Sunday, November 30, 2008

How to eat a pomegranate

Today for lunch I had bean tostadas, and a pomegranate for dessert. The beans I made from scratch. Pito beans simmered in garlic, onion, chili pepper, cumin, and cilantro, and a dribble of apple cider vinegar to mellow the flavor. I love these beans. I mash them as they simmer in a cast iron skillet, so they have the appearance of refried beans without the addition of any oil. I spread them on a homemade tortilla purchased from a local grocer that sells them fresh like the tortillarias of Mexico that I remember. Of coure I freeze mine when I get them home because I don't use them fast enough, but in Mexico, everyone bought them fresh daily. I toast mine in the oven over a low heat until they are nice and crisp. I top the beans with shredded cheddar ( real cheese, not vegan- I haven't worked up the nerve to try it yet) and generous slices of ripe avocado, and then a dollop of salsa. The tostadas are simple and delicious. Even the kids don't notice they eating meat free. For dessert I cut a pomegranate into quarters. For those who have never eaten one- it is all seeds. Each seed is surrounded by a pocket of sweet juice. They look like little jewels, the color of rubies. As you chew the seeds, you release the juice into your mouth. After you've chewed until the juice is gone, you spit out the seeds. Cumbersome to eat, but worth the effort.

Food, glorious food

Fifth, I like food. I love to eat. My way around this? Eat good food. I lean toward vegetarian/veganism but still eat fish and seafood. Less meat and dairy, more veggies and whole grains. I'm loving trying new recipes and new ways of eating and new ways of thinking about food. I must observe certain limits, but I've come to think of it as an adventure. Not what I can't eat- but what new thing I can try. My philosophy is simply this- make the best choice from what is available to me. I won't be picky and I refuse to burden others with my lifestyle choices. If there are no vegetarian/vegan choices put in front of me- I'll simply choose the best of what is available to me. I'll also plan ahead to make sure I have some choices. I'll make my lunches at home and have nutritious snacks at the office. I'm redefining my relationship with food, and acknowledging what it can and cannot do. I'm learning to delight in a healthy well-thought out, intentional meal. Losing weight does not have to mean losing my delight with food- just renegotiating what is delightful.

Move that body..

Fourth, I actually like to exercise. I will try many new things, and keep but a few. The problem is these new activities must fit my life as it is now. My daily walks have gone by the wayside with winter fast approaching, and I'll resume them in the Spring. I must find something to take its place and stair climbing presents itself. I also like weight lifting, yoga, and filling my mornings with aerobic workout tapes. My current set of tapes is the beach body workout (even though a 'beach body' is not my goal). Hell, I'd settle for a kiddie pool in the backyard body! My exercise MUST be completed prior to 8am. After that my time belongs to others and I can't get it back. So my exercise regimen must fit in between 6 and 8 am. Preferably, I'd like something I can do in my house and not have to leave. Workout tapes, free weights, exercise ball, jump rope, stair climbing, and yoga tapes all work for me because I already own the equipment. I can remember a time I had nothing but a pair of sneakers and used them to start walking. I love walking, but not in the cold. I have a gym membership, but can't sneak in a time to use it- so my home regimen between 6 and 8 is it. In the evenings I'm dead weight and can't muster the energy for exercise after putting in a full day at work. Besides that time is devoted to kids and homework. So first thing in the morning is dedicated to working out, not sleeping in.

A temporary home

Third, I am not what you see. I am so much more. What can be seen is the limited view of me. I am not a body inhabited by a soul- I am a soul temporarily inhabiting this body. This view of the world sets me free. Free from the expectations and limiting beliefs of others. No one can define me. No one can set their limits upon me. I am not this body- I am so much more.

I am not old

Second, though I'm 46 years old- I am not old. I don't feel old on the inside of me. The outside does not tell the whole story. Inside, I am ageless or even very young. The inside of me, the part people can't see, still wears pigtails and weaves flower garlands and a sunny summer day. I refuse to think of myself as old. Aging is an illusion- belonging only to this world, this limited life. I know I am ageless and that I will go on forever, long after this life is done, and this body is laid to rest. And so I am not old. I can still learn and think and do and create and contemplate and lead a relevant life, because I am not old. I am not too old to be beautiful, or too old to lose weight, or too old to break bad habits and create good ones. Because- I am not old.

I feel pretty...

First off, I'm still pretty. I tell myself that all the time, and when I look in the mirror, that is what I see- a fat, but attractive woman. I get compliments all the time on my appearance- but I know it's because I believe it first. I'm pretty. Because I know this, I act as a pretty woman would. I purchase my clothes with care. I buy colors that suit my skin tone. I dress like a pretty woman would (notice I didn't say, like a skinny woman would- I dress my size). Things that are not necessarily expensive, but attractive on me make up my selections. I am well groomed and attend to the details. I may be fat, but I refuse to be sloppy and unkempt. I am a professional woman and believe its important that I look the part. So first off I am pretty. I accentuate the positive and work with what I've got TODAY. I want to look my best today, even as I hope for a smaller, more toned tomorrow.

Welcome to my online life

Welcome to my new blog. I've been trying to get it off the ground for weeks. It took a while to come up with a title that really resonated. This is my online weight loss journal-designed to get me from one point to another by tracking my progress. You are welcome to watch, and cheer from the sidelines. Mostly I'll be tracking my daily consumption, and exercise through clever prose and with spiritual insight. I like to do everything with flair, cause I'm a big girl, with a big life...