31.1.10

Looks like a no go...

So, I haven't heard back from the audition people. Looks like I'm not going to be a staaaaah!

And you know what?

I'm so at peace with that! I'm totally okay with not being chosen!

And the weird thing is that, unlike how I used to be, I'm *NOT JUST SAYING THIS*!!

I went and did something that scared me. I think I did a good job!! There were other super talented women auditioning - people with a lot more experience, and who are better at this. I'm okay with not being chosen.

This is such a wonderful feeling, being OKAY with not being the best! Not being the one that was on top!

And now, I'm going to go and make ginger cookies, because they are delicious. :-D

Day 3, and all is well.

I've actually been having a harder time using all my points the last two days! My week changes over on Friday, so I have all my flex points for the weekend, and normally I'm through about half of them by Sunday morning. Not this week! I haven't TOUCHED them yet! In fact, Friday I was under by 4 points, and yesterday, I was under by half a point!

Crazy stuff I tell you.

I was walking (limping) through Shopper's Drug Mart yesterday, and I saw all the Valentine's chocolates there... I was so happy, looking at them, thinking of buying something yummy... And then my heart sank a little bit, remembering that I was taking a break from Chocolate. All those heart shaped boxes, valentines themed Toblerones, bags of Cadbury eggs in pink and red...

Not this year.

Ah well...

Last night, I had 16 points left after supper. I was a little shocked when I realized that, and I figured that I would get myself a treat. Or two.

Ice cream!

Do you know how few yummy Ice Cream options there are out there without chocolate?! Very few. "I've never counted Oreos as chocolate!" Chris piped in. There may have been a very stern look sent his way.

I settled on Pralines and Cream, and it was delicious.

I've been told that 3 weeks is probably too ambitious. 3 weeks is too long for ME to go without chocolate. That's the point! If I can't do something ambitious, then what's the point of doing it at all?! It doesn't prove ANYthing to me!

I will do this!

I haven't yet decided if "Epicurious" is going to be an exception... It might be. We bought tickets a few weeks ago, and it's our reward for having dealt with our horrible neighbour for so long, and WINNING, dammit! Massimo Capra is going to be there!! I'm really, really excited about it, and I'm trying to save lots of my FP for it!

Re-reading this, it's a very long, bloggy, disjointed post! But, I'm going to leave it JUST as it is.

29.1.10

This is me not puking...

I can do this without puking! I can do this without puking!

Day 1...

... and my resolve is weakening.

Today is day 1 without chocolate... My life has become a bleak wasteland, a colourless desert of dessertlessness...

It is 9:26am.

But seriously, folks... So far, so good. I finished off last night with Kisses and Hugs of the Hershey variety, and went to sleep. I hardly ever eat chocolate this early in the morning... I find I'm missing it MORE than usual though. Probably because I know I CAN'T HAVE IT, and that drives me a bit crazy.

I think part of the craziness is nerves. I'm auditioning tonight for a Musical, and this will be my first audition ever. Unless you count Canadian Idol. Which I hope you don't.

(I was young and stupid. Erm. Younger and Stupider.)

So for today, my mantra is: "You can do this without puking. You can do this without puking."

Gosh, I could really use some chocolate right now...

*sigh*

27.1.10

Chocolate.

As you can tell, I love chocolate. Love love love love love. Dark, milk, white... Dipped, plain, liquid... Filled with ganache, or nuts, or caramel... Flavoured with mint, orange, ANYthing.

Anything from a cheap "chocolate" from the dollar store to high-end, melt-in-your-mouth truffles.

Chocolate makes me happy.









So why am I giving it up?!

That's right, I am going to do a 3 week NO CHOCOLATE CHALLENGE!!

Chocolate and I have an unhealthy relationship. I can't resist it; it follows me around, clinging to my hips and thighs. I realize that SOME chocolate is fine, but I have been eating FAR TOO MUCH of that luscious stuff. And while searching for my seemingly walkabout willpower, I realized -

I need to be the MASTER of the chocolate cravings.

So, starting Friday, January 29th, I will not eat ANY CHOCOLATE until Friday, February 19th, which is the day I go on staycation.

"But wait!" you say. "That's over... VALENTINE'S DAY!!!"

Yuuuuuup! I will not eat ANY chocolate for Valentine's day. I don't need chocolate to know I'm in love. I don't need chocolate to have a lovely time.

(Gah! What have I gotten myself into?! Wish me luck!!!)

25.1.10

Dear...

Dear future Child or Children...

I can hardly wait to meet you - I love you so much already, and all I want to do is be your Mommy.

But I hope you understand why I'm waiting.

I want to be the very BEST Mommy to you that I can possibly be, and right now, I'm not there yet. I want you to have a Mommy who can give you everything you need, and some of the things you want. I want you to have a Mommy who can take you outside and play soccer, and build snowmen, and run after you at the park. I want you to have a Mommy who can teach you how to swim, and how to ride a bike. I want you to have a Mommy who can teach you to be healthy, and happy.

And most of all, I don't want you to have to deal with having a Mommy who is too tired to play with you all the time. Who cries all the time. Who gets out of breath climbing the stairs. I don't ever want you to get teased because your Mommy is so fat, and can never do anything with you. I don't ever want to hold you back because I am so unhealthy.

I wish, all the time, that I was ready for you now. I feel like part of me is missing, and I know that part is you. I see other people have children, and it makes my heart ache to bring you into the world. I want to be selfish, and see you sooner, but I know that waiting for you a little while longer will be good for me, and will make your life SO many times better than it would be right now.

Whenever I feel this way, I will look at this letter, and remember that, because I'm waiting, you will be healthier, and happier, and have a better chance at the wonderful life you deserve.

You deserve the world, my very beloved child/ren.

More love than you can imagine,

Mommy

24.1.10

I *REALLY* love Dinner Parties!

Dinner went wonderfully!

Annika's curd was delicious! Conversation was easy, and there was lots of laughter.

I'm so happy right now... It's lovely. I totally didn't take pictures of the food, but it was lovely!

Oh, and the chicken ended up being thyme roasted, instead of rosemary orange.

I love dinner parties!!

Even when I'm the one hosting them, lol!!

Tonight, there will be 5 people eating supper at my place... Those of you who know me know how challenging it is for me, making friends. The fact that 3 of the people eating at my house tonight don't actually HAVE to be there is pretty amazing to me.

The menu?

Homemade pasta with olive oil and fresh parmesan
Spinach salad with apple, raisins, and maple-pecans
Orange-rosemary chicken

And then for dessert, Pavlova. There are meringue shells in the oven atm, and Annika will be making up a curd to go on top.

I'm actually remarkably un-stressed, too! My lovely husband is making fresh pasta right now, so it only takes about 5 minutes to cook at supper time. The chicken should be quick to pan-sear and then just plunk in the oven with a probe thermometer. Salad is not exactly challenging to make.

Full report to follow. :D

18.1.10

Potato Gnocchi...

Did I mention that *I* am a kitchen Goddess?

Today, I made potato gnocchi. This came out of my love of kitchen gadgetry... Last week, I bought a gnocchi rolling board (It was 3$!!) because I thought it was lovely, and cute.

Kitchenware is my weakness...

So because of the 3$ gnocchi roller, today I went and bought myself a 45$ potato ricer, so my gnocchi didn't get 'stodgy'...



Did you know that peeling and ricing 'fresh from a 400 degree oven' potatos is a little burny on your fingers? All in the name of un-stodginess, I tell you!!

I'll give you the recipe at the end of this, but first... a few more pictures!

 

 

 




Yummmmmy!! I had to add more flour a couple of times, because the tests I did were a little too light and fluffy - So fluffy they were kind of falling apart.

BTW, for me, the recipe makes 6 servings... I was going to do 4 servings, but when I saw how much dough the recipe made, I knew that there would be more than enough for 6.

I paired the gnocchi with a super simple tomato sauce - 1 can of Hunt's No Salt Added tomato sauce, 1 tbsp sugar, 1 tbsp olive oil, garlic, basil, oregano and sage. I sauteed the garlic and spices in the olive oil until fragrant, and then added the tomato sauce and sugar, and let it simmer on low until the gnocchi were done.

Perfect Potato Gnocchi

Copyright 2000 Television Food Network, G.P. All rights reserved

Prep Time:
45 min
Cook Time:
1 hr 2 min
Serves:
4 to 6 servings (4 servings at 6 points each, 6 servings at 4 points each)

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds (about 4) baking potatoes, like russets
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

Directions

Pierce the potatoes several times so that moisture can escape during baking. Bake the potatoes in a preheated 400 degrees F oven for 1 hour until fork tender. Peel the potatoes while they are still hot and press them through a potato ricer. Put the potatoes in a large bowl with salt, baking powder, and egg white. Add the flour a little at a time and mix with your hands until the mixture forms a rough dough. Do not over-work the dough.

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface. Gently knead the dough for 1 or 2 minutes until smooth, adding a little bit more flour, if necessary, to keep it from sticking.

Break off a piece of the dough and roll it back and forth into a rope, about the thickness of your index finger. Cut the rope into 1-inch pieces. Gently roll each piece down a wooden gnocchi board while pressing a small dimple with your finger. The gnocchi should be slightly curved and marked with ridges. This will allow the pillows to hold sauce when served.

Boil the gnocchi in batches in plenty of salted water. The gnocchi are done about 2 minutes after they float to the surface, remove with a slotted spoon, and serve. If not cooking immediately, place the gnocchi in a single layer on a baking pan dusted with flour. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 12 hours.

Note: If the gnocchi start to feather and fall apart in boiling water, you need more flour. If the gnocchi don't float after 2 minutes and are hard, you used too much flour.

17.1.10

Apparently, crackers *DO* expire!

Today, I learned something:

Most boxes of crackers have a 'best before' date on the top of the box.

Most of the crackers in my cupboard had a best before date in the early 2008's.

Needless to say, they're no longer in my cupboard.

Actually, there are quite a few things no longer in my cupboard! It's been a LONG time since they'd been cleaned (2008, maybe? :D) and they needed a good going-through.

Will I ever eat the marshmallows that have turned into deadly projectiles? Unlikely. The old box of Minute Rice? Erm, no.

And I certainly didn't realize that I had a box of Lipton Chicken Noodle soup in there that expired in 2007!!!

I guess it's easy to see what we don't miss eating, based on what I we haven't been using. And now, I can actually see everything in there, AND there's room for more!!

Among the remaining items, a few things I'm going to need to figure out something to do with:

-2 bags of cornmeal
-2 1/2 bags of icing sugar
-A multitude of "Hippie" things: - Flax, Bran, Sunflower seeds, etc etc.
-An awful lot of dried apples
-2 bottles of clam juice >.<'
-Several cans of stewed tomatoes

Any ideas? I'm not so keen on just throwing them all in a baking dish and baking at 350 for an hour... :D

16.1.10

Word to the wise...

Be good to your knees. You really, really need them for everything, and when they hurt, it makes your whole life a lot more difficult.

And I'm saying this from experience. *wince*

12.1.10

Day 366 ~ Another year begun.

Today is the beginning of a new year for me - a new year of becoming a healthier me.

On this sort of occasion, people seem to like to look back and wax poetic about what the past year has brought, and I thought I might do a little of that, if you all will indulge me?

Things that Chantel has learned in the past year:

- Thank God for Anti-Depressents.
- Most recipes call for WAY more oil than is really needed.
- Salad can be tasty!
- Sometimes, if you let people try to do their own thing, they can really surprise you, in a good way!
- Homemade bagels, pasta, and bread are WAY better!
- "A moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips" is a stupid thing to say.
- There are incredible, supportive people out there, if you let them be there for you.
- Cheese? Worth the points.
- Chocolate? Worth the points.
- Chicken wings? Not at all. *edit - for me*
- Speaking of chicken wings - When you lose weight, your arms get all flappy...
- How to drive, and the incredible sense of freedom that can bring.
- Hunger is NOT an emergency.
- How to make real, and really delicious, hot chocolate.
- 8 oz of meat is NOT a necessity at every supper.
- Protein + Carbs = More filling.
- Tofu is not the enemy!!
- Camping in a tent can be SO liberating!
- Camping in a tent can be cold and miserable.
- Sometimes, if people want to loan you their lovely, heated trailer, "Yes" is a good answer.
- Patience, compassion, and a sense of humour are three very top-of-the-list things in a good husband.
- Being hot doesn't hurt either...
- I have a very, VERY good husband.
- That being said...

I am enough, in and of myself. I am all I need for my own emotional well-being. I am stronger than I thought, and more persistant than I gave myself credit for. I am kind and compassionate for others, and I can be for myself as well! It's allowed!!

What do I want for this coming year? Well, I guess I'd like to see a 2 as the beginning number of my weight, which will be an incredible thing. I'd also like to fit into a size 22 pant, since that will mean that I can buy pants where I live.

But really, I want to keep going with what I'm doing right now. I'm living a normal, good life, where food isn't the center of my attention. I'm active and getting more so. I am so content, and joyful, and it is very good.

Here's to another year of points-tracking, portion counting, and fulfillment.

11.1.10

One Year

Tomorrow, January 12th, 2010, will be the one year anniversary of the day I rejoined Weight Watchers.

Wow...

10.1.10

IMMD

(for those of you who don't get the IMMD reference, check out It Made My Day)

Today, I ate sushi with chopsticks that looked like lightsabers. I was Darth Vader, and Chris was Luke Skywalker.

IMMD

(PS. If you're ever looking for a present for me, Thinkgeek would be a great place to start!)

(PPS. Why would you want to buy me gifts? Because I'm fabulous, of course!)

7.1.10

It's good to have choices!

"It's lunch time on the farm. The animals are very hungry - But where is Farmer Brown?"

It's wonderful to have options when it comes to meals out. Today's lunch comes from our cafeteria.

Today's special? Turkey Lasagna (Mmm, and nice and healthy!) with...

Uh oh! Caesar Salad and Garlic Bread?

Don't panic! You can always... SUBSTITUTE!

So instead of caesar salad, I asked for green salad, and topped it with Kraft Calorie Wise Zesty Italian (5 calories per tbsp! Wow!) and instead of garlic toast, I had a slice of their homemade, whole-wheat bread, nothing on it. A delicious lunch, for WAY fewer calories than the original!

Top that off with a slice of nice banana bread (instead of the butter tart I'd been eyeing up) and a Diet Pepsi, and I feel VERY good about myself!

Add that to the Jogging I did last night (6 minutes, yay!) and weight lifting (small weights, to help tone my arms) and I feel like I'm in a GREAT place here!

6.1.10

Welcome to a new decade!

Hi there! Remember me? I'm that person who writes this thing...

Is supposed to be writing this blog, at any rate! Sorry for the lapse, oh Ever-So-Cool people who read my Blog!

Christmas was fabulous, other than the lovely colds that Santa dropped off for Chris and me! We spent lots of nice time at home, relaxing, and it was wonderful. I got lots of nice presents (I'm so lucky!) and, I think, gave people some things that they really wanted.

I took about 3 weeks off of WW, though, and ate. It was delicious, and totally worth all of the 7.5 lbs I put back on. Yup, 7.5 lbs. Do I mind that I gained some weight? Not a single bit!!! I had a wonderful time, and I'm back on plan now. If I'm going to be healthy for life, part of that is realizing that real life has times of feast, and times of calm. There are holidays, and vacations, and you eat! We all eat! Food is for enjoying!!

But speaking of Weight Watchers, I had one of the most humbling (in a good way) experiences of my life recently:

My aunt recently got Lifetime!! She looks amazing, and she has worked SO hard!! When she got lifetime, she asked me to be her guest, to come to the meeting with her and be there for her. It was such an honour for her to ask that...

But then, she had been talking to her Leader about me, and her Leader asked if *I* would get up and speak at the meeting!!! About how I'm doing this, what changed, etc... I just talked briefly - Maybe 3 minutes (correct me if I'm wrong - I could have TOTALLY been blathering on, lol!), but they clapped at the end... I could feel all the pride in the room.

And then the leader said that, as a guest speaker, I should at least get some swag... And she gave me the 10% keychain, and a 100 lb "washer" thingummy - apparently the first one they've ever given out in Whitehorse!!

It was amazing, and kind of surreal... I had people come up afterwards and shake my hand, and one wonderful lady (Blueberry Picker, whose real name escapes me right now - I'm so sorry!!) who even said that she read my blog!!

I am so humbled, and touched... These are the kinds of life-experiences you just can't measure with any available scale, or pay for with money...