Tuesday, February 09, 2010
I wonder how many of us were taught that being 'selfish' was bad? I certainly was! My mother drilled it into my head, along with - tell the truth, be a lady, be nice, treat your elders with respect and NEVER talk back, and ALWAYS be polite! Unfortunately my mom didn't live long enough to teach me what the exceptions to some of the 'rules' were, and how to stand up for myself. So I was the 'good girl', that morphed into a 'polite doormat'!
I never put my needs first, to me that was selfish! But what that behavior did to me over time was - made me feel that everyone else's needs were more important than my own. Webster's defines SELFISH as - taking care of oneself without thought for others. SELFLESS is defined as - not selfish. There should be a word that fits between those two words! That word should mean that we take care of ourselves, but still have regard for others, without being self-sacrificing.
When you put yourself on the bottom of your priority list, over time you become resentful. 'Caregiver' was a role I had since I was a teenager because of illnesses in my family, I felt as if the needs of others were greater than my own. But as the years went by, and that was no longer an issue, I continued that behavior, and didn't put myself first. Taking a stand, setting boundaries, and defining MY needs were things that I simply didn't know how to do - until recently! However, if someone ever said ONE word against my DH, I would jump to his defense in a blink of an eye. I was the same way with my late sister - protective.
There are some people that mistake 'niceness' for weakness, and take advantage. There's that old saying - 'we teach people how to treat us'. For every nasty comment directed my way, that I remained silent for, or was too polite with my response, I taught the other person that it was okay to mistreat me. A few of my friends commented on my 'lessons of life and loss' blog, that in the past I might NOT have stood up to the gossiping group of people from the church, during the memorial service. The 'old' me would have hesitated to jump in, but the 'new' me didn't! I just did it, and it felt GREAT! It was me against 8 older people that were gossiping, but I set them straight, and was still polite. My mom would have been happy! LOL!
Last year, before I turned 50, I felt a shift from within starting. I realized that it's MY life, and my choice. Just because I acted a certain way in the past, does NOT mean that I have to continue that behavior. It's up to ME! I spent years of my life being the 'peace-keeper' with my in-laws, only hurting myself and sacrificing my needs. This past year as I started changing my life, I did get some resistance from so-called friends and in-laws, as I was no longer available to be the 'polite doormat'. TOO bad, they can find something else to wipe their feet on - because it WON"T be me!!!
I've been learning how to stand up for myself, by saying how I feel, while still being myself. I think that my mom would be proud of the changing me! I think the word that I've been looking for is - SELF-RESPECT, which means - proper regard for oneself as a human being! And it feels pretty darn good! Being a little bit selfish isn't a bad thing either, as long as I still have regard for others. Change is a GOOD thing! It's a fresh start and a new beginning!
Sunday, February 07, 2010
Before this week, I didn't REALLY understand the value of blogging. Sure, it's a way to get our thoughts and feelings out, and maybe share something with someone else, but it's more than that. That realization really hit home today for me. Anyone that's read my previous two blogs knows that it's been a difficult week, and that I felt like I was going to explode. Writing about my feelings and posting my blogs helped me feel better. Like I finally could take a breath and let go.
On Wednesday, my DH and I set boundaries with my MIL. I told her flat out - you're suffocating me and I can't put up with 7 phone calls a day. She promised to only call once a day, and that "I" needed to have MORE patience with her. Yeah, right!!! I told her that I've had more patience than most people, but I'm done. She played the 'I'm old. alone. and helpless' card, and said that she would call once a day to check in - so that we would know that she's 'not dead on the floor'! She did NOT keep her word - what a shocker. By 9:30 last night, she called here 5 times! No, I did not take all of the calls, I let the answering machine do it's thing. So much for boundaries!
I felt drained, frustrated, angry, and quite frankly - miserable! The last call last night Hubby took, and she started to stir up crap regarding my SIL. We were trying to watch a movie and unwind when she called. He let her know that his patience for her crap was GONE, and that he's NOT interested in her gossip and the fact that she's trying to cause trouble between us and her daughter. In a firm tone he told her that he's heard enough, and that he's done. He got off of the phone and tossed it onto the coffee table, visably aggravated. Instead of enjoying the movie, I felt like I wanted to scream, and I must have LOOKED that way too! He asked if I was alright, and I wasn't! I could actually FEEL my blood pressure and told him that I was afraid that dealing with her was going to shorten my life! As soon as I spoke those words, I knew that I reached a cross-roads!
I think that my words, which still hung in the air, frightened him. He's going to have a VERY firm talk with her, and tell her that if her behavior doesn't change, he's blocking her number. He and I both know that she won't change, but it's the LAST step before blocking her. We've talked about moving, but WHY should we?? This is our home! We moved from Jersey to get away from HER, and she followed us to Florida! I cut her out before, but she wormed her way back in using the poor health card. Me being the sap that I am, I allowed it!
When I say I'm DONE, I'm not kidding! The thought that my health could suffer from this stress is one heck of an eye-opener! I went back and re-read my previous blog about 'lessons of life & loss', as well as blogs from a bunch of my friends today. I didn't expect it to have the impact it did! I felt like someone took off my blinders and I saw things with clarity! Whether it was one word or phrase, I was able to take something from what you all wrote. I don't know if any of you thought that when you posted your blogs, that you could actually be helping someone - but you ALL did!!! Each of you said something that I could relate to.
My feelings of suffocating are GONE today, and I decided that I won't waste another precious moment of my life dealing with such crap! I also won't put my health at risk for anything, or anyone! I'm tired of hearing myself vent over that witch, and I don't want to waste my energy with such toxic waste! I deserve better! So, the value of blogging is twofold! First it helps you get out your thoughts and feelings, so that they don't fester inside. And second, what you share can do good and really help someone else! After reading Kim's blog, where she mentioned Patti LaBelle, I thought about one of my favorite songs, of hers - 'New Attitude'. My DH printed out the lyrics from that song and I have the words stuck in my head. This is what I keep hearing:
I'm feelin' good from my head to my shoes
Know where I'm goin' and I know what to do
I tidied up my point of view
I got a new attitude
Runnin' hot, runnin' cold
I was runnin' into overload
It was extreme
I took it so high, so low
So low, there was nowhere to go
Like a dream
Somehow the wires uncrossed, the tables were turned
Never knew I had such a lesson to learn
I'm in control, my worries are few
'Cause I've got love like I never knew
I got a new attitude....
What I get from this song, is a woman that now feels powerful and knows who she is. This is what I'm working on! A new day - a new attitude!
Thursday, February 04, 2010
The past 6 days have been challenging, to say the least. I think that people show their 'true colors' when life throws you a curve ball. I see it as character. This is really a follow-up to my last blog. The other day I felt so much stress, that I thought that I would explode! I was going to write in my journal and try to let it go, but instead I wrote my blog. I hesitated in posting it because I was venting SO many feelings, and I felt very exposed, but I posted it anyway. The strange thing was, that soon after, I started to feel relief. Reading your comments helped calm me, and I thank you!!
Yesterday was the memorial service for my MIL's companion, Bob. It was a lovely service, followed by a luncheon at the church. Bob's faith and his relationship with his son were THE most important things in his life, without a doubt! The next holiday at our house will be Easter, and he will be missed! He had a HUGE sweet tooth, and would come here on various holidays, looking for the desserts - before dinner. He knew that I always made baklava on Easter, and I can still see him sneaking a piece, as soon as he got here. When I had my baking business, and tested recipes, I ALWAYS kept the goodies for Bob. He was like a little kid on Christmas morning when I would hand him the bags of treats from my freezer - his face lit up! Memories like this make my heart smile!
The other night, the pastor asked my MIL for a picture of Bob.,.she gave him a photo of herself with Bob. This infuriated my husband, as she is always trying to make herself the center of attention. He felt that the service was about Bob, NOT her. I asked the pastor about us sending photos to the church, that could be used for a slide show. He welcomed the idea. My DH and I spent hours going over pictures of Bob from years of holidays spent together. We tried to include his son and his friends as well. I'm so glad that we did, because we could hear people commenting on what great pictures they were of Bob. It enhanced the service. I also called the church to offer my help, and offered to make desserts. I spent the previous day baking his favorites, feeling like it was the last thing I could do for him. I asked my MIL what she was going to contribute...her answer - nothing! She said "let the other people bring the food". She came empty handed, and didn't even order flowers! USER!!
When something like this happens SO suddenly, there are lessons to be learned! Here are some of my thoughts:
MAKE YOUR HEALTH A PRIORITY!
Bob was having chest pains for the last 6 months, but ignored it. He was in denial about his worsening pulmonary and cardiac conditions, and it cost him his life.
IF YOU'RE NOT HAPPY WITH SOMETHING IN YOUR LIFE - CHANGE IT!
My DH and I couldn't help but notice how unhappy Bob was with my MIL, but stayed because he needed the money. He spent the last 9.5 years of his life literally waiting on her hand and foot, without ONE kind word, or thank you in return! Don't waste your precious life in an unhappy situation.
DON'T GIVE UP YOUR DREAMS!
If there's something that you really want to do in your life - DO IT! I can remember a conversation with Bob and my MIL from 2 years ago. He said that he always wanted to see Las Vegas. She could certainly afford it, but said no, so he didn't go. I remember telling her that if something ever happened to him, and this was one of his life's dreams, that she would regret it. She still refused - and Bob never saw Vegas, and she had NO regret!
IT'S THE LITTLE THINGS IN LIFE THAT MATTER MOST!
I know for a fact, that Bob and his son cherished their Sunday afternoons together, watching football. I'm glad that his son has those memories of his dad. My MIL, however, resented his son, and the time he spent alone with him, and would call him constantly while they tried to watch the game. His son told me that they would shut off the phone because they couldn't stand her calling when they were trying to enjoy their time together.
LET PEOPLE KNOW WHAT THEY MEAN TO YOU!
Bob's son knew that he was THE light of his dad's life. My DH and I know what we mean to each other, but I thought about the other important people in our lives. Our extended family is our closest friends, and we all consider each other 'family'. They know how important they are to us, but they also need to HEAR it! I told them both the other day, how grateful I am to have them in my life and that I love them.
PEOPLE ARE MORE IMPORTANT THAN THINGS OR MONEY!
No one at the end of their life will ever think 'I wish I had more stuff or money'. Love is THE most important thing! Bob's son told my MIL the other day, that she should try to fix her relationships, especially with my DH and myself, because she's going to die alone - with her bank statement! Instead of taking his words to heart, it made her angry. She called me, demanding to know what he was talking about and what 'I' said to him. I had no idea that he talked to her about that, and I had NO part in it. I thought that it was a pretty profound piece of advice he gave her - she didn't. You either get it or you don't!
GIVE OF YOURSELF - BE A GIVER, NOT A TAKER!
It can be as simple as hug, when someone needs it most, or a kind word. Yesterday I saw many 'givers', as people brought in food and flowers, or showed their feelings for Bob. SHE however, offered NOTHING! She did stay until we were the last people there, despite our wanting to leave, and she made sure that SHE took home the flowers, and ALL of the food that was left!! It was literally a box full of food, when she didn't even bring a crumb! She even had the nerve to COMPLAIN about the food later, that she didn't care for it!!!! TAKER!
SPEAK UP WHEN YOU WITNESS AN INJUSTICE!
I overheard a group of 8 people repeating poisonous comments that my MIL made about Bob's son, as if they were the truth. Without a second thought, I approached them and spoke the TRUTH! I told them that Bob's son is NOT a bad person, that you can't believe the gossip that SHE spreads, that he and his dad had a wonderful relationship, that I 'chose' to not judge him, but show him compassion! They were silent at first, and I wasn't sure what would happen next, but I was PROUD of myself for opening my big mouth! They started telling me all of the BAD things that SHE said, and how it spread through out the church. To be honest, I was surprised and a bit disappointed that a group from church didn't give him the benefit of the doubt, but believed gossip! I told them that I was at the emergency room and held his son while he cried. They looked shocked, because they were told that his son didn't even care. I hope that I helped them see his son in a different light.
WORDS HAVE POWER!
Beware of gossip and those that thrive on it! It's VERBAL POISON! A cruel or untruthful word can cause SO much harm, and spread like wild-fire. But, a kind word can do SO much good!
DON'T BE A DOORMAT!
This is one that I've been working on. In the past I was a polite doormat- but NO more! Don't let yourself be manipulated into doing things that you don't want to do. This was a lesson that hit me in the face 8:30 yesterday morning, and I'm THRILLED to say that I passed with flying colors!!!!!! My MIL called to ask me "to intercede with Bob's son and ask him WHEN he's going to repay her the 2+ thousand dollars that Bob owed her"! YEP, you read correctly! The morning of his funeral, this was the first thing out of her mouth. She does NOT need the money!!!! I was SO shocked by her disgusting behavior, but pulled myself together...and said NO, I'm NOT doing that! She got nasty, which only made me get my back up. AS she pushed, I told her flat out that I couldn't believe what she wanted ME to do, and that he TOLD her that he would repay her, and that I want NO part in it! SHE yelled at me on the phone and got REALLY nasty. I didn't take it! YAY, no more doormat! Tacky bitch!
DON'T EXPECT WARMTH AND KINDNESS FROM A RATTLESNAKE!
After all, it's - or should I say SHE, is a cold-blooded reptile! Don't expect people to be something they aren't - in this case - human! The only one you can change is yourself!
DON'T TAKE CRAP!
Another one for me! But, I'm doing okay! Speak the truth and set boundaries, otherwise you have no one to blame but yourself! SHE started on me as soon as we picked her up for the service, but my husband and I IMMEDIATELY shut her up by letting her know, we're DONE with her crap! Yes, it was one tense ride to the church, but I didn't care. DONE, DONE, DONE!!!
DON'T BELIEVE ANYTHING THAT A DELUSIONAL LIAR SAYS!
Do you know that saying - when someone shows you WHO they are - believe them the first time??? My MIL actually told us that 'NO one liked Bob, that they only tolerated him because they LOVE her'. She didn't expect much of a turn out for his service. Well, there were at least 90 people there to celebrate his life! Both my DH and I noticed that some people were giving her odd looks. Everyone spoke highly of him, but NOT even half of the people approached her! Many didn't even speak to her.
DON'T EXPECT WATER FROM A DRY WELL!
People can only GIVE what they have. If they're honest, expect the truth. If they're kind, expect compassion. I stopped expecting even ONE kind word from her! She didn't even introduce us to ANYONE!!! Both my hubby and I mingled and introduced ourselves, only to be SHOCKED, REPEATEDLY - that NO one knew SHE had a son or daughter-in-law! I heard how they ALL knew about her daughter, but she never mentioned having a son!!! Evil witch!!! It still 'stung' to hear this over and over again, because it had to hurt my husband. Both my friend Helen, who came to the service, and myself, overheard people telling her 'what a sweet DIL you have'. Her reply.... SILENCE! Instead of being hurt, I now chuckle, because SHE's one dried-up well, with nothing to give!
NEVER SACRIFICE YOUR VALUES TO PLEASE SOMEONE ELSE!
I won't get into details here, but over the years I've seen Bob 'loosen' his values a bit. Don't let yourself be pushed into doing things that you KNOW aren't right for you.
DON'T PUT YOUR NEEDS ON THE BACK BURNER!
By Friday night I knew that it would be a rough few days. I ate a small bowl of granola and almond milk for dinner at 10:30 PM! I knew that I wouldn't have the time or energy to Spark. So I made a decision to get through the service, stick to my food plan the best I could, and get back on here on Thursday. Instead of being side-tracked like I would have in the past, I took a few days to do what needed to be done, THEN put myself back on the FRONT burner.
I'm by no means perfect, but I do have a very strong sense of right and wrong. I am a work in progress, as my friend Yvonne says on her page. I try to do my best on any given day, and do no harm. I'm working on making myself a priority, and I'm thankful that I was aware enough to 'see' the lessons that Bob's passing brought to light. I will do my best to learn them all and put them into practice! Thanks Bob, you will be missed!
Tuesday, February 02, 2010
The last few days have been very sad and extremely stressful. Friday, late in the afternoon while I was starting dinner, I got a phone call that caught me off guard. My MIL's companion of 9.5 years was being rushed to the hospital without a pulse or a heartbeat. I shut the stove off, changed my clothes, and rushed out of the door. By the time I got to the hospital, he had passed away. His name was Bob and he was a part of our extended family. His son moved down here from Ohio a few months ago, and without a doubt was THE light of his father's life!
Bob was my MIL's paid companion/male friend. They had a very strange relationship that was based on mutual need. There was no love, and sometimes they didn't seem to even like each other. She wanted him to cater to her, be her companion, and keep her company. He needed the money and the companionship. He would come over every day around noon and fix lunch, hang out all day, and go home after dinner. He spent holidays at our house, and my DH and I liked him. She is NOT handicapped in any way, but THE laziest woman I've EVER met. She does have some health issues, but nothing that would stop her from doing things for herself - she just chooses NOT to!
When I arrived at the hospital, I was greeted by Bob's son. When he told me what happened, he started to cry, and I hugged him. He took me back to where his dad was, and I was totally shocked by how bad he looked - his face was purple. My MIL was in the room, in FULL drama-mode, ACTING like she was crying - without shedding ONE tear!!! I actually walked around her so that I could see her eyes, which were DRY. Not a big surprise, since she complained about the man EVERY day!!! What bothered me the most was her total lack of compassion for his son and DIL. She didn't offer one shred of support or kindness to them, she didn't even get off of her @ss to give either of them a hug!! When Bob's DIL came into the room, I went over to her and offered my support. She sobbed as I held her. My MIL did...NOTHING!
Bob's son took me to the side and told me that he had to get out of there because he was "going to ring my MIL's neck". Bob was having difficulty breathing while at my MIL's house, but instead of calling 911, she called his son-who was at the beach with his wife! He told her to call 911 and that they would rush to the hospital. She waited to call...until he collapsed on his face on her floor! Yes, that's what I said! She WAITED!!!
My MIL's friend drove her home from the hospital, and she wanted me to come back to her house. I went home first to put the food, that was still on the stove away, and wait for my hubby, who was on his way. When we got to her house, some of her friends were there, and she looked and acted like she was having a party. She had nothing to put out for people, so my DH and I went to the store to pick up some food. When we got back, 2 pastors from the church were there, and she sat there with a smile on her face like she was the queen. She actually joked around saying "now that Bob's dead, who am I going to complain about"? She proceeded to say negative comments about Bob's son in front of all of these people from church. It got REALLY uncomfortable, as she verbally bashed his son, and I could NOT keep my big mouth shut. I told her that she really shouldn't be talking about his son like that, and that I felt like she should stop judging him, and show the man some compassion! There was silence as she glared at me.
The next morning she called Bob's son and told him that she wanted a ring back that she gave him. When he arrived at her house, with the ring, before EVEN saying hello, she asked about repayment of money that she lent to Bob. The poor man wasn't even gone 24 hours, and that's ALL she cared about. She does NOT need the money!! So now she's acting like 'Helpless Hanna' and wants everyone to cater to her. My husband tried talking to her about going into an assisted living facility, since she doesn't want to be alone, and doesn't do anything for herself. She's NOT interested! He also told her to hire a REAL caregiver/companion to come in to help her - NOT interested! He told her that it's not fair to us, or her friends-to be at her beck and call. I said - nothing! Yet, the next day my SIL called, saying how her mother told her that "I" want her to go into a facility. ME??? Why do I get blamed when I didn't even say anything?
So, she's calling here up to EIGHT times a day!!!!! She wanted me to come over - and are you ready???? ...put the bedspread on her bed FOR HER!! Oh, but first HER SHEETS need to be changed! Yeah, like that's going to happen! I went to get my hair cut this morning, and by the time I got back home - she called THREE times! When she called back, yet again - I did answer. The FIRST words out of her mouth were "where were you"? Uh, pardon me???? I guess I didn't get the memo that stated that SHE was my keeper!
Bob's service is tomorrow morning and the only way to describe her behavior about his passing and the way she treated his family is-- DISGUSTING! I've done my best in the past to keep her at arms length, to avoid her toxic behavior. Then my SIL is calling me, telling me that my MIL shouldn't be alone and WHY is she driving herself to a dentist's appointment? My reply was that she's more than capable of driving herself! And as for the 'alone' part, maybe my SIL should get her botoxed- face with her silicone- inflated boobs on a plane and keep her evil witch mother company! Two raptors!
I can't allow myself to get sucked into dealing with her! I feel like I lost my nice little arms-length of distance, and now she's in my face. The 5th call from her today, on my answering machine, she's trying to line me up to take her to numerous doctor's appointments in March. She's actually using 'the lump in her breast' tactic that she used on me in the past. I kid you NOT! Last year she did the same thing-claimed that she had a lump in her breast so that I would take her to the doctor. It worked, and I took her. I went in the exam room with her, waiting for her to tell the doc about the lump - she NEVER did! I did!!! I said in front of the doc, what about that lump? That witch said "what lump"? I reminded her what she told me before I agreed to take her, and she replied "well, I guess it went away". So she's trying that one again. I feel stressed to the max and don't know how to handle this.
I feel sad for Bob, and such compassion for his son and DIL, but revolted by my MIL!! I feel like I'm suffocating from her constant neediness and drama. As of 2 minutes ago, she's called here SIX times so far today, despite the fact that she KNEW I spent the afternoon making desserts for Bob's memorial service. I've been having a hard time sleeping the last few nights and feel like the stress is choking me. I will NOT let myself be pulled back into a toxic situation with her, as she'll suck the joy and life right out of me! I've worked so hard on myself the last few months, and I won't un-do all of the progress I've made!! My DH wants to lay down the law with her - yet AGAIN! Any ideas would be GREATLY appreciated!
Thursday, January 21, 2010
This morning before I went out for my bike ride, I took a container of cooked, steel cut oats out of the fridge, to have for breakfast when I came home. I warmed it up, added a banana and some almond milk, and was good to go. This made me think about all of the little things that I do, that make this journey easier. My DH teases me about being a 'list maker', but it's a habit I got into years ago to help keep myself organized. It's one of my quirks, but it works for me! I never leave the house to go shopping without my steno tablet - I would be lost without it. I can't stand having a bunch of notes on loose pieces of paper, I would rather have it all in one place - my trusty tablet.
I really appreciated all of the helpful ideas that you all gave me in yesterday's Meatball blog. So I thought that if you guys could pass on new ideas to me, maybe I could return the favor. I love learning new stuff! Up until 2 years ago, I had a small wholesale baking business. I quickly learned the value of being organized and a well stocked freezer. I realized that if I wasted ingredients or my time, that it threw off my bottom line. I took what I learned in my business and let it spill over into how I ran our house. Below are some of the things I do to save time and money.
I soak steel cut oats in water, in a container in the fridge overnight, which cuts down on cooking time. I ALWAYS make twice the amount needed, and portion it into glass Pyrex containers with snap on lids, pop it into the fridge for breakfast the next day.
Despite the fact that we live in Florida and MUST keep a case of bottled water on hand during hurricane season, I stopped buying it for every day use. I use a Brita pitcher and filter the water and fill our own bottles. Saves the landfill too!
I keep cut up veggies in containers on hand for snacking. I also buy the big bags of organic baby-cut carrots at Sam's Club, the price is fair and they're ready to go.
I always have Cedar's brand Tzatziki in the fridge to put on top of potatoes, mixed in with mayo in tuna or chicken salad, but mostly to dip my veggies into. Tzatziki is a strained yogurt dip with garlic, cucumber, and dill. I buy it at either BJ's Wholesale Club or Sam's Club in a 24 oz container for $4.88. And the best part - 2 tablespoons is only 35 CALORIES! You can make your own, and there are even recipes for it on Spark.
I have a problem with milk, and can only tolerate up to about 6 tablespoons a day in my coffee. I also can't eat regular yogurt, but I CAN eat strained yogurt with the whey removed. Instead of buying Greek yogurt, I strain my own. I buy large containers of plain non-fat yogurt, and dump it into a colander that I lined with a paper coffee filter. I then put the colander into a bowl to catch the liquid that drains off, and put the whole assembly into the fridge for a couple of hours. I put the strained yogurt back into it's original container and keep it on hand in the fridge. The longer you let it drain, the thicker it will become, and it's a heck of a lot cheaper than buying Greek yogurt.
When I make my lunch today, I'll also make hubby's lunch for tomorrow. It saves time in the morning and ensures that he has something healthy - as long as he stays away from the pizza, wings, and other crap food people bring in and scarf down!
Portioning food has become a valuable tool for me. I'll wash a large container of grapes, and portion them into 1 cup plastic containers, and stack them in the fridge. This way they're ready for hubby's lunch or a snack - and I know the amount that I'm eating.
I'll buy the family size packages of chicken breasts, and roast them ALL on a large sheet pan. When they're cool enough to handle, I'll remove the skin and bones, slice or shred the meat, and put it into freezer containers. When I need cooked chicken for a recipe, chicken salad, or to put on top of a salad - it's ready.
When I make chicken for dinner, I always make twice the amount - I LOVE leftovers! Last night I made lemon garlic chicken with artichokes, and tonight we're having the leftover chicken for dinner. I also do the same thing when I make brown rice. I'll cook 2-3 times what I need, portion it into containers, and put it into the fridge or freezer. So dinner tonight is a snap because the chicken and rice are already done. Tonight I'm going to broil some portabella mushrooms with balsamic dressing, and I'll make extra, and morph the leftover mushrooms into dinner tomorrow.
When I make soup or marinara sauce, I always make extra, and put it into containers and pop it in the freezer, for those nights you want something easy.
I make roasted veggies often, and I put the leftovers into small containers in the freezer. I'll use them in an omelet or wrapped in tortillas with some chicken or beans.
When I make meatballs, I bake them on a sheet pan covered with heavy duty foil that I sprayed with cooking spray. Clean up is a breeze. I put the cooled meatballs into freezer bags and pop them into the freezer. They don't stick together, and you can just pull out what you need.
Since Florida can be the bug capital of the world, and the thought of it alone grosses me out, I keep all of my grains in sealed containers in the pantry or fridge. I bought a bunch of cheap measuring cups, and have a measuring cup in each container of oats, rice, couscous, etc. This way there's NO excuse for portion distortion! (Thanks Anita-love that term)
If anyone can take away 1 new idea from this blog, that makes things easier for them, or saves time and/or money - great! I think that these little things add up and make my life easier, but the MOST important part - it helps me stay on track!
Get An Email Alert Each Time WINGSOFCHANGE Posts