Monday, February 27, 2012

DYNASTY - Circa 1912

I don't watch television.


No TV read a book

Seriously.  I used to watch TV all the time - before kids...

But then they came along 1-2-3 and the last thing I had time to do was watch TV.  Then they started watching TV.  Sorry folks.  I just ain't your Lion King, Sesame Street, Spongebob Squarepants kinda Mom.  I just can't sit there for hours and  get into it.  BAD MOM!  I can barely tolerate an animated movie at the theater.  And I rarely do.  In fact I took my crew - all under 13 - to see Wanderlust the other day because I'm a BAD MOM.  It was QUITE inappropriate, BTW.  Ooops...  Now my husband?  He will sit there every night watching kid crap with my three little pigs.  I can't remember the last time my husband and I watched an adult TV show together.  A movie - maybe.  A Yankees game - many.  But a TV show?  I just quietly sneak away to bed to read a book (no, not on a Nook!), Pinterest (ADDICTED), Facebook, etc. etc. etc.

I DO follow one show.  I LOVE Parenthood.  LOVE IT.  And I am so sad the season finale is tomorrow night.  Technically, I don't even watch THAT on TV.  I watch it on my laptop - about 4 episodes at a clip!  I used to watch Grays Anatomy and Private Practice too but I can't seem to fit it in between Words With 

Friends and Scramble into my busy nighttime schedule anymore.  I will go back and watch them on DVD though.  I love those shows.  I just couldn't catch up before they took the episodes off the ABC website.

And I also LOVED Friday Night Lights.  Sigh - all done.  I miss those Texans!

Anyway - there is a point to this post.  Around Christmas time, I started hearing some whispers about Downton Abbey.  I had NO CLUE what the hell it was.  I didn't even know it was a TV show!  Which wouldn't have made a lick of difference because I have no clue about any of those shows - Dexter, Revenge, Smash, CSI this and CSI that.  I don't watch TV!!!!!!

Then I heard a little more about Downton Abbey.  Then I was seeing Facebook posts about it.  You know - Facebook - the only place to get your news?  Seriously - it IS the only place I get my news.  I work right through the morning news and talk shows and I work through the evening news local and Worldwide.  Thank GOODNESS for Facebook!!!!

Anyway - I was tuning into one of those shows on a Saturday or Sunday morning - The Today Show maybe?  And they did a whole SEGMENT on the rising popularity of GUESS WHAT?


Well - I just had to see for myself.  So I suggested to my hub that maybe the time had come for us to watch a TV show together instead of him watching kid crap or flipping channels for hours while I lost my mind.  I told him about this new show that was getting alot of press.  Lo and behold - he agreed!  I found it on Wii Netflix and the rest is history.  Mr. and Mrs. M are HOOKED.  JOYJOYJOY!

It started out a bit flat.  But we stuck with it.  We are now on Season 1, Episode 7.  It is gettin' GOOD!!!!!  (Shhhhh - do NOT tell Mr. M that he's watching a nighttime soap opera...think Dynasty set in 1912...heehee)  

So, catch some JOY!  Downton Abbey on PBS.  I think the season finale was last week but in my life, TV has no schedule.  In this day and age?  It's pure JOY!  You can watch practically anything whenever you want.  Perhaps, after 12 TVless years, my re-entry has begun.



Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Happy Dance!!

I am SO doing the happy dance today!

Truth be told, I haven't had the best 2 weeks of my life.  Saying goodbye is soooooo HARD!  But I am starting to pull it together.  I spent the last 2 weeks in the biggest, most exhausting fog I have ever experienced.  I would get up early, train my peeps till about 10 every day, crawl into bed, sleep for two hours, get up, drag through the afternoon, collapse for another hour or 2, train my evening peeps and go lay down right after.  THAT is what no carbs and no sugar did to me.  Now if you think like me, you're saying WTF????  Isn't it carbs and sugar that give you the highs and the crashes?  What's going ON here?  Well I found out on Thursday.

You will recall from my last post that my blood work that my new man  naturopath read from 8 months ago, showed borderline insulin resistance/Type 2 diabetes and also hypothyroid issues.  Ummmm - is that where the 12 pounds of FAT came from these last 2 years???  So I went on my man's food plan which is basically NO carbs AT ALL - none of this:



Or even THIS!!!

Well, the new blood work showed, A)  I've been living on carbs and sugar which is why my body crashed and burned for 2 weeks.  My poor body was so messed up hormonally, that I wasn't giving my body anything it was used to living on. B)  I was completely depleted in Vitamin B12.  Another reason my get up and go, got up and went.  C)  Definitely high on the glucose  D)  Definitely low thyroid measures. E)  My cortisol is THRU THE ROOF.  Whatever these numbers mean, I was a 28 when you're supposed to be somewhere between 6.2 and 19.  Ummmm - a wee bit of stress helping to jack those numbers?  Let's see - father sick, father dies, special needs 10 year old, crazy house, crazy LIFE!

So - what does this all mean?  It means - I MUST stay on the no carb/sugar gig to get my body back in shape both inside and out.  Byebye FAT!  Good riddance!  I got a B12 shot that 24 hours later made me a changed woman.  So changed, my clients commented on Miss Perky being back!  My man put me on a small regiment of supplements to address the thyroid, the cortisol and the B12 deficit, as well as those good ole girly hormones.

Honestly?  I seriously think that girly hormones F up almost all women and that probably every women should be tested.  Because nearly every women I meet - and I see ALOTTTTTT of women as a women's trainer - is unhappy with their body fat increase, complains about energy and basically want a change.  But that's just MY opinion.

Anyway - the happy dance?  Well, You may know that this chick loves her food.  (as an aside?  I am NOT hungry on this plan.  I almost have to force myself to eat.  BUT - when I eat, I want great tasting food!)  So saying goodbye to 2 whole food groups should be painful.  Well - I DO miss my sweets!!!  No doubt there.  But the fact that I get to eat full fat dairy?  OMG - it's the bomb.  Full fat yogurt?  Do they even make that???  Turns out, they do!  And it is YUMMY.  Full fat cheese?  What a TREAT!  I buy the best and only need a few slivers.  Quiche for breakfast?  Every morning!  Who is BETTER than me???  Which brings me to the happy dance.  I have been distracting myself by trying out recipes that fit my "diet".  Since I am eating very Paleo in some regards, there is a ton of cookbooks and recipes on line.

In fact, I caught JOY at the mailbox the other day.  All because of Paleo.  I pulled out a very unexpected package.  My beautiful niece, Kelly, sent me this:

I had the biggest, most JOYful smile on my face!  I love you Kelly!!!!!!  You totally have my number!!♥♥♥

So of course, I had to try out a recipe!  I made their Morning Glory Muffins.  At first - not so much.  But then I "consulted" with my chicas and we tried them with butter (I get to eat that!!!) and then with cream cheese - the BOMB!  So moist - so Paleo - so the new me!  And the trick?  Almond Meal - once AGAIN!

Hands down - almond meal is the new love of my life.  My last post told you about pie crust made with almond meal.  Then it was the muffins and the BEST of all after the pie crust was the banana bread.  I LOVE banana bread.  But I never eat it because it's got so much sugar in it and also the flour.  NOW - I could never eat the traditional yum recipe I use.  BUT - my BFF Lynn sent me this one and it is FANTASTIC!  NO sugar (a small amount of Agave or honey is used) and NO flour.  I bought full fat organic cream cheese and TADAAA!!!  I am doing the happy dance!  Here's the recipe:

Almond Meal Banana Bread

3 cups Blanched Almond Flour
1 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Sea Salt
1/2 tsp Baking Powder (aluminum-free)
3 Eggs (pastured, organic)
2-3 Very Ripe Bananas, Mashed
1/2 cup Xylitol (or honey or agave, etc)
1/4 cup Coconut oil
1 tbs Pure Vanilla Extract
1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F
2. Grease (with coconut oil) a 12-muffin tin (or 1 loaf pan)
3. Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl
4. Mix wet ingredients in a medium bowl (in order listed)
5. Add wet mixture to dry mixture
6. Transfer to pan
7. Bake muffins for about*** 20 – 25 minutes (or) bake a loaf for about 35 – 40 minutes
8. Let cool in pan for about 5-10 minutes
9. Remove from pan and cool on wire rack
So the other thing you should know is - I believe there will be a time when I can incorporate a small bit of carbs into my weekly diet.  And my man said I could indulge in a few berries or half an apple (not daily, perhaps, but weekly a few times).  So I'm ok with that!  I love my apple and almond butter (no peanuts or peanut butter) so that will be a treat.  And Oh, let's face it kids, you don't REALLY think I won't cheat on this "diet"?  Of course I will.  And guess what?  Tonight's the night!  I'm having cocktails (perhaps a few Dark and Stormys?  Orrrr - maybe a few of my hub's Cider-Bourbon Cocktails a la Martha Stewart?) and guess what's for dessert?  CHEESECAKE!!!  MY cheesecake.  Purist that I am - I will spoon every last morsel into my mouth without my lips touching any fruited topping.  JOYYYYYYYYY
And then I'll probably be sick all night!  UNJOYYYYYYY.  Agh - that could be the downside.  But we will see.  If so, it will surely deter me in the future.  And I'm ok with that...
For now - I am joyful to be working on fixing what ails me.  I am enJOYing spending time in the kitchen cooking up satiating food for myself and to share.  And most importantly, I am starting to catch more JOY as it flies by.  It's a start...


Saturday, February 11, 2012


I'm not just going stir crazy! I'm going stir the PAINT crazy.  If you follow my life blog, you know I had a small kitchen fire last January and had big things going on to recover from it.  One was re-doing a wall of my kitchen complete with oven and microwave and new cabinets etc. etc. etc.  Unfortunately, one can not just "do" one wall in a kitchen.  Now the other cabinets look yellowed next to the new stark white cabinets and crown molding - SIGH.  Now I need a new cooktop, a new island, crown molding - it goes on and on.  OMGGGGGGGGGGGGG.  $$$$$$$$$$$$$

But the painter lived here for almost 3 weeks and did a beautiful job.  But, alas - he painted every ceiling in the house, the kitchen, the stairwell and now the rest of the house looks shabby and in need of - you got it - a paint job.  OMGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG.  $$$$$$$$$$$$$



So different!  So much brighter in there.  I LOVE it.  Truly!

Then brilliant me decided I wanted to live in a gym painted blue instead of creamy yellow - Oriental Silk - to be exact.  And here's where I'm at...

 Ummm - and that's only ONE wall!  Yes - I DO have a problem choosing colors.  But listen!  Really!  Paint looks different in every light!  And this room has 4 skylights and two traditional windows.  And swear to god - each color looks different depending on the time of day.  I finally put a color up and the aha light went on and I knew it was the right one.  It looked great at all times of the day.  I was so excited.  

But THEN, I took one of the pint samples and decided to use it for a pie cupboard in my kitchen.  I gave my father a Sundance catalog a few years ago and asked if he could duplicate the picture.  And he did!  I had him paint it a turquoisey green and when my kitchen went from cranberry to light blue - Borrowed Light - to be exact...I decided I wanted to paint the cupboard a medium slate blue called Old Blue Jeans.  I loved the color in the gym but had a twinge of fear that it would be a whisper too dark.  So one day, I painted the pie cupboard with Old Blue Jeans.  OMGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG!!!!!!!

What was slate in the gym was almost LAVENDER in my kitchen.  Now I was spooked.



What the H*LL??????

So now I'm all nervous about the other color - the one that spoke to me in the gym.  What to do.  What to do.

Well the first thing I had to do was STOP discussing paint with my clients.  Have you ever had 70 women tell you what color to go with, what color is horrible, too dark, too blue, go with orange, paint the ceiling the same color, paint 2 walls, one color and 2 walls a different color - OMGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG!
It was like choosing baby names.  DO NOT TELL!!!!!!!

I actually zipped my lips once I decided on my color.  I refused to tell.  They BEGGED.  NOPE!!!!!  It IS on the wall amongst the stripes and swatches though!!  It is KILLING them!!  They will just have to wait until March 5th when the new session starts!  It's a great payback for all their helpful opinions!  JOYJOY!!

Anyway - my painter should be reallllll happy when he walks in and sees all my test stripes...What do you want to bet - $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$.  I'm sure he'll have to prime now.  Not exactly what he quoted...oh well - I have to live with this for at least another 7 years so...agh - it's only $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$!!

So of course, I now get to choose colors for the rest of the house since I have to paint every room, hallway, etc...JOYJOY.  $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Can you say - STRIPES?????

BTW - off subject here but, you know my quest to reverse my borderline health problems?  Well I found a GREAT pie crust recipe and I made an awesome quiche with it.  Who's happier than me?  I can eat quiche with a delicious grain free crust and it tastes YUM!!! Here it is:

2 cups of almond meal (which is just pulverized almonds)
1 egg
2 tablespoons of coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon salt

Mix it up in the food processor and press into a pie plate.

FYI - I also made 2 crusts and used them for a chicken pot pie and they didn't work so well.  It just wasn't the same.  But the quiche?  I'd venture to say it was even better with my grain-free crust.  Nothing like a big ole slice of yummy quiche in the morning when you are on the run.  Feels decadent yet it's all good!  

THAT, my JOY!!!

Saturday, February 4, 2012


Well.  My life is over as I know it.  Lots of goodbyes - sniff.  Goodbye gelato.  Sayonara brown rice.  Ta ta ALCOHOL.  Au revoir bread, potatos, quinoa etc. etc. etc.  At least for a few months...

I was at my naturopath the other day and much to my dismay, he discovered that I - that would be ME - the fitness fanatic, foodie, nutrition coach, healthy as a horse ME - do not only have a thyroid issue but I am also right on the cusp of pre-diabetes.  In fact - I believe the words were "...increased risk of diabetes"  Are you f'ing kidding me??????  Ok - I know it's not terminal.  Hell - it's not even DIABETES!  But let me tell you something.    This girl AIN'T getting diabetes.  And the thyroid thing?  I'll be taking care of THAT also and it won't be with Big Pharma involved.  Ok - that's as far as I go discussing politics.

Anyway - my doc is confident we can get me in tip top shape by changing my diet.  Carbs out, protein and fat IN.  So for the next few months I will be the poster child for the Paleo diet done the doc's way with some tweaks.  I'm not an expert but the Paleo diet is  no dairy, no carbs - rice, potatos, legumes, anything with flour in it - essentially grain-free.  Lucky for me, my doc thinks dairy is ok.  Raw milk cheese, butter etc.  Fine with me.

The one thing I DO know about me is I can't live like that!  Bare bones food.  But, if it tastes great, it will satiate me.  So I have been researching my options and there are PLENTY!

Unless you live under a rock, you know the super bowl is tomorrow.  Am I happy about not being able to hoist a few Dark and Stormys?  Ummmm - noooo.  But I will refrain.  Obviously I will allow cheat days during this period of my life but I already know I'm saving mine for an evening later in the month.  So super bowl is a dry town for me.  But I can EAT!!!!!  Now what does one eat at super bowl gatherings?  Chips, dip, cheese and crackers, wings, sweets!  Well, I can't have the chips,  But I made a KICK ASS hummus today.  Hummus typically has chick peas and/or beans in it - ummmm...legumes?  Can't have.  So I found this blog today and made this instead and it is the BOMB!  AND, I made the crackers to go with it.  Unbelievable!

Hot Zucchini Hummus

  • 2 Medium Zucchini, peeled and quartered
  • 3/4 cup Tahini
  • 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/2 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 medium/large cloves of minced garlic
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons kosher or sea salt
  • Food Processor or High Speed Blender
  1. Peel and chop zucchini and place in food processor.
  2. Add in Tahini, Olive Oil, and fresh lemon juice, and blend.
  3. Add garlic, cumin, and salt, and blend thoroughly.

For the peppers and pine nuts:
  • 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red and green peppers
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • a little salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts
  1. Saute chopped peppers and red pepper flakes in olive oil until tender.
  2. Lightly toast pine nuts in the toaster oven. (be sure to watch carefully so they do not burn.)
For the eats:
Garnish the hummus with the spicy peppers and pine nuts. Feel free to eat as is, or mix the topping into the hummus. Either way is delicious!

For the Flax Crackers
  • 2 cups almond flour
  • 1 cup flax seed meal
  • 1/2 cup whole flax seeds
  • 2 omega 3 eggs, whisked
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt

  1. In a large mixing bowl, stir together almond flour, flax seed meal, eggs, oil, salt, and flax seeds.
  2. Separate dough into two halves (I formed balls).
  3. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  4. Roll dough between two sheets of parchment paper until it is about 1/8 inch thick.
  5. Score with a knife, or cut with a pizza cutter into 2 x 2 inch squares.
  6. Sprinkle a little extra salt over the top of the crackers.
  7. Bake at 350 for about 12 minutes. We recommend checking the crackers after 10 minutes.
  8. Once cooled, break crackers into squares and enjoy!

I'm also making wings.  And I'm making Spicy Chicken Sausage and Broccoli Rabe a la Jim Yak and I went out to the yummiest cheese shop around Curds and Whey and picked out an amazing Gouda made in Spain that will blow your socks off and a French raw milk Manchago to die for.  I can eat CHEESE!!!!  With my Flax crackers!!! 

So, I'm not particularly happy about this right now - you know - being told something is "kind of" wrong with me.  But, I am not one to sit back and accept ANYTHING I'm not happy about.  So let's see how this goes.

Oh and where's the JOY in all this?
Why...finding great food!  Getting healthier.  Losing that little muffin top that's appeared in the past 2 years.  Taking control.  That's my JOY.

PS?  GO GIANTS!!!!!!!!!  I LOVE YOU ELI!!!!!!!