Wednesday, June 26, 2013

A picture's worth a thousand words, no a thousand feelings

It's true. I just saw pictures from a wedding my family attended two weeks ago. I was stunned to see how big I am. You have an image of yourself in your head, but until you are actually forced to look at a real picture and face reality, that image stands. I don't feel obese. Well, I mean, I feel obese when I'm winded after walking my dog up the hill in our backyard. I feel obese when my jeans cut off the circulation to my gut. I feel obese when I can't get into yoga poses I used to be able to do with ease.  Otherwise I stick by the image of myself at 155 pounds. Ha, and can you believe I thought I was fat then?! I would KILL to be that weight right now. KILL.

And do you know what I did this morning, after viewing the wedding slideshow? I took a few of those wedding pictures, copied them to a Word document and circled the parts of my body I didn't like. I printed it, clipped it, folded the piece of paper up and stuck in my wallet. My thought being that if I'm debating between, let's say, baby carrots and cake, I'll reference the piece of paper with the fat pictures and chose the baby carrots. There's gotta be something wrong with this, but at this moment it's the best punishment I can come up with for how fat I am.

I'm about halfway through Big Brother by Lionel Shriver, and it's very appropriate right now because the two main characters are undertaking a radical diet. I'm so tired of diets and thinking about diets and considering diets. I just don't know what to do.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

In books: a recommendation

Good morning. No (notable) recipe to share with you today; a book/author recommendation instead. Lionel Shriver. A woman who's written quite a few books. I've read one, and am in the midst of reading her newest. Do yourself a favor and pick these up:

Kevin is very provocative, and has since been turned into a motion picture with Tilda Swinton. It's one of those novels that sends chills down your spine and makes you think hard about things, having children, in particular, and the whole nature vs. nurture argument.

Big Brother focuses on obesity in the family and how we tend to focus on it, deal with it or not deal with it. I find her writing to be so fluid, but still engaging. I'm not yet half way through but so far so good.

We have a big family wedding to attend this weekend, so we're leaving tomorrow for Pennsylvania--today is my Friday. Yahoo. I had a panic attack earlier in the week over the dress I'd been planning to wear. WOULD IT STILL FIT?? I bought it a month or two ago. And thanks be to god it still fits....and has sleeves, so no one will be subjected to my fat, white arms. I should get an extra piece of wedding cake for being so considerate, don't you think?

Ok, more next week. Read these books.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Good recipe, bad news

Well, I have a good recipe to share, but I also have some bad news (that directly impacts me, not to worry). Let's start with the good recipe:

Caprese Tarts (

1 large sheet puff pastry
All-purpose flour
1 fresh mozzarella, sliced
20 cherry tomatoes, sliced lengthwise
Salt and pepper
2 Tbsp olive oil
Fresh basil

  • Preheat oven to 375F.
  • Cut the pastry into 4 squares and roll it out to double size. Use a little flour so that the dough doesn’t stick to the surface.
  • Place each pastry on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Place mozzarella and tomatoes on top, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and drizzle with oil.
  • Bake until golden, about 12-15 minutes.
  • Remove from oven, serve hot or cold with fresh basil on top.
Here's a pic of how this turned out:

Delicious and easy, let me tell you. Now, since the puff pastry box comes with 2 sheets, I decided to throw caution to the wind and try different ingredients for the second tart. For this one, I used pre-baked chicken breast, cubed (I had that in the refrigerator to use on salads or just to gnaw on), red onion, chopped garlic, mozzarella, salt, pepper, and olive oil. I was trying to model California Pizza Kitchen's garlic-chicken pizza. And this option turned out just as good! Evidence:

So bottom line: make these for an afternoon snack or use as an appetizer for friends. I thought the tarte went perfectly well with a beer and a bad Lifetime movie!

Ok, onto the bad news. I had my annual physical yesterday. In addition to the appointment starting nearly an hour late, and then waiting another 15 minutes to have my blood and urine samples taken (so I was in a bad mood already), my doctor laid down the law, with this undertone: "Ellie, you're obese. It's time to do something about it." She gave me a piece of paper with food suggestions and menu ideas and told me I should restrict my calories to 1500 per day. Well sh*t, where has this piece of paper been all my life?! It's an easy plan; I shouldn't make fun. And I'm really going to try, but I'm an emotional eater. I know what I should and shouldn't eat. So for me it's, "Hmmm, I'm bored, let's have some cheese and crackers," instead of "Hmmm, I'm not hungry, I don't want dinner."  I downloaded a calorie counting app to my phone, so maybe that will do me some good. We'll see, I guess. I'm just glad I found this tart recipe (and made it and ate it) BEFORE yesterday's appointment!