I live in the South which means that it doesn’t get cold until later and when it does, it isn’t all that cold. It also means that some leaves have started to fall off the trees, but there are plenty more where those came from.
Today is sunny with wispy clouds streaking a bright blue sky. It is also windy. My wind chimes are making lots of noise outside my window as I type. But I knew it was windy before because as I was leaving the development to get to the store, the leaves were falling like rain. It was such a pretty sight. They were swirling through the sky like large snowflakes and without the bitter cold.
Part of the Whole Life Challenge was to appreciate the world around me. I have tried, although not consistently, to notice the beauty of the world, the simplicity of nature, and the wonder of living here and now. Today I was struck by the who shebang.
I was buying food and once again I noticed that while the WLC is over, I have actually incorporated many things into my life over the eight weeks. I bought a second small saucepan today which doesn’t sound very momentous, but it is. It was a conscious choice to eat different stuff. Dick hated the quinoa and I liked it. He doesn’t want to eat it ever again and I do.
Tomorrow, I want to have ham and broccoli and then have quinoa. He can have rice. I have three different saucepans already, but how do you cook one serving of either of those in a two or three quart pan and not burn it to death. I needed another smaller pan. I spend money like we have it. Okay, it was $8 and not going to break the bank. The bigger problem I had at the store was deciding if I had a good place to keep it when not in use.
I also bought some more natural, no sugar added, peanut butter for me and some Jif peanut butter for him. This is a choice. I have learned how to make the stuff without sugar taste good buy stirring in some Stevia. Duh. But it tastes wonderful on my apples and so, I enjoy it.
I have butter for me and margarine for him. He eats bread and I don’t. While I was on this challenge, Thomas’s changed the recipe for their English muffins and they simply do not taste right which I thought at first was just me after eight weeks of no bread. But they don’t cut right either and so I don’t think it is me. I’m trying to decide what to do about no bread with my eggs and I think I will just have to scramble them.
I’m still drinking almond milk and have no problem with it. I like it in my coffee and I’ve tried cooking with it and it seems to work okay. I’m sure when I go to make the next batch of Beer Cheese Soup, I will get my regular pint of 1/2 and 1/2 and make the soup the right way because I sure don’t want to ruin a batch of that.
I’ve been eating dried fruit and been less diligent about the sugar added to that. The dates are fine but the dried cranberries aren’t. I’m not on a point system, so I’m not as fanatic about stuff. I’m still eating lots of cashews, almonds, and pistachios but some of the almonds had flavored sugar around them.
And the drop in fanaticism or lack of points led me to a bit of a problem this past week. I didn’t mobilize for two days in a row because I have no idea why except I was too lazy to actually do it. Somehow, taking ten to fifteen minutes seemed like a struggle and instead I was tight and sore and didn’t really need to be. I know better but I chose poorly because of – no good reason. Laziness, slacker status, dumbness – all are possible.
I don’t know exactly what percentage of my food is “good” or “Paleo” or whatever designation. I’ve been eating Honey Mustard Dressing (homemade) on my salads, but after a few weeks of that, I’m ready for some vinaigrette again. My salads themselves stayed exactly the same. I bought some rice crackers which were better than wheat crackers inside my head, but I don’t know about anywhere else. I made olive dip/spread again. I’ve eaten some cheese.
Dick brought me back some taffy from his trip to Florida. I don’t know how much there was, but I ate it all. Every single piece. It was delicious and tasty but I didn’t need it. I have asked him to not do that again, not because I don’t like taffy, but because I do. I would have enjoyed ten pieces and been happy but instead I had at least a pound of the stuff and feel guilty and like I have no willpower or am ruled by appetites that should be controlled.
All that said, all the badness foods, four weeks after the challenge, and I’m back up a pound. So I need to rethink some of that. Mostly, I need to remember that life is for living and some bad foods are wonderful. The three bowls of ice cream with Velvet Fudge Sauce were worth every morsel. Even some of the taffy was. Eating out with friends and not obsessing about the menu was priceless. Knowing how to choose better was, too.
Appreciating not just the scenery, but the freedom to choose foods is something we all take for granted. There are some places in the world where food is so scarce, you eat what you have and hope there will be more tomorrow – which is truly Paleo, but not the way I want to select my diet.
I’m looking forward to our Thanksgiving feast. Sarah is hosting and is a wonderful cook. So is Dayna and quite frankly, so am I. I know that the food we are eating is not “compliant” and I know it will be tasty. And I’m willing to throw caution to the winds and enjoy the food and the family that surrounds it. What an easy choice to make.