Thursday, May 23, 2013

A Few Things Making Me Happy and One That Isn't

For this episode of "Things I'm Loving" the item right at the top of the list is that I have a road trip planned to Connecticut to see Tom Keifer.  After seeing him in Portland in February I swore that if he came back to New England I was not only going to see him but I was going to splurge to be sure I met him!  Here is the letter explaining how the meet and greet and sound check stuff works and my very cheesy VIP laminate!

I am also loving the quick deals I have been making.  I headed to Shaw's tonight for just a few items and I saved 70%.  I am well stocked on whole wheat pasta and I got four bags of yummy Food Should Taste Good chips.  Throw in a very cheap jar of pickles and a free fruit chew and it was a fun, easy trip!

Since I got my Amazon Prime subscription I have been sucked into the A&E show Storage Wars.  It's a bit scary how much I love, love it! I so want to hang out at an auction with this gang!

Storage Wars

I bought this purse this season and I adore it!  It is roomy enough to hold everything, the fabric is adorable and the flower makes it perfect!

I was in the car yesterday and heard this song.  It's the prettiest, most haunting song I've heard in quite a while.

Alright, here it is:  The one that isn't making me happy.  Last year on Memorial Day weekend I was hanging out in my backyard and it was sunny and HOT.  I guess every year can't have this view:

Friday, May 10, 2013

Miracle Smoothie

I gave up regular juicing a while back because it was far too time consuming for my typical workday morning. I found a recipe for a green smoothie and decided to give smoothies a try.  They were much quicker to throw together and significantly easier to clean up.  So, I began drinking a smoothie each morning and didn't give it much thought.  They were yummy and I enjoyed them but then I had a couple of major ah ha moments.  Here's the smoothie and the recipe I normally use. The pictures are from February when I started doing this. I now make them in a nice blender.  As a result there are no longer any spinach flecks in the finished product.  That that it ever impacted the taste anyway.

Clean Green Smoothie:

  • 1/4-1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1 cup fresh pineapple 
  • 1 frozen banana (I slice a bunch of bananas, freeze them on a cookie sheet and then put in a freezer bag for storage)
  • 1/2 cup frozen fruit (my favorite is mango but peach is also really nice.  They both make a really bright and vibrant green color. You can also use strawberries or raspberries.  The color will be much more muddled but it will taste delicious!)
  • 1 cup fresh spinach (I don't really measure it.  Instead I take a couple good size handfuls and stuff it in the top of the blender)

I was at the doctor recently and she commented that I had lost a significant amount of weight since my physical in October.  I explained that I had not been trying to lose weight and it was super unusual for me to lose any weight without trying.  That coupled with some other not so fun symptoms actually had her quite concerned   It turns out the other symptoms were totally benign.  It hit me one day: what's the one and only change I've made?  Daily smoothies!  I can't prove that it caused me to lose some weight but my hunch is that it certainty played a factor.  

While losing weight is beyond great my other ah ha moment was much more profound and meaningful to me.  I have struggled for years with migraine syndrome that has left me at times incapacitated by severe headaches, fatigue, muscles aches, nausea  and vomiting.  For a while I couldn't even work full-time.  I remember when I started seeing a new doctor I told her how happy I was that my migraines were controlled enough that I could get up, go to work, and do all that needed to be done in my life.  However, she gave me a reality check that the number of headaches I was experiencing was unacceptable and she personally wasn't satisfied even if I was accepting. Over the next few years I made some major changes (vegan diet, drastically reducing diet coke intake) and had really reduced the number of occurrences   I keep a migraine diary and in 2010 and 2011 I was thrilled to "only" be having 35-40 bad days a year.  About three days a month my life my severely disrupted and I could handle that.  With all of my hard work and lifestyle changes 2012 only had 12 of these days.  Well, I happened to glance at my headache tracker recently and noticed that for 2013 there have only been two days.  One day in January and the other early February.  There has been nothing since.  What has changed?  Yup, smoothies!  I honestly believe it.  I did a Google search for "migraine- smoothie" and it seems  I'm not the only believer! .  There is so much to be said for taking accountability for your health.  It's true that I take a pretty powerful pain medication when I need it but by and large I've used food and  overall healthy lifestyle as my drug of choice! 

Friday, May 3, 2013

Standing In My Own Cubicle

Yesterday the lady in my department who does our ergonomics shared some information she had just learned in a meeting.  She said that standing all day can burn around 1,800 calories.  The words weren't out of her mouth before all three of us in our little pod had raised our desks up.  Well, the reality is that you burn a whole ton of calories just sitting so the net difference is nowhere near 1,800 but it is still impressive.  Check out this calculator:


I'm now committed to standing about 6 hours a day at least for the next couple of weeks.  I'm really curious to see if it makes a difference.  By the way, my coworkers are now sitting back down but I'm still standing!