hamming it up

I don’t know what I’m doing here anymore. I pretty much just do bullet posts and photo posts and I’m boring myself. I can’t even imagine how bored you must be. Anyway! Today is Friday so that means bullets. You’re so welcome.

I’m curious, what do you do for Christmas dinner? Do you go all out like Thanksgiving or do you go the simple route with take-out? We have lasagna because it’s one of the few meals Damon likes to make so I get to do absolutely nothing!

my colon hates me

WARNING WARNING This is going to be one of THOSE posts. The squeamish should run away now while you can!

I think you all know I have IBS. No rhyme or reason, no cause, just effect. You know never know when it will hit you, what food will do you in, or where you will be when it strikes.

My digestive system is just ridiculous. You know, you never hear anyone say that they love their intestines. You know why? Because if they work well you take them for granted! You only hear from those of us who hate our guts. And whose guts hate them back.

When my gallbladder up and quit on me I thought my “issues” would get better. And they did! I could eat salad again! Seriously though, a piece of freaking lettuce used to send me running for the loo. I don’t have to play I-Spy a restroom every time I walk into an unfamiliar building anymore. It’s soooo much better. Except when it’s not.

When you have your gallbladder removed, all of a sudden you have no bile regulation. Your liver continues to spurt that acid out on a regular basis, but without the gallbladder there to send it on only when you need it, the bile just goes straight to your stomach and sits there waiting for food. When you sleep at night or otherwise fast for a time the acid really builds up. Stomach acid + say, an egg in the morning? Well, they don’t play well together. I’ve learned simple coping things, lots of whole grains/high fiber, especially in the mornings, make a huge difference.

The problem is, I have other triggers, hidden triggers. I’m still finding them 3 years post surgery. There are the obvious ones, fried foods, high fat foods, high sugar foods, and too many raw vegetables.

Then there are the less obvious. The most recent discovery? Splenda.



It’s really hard to try to lose weight when you can’t have any artificial sweeteners. Nutrasweet (aka aspartame) gives me migraines and now Splenda (aka sucralose) gives me diarrhea. Massive cramping, leave you on the floor in a fetal position, diarrhea. Awesome.

I’m going to drink some stupid plain water now. Humph.


ode to veggies

Oh veggies, how I love thee, let me count the ways…

Um. Hmmm.

Not so much.

I have confession. I don’t really like vegetables.
~squeals and ducks~

I know. I know! I know I should but I just don’t. Ugh.

Don’t get me wrong. I eat them. I just don’t LIKE them. I usually put them in soup or otherwise cook them to death so I don’t have to taste them. Or you know, slather them in butter or other such bad things. Cheese…salad dressing…sour cream… ~ducks again~

Give me recipes please. Ones that will make me like them. HALP.

and then there was cake

Josh’s party was completely awesome. We had gorgeous weather, and fabulous guests. 🙂 We didn’t run out of goodie bags, but it was darn close! I have never had that many people in my house, but it was so much fun!

I spent all day Friday baking and prepping. All day.

I hope I never have to make a Lego cake again. But it was worth it just this once:

The knobs are half a marshmallow! Pretty stinking cute if I do say so myself!

Then I added the shortbread minifig cookies:

It looked a little like an army – guarding the cake with their lives!!

I had lots of shortbread dough leftover, so I cut rectangles and then added dots to look like Lego bricks.

Damon said they looked like Legos only in a Picasso kind of way, and someone else called them dominos. ~ahem~ I called them delicious. Phhhtttttt.

apple picking

When I was growing up my family had a mini apple orchard in our backyard. I was spoiled with homemade apple crisp and applesauce throughout every fall. I’m not so lucky to have apple trees in my own yard now, or even enough sunlight to support them if I tried, but we do have lots of orchards in our area.

We went apple picking this morning, and it was a perfect day for it, cool, but sunny. When we got there, we decided to go check out one of the fields a little further away, assuming the close by trees would be fairly well picked over. It was a great decision! I’ve never in my life seen such huge gorgeous apples, nor trees so full of them.

Seriously, every single branch looked just like this one.

The woman working there said it was a bumper crop. Not only did the apples love the rainy weather we had in July, but the owners had brought in extra bees to help pollinate and boy did they ever pollinate! (Did you know there’s been a bee shortage in New England for the last few years?)

Btw, they taste as good as they look too. Those apples were truly glorious.

The scent of fresh cinnamon applesauce is permeating everything in my house right now. I bet if you scratch your screen you can sniff it. 😉 I’m definitely making apple crisp later this week. Who’s coming over with the vanilla ice cream?

week 4 challenge

Water. Water. Everywhere. And I drank it all.

I did the Diet Challenge at Hot by BlogHer this week – to up my water consumption and limit non-water drinks to only 2 per day.

We all know the best thing you can do when you’re trying to lose weight is to drink lots and lots of water. And I did that at the beginning but I’d been slacking lately. This challenge was great because it reminded me that I need to keep doing this – every single day. Forever!

I’d gotten into a habit of drinking flavored waters (the 0 calorie packets that you add to a water bottle) instead of plain water and I think I’m getting too much splenda in my diet. I don’t really like using a lot of artificial stuff but I was starting to rely on it to get something sweet. I definitely cut back on flavored waters – only 1 per day this week. My other non-water drink was one cup of coffee each morning.

I certainly didn’t suffer by limiting non-water drinks so I am going to keep going with it. Thanks for a great challenge Christina. I needed the reminder!


On a side note, I’ve decided I’m going to experiment going wheat free for awhile. Although I don’t have Celiac or a wheat allergy, I do think it’s possible I have an intolerance or low-tolerance for it digestively.

That said, I’m not going to start this week. I’d like to get past my birthday next week first – dang if I’m not going to have cake on my own birthday. But I am going to start cutting back significantly while I research the best way to go about totally eliminating wheat. I don’t eat a lot of bread now, however, I do like tortillas and pastas. I’m going to pick up some brown rice pasta or quinoa pasta but I need to find some kind of substitute for wraps.

Any wheat-free suggestions or advice would be greatly appreciated. I know there is wheat in lots of unexpected foods so I’m going to do some more careful label reading, again.

How are you all doing?

simple egg drop soup

Some days I crave Chinese food in the worst way, especially the soups. Oh, how do I love hot and sour soup and egg drop soup. This is one of those days!

Instead of ordering out I make a simple, quick, and low calorie egg drop soup that is just as satisfying, and better for me, than the restaurant version.

Simple Egg Drop Soup

One cup of water.

One bouillon cube (Preferably low sodium because holy cow do you know one regular bouillon cube is almost half of your daily sodium allowance??!)

1/2 cup to 1 cup fresh bite size spinach – I use baby spinach so I can throw in the stems and all and I don’t have to tear it up.

1 large egg

Microwave the water and bouillon in a large mug 1-2 minutes until it’s boiling and bouillon has dissolved.

Beat one egg with a fork in a separate bowl.

Slowly slide the egg into the water (or equivalent broth) and stir gently. Add in the spinach.

The hot water will cook the egg and wilt the spinach perfectly!

Now enjoy your 84 calorie lunch!

By the way, you can replace the spinach with anything you prefer: diced scallions, julienned Chinese peapods, bean sprouts, cooked carrots, water chestnuts, kale, etc. I just happen to like spinach in my soups and generally have it on hand.

the post that turned into an ad for Trader Joe’s by accident

I think it’s a good day for random bullets!

boring stuff

My first PT was good today, but of course my back didn’t spasm at all while I was there so she didn’t get to see it. Typical. She does think I bruised at least one rib as well as the muscle strain. There’s only one good stretching exercise for this but she did use the ultrasound on the area and it felt good at least for a little while. I’ll be going back twice a week for the next 4 weeks. Oh, what fun.

I am going out this evening for my second of four nutrition classes. I found the first one pretty interesting and I’m looking forward to this one – on cooking green vegetables to make them more palatable – I hope that’s true! She’s supposed to bring a bunch of recipes, we’ll just see if any are good enough to share!

By the way – have any of you been reading mothergoosemouse’s series Cheap calories and couch potatoes? All four posts so far have been very good. It’s just the sort of thing that’s been on my mind lately.

To help me with my goals I’ve been using a site that converts any recipe into calories. Since I make so much of my food from scratch it’s often hard to count calories. This makes it so much easier! I’m sure there’s a bunch of them out there but this one is the easiest that I’ve found so far.

Sorry to bore you with all of this! I’m boring myself silly. Hopefully my life will get interesting again soon. 😉


Let’s take a poll, sort of. I would do a real poll but I seem to be technologically challenged in that area. Meaning – I need to install the polldaddy plugin and sadly my husband has neither done it for me, nor taught me how. ahem.

Anyway, I’d like to know how many of you pay attention to high fructose corn syrup in the foods you buy?

Do you avoid it at all costs?

Do you allow some but not a lot?

Do you forget to check on the label and only discover it after you get home? (or is that just me??)

Do you not believe that it’s any worse than any other sugar so you don’t worry about it?

Has the recent news about possible mercury contamination in HFCS made any difference in your thinking?

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