hollysmokes

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About hollysmokes

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  • Location
    nashville,tn
  • Interests
    in no particular order: smokin' meat, fermenting, cooking, preserving food, music, hiking, gardening, biodynamics

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  1. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    “Each morning we are born again. What we do today is what matters most.” —Buddha
  2. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    The curry was delicious, different, easy and compliant so what more could you ask for? My husband even liked it; I just have to remember not to use the "C" word (curry) or he'll say he doesn't like curry. Technically, it used garam masala anyway. Here's the link in case you find yourself with a surplus of green tomatoes: https://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2010/09/dinner-tonight-green-tomato-curry-with-potatoes-and-garlic-recipe.html. I doubled the recipe because a single just didn't seem worth it and added an extra 8 oz of tomatoes but kept the water at 1 cup and that was plenty. I just realized I forgot the cilantro at the end, too. Because the tomatoes are so tart it's almost like a chutney and was really good with roasted veggies and grilled pork tenderloin. I was a little confused about how to cut up the tomatoes because the recipe says to cut them in 1-inch segments. What the heck is a segment of a tomato?? I decided on 1-inch cubes and it seemed to work out well. I think I mentioned the green sauce that I used on my chicken before but couldn't find the source. It's nomnom's recipe for Fiona's Green Chicken. I don't think I've tried Mel's salmon cakes but nomnom has some spicy tuna cakes that look pretty similar and they're really good. You're casserole sounds creamy, delicious. I might have to do that for my breakfasts one week. I don't know about the whole keto thing; seems like it would be hard to get sufficient nutrients. I've read a little about it and I know some peoples, esp women, don't always do well hormonally but I haven't really delved into the specifics. Thanks for the reminder; I think mindfulness is where I've lost my way recently. Even though my meals have been pretty good I haven't been paying attention. At all. Not to my food, my body, my movement. The only thing that's been buzzing around my head is that anything I can get done today is one less thing I have to do tomorrow and that has just turned my life into one gigantic to-do list. Not good and no fun. So now that I'm aware, how can I change it? Yesterday was a "kill all the things" day for no good reason and then our upstairs A/C died. That'll teach me. Reminds me of when I was little and crying over something. My mom would say "You want to cry? I'll give you something to cry about!" Nothing that $1000 won't fix but thankful that we have A/C in the main part of the house and the nights are getting a little cooler. Nope, no cheat days. Intentionally choosing to indulge in something special-yes! I did pretty well last year and, since we're doing the food, that makes it easier. I'll definitely have some gumbo since it's my family's traditional recipe (flour in the roux, Costco roasted chicken with all kinds of yuck in it, non-compliant ham) but I'll forgo the rice. The next day is pulled pork, potato salad, green beans (non-compliant bacon though) and probably a little sauce on my pork. I make the sauce and it's ketchup-based but has only a little bit of added sugar besides what's in the ketchup. Since I make it for hoedown, it's Hoe Sauce, of course, and it's a little spicy and a little vinegary and really yummy. I've had some requests for dessert so I'll have to show some restraint there if I make them and we haven't figured out breakfast yet. I think I'll be OK except the beer vendor is a local craft brewery and I love their beer so I need to show some restraint there too! Yeah, that's going to be my big transgression! I'll accept it and move on. Yes!
  3. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    Hmmmm, an October W30 doesn't sound out of reach as long as I wait until after Hoedown. When in November is your Portland trip? Maybe we could squeeze one in between Hoedown and Portland and have a good reset before the end of the year. I think it would be great to end the year stronger, leaner and more fit (inside & out). I'm feeling pretty yucky today so the thought of getting back in the groove sounds pretty good. I made buffalo wings for a snacky dinner last night and ate way too many of them while we were binge-watching Ozark on Netflix. Thank goodness for peppermint oil! I took a drop in the middle of the night and it helped settle my stomach down but I still don't feel "right" and now I'm sleep-deprived on top of it. Meadowlily says that mistakes made more than once are a decision. I won't make that mistake again! So sorry to hear that you were so sick last week; that sucks. Feeling better? I did manage a pretty good cook-up this weekend but it was very disorganized- lots of pieces/parts but I got two big pans of chicken thighs baked (for me- my hubby is a white meat eater), a big pan of roasted veggies and cooked down a huge bag of spinach to go with my eggs for something different for breakfast. I tried a new recipe and managed to turn it into a non-recipe so volumes don't really matter so much. Cauli "Risotto"! Rice the cauli (about 3 cups-ish) and dice up almost the same amount of mushrooms (I used baby bellas). Put the cauli in a bowl (no added liquid) and microwave it for 2 minutes, stir and repeat. Let it cool for a couple of minutes then put it in a towel and wring as much water out of it as you can without burning yourself. Put a couple of tablespoons of ghee (I used butter because it doesn't bother me and I'm out of ghee) in a skillet and saute some onion (maybe 1/3 of a cup?) and the mushrooms. After the shrooms release a bunch of liquid, let it cook off just a little then add the cauli, salt and a little garlic powder (or saute garlic w the onion). I added a little more ghee at the end for flavor. It is NOT pretty- kinda beige- but it tasted great. Cauli rice isn't my favorite but it's nice to have as a side sometimes. Might be good to bring to a potluck around the holidays, too. My new project is finding something to do with green tomatoes. I found three good ideas: one fermented just like Kosher dills but you slice the tomatoes, one quick pickle in the fridge and a green tomato & potato curry-ish dish that sounds really interesting- it uses garam masala and I even have some. I'll let you know how it turns out. Wow, it sounds like you're doing some deep personal delving. Good for you! I can totally relate to carbs & candy for comfort because I've been doing it just dealing with all of my stress lately. Good nutrition and exercise is a much better approach and we both know that! My tupperware tubs are full
  4. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    Hey Lisbette! Holy cow, how's everything going? Is the smoke still bad where you are? How's your coffee reassessment going? Knees? Movement? Life?? Sorry I fell off the face of the earth for a while there. I feel like I can breathe a little now but the last couple of weeks since we came back from our trip have been a giant whirlwind of projects, deadlines, construction and overwhelm-ed-ness. I've managed a couple of cook-ups in between processing tomatoes and trying out a dozen or so paint samples trying to find the right color for the exterior of the house. Thankfully, the garden is winding down but that gives us a whole different to-do list to get it ready for winter. Construction is going well except for one hiccup that has since been fixed. We even managed to get some actual housework done last weekend. Everything has been such a blur! Now I need to take a deep breath and get our personal stuff under control so we can start gearing up for Hoedown; it's only a month away! I probably should have joined the September W30 but I just didn't think I could add one more thing to my life at that point. My meals have been good but I've snacked a little more than usual and ate gummy bears, of all things, day before yesterday. I love gummy bears but have been able to avoid them for ages. It was a small pack but that was a big "fall off the wagon". So a couple of cookies one day, a bite or two of mac n cheese another, some grits another and the common thread on all of those things is that none of them were good and I had another bite anyway. Clothes are fitting a bit more snugly instead of going in the other direction but I've stayed off of the scale. No movement except for getting through the day and I can really feel it. I no longer have garlic and onions curing on the basement floor so my workout space is cleared out and I have no excuse except the inertia that has crept it. Every time I sat down to write, I got interrupted but this is where I should have prioritized my time because I hated the disconnect with you. You keep me grounded and strong. It's bootstrap time for me!!! I hope everything is going well in your world. I missed you!
  5. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    It's been cr-A-zy busy!! All is good, though, just feeling a bit overwhelmed. The next two months are going to fly by leading up to our friends' music festival, Hoedown on the Harpeth. We do the backstage cooking for the musicians and volunteers so we're gearing up for that plus the long awaited construction project is about to begin. New doors get installed Thursday and the new siding starts Monday but will take about 4 WEEKS! I'm not sure how my scaredy little girl cat and I are going to manage. She has a big stranger-danger problem and has been having some digestive issues that I can't seem to resolve. I had a major cook-up this weekend that included prepping 6 dozen ears of corn for Hoedown and a half bushel of red jalapenos for hot sauce. I've used 8 lbs of them so far and have another 7 to deal with this afternoon. I'm excited about this second batch. It will be just chopped up peppers and salt then after it ferments for a while it gets a layer of cheesecloth then a couple of inches of salt to seal it up. It can stay that way for a couple of years but I don't think I'll be that patient- one year, maybe. The cool thing is that the salt will absorb some of the liquid coming off of the peppers then you can dry it and use it as a pepper salt. My dorky, nerdy self just couldn't pass that up! Anyway my real cook-up was inspired by your roasted tomato soup idea. How did it come out? I made my meatball soup (tomato soup w kale and tiny meatballs). I needed carrots for my hot sauce and thought I was buying a 5-pound bag but it was 10 pounds. That'll teach me to read the label! Now I'm trying to use up carrots so I made W30's Thai Carrot Soup plus broccoli balls to use up brocc and ham that were about to go bad and I got my breakfast casserole done with some chicken chorizo that my meat guy had. After I did all of that I realized that, except for the meatball soup, I didn't have any proteins to go with everything I cooked I did have a big pack of assorted salamis and prosciutto so that's going to be my protein for lunch for a couple of days. Darn! I HAVE to eat salami for lunch yum. Still caffeine naive?
  6. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    Hello! Hello! Hello! I have so missed our conversations. It sounds like you had a good staycation. It's so nice to have that time at home. Sometimes I come back from vacation and need a vacation. I'm very glad I took the extra day before our trip to cook and after our trip to ease back into reality. The birthday celebration was great and my mom said it was her best birthday ever. The beach was beautiful, the weather was beautiful, the food was great (and mostly compliant) and the company was the best of all. I feel like I've gained a couple of pounds but I'm not going to let it get to me. Trust the program. I had more dairy than usual and I'm starting to think that dairy is not friendly to my weight. Not moving is also not friendly to any part of me. We walked on the beach but only one long walk and swam every day but there were a couple of bites of amazing key lime pie, a couple of bites of sushi, and Popeye's fried chicken was our road tripping food- definitely NOT the best choice but it was a choice and not a fall-off-the-wagon and face plant everything in sight kind of thing. Yep, back to basics. My husband had a routine Dr. appointment and got fussed at because he's gained weight since last year. He hasn't mentioned doing a W30 (yet!) but he is going to start eliminating the white stuff. He wants me to go over it with him so I'm going to throw in as much W30 reasoning and direction as I can. I think it really hit home with him that as soon as he started eating whatever he wanted out of the work cafeteria he packed on a few pounds. His daughter kinda hammered it home when she mentioned that even her kids are eating paleo. After their W30 then continuing paleo, her husband has lost 65 lbs and is biking and feeling great. As my Mom says, "Hope springs eternal." so maybe I'll get him W30-ing. I need to get back in a routine. Thankfully I'm only working 3 days this week so I was able to get breakfasts together yesterday and made a mish-mash of leftover stuff for lunch. It had dairy and wasn't very good (that's an understatement!) so I think I'm going to do something I rarely do- toss it. We brought home a bunch of seafood so I'm making crab cakes for dinner tonight with fresh lump crab meat-yummmmm. I usually use a very small amount of bead crumbs to bind them but I'm going to use a tiny bit of coconut flour instead. Today is my Dad's birthday so it's been a day for reflecting. Having some good family time is, I think, making it easier. See ya later alligator!
  7. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    Eeew on the dreadlocks! We used to have a black Chow and she hated to get brushed (because her daddy- my husband- didn't get her used to it when she was little) so she always had dreads on the back of her hind legs and behind her ears. At least she didn't pull them out and leave them for me! Our kitties are both black domestic short-hairs but the big boy's hair is a little longer than normal short-hairs. I'll let you know how the great baba ganoush experiment goes. Pita...sigh...warm, soft, fluffy little triangles. Veggies will have to do for dippers but my brother turned me on to pork rinds for dippers and that works, too. Not sure they would be good with everything (like baba ganoush) but they were great with that dill pickle dip I made a couple of weeks ago. I thought everybody at the party would think I was nuts but they dove into them like crazy. Kirkor's thing about not judging what other people are eating comes in handy in those situations. I do the same thing. Nod, smile and make a non-judgmental comment. It is SAD and that's the sad part. I hope you find something nurturing and fun since your hike got smoked out and maybe it won't be so bad for your hubby at the higher elevations. We leave next Thursday but I'm taking Wednesday off to smoke a pork butt, make dill pickle dip and a few other things to bring. Tomatoes! We're going to bring tomatoes! Out of desperation I threw some on the grill last night and now I have to figure out what to do with them. The neighbor guy I bought my plants from had them mislabeled so instead of the fabulous Purple Cherokee heirlooms, we have 9 billion yellow tomatoes and they make really funny looking sauce. I've been cooking down the Roma's, another red heirloom called a Beefmaster and trying to sneak in as many yellows as I can without turning it day-glo orange.
  8. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    I was wondering about the proximity of the fires to you. There are so many of them that I have a hard time keeping track but glad to hear y'all are safe and the fire is almost out-hopefully it IS out by now. Is there another hike you could distract him with and reschedule this one? That's such a shame that the hike you've been planning for so long is smoky. That definitely doesn't sound like fun and I couldn't imagine breathing all of that in for days. Good for you for recognizing and avoiding less-than-good-for-you stuff. I was having a busy, frustrating day yesterday and the first thing that flashed through my mind was a jelly doughnut- the epitome of everything we try to avoid: sugar, bad fat and wheat! I managed to resist, though. It's not like it was going to make my day any better and then I would have felt worse so good job to both of us! I didn't make it back on the exercise wagon this weekend and felt like I was chasing my tail all weekend. That coupled with a poor night's sleep led to my not so stellar day yesterday but I went home, fired up the grill and got a good dinner together with enough for leftovers tonight. My main motivation for grilling was to cook some eggplant to make baba ganoush. Have you ever made it? I haven't and I love it but I've definitely had some versions that were better then others so when I read Kenji Lopez' article about it (https://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2014/02/the-best-baba-ganoush-recipe.html) I really started craving it. Hopefully I'll get it put together this evening and that will be part of my lunches for the next couple of days. I have my last container of curried chicken salad, fermented slaw and tomatoes today. It's been yummy and I'm glad I got some curry powder made this weekend so I could get it done. I haven't ordered the chin-up bar yet. I have a 24 qt pot showing up this afternoon instead. Except for my gigantic 50 qt gumbo pot, my biggest pot is 12 qts and I keep running out of room to cook tomatoes. Kettle bells look like fun! I haven't been to any MovNat workshops. I just watch the videos and try to do what I can with the equipment (or lack of it) that I have. Yeah, messy house. I hear ya! I managed to get laundry done and keep the kitchen under control but there are little black kitty fur tumbleweeds everywhere. I just ignore them and do what I can. The last day of July! Whew, it flew by. So glad you had a great week and I hope your Plan B works out.
  9. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    Good morning and Happy Friday! After overdoing it a bit I've taken a couple of days off from my workouts but will be back to it today or tomorrow. I need to plan a cook up as well. Nothing has gone as planned this week but it all worked out anyway. I finally got that chicken baked last night and threw a bunch of veggies in the pan with it so those leftovers will get me through today. Lunch yesterday was a herring experiment. I had some canned herring filets, leftover cole slaw and, of course, tomatoes. I put an extra little blob of mayo on the herring and really enjoyed it. Thanks again for turning me on to SMASH; I really want to have some of those fish a minimum of once a week and it helps that it makes for an easy lunch. Those shrimp patties sound so good and I keep buying shrimp to make them but wind up doing something else with the shrimp. I'll have to try one more time- there's no such thing as too many shrimp! One of the bonuses from our trip to FLA will be the seafood we bring back. There's a great seafood market in Pensacola so we'll load up on shrimp and fish on our way home and I'll spend the next day freezing and vacuum-sealing it all. This year I have Thai basil and the last couple of years I had columnar basil- it's pretty cool looking and tastes almost the same as the Thai. It looks like a shrub and grows in a column. I find regular basil a little overpowering so I like the more subtle, floral flavor of the Thai/ columnar a little more. I usually puree some of it in olive oil and freeze it in an ice cube tray to last through the winter. My wild cucumber vines keep trying to grow over it so it's hidden and I keep forgetting about it. Thankfully the heat is starting to get to the cukes and they are dying off. I had to order more gallon jars and airlocks for pickles because the ones I have are all full. They should be there when I get home so I'll probably get my last batch of pickles going this weekend. There is a 5 gallon bucket outside of the garage that is filled to overflowing with the gigantic cukes that got away from me. I think I'm overtaxing the compost pile
  10. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    Viva indeed! Great birthday weekend (The Punch brothers were amazing) and I kept moving! The first thing I did when I got home Friday was my upper body workout. Saturday I rowed 2.5 miles and Sunday was lower body. I had a really hard time getting motivated on Sunday. I came within an inch of bailing out but finally just sucked it up. Once I got started I was fine but I sure had a hard time getting started. The weather has mellowed out for a few days so yesterday I went down to the garden while it was only 72 degrees (!) to pick tomatoes and cucumbers and wound up spending almost 3 hours picking, weeding and trimming. After I hauled 1/2 bushel each of tomatoes and cukes up the hill I realized I might have overdone it juuust a little on the lower body work My hips, quads and butt were screaming after that much time squatting and bending over the day after my workout. I survived, though, and am ready for upper body this afternoon followed by pickling cukes and cooking down tomatoes for sauce. I have a chicken brining so dinner will be simple roast chicken and some kind of veg. And tomatoes. Tomatoes with every meal! We accidentally wound up with yellow tomatoes instead of the heirloom variety we usually plant so I'm trying to figure out what to do with all of them; they make a funny-looking tomato sauce. I made a kinda soupy hash to go with my eggs for breakfast this week and it's so good! I had a zucc that needed to get cooked so I threw that, onions & garlic (from the garden!), cabbage, ground pork and a couple of those yellow tomatoes into a skillet and let it all cook down. Thank goodness for the freezer. I'm having leftover pork gingerbread stew and cauli mash for lunch (and tomatoes!). A three day weekend sounded like so much extra time to do all kinds of things but it went by in a flash and I'm actually less organized for the week than usual. We're reaching that time of year when the food mill stays out on the counter and we have pots of tomatoes simmering and canning. The basement fridge is full of gifts from the garden and there are tomatoes ripening on every counter. Not that I'm complaining or anything... How goes your program of movement?
  11. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    Definitely getting a grip! Monday upper body, Tuesday MovNat, Wednesday lower body/abs, Thursday MovNat-yaaaay! Today I'm planning on leaving work a little early to kick off my 3-day weekend and it'll be upper body time again. Yesterday I HAD to get some stretching in; I was starting to feel like the Tin Man seizing up but felt much better after some floor work and whole body movement. My upper body is still a little sore and I'm really feeling it in my legs and hips but it's just a good reminder of how much I need this. I've been absorbing some of Meadowlily's wisdom again and your comment about yoga not being strength training makes me think of one of her comments about not putting the word "just" in front of your accomplishments. I'm guilty of "I just did yoga yesterday" as if that wasn't an accomplishment in and of itself. Of course when I think about it and realize that at one point my arms were shaking and at another my legs were screaming at me, it wasn't "just" yoga it was good! Your big hike is just a couple of weeks away and my trip is the week after that! Wheeee, time flies. I bet you'll be fine on your hike and without risking giant, freaky, scary wasps. It's going to be a fabulous weekend! I am SO looking forward to having an extra homebody day. I'll probably do something amazingly exciting like rendering tallow and making beef bone broth. Isn't that what everybody does on their birthday? My hubby says that around our house they do We're going to the Ryman for a show Saturday night, too and it's going to be a really good one- Punch Brothers. They're amazing. They're beyond newgrass, more progressive bluegrass maybe? Chris Thile is a mandolin prodigy; the last time we saw him was a solo show of Bach and some classical compositions of his own- unbelievable. I have his Bach CD in my alarm clock and that's what wakes me up in the mornings. I hate to start my day with buzzers and beepers. Bach on a mandolin is more my speed. I'm considering a couple of slices of pizza for dinner before the show. The best pizza place in town just opened a second place fairly close to us and I'm thinking that I might do a little off-roading. I wouldn't consider the actual pizza itself to be about self care but more about a little indulgence on a special occasion. All of the rest of my birthday presents to myself have been about taking care of myself- a new pair of xero sandals, some new stainless steel lunch containers and the best gift of all- movement! I even put a chin-up bar in our Amazon cart- not that I can actually DO a chin up but if I don't work on it I'll never be able to (bucket list item). Keep moving!
  12. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    It would give you nightmares, Ladyshanny! Glad to see you hanging around.
  13. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    Holy giant wasp, Batman! I had to look up tarantula hawks and that is the scariest thing I've ever seen! Some entomologist was quoted as saying that their sting is so incredibly painful that his recommendation was to just lie down and scream. We have a wasp problem but nothing like that and, thankfully, only rare horse flies. Triple digit heat, too; I guess I better quit whining about being in the mid 90's, huh? That's where we are today but the humidity has dropped to a glorious 50%. It's been so humid that I've driven to work in the fog most days lately. Thanks for the Anais Nin quote; it definitely speaks to me. I've been pondering...is my issue a fear of failure or a fear of success? Maybe a mishmashed combination of the two but now I feel the need/urge to blossom. Working the plan? The plan working me? I think that might be the path out of my commitment dilemma: focus. I was just starting to really feel the benefits of regular movement and strength training when I pooped out on my regular workouts. Actually, I shouldn't call them "workouts" because it's very meditative for me and "workout" makes me think of crowded gyms that are anything but meditative. I like the solitude behind the closed door where I don't have to worry about sucking in my stomach because someone might see me. I can concentrate on my form and how it feels and my breath - ahhhh. So Monday I did a really good upper body routine and yesterday I did about 30 minutes of MovNat floor work. I really want to get into MovNat some more so that was my beginning. Today is lower body/abs and I have it all planned out so I can walk in the house and get to it. The no-plan plan gives me accountability (the plan part) but also some flexibility (the no-plan part). My attempt at getting up at 5 yesterday was a wash-out; I tried to use the 2nd alarm on my clock but I've never used it before and messed it up. That's OK; I'm going to work into it. The goal this week is to move every day. I have a three-day weekend this weekend so I'm going to use that extra day to get myself on the path towards an early morning, greet-the-day routine. I can feel it falling into place in my brain. T-Rex; that's funny! I have to enjoy my exercise, too. As much as I like the feel of the rowing machine, I hate it! I need to use my mind as well and mindless spinning/rowing/walking doesn't do it for me. My husband puts on the news and he's good with that (he's a news junkie anyway!) but I need something more. He's rubbed off on me a bit and I actually do keep an eye on the news nowadays but I can't do it in the morning. Starting my day with doom & gloom & crises just stresses me out. The Golden Rule: yes, yes, yes! We're taught is at such a young age but then it seems to get overridden by the dogma. We live in "the buckle of the bible belt" so I tend to keep my religious beliefs/non-beliefs to myself but it's a joy when we go to our friend's farm in the fall for the annual biodynamic conference. I need to read more Steiner. I tend to get overwhelmed by the effort it takes to understand what he's saying and I go in spurts. The last day of the conference always includes readings and discussion of a select lecture and it's always fun to listen to the different perspectives. One year they used two different translations and there were a couple of people there that spoke German so they threw their two cents worth in to lend even more complexity to an already complex subject. OK! Yes, we can do this! Thanks for the therapy session
  14. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    I have a feeling this is going to be a long one so, starting from the top... I had a very similar Sunday. Funny how we do that! After a very hectic but very fun Saturday, it felt grand to be able to take my time doing laundry, reading and cleaning up the aftermath of Saturday. Our friends that have the music festival in the fall and the picking party in the spring were having a shrimp boil/beer tasting. We brought a couple of dips, some shrimp, corn and potatoes to contribute to the boil and helped out by bringing our boiling set-up and Cajun seasoning to compliment their low-country style boil. Everyone had some really good craft beers to share and a good time was had by all! Since I have a few gallons of pickles at the moment, I made a dill pickle dip that sounded a little weird but tasted really, really good. It had dairy so it's definitely a post-W30 thing but pork rinds made a great dipper and it was a big hit. I'll be making some of that to bring on our Fla trip, for sure. I ate one ear of corn because it was just-picked and all spiced up in the boil so that was my "worth it" choice along with the beer. Can't have a seafood boil without beer! Wine is my "reward" for everything: tired, good day, bad day, celebration, mourning, whatever. It's a mindless part of my after-work routine that I thought I had broken after my W60. I was careful not to substitute a glass of kombucha or something similar so I could break the wine and too-big serving of nuts that I had every day when I got home. I've managed to stop the snacking but the wine-ing has crept back in. The 4th point M makes in that email about cultivating other behaviors was totally written for me. My entire adult social life has always revolved around a neighborhood watering hole. It's how we met most of our friends here. It's actually how I met my husband; we both sailed and the yacht club was essentially our neighborhood "Cheers". The routine mindlessness of it is almost the trigger, I think. Does that mean that mindfulness is the trigger antidote? Meadowlily says "Freedom from autopilot takes change" and what M says about not doing W30 after W30 and expecting it to fix everything in 30 days reinforces the fact that it's a long-term process. Being a little kinder to ourselves is probably in order while we keep working the plan. Have you ever looked at Rudolph Steiner and anthroposophy? I, also, am not religious and the spiritual philosophy he describes tying the spiritual universe to the spirit of human beings resonates with me far more than any organized religion. So, although our family traditions have revolved around the typical religious holidays, it is more from custom than religion for me. So, yes, finding meaning in the solstice, biodynamic gardening and not hating June 21 have been part of that. I always thought of the longest day of the year as the beginning of the long slide into short, dark, cold days but now I think of winter as the time that the earth is inhaling and preparing for the rebirth and growth that is spring and summer. It's all a matter of perspective, no? I'm having a hard time coming up with a work-out plan that fits my day but that's because I want it all. I hate sitting in traffic with a passion. I think of it as wasted pieces of my life that I can never get back so I've adjusted my work schedule to avoid it. I get up at 530, am at work for 630 and leave about the time school lets out so I miss the bulk of the afternoon traffic. Ideally, I would prefer to work out in the morning but I just can't make myself get up at 430 or earlier to make that happen. By the time I get home it's usually almost 4 (and that's only if I have to make one stop for something) and it's too easy to make excuses or find other things that "need" to be done. Maybe I need to re-organize my day? Probably re-prioritize? Time for a change, that's for sure. I had a good cook-up yesterday and made a double batch of holy mackerel cakes and a quick breakfast casserole using some sauteed greens I had saved in the freezer. I had plenty of time to get some movement in but it didn't even cross my mind. I think I had mentally written it off but your thoughts and questions have worked up that sense of personal momentum you mentioned. How long are your typical work-outs? I have a hard time committing to anything over an hour; it makes me feel overwhelmed. You're right, it's a new week filled with opportunities to make some good decisions. I feel more empowered and more optimistic about having the wherewithal to make those decisions. My goal is to play with some different routines, I think. I am going to go home this afternoon and do some stretching and weights. Tomorrow I'm going to see how I do getting up at 5 instead of 530 and have a 20-30 minute yoga session queued up on my computer and ready to go. Maybe splitting things up a bit will make it a little more flexible but, if nothing else, it's a step in the right direction. I guess I'm a little vague on my plan but pinky swear it is! Being the list maker that I am, I always had a to-do list for the weekends but discovered that if I just kept moving and did things as I encountered them (think... "Squirrel!!!) I actually got more done and felt less of a feeling of failure if I didn't accomplish everything on the list. I am going to try to organically let the movement happen with the only rule is that I have to do something everyday and over the course of a week, I'll do three weight sessions and at least three yoga/stretching sessions. How does that sound for a no-plan plan?
  15. hollysmokes

    Start Date: December 1st

    How are the cravings? Have you been able to quiet them down with some sleep and good food? I guess it's not surprising that you were hungry and it's great that you had no adverse physical issues. Some things are worth it and the great connections, conversations and healing are definitely some of those things. "Deliriously wonderful" -YES! It's funny that it's only July and we're looking at our one year anniversary but it will be here in a flash! FLA in August, then October is our friend's music festival where we feed all of the musicians & volunteers and then it's December! I'm with your husband on Christmas but I miss the family connection part of it since we are separated geographically. Since my parents split up when I was 11, holidays were a power struggle between each side and the kids were the prize- not much to celebrate there. Since I'm in health care, there have been lots of holidays that I've had to work and tried to get my husband to spend it with his kids but he refuses to leave me alone. I appreciate the sentiment very much but it would have been fine and it would have made me happy that he was forging relationships with them. Did you have a chance to read Melissa's email yesterday? I know you're crazy busy and recovering and it was long but it was a good one about not being a Food Freedom Failure. I'm still really struggling with committing to an exercise/workout plan and keep sabotaging myself with wine so I feel like I've totally failed on that level. I've gained and lost the same 2-3 lbs a dozen times since the end of my W60 in Feb and just feel gross. You'd think that would be motivation, wouldn't you? And then I went clothes shopping... "Food freedom isn’t just about food—it’s about how you think about yourself, and go about your life." Yes, it is.