First 36 hours thinking about committing to Whole30

September 14: Reading the book I bought about Whole30 and trying to get the teenager into it. I really think it will help the fluid levels in her head.

She’s miserable with her ear infection— now that she’s taking Augmentin, the ear gunk, as I like to call it, is pouring down her nose and throat and making her cough. She went to rehearsal for marching band before today’s home game and she was stumbling and off balance.

She didn’t really have the lung capacity to play, and the clogged ears make blowing hard so she came home and slept through the game.

I bought some eggs at the farm, organic raisins and ginger crystal drink at one natural food store, and ginger chews, liquid smoke and Whole30 approved coffee creamer at another.

The ginger is for the girl’s throat.

I came home and cooked three chicken breasts— some to top my garden salad for lunch and the rest to make a chicken broccoli cold salad for lunches early in the week.

For dinner, we had chicken and some spaghetti squash served like spaghetti and sprinkled with bacon cheddar cheese.

I’m making an effort to plan meals that are Whole30 compliant and testing the waters with individual meals. But I’m also not buying anything not compliant, so by the time we are ready to commit we have the house ready.

September 15:

She had ice cream last night, claiming its necessity due to her throat. I had a “Philadelphia cream cheese cheesecake cup.”

I woke hungry, but I also slept in until 7:30. I also had a headache. Read about the part of Whole30 where you can’t have coffee until after breakfast. I wake very bumbling. And I usually get hungry around 9– even if I have breakfast at 6 or 7 I get hungry around 9.

I had some herbal tea, unsweetened, and it fixed my headache. Tried Whole30’s method of poaching eggs in the skillet— I think I liked mine better. I made a slice of Dave’s Killer Organic Seeded Bread as toast. I know two emotional assumptions about eggs I will have to break if I commit to Whole30: poached eggs go with toast (they suggest salmon, I can do that) and omelettes need cheese. That I will need to overcome.

So I ate my farm fresh poached eggs, about to have a golden kiwi for dessert.

And then finally coffee.

Not so Whole30

It’s hard to believe that in two more weeks I will be celebrating my six-month anniversary in my new job in the development office at ProJeCt of Easton.

Three months in, my husband and I separated. Four months in my boss gave notice. Almost five months in, I received a promotion. Last week, I asked my agency to hire an old acquaintance as a temporary event planner. Our signature fundraiser is six weeks away!

This summer I have written four grants, worked on two collaborative grants, and wrote a letter of interest for a grant. I have three more grants due in the next three weeks.

But in the midst of everything, I’ve had some amazing work adventures but I’ve noticed my natural energy and trips to the gym and being replaced by doughnuts and coffee.

It’s also Marching Band Season with my teenager in her third year in low brass. She’s struggling with a hectic schedule, her fitness waning and her old ear infections coming back. She has a raging one now according to the doctor at Patient First.

She has an appointment with her ENT practice on Thursday. I think she needs tubes. She had them about eight years ago. She needs them again.

My daughter and I both love carbohydrates. I have been weight training now for almost six years consistently and the only thing that keeps me from looking like a totally ripped badass is my weakness for sugar.

I consider myself a lazy bodybuilding princess. I don’t have the hard core discipline to work out daily, but I like to lift. I like results. I like to be strong. But I also like to be lazy.

So food plays into that too.

When my daughter was little, I heavily restricted her dairy hoping it would help clear her head of fluid.

Maybe I need to do that again.

My friend Bill Prystauk (of Crash Palace Productions, author of Bloodletting and Punishment) recommended the Whole30 for my daughter.

I can’t stop thinking about it so I bought the book.

But can we do it?

More to come…

Ends and beginnings

I’ve struggled for quite some time about what to say in this space about my personal life.

For a long time, my husband and I were the couple everyone thought would last forever.

Well, a few years ago, we started facing some challenges. And we tried for three years to work on our relationship.

But, despite the fact that we had a long history and our family, we split.

This past week marked the end of our first month apart.

Reality is still sinking in, still forming.

Her week of vegetarianism

My daughter is a lifelong carnivore. Recently, she’s shown an interest in going vegetarian for a week. She wants to see if she can do it.

Of course she can do it.

Especially since I was a vegetarian for eight years before she was born.

We started with lunch today.

I made peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with carrots. Not only vegetarian but vegan, too.

Dinner was a stir-fry. I made a sauce of Chinese cooking wine, low sodium soy sauce, extra virgin olive oil, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, fresh lemon juice and tahini.

I toasted some sesame seeds in my cast iron skillet.

Cooked some potatoes and Brussel sprouts in the sauce and then added grated radish, carrot and cabbage.

Served with saffron rice.

It was tasty. She enjoyed it.

So we’ll see how the week goes.

I’m already meal planning in my head:

  1. Ravioli
  2. Baked beans and corn muffins
  3. Vegetarian burgers
  4. Breakfast for dinner
  5. Scalloped potatoes and vegetable casserole
  6. Falafel
  7. Homemade pizza
  8. Zucchini cakes
  9. Mexican
  10. African chick pea stew
  11. Salad

Better honed ideas when I get to the kitchen.

Screech… boom

I bought myself a 2015 Volkswagen Jetta with 21,000 miles on it a few days before Thanksgiving. I’ve worked really hard at keeping it clean and in perfect condition.

Last weekend my dad even commented that he was impressed.

It’s the first car I ever picked, purchased and registered all on my own. My dad bought me a few cars from junk yards and pieced them together. My husband and I bought two cars together during our 20-year marriage.

But this is mine.

And today while I was at work someone hit it. Of course, it was a hit and run.

The part that hurts was that I work for a non-profit and I park in a church parking lot. I wasn’t parked on street or in a public garage or in a busy place. It wasn’t a day when our food pantry was distributing food or when AA had a meeting at the church.

I was the first person in the parking lot at 8:15 and my boss parked next to me around 2. I discovered it when I left the office with my colleagues at 4:30. I’d been in and out of the office, but traveled between our locations on foot.

The CEO and my boss stayed with me while I waited for police. You can see our CEO in my car window. I think they were more upset than I was.

The pastor of the church said she would check the surveillance cameras.

I’ve had the car almost 8 months. And I hate to part with the $500.

This is really a story for my journal, but I’ve had a lot of flux in my life lately so I just thought I’d quasi-whine to you.

Maybe they’ll give me a sexy little rental car.

My compost heap makes me happy

When my teen daughter still attended elementary school, I liked to garden. I have a small yard in an urban setting but it was enough to hold some herbs & a few vegetables.

I noticed quickly that my soil was mostly clay. To rectify this, I started composting.

I turned the area under my deck into my pile of decomposing refuse. I took a plastic coffee can with a lid and collected the compostables from our kitchen.

Now that plastic bucket gets stinky. But nothing a session with the hose can’t rectify.

The soil that this makes is so rich and dark.

It’s satisfying.

But it’s the “turning” that makes me happy. That’s when you periodically dig holes and bury your freshest fruit-and-vegetable bits to the bottom of the pile.

I have my own shovel and I love to dig and rearrange and mix all the different stages of compost.

It makes me happy.

Easton’s Heritage Day 2019

My daughter and the Weiner-mobile

I normally don’t enjoy street fairs and community celebrations unless they have a theme that interests me. Carnivals and municipal anniversaries don’t do it for me.

I love the history of Easton’s Heritage Day, especially since I am a history nerd.

When the “founding fathers” signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, it took several days for the messenger to arrive in Easton. He got to town on a Sunday and read the Declaration of Independence on the town circle. Now, for 200 plus years, the town officials plan a community fair downtown and re-enactors read the Declaration of Independence on the circle on the first Sunday after July 4.

My daughter works downtown for Book and Puppet Company, a fun bookstore and let’s just say she helps with “character visits.”

Like when Paddington Bear visited today:

Naughty Paddington

I had also heard that the Grave Cellar at Saint John’s Lutheran Church would be open, so that was enough to entice me out of my anti-Street fair attitude.

Parking at meters would be free for the day or $5 (cash only) at the garage. I found a spot very close to the book store.

And my daughter mocked me for asking the police officer if there was a geographic boundary on the free parking. My use of geographic apparently highlights my nerdness.

The Grave Cellar and Parsons-Taylor House

When St. John’s Church expanded quite some years ago, they moved the graveyard to another local cemetery but some of the graves still exist under the church. Not as creepy as the Paris Catacombs but pretty unusual.

From there we went to the tiny Parsons-Taylor house. George Taylor, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, lived and died there.

My daughter looked in great detail at the craftsmanship of the house and furniture.

And the grazing begins…

We started exploring nearby shops, and we felt a little hungry but didn’t want to eat until we’d seen all the offerings so we shared a slice of buffalo chicken pizza from a new restaurant in town. Then we shared a lavender lemonade from Green Marketplace.

Lavender lemonade

Then we looked at classic cars and city construction equipment and I got a hard hat.

We also saw how the wind twine into sisal braided rope.

Then we meandered down another street and watched some of the kiddie activities and I found the Oscar Mayer Weinermobile. I was very excited.

Donating Blood

And then I saw a sign that a local church was hosting a blood drive. So I registered. The last time I tried to donate blood was 25 years ago, and can you believe they had my address on file from that time period? I didn’t give then because my blood pressure was too high.

I haven’t given since then because tattoos, piercings, anemia and travels to exotic third world countries.

But I’m O-negative when it comes to blood type so I should give. And I did. For the first time.

Then we went to my daughter’s “office” and Paddington Bear came to visit.

Shopping and more food

After work, an artist drew her and she bought a vintage Monarch train case at Salvage Goods.

We also explored the dollar store on the circle. That might have been the only disappointment of the day.

And the teen had some bacon nachos from Porter’s Pub and I had one chicken and one steak taco from the restaurant at 645 Northampton Street that has really good food.

Our last stop was Easton Public Market again for a watermelon lime slush from Modern Crumb.