Tuesday, November 30, 2010

CFC Day Two: remember how good bread was?

 I woke up hungry and kind of empty/ headachy feeling, still trying to fight this sickness, so I ate a big breakfast.  An hour later, I felt much better. Skyler was better enough for a half day of school.  I left early to get her so she didn't get overtired. She seems to be over the worst of it; phew.

When I walked into Reed's school this morning, the whole place smelled like cinnamon rolls, which were baking in the kitchen for the kids' morning snack.  Very weak moment right there.  I really missed bread/ bagels today.  I assume that is because I usually eat a lot of bread and bagels and I love them so.

I do love that as I plan and eat my meals so deliberately, I feel like I'm being really kind and good to myself. 

Breakfast, 5:30 am:   2 eggs and 1/2 cup of oatmeal with a little maple syrup.  1 cup coffee with a little agave.

On the way to work, 6:45 am, I sipped on a smoothie:  orange/ carrot/ spinach/ blueberry/ banana.

Snack, 9:30:  almonds and pear.

Lunch:  Quinoa Salad, clementine.

After school:  Rice cakes with almond butter, banana slices and agave and green tea.

Dinner:  Spinach salad with lemon and olive oil and two Black Bean Burgers.

Snack:  popcorn with some salt.

The Black Bean Burgers were pretty good; I just made up a recipe. I combined 1 can of organic black beans, 1 egg, 1 sweet potato (cubed and boiled), 3/4 cup cooked quinoa, 1/2 a diced white onion,  some cumin, chili powder and salt and mashed it all up.

I just finished my 4th bottle of water, so 96 ounces.  That's not quite a gallon but it felt like all I could do today.  

I can't tell how I'm feeling in terms of the CFC because I'm kind of sick with a sore throat.  How are you guys feeling today?

Clean Food Bloggers! (loved reading everyone's report)

Stephani in Colorado, at limbo.
Jodi in Connecticut at Live Free and Run
Brooke in Arizona at Action Mama
Kirsten in Wisconsin at From Inside to Outside
Laura in Japan at Ichigone

Monday, November 29, 2010

CFC Day One: I feel cleaner already

Our day did not start out well.  When I woke Skyler up for school, she was feverish and I knew that the sore throat and ear ache she'd been complaining about could not be ignored anymore.  It was stressful and Sam and I argued and I started my Clean Food Challenge with my emotions all in a frenzy and a sick kid.  I also had a sore throat and general achy body.  Awesome.

But then I went to work and got into a groove, drank my water, did deep breathing.

Keep Calm.  Carry On.

I decided that I might as well add in more patience and kindness to this Clean Food Challenge.  Here's to a healthier December in all kinds of ways.

Breakfast:  Oatmeal with a drizzle of maple syrup.  1 cup coffee with a little agave (really missed the creamy element here).  Smoothie with carrot juice, kale, banana, strawberries and ice.

Morning snack:  almonds, pear.

Lunch:  Quinoa Salad, tea, some grapes.

Afternoon snack:  rice cakes with almond butter and banana slices

Dinner:  big bowl of Curried Sweet Potato Soup and 2 plates of greens with this Japanese Peanut Salad Dressing that is amazing.  I substituted the sugar with 1/4 cup agave which was more than enough.

Overall, my eating day went great.  What was weird was in the after-school hours when I'm usually constantly snacking, I really wasn't hungry, even though I kept asking myself:  "Are you sure you aren't hungry?"  I did prepare tortellini for my kids and a platter of cheese and crackers for Lila and Joe, and I had to stop myself several times from automatically helping myself, but I stayed true to the plan.  My only struggle today was getting enough water.  I think I drank a little over half of what I should be drinking, so we'll see if I can get more tomorrow.

We just said good bye to Lila and Joe after a great visit with them.  I'm off to bed and hoping for a healthy Skyler in the morning.

Here is SARAH's take on Day 1:
I woke up at 5:45am and drank 2 glasses of water which I never do.  So good to rinse out in the morning!  I DID drink coffee but just one cup, with a tablespoon of soy milk.  For breakfast: huge salad with balsamic vinegar dressing and apple slices and almond butter.  For snack: rice cake with almond butter and honey.  lunch was leftover turkey, cranberries, and another big salad with olive oil and salt.  I plan to have a snack this afternoon of salted avocado and red pepper slices, and maybe some almonds.  dinner is turkey rice soup and baked sweet potato.

I  feel good so far, but it's only been 8 hours. In order for me to get in a gallon of water/day, I need to d
o several "guzzle" sessions which makes me feel like I'm back in college pounding beer.  har har!!!

Other Clean Food Challenge Participants Blogging (leave a comment if you want to be added to this list that I'll post daily)

Jodi in Connecticut at Live Free and Run
Brooke in Arizona at Action Mama
Kirsten in Wisconsin at From Inside to Outside
Laura, my former student who now teaches in Japan, at Ichigone

Good work, team!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Clean Food Challenge, ready for day 1

 Okay, so I'm feeling very organized right now, but we'll see how long I can maintain being this on-top-of-it.  I have the first few days pretty well set.

I made a double batch of this
Quinoa Roasted Carrot Salad for 2 lunches plus a side for 1 dinner (it's really good, recipe below, thanks to Susan).

I also made a double batch of Curried Sweet Potato Soup that will give me a few meals  (I did not use the milk).

 I took one bag of almonds and drizzled them with about a tablespoon of pure maple syrup, sprinkled with olive oil, salt and pepper and roasted them in the oven for 20 minutes.  This will serve as snacks for the week, and from where I'm sitting right now, I think this will satisfy a sweet craving.  We'll just see about that. 

And here is my lunch for tomorrow.  Not pictured is about 1.5 cups of the Quinoa Salad.

Apple, pear, grapes, almonds,

2 rice cakes (the only ingredients were organic pop corn, puffed rice and sea salt) with almond butter and banana slices for a snack.

Green Tea
Liver DeTox Tea


I feel really good about this meal!

I'll let you know how it goes, and you should too!  If you are joining us (Laura and Katherine joined too, which I think brings us to 15?)  you can post your thoughts and ideas in the comment section or on facebook.  Also, if you are blogging about it too, post a link to your blog in the comment section.

In case you missed the conversation about eggs, we have decided that eggs, peanuts, strawberries and citrus were on the NO list because they are allergens, and some people use these cleanses to eliminate possible allergens and then introduce them  again slowly.  So, if you are sure you aren't allergic to any of these things, as I am, you should feel free to eat them this week.

I feel like I should add a disclaimer that you shouldn't do this cleanse unless you are healthy, and that you might lose some weight, so if you have no weight to lose, you should not eat fewer calories than you already do, and also that I have never done this before.  You know that, right? 

Good luck, everyone, and thank you for doing this with me!

Moroccoan Roasted Carrot and Quinoa Salad
                                                                                4 servings

4 large carrots (peeled and sliced)
3 T olive oil
1 T Moroccan spice blend
½ c red quinoa
½ c white quinoa
2 c water
2 t Moroccan spice blend
1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
¼ c diced red onion
¼ c raisins
¼ c toasted pine nuts
1 handful of parsley chopped
1 lemon (zest and juice)
S&P to taste

Toss carrots in 1 T olive oil with 1 T spices.  Toss chickpeas with oil.  Roast both at 400 about 20-30 mins, until tender, turning once.  Simmer quinoa in water along with 2 t spices until water is absorbed, about 20 mins.  Mix carrots, quinoa, chickpeas, onions, raisins, pine nuts and parsley in bowl.  Mix 1 T olive oil, lemon juice and zest, S&P together then toss salad with dressing.

Moroccan Spice Blend
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper

1. Mix Everything.

getting ready!

We have shopped for everything we need for the Clean Food Challenge.  Skyler and Sam took Lila and Joe to Rockland to the Farnsworth Museum today, and Reed got to have a special shopping and cooking day with me. 

I have some recipes and other planning ideas that I'll work on later. Right now I'm surrounded by piles of groceries and trying to start some cooking while also organizing lunches for the week while keeping Reed busy with helping projects.  

Sarah posted her eating plan in a comment in the post below, and she has some great ideas too, so check it out. 

We did most of our shopping at our regular grocery store and did the rest at The Natural Living Center, our local health food store.  We bought mostly organic, but not totally.  I tried not to spend much more than I usually do in a week.   I'll be back soon!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thanksgiving weekend.

Cheers!  Sam's parents are visiting us for the week and we shared a delicious Thanksgiving feast, mostly prepared by Sam.   We had a fairly traditional meal, the only addition was that I made a  cornbread stuffing with fennel, red pepper and andouille sausage.  Sam wanted his traditional turkey stuffing too, so we made both and had a "best stuffing" contest. Sam and I canceled each other out in the voting and the Manharts kept avoiding my "which do you like better?" question, so in conclusion, I won!  It was so good, and so was everything else.

Friday we did not go shopping!  I actually cannot think of anything less fun than going shopping on Black Friday.  I always strive to complete my Christmas shopping without going to the mall, and this year I'll do the same.  Lila, Sam's mom, Skyler and I had our nails done instead.

  Lila had a pedicure while Skyler and I had manicures, Skyler's first ever.

The color?  purple glitter, of course.

Meanwhile, we got a light dusting of snow.

Just enough snow to get the kids outside and realize that we don't have boots that fit either of them nor snow pants that fit Skyler, so we threw these outfits together.  Time to head to LL Bean.
 Today we took the crew to the beautiful University of Maine Rec Center for swimming (and running first for me).

Hello, blue eyes.

Lila decided to stay dry with her book while Skyler posed for the camera and Reed barely kept his bathing suit up.

Look at the Manhart men looking on from the hot tub.  I love this place, and I stayed most of the time soaking in the hot tub looking out at the snowy forest scene outside. 

And because Susan knows my love for documenting everything, she counted and photographed the food donations collected at the Turkey Trek before dropping them off.  335!
Tomorrow I am shopping and prepping for the Clean Food Challenge and I'm feeling very ready after this weekend of food overload. I plan to post about my preparation tomorrow night.  Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

4th Annual Turkey Trek: look at us now!

The Turkey Trek continues to grow each year, and even though it was in the 20s this morning, we had a beautiful day and a great turn out and I am so thankful for everyone's support. 

It's so great to see some of the same folks coming year after year, and to see new faces that hear about it from friends, and to have students there (who helped me so much today!) and former students home from college.  For me it feels like a giant love fest and I never get enough face time with everyone that I want to talk to.

The food donations were crazy generous, and they are all piled in the back of Susan's van, so I didn't get a count, but I know that most people came in with multiple items and many had grocery bags full of of food.  We'll bring it to Manna Ministries tomorrow.

Once again, look at how our Turkey Trek has grown over the years:
2007:  11
2008: 35
2009: 70
2010: at least 115 (some people didn't sign in), plus lots of kids and dogs. 

My students/ former students (and friends) Marlee, Katy and Grace helped me sign people in, pass out maps, and took a bunch of photos, including lots of shots of people running, so I have a much better documentation of the day.  Thanks, girlies!  And thanks to Susan's family who manned the finish line and handed out prizes and cheered for all the finishers.  The three winners (didn't get their names!) took home the pies we made:  pecan, apple, and chocolate/ walnut.  Happy Thanksgiving to them!

Here I am giving everyone directions/ being bossy.

Here is an unorganized group shot, but there were too many people to get into one picture.
 On your mark, get set,

DOGS!  See Jackson?

The beautiful, sun-soaked trail.


 Roger, Rachel and Tom... what a great shot!

Meegan!  Look how happy everyone is.

Susan, my co-organizer, finishing strong.

Me, wearing 4 shirts.

 Well look who it is!  It's Will!  Not only is Will a Poetry Out Loud champion and a freshman at Harvard, he's also a wicked fast runner.  Some people just have it all. 
Love that Grace and Marlee (where did you go, Katy?) :)

People stood around for quite a long time drinking the coffee donated by Tim Hortons (which incorrectly does not have an apostrophe in its logo, but I'll let that go in the spirit of charity)  and all of the muffins, bread, granola bars and baklava baked by friends.  Then all the sweaty runners got very cold.  I was totally shivering as we got the last things cleaned up, and a hot shower never felt so good. 

Huge thank you again to everyone for coming and being so generous with food donations.  It was a wonderful way to start the day.  By the way, I'm blogging by the fire while Sam cooks Thanksgiving dinner.  Not bad at all.  Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Dining Room: Before and After

 This is kind of cheating because the before pictures look so bad, everything taken down and all the painting stuff out, but I like the dramatic effect. 

After all of the color samples, Sam picked the color when I couldn't decide.  He was pushing toward the terra cotta and I was pushing toward orange, though it's funny how many people have said:  "I'm glad you didn't paint your dining room orange!"  Where is the adventure, people?

But after seeing the new color up, I will say that although I wouldn't have picked it, it looks awesome and the color suits the house better, it's more classic, and it looks great with the pumpkin pine floors.  So, here you go!


AFTER:  The color is called "Masada" but Christine renamed it "Nutmeg" and I like that much better.

I don't know what I was thinking when I got these chairs with an off-white fabric.  And this is the table where we paint and do projects, so needless the say, the fabric was trashed.

For $6.00 of fabric, new chairs!  And I can change them again whenever I need to.

Home improvement projects really bring out the best in our marriage (sarcasm).  Hanging curtains at 10:00 the other night went like this:

Whoa.  Hey.

Also, we haven't gotten a new light fixture yet and we need to strip and refinish the table, but the room has a nice feel to it just in time for our Thanksgiving feast. 

Have a wonderful holiday, everyone, and I'll see many of you tomorrow morning at the Turkey Trek!