This week was the one I knew we would have to be on our A-game. Two events were planned: Seattle Tattoo Expo and a family wedding. Actually those fell on the same day, which I’m still trying to decide if that was a good thing or a bad thing…
We love to hit up the Tattoo Expo every year, but this time we would definitely have to pass on the kielbasa sausage cart and grabbing a drink or two afterwards. This go round we snacked on Epic Bars, RXBars, PrimalPacs, fresh raspberries, and the always awesome, bacon-wrapped dates instead. Did it keep us on track? yeah… Were we happy about it? not really… We definitely missed the kill-me-now foods and hanging out a favorite bar afterwards, but we soldiered on and spared ourselves a couple of horrible days recovering. I’ll tell you more about how the wedding went a little later…
One cool thing that happened last week was having some friends over for dinner who are getting their Paleo butts back into gear. I changed my mind about 3 times that night on what I was going to make for us. At first I was planning Tex-Mex Casserole, but then realized I never grabbed sweet potatoes so that was out. Then I thought about making Bacon Arugula Burgers, but remembered I needed to use the bacon for later in the week and opted against it. I landed on making meatballs, which was a very good idea indeed.
You can make these with the following:
- 3 pounds ground beef
- 2 eggs
- 1 small onion, finely diced
- 4-5 cloves garlic, well-minced
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 1/2 to 3/4 cup ground pork rinds (I buy this brand)
Mix thoroughly by hand. Form into large balls (I use a 1/3 measuring cup for consistency). Place on parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake for 40 minutes at 400°F.
Week Two Non-Scale Victory(ies)
My non-scale victory for week two is that I stopped thinking about what I felt like eating to satisfy an emotional desire or a craving, and started thinking about what I needed to eat in terms of nutrition. Been a hot minute since this was the norm, if I’m being honest… Emotions, cravings, and the like can still govern our food choices, even when they’re Paleo (or Paleo-ish) foods. (Hello, almond flour cupcakes and chocolate frosting made with avocados!) Since one of the Whole30 values is fostering a healthy psychological relationship with food, this is definitely a win.
This week I dug into other non-scale health focuses: stress reduction, movement, hydration, and spending time with my family more. I have a tendency to push myself to the limit of what a person really should take on in terms of stress. I’m a good multi-tasker and a project manager by profession, so it’s easy for me to take on too much. This was the week of enough is enough.
So I’ve been forcing myself to get off my ass again (ok, ok… I have a friend that’s doing that for me. I needs her.), sleeping as much as I feel I need, and making sure I’m drinking plenty of water. I’m putting down the computer and the phone and the to-do list and… and spending time with my family more than I have in months past. It’s a good, good thing.
The high of the week
You know how when you have debates with your reluctant significant other about the ways that a Paleo template can shore up some of the common issues that come with adulthood? I got to win several of those this week. The Mister is having huge breakthroughs with acid reflux, fogginess, and nagging pains and other issues associated with rampant inflammation. Like so many, he was skeptical that food could have an impact on seemingly non-diet type ailments. Now he can’t help but share with people how great he’s feeling! He still deals with headaches, but overall, the guy is doing great. And I gotta say, it feels good to be right.
My other high of the week was discovering the Salt & Pepper Burgers from Whole Foods Market. We had a many a good meal thanks to those things…
Want to make that broccoli? Here’s what you need:
– 1 pound broccoli florets
– 2 cloves garlic, finely sliced
– 2 tablespoons ghee or butter
– pinch of red chile flakes
– squeeze of fresh lemon juice
– sprinkling of fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley
– sea salt and black pepper to taste
Heat a skillet to medium temperature and melt the ghee. Add the broccoli and pan-roast by dropping it in the ghee and letting it be for about a minute or two. Then mix it up and let it sit again. The brown roasted bits happen when you let it hang undisturbed… otherwise it’s more of a saute / stir-fry situation. After tossing the second time, sprinkle the sliced garlic and red chile flakes into the pan. Mix again after about a minute so the garlic can warm, but don’t let it brown. Brown garlic = bitter garlic. No bueno. Just before serving, sprinkle over the salt, pepper, fresh parsley and squeeze of lemon juice to taste. You’ll know because the broccoli has a little color but is like an al-dente piece of pasta.
The low of the week
There were some real doozies this week… Dinners were pretty good, but lunches and snacks were a struggle. I didn’t even take pictures of the meals cause it was such a train wreck of weirdness. Unfortunately this week the low point for us food-wise was a real high point for us life-wise. We got to attend a much anticipated family wedding on day 13 of our Whole30 and the groom’s Samoan grandmother and father were cooking much of the food. Man, did we want to eat! Thankfully we were able to load up on the pulled pork, the whole roasted pig, the tri-tip (PERFECTLY cooked), and the insanely delicious brisket. That’s right folks, four different meat preparations. These people don’t play around. However, we were desperate for a little veggie action. And sauce. And champagne.
When we crossed the two week mark, we decided to whoop it up a little bit in the food department. Due to my huge slack-fest, it was a morale booster to head to our favorite restaurant for a great breakfast. Breakfast was Eggs Benedict over Roasted Rosemary Potatoes that the restaurant cooked in butter instead of canola oil for us. We also had their breakfast salad with balsamic vinegar and cashews. We love this place.
I didn’t take my own advice this week. I super duper failed to stay ahead of the food game. This happens to me a lot actually: I make a meal plan, I have it all figured out in my head, and then I don’t make it to the store. #fail The end result was a handful of awkward ground beef hashes and way too many eggs. And really weird lunches.
Resources from this week:
- If you live near Tacoma, WA: Art House Cafe
- Epic Bars
- RX Bars
- Or if you’ve got snacks on the brain, be sure to check out the kits (mini, classic, and mega!) from Barefoot Provisions. All Whole30 approved.