About Me

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2 time ovarian cancer Survivor, Advocate for ovarian cancer awareness & research, Teacher of Zen Method Tai Chi, Blogger, sharing the wonderment and power of essential oils, proud fan of Cathe Friedrich's workouts, Reiki practitoner, A Course in Miracles student, paper crafter

Friday, October 29, 2010

Experimental Food Blog

I made the broccoli soup yesterday and decided to pick up the camera to try out food blogging. Here goes!!

Broccoli Soup from Holly Clegg's Trim & Terrific (original) cookbook:

The Goods:
4 cups fresh broccoli florets
1/4 cup water
1 onion, chopped
2/3 cup all purpose flour (not shown)
1.5 cups skim milk
28 ounces fat free vegetable broth or chicken broth
1 cup shredded reduced-fat Monterey Jack cheese
salt and pepper to taste
1/8 tsp dried thyme

Cook broccoli in a microwave dish in the water, cover for 8- 10 minutes or until tender (mine were tender in 6 minutes). Drain and set aside.

In a large pot coated with cooking spray, saute the onion over medium heat until softened, about 3- 5 minutes.

Broccoli and onions are great cancer fighting foods!!

In a small bowl (or measuring cup) mix together the flour and milk.

Stir the flour and milk mixture into the onion. Gradually add the vegetable broth (impossible to photograph since I was home by myself) and the broccoli.

Stir to combine. Cook over medium heat until the mixture comes to a boil, stirring constantly *this is important!*, for about 5 minutes, or until thickened.

Transfer the soup to a food processor or blender, puree the soup, and return to the pot over low heat.

Three cheers for food processors!!!

Be careful!! Hold on to that blade! Don't let THIS happen to you! Okay, so it wasn't really that traumatic. I didn't hurt myself at all, but it was a pain to have to fish out the blade from the hot soup. Try to avoid it.

Add the cheese, salt, pepper (another cancer fighting food!), and thyme, cooking until heated through and the cheese is melted. Serve immediately. Or you can do what I did, leave it on low heat and stir it every few minutes until everyone is ready to eat.

Somehow I didn't get a picture of the final product. Bad food blogger, bad bad!! So here's a picture of the leftovers. It's a very yummy soup! Give it a try!

The nutritional info: Serves 6- 8.
Calories 121, Protein 9g, Carbs 15g, Fat 3g, Calories from fat 24%, Saturated fat 2g, Dietary Fiber 2g, Cholestrol 9mg, Sodium 576mg
Diabetic Exchanges (I love that Holly Clegg includes this!): 0.5 lean meat, 0.5 starch, 1.5 vegetable

Since I was in the kitchen anyway I decided to roast the squash for future use. The butternut squash is for the Butternut Squash Enchiladas that we'll eat for family dinner on Sunday (along with a Taco Pie for those members of the family who require meat). The acorn squash is for something else, but I'm not going to tell you what just yet. Hehehe!!

Oh winter squash you roast up sooo beautifully!!! 

Thursday, October 28, 2010

A Yummy Plan

I did one of my favorite things last night. I surrounded myself with issues of Clean Eating  and Eating Well magazines along with one of my favorite cookbooks Trim & Terrific by Holly Clegg and put together an eating plan for next week. I also ended up throwing in a Vegetarian Times  recipe that my Mom found last week.  After 2 hours I had a plan and felt that ol' familiar feeling of control over my eats. I like it a lot! 

The part I love the most about Clean Eating magazine is the chart of 2 weeks worth of meals and snacks in every single issue complete with a shopping list and nutritional info for each day. Isn't that awesome? It's simply brilliant!! It helps for planning, of course, and it also helps on days when my mind has gone blank and all I can think to eat for lunch requires mayonnaise. You can check out a free 7 Days of Clean Meals chart on their website, click on the menus and recipes tab.

On a side note, I do not receive ANY income or benefits whatsoever from the products I talk about in this blog. I'm just sharing my humble opinion.

My lifetime food goal is to eat more vegetables. I'd like to average at least 5 servings of veggies each week for right now. So, I'm always looking for recipes that include veggies and, therefore, find myself making all kinds of salads. I like my salads to have it all- whole grains, protein, just the right amount of healthy fat and vegetables. It's just easier for me to make whole-meal salads than to figure out how to make 3 different foods work together. Sometimes salads start out as one thing, and then transform into something else. That's a different post, though. 

The salad I chose for this week is called Merrill's Tuna Rice Salad from Clean Eating's Nov/Dec 2010 issue. It's a simple chop and mix recipe:
2 6oz cans of tuna, in water, drained
1 stalk of celery, chopped
3 green onions, chopped
1 jalapeƱo pepper, chopped (I'll probably only use 1/4 of a pepper thanks to chemo-induced heartburn)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 T lemon juice
1/2 tsp celery seed
1 T low-sodium soy sauce
2 T 100% apple juice concentrate
1 tsp dried basil
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
1 8oz can water chestnuts, drained and chopped
2 large carrots, grated
2 cups cooked brown rice, cold
1 tsp finely grated fresh ginger
2 T minced fresh parsley
Combine all the ingredients. Refrigerate several hours. Enjoy! Makes 7 one-cup servings. 

I'll also be making Butternut Squash Enchiladas and a Broccoli Soup recipe from Holly Clegg's original Trim & Terrific Cookbook. I've also got hard boiled eggs, non-hard-boiled eggs, oatmeal, raw carrots, apples, dried cranberries & blueberry mix, bananas (per my oncologist's orders), my favorite reduced fat lactose free yet somehow still delicious and rich tasting Cabot cheese, a couple cans of healthy low sodium soups, frozen green beans and spinach, natural peanut butter, frozen tilapia, walnuts, organic flaxseeds, nitrate free low sodium ham, and frozen organic chicken breasts to create a healthfully clean cancer cell killing week of eats. I'll be sharing how I put it all together next week. 

Do you have an eating strategy for next week? How many veggies servings do you average each week? How do you do it? Share with me!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Hairy Sprouts

Fight like a Girl!! I'm still doing just that, just in a new way now. My sister, Heidi, gave me this inspirational shirt last year. She's a member of the executive committee for BancorpSouth's Relay for Life team.  Every woman in my family has one, and we all wear it proudly. It's meant a lot to us this past year. I'll share a picture of one of this year's shirts in another post. Stay tuned, it's really really cute!

The front of the Fight Like a Girl shirt. From left to right, my Mom, my sister Sally, my sister Heidi and me. There's a funny glare on one of my front teeth, I assure you that it's NOT a gold tooth. 

My head is sprouting new hair! Yesterday it seemed like there was a little growth happening, but I wasn't really sure until this morning. My hair has started to grow back! Whoohoooo!! This picture doesn't do it justice, but it's not all that visible yet. So far it's coming in dark brown, but don't tell my nieces. They tell me it's purple and then laugh like crazy. 

Monday, October 25, 2010

Countdown Part I

In 6 days I will be healthy enough to start losing weight again, according to my oncologist. I’ve been looking forward to this for a long time! I’ve successfully lost weight in the past, so I know that planning and tracking work best for me. I love looking at charts, tracking my eats and exercise, and the numbers for each day. It gives me a sense of control and accomplishment, though I’ve learned that I can only control so much in weight loss, cancer treatment, and life.

This weight loss journey is different from ones in the past because this time I’m a cancer Survivor. My body has changed dramatically. Losing weight is not going to be easy right now and perhaps now isn’t the perfect time to dive in. I’ve debated putting it off until the end of November, or even January. The truth is that there is never a ‘perfect’ time to start losing weight. I have to start now, there’s an urgency inside me.

That urgency comes from a long held desire for stronger health and a stronger body. I want my body to be able to kill off any loose cancer cells that may be running around! So, those are going to be my main goals instead of focusing on the scale. Scales can be sneaky liars. I will use my tools of charts, food tracking, exercise DVDs, and water bottles to strengthen my health and kill cancer cells.. My favorite site to help me keep track of everything while providing motivation is SparkPeople. Also, I will use the eats guidelines from the book Anticancer: A New Way of Life by Dr. David Servan-Schreiber. That will be a powerful combination!!

This week I’ll be making plans, gathering recipes, designing a Cathe rotation, and updating my SparkPeople info so I’m armed and ready when Sunday rolls around!!

Share with me! Are you a Survivor who lost weight after treatment? Anyone who has lost weight, what’s your best piece of advice? What’s your favorite way to kill cancer cells?