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TGIFwithKelmember since September 2009

March 9, 2012, 8:57 am

TGIF with Kel 3/9/2012: That's My Story and I am Stickin' to It

Work has been insane of late.

Pete, my manager, is able to recognize this. Having a manager that actually cares about one’s sanity, as well as the amount of work getting done, is a very very good thing.

Yesterday, Pete shared with us this video. The video is kind of an informercial for a seminar, but you can take a lot away from the few minutes presented here.

It gave me a great deal to think about last night.

For me, I have some goals I would like to achieve. I am not just referring to the goals of remaining healthy, but some goals of things I would like to accomplish. A change of careers and direction, if you will. There will be a great deal of conflict and challenges in getting to the next career chapter in my life; recognizing that it does not have to be angst ridden but fun is huge for me. Thanks Pete!

I was thinking about how my life might look on the big screen. Were there parts that people would want to fast forward through, or would they already be asleep?

For whatever reason, my thoughts turned to food. Okay, the reason was I was thinking about this as I was headed home from work; I was hungry.

How many movies have scenes where food is one of the characters in the movie? I thought about Eat, Pray, Love and Julia Roberts enjoying platefuls of pasta. Julie &Julia clearly would have been a different movie if the ultimate item Julie was attempting to prepare was a grilled cheese.

Would any romantic comedy be worthwhile if, after an awkward tryst between the main characters, they got up and had egg beaters and turkey bacon with dry wheat toast? Would Daryl Hannah in Splash! have been funny if they showed her biting into a Fiber One bar with the wrapper still on?

Is food a character in your story? Would you want to fast forward past it or enjoy it along with the rest of the characters?

For 40 some-odd years, I was in fast forward. In every effort I made to lose weight, the food choices were far from spectacular. One of the items that makes me cringe the most was the Nutrisystem hamburger. I am not certain what it was really made out of, but it was a freeze-dried piece of cardboard. You had to pour boiling water over it to rehydrate. That was your burger. Enjoy.


Those were the days that I tried to convince myself that the way to thin-ness was by repeating mantras such as Nothing tastes as good as thin feels and Eat to Live, Don’t Live to Eat.

What hogwash.

The more I tried to convince myself that boiled chicken and steamed broccoli were the way to live, the fatter I got. It obviously was not the chicken and broccoli that were at fault; such deprivation was simply not sustainable. The characters that appeared when I stopped eating the chicken were the issue. You may know their names ; Little Debbie, Klondike, and Mr. McDonald himself. You then convince yourself that the Lean Cuisine version of Rigatoni with Broccoli and Chicken really is delicious, and something you can eat for the rest of your life.


As I thought about the food characters in my life, it pleased me to realize that now that I have learned to eat real, whole food, this is a time where there is no need for the fast forward button.

As I stood in my kitchen last night and examined the contents of my refrigerator, Eat, Pray, Love still playing in my mind, I decided to eat, and cook, like an Italian.

I was dining solo last night, Ben working late on a project. My thoughts usually turn to an egg of some sort (of course) when I am alone as it is easy to prepare for just one. Not tonight, however; I had other plans.

I grabbed baby spinach, romano cheese, half an avocado, a lemon and a package of mushroom ravioli from the refrigerator.

From the pantry I grabbed some walnuts and olive oil.

I pictured myself as some famous chef on a cooking show, and how they might eat when the lights and cameras are off. Giada came to mind, naturally.

Onto the stove in a small frying pan went the walnuts, just to toast. When it comes to nuts, don’t set them on high, and do not turn your back! Just as the aroma of the nuts starts to hit your nose, I remove the pan from the heat.

I set my large pasta pot on the stove with water to boil.

To my food processor, I added 100 grams of spinach, the avocado, 1/4 cup romano cheese, the walnuts (60 grams of them), and a squeeze of lemon juice. I turned it on and let whirrrrr away.

I added about a tablespoonful of olive oil as it blended. I stopped, took a taste, and while I enjoyed the creaminess, it needed something. I grabbed old faithful – red pepper flakes – and added a pinch, along with a pinch of salt.


Once cooked, I put my ravioli in a bowl, and topped with two hearty tablespoons of my spinach/avocado pesto and a spoonful of the pasta water to make a sauce. I did not need the American sized plate of pasta to enjoy this.

SO good. SO rich. SO creamy. And SO good for you.

I did not create a recipe, but simply did the best I could to estimate the portions in my log. When I was done, the results were all green for the day. You can, indeed Live to Eat. My story is so much more than just fueling my body; I must make choices that are pleasing to the eye and the palate.

At the end of this day’s story, I had made something new, delicious, and I had a blast doing it.

We often talk here about being on a journey; from now on, I am going to think about it as the story I am writing.

Your food choices can be characters in the amazing story You are writing.

Enjoy the conflicts, and create a dazzling outcome.

I will be the story of someone that once was not healthy, and now IS healthy. Even while eating a cookie once in a while.

Eat like you mean it; and write an amazing story as you do it.

Thank Goodness It’s Friday!

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