Simply Balanced

I remember months ago opening a can of cranberry raspberry LaCroix and spitting it out because it was the most disgusting thing I have ever tasted. Like whole body cringing because it was so gross… I threw the whole case away because it was disgusting. Fast forward to starting Whole30… I can not get enough sparkling water. I LOVE IT! I find it interesting how your taste buds can so drastically change based on your diet, health, or simply just by aging. I think back to foods I hated as a child and young adult but can now stomach to eat.

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I wanted to share my new favorite sparkling water. Purchased at Target, I LOVE Simply Balanced Cucumber Mint sparkling water. No sugar! No Sodium! Refreshing! Delicious! And the price is right. Most days I spend less than $3 for a case AND end up saving 5% using the Target App (formerly known as Cartwheel). So far every flavor of the Simply Balanced Sparkling Water I have tried, I have loved.

Best part of it being cold outside…. my multiple brands and multiple flavors of sparkling water stay ice cold in my car.

 

Food

Sometimes I feel like all I do is cook! But it has been such a blessing eating healthy and prepack food. Last week one of my employees called in sick and it was a RUSH to get out the door. If I had not had my food prepacked… I would have been in trouble. The extra time, work, and energy to be prepared really pays off.

Being with friends this weekend I did not prepack food. I instead threw a quick meal together of broccoli slaw, pineapple, spicy chicken sausage, garlic, and some coconut aminos at their home (while I made acorn squash covered in butter and brown sugar for Uncle Les). I think my “niece” and her boyfriend were shocked the healthy food could taste good too.

I also made lettuce cups with ground chicken, garlic, ginger, onions, water chestnuts and a sauce made from rice vinegar, coconut aminos, almond butter, sesame oil and chili sauce. I topped it with cilantro… because I love cilantro… and scooped it in Boston Lettuce cups.

Lately I have been craving pesto sauce. Most pesto sauce in the store has Parmesan cheese in it. Yesterday I took Paula grocery shopping and could not find basil. Today I went back to the store… to many stores… Carpinitos, Nature’s Market, Fred Meyer’s, Target, Safeway, Trader Joe’s. I was starting to think satisfying this craving was not worth the effort. Thank goodness Trader Joe’s delivered (And thank you Leslie for suggesting it!)

In my ninja I put a 4oz package of fresh basil (stems removed), 1/2 cup pine nuts, lemon juice from one lemon, a squirt of minced garlic, and some olive oil… and a little cilantro (because as I have already mentioned… I ❤️ it!). It tastes so good! I also baked a spaghetti squash, mixed 1/3 of the pesto sauce with it and topped it with fried chicken and pine nuts. My Chicken was easy to make and tasted pretty good… Paula will agree! I mixed 2 eggs with 2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard and mixed it well. I twice dipped my chicken in the egg mixture and a mixture of coconut flour, dried parsley, dried oregano, dried basil, paprika, sea salt and garlic powder and browned it in the wok with a little olive oil. I then finished it off on the George Foreman Grill. Because I will be staying at Tracy’s house tomorrow night, I packed two days worth of lunch and dinner… and a chopped RX Bar for Thursday morning.

Downside to all this cooking… I still have to finish the dishes…and clean the kitchen…

Day 31

Today is day 31 of my Whole 30 journey. I thought a lot about what life after Whole 30 would be like. Do I feel I have completely mastered my cravings? Am I ready to add things back into my diet? I thought a lot about it… A LOT…. how nice it would be to eat some of the things I really want. That is when I noticed my thoughts were not where I feel they should be. So, for now, I continue on Whole 30. 

I did weigh myself and am very proud to announce I am down 17 pounds! SEVENTEEN POUNDS!! All from just changing my diet. These next 30 days I really want to focus on fitness. This  is almost 20% of my weight loss goal!!

Go Seahawks!

I have noticed cravings arrive based on activities or memories. 

This morning listening to conference I was craving my mom’s cinnamon rolls and (of course) jelly beans. Watching football I am craving all sorts of things… pizza, wings, pancit, Doritos casserole…. something needed to be done. 

This was my football food solution:

Grilled Sweet Potatoes topped with guacamole, hard boiled eggs, red onions, green peppers and paleo bacon. Satisfied my desire for something tasty today!

Two AM Wake-up Calls

Today was a tough day. If I had my brain on straight I would have washed my face before I cut garlic and jalapenos and onions instead of after…. My eyes are pretty red, but at least they aren’t burning anymore. I also tried making Whole30 approved mayo and I failed miserably. It was looking great and then it just went back to liquid…. I have a feeling I will be going through a lot of eggs and olive oil trying to perfect it!

Today was also tough eating day again… I think it is just stress but I really did not eat at all. I needed the extra rest so I tried another RX Bar. Chopping it into little pieces and eating it on the way to work is really the way to go. It lasted the whole commute. I drank my water, went on with my day and then as Saturdays at work go, it got crazy!! One of my coworkers had to leave for a couple hours and the care managers didn’t make it to relieve me in the dining room in time which meant no break for me. This also meant no lunch because the front desk was so busy after lunch. On my quick trip to get supplies for the residents I picked up some carrots and celery, cashews and La Croix. And that was all, until I came home and started cooking. Not good today but could have been way worse. A week ago if I was stressed I would probably have stopped and got French fries extra crispy for the drive home.

An awesome thing about dieting is that I am trying new recipes and foods I may or may not have tried (like radicchio, which I know I have probably had but not intentionally and planned). I have been craving Pad Thai and Mexican food so I made recipes reminiscent of both. I have to thank my health coach (who is also the Director of Life Enrichment at Aegis, who better to hold me accountable than a direct supervisor and someone I fear letting down?) for sharing yummy looking recipes with me.

In the crockpot, but not pictured is a Mexican style chicken. I should have written down where it came from, but I didn’t and now I can not find it…. It has chicken, Ro*tel, chicken broth, Whole30 homemade Worcestershire sauce, and a medley of spices… OH MAN! I just realized I forgot to put oregano in the crock pot, I need to go add that…. A similar recipe has it atop a sweet potato. I will keep looking for the recipe I used and make sure to update this post when I find it.

I also made two other recipes but I will spread them out as to not bore you all!

Because I started the crockpot at 7:00pm, I will be getting up at 2:00am to turn it off. I probably could have planned that better but because I am working tomorrow I will not have my normal meal plan day and I ran out of the food I cooked for this past week.

 

BINGO & Loss of Appetite

Highlight  of my day was by far going to the nursing assistant  school speaking to the students about how much I love Aegis and why they should join our team at Aegis of Kirkland. I am so blessed to be apart of Aegis Living!! Sometimes I feel like I am the worst Life Enrichment Director EVER though. I hate BINGO… what activity director hates BINGO? If I could,  I would never have  a BINGO game ever again… but my residents just love it.

Tonight I gave BINGO candy a ride from Kirkland to Shoreline and Shoreline back home. We spent a good 3 hours  together. It sat in front of me while I helped recruit CNAs and sat next to me in my commute back home (does BINGO candy count as a carpool buddy?). I wasn’t once tempted until 9:03 pm as I pulled into my parking spot. No one would know if I snuck a piece, right? And one little piece of candy can’t hurt, right? It is so shiny, and colorful, and it smells good! Ugh, yes it would ruin everything! I am going to complete this Whole 30 and not let a little BINGO candy ruin my hard work.
Today I had a hard time eating. I ate breakfast and had maybe a cup of fresh fruit but I just wasn’t feeling it today. I couldn’t force myself to eat. At 7 I finally made myself eat 6 bites of my cauliflower salad but still wasn’t hungry. How do you force yourself to eat when you know you need to but just aren’t hungry?

Apple Crisp

Oh it smells so good when you can’t have it! So did the mashed potatoes and meatloaf I served the residents tonight!

Day 4 is complete! Although that food smelled good, it really wasn’t much of a temptation. On the way home at 7:45pm I ate some carrot sticks and yellow peppers and am going to bed full. Do any of you  find a different in the taste of baby carrots and peeling and cutting the regular carrots? Regular carrots taste so much better to me.

Anyways, I have this! I mean, yes, there  is still 26 more days… but I am going to do this!!