Thursday, January 24, 2008

Musings of a food junkie.

Some of you know this, but some of you don't. Back in 2002, I joined Weight Watchers. At the time, my 5'4" body (okay, 5'3" and change. shut up) was carrying around 172 pounds. My father had died just months before, and I was in this place where I would constantly ask myself "if I were to die today, would I be happy with the way I spent my life?" The answer was a resounding no. For me, the weight was the easiest thing to tackle first. Over the course of the next nine months, I lost 30 pounds. I'm lucky in that I've managed to keep most of it off over the past 6 or so years.
The problem with losing so much weight is that, for the rest of your life, you're battling with yourself to keep it off. Ingrained habits are hard to break. I got fat for a reason. If I were to let myself, I'd probably get fat again. I am a volume eater. I can pack away a lot of food for someone my size. In all honesty, I think on some level I went vegetarian simply because I could eat more without necessarily gaining weight. I mean, I did go veg for health reasons - far too many people in my family have died of heart attacks for me not to take it seriously. But because I eat a lot of whole foods - grains, fruit, veggies, beans - it allows me to get my quantity without having to worry about the quality. 

The problem is... I've been stressing out lately. Work has been insanely busy, and it's all I can do to keep my head above water, let alone make any dents in my piles. Which is fine, it's better than being bored. Unfortunately, I've been reverting to bad old habits. Diet sodas every day, bags of goldfish 3/4 gone without realizing it, chips, multiple helpings of dinner despite being full, peanut butter sandwiches before bed when I'm not hungry... it's a steep slope I'm teetering on and the slightest breeze is going to put me back where I vowed I'd never be again. Just because I'm bingeing on better quality food does not mean it'll make me any less fat if I eat too much of it.

I know what I need to do to change. I know that there are greater issues at play that are driving me to turn to food as comfort, and that stress is only one part of it. I know I need to reconnect with the things that make me feel better, calmer, more relaxed. I know that the food may be filling a void, but it's the wrong one that's being filled. I know all this. I just need to act on it. 

Somehow, that last bit is always the hardest, isn't it?

Monday, January 21, 2008

Bobo-wha?

Bobo who? Boba Fett?
No no no. Bobotie. That's the curry I made today. It is, apparently, a South African kind of curry. It's certainly different. It kind of tastes like a curry-flavored stuffing (or dressing, if you're from the South). It's really good though, and very filling. Let's see if they'll let me post a picture:











The recipe is from Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker. It's got bread cubes, soy crumbles, apricots and almonds in it. Which would explain why I made apricot and almond scones yesterday. Just trying to use things up before they go bad. I've got a load of almonds going into the freezer, actually, as I won't use them before they get rancid.

Today was a lovely Martin Luther King Day. I lounged over an extra cup of coffee, took a very brisk walk (it was 7 whole degrees outside, but it was sunny!), made the curry, started on a cookbook for my mom and decided to start re-reading Harry Potter #7. All in all, it was a good day. Now, if I could have 5 more of them I'd be all set!

Oh! I got the picture of the jambalaya to post in the, er, post below. Apparently I just needed 24 hour to let it sit and marinate.

Oh oh! Old friends have seem to have been coming out of the woodwork lately! Another friend, this time from college, recently found my Facebook entry. Hey Barb!!!

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Whadda Weekend.

I loves me a long weekend. This is the first time in the history of my working life that I've had Martin Luther King Day off. I plan on enjoying it to the fullest. But that's tomorrow. My actual weekend has been busy. I started off by heading up to my friend Robin's for breakfast. Marie was going to stop by on her way to her nephew's birthday party. I only planned on staying a few hours. 12 hours later I'm still there and helping Robin cook dinner. Who knew? Anyway, we had fun hanging out and cooking. We made this:









We don't know what it is, but it's good. We started out making a soup but ended up with a rich, quinoa-y concoction that just satisfies. I'd post a recipe, but it's going to have to wait until I can come up with something that makes a manageable amount. Seriously, we made enough to feed a small army.

And so we come to today. After brief interlude of convincing my car it could get down to the gas station, I headed off to go grocery shopping. I came back, had lunch and made some scones:










These are almond apricot scones. The recipe is the basic scone recipe from Vegan With a Vengeance, then I just added some dried apricots, apricot jam and some almonds. You'll notice there is one missing. Well, someone had to try them. For the good of mankind, of course.

And then and then! For dinner, I decided to make the Seitanic Red and White Bean Jambalaya in the Veganomicon. Hail Seitan! Seriously, is there anything Isa and Terry can't do?? Here it is:










It's pretty darned good, although a little unweildy if you don't have a stovetop-to-oven pot. I ended up having to split it between two oven-safe casserole dishes. A little messy, but the final product was well worth it.

Tomorrow I'm going to make something in my slow cooker/crock pot, depending on what you want to call it.  Now Kate, you ask. Why are you making so much food if you're going to be the only person eating it? Good question, dear Reader. You see, I make food on the weekend and eat off it all week. The scones are for breakfast, the jambalaya is for lunch and the slow cooker stuff will be for dinner. Or some amalgamation of those combinations. Usually by the time I get home from work during the week, my brain is barely functioning enough to turn on the microwave, let alone tackle something like the Jambalaya. Whatever doesn't get eaten by the end of the week goes into the freezer for those days when nothing gets made and I'm sick of the same old thing. 

Friday, January 18, 2008

Movie review: Cloverfield

Oh. My. Fucking. God. This movie is intensity on a stick.

I'll be the first to admit, I was iffy about this movie. I say that a lot, don't I? Anyway, in watching the trailers, all I saw was a bunch of young, hip kids running around scared. Which is every trailer advertising "horror" movies these days. So, I had my doubts.

This movie is different. It is a monster movie done right. There is no hero. There is no swell of music during a "we can do it!" speech. There is no big battle where we kick ass after getting our asses kicked. There is no rockin' soundtrack you can buy at FYE. There is no music at all in this movie. It is just the characters, trying not to die.

It is, however, jiggly. If hand-held cameras make you queasy (Bourne Identity Syndrome), then you will have issues with this movie. And, like I said, it is intense. Very intense. There is little to break it, aside from one of the characters nervously prattering.

I highly recommend this movie. You should go see it.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

A story for you.

Once upon a time in a land far, far away. There was a princess named Katie. Katie's best friend in the whole wide world was another princess named Becky. They went to school together in seventh grade... and eighth... and so on all the way through high school.
But their junior year in high school, Princess Becky got sick. Very sick. The land was sad to know that one of their princesses was suffering so. Then one day, Princess Becky came back and the world rejoiced! But all was not as it should have been. She was still sick, but the wizards finally found potions (aka drugs) that made it not so bad. So after high school, Princess Katie went to the magic realm of New York City for college and Princess Becky went to the land of Far Far Away (aka Arizona). The magic communication devices (aka email) broke down and they lost touch.

Then one magical day, Princess Becky emailed Princess Katie! Callou Callais! What a wonderful day! Princess Becky said she read Princess Katie's blog! Oh what a joy! Hello Princess Becky! She shouted out from the mountains of Bloggityblog. Let's not let the magical communication devices break down again. After all, it's cold up on the mountains of Bloggityblog and the land of Far Far Away is nice and toasty warm. Princess Katie may need a place to stay in the near future. 

Miss you Becky! Hope everything's going well for you!!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Hello!

It's been a while since I posted anything. Mainly because I went through a minor emotional breakdown of sorts and, well, I didn't need to share that with anyone. I'm better now, but I've remained in a bit of a funk and that doesn't make for interesting blog posts.

However, I did do something exciting today - I made plane reservations to New York City next month! YAY!!! My British friend Mary who's living down there invited me down, so I'm gonna go! It's going to be so much fun. We're going to hit every vegan/vegetarian eating establishment we can find (my pocketbook is already cringing). I'm also going to make a list of veg-friendly stores I'd like to check out. I'm blanking on everything except Moo Shoes at the moment. But I'm really needing some brown ballet flats... yeah, that's it.

In May my friend Robin is getting married in Maryland. I was kinda upset that I probably wasn't going to make it. Until my friend Marie (hi Marie!) got a marvelous idea - road trip!!! So Marie and I are going to drive down to see our friend get hitched. I can't wait. It's going to be so much fun, and I so seldom get to hang out with Marie that it'll be a real treat.

I wonder if now is a good time to tell her I have a habit of getting lost...

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Done.

Re-load 2/3 of my music library into my Mac: Check
Hang out with friend: Check

Worry to the point of insomnia and have a minor emotional breakdown: check

Watch 28 Weeks Later with a beer buzz: check

Eat too much pizza: check

Finally make Chickpea Noodle Soup from Veganomicon: check (note to self: if you use portabello 'shrooms next time, take the gills out so the soup doesn't turn black. D'oh!)

Laundry: about damned time check

Further personal humiliation (aka sign up on local dating site): check

Wonder why the dishwasher is making that weird noise: check

Sit in front of the tele and watch bad Sunday night writer's strike programming: Gimme 10 minutes and then check. 

Friday, January 11, 2008

Thank You Again.

This time I need to thank Alex for telling me I'm being an ass.
Thank you, Alex, for reminding me that my actions have not been kosher. Thank you for reminding me that I'm being selfish, ungrateful and annoying.

Thank you for telling me that I'm wrong.

Mostly, thank you for getting pissed off enough to tell me what everyone's been thinking while they've been supporting me.

Thank you.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Thank You.

I need to send out a "thank you" to my friend Marie. Whether she meant to or not, she put some things into perspective for me. I don't have it that badly. I am lucky.

She didn't say I should quit my bitching. She just offered support. Because she's great like that. But her support got me to thinking, which is the best kind of support you can get. So, thank you Marie! One more reason why you're one of my favorite people.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Things I Learned Today

  1. Caffeine highs make everything better.
  2. I like it when Spring shows up unexpectedly in January.
  3. I really like diet soda.
  4. You can actually miss a kitten that isn't yours. Bodi's parents took her home today.
  5. I need to find better ways to spend my time.
  6. Vacuuming is not an indicator of demonic possession. It's okay to do it once in a while.
  7. I like it when FedEx actually shows up to take the packages away.
  8. Unexpected emails from friends far away can really make an afternoon.
  9. Doing the dishes is an indicator of demonic possession, so avoid it at all costs.

Monday, January 7, 2008

I'm posting.

I don't have much to post today. Sometimes I wonder if anyone's actually reading this. Oh well.
I'm in a weird kind of mood today. Sad, mostly. Ongoing dejectedness regarding lots of stuff but including... well, loves lost, I guess. Loves that weren't ever really mine to begin with, but for whatever reason are in my life. 

It's so hard sometimes to see what could have been, if only. It's frustrating, too, knowing that they're going about their lives happily while you're stuck in the what-if. It's so easy to wallow in jealousy and discontent. Most times I'm pretty good about not doing that. I mean, the last thing I would ever take away from anyone is their happiness. If what makes them happy isn't me, while then I just have to suck it up and get on with it, don't I? 

I don't begrudge anyone their personal bliss. But sometimes it's hard to watch.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

My worthless day

Well, Bodi at least was ready to work this morning...










She loves to sit on keyboards, she does. Cute, but annoying when you're trying to pay bills.

Anyway, my day was "worthless" mainly because I didn't do much of anything. I did get out and take a walk this afternoon, which was great. It was up in the 40 degree range today, which is more my speed. I came home, intending to make some chickpea noodle soup from the Veganomicon. I ended up sleeping on the couch with reruns of Futurama playing. Yeah. I don't nap very often, so I probably needed it. Certainly don't feel like making the soup now though.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Bow to the cuteness...

...that is Bodi. Say hello to Bodi, everyone:










I wish that I could say that Bodi is my new little kitten. Unfortunately, we're just babysitting her for the weekend whilst mum and dad travel to Pennsylvania. She's a tiny little thing, but loves to cuddle. In fact, she woke me up several times last night in order to cuddle. She also came up with a neat new game: jump up on one side of the bed, walk across my throat to cut off all chances of me inhaling, jump off the other side of the bed, repeat. It was great fun for at least one of us involved. 

Who's a pretty little kitty? (insert inane baby babble here)

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Snow.

Snow. Damned, damned snow. Although I shouldn't complain as we didn't get much more than a couple inches. One of my coworkers got well over a foot yesterday. It's finally stopped snowing, but it's now 2 whopping degrees farenheit. What's that... -30 celcius? Who knows. Holy farking cold, and it's going to get down to -2 tonight. Yay. At least it's supposed to bounce back by the end of the week.

Better Kate Than Never

As you've probably noticed (all six of you), over the last few months my contribution to this blog has dwindled significantly. In trying...