Thursday, May 17, 2012

What we eat

I should just mention that while TR is away we eat awful!  Half the time I forget to make supper until 5pm.  We're so busy playing outside and I have not been taking meat out in the morning.  This evening we had mango smoothie and chips with cheese (I also had salsa but the kids don't like it).  Not exactly a square meal, but it did the trick.  Benjamin also had a peanut butter and honey sandwich.

Mango Smoothie
~ Frozen mango pieces, slightly thawed 
(I had mine on the counter for about 30 minutes)
~ Pineapple juice
~ Yogurt or cream (or both :)
Blend all ingredients together. (I use a food processor 
but I'm guessing a blender would work)
  Eat with a spoon and enjoy :)

Depending on how frozen your fruit is will depend on
how much liquid you need to add.  I don't like doing
lots of juice, but a little does help thin it out a little.  
We always like eating it with a spoon, but if you
like to drink it you'll need to add more liquid.  
Last fall I bought cases of mangoes and cut
them up and froze them so we've been 
enjoying this smoothie over the winter.  

When he's away

When TR was first diagnosed with colitis I was very afraid of what would happen if he had to be away for a while.  His job actually wasn't going very well at the time and he was seriously considering another job.  He looked around a lot - sent off resumes - we borrowed the paper every week and scoured the ads.  He considered jobs that weren't really what he wanted but would be better than where he was.  Very briefly he thought about a job that was on a rotation schedule - you know, in camp for 2 weeks, home for 1 (or something like that).  But the thought of him living on camp food was enough to squelch that idea (thank goodness!!!)

Thankfully over the last couple years he has become much healthier and he's also learned a little about which foods will make things worse very quickly.  Once this month is over he will have been away for 20 days (10 at a time).  The first time he left he really didn't take much food with him as he had no idea where he was staying.  And so thankfully he really did awesome!!!  The place he was eating his lunches at was very homemade and pretty safe and for suppers he alternated between buying a few groceries and cooking himself and eating out.  You know your husband loves you when he resists buying grocery store meat and eating his spaghetti without ground beef just because he knows how you would feel about that meat! That is love friends :)  And it totally made my day!

When he left the second time he knew where he would be staying and how he could cook so we packed up some food for him.  He is still eating his lunches at the same place but now he is making his suppers.  Here's a bit of what we packed him:
  • chili
  • hamburgers
  • steak and potatoes
  • cooked ground beef for spaghetti & tacos
  • canned chicken
So now he can have meat with his meals and not feel bad about it.  Most of these are quick meals as he gets off work 6-7ish.  

Sunday, May 13, 2012

What about wiener roasts?

I tell you, summer makes eating healthy even harder.  There are more get-togethers, wiener roasts, campfires (with marshmallows), picnics etc.  And all of them involve quick, easy, pick-up-from-the-grocery-store convenience foods.  Foods that are filled with all the things we try so hard to stay away from.  So what do we do?

Well, last summer felt very difficult.  We didn't go to very many campfires with other people.  We didn't go on many picnics.  We tried desperately not to eat hotdogs or marshmallows.

In a lot of ways it is much easier for me than for TR and the kids.  And in other ways it is much harder for me.  Easier because I never really liked marshmallows and they just love them.  TR used to eat handfuls of the small ones as a snack.  It's hard on the kids because they want to eat all the food they see other people eating.  They want the pop, the chips, the sugary treats, hotdogs filled with who-knows-what - and the white bleached bun that goes with it.   I know why we're eating different.  All they see are the things they can't have that their cousins are enjoying.  It's harder for me because bringing the healthier food takes more work.  It takes more time.  It takes a little more planning and forethought. 

Here are a few things that I'm hoping will make this summer easier than last:
  • There is a company now making "Natural" hotdogs.  They are still made with pork (which we avoid as best we can) and it's not organic.  But it is better and so I feel a little better about my family eating them.  I don't want to be bringing these to every picnic, but at least it is an option now.  
  • I've discovered that my kids like canned chicken and mayo sandwiches - which is a quick easy thing to make when we decide last minute to have lunch at the park (which we did about 2 weeks ago.  It was so great!)  
  • I've become a little more relaxed about some things.  TR is doing so much better this year and it makes it easier to treat ourselves to the convenience foods once in a while.  
  • I've discovered they now make Organic chocolate fudge cookies!  We had some on our vacation and the kids love them.  Still not the best but if we're going to have a treat, it's nice it's organic.  
  • I'm hoping to sit down and make a list of some things I can do in advance to make spur of the moment outings easier.  If I'm prepared with what we can eat on a picnic I'm sure if will be healthier than if I just wait until TR comes home and says "so and so wants to go".  If I do this it will make things so much easier and less stressful.
 Some of the things we did last summer that worked okay was cutting up fruit and taking it along in a container, cooking chicken or steak, or hamburgers instead of hotdogs, bringing juice instead of pop (my kids think juice boxes is the best treat EVER), I try to bring a homemade snack that they like - maybe a cookie or something.   These things still don't satisfy that whole stick over the fire though.  Last summer I really wanted to do bannock, but we never did get around to making it.  I thought that bannock might help when we just feel like roasting over an open fire.  We have a sandwich iron which we used to use a lot.  I would make pizza filling and can it and it would be easy to just grab a jar of that and some bread and go.  But that filling is just filled with meat we shouldn't be eating.  We tried making it more naturally but it just didn't cut it.  (usually it has salami, pepperoni, ham - all pork!) I've been brainstorming some ideas of what we could do now in the iron but haven't come up with anything too exciting yet.  Maybe this summer we'll figure out another sandwich that would taste great in there.    

So once I have my ideas for menus we can take on the go I will try to share them with you!  Summer is so fun and short and we all just love campfires and cooking over the fire.  If you have any ideas please let me know!