Check in

So here we are. Almost done. Only two more weeks to go. And it’s starting to get hard. That’s not what we expected. Many of our predictions didn’t really happen:

  1. The beginning will be really hard! – not so much… it was actually much easier than we expected. We didn’t have to change too many of our eating habits and we actually discovered some really yummy alternatives.
  2. We will feel totally different! – not so much… although I have to say that the results from the first weeks are completely skewed because we were so sleep deprived. Ken insists that without the fast we would have felt even worse…
  3. Something wonderful and unexpected will happen because of the fast! – many wonderful things happen every day and continue to do so. Hard to tell if they are at all related to the fast.
  4. We will crave certain food items! – at the beginning: No. – Now: Yes! We are starting to crave food that has a more intense flavor. More salt, more sweet, more something. Hard to tell what exactly it is but things start to taste a little bit the same. My favorite things to have: A piece of dark chocolate and barbecue sauce (not together, though). Ken’s cravings: chocolate, potato chips, string cheese.
  5. We will have to cut the children some slack. – Not really. At the beginning I let Marlena eat “processed” crackers, for example, when we would get together with other kids and they would share.  I realized after a short while; however, that she truly didn’t care if I said, “No, let’s eat what I brought.” So I stopped making exceptions. It didn’t seem to bother her one bit.
  6. We will miss the “convenient” helpers in the kitchen! – Yes. There is one product I miss terribly…. Drum roll…. It’s PAM cooking spray. That’s sounds almost embarrassing but I hate buttering every baking dish. PAM will definitely come back into this kitchen!
  7. We will save some money. – I wish. We cut out a lot of food and that definitely saved some money. But we also added certain foods – and they were rather on the expensive side. For example, instead of other treats, we treated ourselves to special indulgencies, e.g. pure organic pear juice and organic cocoa powder… things that are rather expensive.
  8. This fast will lead to some long term changes. – Definitely. Hard to tell what exactly will happen and to what degree but our habits have changed so much that it is hard to imagine we would go back all the way. I doubt soda will ever find its way back into our kitchen, sugar and white flour will be sparse   (besides that dark chocolate…), we will continue to make our own stock, etc.

We are in the final sprint. I’m very curious what those last days are about to bring…


Keeping It Simple

I have a preference for simple food. I like to limit my ingredients and to see and taste everything that goes into a meal. I like to eat good food that has enough taste in itself and doesn’t need to be covered in a heavy sauce.

 I noticed, however, that I don’t seem to have a preference for simple thoughts. Quite to the contrary, I seem to get simple potatoes but sink them into a big pot of dark brown sauce. What am I trying to say here? I have a tendency to read into things. People are in a bad mood – I wonder if I did something wrong. People need to leave earlier than originally planned – I try to figure out if they didn’t want to spend more time with me. People don’t include me in an email – I guess they don’t want me to be part of it.

 As it turns out, ninety nine percent of the time, people are just in a bad mood and it has nothing to do with me. People need to leave early because they need to pick their kids up.  And they don’t include me in the email because they don’t want to clutter my mailbox with emails that are really not important to me.

 But why is it so difficult to just accept that something that looks like a potato and tastes like a potato might actually be a potato? Why do we sometimes read so much into things? I think one of the many answers is that simple is actually often harder to do. Cooking with fewer ingredients is often harder. Nothing can be covered up. Making sense of situations without all the contextual information is harder, too. But the question still remains. Why do we so often resort to think the answer has something to do with us. We wouldn’t blame ourselves if the potato we just bought turns out to be rotten or tasteless…

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