met the man I was going to marry. 

We went on a few dates - and Dave got a bit spooked but I was still unwavering that this was my future. Again - details spared - but we began dating again in January - and have been together ever since. 

Before meeting Dave, I have never felt so special...I have never felt so beautiful...I have never felt so cherished...I have never felt so lifted up...I have never felt so taken care of...I have never felt so I do when I am with him. He is my home and my safe place. 

I had never known someone (who was my partner) who was able to put someone else before them selves the way I did (we both still do - and as amazing as it is - it can be frustrating - but again, that is another post!).  Dave has the ability to light up a room, his smile makes my soul light, his laugh makes me laugh and when he touches my hand - (even now, 12 years later), I get goose bumps and butterflies in my stomach.  His love for life is contagious, his love for others and his ability to be there for anyone at a moments notice is amazing.  He has such a gregarious personality that is addicting and infectious. He makes anyone in his company feel like they are the only one in the room with him - and that they are his focus.  I know all of what I say - to those who have known Dave for his entire life, or to those who have just met him -  is nothing new - for anyone who knows Dave - they know its true.  The goodness of his very soul just radiates around him and wraps you up in his big bear hugs.

I'm just the lucky one who gets to feel like that every single minute of every single day - for the rest of my life.

I knew the day he asked me to marry him was on of the most special days of my life. We knew we would be together, we knew we loved each other, but that this man wanted to make it official meant the world to me.  

The day we got married - was the most amazing day of my life.  I can remember every nanosecond of that day. Some times it is like a slow motion movie in my head - each detail of that day, the day he became my Husband... is more vivid than any rainbow, any sunset, any sunrise.   LOL... I remember being upstairs at our Venue with Dave downstairs - because we were waiting on a the flower delivery so we could do the 'reveal'.  I didn't want to wait one more second to see the love of my life (after being away from him for the night) and I pulled my sister aside and told her that I didn't give a fuck about the flowers, that she needed to tell the photographer to get it together for the reveal asap or I was walking on down stairs to my man and pictures be damn! 

This is my most absolute favorite picture of us - our first dance as a married couple
and I literally just said to him... I can't believe I am your WIFE!!! 

This man is my whole world.  I thank God and the Goddess every single day for bring him into the Emilyverse.  He makes the Emilyverse possible.  He gets and understands the Emilyverse, more than I do - and that is an amazing feat.  He knows all about the girls in my head and he accepts they are apart of me and accepts me for who I am; he doesn't point out my flaws and faults (though he may laugh at them, and helps me be able to laugh at them too), but accepts them just as clearly as he accepts me.  He is my rock, my foundation, my support in such a way that I feel like the child of Wonder Woman and the Hulk (no offence to my parents!).  

No amount of words that I can say, write or think can ever fully express what this amazing human being means to me.  My heart is so full and he is the reason, he is every reason. 

We have always told each other that "you are my love, my life, my heart, my soul".  No truer words have ever been spoken - he is my world.  He is my Universe. 

David, "These three words, Are said too much, They're not enough.  If I lay here,  If I just lay here, will you lie with me and just forget the world?"

and as always... our song...

"You and me together, we could do anything, Baby.  You and me together, yes, yes.

We can always look back at what we did
All these memories of you and me baby
But right now it's you and me forever girl
And you know we could do better than anything that we did
You know that you and me, we could do anything.

You and me together, we could do anything, Baby - the Two of us together, we could do anything."

These "not enough" words will have to do - I love you, David.  I completely adore you.  You are my whole heart, my entire soul, my very life - Thank you for loving me; for being mine.  I am the luckiest person in any Universe because I have you by my side. 

Happy Anniversary my most amazing love.  You are a gift to this world and I am lucky enough to be apart of it and to share you with it. 

Until Next Time...
Mrs. David Taylor

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

I Joined the Cult & I Drank the Kool-Aid...

Hi There,  

I hope everyone is doing fine... I am.  Really, I am.  I've been feeling good and I attribute it to more than just my clean eating.  

I joined the Smoothie Cult. ;)

And I feel good! (And a bit resentful...I'll get back to that at a later post.)

I've been doing a lot of reading about having smoothies for breakfast (or lunch for that matter) and was a bit iffy on trying it.  First - I just have a regular blender and they say (they - who are they??) that it doesn't crush up the ice and other ingredients enough.  Yeah, and who wants to chew their smoothie... so no thank you.  Second - after a lifetime of Carnation Instant Breakfasts and Slim Fast shakes, I simply don't have the stomach for the powdery, chalky, ground cardboard flavor of protein powders that haunt my childhood and teen memories.

My friend Kristy turned me on to one thing that changed my mind a bit.  The NutriBullet! She swears by it and I look it up online.  Um - NO, I'm not going out and spending $150.00 on something to grind up fruit and ice - seriously people.  

But then - Macy's did have it on sale for 99.99, and a friend had a discount coupon that I was able to use...and I did have a gift card to Macy's.  So low and behold, I buy my NutriBullet for about $50.00.  Step one...Check. 

Protein Powder.  I have zero clue which is a good one or bad ones - so Kristy offers to give me a taste test of the two she uses, so I can test it out with out a huge financial commitment. Very cool.

Except - my very cute, very loving, very sweet, very Un Cool dogs...

...are Dicks. I get home with my NutriBullet and walk in to this:

Protein Powder all over the place!

I do get it... I left the two Ziploc bags on the counter, where one of them (likely Sam, the taller one) can sit on the sofa, reach his head over the pass through and take them off the counter.   I don't get that they freaking know they're not allowed to do this and always feel terrible when I get home and say "What the Fuck?!?"  But I take a deep breath and calmly take the cover off the dog bed, shake it out side and sweep up.  Smoothie will have to wait til next day when I can just go out and buy some protein powder and try it out. 

I get a bit too busy to go to the store and my other friend brings in a bag of the protein powder she uses (it was one of the same ones Kristy had given me).

OK - time to finally try this awesome smoothie! 

Then... BAM!!

No - I am not kidding - the Dicks did it AGAIN!!  This was left on a different counter (one they'd actually have hop up on their two front paws) to get to - and it was all the way at the back of the counter! I can leave anything on that counter and it doesn't get touched - but the freaking sniff out the protein powder?!?!  I swear - the two of them laugh at me the minute I walk out the door and conspire all day as to what they can do to piss me off when I get home. 

So - Stop and Shop, here I come and I buy a random brand of vanilla powder and all the other items I would need to try out my very first Protein Smoothie... so I can at least get this thing up off the ground - so finally... Step two... Check. 

Step three - Preparation.  Of course that goes hand and hand with clean eating, so I set up my Zip lock bags and get ready to put my ingredients in them.  In each bag goes:

1 cup of Spinach  

1/2 (or 1 - depending on how many I had!) of a Banana with 1 cup of mixed, frozen, no sugar added berries.  (This was strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries)

2 tablespoons of plain Greek Yogurt (I froze mine ahead of time to make life easier, each section of my ice cube tray is one tablespoon)

Then I froze the baggies.  The next morning, I took one bag out - put it in my Bullet container, along with:

1 tablespoon of Almond Butter
1/2 teaspoon of Cinnamon
1 Scoop of the random protein powder 
1 1/2 cups of Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk.

I let the bullet do its thing -and out comes my Smoothie!  I love that with everything frozen already - I don't need to add any ice so its not watered down at all and it tastes... delicious. Sort of. 

I've been 'suffering' through this protein powder that I purchased and it is OK... it does taste like I'm drinking powder.   The other flavors mask it well (especially the one day I left out the Almond butter - it was like... grainy and dry) but I can still tell its there (though adding a touch of honey to it helps!).  

I am finding though, that I really do enjoy having my smoothie in the morning and it keeps me very full - so full that I have not really snacked in the mid morning and it is almost a fight to eat all of my lunch.  So I take that as a win!  Last week, I had a smoothie every morning except Sunday when Dave and I went out to breakfast.  I had a piece of whole grain toast with avocado and one egg.   It was delicious - but I missed my smoothie.  I'd been feeling pretty energized in the mornings and that Sunday I felt different.  So I smoothied for lunch and all was right in the world!  

Now I have jumped in and bought the protein powder that my friends recommended - sight untasted thanks to Sam and Lilah.  It is supposed to be delicious and I am hoping so because it is a bit pricey (though will last for a full month - so I'm told).  It was just delivered to my house today - so I'll update this tomorrow and let you know how it goes.  

And - one day soon, I'll try a new smoothie recipe - but I do like the flavors in this one a lot - so why switch up if I'm enjoying myself!  

Until Next Time...
EAT (or...Drink!!)

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

My Life Seems Like a Bunch of Music Lyrics

Hi there,

Ever have those days when you hear a song or a lyric and think,  "Yes!  Exactly it!" or it makes you tear up thinking how much you can relate to it?  

Yup.  Today is one of those days.  (Well, it was one of those days a few weeks ago when I first started writing this blog! So here is the finished product...) 

Call it moody, call it emotional, call it PMS... but today nearly every single song has made me have a visceral reaction to it.  

And of course - I had to go online to look up how to spell visceral and up pops an article on word usage - Visceral vs Emotional. So maybe it is emotional not visceral, but now that I know how to spell visceral, and it sounds so much better than plain old emotion - I've been called emotional my entire life - I'm sticking with visceral.   See - I've used visceral seven times now - Now that is good word usage!

It all started with the ride home from my doctor's office (where I went to give Crazy girl a bit of attention) and it turned out that most of the girls living in my head needed a bit of attention today.  For anyone who is or has gone to therapy,  you know that it can be pretty deep sometimes.  Working on one's self is hard work...growth is painful and while the end result (we hope) is worth it all - it still sucks. Yes. Growth. Sucks.  It is necessary, it does wield good outcomes....but the process sucks.  Plain and simple. 

Lazy girl would like me to interject here that she is perfectly fine not doing any of the work - she's happy as she is...  Lazy girl needs to shut it. She is 1/2 (or maybe 3/4) of the reason we need to work on ourselves.  Rational Girl wants to take some of the blame too.. Hell, I'll let them all take the blame - but ultimately - I have to suck it up and do the work.    

Well anyway, riding with the radio on and Pink's song "Fuckin' Perfect" is on and brings me to tears. I love this song.  There is so much in this song that should be a damn mantra for every single person... "Pretty, pretty please don't you ever, ever feel like your less than fucking perfect". (Oh, and by the way, I think its time we should be able to sing fuck on the radio with out them blanking it out - most kids know this word before the age of 5 anyway - but I digress...) 

Sometimes we all need to hear that...we should never fell less than anything...We are enough. We are flawed.  We are messed up but we are enough.  I am enough in all my flawed ways.  Most definitions of perfect say "having no defects or flaws".  I'm sorry - only a person with a God Complex THINKS they don't have flaws...  but everyone and nearly everything in this world is flawed... (nearly:  because we can make an exception for babies...and puppies... kittens...and baby elephants!! Oh, baby pygmy goats... OK-OK-OK... baby anything (except snakes and spiders) can be perfect in the Emilyverse).  But that then begs the question to be asked...Who said anything has to be perfect, or has to be perfect all the time?

And just what the fuck is perfect anyway?  

I googled (of course I did!) the word and the first definition that came up was:  

having all the required or desirable elements, qualities, or characteristics; as good as it is possible to be

I can actually accept that definition - because the "required or desirable elements, qualities or characteristics" are different for every single person.  Every.Single.Person.  AND - no person has the right to push their own requirements on another.  No.One. 

I love the second part better: "Perfection is as good as it is possible to be."  Who measures that in me?   NO-FUCKING-ONE.  I measure that in myself.  I try to be the best possible version of me as I can and that is pretty darn close to my definition of perfect.  Perfectly Imperfect!  Welcome to Emily. 

But perfection seems to be the reason why is it that we are hard on ourselves the most.  We strive for something that maybe we can't yet define for ourselves, when we should just love ourselves the most?  Oh and I am so hard on myself - I've struggled a lot over the last 12 years to try as hard as I could/can to put myself first and love myself first.  I don't succeed as much as I want to.  Some of the "unmentionables" come out...and can be very discouraging to me. 

"You're so mean when you talk about yourself, you are wrong.  Change the voices in your head, make them like you instead."   

I feel very lucky that I've been able to change those voices slowly, with all this fucking hard work and over the course of years - but they still rear their ugly head now and again and it can be a flight for the rest of us to beat them back down again. 

Negative Girl.
Worthless Girl.
Doubt Girl.
Angrier Girl (different from the healthy Angry girl - meaning angrier than I have a right to be).
Bitter Girl.
Judgmental Girl.
Nasty Bitch Girl.

and the worst...


She is the worst for me. I can take on the others every God Damn day and win - but She is the one who wakes up all the others at the same fucking time when she wants them to come out and play.  She is the one who wants to take away all of  my self worth and throw it out the window.  She is the one who wants to murder Happy Girl.  She is the one who makes Self-Sabotage Girl jump up and shout.  She is the one who wants me to believe I don't deserve Love Girl, or to be loved. 

She is the one I'm gunning for with all of this hard work.  And if all that happens is that I get rid of her - now that's what I call GROWTH!!! 

So far - she lingers - But I am reaping some other benefits of helping and working on myself. So I'm taking that win right here and right now.  I accept those benefits and would like Thank the academy, my family and friends, my therapist... 

And still - I'll continue to be working on Killing #WFTOSTDG. One murder I won't regret.

I have so many songs and quotes that I could pester you all with - but Resolution Girl is saying this one song is enough. She is satisfied that the mess of a start on this post has come to an end.  She says I can incorporate other songs and quotes in other blogs and not make this one 400 pages long - so I am going to listen to her today.

Things to ponder for future blogs though - I was told two or three times in the last few days how strong I am and what courage I have. It's laughable to me because if I am so strong, why do I feel so weak? What is Strength? Why do others think I have it?  A few questions that will be answered at some point in the future.

So for now,  I'll end with...

"Pretty, pretty please...

If you ever, ever feel, 

Like you're nothing, 

you're fucking perfect to me."

Until Next Time...
EAT (perfectly imperfect and loving every minute of it)

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Clean Eating Begins again...

Hi There,

It has been a busy few weeks and busy in my world means getting lazy.  I've been so good with eating as cleanly as possible since the last challenge but these past two-ish weeks has been harder and harder...  I've done it the best I could but being too busy to prepare has made me realize that I won't let Lazy girl win - and I need to take the time - MAKE the time to prep so that I can be as clean as I can be when I eat. 

As if the Universe outside of my own was listening - my friend who had started me on the Clean Eating Challenge back in August decided to start up another...longer challenge. 

"This clean eating challenge group will run from Oct 17-Dec 22nd, 2016 We are preparing our minds, bodies and spirit for a healthier new year.

Studies show that most people gain a significant amount of weight between Oct-Dec. Why? there are 3 holidays and people often give in well past the 1 day event. This groups is about support first. Second, its about education. Learning about clean eating and the benefits of adopting this life style. Third, its about commitment. This is not my group, its our group. members are expected to post daily, share tips, ideas, support, encouragement, photos and success. We have to help each other. We will get to our goal."

This comes to me exactly when I needed it.  I realized that what I missed most was the support...those people who know what I am doing and why; who feel some of what I am feeling; who understand the frustrations, the joys, the sense of pride when you get through a day being 100% clean.  The support that keeps me committed to the lifestyle change I have decided that I needed in my life.

This challenge comes to me when:

  • I've just hit the mark of loosing 29 pounds since January (pounds I wasn't looking to loose but is a happy side effect!). 
  • When I've had to break out my jeans and pants for the cool weather (cause I've been wearing dresses all summer) and they are swimming on me... (like so crazy big that I had to throw out all but two pair of my jeans and work pants!).  
  • When I've just come back from shopping for pants and have gone down a full pant size! 

I am well beyond thrilled that my decision to eat better has caused such amazing changes - but the change I am most proud of is my attitude.  I am strong enough to do this and maintain this lifestyle change - this new challenge will help me take this new habit and solidify it as my new normal. 

So in prep for my new normal - I'm making a new recipe for my clean eating this week. 

Apple Banana Quinoa Breakfast Cups


½ cup applesauce
1 cup mashed banana (about 3 bananas)
1 banana for slicing
1 cup cooked quinoa (about ½ cup dry)
2 ½ cups old-fashioned oats
½ cup almond milk
¼ cup honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon
1 apple, peeled and chopped

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease a muffin tin (I use olive oil).
Cook the quinoa. Bring ¾ up water to a boil, pour in ½ cup dry quinoa, reduce to a simmer until fluffy—about 12 minutes.
Mix applesauce, mashed banana, almond milk, honey and vanilla in a bowl.
Mix dry ingredients (quinoa, oats, cinnamon) in a separate bowl. Slowly stir the wet into the dry until fully combined.
Peel core and chop up an apple. Mix the apple chunks into the bowl.
Fill each of the muffin cups to the top with the quinoa mixture. Add a banana slice or two to the top of each.
Bake for 20-25 minutes.
Let cool for 5 minutes, then enjoy one warm!

Store in an airtight container in the fridge. Reheat leftovers in the microwave before eating. You can also add some crushed pecans or walnuts to these--experiment!  (These quinoa breakfast cups are delicious and filling—each one is dense, so it only takes one (or, ok, maybe two) to satisfy morning hunger. You can eat them like a muffin, or break one up in a little bit of warm almond milk and eat it like oatmeal)

Apple Banana Quinoa Breakfast Cups:
(This picture and recipe was originally posted to the blog)

I'll show you mine in the next few days and let you know how they are.  I won't be posting daily about this challenge, but I will be posting a bit more regular as I like to have the accountability to help this all work. 

Well - off to watch the Walking Dead rundown before the season premier next week.  Hope you all have a great week and I'll chat with you soon!

Until Next Time...
EAT (new recipes!)

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Who Says I have to Post That?

Hi All,

It's been a while - let me tell you a few reasons why.  Last week, I had an idea in the car driving home from Sharon's office (I've mentioned her here before - even shared some of her "Sharon-isms").  I sat and wrote about it...but got a bit stuck.  It is such a random idea that I wasn't so sure where to go with it - so in typical Emily fashion - I just stopped it...tabled it...put it on the back burner.  

Never once did it occur to me that ... "Hey Em, you don't have to publish that now.  You can revisit it later and just move on to something else." 

Duh. Really...  D.U.H.  

Who says I have to ever post that?  ME.  
Who says I can't have an idea and just let it go.  ME.
Who says I what I can and can not do.  ME
Hello, Emily in the Emilyverse - this is YOUR place.  

That means I get to do what ever I want with the post.  If I decide to publish it, Fine.  If not, Fine too.  I really do think I will publish it...when Crazy girl shuts up because she's made it so random that the rest of us can't get our own two cents in and we're having a hard time understanding the point.  And Resolution girl likes to have all her questions answered before she moves on - she needs a point of view.   That post right now doesn't have one yet.   Though it is a great idea, so I will clean it up when I find some internal duct tape -keep an eye out for it - I've entitled it "My Life Seems Like a Bunch of Music Lyrics".

So my time since then - was interesting.  I had a meeting that was one I never thought I would be having; it felt awkward leading up to it; it was emotional in the before, during and after; it was informative; it was things I needed to hear; it was difficult - and No, I will not be telling you about it for the moment.  I had an actual visceral reaction to this meeting. (I just thought HA! I did it again, but you won't understand the visceral thing until I publish that Music post... sigh.

I'm telling you this as it really lead me into a bit of a "tale spin" of thinking - if you will. Thinking about choices.  Why do we make the choices we do?  What leads us to those choices? 

 "With every decision you take, every judgement you make, there is a battle in your mind - a battle between intuition and logic."

I read this recently and found it interesting... Is it between intuition and logic?  Because what if the choice you make doesn't seem to be apart of that battle at all?  If I make a choice based on my intuition, my gut (which Yes, I do regularly) there wouldn't be a battle in my head because I don't let logic in.  Or do I and I don't realize it?  I don't think I do because sometimes there is no explaining away what seems like the strangest choice when I've let my gut take control - which means logic wasn't near being present for its side of the battle...(or is it Crazy girl?  Sometimes I can't tell the difference!). 

So Yes - I googled "why do we make the choices we do" because - I mean you can google anything and if its on the Internet, it must be the truth, right?   ;)

I did come across part of a BBC article that I found interesting... and YES - I'm posting it here for an easier read.  Your Welcome. 
“Prof Kahneman and his late colleague Amos Tversky, who worked at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Stanford University, realized that we actually have two systems of thinking. There's the deliberate, logical part of your mind that is capable of analyzing a problem and coming up with a rational answer.
This is the part of your mind that you are aware of. It's expert at solving problems, but it is slow, requires a great deal of energy, and is extremely lazy. Even the act of walking is enough to occupy most of your attentive mind.

If you are asked to solve a tricky problem while walking, you will most likely stop because your attentive mind cannot attend to both tasks at the same time.
But then there is another system in your mind that is intuitive, fast and automatic. This fast way of thinking is incredibly powerful, but totally hidden. It is so powerful, it is actually responsible for most of the things that you say, do, think and believe.
And yet you have no idea this is happening. This system is your hidden auto-pilot, and it has a mind of its own. It is sometimes known as the stranger within.
Most of the time, our fast, intuitive mind is in control, efficiently taking charge of all the thousands of decisions we make each day. The problem comes when we allow our fast, intuitive system to make decisions that we really should pass over to our slow, logical system. This is where the mistakes creep in.”
And oddly enough - this make sense to me.  It makes sense to Lazy girl.  It makes Crazy girl a bit intimidated because I take away from this that when making a choice - I need to slow down a bit.  Let that attentive part of my mind that likes to just chill, do some of the work for a change.  

And as I am reading this to proof...add, take away - My body is telling me I made the absolute wrong choice for lunch today.  I've been so good - and really eating 90%-95% clean every day since the challenge ended. So why oh why did I choose today to not pack my lunch - and order from the deli?   Why did I not choose to get a salad with some grilled chicken?  Why did I think it was a good idea to order a corned beef Ruben sandwich? And eat 3/4th's of it? With a side of Russian Dressing? 

I will spare you any bit of detail of how my stomach is yelling at me.  But know I am fully understanding the consequences to my instinctual choices right about now. 

My friend is starting up her challenge again - though this is more than a 30 day deal.  It's to help us get through the holidays and not slide backward.  Yeah!  Though this time it is Clean Eating and Fitness (yup - you bet I told her I'd do the eating part - but the mention of fitness just made my Lazy girl pass out!)... So I will be more accountable for what I put in my mouth and my body.  I will, of course, share here - not all the time or every day... but I plan to support and be supportive... to be accountable for the food choices I make and try out and experiment with different recipes.  Aren't you lucky?!?  ;)

Well, that's it for this installment in the Emilyverse.  Stay tuned... more to come with less time between.

Until Next Time....
EAT (logically)

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Day 1 - Challenge-less... (um, who are we kidding??)

Hi All,

I say challenge-less as our 30 day challenge for eating clean ended August 30th...  But seriously, who am I kidding... certainly not you guys - we all know life is full of challenges.

So I guess I should say - Welcome to Real Life.  The count up has now ended and we deal with Life - Full of challenges, forks in the road, bumps, twists and turns, ups and downs and a whole lot of love, fun, laughter, tears and slobbery doggies noses.  

Welcome to the Emilyverse.

First some things that I want to say about the clean eating Challenge: 
  • I learned that preparation is absolutely key to eating clean,  and one day of prep makes all the other days much easier to handle.  When the decision has been make already and the breakfast and lunches are packed - it literally becomes a no brainier. 
  • Eating Clean doesn't mean flavorless, texture-less crappy meals... Quite the opposite. Full of fresh flavors, there really wasn't anything that I missed out on.  I was never deprived, and often time so full I couldn't eat all that I had prepared.
  • You will have much more energy after eating clean
  • You may not go into this for weight loss, but I'm sure you will lose weight.
I didn't go into this for weight loss (as you've read about in my previous posts).  I found out about this challenge just as my husband was first told he may have diabetes.  After taking blood, our doctor advised him to immediately to quit the carbs, white starches and sweets and he will then re-test to see where his levels lie. 

It is our hope that with the Doctors advice we'll be trying to handle this with a change in diet and eating... .  We have a lot of learning to do and will be seeing a Diabetic Nutritionist in the next week or so... but at the time we heard this was a possibility, this challenge came into my sights and I decided it fit with what I would need to be doing moving forward.  

I am so glad I did.  I've lost 9 pounds in one month doing this challenge.  Overall since January, I've lost a total of 26 pounds.  Pounds I wasn't really looking to loose, (as you mush have read in "I'm OK with that") but now that they are gone - I'm pretty OK with them staying gone. If more go - fine.  Not so fine if they come back, so I'll make sure I am very aware of what I am doing from now on. 

I feel good eating clean - so I will continue to do so.  Will I have a bit of something here and there that isn't considered clean?  Yup.  But when I do so - it will be my choice, it will be in moderation and it will not be reverting back to unhealthy eating.  It will be done with a plan!

SO - where I left off from my last blog of clean eating was going out to dinner to celebrate my friend Dianna's milestone birthday.  Happy 50 Dianna!!  We took a ferry over to Fire Island and had dinner at a place called Flynn's.  It was a nice buffet where I ate as clean as I possibly could...  :)  1/2 a lobster, baked halibut, prime rib...I did have one baked clam and I did eat a piece of bread from the bread basket... but not half bad for a night out and I'm happy with my choices on my last day of this challenge.  I ate as clean as I could. 

So... Pictures.. 

The boat... The MoonChaser
On the Boat

Fire Island Light House
Group Shot at sunset

Now I'm going to bore you with my last few days...  :) <Oh come on, you're not bored... ;)>

Thursday afternoon Jet Blue was kind enough to take me up to Rochester (for a fee of course!) where I was met at the airport by Mom.  I am spending the Labor Day weekend up at Keuka, helping her close up the cottage.  

OH - if you are new to this blog, you may not know much about Keuka Lake and what it means to my family and I...  But you can read about it  Here....... and Here... Or Here... ... OH..or Here ....  ...Or absolutely HERE (which I'll be referencing at the end of this post). or at an almost obnoxious (who, me??) rate on my FB  page, pictures currently!!

It is my happy place.  It is one of the two places on earth (the Other being...Wrapped in my husband's arms), that I fell the most at home, happy, content, at peace and at one with all the universe. Everything is right with the world, and how could it not be when this is what I'm looking at:
And this is where I am blogging from:

The only things missing are my three partners in crime, Dave, Sam and Lilah:
my world
This is my very first time in 12 years that I've been at the lake with out Dave.  
And the first time in my LIFE that I've been at the lake and my dogs (either family dogs when I was young, or mine since I've had my own) aren't here.  

It is very, very strange for me. 

Dave had to work and since we just got back from Maine...
in case you didn't see Maine

Someone had to stay home and make some money and take care of the pups and cat.  I'm quite certain he would trade places with me in a heartbeat!!  And yes - I'd have let him, if it were possible. 

So - Mom picked me up and we drove to the cottage by way of first - stopping off at the store to get me some of my clean eating staples; and second, by having dinner at the Switz, a local Keuka restaurant.  And there, my friends is where I had my first bit if Pasta in over a month!! I only at a few bites of the angle hair (and oh, was it delicious!!) but I mostly ate the sauteed shrimp and scallops that were on top of it - done with lots of garlic and some olive oil - a really good "welcome home" dinner, if I do say so myself!  

OK, Break time as it is hot in this sun and with not a cloud in the sky... I need to take a dip!


and a bit of a stretch...

Friday - Day one of project close cottage started for me with a clean breakfast. The stores up here have all summer been running specials on berries - buy two, get three free!  So I got two big boxes of strawberries, two of blueberries and one of blackberries and made a huge bowl of mixed berries with a bit of lemon juice to eat while I am here.  I had that along with my yogurt and chia... but.. not my usual yogurt and chia.  My sister and said while we were up in Maine (and after a discussion that the only yogurt they had at breakfast was regular, not Greek, yogurt and I couldn't eat it!!) that she had switched over to Siggi's yogurt.  It is Icelandic style yogurt - I had seen it in the store and never paid attention to it - but when I was in the store up here, they had it on sale so I figured, why not?  It has more protein than my current yogurt but also a few more grams of sugar (2)... but less on the ingredient list.  I was happy with that.  So my yogurt was this Siggi's Mixed Berries and Acai... and my Chia was a mix (as it was the only chia they had)... a Chia mix that I don't have in front of me now... but it was really, really good!  I have a new favorite clean breakfast!!

We did some work to clean up and pack up the back of the cottage and after a store run we had a lunch of Mozzarella and tomato salad with hummus and chips.  My chips were from Saffron Road and were Lentil and Chick Pea chips that were so good.  Not a usual chip fan (other than Tostidos) but I will go back for these again!

I took in some dock time on a gorgeous day:

and Dinner was a lovely Cobb salad with roasted chicken breast, avocado, feta cheese, tomato, egg and cucumber.  So filling - and I got Mom to eat clean for two meals!!  She just went along with the flow - but it was a good flow!

I spent the evening last night with an old friend and a new friend - and was super glad to see them!  Todd used to live next door to us here at Keuka and we've spent many a summer with our siblings, paling around and having fun... we even had a great summer in NY one year when he came down to NYC to intern.  As usual, his parents moved (just down the lake a bit) and life happens and  so the "see you next summer" ritual went dormant for a few years.   

Thank Goodness for Facebook we have reconnected and we've made sure these past two years to see each other in the summer time.  While he had met Dave once before...years ago - last year Dave and I met his lovely wife Katie for the first time.  This year, we did meet up in early July when Dave and I were up here for vacation...  but I was the lucky one and got to see them again.  Time with old friends and new friends (who are now no longer new - Katie's an old friend too!) is one of the best gifts a girl can get.  

I'm routing for them to bring the Kids and Sam (the dog) to Long Island for a visit - Oh, what a time we could show them!!!  

And now on to today - are you with me still?  I try not to have my blogs be so long (and hopefully not boring, though I joke they are - cause really, who wants to read about me.. ??) 

Well, congrats if you are - I'd probably would have stopped by now cause I'm not nearly as funny and entertaining as The Bloggess and Beyonce the metal chicken (and SERIOUSLY: If you've never read this - take a moment and do so.  First time I did, I nearly peed myself laughing!) 

"Knock-Knock Mother Fucker" ...  You'll get it if you read it!

But Maybe someday I can be - if I really let all the girls in my head loose, said 'Fuck it' and let them take over. (Oh, Swear girl!)

But then you'd realize how nuts I really am... 

Not that I care - I am nuts... (Hi, Crazy girl)

But its much harder to swallow when all the personalities come out and play... 

I feel sorry for Dave.  

But maybe he likes it...

Shut up, Kinky girl. 

Ok.  Me - Emily...  Up and at 'em early on Saturday...8am so that we can wake up, have breakfast and go visit Grandma.  Another clean meal (for Jacqie too! Oh.  Jacqie is Mom, by the way) of Egg Mugs and Avocado toast.  Egg mugs - an old and easy favorite from the Weight Watcher years of two eggs in a mug with some cheese (cheddar and swiss) that is nuked for a minute or so, stirred and nuked again for another minute - presto!  Instant Omelets - in a mug. Two eggs for each of us and one slice of Oat Wheat Bread and mashed avocado for us both - and we both couldn't eat it all!  So much protein and such a good meal and it was too much. 

We drove the hour to see Grandma, who had a recent accident a few days ago.  

At 99 and 1/2 years young, she has taken to flipping herself out of her bed (that is surrounded by two huge bed sized pillows and is only inches from the ground with mats on the floor - yes, she has done this before!) and this time she nailed the landing by slamming her head on her Oxygen tank.  

Yup - this is Grandma post fall...

Thank goodness she is OK.  She isn't in any pain and they'e done neurological testing on her and was all good.   And Grandma today - her color is better (and now looking much more like she is a rainbow of colors vs being on the loosing side of a bar brawl). 

We then had lunch with my Mother's older sister, Joyce and her daughter Debbie.  

OK, so my Mom doesn't have an older sister... but that is how they refer to themselves.  Joyce is the lovely lady who was my grandmother's aid for years and years prior to her stint in the assisted living place, which ultimately led to her place in the nursing home.  

Joyce used to help out my Grandma a few days a week. "Help Out" is code for they'd get into lots of trouble together because they are both stubborn, independent ladies who liked to have fun and laugh together while slipping up icy long driveways neither of them should have been on... but ultimately, the house got cleaned, errands got run and neither of them killed themselves or each other.  Thus - Joyce is family... and we had a nice visit before ultimately returning to the Lake, got the ceiling fan blades all cleaned and then I took my lake break to finish my blog. 

Yup.  Life is good right now.  I should do this blogging thing full time... and I would if someone would pay me for it - and I could see a view like this all the time... 

OH - and as for the above mentioned post that I said I'd mention again - I'm going to Bully Hill for lunch tomorrow.   YUP, I'm excited.  and YUP, what I eat won't be 100% clean - but my breakfast will and my dinner will - so I'm OK with that.   And I know this meal is the memory of many amazing meals here - So I'm EXCITED!!  :)

I'll leave you with my view tonight...
Happy Cloudless Sunset

Until Next Time...
EAT (Lentil Chips with Hummus, as I am right now!)