Friday, June 11, 2010
Oh man I was on a roll. I was leaving work on time and made some ' me" time every night except tonight. I only just got home from work a little while ago. I was so tired my dinner consisted of freshly popped corn in1 Tbsp of olive oil. Still within my calories though.
We had a training in our office today and that set me way back in my workload. Next week we have all day trainings on Mon - Tues- and Wed. I guess I stayed to get ahead of my work for next week.
Am I a workaholic or just stupid? Maybe a little of both. I am sending myself some
Thursday, June 10, 2010
Or are you just sitting on the sidelines? If you are you are doing yourself such a disservice.
I honestly miss it when I can not get in all of my Sparking. I try to take advantage of all that Spark People has to offer. The very basics I do everyday is track my food, water, and fitness. No matter how busy I am with work or whatever I make sure I jump on to take care of that.
There is just oh so much more here on Spark People. We have the many Challenges you can take part in, the Teams to participate in, exercise demo videos, recipes, articles, and tutorials. I really hope you subscribe to their various daily emails they send out.
Yesterday 2 of those Spark emails hit me smack in the face. It was as if they were just speaking to me. Now I know that weren't but it is almost like magic; when I need to be reminded of something the article or email suddenly appears for me to read.
The 1st one was the Exercise Tip of the Day. I sit at a desk all day long in front of a computer. The evenings after work when my computer decides to behave I am sitting in front of it all night till I go to sleep. I am constantly looking for stretches to do to relieve the tension in my neck and shoulders. Yesterday's topic was the Neck Stretch. Like I said it was talking to me, calling my name.
The 2nd one was Healthy Reflections. I love this daily email, it always make you think. I have read this one before months ago but yesterday it really got my attention. It was titled, "Are you a good friend to yourself?"
Stop laughing for those who know me. I am trying! I am getting better at it. It was talking about if you met yourself would you want to make friends with person. The 2nd part of it dealt with whether or not you cut yourself as much slack as you do your friends. This is what caught my attention. Not the idea of cutting myself slack because i don't think I beat my self up or go negative on myself. But I don't cut myself slack by making time for me. I am always taking care of others instead of taking care of me. I am getting better at this though.
I learn something new on Spark People everyday either through their articles, members blogs, team threads, or the daily emails I get sent to me that I subscribe to. Stop sitting n the sidelines and jump into all Spark has to offer and subscribe to these emails.
It is simple. Go to your Start Page. Underneath where it says Welcome and then your screen name
Click on email preferences
Click on Email tab.
Check all of them. They are a wealth of information.
It really is true, the more you Spark the better you do. One reason why is because the more you Spark the more you learn. The more you learn, the better equipped we are to be successful on our journey to health.
Wednesday, June 09, 2010
It actually feels strange not having that albatross around my neck. Stress is finally taking a backseat in my life. It almost feels eerie. I am sleeping so much better and am in a better mood.
This week my computer at home has taken on a life of it's own. Monday I think I was on the computer for 5 minutes before I decided it was not worth the battle. I was afraid that perhaps it had been hit by a virus but I did not have time to sit on the phone with my Service Provider to iron it out. Last night was not much better so I just turned it off and relaxed for the night. Normally all of that would have put me in a tailspin.
I take my Sparking serious. I feel bad and I feel guilty when I am not on Spark People. I really feel bad when I am not current and up to date in my Friend Feed. I stress when I am behind in my Sparking. I feel as though I am letting my Spark Buddies down.
Not sure what is going on but I really have been feeling calm and taking things in stride. I am quite sure the new team I am on, the Stress Busting Challenge has a lot to do with it. Debbie, thanks for inviting me and if you have stress in your life I invite you to go take a look at the team.
Another team I recently joined, Fierce, Fabulous, and Unstoppable Spark Warriors has had the same effect. That Team is always having us face issues that can cause stress in our lives and gives us challenges to combat those issues. The Team shows us different ways to handle or deal with clutter, yes clutter causes stress, money issues, organizational skills, etc. To me this team is like one big destressing workshop where we face these issues headon. We have all the support of our fellow Spark Warriors there to encourage us and share with us how they overcame their "monkeys " on their backs.
I know that it certainly helps that I now have a steady paycheck coming in. It feels like the weight of the world has been lifted off my shoulders. Money issues were a huge source of my stress. Money is often the root of most people's stress.
I am proud of myself for not throwing my computer out the window. I am proud of myself for taking time off this weekend for ME time. I am proud of myself for not obsessing on how far behind I am.
I know I will catch up once these computer issues are resolved and worrying about that will not get me anyplace. I think I am most proud for that - worrying less.
Monday, June 07, 2010
Spelt has a light, slightly sweet, nutty flavor. The use of spelt dates back to about 5000 BC, when it was first cultivated in the region now called Iran. A kernel of spelt looks like a large grain of rice; it has a tough outer husk that protects its nutrients. Removing the husk makes spelt costly to process, so this ancient grain all but vanished in the United States until it was rediscovered about 12 years ago by a grain purveyor in the Midwest. Even though it does contain gluten, spelt seems to be tolerated by most wheat-sensitive people. Please check with your Doctor 1st if you are allergic to wheat.
Spelt is found in cereals and in baked goods, such as crackers, cookies, and breads. It is also available in flake form, or as a whole grain or flour.
Spelt can increase your energy level
Spelt is easier for your body to digest than other grains
Spelt is highe in protein than wheat
You will not eat any harmful pesticides with your Spelt - it is grown naturally (pesticide free)
If you are gluten-sensitive, you may be able to include spelt based foods in your diet
Spelt reduces the risk of Atherosclerosis
Prevent Heart Failure with a Whole Grains Breakfast
Significant Cardiovascular Benefits for Postmenopausal Women
Spelt and Other Whole Grains Substantially Lower Type 2 Diabetes Risk
Fiber from Whole Grains and Fruit Protective against Breast Cancer
Homemde Spelt Pasta
Ingredients (Serves 2)
2 cups 100% Spelt flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
Water, as needed
Combine flour, eggs and salt. Add water, one tablespoon at a time, until dough becomes firm (not sticky). After each tablespoon of water, check to see if dough has firmed. Amount of water will vary depending on your flour.
Form a rectangle and roll dough as thin as you can. If dough starts to spring back when rolled, let the dough rest for ten minutes then resume rolling.
Trim the edges of the dough and roll the flat sheet of dough into a jelly roll. Using a very sharp knife, slice the roll into small rounds. Unroll the rounds into long noodles, and toss them with flour on a baking sheet to dry, or cook immediately.
Fresh noodles will only take about 4 minutes to cook - they are done when they float to the top of the water.
Sweet and Hearty Spelt Bread Recipe
To cook this Spelt bread recipe you will need a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan and patience. Unlike white bread this recipe for Spelt bread will take twice as long to leaven. From start to finish, it will take 2 - 3 hours.
Ingredients (Makes 1 Loaf)
1 1/2 cups warm water (just barely hot to the touch)
1 package active dry yeast (1/4 ounce)
2 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon whole flaxseed (optional)
2 1/2 cups whole spelt flour
1 1/2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 tablespoon salt
1 3/4 cups whole spelt flour
1 tablespoon butter, melted
In a large bowl, mix warm water, yeast, 2 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar, and 1 tablespoon of flaxseed (optional). Mix in 2 1/2 cups of spelt flour. Let set for 30 minutes, or until big and bubbly.
Mix in 1 1/2 tablespoons melted butter, 2 1/2 tablespoons of brown sugar, and salt. Stir in 1 3/4 cups of spelt flour. Flour a flat surface and knead with spelt flour until it pulls away from the counter but is still sticky to touch. This may take an additional 1 to 2 cups of spelt flour. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to coat the surface of the dough. Cover with a dishtowel. Let rise in a warm place until doubled (about 30 minutes).
Punch down and place in greased 9 x 5 inch loaf pan. Allow to rise until dough has topped the pan by one inch. Depending on your yeast this will take between
1 - 2 hours.
Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 25 to 30 minutes; do not over bake. Lightly brush the tops of loaves with 1 tablespoon of melted butter when done to prevent crust from getting hard. Cool completely.
Ingredients (Serves 2)
1 1/4 cup buttermilk (see substitutes)
No buttermilk? just add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice to milk and let stand 5-10 minutes
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (or melted butter)
1 cup spelt flour
5 tablespoons ground flaxseed (optional/see substitutes)
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon butter
In a medium bowl, combine buttermilk, egg, and oil.
In another bowl, mix together spelt flour, ground flax, sugar, salt and baking powder. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet buttermilk-mixture. Stir until lightly mixed.
Heat a griddle or large frying pan to medium-hot. Add 1 tablespoon of butter. Form 4 inch pancakes out of the batter. Once bubbles form on the top of the pancakes, flip them over, and cook them on the other side for about 3 minutes. Continue until all the batter has been made into pancakes.
Soy milk or yogurt can be substitutes for the buttermilk.
Wheat germ, almond meal, or ground teff can be substituted for the ground flaxseed in the spelt flour recipes.
Spelt Pizza Dough
Spelt Flour Recipes : Pizza
Ingredients (Serves 8-10)
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 1/2 cups warm water (110F, just barely hot to the touch)
4 1/2 cups spelt flour
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 cup pizza sauce
4 ounces mozzarella cheese, diced
10 basil leaves, torn into small pieces
In a large bowl combine yeast and warm water and let proof about 5-10 minutes, until foamy.
Using a wooden spoon, mix-in flour, 1 cup at a time, to yeast mixture until everything is well mixed.
Lightly flour a surface and knead dough on prepared surface 8-10 minutes.
Lightly oil large bowl. Place dough in prepared bowl, cover, and allow to rise in a dry, warm place until doubled (about 90 minutes).
Preheat oven to 500 degrees F and lightly grease a large pizza pan.
Once the dough has doubled, punch it down and knead in olive oil and salt. Allow dough to rest for 5 minutes.
Roll dough out and place on pizza pan. Crimp edges to leave a small lip.
Spread sauce over pizza leaving a 1/2 inch space at the edges. Top with mozzarella.
Bake for about 8 minutes or until cheese is bubbly.
Remove pizza from oven. Brush the exposed crust with a little olive oil to maintain moistness, and sprinkle fresh basil over the top.
Spelt Cake with Apples
Ingredients (Serves 12)
5 apples, cored and peeled
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon white sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup orange juice
1 1/2 cups spelt flour
1 1/2 teaspoons ground flaxseed (or guar gum)(both are optional)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and lightly grease a 9 inch cake (bundt) pan.
Place apples, cinnamon, and 1 tablespoon sugar in a food processor and pulse until you have coarsely and fine chopped pieces.
In a large bowl, using a whisk to mix the eggs. Then whisk in the ½ cup sugar and vanilla until everything is frothy. Stir in the olive oil, juice, flour, flaxseed, baking powder, salt, and 2 teaspoons cinnamon until everything is mixed thoroughly. Fold the apple mixture into the batter. Pour mixture into the prepared baking pan.
Bake for 30 - 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool 15 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Spelt Chocolate Chip Cookies
Ingredients (Makes 24 Spelt Cookies)
1 3/4 cups crunchy peanut butter
1 3/4 cups dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups spelt flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
6 ounces of semi-sweet baking chocolate, coarsely chopped (or 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Place peanut butter in a medium-sized, microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high about 45 seconds or until the peanut butter is melted. Stir once as it heats. Using a spoon, stir in brown sugar and vanilla.
In large bowl, add flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix thoroughly. Add peanut butter mixture and stir until well blended. Stir in the chocolate chips.
Drop dough by 2 tablespoons, 2 inches apart, onto a non-stick cookie sheet. Bake 8 - 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Allow cookies to cool 3 - 5 minutes before removing and placing them on wire racks
Sunday, June 06, 2010
Time, time, time
Make time, give time, take time out
Win time, cost time, the time of your life
Spend time, sell time, the good times and the bad
Kill time, zero time, all the time in the world
Time watch, time travel, time to begin
Time table, time square, can I fit you in
Time frame, time to go, time that you grew up
But tell me...
How do you feel?
I read this poem about Time written by Shaun William Hayes and I thought to myself,she is talking to me. I never have time. I am either wishing time away, like saying I can't wait for the weekend and it isn't even Tuesday yet or I am wishing for more time. I can't tell you how often I had wished there were more hours in a day or more days in a week. I go from one extreme to the other in regards to time. I can't make up my mind if I want more or if I wish the time away.
Today was different. I took "Me Time." I was going to stay home, clean, and catch up on my Friend Feed and/or their blogs. Sorry guys I chose me today and I will catch up during the week with my Friend Feed, etc.
Could not manage to sleep in like I had wanted to so when I woke up early I hit the gym. I had
just finished eating m breakfast and reading the paper and my phone rang. My cousin invited me over to hang out by the pool. It was a really hard decision to make - stay home and clean or relax by the pool.
It was extremely hot today but we had a great breeze. The water felt good when you jumped in. It was a great lazy day. What a great way to destress, get in my vitamin D, and destress. The sun is very relaxing to me. It was great! I know I will get a good night's sleep from being out in the sun and fresh air all day.
Can't wait for next weekend to do it all over again. See there I go again wishing away time.
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