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Sunday, January 31, 2016

OMG it's DAY 30!!

Holy crap! It's Day 30! 

Last night I had a dream that I took a bite out of a burger - complete with the bun, cheese and bacon before I could stop myself and THEN a potato chip! Then I broke down sobbing because I was going to have to start the Whole30 over from Day 1. I was a bit frantic when I woke up. I've been known to self sabotage. NOT THIS TIME. NOT. This. Time.

Beautiful day in Central Florida. Got up before 8am, lots to do around the house. My mom came over to help out! She got here while Mr. P. was making breakfast. Nothing fancy - over medium eggs and sandwich steaks. Why mess with a good thing?

So it was a bit chilly this morning so I had put on leggings and a tunic length sweatshirt type top and my mom said "that top is huge". So I told her that I had bought the gray one a size larger because my regular size was too tight in this particular top - which I had ordered earlier in a really pretty magenta - purple color. So I pulled that one out and put it on and it fits. Not only does it fit, but it's loose enough that it doesn't cling anywhere. Like it's JUST RIGHT - like it's how it's supposed to look! She said "that's much better" - I guess I can toss the gray one in the dryer and see if it shrinks at all now!

I also keep pulling up my leggings. You know - leggings. The pants that fit like a second skin and shouldn't be worn as, well...pants. In fact I walked out to the back 40 to get the lawnmower and my arse was nearly hanging out by the time I got there (had my hands full so I couldn't pull them up while walking). For real people - I am now really, really curious as to how much weight I have lost.

Mom wanted something to eat, so I nuked her a tray of TGI Friday's spinach and artichoke dip that was in the freezer (since we won't be eating it) and the rest of an open package of party pumpernickel. Then I whipped up chicken salad for myself and had a bottle of sparkling apple juice. 

I'm kinda beside myself here...Whole30 does magical things people. MAGICAL. 

One of my friends just started yesterday. The food pictures she posted on FaceBook yesterday looked amazing. If I can do it, she can do it! You got this Heather!

Dinner was L.A.T.E. Like 9pm late. Mr. P. didn't bother to take a lunch break while doing stuff around the house, so while he was making dinner he ate 4 Applegate Farms hot dogs with mustard and sauerkraut. Seriously? He seared some shrimp and scallops in clarified butter, garlic, black Hawaiian volcano salt and some pepper and then tossed a bag of mixed veggies in the microwave. It was good. I added spicy cashew sauce because I have half a jar left (and it's good...LOL). I didn't even heat it up. I just took little bits of it with my fork before adding on a shrimp or whatever. Yum yum!

I celebrated by having a large glass of white grape juice - 100% juice of course. I don't love white grape juice. It's not the same as regular grape juice...but I'm kinda cheap and it was CRAZY cheap at BJ's last weekend with a clipless coupon. I prefer the Wellsley Farms house brand 100% apple juice or 100% cranberry from OceanSpray. I did not care for the inexpensive 100% juice "cranberry" that I picked up at the Walmart Neighborhood Grocery. While it was 100% juice, it was not 100% CRANBERRY juice and neither of us liked it enough to buy it again, even if it's $3 less. You get what you pay for.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Day 29 - excited!

Day 29 - last day of the Whole30 at work!

Today was a gorgeous day! Sunny, clear skies, crisp morning and cool through the afternoon. Fall in January. Seriously - the trees have only started turning in the last few weeks.  I took this photo on my way to work on January 22 because they had just changed.

Breakfast was the usual - finished up the box of sandwich steaks and topped them with 3 over medium eggs.

Lunch - surprise! Chicken salad - went with the dried cranberries and a whole (small) fuji apple today. I also had a cup of organic unsweetened applesauce.

Dinner was mushroom burgers with mixed potato hash (sweet and yukons).

 Can't believe we are there!

Friday, January 29, 2016

Day 28 - OMG 2 days left!

Honestly, it's kinda hard to believe that the Whole30 itself is just about over. 28 days in the book and two to go. 

It's been a dreary, cloudy, rainy, yucky two days here in Central Florida. It literally rained ALL DAY today. Varying degrees of course, but it never actually stopped. Yuck! Hey Mother Nature - it's not rainy season!

Breakfast was the new usual! A couple of sandwich steaks and three eggs that ended up over hard today. Oops. I also had a fruit cup.

Lunch was chicken salad - today it had apples, dried cranberries and slivered almonds.
A cup of unsweetened organic applesauce.

I may have had a Larabar. Ok two. I was hungry!

Dinner was blackened Mahi Mahi topped with avocado, steamed carrots and green beans with crispy fried prosciutto.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Day 27

It's Day 27 and we just keep plugging along. Last night I got home later than usual 7:15pm or so and Mr. P. hadn't started dinner. In fact he hadn't really thought about what to make for dinner. He had gone from work (at 3:00pm) to a friend's house to fix a pool pump. I don't know what time he got home, but he said it was later than he anticipated. I suspect he had been home well over an hour, if not two. Of course he was camped out on the couch watching TV.  So he asked me what I wanted for dinner. Ummm seriously? I just said "These are the kind of nights you just want to go out and get something, but you can't" and walked off. Needless to say, dinner happened around 8:30pm. 

Now it's "tomorrow" and it's been raining since before I got up at 6:00am and here's what Accuweather has to say about it...

The high is supposed to be 73 today. It's currently 66 and I'm not so sure it's going to change that much. These are the days I wish I had rain boots - my shoes / feet will be soaked from walking across the yard to get to the Jeep when I leave for work. Yay.

Breakfast - 3 sandwich steaks and 3 over medium eggs and a fruit cup!

Lunch - chicken salad, fruit cup, apple sauce, and dates in the afternoon.

Dinner - thrown stuff in a skillet and call it a stir fry. Shrimp, cabbage, coconut aminos, olive oil, mushrooms, garlic, green beans...and I added spicy cashew sauce to mine.

  • The annoying cough I've had since July is gone. Everyone had it - I'm pretty sure there was mold in the classroom where our offices were temporarily moved during a remodel of the office. 

  • I've been able to wear eye makeup (aside from my usual waterproof gel liner) the past two weeks or so. I gave it up well over a year ago because my eyes were watering so bad that I was taking allergy pills on a daily basis. Haven't taken the pills since before Day 1 and have only had 1 day that my eyes were watery (just last week).

  • The arthritis in my thumb joints hasn't flared up from eating seafood. Years ago my coworker (who is a nurse) told me that eating too much seafood would aggravate arthritis. Sure enough - if I had seafood regularly my thumbs would be killing me a few days later and it would last 2 or 3 days. No pain in January!

  • No heartburn. Haven't had it since prior to starting Whole30.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Day 26 - I don't think I have ever stuck to any sort of "diet" 100% for this long.

I can't believe it's Day 26. SO close to 30! The longest I have ever done any type of "diet" (change in...) was a year. I did Weight Watchers for a little over a year, but let's face it. I did NOT stick to the plan 100%.  To my knowledge I have been 100% compliant thus far. I can only assume that Outback didn't fail me - everything appeared to be plain as I had ordered it on every visit and Sharon's was very accommodating. 

I've already decided to continue making Paleo and probably Primal meals and sticking with making breakfast and lunch for the most part. I will admit (now) that probably every day that I worked in December I stopped at Burger King for 2 bacon egg and cheese croissants and a large diet coke. I won't pick that habit back up. I'll save the "treat" (if you can really call it that) of drive-thru breakfast for travel days - and we typically stop at Steak n Shake for a BEC bagel or an egg and cheese biscuit with hash brownsWe'll just have to switch out the diet coke for water. 

Today's Eats:

Breakfast - 3 slices of sandwich steak topped with 3 over medium eggs and chopped up in a bowl.

Lunch - chicken salad, unsweetened applesauce, a fruit cup, and last night's leftovers - a small piece of flounder, and a scoop of veggies.

Dinner - flat iron steaks on the grill, herbed skillet potatoes and mixed veggies.  


I didn't sleep well AGAIN last night. Woke up tired and had the afternoon slump. 

My phone is jacked up. It's still within the warranty period, but they're telling me 10-15 days turn around time, plus however long it takes for me to ship it to them and for them to ship it back. So I could put my sim card in the last standing Galaxy S3 that barely holds a battery charge or I can pick up another inexpensive phone from Amazon. Decisions decisions...  


Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Day 25

Day 25 - 5 day count down!

This morning we both had Steak N Eggs - well sandwich steak. Close enough. Better than just eggs. I actually ate at home for once. I made myself 3 steak slices and 3 over medium eggs. Tomorrow I'll try to remember to take a picture. I'm getting bad about that.
It's a nice change to have meat with the eggs since I can't find compliant bacon locally.

Mr. P. packed his lunch. Not sure what he took, I noticed 2 of the 4 applesauce cups were gone. I assume he took a couple of apples. I got him some compliant sauerkraut - so he probably took a couple of Applegate Farms hot dogs. At least he won't be grouchy when he gets home.

First thing this morning I dropped my stuff at my desk and went to the break room to fill my beloved Pink Florida Gators Tervis Tumbler for the first time today and dang it if there wasn't half a chocolate cake in there. I managed to ignore it - every.single.time. I went to refill my cup.

I had leftover sweet potato hash, turkey, cantaloupe, apple sauce, and some dried cranberries that packed for lunch. I also went to Outback with coworkers where I had a plain seared sirloin and a double portion of plain mixed veggies. 

Yes. I was starving.

Dinner was delicious! Mr. P. made gluten free pan fried coconut flounder, roasted squash and zucchini and fresh steamed broccoli.


Starving and tired. Last night was the first night I haven't slept well. I felt like I never really went to sleep last night, just laid in bed in the dark for 8 hours. I'm pretty sure I was asleep at some point, but not in my head! I was dyin' between 1:00 and 2:00 this afternoon. It didn't help that I was in a meeting that entire hour.  I made a short to-do list for tonight. None of it is going to happen. I'm taking a shower and going to bed. I don't care that it's only 9pm.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Day 24!

Day 24 - a lazy (ha ha ha) Sunday. We did actually sit down and read the paper (at home) and we did go OUT for breakfast before running our errands.

I suggested Sharon's. A great little home cookin' place that has been around for years. They know us there, I figured they'd do what they could to make it work.

Lucky for us, one of the breakfast specials was flat iron steak n eggs. SOLD. Grilled flat iron, over medium eggs and they made the home fries on the griddle for us. It was nice to not have to do breakfast dishes. Of course breakfast just cost $27, but hey...we aren't exactly eating out much these days.

Onward to the shopping. We hit up BJ's first where gas was $1.65! YAY - although this morning I heard it would start going back up soon. Mr. P. needed to pick up something at Home Depot so he just dropped me at BJ's and ran down to the other end of the shopping plaza to do his thing. I went in for shrimp, vinegar and sparkling water and $170 later had a full cart.

Grapes, organic Fuji apples, cole slaw mix, salad shrimp, mahi mahi fillets, dates, vinegar, unsweetened organic apple sauce cups, 100% beef sandwich steaks (think steak'ums only better), Applegate Farms hot dogs, oh my gosh I found so many good things this week! I also found that they now have extra light tasting olive oil woo hoo - which I need for making mayo. I got a larger container last week at the Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market so I didn't pick any up this week, but YAY that it's in stock now! I also picked up organic apple juice, cranberry juice (lesson learned if you want cranberry juice, stick to OceanSpray - I bought the 'house brand' last week and while it was 100% juice it was so much of a mix that it didn't really taste like cranberry at all). Pork chops went in the basket too. Oh and Spanish olives. I don't like olives, but Mr. P. will eat a whole jar as a snack.

Aldi was next on the list. Peppers, eggs (3 dozen...we buy 3 dozen eggs a week now), sweet potatoes, Yukon Gold potatoes, avocados, coconut water (100% - no added sugar!), cauliflower, squash...blah blah - all produce stuff. I did find compliant fruit leather! I didn't buy any, but their organic brand was all fruit! Exciting!

Lunch was a Larabar. 

Dinner - I wasn't in the mood to cook, I tossed a bunch of crap in a skillet and called it a stir fry. Salad shrimp, green beans, cole slaw mix, mushrooms, garlic, coconut aminos, clarified butter...and then I made a spicy cashew sauce and mixed that in with mine (SO GOOD), Mr. P. doesn't like cashews. He wouldn't even try it. I didn't think it tasted like cashews at all, more like a peanut sauce. His loss! I have a whole jar now. It'll be good on chicken - or that leftover turkey with some zoodles for lunch later this week.

All in all another successful day in the books.

Day 23...

Here we are...Day 23. I was hoping this was the 7 day count down. I will say that I am looking forward to Day 31 because I am going to make CHILI. I certainly hope it will still be cold. I'm a little sad that I've missed out on my favorite "winter weather" meals. Being in FL we really only have a handful of cold days so I never get to make ALL my favorite cold weather meals, but here we are, probably the coldest it will get in Central Florida and I can't make hot cocoa. I can't make piping hot apple cinnamon oatmeal. No chili and corn bread, no potato soup with homemade croutons and crispy bacon. Creamy chicken and wild rice soup is also out. Just a few things I'm missing this morning as I contemplate going to get my socks. My feet are freezing. My feet also look skinny. I can actually see some bones...and if I sit up straight and suck my stomach in - my boobs actually stick out farther than my gut again. 

I have to say, I'm a bit curious as to how much (if any) weight I have lost. I won't know until I go back to the doctor. 

Mr. P. fried up the last three eggs for himself this morning. So now I need to figure out what I'm going to have for breakfast. There are a couple of small Yukon Golds left and a couple of uncooked sweet potatoes and an apple or two (clearly I need to go shopping today). I might dice them all up and make my self some mixed potato apple hash. 

Last night I gave Mr. P. some new salts. I popped into Marshall's to pick up a birthday gift and I always have to check out the gourmet food section because they always have cool stuff. They had some compliant dried apples but I thought they were a bit too pricey. Then I found the baggies of salt. They were $2.99 each (also's SALT). Mr. P loves to grill and make rubs for meat that he puts on the smoker, so I'm always up for fancy salt to add to the mix. I picked up black Hawaiian Lava Salt, Hickory Smoked Sea Salt and Apple Smoked Sea Salt. The smoked ones are quite smokey smelling!

I ended up making hash, but no apple. It was delicious!

I scrubbed the potatoes, peeled and diced the sweet potato, diced and rinsed the Yukon Golds, tossed in a skillet with clarified butter and stirred it around a bit over medium heat. Once the butter was sizzling I sprinkled on some paprika, white pepper and black Hawaiian Lava Sea Salt added a splash of water and put a lid on it. I set the timer for 5 minutes and came back to stir. Twice. Checked a piece of each type and called it done. I think Mr. P. would even like it and he's really not big on sweet potatoes.

I had a coconut cream pie Larabar for a snack late afternoon and there's a turkey breast in the oven for dinner. Not sure what I'm going to make to go with it. I might dice some more sweet potatoes and toss in a handful of dried cranberries that Amazon delivered yesterday. Can't seem to find any without added sugar around here.

Dinner was delicious - although there was an issue with the turkey. So let's just clear the air. I don't cook. I'm not good at it. So I made a RAW turkey breast for the first time. OMG raw meat is so gross. Anyway - I followed the directions - which were to remove the outer bag, but leave the mesh on, brush turkey with oil. Easy enough. I brushed the turkey with coconut oil, put it on a cooling rack in a jelly roll pan and put it in the oven. 350 for about 2 hours (per the bag). At 2 hours, the  included timer still hadn't popped up. at 2 hours and 15 minutes Mr. P stuck a thermometer in it and it was done (per internal temp reading) - timer still hadn't popped (and for the record it never did). So about that oil...apparently, I didn't oil it enough because there was no slicing this turkey. It just came apart in chunks because it was all stuck to the mesh. It still tasted good.  We had the sweet potato hash with cranberries and mixed veggies to round it out. Not pretty, but pretty good.


Saturday, January 23, 2016

Day 22!

Seriously...I feel like the countdown has been started from day 1.

Today was my half day at work so I just threw something in my bag for breakfast. That turned out to be a cooked sweet potato and a container of cashews.

Then I worked late - somehow I was short 5 hours this week! I made up 2. Too much to do at the house to stick around and make up the rest.

I ordered Outback curbside to pick up on my way home. The usual - plain steak, plain sweet potato, plain mixed veggies. On the form you pick your entree and how you want it cooked (seared or fire grilled) and then your two sides and they both have a box for any special requests - and the potatoes pop up with check boxes for toppings. I chose "Dry" for my sweet potato. Then at the bottom there's a box for any special requests for the main dish. I put "plain" and they called me twice to verify that "plain" meant - wait for it.... no seasoning. Are there multiple definitions of "plain"? Whatever - it was ready when I got there AND I had a 10% off lunch coupon. Saved me $2...

I rushed home and gobbled it up while watching PLL on the DVR before Mr. P. got home.

Then I emptied the dishwasher (yet again...) and did the dishes (yet again) and reloaded the dishwasher (one more time...) and there are two skillets currently soaking in the kitchen sink. 

Then there's this adorable little knock at the door. I froze. Who the heck is knocking on my door. I never answer the door when I'm not expecting someone. I peeked out the window in the office - close call. It was the little girl from two doors down...and her wagon of GIRL SCOUT COOKIES. I know it was only a temporary reprieve...she'll be back. Maybe I'll buy a box for Georgia or stash a box of Thin Mints in the freezer for what seems like 6 months from now. 

Now that it's nearly 6pm I need to get the laundry started, finish the damn dishes and figure out what to make this weekend.

I'm thinking stuffed zucchini boats will be in there somewhere...and a frittata.

 Dinner - burger in a bowl from 5 Guys. Extra grilled mushrooms for me, lettuce, mustard, onion and mushrooms for the Mr. Pretty sure that's not going to be enough food for him. $17 - for what amounts to a small salad and 4 hamburger patties. At least I don't have to do any more dishes today. 


Friday, January 22, 2016

Day 21

It's Day 21 - shouldn't I be thrilled that there are only 10 days left? Yes...yes I should. Except that the Whole30 is a bit of a lie. It will take most of another two weeks to get through the reintroduction phase. So yeah, technically it's 10 days and on January 31 I get to have PEANUT BUTTER and BEANS.  And then February 1 and 2 it's back to Whole30. Then February 3 I get to add back Gluten Free Grains or something, and then February 4 and 5 it's back to Whole30, etc. So we're hanging in there, but we still have a way to go.

Today I will not eat all of my food in one sitting.

I had chicken salad for breakfast.

I had chicken salad for lunch.

I had a handful of slivered almonds and a Larabar for a snack.

Today I realized that we are at the ACTUAL halfway point. I mean traditional math would say that half of 30 is 15 and I did have a mini celebration of "halfway there" with a little Bon Jovi moment, but after looking at my calendar and penciling in the reintroduction schedule on my work calendar I realized that we still have 21 days to go. That's Whole30 math right there...the magic of 30 days crammed into 42 days :-p I feel cheated. Lied too. Like I would kill someone for a toasted cheese sandwich and a bowl of tomato soup right about yesterday.

Dinner was scallops with mixed veggies and sugar snap peas. 

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Day 20

Today was a bit…odd. I woke up starving – not surprised after the epic dinner fail last night. The hubs took the day off to work on the roof next door. I packed most of my lunch (I forgot my sweet potato on the kitchen counter – already cooked) as well as breakfast. Got to work on time for a change and promptly ate all of it. ALL.OF.IT.

I guess on the plus side, I worked through lunch because I wasn’t hungry. Around 4:30 I did eat a Larabar.

I watched The Martian. What a great movie! I wanted to see it in the theatre, but never got around to it.

So to recap:

Breakfast: ground beef and potatoes topped with three fried eggs, a coconut cream pie Larabar, a fruit cup, and a bowl of chicken salad with apples, grapes and almonds.

Late Afternoon Snack: coconut cream pie Larabar (yeah - these are only supposed to be "emergency" use for Whole30)

Dinner: blackened Mahi Mahi topped with sliced avocado with sauteed green beans and sugar snap peas on the side.

Water...lots of water.

Are we done yet? I'm not really struggling to keep myself from cheating or anything, but DAMN I just want to go out to dinner and not have to do the dishes. I'm talking two full dishwasher loads per day, plus the anodized aluminum pots and pans that can't go in the dishwasher. Make it stop!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Day 19

I woke up in a great mood on Day 19. We are FINALLY getting a few days in a row of "cold" weather here in Florida. This morning it was 43 degrees when I got in the Jeep. I know that isn't "cold", but that's typical "winter" in Florida and it's cold enough to wear boots and maybe a scarf without roasting at some point during the day. We take full advantage! That said - since we own homes in both Florida and Tennessee - I can tell you that 43 in Florida is MUCH colder feeling than 43 in Tennessee. The humidity makes a crazy difference. When we're in Tennessee and it's in the 40s I'm fine in jeans and a 3/4 sleeve tee and flip flops! Maybe a cardigan if we're going to be outside for an extended period of time. The locals will have on a full furry hooded parka like they're expecting snow.  Speaking of snow. 39 years ago today it snowed all the way down to Miami, FL. The Day it Snowed in Miami  and Snow in Tampa - I was only 4 so I don't remember it, however I do remember the last time we had snow in Orlando - it was Christmas 1989 (well a couple of days before Christmas).

I made myself breakfast today. Since it was freezing in the house I wanted a hot breakfast. So I whipped up another batch of last night's dinner - only I made everything separate and tossed it together at the end. MUCH better looking that way. It still needs something. I mean it's fine, but some seasoning would boost it. I think I will pick up some sausage to make this next week.

For lunch I had chicken salad, a fruit cup and a sweet potato. Nothing exciting there. I do actually like my chicken salad, but I do wish I could get my mayo to taste more like Duke's

Dinner is balsamic herb chicken thighs, broccoli and a new recipe - Marinated Grilled Mushrooms. Sadly, the chicken was a dud. Like so bad it all went in the garbage. An entire bag of chicken thighs worth. They had this funky texture and were loaded with fat. LOADED. As in - where's the meat? I also didn't care for the mushrooms. Which wasn't really a surprise as I am not a fan of lemon juice. I don't want a lemon in my water, or tea, or the Diet Coke I used to drink. I don't want it squeezed over my salad or seafood. I just don't like it. 

So here it is 9pm and I'm eating chicken salad. Which means I will have to make more tomorrow and figure out what's for lunch since I was planning on leftover chicken. 

On a happier note - I got an Amazon box today! A big ol' bag of cashews and a box of coconut cream pie Larabars. Which reminds me, I ate my 2nd Apple Pie Larabar today. Thank God I only bought two. Blech! The coconut one is good.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Day 18

Seriously, the "second 15" is flying by. It probably helps that the first three days of it was a three-day weekend. And as we all know from experience, a short four day work week will also fly by and that, my friends, leaves us with just EIGHT days.

Not really. Once we are done with the 30, on the 31st we get to have beans. So my first two days back at work will still be Whole30. And then through the rest of the reintroduction there's nearly two full weeks. But that's ok! I'm 100% sure I have never stuck to any "diet" 100% for 30 days straight. This one...this one is truly NOT a diet. Instead it's a reintroduction to REAL food. Food our bodies are built to make use of by actually digesting them and extracting the vitamins, minerals, and actual nutrients, not stuff made in a lab somewhere.

Today I have eaten a handful of dates and had some of my coveted 100% apple/cranberry "soda" (sparkling juice). It's a few minutes until 5pm.

I ran up to the grocery store, let me rephrase that, I DROVE up to the grocery store, because I needed light tasting olive oil. I went to the Walmart Neighborhood Market (which I hate, but I didn't want it to take an hour going into Publix). I, of course, forgot my list. It was a short list. I remembered 3 of the 4 things on it. I spent $51. I needed light tasting olive oil, a yellow pepper, unsweetened applesauce (which I forgot), and balsamic vinegar. What I bought was, a large container of the olive oil (because the regular size jar is enough to make 2 batches of mayo and nothing else), paper plates, coconut oil spray (yay soy free and compliant!), balsamic vinegar, another bottle of my sparkling juice (nearly 1/2 what I paid for it at Publix), two bottles of 100% cranberry juice, foil, freezer bags, regular bags, unsweetened coconut flakes, a big bag of slivered almonds...I should never go shopping unsupervised. That said, we were out of gallon size bags.

So when I got home, I whipped up the balsamic herb marinade and threw a bag of boneless, skinless chicken thighs in it (in a gallon bag) and tossed it in the fridge to thaw and marinate overnight. I tossed six large chicken breasts in the crock pot with some homemade stock to cook up for my chicken salad and then I made a batch of Zingy Ginger Dressing. I'm already 100% sure I will not love it like I love Kobe's. LOL I'm sure theirs has sugar in it.

Dinner ended up being another one of those thrown together things. I found a pound of ground beef in the freezer so I dropped that in a skillet with some pink Himalayan sea salt and then hit up Google for something to do with it. I had a few Yukon gold potatoes left so I went with this recipe - minus the cheese.

Ground Beef Egg and Potato Skillet and then I sauteed the rest of a bag of green beans with a little clarified butter. Honestly, it looks kinda gross, but it tastes ok. If I make it again I would scramble the eggs and then add toss them with the already cooked ground beef and potatoes. I would actually fry up the potatoes nice and crispy too. So yeah, basically I would use the ingredients and then do my own thing. It was a starting point.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Day 17

It's day 17 and honestly, it's not hard. If I can stick with this for 30 days, anyone can.

Most days I'm not even hungry first thing in the morning. Today I didn't make anything to eat until after noon.

We are out of clarified butter (more being made right now), so I dumped the remaining frozen salad shrimp in a big skillet with half a bag of frozen, whole green beans, a big squeeze of minced garlic and a splash of coconut aminos. I forgot the mushrooms. *sigh* I always forget something.

One thing I have noticed, I have arthritis in my thumbs and a couple of fingers and typically when I eat a lot of seafood it flares up. I've been eating a lot of shrimp and have had zero pain in those joints. Interesting, no?

Dinner is at 5. We are meeting the family at Outback to celebrate my dad's birthday. So yeah - I'll be having a 9 oz sirloin, plain, with mixed vegetables, plain and you guessed it, a plain sweet potato.\

I just ran across this recipe for Ground Turkey & Sweet Potato Skillet meal that I think will make an appearance this week.

We got my dad an electric smoker from Masterbuilt. I don't really want to wrap it, as it weighs a ton, but I am trying to get rid of stuff, wrapping paper included, so I suppose I will figure out how to wrap the top and sides at least and get it loaded in the back of the Jeep. Clearly we will not be taking it IN to the restaurant.

My friends Meredith & Chris Facebook messaged me last night asking about Whole30. I gave them the Cliff's Notes version and a link to the Whole30 website. They're thinking about it.

One of my big take-aways thus far is avoiding processed food. All the FrankenFood that is available now is doing terrible things to our bodies. I read somewhere that when your body doesn't know what to do with something (like artificial sweeteners, chemical preservatives, etc) it turns to fat whatever it can't process and / or remove as waste. Aside from that I firmly believe that all the genetically modified food, all the chemicals (preservatives, additives, flavor enhancers, dyes, and pesticides) are to blame for many of the cancers, the increased food allergies in children, the huge rise in autism, ADHD, ADD, most of the behavior problems in children...none of that stuff is good for you - it can't be, and I can't believe that it doesn't eventually cause genetic issues and mutations that lead to more issues.

The second is avoiding High Fructose Corn Syrup and added Fructose in general. Seriously that stuff is in EVERYTHING!

I'm thinking ahead to when we start to reintroduce things to our diet and I miss cheese. Oh do I miss cheese. And cream. I can pretty much live without rice - it was one of those "no-nos" for so many years that it was no big deal to ditch it, however, I do love going to the Japanese Hibachi places once in awhile and you have to have the fried rice! And I used to make a killer chicken and wild rice soup (not often though) so honestly it would be a handful of times a year that any rice would come back into our diets. Pretty sure it wasn't a problem before.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Day 16

I slept well, until just about 7am at which point I was jolted awake by a leg cramp. I guess I need to up my magnesium intake.

Today is cleaning day (oh boy!). Laundry, household chore, getting the Christmas stuff actually packed up and back in the attic, cleaning cages, more laundry, doing dishes...

Breakfast: a couple of pretty little fried eggs atop Chef John's hash browns.

Lunch: chicken salad made with homemade mayo, apples and green grapes

Dinner: we revisited breakfast for dinner because I had leftover hash browns

I got a lot done around the house - WAY more energy than usual. All the laundry is done, everything has been vacuumed, tons of stuff put out for trash and recycling, two dishwasher loads run and put away, plus a sink full of hand wash items. 

Smirnoff and I even went out back to have some time in the brilliant Florida sun!

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Day 15! Oooooh we're halfway theeeere oooooh ooooh...

Well...we have made it to the halfway point! 15 days in, 15 days to go.

I decided to look up a "symptom" today. I'm a little concerned - per the Whole30 Timeline this should have happened early on. Am I doomed to have to do another Whole30 - a Whole60?! OMG I don't think I can...not if I have to stick to it 100%. Check out what it says about Days 12-15. I was a little early on my cake dream LOL.

I'm going to continue trusting the process.

Short day at work AND going into a 3 day weekend! I took what was left of my chicken salad, the leftover baby carrots from dinner (seriously, it was like 7 baby carrots), a sweet potato and the new bag of dates in my lunch bag. I polished off the chicken and a couple of dates before having to sit in a meeting for an hour.

My tall, blond, thin, perfect posture at all times, no idea why she isn't a model, co-worker said my outfit was cute today. It's a dress that is too short for work, so I wear it with leggings or tights (today it was tights with round, gold studs down the side of each leg) and knee high black boots. An outfit I've worn many times to work as I've had it for several years. Could be nothing, could be that it just looks better on me. Who knows.

Here's a stock photo of the dress - the colors are not nearly as bright as they are in the photo. Much more muted (like the lime green is really more of an olive). The trim around the neckline is metallic gold (hence going with the gold studded tights)

Home now and need to get a bit of food in me before an afternoon appointment with my financial planner. First I had to do some other financial planning - my husband is a data hog. Last month my cell phone bill was almost DOUBLE because of data overage. I just spent 20 minutes on hold to get them to split him off to his own account.

For lunch I threw together a stir-fry. Sort of. That was the plan anyway. I grabbed some frozen shrimp, and frozen green beans and tossed them in a skillet with some clarified butter and a tablespoon-ish of coconut aminos and got them all cooked up and went to toss in some cabbage (aka coleslaw in a bag) and it was all nasty. So it went in the compost bowl and so I squeezed in a big blob of minced garlic, gave in a good flip and stir and dumped it all in a bowl. It was good! Of course 3 hours later and I am starving, but it was enough to get me through my afternoon meeting. I would have added a couple more shrimp and another handful of green beans had I known the cabbage was bad. Oh well - live and learn, next time I'll pull all the ingredients before I start to cook! That's probably how normal people do it right?

Dinner looked a whole lot like lunch. I threw the rest of the shrimp and green beans in the skillet, added some more clarified butter, coconut aminos, garlic, mushrooms and shredded carrot and cranked it up on high (don't judge...I was hungry!) stirred until hot, dumped in two bowls and called it a night.

Here's to 2ish more weeks!

Friday, January 15, 2016

Day 14 - time has slowed down

Sadly, I am not holding the winning PowerBall ticket that was sold in Florida. Or Tennessee for that matter. Shattered dreams! All the good I could have done with that jackpot...I hope the three (at current count) winners choose to spread at least a little of their newfound wealth around to help make the world a better place.

It's day 14. It feels like it is taking FOR.EVER. for the halfway point to get here. Did I mention I'm sleeping like a rock? This morning Mr. P. woke me up and I asked him if it was 5:15 or 6:15 because the clock on his nightstand got moved just a hair and the ceiling projection was right on the edge of a soffit that is over the head of our bed. Turns out it was 6:15. I said "great, why didn't my alarm go off at 6?" as I blindly grabbed for my phone. He said "It 6" Oh. Hmmm well, it WAS like a foot away from my head so - wow really? I slept thru the alarm. Ok then - time to change the chime I guess! I was tired yesterday. I did go to bed around 10. I am kinda struggling this morning. I'd like to go back to bed. 

Not going to happen - especially since I didn't win the PowerBall.

Alas - I'm up and there is already a large reptile in my shower, so I guess I'm not going back to bed.

Breakfast: chicken salad, fruit and a little almond butter

Lunch: Apple Cider Vinegar chicken, sweet potato and fruit (let it be known that I sat in our break room ALONE eating my lunch surrounded by trays of food from the catered lunch today - Caesar salad, rosemary chicken, alfredo pasta, rolls, butter, cookies, brownies, tropical chips, sweet tea and soda)

Dinner: Apple Cider Vinegar chicken, steamed broccoli, cauliflower and baby carrots plus a small glass of cranberry juice (I am rather tired of water, I don't drink coffee and I can't stand unsweetened tea - that's just not southern!)

Today's observations:

  • I can't see a difference, but I'm not struggling with my seat belt
  • For the most part I am not hungry
  • Planning is key
  • It's easy to say no
I printed out a 2016 monthly calendar. I marked off my January days of Whole30. I plugged in my reintroduction days and what I should add to my diet those days. I went out through the end of March and wrote in places that I want to go out to eat after our Whole30 is complete (which is like the middle of February once you add in the reintroduction phase). I also added a couple of meals that I really want - like toasted cheese sandwiches and tomato soup! It's finally gotten cold here and I can't have a sandwich. Or a good chili (sorry - chili HAS to have beans and cornbread!). We typically go out to breakfast on Sunday mornings so I added that back in and have already adjusted my regular order in my head. I read somewhere that 3 meals a week that aren't fully Whole30 is reasonable. I figured I would add in one day a week for lunch out with my co-workers, Sunday breakfast and one dinner out or one home cooked dinner that isn't optimal. Like cowboy beans and corn casserole.

I wish I had taken before photos and measurements. If you're thinking about doing Whole30, be sure to do those two things. You're not allowed to weigh or measure yourself during the Whole30. They want you to focus on the food, your cravings, what you struggle with, your overall relationship with food - we all know it's typically all about the number on the scale. I will never be skinny. I have NEVER been skinny. I don't have a desire to be skinny. I want to be average. Just plain old average. I sort of want to get back into running. I'm not looking to get into marathons or even half marathons, but to be able to run (or at least jog) a whole 5K again would be great. I remember back in 1997 when I went through a bad break-up I did the stress-depression diet and dropped 35 pounds in a couple of weeks. Once I was out of bed I started walking to try to keep the weight off. That turned into jogging and then running. I had a two mile route mapped through our neighborhood and I did it every day. Sometimes twice a day. I started taking a gym bag to work and changing into my running gear before I left so I just parked the Jeep and went running before going into the house for fear I wouldn't do it once I went inside. I didn't lose any more weight, but it was enough to keep me from gaining any of it back once I started eating again. I can find time for two miles again.  

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Day 13 - getting closer...

Very slow day at the office. I had the munchies big time.

It was chilly this morning so I busted out my favorite winter outfit - a black cable knit sweater dress from Ralph Lauren and black boots. Here's a stock photo of the dress (sadly, it doesn't look QUITE like that on me, but I still love it)

I had a big bowl of chicken salad with almonds for breakfast.

Then I had some melon. And some cashews. And then an Apple Pie Lara Bar. Not sure about that one - VERY heavy on the cinnamon!

Eventually I had lunch...which wasn't much. A large sweet potato, a fruit cup, some melon...and some bonus grapes and fresh pineapple that were leftover from catering a meeting today. 

Before leaving I had a second Lara Bar - coconut cream pie. Seriously - someone take the fork out of my hand! I went for a walk around the building a couple of times hoping it would help. Plus water. Lots of water.

Dinner was another round of Apple Cider Vinegar pork chops - this time with broccoli and roasted acorn squash. It was delicious. No surprise there. 

Surprise! I remembered to take a picture tonight.
Funny - I just posted about not having that afternoon slump. Today I was tired. T-I-R-E-D! All day - although I didn't have an issue getting up when the alarm went off.

I had Mr. P. throw the last 3 chicken breasts in with the apple cider vinegar while he was making the pork chops so I would have some protein for lunch the next couple of days. We'll see how that turned out. It's packed and ready to go in my lunch bag in the morning.

Aside from being tired today - I feel good.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Day 12 - getting closer to the halfway mark!

Things I have noticed since starting this "diet" - I'm not tired in the morning. Don't get me wrong, I am still not a morning person, but when the alarm goes off, I get up. No snoozing! I get up a lot more while I'm at work. Constantly up and down going to the break room to refill my Tervis Tumbler. No slump in the afternoon - that "it's 3:30 and I can barely keep my eyes open" feeling. 


  • Breakfast - chicken salad (with grapes, apples and almonds)
  • Lunch - leftover Apple Cider Vinegar pork chop, a sweet potato and a spoonful of balsamic rosemary potatoes. Both the pork and the potatoes warmed up well. Pork in the microwave and potatoes in the toaster oven. Just as good as they were the night before!
  • Dinner - bunless burgers with sauteed mushrooms and roasted asparagus, squash and zucchini.

Here's the recipe for the burgers. 

We left out the bacon (still haven't found any locally that is compliant) and they were quite tasty! I ate mine plain (aside from the mushrooms) and Mr. P. slathered his with mayo and mustard. I found it to be quite good on it's own. 

I keep forgetting to take pictures. 

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Day 11 - closing in on the halfway mark!

Day 11 - honestly, 30 days will fly by in no time.

Breakfast was a slice of leftover frittata and a sweet potato. My boss took us to lunch today (Outback at my request - because seriously, they are the most accommodating) and I had the usual.  This particular location has questionable water, but I managed to down two glasses. They were crazy slow - and not busy. Lunch was a bit early for me, since I work until almost 7 so I had a Coconut Cream Pie Larabar (it had coconut in it...that was the only similarity to coconut cream pie) it was good and I also had 5 dates stuffed with raw cashews. 

Apparently two hours of grocery shopping wasn't enough for me yesterday, so I went from work to my "Secret Publix" and as I said before I was in and out in under 30 minutes including parking, unloading all the plastic bags and foam trays, stuffing them in the recycle bins and covering most of the store. Yay for recycling! Cleared a big pile out of my living room by finally taking the bags. I picked up an onion, 2 containers of cut cantaloupe (it was BOGO and I HATE cutting melon - I don't care how much cheaper it is to DIY!), 10 bags of frozen veggies and TWO TREATS! You have no idea how excited I am about the treats. I found 10 ounce bottles of sparkling 100% apple juice and in the with the regular sparkling juices I found a big bottle of 100% apple-cranberry. FIZZY DRINK! Pricey at $1.59 and $4.29, but I will enjoy them. 

Mr. P. made another pound of clarified butter - errr reduced a pound of butter to however much is left that is now clarified? Whatever.  Dinner was a really good, juicy boneless pork chop with sauteed green beans and balsamic rosemary potatoes. I asked him if he thought we could continue to eat this way most of the time and his response was "I'm still pretty p*ssed about no beer, no cheese and no bread!" mmmmkay. Well, he will continue to cook this way for dinner for me and he can have beer with it. It'll work out. I'm pretty sure the grocery budget has gone up LESS than the dining out budget has gone down so we're also saving money. Plus I can actually go back to running errands on my lunch break which will be awesome. I'm pretty sure I can continue to eat this way - once you're prepared it's not hard. I'll get better at food prep as well. 

Here's the recipe for the pork chops. 

Apple Cider Vinegar Pork Chops (Low Carb and Paleo):

4 thick cut pork chops (bone-in preferred)
3 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1 cup homemade bone broth/chicken stock (check the ingredients if it isn’t homemade)
Heat 1-2 Tbsp of oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Season the pork chops with salt, pepper, and garlic powder, to taste.  Sear the pork chops for 3-4 minutes per side or until golden brown.  Add the apple cider vinegar and chicken stock and scrape up the bits of food off the bottom of the pan.  Cover the skillet loosely with foil and cook for 4-5 minutes or until the pork chops are cooked through.  Serve the pan gravy over the pork chops.

I hope eating this way actually makes the change my doctor says it will - 

The same co-worker (who happens to be a nurse) pulled me aside today and asked if I felt any different. She said "Truly, even since last week your face looks different, you just look different." 

The first time I'm sure it was diet related. This week - maybe it's diet related, maybe it's because I got my hair done? I mean it's not really "different" per se - I had a Brazilian Blowout with a Keratin top coat done on Friday. No real cut - though he did trim the ends - I suspect because he didn't trim them evenly last time and now that my hair is more straight it showed LOL, no color change...just silky, shiny, straight hair. I love it by the way - can't keep my fingers out of it! My hair is thick, coarse and has just enough of a natural wave to be a frizzy mess in the Florida humidity. I typically spend 30 -45 minutes blow drying it straight with a lovely smelling combination of a serum, a creme, and a heat protector. If I'm feeling super motivated I also go over the top layer with a flat iron. Not having to do that will be a Godsend!

Bonus Post - with NON Whole30 compliant recipes (Low Carb)

**Bonus Post**

This is a post I wrote in November that either I never really finished or I just forgot to publish.  So here it is now - enjoy the recipes. They were good!

Funny how just the slightest dip in the temps here in Florida gets me moving and grooving. As you can see - hey my blog isn't dead!  Well not exactly dead anyway...dormant maybe.

At any rate today the high was like 73! I actually turned off the AC and opened the windows. It has been glorious! Now if you haven't had the pleasure of living in Florida - you don't know how rare it is that we can stand to open the windows. Usually it's still too humid. Today is an exception. Tomorrow the AC will be back on - high in the mid 80s again and predicting back to 90 by the end of the week. Needless to say I took advantage of it to the fullest extent today!

First - Mr. Paisley got called into work at 7am - and I couldn't go back to sleep. So I was up early - went to toss in some laundry and realized how nice it was. Off with the air and opened up the house! I spent a lot of time in the kitchen. I baked bacon. I put together a creamy chicken dish in the crock pot (thanks Pinterest). I made a huge batch of apple cinnamon oatmeal for breakfast during the week. I boiled a dozen eggs to make egg salad for lunch for part of the week. As if that wasn't enough I also made chicken and cheese roll ups just after the hubs got home from work AND I put together a red wine pot roast that is in the fridge and  just needs to be put in the crock in the morning. I love those crock pot liner bags. I threw all the ingredients in there, twisted the bag closed and stuck a chip clip on it. It's sitting in a bowl (just in case) in the fridge.  

I did so much kitchen work today I've run the dishwasher TWICE. That's just crazy. I'm excited that I'll have my breakfast and lunch all week though - I have been SUPER bad about grabbing something from a fast food joint for both meals for weeks now and my waistline is starting to show it.

I also did some weeding in the veggie garden and did a bit of fall decorating outdoors. More to do, but at least it felt like fall while I was doing it today.

Here are the two recipes for the crock pot dishes. 

Crock Pot Love Pork Tenderloin

Ingredients: 1 2-lb pork tenderloin (I used a pork roast because it's what I had in the freezer), 1 1-oz envelope of dry onion soup mix, 1 cup water, 3/4 cup red wine, 3 tbsp minced garlic, 3 tbsp soy sauce (go with 1T per pound of meat), freshly ground black pepper
Directions: Place pork tenderloin in a slow cooker with the contents of the soup packet. Pour water, wine, and soy sauce over the top, turning the pork to coat. Carefully spread garlic over the pork, leaving as much on top of the roast during cooking as possible. Sprinkle with pepper, cover, and cook on low setting for 4 hours. Serve with cooking liquid on the side as au jus.

Sour Cream and Bacon Crock Pot Chicken 

Serves: 8
  • 8 bacon slices
  • 8 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I used tenders)
  • 2 (10 oz) cans roasted garlic cream of mushroom soup (I used 1 reg cr of mushroom and 1 cr of chicken because it's what was in the pantry)
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • ½ cup flour (all purpose or gluten free blend) (I used xanthan gum to thicken the sauce as we are doing most meals low carb at the Paisley Cottage these days)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Place the bacon in a large skillet and cook over medium-low heat until some of the fat is rendered. Be sure that the bacon is still pliable and not crisp. Drain on paper towels. If you use this method, reduce the flour to ¼ cup. Or don't cook the bacon and proceed with the recipe.
  2. Then wrap one slice of bacon around each boneless chicken breast and place in a 4-5 quart crock pot.
  3. In medium bowl, combine condensed soups, sour cream, and flour and mix with wire whisk to blend. Pour over chicken.
  4. Cover crock pot and cook on low for 6-8 hours until chicken and bacon are thoroughly cooked. You may want to remove the chicken and beat the sauce with a wire whisk so it is very well blended.
  5. Pour sauce over chicken.
  6. If you have a newer crock pot, check the chicken at 5 hours. The internal temp should be 160 -170 degrees F.
Serve over rice, couscous, or wide egg noodles. **Gluten Free** Check labels. You can buy gluten free Cream of mushroom soup although many brands are not.