Goodbye September and Whole30

September 30, 2013 at 4:41 pm

Today is the 30th day of my Whole30! The last day! Woohoo! I did it. As far as I know I was totally compliant the whole time. Well, still have half of today to go, but whatever. I did not weigh myself at the beginning of this whole30 so I don’t know how much weight I lost. However, I am very happy because all of my fat clothes, which were tight when I started, are now loose. Don’t you hate when your fat clothes are tight? That’s the worst. I feel great and very detoxed.

My plan is to forge ahead tomorrow with a basic NSNG (no sugar, no grains) approach. Naturally occurring sugars such as those found in fruit and dairy are fine. I will, however, be mindful not to overindulge in either. And I think I’ll be fine with that. I don’t eat or crave that much fruit anyway. I’m going to start by reintroducing dairy slowly and see how I do with that. I’m starting with heavy whipping cream in my coffee in the morning. If I feel like it’s making me crave sugar then I’ll re-evaluate. I think it will be fine, though. I’m staying optimistic that I can reincorporate dairy in a moderate way and be ok. I’m not always so good with “moderate” though, so we’ll see.

So what has happened in my fascinating life since I last overshared…last Thursday?

That day I met with the awesome ladies behind Molly and the Hoola Monsters, a new kids’ DVD soon to be released starring MY friend Molly. Here’s a little preview:


They are having a FREE premiere screening at Sunken Gardens on Sunday, October 20th. They will also have hooping demonstrations, treats, and all of the cast of characters will be there. Click HERE to RSVP and get more information (or let me know if I need to send you an invite…but it’s open to the public!). We’ll be there to cheer Molly and her friends on!

Later that afternoon I had great parking karma at Publix.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-1

I ended up having a late lunch and wasn’t very hungry Friday night so this was my dinner:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-2

Chewie knows when fruits and vegetables are being prepared that he is going to get a bite.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-51

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-3

Friday morning Mack, Chewie, and I walked to school.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-4

Friday breakfast:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-5

Friday afternoon, lots of decorative gourds at Fresh Market.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-6

Also Applegate Farms organic hot dogs on sale until October 8th.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-7

Interestingly I posted that picture on Facebook and about half of the comments were, “Whoa, that’s crazy expensive” and half were, “Wow, that’s a great deal.” I guess it’s all relative. Apparently even the regular price on these at Fresh Market is less than at Publix (and about the same as Target).

Friday night I made Cocoa Toasted Cauliflower.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-8

You can find the recipe here on Melissa Joulwan’s blog, The Clothes Make the Girl.

It may sound strange, but it was really delicious.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-9

The boys loved it and Chad said it was the best cauliflower he had ever had (and I make cauliflower fairly frequently).

Saturday breakfast:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-12

The star fruit is from a tree in my friend Debbie’s yard. She is my Annie’s Organics coordinator. She also has a big Florida avocado tree in her yard. We get bonuses in our shares from her yard!

I did some food prep on Saturday.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-11

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-50

Saturday dinner:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-13(that’s grilled chicken thighs and sweet potato with Moroccan dipping sauce, and a bunch of veggies sautéed and then smothered with Trader Joe’s marinara sauce…the whole30 compliant TJ’s marinara is the one that comes in a big can with a green label, not in a jar)

Sunday breakfast:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-14

Sunday morning the boys and I met my friend Ali and her daughter Molly (of Hoola Monster fame) at Artpool for an indie market.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-15

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-18

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-17

There were lots of Etsy sellers there.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-27

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-21

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-19

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-20

All kinds of handmade cuteness.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-22

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-23

I loved these tote bags, all made out of livestock feed bags.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-24

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-25

The craftsman told me that most of the bags come from feeding their own animals, but friends also save bags for them.

One of these catfish feed bags came home with me (I can’t resist a good aqua color).

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-26

They were only $7 and I wish I had bought another one as a gift. I have to say that they do sort of still smell like animal feed inside. I can live with it.

I also loved all this found-object art:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-29

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-33

Bicycle chain bracelets!

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-28

In the bicycle theme, I could not resist buying this adorable bunting for a friend (and she may be reading this and is guessing it’s for her and she’s right):

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-32

This artist/craftsman (em lee) had so many adorable applique objects…

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-31

This little pillow of hers also came home with me.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-42

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-41

Cal REALLY wanted this beat up suede trench coat…

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-30

but it was out of his price range so we had a discussion about delayed gratification. I hope I learned something from that discussion.

Mack and Molly both found something to buy:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-34(that’s a spyglass and a Bart Simpson, btw)

I also let both boys buy a novelty pack of gum.

Cal chose:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-39

Mack chose:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-40

Which is not true and is almost ironic since the only “bands” he’s seen in concert are The Wiggles, Hi-Five, Jack Hartmann, and Flo Rida at the Rock ‘n’ Roll St. Pete Half Marathon. And I may be old but I DID get to see all the cool bands. Or at least a bunch of them.

After shopping at the crafty fest we went up Central Ave. to Beak’s Old Florida for lunch.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-35

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-36

It pays to check in on Yelp at Beak’s. There is a BOGO first drink check-in offer on there. I had already used it the last time I was there because I am The Duchess!

Screenshot_2013-09-29-12-22-30

I got a burger with a house salad (no cheese) on the side with oil and vinegar. Then I removed the burger from the bun and plopped it on top of my salad.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-37

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-38

It was pretty tasty.

Dinner Sunday night:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-43

Chad roasted some salmon and on my piece he used the last of the Moroccan dipping sauce as a marinade (from the “Best Chicken You Will Ever Eat” recipe here). I used that sauce at about half a dozen meals. It’s a great recipe.

This morning Mack, Chewie, and I walked to school.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-44

When I got home I was in a hurry to get ready to go back to school to volunteer, so my LAST whole30 breakfast (for this time at least) was a quickie.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-45

OOTVD (outfit of the volunteering day):

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-46

20130930_094332-MOTION[3]

This top is from Gwynnie Bee, the “Netflix” for women’s clothing size 10 and up. Dang, that is dizzy-ing.

At school I put together the homework packets, as usual, among other things.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-48

School pictures!

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-47

I sat with Mack in the courtyard while he ate lunch.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-49

Then I went home and had my lunch.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-99

That’s two Applegate Farms organic hot dogs, sour kraut, and a chopped salad with lettuce, spinach, tomato, golden beets, grilled chicken thighs, bell pepper, avocado and a homemade mayo-based dressing. Kind of a mess, I know.

This afternoon has been mostly picking up and dropping off boys. They are at karate now. I need to go make my LAST whole30 dinner.

Don’t forget about the October Instagram Challenge that I’m co-hosting with the Tampa Bay Bloggers, sponsored by Parkesdale Farm Market starting tomorrow!

TBB Octogram edit jpg

Be sure to follow @parkesdale on Instagram and post a photo every day based on the daily photo prompts listed above. Use the hashtags #Octogram and #Parkesdale, and link up at the end of this post. You could be one of 12 winners of a $65 gift box from Parkesdale!

Disclaimer: This Instagram #Octogram #Parkesdale photo challenge is a sponsored collaborative effort between the Tampa Bay Bloggers and Parkesdale Farm Market.  Other than prizes to be awarded as giveaways for the Instagram photo challenge, the Tampa Bay Bloggers did not receive any compensation for this campaign.

Cya.

I guess it’s fall (Whole30, Day 26)

September 26, 2013 at 1:19 pm

It’s still been super hot and humid here in Tampa Bay, so it sure doesn’t feel like it, but apparently Sunday was the first day of fall. So happy fall ya’ll! And just like every year, I would like to share my favorite piece about fall. It gives me the warm fuzzies every time I read it. Click on the following image to enjoy this delightful little essay yourself:

decorativegourdseason

I have actually started with a little bit of fall decorating…just a couple of things in the dining room. I’ll do a “fall décor” post after the first of October maybe, once I have more fall things out. We have our eye on a big grim reaper to hang from the front porch. In the meantime, I do have some new flowers in the living room.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-33

Chad brought these home from the grocery store on Saturday. He notices when my vases are empty.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-31

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-32

And then I took a bunch more photos of the living room even though I know I’ve already put quite a few on the blog. This room feels so comfortable to me. I love it.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-30

Most of these photos are not so great because I have been doing pretty much all of my photo-taking with my phone lately. These were all shot indoors with relatively low light and no flash. So not so great. But I can hardly be bothered with the camera lately.

So I took this series of photos…

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-29

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-27

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-28

(and one more that I must have since deleted)…and Google+ automatically created this “auto awesome” panoramic:

20130924_112602-PANO(Maybe the photo will get bigger if you click on it? I’ll work on it.)

That is more what the room looks like to me (except the mantle is level and the floor lamp is not split down the middle). Like I said previously, I am obsessed with auto awesome. Look for an auto awesome GIF later in this post.

The boys received a tin full of muffins in the mail from Grandma Viv on Saturday. The note said, “Cody made these.”

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-1

Cody did a pretty good job! Thanks Grandma. Excuse Cal’s hair…he had just gotten out of the pool.

Saturday night we got a babysitter and headed out to the beach for a friends’ 40th birthday party.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-2

We never turn down an invitation to go to a party at this beautiful location:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-51

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-52

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-53

It was a lovely night.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-50

“Papa” the puppy (a Spanish water dog) kind of stole the show at the party.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-54

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-55

I have disguised the birthday boy so as not to jeopardize his WitSec status:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-56a

I will love these two forever…

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-57

Good party, even without any alcohol for me.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-58

Sunday breakfast:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-3

Sweet Potato Hash Browns: Grate 1/2 a sweet potato. Chop 1/2 an onion. Mix both in a bowl with one egg, and about 2 teaspoons of coconut flour. Season with salt/pepper/whatever you like. Add the coconut flour slowly until the mixture will hold together in a patty. Sauté small patties in coconut oil until both sides are brown and crispy.

Early in the afternoon on Sunday I went over to my friend Crystal’s house for a Benefit Cosmetics Lash Bash party.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-7

Playing with make-up with a bunch of cool girls? Sign me up.

Crystal had so much delicious-looking food laid out for us.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-6

OMG. These were cocktail sausages wrapped in prosciutto and sprinkled with brown sugar, and blood orange chocolate truffles:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-8

Here’s what I ate at the party:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-10

Ah well. I ate lunch before I went, so I was fine.

Also laid out for us were goodie bags full of samples of fabulous Benefit Cosmetics, and other sample Benefit products for us to play with.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-5

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-9

We ate and chatted, and then got down to the business of beautification. We were told to come with “naked eyes” so that we could do them there.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-11

Before and after:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-45

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-12

Throughout the party I kept trying to get a photo of Tequila, Crystal’s chihuahua, but he wanted nothing to do with me.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-13

Got you anyway Tequila! (best name ever for a chihuahua)

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-14

Thanks for inviting me Crystal! It was lots of fun.

When I got home I became obsessed with trying to get a good photo of my eyelashes with my cell phone. This resulted in many cross-eyed, wall-eyed, fish-eyed, and crazy-eyed photos.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-15

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-17

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-46

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-47

Chad found this whole spectacle highly amusing.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-16

After the Lash Bash party on Sunday afternoon, I picked up the boys and we ran all over north Pinellas County. We went to Old Navy to get hoodies for the boys and went into Barnes & Noble. Mack talked me into buying this book for him, although it is not for children and probably has inappropriate content.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-18

After our errands the boys and I went to Chipotle for dinner.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-19

This is probably my favorite Whole30 restaurant meal ever. It is a carnitas salad with salsa and guac (double meat).

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-20

No sugar, no grains! The carnitas (pork) is the only meat at Chipotle that is not cooked in soybean oil. So good.

On Monday I volunteered at Mack’s school. Here’s my OOTVD (outfit of the volunteering day)..GIF alert:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-4-MOTION[3]

Yes, that’s a very summery dress. Whatever. It still feels like summer here. Plus, you are allowed to dress like this year round in Florida. So shut up.

Homework packet preparation:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-21

Lunch with the sweet potato:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-22

My lunch, after I got home:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-23

Kind of sad, but yummy. Those are Applegate Farms organic hot dogs. #NSNG and whole30 compliant! At this point I really needed to do some food prep. Since I was running around all day on Sunday I didn’t have time to do it over the weekend.

Monday dinner:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-24(that’s oven-baked trout with smoked salt, and a sauce I improvised with homemade mayo, lemon juice, chives, garlic, parsley, paprika, salt, and pepper)

Tuesday morning I cooked a pan-full of beef bacon from U.S. Wellness Meats.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-25

They have all kinds of high-quality meat products, but they are pretty pricey. They also have a seven pound minimum order, so when I did order from them I got a variety of items. I had never had beef bacon before. It’s very different from pork bacon, but not bad.

Tuesday breakfast:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-26

The boys seemed to like the beef bacon more than me, especially Mack. I still have half of a package to cook, but I don’t think I’ll be ordering it again. Give me pork bacon!

Tuesday night for dinner I made another recipe out of Melissa Joulwan’s book Well Fed.

Moroccan Meatballs:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-34(you can find the recipe on her blog, The Clothes Make the Girl, here)

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-35

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-36

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-37

This was so amazingly delicious.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-38

I even had it for breakfast on Wednesday (yesterday):

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-40

It rained and rained and rained on Tuesday and Wednesday. I thought the house might float away.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-39

Our pool overflowed on its lower side. That’s one continuous plain of water across the lower pool deck and the pool. It wasn’t threatening the house, though, which is a couple of feet above that. We are actually at a very high point in the county now and not in a flood zone at all, so the chances of our house ever flooding are pretty slim. Of course the whole county could be under water if “the big one” ever hits.

Last night, in my apparent quest to make everything in the Well Fed cookbook, I made “The Best Chicken You Will Ever Eat.”

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-60

The recipe is here and that link includes the recipe for the delicious Moroccan dipping sauce that I drizzled over the chicken and my sweet potatoes.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-61

For the record, this was the second time in a week that my kids had Brussels sprouts and liked them (here I steamed them then sautéed them in a little bit of ghee with garlic salt). Winning.

Finally the sun came out this morning so Mack and Chewie and I walked to school.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-62

His school has a “walking school bus”.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-63

Love it. Other than having to cross two relatively busy streets, I am really growing to like our new walk-to-school route.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-64

Breakfast this morning included Moroccan meatballs once again and leftover Brussels sprouts.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-65

I know that my breakfasts are elaborate and beautiful. That’s why I love to photograph them. And eat them. I still have one serving of meatballs left and I’m going to kill them at lunch. That recipe is so good. We got a family dinner (not including Chad) and two breakfasts and two lunches for me out of it.

Now my stomach is growling. Need to go warm up some meatballs.

Cya.

p.s. Is it obvious that I have jumped on board the “No Sugar, No Grains” bandwagon big time? Here’s one reason why. This guy did a 21 day experiment eating 5,000 calories a day on a high fat, low carb diet. His weight stayed fairly stable and his waist got smaller! Now he’s doing to the same experiment on a low fat, high carb diet (eating many processed foods, very much like the SAD…fitting acronym for the Standard American Diet). He’s on day 9 and has gained over 7 pounds!

1238349_591737404201912_1324453386_n

I am following his experiment daily. So fascinating. Check out the Smash the Fat Facebook Page here to find out more. In January he plans to do the experiment with a high carb, low fat diet but eating only natural carbs and no processed foods.

Basically I feel like my world has been turned upside down with regards to nutrition knowledge since I did the Whole30 the first time. Fat is good. Grains are bad. Even whole grains. Sugar is the devil. It is inflammatory and inflammation is the root of all evil. As far as cholesterol goes, I’m being re-educated in that regard too thanks to Cholesterol Clarity by Jimmy Moore and The Great Cholesterol Myth by Sinatra and Bowden. The scales have fallen from my eyes.