I have been saving the most exciting news for you all week long. Ready? Hang on to your hats folks, because I vacuumed all of my carpets this week! Woo-hoo!
I know that sounds kind of crazy, doesn’t it? However, to me it means that my inner stitches are finally healing! Whew. Noticeable progress. I’ll take it! I still don’t feel like I did prior to surgery, nor do I expect to for a while. This I have learned to accept. I’m just grateful for the good days and know that eventually, the bad days will be fewer and further between. Until then however, be on the lookout for some wicked menopausal posts because I recently had my first hot flash. Can I just say that it feels strange to be going through menopause at 42? I know that many of you brave gals had hysterectomies in your twenties and thirties so I’ll try not to complain too awful much about it. Promise!
In other news, I am approaching the end of my first week of self-employment. I have to admit, it feels so good to be useful. Wonderfully, fantastically good. I’m finding that I’m putting forth the same nurturing attention into my art that I did while caregiving. While preparing my wares to be shipped off to the three lovely ladies who made purchases from me this week I packed up a bit of pride, a lot of gratitude and much love. The same goes out to each of you who have generated traffic for me on Etsy and Facebook. The simple act of you spreading the word is extremely appreciated.
Anyway, here is what I’ve been working on this week:
I’m finding that I need to develop a schedule just like I had when I worked outside of my home. Having my studio so close to the kitchen is NOT a good thing. Allowing blocks of time for exercise, painting, tending to business, blogging and eating will make this transition much easier. This I need to work on.
Speaking of food……
Although I am not a vegetarian, I just don’t find myself eating meat as much as I used to. Oh, I love me a good, juicy hamburger once in a while. The sloppier the better, too. But most days I lean towards eating meat-free products like Boca, Morningstar, Gardenburger; even tofu if it’s prepared for me. I don’t have enough experience to know how to make it taste good from home but willingly order it at restaurants. My husband on the other hand, loves his meat. If he didn’t have 3 kidney stones taking up space in his body right now he’d probably be on the Atkins Diet for the rest of his life.
We have a rule at our house – if you didn’t cook it, you don’t complain about it. Since I’m doing most of the cooking now that I’m home, I thought I’d try something new that I saw at the store:
These were on sale and I bought three of them. Gardein has an entire line of meatless foods and you could easily have one every night of the week without eating the same thing twice. The one you don’t see in the photo is the one I prepared. It was sautéed beefless tips and I thought I’d prepare them with a big bowl of spinach, various lettuces, tomatoes and cucumber. Sounds good, right? Well, it smelled fantastic. When Craig came home from work I had just finished heating them on the stove and tossed the tips in with the salad. He hadn’t had lunch and was pretty hungry.
During dinner we talked about the usual day’s events. I was grateful to contribute to the conversation for a change without once including words like surgery, pain or swelling and we chatted about this and that without really ever discussing what we were eating. I didn’t want to say anything about the faux-beef tips, hoping that instead Craig would say, ‘Wow! These are outstanding!’
But, he didn’t. Neither did I.
In all honesty – and no offense to Gardein – but, they were awful.
But, Craig being the kind of guy he is, ate every bite of his dinner and didn’t mention the ole’ food switcheroo that had taken place. Finally, I said something.
“So, what did you think of dinner?”
“Well,” he said. “It was, um – interesting.”
We both agreed that it was the texture that we couldn’t get over. It looked like meat; it smelled heavenly. But as soon as you bit into it, the texture was very spongy. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with the other two packages. I’m not going to let them go to waste but I’ll definitely be hiding them at the bottom of a bowl with a bunch of other foods piled on top.
I do have a point to this post, actually. Craig listens to NPR regularly and heard a news story about a meatless food that actually tastes like meat. Chicken, specifically. It’s called Beyond Meat and has done tremendously well in blind taste tests. If you go to the webpage and look at the photo, the texture actually looks like chicken and according to those who’ve eaten it, it breaks apart in your mouth the same way chicken does. That’s the great news. The less fortunate news (at least for now) is that it’s only available in the Pacific Northwest Whole Foods prepared section of foods. Check here to see if it’s in your area.
The stats are pretty impressive. Three ounces of Beyond Meat is 100 calories. Here, for those who are interested, is the ingredients list:
Water, Soy Protein Isolate, Pea Protein Isolate, Amaranth, Natural Vegan Chicken Flavor (Maltodextrin, Yeast Extract, Natural Flavoring), Soy Fiber, Carrot Fiber, Expeller-Pressed Canola Oil, Dipotassium Phosphate, Titanium Dioxide, White Vinegar
Has anyone tried or heard of this product? If so, I’d love to know what you think. For those of you who haven’t, would you consider trying something like this?
Have a good weekend, everyone. Thanks for reading today