Thursday, February 25, 2016

Is it spring? Or does it just feel that way?

Beautiful scene from a webcam in Stanley, ID yesterday morning.
Hard to believe that it's around 3:30 in the afternoon on February 25 and I'm sitting in my room with the window wide open (all afternoon) dressed in my usual sweats, heat off, and I'm too warm! Memory says we always have some days like this in February, but this one seems particularly welcome. Nearby Wunderground station says it's 59.5 out there at the moment, but it seems far warmer. Sunny, no wind. Perfect day to be outside. I, of course, have not taken full advantage of that (somehow I never do these days!) but I have been out there a few times, walking around 'the block' and doing some chores. Loverly. Around the neighborhood on my walks I see lots of purple crocus and daffodils. Every now and then I get a whiff of some spectacularly perfumed plant but so far have been unable to find a flowering bush in any of the locations.

I don't know what's going on, but lately I seem to have more energy during the day than I know how to handle. Not complaining, as it's quite a welcome relief from the old lethargic status quo, but of course my mind wants to know why this is happening. Could be a lot of things: healthy food, enough exercise, fun things (my fermentation items) to fill my time, and yes -- even the loss of 20 pounds over the last year might also have something to do with it. I'd think that would be more psychological than physical, however, since this is something new and the weight loss has been slow and over a long period of time. Whatever it is, it's keeping me up and active most of the time.

All those scale fluctuations I talked about finally settled down into a nice lower number this week, including on weights and measures day yesterday, and was still lower today, rather than going back up. Hopefully, the downward trend will continue.

I took my last real carb, corn tortillas, out of the diet starting Sunday or Monday and that's when the scale started being my friend. I know I can't eat any kind of grains -- whether flour or, apparently, corn -- on a consistent basis without gaining weight, but since it was going down all year I thought the corn was maybe ok. Not! And that's ok. I can have them on occasion, but as with beer and wine and sugars and lots of other goodies, I'm happy to exclude them as long as I'm at such a low calorie intake, and settle on more nutritious foods. Not counting the occasional comfort food, such as the fish & chips last Saturday and the Newman's Own healthy pizza today, that is. Those help psychologically, and don't seem to hurt the waistline as long as I balance the calories the rest of the day.

Started an easy yoga class last Friday, will go again tomorrow. So beautifully relaxing! Not overly challenging, but still good for me. Meets at noon, which I don't like, but the alternative is evening and I really don't like that, so noon it is.  By Friday, my exercise energy has been fairly low so this is very welcome, while still giving me an hour of healthy exercise. Then, I crash all weekend!

Made some chicken stock for the freezer today. Every time I get a rotisserie chicken I save the carcass and all the bones/skin/whatever in the freezer for this purpose. It was starting to take up far too much room in there, so today seemed a good day to boil 'em down. Great for beans and soups.

Don't remember if I mentioned it, but a few weeks ago I got a bug in my bonnet to make some sriracha-style hot sauce. I expect that happened when I found out that the real sriracha is actually produced through fermentation. So -- bought the right kind of peppers, added a bunch of garlic and put it to ferment. That was almost two weeks ago. I moved it around from cooler to warmer spaces to see if I could see signs of fermentation, but no bubbles. My fermentation experts assure me that 'stuff is happening' whether or not there are bubbles. My point is that the stuff is in my room at the moment and it smells so good I can hardly stand it! Want to taste it so bad, but it has another 3 weeks left to ferment before it's ready. Aarrrrgggghhh!!

So that's my less-than-exciting life. It's working OK for me at the moment.

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