ANARIE   56,386
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Such a lovely time for freggies!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

I'm just swimming in great fruit and veggies! A friend whose parents live in the Rio Grande Valley (where much fruit is grown) brought me a little watermelon and a pineapple. Baby kale was on sale earlier in the week, and I've been making green smoothies. I went shopping yesterday and came home with strawberries (4 lbs/ $5), mushrooms ($3/lb), red and green grapes ($1.99/lb), crookneck squash (88 cents/lb), and a few cherries. (Not cheap.) My garden is just finishing up the carrots and beet greens, the purslane (edible weed) is ready to collect, and probably next week I'll have the first ripe tomatoes.

Tonight I'm making BLT P soup-- bacon, leek, tomato, and potato. It also has celery and carrots in it. I've got some no-knead bread dough ready to go in the oven, so I'll have hot, crusty bread to go with it. Yummers!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEEANN8 6/2/2012 9:10PM

    Hmmm.... you're making me hungry. All I have left in the house are some salad greens and some oranges. And the only thing ready to pick in the (tiny little) garden is a few small jalapenos (and I had a couple of those mixed in with some tuna at lunch)

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ECOMUFFIN 5/26/2012 7:25PM

    Yum! One of these years I'll get my garden to grow!

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ANARIE 5/25/2012 2:35PM

    I'm trying to learn how to choose and eat figs. We actually have a lot of fig trees around here, but you have to race the birds. They usually get them just before they're ripe, but if you pick them green to beat the birds, they don't taste good and they apparently don't ripen off the tree.

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ARCHIMEDESII 5/25/2012 2:16PM

    Cool ! I went veggie shopping this morning. I went to Haymarket. That's where you can buy leftover veggies for cheap from the veggie stands. I bought three containers of cocktail tomatoes for $1 each. I bought a bag of vidalia onions for $1. I almost bought a tray of fresh figs.

I emoticon figs. They were a little pricey. the vendors wanted $8-$10 a tray. each tray had 8 large figs. that would have made those figs a dollar each. yikes ! they looked so good. the blackberries looked good too, but I passed on those. I then went to my favorite Asian market to pick up some bok choy, bean sprouts and Japanese yams. Have you ever tried a Japanese yam ? They're actually a tad sweeter than regular sweet potatoes.

Oh and even better ? On wednesday, my local farmer's market started for the season. So, I got a fresh head of romaine lettuce.

I love summer ! veggie season !!

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Alcohol IS evil

Monday, May 21, 2012

Oddly, I have drunk alcohol twice in a little over a week. I don't do that often, mostly because of the calories, but on the last Friday of the semester I went to happy hour with colleagues from the community college and had about half a beer. (We went to a brewpub that offers a sampler of four 5-oz glasses, and I drank half of one and about a tablespoon of the other three.) Today I went with a different bunch of colleagues to a little artsy-craftsy town out in the countryside, and we went to a vineyard and did a tasting. It was six small samples, between 1 & 2 ounces each. That was actually a bit more than I wanted, but you stand there at a counter and it would be awkward not to finish one before they give you the next. (They have you use the same glass, which seemed odd to me. The only time she switched out any of our glasses was when I finished a red and switched to a sweet white dessert wine.)

Both times, even that small amount of alcohol hurt my stomach and just made me feel icky. I came home and crashed for an hour or so both times. Today I then went for a walk, and that actually made me feel better, but overall I have to say I understand why they call it inTOXICation. I just feel like something has been put in my body that's not supposed to be there. It's not just the stereotypical stomach upset and headache. My whole body feels like when you've taken medication that doesn't agree with you. It's like my blood is just very mildly irritated and it's spreading that irritation through the muscles.

The wines were all very pleasant, actually, but I just don't think I'm ever going to drink a whole glass at once again, unless it's over the course of several hours.

And the funny thing is that I wasn't drunk. I didn't really even feel a buzz after the beer. Today I was definitely buzzed, but I could have passed a field sobriety test; I walked a straight line just to test myself in case the designated driver needed a navigator. I absolutely would not have driven-- I don't drive after any alcohol at all-- but I don't think I was anywhere close to the legal limit. That's pretty consistent with my college experience, though. I would get buzzed after half a drink, and after four or five I would still be buzzed to exactly the same extent-- but broke. I never tried to drink more because I was too cheap!

Oh, and I broke my no-sugar streak. emoticon

I gave in to peer pressure and half a serving of ancho dark chocolate terrine with cinnamon creme anglaise and pomegranate seeds. If you're gonna break your sugar streak, that's the way to do it!

So... alcohol bad. Chocolate good. Maybe that should be my new motto!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

AANGEL3 5/22/2012 7:42PM

    Chocolate is ALWAYS good! emoticon

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ARCHIMEDESII 5/22/2012 9:41AM

    I'll say this in as soft a voice as possible... Still got your mini hang over ? The problem with wine tastings is that some people (not you) tend to have a few too many samples. I've been to tastings where some people just kept filling their glasses even though they knew that they'd be tasting more wines. They seemed totally oblivious to how sloshed they were.

While I'm not a big alcohol drinker either, I do like an occasional wine tasting. Alcohol doesn't effect me the same way it does you. What effects me ? fried food. too oily, greasy food does a serious number on my stomach. I love corn dogs, but they don't love me anymore. ditto pepperoni. I can have exactly 3-4 slices. if I eat more, I'll be making deposits with the porcelain god. teehee... don't worry, I won't lol while you're head is aching.

Do you have any fresh ginger ? chew on some raw ginger. that helps.


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HIKETOHEIGHTS 5/22/2012 12:05AM

    I like it! Good thing we now know chocolate is good for you. I remember I went through a time period in my life where alcohol was irritating my stomach, but then it stopped. Not sure why that is though. I rarely drink, but when I do my stomach is fine unlike a decade ago or so. Go figure!

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Weird bargains

Monday, May 14, 2012

I went to the grocery store for strawberries and asparagus, and what did I find tucked back in one corner? Champion sports bras and singlets for $5.00! I got me one of each for a little over half what I would normally pay for one. Not what I expected to come home with, but it's better to impulse buy a bra than a quart of ice cream!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HIKETOHEIGHTS 5/15/2012 8:48PM

    I try to get mine on a bargain too. They can be so expensive, lucky finds for you & way better than ice cream. emoticon

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ARCHIMEDESII 5/15/2012 9:21AM

    I'll bet the bra was cheaper than the strawberries and asparagus !! LOL !!!!

that's a great find, Anarie !

emoticon emoticon

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DEEANN8 5/14/2012 4:42PM

    Lucky find ! emoticon

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IDLETYME 5/14/2012 8:46AM

    That's funny! Lucky find. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Shopping karma and sugar karma

Sunday, May 13, 2012

I had stopped doing this, but I have to brag a little about yesterday's shopping score. I stopped at the grocery store on the way home from a happy hour (!), which could have been a disaster since I'm discovering that alcohol and I are not friends-- I had about half a beer and it made me feel strange for 6 or 7 hours. But not only was there only one small impulse buy, I also got some serious bargains. I came home with:

--1 gallon skim milk
-- bag of 4 frozen Lightlife brand portobello veggie burger (new to me, but there was a coupon)
--2 pounds butter
--1 tub spreadable light butter
--can of light hot cocoa mix, 26 servings (I use it as a calcium supplement--it has 35% DRV for 20 cals)
--2 one-pound boxes shredded wheat cereal
--1 box generic Cheerios
--1 qt cottage cheese
--1 can crushed tomatoes
--1 pkg sugar-free gum (my impulse buy)
--3 one-pot size coffee samples
--3 large mangos
--2 boxes Nutrisse foam haircolor

And the grand total? Wait for it....

$22.14 !!!

The haircolor was on a clearance shelf for $1.99 and I had 2 coupons for $2 each, so that was totally free. Usually that brand is around $8.99 a box. It's one shade lighter than I usually use, but I find that on my hair, anything lighter than medium brown turns out pretty much the same color. Then the cereal (store brand) was on sale for $1.98 and there was a coupon for $3 off of 3 boxes. The butter was on clearance for $1 a pound because it's getting close to its sell-by, but I'll freeze it and it'll be fine. The light butter is Smart Balance brand, and there was a $1 coupon in last Sunday's paper; I have 2 copies, and the catalina or carolina or whatever they call it at the checkout spit out another coupon that's good until August. If I like this brand, it'll be cheap for me until fall. So... all in all, a pretty good haul.

The other thing is that I'm on day 6 of the no-sugar streak, and it's doing me good! By day 3 the cravings were gone, and for the last 2 days I've been much less hungry overall. I'm not fanatical about it; I eat sugar-sweetened yogurt that I already bought, and I use regular jam (although part of the time I've been using some freezer jam that my mom made which has a lot more fruit than average and might have been made with Splenda.) I have some diet soda, too, which helps, but I haven't been drinking as much of it the past few days, either. Anyway, my calorie totals are looking good, and I think I've lost a little weight already, so I'm back to where I was before I overate on Easter. Still 4 or 5 pounds to go before I'm officially not overweight, and another 10 that I would really like to lose after that, but at least it's moving in the right direction!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

INKEDPETALS45 5/14/2012 4:11PM

    What a great shopping trip! I love finding bargains on stuff I'll actually use. :-)

emoticon on 6 days of no sugar. I tried that at the beginning of the month and fell of the wagon after day 4. Hitting it again this week thanks to your blog!!

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ARCHIMEDESII 5/13/2012 3:06PM

    Anarie, feel free to brag ! That's an awesome "haul" from the grocery store.

Believe me, nothing feels better than finding a sale at the store and saving money ! And goodness knows that hair color ain't cheap. Not that I use it, I'm too cheap to color my hair. LOL !!!

Great deals !

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ERINMARIE424 5/13/2012 12:28AM

    Awesome deals at the grocery store! I love when I find great deals like that!

Good job on reducing your sugar and getting past those first few difficult days!

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Accountability and bread

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Two unrelated topics, actually!

I've been trying hard to start a "no refined sugar" streak, and failing because I keep telling myself, "Eh, I'll start tomorrow" (especially when someone offers me a free cookie sample!) Then I read someone else's blog about using the ticker for accountability. I wish I remembered whose it was, but it was just one of those, "Click, read, realize later that that was really inspiring" situations. Anyway, I went in and reset my ticker from weight (which I didn't keep updated anyway) to "days since," and it's already helping! I've finally made it to day 2.

I baked some of the sourdough bread that I made by making regular bread dough and leaving it out for a few days. It was pretty good, but not like San Francisco sourdough good. The local wild yeasties around here apparently just aren't that flavorful-- when I've tried to make my own starter in the past, it's always been kind of blah. Still, it's good to know that it works. Now I have the remaining dough in the fridge to bake one serving at a time in my 1/2 pint dutch oven.

Still no luck on the small covered pot search. I want a 2-qt cast iron dutch oven, but I want it for under $20, and no one has leapt forward to accommodate me on that.
There's one more place I plan to check in the next few days, and if they don't have one, I'll settle for a ceramic casserole I saw for about $15.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEEANN8 5/10/2012 4:24PM

    Hmmm.... I'm trying to remember... but I think Wal-mart (of all places) sells cast iron cookware. Have you tried there?

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FRIENDOFBACH 5/9/2012 12:18AM

  I need that "no refined sugar" streak.

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