Sunday, April 11, 2010

What's on the menu?

Happy spring!

We've been doing pretty well lately with menu planning. The planning part, anyway, if not the execution ;-) My primary goal has been to eat more fresh food. More fruit, veggies, salad, etc. And organics where possible. I'm also trying to eat seasonally and really focus on recipes that bring together a lot of nutrients. To make that a reality, I've been working with a couple of new strategies. Are you guys familiar with the YOU doctors (Dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen)? I've enjoyed their books, and one thing in particular has stuck with me. Maybe because it goes against my usual thought process, but I've found it really does work:

"Automate" one meal per day. They say that, particularly if you're trying to lose weight, actually removing some choices and decisions (like what to eat for lunch every day) can make things easier. Eat that same meal (with some minor tweaks) every day. They say its fine from a nutritional standpoint, and for me, once I got past the concern over lack of variety, this has worked wonders, both for my wallet and helping me eliminate lots of fast food drive-by lunchtime disasters.

They say it can be any meal you choose, but for me the hardest one is always lunch. I'm also trying to eliminate all processed foods, so I've been making turkey and guacamole pitas for lunch every day. Some days I also take a salad (with homemade dressing). This setup is surprisingly enjoyable five days a week, and I feel good about my lunch choices again. I also get an extra serving of veggies in by lunch time if I eat the salad, so I'm working on that (even though I'm not really a salad lover). I'm all about the salad toppings and dressing rather than the greens, so I change those up each week. Baby steps!

Hubby and I are also working out at least 5 days a week, which makes dinner a bit of a challenge (I get home at 6:30, then work out). So we're learning what works and what doesn't, and the whole freezer meal thing has been a Godsend. It's about time for another day of freezer meal prep, so I will share some favorite freezer recipes you guys might enjoy as well!

Here's the plan for the week:

Sunday: Grilled salmon with chimichurri, Italian potato salad, sauteed asparagus. Also, make a batch of Sausage, Bean and Kale ragout (this is great for switching up lunch during the week, and a quick dinner with garlic toast or cheese muffins)

Monday: A new one to try - Cider vinegar chicken, smashed potatoes, cucumber and watercress salad

Tuesday: Leftovers or freezer pleasers!

Wednesday: Whitefish with artichokes, salad, cheesy olive bread

Thursday: Chicken raguout, noodles (tossed with any leftover chimichurri), garlic butter green beans

Friday: Grilled Balsamic BBQ chicken, corn with lime butter, and sweet potatoes

Saturday: Burgers, roasted rosemary potatoes, lemon butter broccoli

So, what's on your table this week?

Love, Dahrlin'

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Thought for the Day...

So, I was doing my Bible study this morning and came across this:

"A wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands, the foolish one tears hers down." Proverbs 14:1 (NIV)

Wow. So much to think about packed into such a small line of text!

Recently, as I mentioned in this post, my mind has been on my priorities and behaviors, and what changes I may need to make to them. I know that we all have the same 24 hours each day, and I just haven't felt like I've been maximizing my time and putting it toward the right things lately. Often it feels like I let the "tyrrany of the urgent" dictate what I do and when, with everything else (planned or not) seeming to fall by the wayside. We've been making some changes around the house over the last year or so to work on that, and with more energy over the last few months, but it's slow going sometimes :-)

So how about you guys? What thoughts do you have on the verse above? What changes, if any, have you made recently that you feel good about?

Love, Dahrlin'

Thursday, April 1, 2010

New Organizational Tool #1

First, a huge thanks to ALL who shared thoughts, publicly and backchannel, encouraging and praying and sending virtual hugs after my mini-meltdown a couple weeks ago!

While I'm working on sorting out the mess over here, I recently found this amazing site, which is helping me immensely with conquering my Sticky Note Syndrome. (This is the one where, if you're at all like me, you have piles of sticky notes and shreds of paper reminding you to do things that you really intend to do, just as soon as you locate the relevant sticky note, which is item #1 on the list of things to do that you also can't find...and which notes eventually become one more thing to sort out!) The program is called Evernote, and there is an app for the iPhone or iPod Touch if you've got those. If you don't, the website is totally free and it ROCKS. Check it out! You won't be sorry!

Love, Dahrlin'
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