Wednesday, September 1, 2010

I joined a group that watches your weight last weekend. (Thus, no trademark or copyright infringement)

This summer, I found out that I'm diabetic, so I changed my eating/cooking habits. I already was on a low-fat, low-protein diet. I then added low-carb , smaller portions, and eating more often to the mix.

The pool season has been pretty good to me this year. I've been swimming about a mile a day. I'm up to 47 miles. Today will be mile 48. I checked, swimming that amount of time, at a slow to moderate rate burns 834 calories. You'd think with all those changes, I'd have lost weight. Not really. I lost 10 lbs the first week, and then - zip. I have toned up a lot, but no real weight loss.

So when Drama Daughter asked me to go to Watchers of Weight, I went, but with no great expectation of losing weight. It's only been a few days, so I can't talk about how WW has changed my life. Thus far, it made my weekly menu planning take twice as long as normal. I have tried some new recipes. Their portions are actually larger than what I've been eating.

Joining has made me think about some of the tricks I've learned to save calories, fat, protein, carbs, sanity, whatever. So:
favorite nutrition tricks
  • Instead of adding nuts to a recipe; add water chestnuts. Much less fat and protein, more vitamins, and you still get that crunch.
  • Instead of pasta or rice with a stir fry, use spaghetti squash. You still get the sense of pasta, with no fat or carbs, very few calories. I don't recommend using this with a nice marinara sauce. Not very good. Stir fry - excellent.
  • I make all my own broths/stocks: chicken, turkey, beef, veggie. I do recognize that making stock takes a lot of time. Except for veggie stock. It only takes an hour or so. But rather than buy veggies just for the purpose of making stock, we take the cuttings from all the veggies we use, store them in a big Baggie in the freezer. and use that for stock. Just save up a bag or two, add some salt and pepper, let it simmer for an hour, and - voila! Veggie stock. Almost any veggies will work. (I leave out ginger and hot peppers) Beets turn your stock a lovely red color. Skins, peelings, all of it. Very economical and very healthy.

I'm sure I'll add more, as they occur to me. Not that any of you really care, but the Handsome Hubby seems to feel that I should be posting these.

I'll let you know how WW goes.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

What's with things breaking

We have a cute little Mazda. I love our car. It's barely 5 years old and hasn't given us any trouble. Until now. A part broke. I don't really understand what it was, but it was the only piece of the engine that was made out of plastic. This particular piece was under a lot of literal pressure. So it broke. The only plastic part in the whole engine. Hmm. This part was only available at great expense from the dealer. Hmm.

We got it repaired for thousands less than the initial estimate, and the check engine light keeps coming on. We've gotten that fixed twice, now, but it keeps coming back. Figures. The car is almost paid for.

Not long ago, the handle to our dishwasher started falling off and being a real problem to open. We only latch it now when in use. The rest of the time, we hold it shut with a bungie cord. (Have I mentioned what an amazingly high class household we are?) My younger son, the Wookiee, looked into what part we need and where we could order it today. Guess what? It's back-ordered. Tells me that this part breaks a lot. Wouldn't surprise me if it was the only plastic part in the whole damned machine. I'm beginning to feel like we're all a part of some massive conspiracy on the part of manufacturers, plotting out which parts should fail first. I bet this part will only be available from the manufacturer, at great expense. When it comes in from back-order.

Just because I'm paranoid, doesn't mean they aren't out to get me.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

I've got a blog - now what do I do?

My husband has a blog, my daughter has a blog, why not me? You may think that I have nothing to say, and that may be true, but that doesn't mean I can't waste a lot of all of our times saying it.

Not long ago, I got back in touch with a friend from college. It was really cool. I think I'd have recognized her. And I've seen pictures of some people from college that I wouldn't recognize in the proverbial million years. I tried to get her caught up with the last 25 years of my life in 2 paragraphs, as you do on Facebook. (What I wrote) "The kids are almost grown up, out of 3 I still have one at home, but he's in college. I blew it the first time around, but the 2nd husband seems to be working out. We've been together for 21 years. I had an operatic career while we were in Germany. Now, I sing all over New Mexico, teach voice & piano, direct choirs, whatever pays the bills." She sent back that I'd had a busy and interesting life.

Actually, lately I've been feeling like my life was pretty boring and mundane. What have I really accomplished? What have I done? That kind of thing. And here comes this woman I haven't seen in a very long time, who thinks I must have an exciting life. Hmm. Let's see. Do we have money? Um, no. Are we happy? Yeah, I guess. Am I busy? Hoo boy. Like most working musicians, I work my posterior off, for very little cash. (I just wish I really was working my posterior off!) Is it exciting, interesting? Right now, I'm spending a lot of time working with high school kids, helping them to prepare for various competitions. This involves working on their Italian, pitch, timing, dynamics, and presentation. Some of them are really working and learning and audibly improving with each session. Yeah, I guess that is kind of exciting, even if I do get tired of the same songs over and over.

I'm helping to put on an opera in concert setting that has never been performed before. The music isn't grand opera, but has more of a celtic/folk feel to it. But it's good music, and we're going to be the first group to ever perform the work in its entirety. So, I guess that is pretty exciting, too.

Opera Unlimited is lining up performances for the school year. Hansel & Gretel goes back on the road in early Nov. (I'm the witch). We'll soon be back in the elementary schools all over the state, performing for the little kids, introducing them to opera. Some of those kids may go on to sing in a choir or a school show because they've seen us. Exciting.

Damn. Who knew?