My Kale Crush

As a writer, I follow a lot of writers on Instagram. They give me inspiration and I admire the dedication they have. It can be hard at times to keep writing and to keep submitting work when rejections seem to always follow. Some days are filled with writing and ideas while other days involve empty thoughts. I have self published before and undoubtedly I will again, but one day I would like someone else to say “YES! I need to publish this!” One day. Until then, I will just keep writing what I love. So thank you to all the writers I follow, you are amazing. Keep it up!

One of the things that really distracts me from writing is food. Yep, that is right. If I am not watching Top Chef, then I am on Pinterest looking at food ideas. I am obsessed with trying out at least one new recipe every week for my family. This week, I found a recipe for a Crockpot Thai Chicken Curry dish. Need I say more? I cannot wait to eat it!!!

But for now….I am cleaning up from our lunch today and making my lunch for tomorrow. I have to plan meals ahead of time. As a mother and a special education teacher, planning is a necessity. I am also trying a keto-ish way of eating so planning is a must. Check out my brand new Instagram page at @FunKetoLiving!

What is for lunch tomorrow? I am so glad you asked! A yummy kale salad!!!! I have a LOVE AFFAIR with kale. That’s right. I said it. I used to only like kale chips. I had tried to eat kale salads, but they were always disgusting. I mean…spit out disgusting.

Then, one day, I was flipping channels and I saw a PBS show about cooking. I thought it looked quite interesting so I decided to watch.

Ok. Ok. Truthfully, I was flipping channels a while ago and saw some totally cute farmer looking guy making yummy food so I had to watch. haha!

The show was called “The Farm” and the cute guy was actually Ian Knauer. I fell in love with the show and started following him on Instagram as well. What an inspiration. I wish I had his knowledge, but most of all I am just happy that I stopped to watch the cute guy on TV, because I saw him make an incredible kale salad, among other delicious things. After that episode, I tried one last time to make a kale salad that was edible. O.M.G. it worked!! It was delicious and I have been hooked every since.

Apparently, I just needed to send my love to kale (i.e. massage it with olive oil, salt and pepper if I want it that day, a little rest, and some yummy toppings, etc.) That’s it! Who knew! I haven’t converted my husband and son yet, but at least my son will eat up kale chips. Baby steps.

So while my best friend is drooling over Jason Momoa, I am drooling over Johnny Iuzzini and Ian Knauer. What can I say? I think being able to cook and bake is incredibly sexy and one day, Jason Momoa might not have his muscles, but I bet Johnny and Ian will still be able to whip up some damn tasty food.

Keep smiling! ❤ Jessica

Lazy Keto For The Win

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Like everyone else in the world on January 1st, I decided (yet again…for the 107th time) that I need to really, truly, for real this time, get as healthy as I can be.

I scoured the internet for days and days for diets that I could start that would be more of a lifestyle change versus just a way to lose weight. My problem is that I love sweets and I love to eat. I am not a protein shake twice a day gal. I am more of a pizza and beer gal with a side of nachos and fudge.

What you may or may not know is that I have Reactive Hypoglycemia. It isn’t true hypoglycemia and it isn’t true diabetes. However, if I eat too much sugar or carbs, then I feel horrible. My blood sugar goes crazy, I get moody, shaky, hot, hangry, etc. It can ruin the entire day because my body is just exhausted from not feeling well.

I have tried the South Beach Diet, which I really like, but it always felt too restrictive. I once tried the Whole 30, but it also felt too restrictive. Then I found Keto. I know what you are thinking…it is very restrictive as well. You are right. It is. Then it dawned on me. About time, since my middle name is Dawn.

I have been an idiot. I just need to form my own way of eating and just stick to it. I like how Keto focuses on low carbs but trying to get my carbs to 20 or less for an entire day is too restrictive for me right now if I want this to be a lifestyle change that I truly like.

So I decided to do a lazy Keto diet my style. Basically, I try to eat keto the best I can. But I stay 50 or less carbs a day and if I need to indulge some then I indulge, because life is short and eating a cheat meal or two during the weekend won’t be the end of the world. As I get better at eating healthy for my body, then the carb number will go down. It has usually been about 30 carbs a day. I have been feeling great, no hangry feelings, and I am enjoying finding new recipes to make.

My family had taco night just a few days ago. They had regular taco shells or soft burritos. I made my own shells using cheese. Pinterest is my best friend. I didn’t need to put extra cheese on my taco since my shell was my cheese. A little salsa, spinach, and avocado with my meat AND it was sooo delicious! Even more than regular!

Cheese Taco Shells!

I did AMAZING all week with my carb totals, calories, and exercise. Then the weekend came. I did great Friday and had “room” for a glass of wine. Saturday was a different story. I did great, but then we went out to eat for my husband’s birthday. My plan to not eat the sticky rice at the Thai restaurant quickly left my thoughts because the food was just that good.

Red curry chicken

Curry, coconut milk, chicken and bamboo shoots. Do I need to say more? At first, I felt bad that I cheated. Then, the next morning, I cheated again with sausage biscuits. Ugh, the guilt of being a cheat. I feel so dirty and ashamed. Then I remembered that this is my healthy lifestyle not a stupid diet that I hate. I make the rules and I can decide that a little cheating can actually be a good thing. Life is too short to feel bad about eating a yummy meal or two.

Just me.

So the moral of this story is to do what feels good for you. I am LOVING how great I felt this week with my Lazy Keto food. For example, a coworker is also on a diet. One day for lunch last week, I had those leftover tacos I had just talked about. She only had string cheese and yogurt. I felt bad that my meal was so much more yummier than hers, but I think her main goal is to lose weight. Mine is to yes lose weight, but also to stop being hangry and get my reactive hypoglycemia under control. My goal is also to eat as much yummy food as I can! haha!

I am going to keep up with my lazy keto way of eating and my exercising. Oh! I haven’t told you what I do for exercise! I need to! (Hint…an upcoming blog post!)

Keep Smiling! ❤ Jessica

Time to Write a Novel??

woman writing on a notebook beside teacup and tablet computer
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In just a few days, November will be here. To be that means NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month)!! It is the one month of the year where I, and many many others, try to write 50,000 words in just one month. Some of us are successful; some of us are not and that is ok. This is my sixth year doing NaNoWriMo. I am not going to stress out if I don’t make the word count, because my goal is just to regain my creative juices and write on a schedule.

person writing on white book
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Planning is usually my downfall. I want to be a planner so I try and try each year to write what I had planned for NaNoWriMo, but it just doesn’t work out. My characters do as they damn please. So this year, I am not going to plan. I am going to write and let the characters run with it.  We will see. I am hopeful and excited to see what comes of it.

It has been hard to stay on a writing schedule lately. I have been letting my personal life interfere. Dealing with my mother’s Alzheimer’s has seemed to take over my thoughts and feelings. Perhaps writing can be a form of therapy for me instead of something I put off because I am just not in the mood to write? Maybe NaNoWriMo can help me get out of this funk?

I am looking forward to having a goal to work towards, talking with fellow writers about their imagination, and making time for myself to just write.

Good luck to everyone!!

at the end of a day
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