Do you ever create a meal that turns out especially good, to the point that you want to share it?
I did that for lunch today:
Get out a cookie sheet; set the oven to 325.
Now, peel beets and cut them into 1/4-inch slices.  (I call these “beet steaks,” especially if they are large ones.)
Next, cut onions  into slightly thicker pieces.
Then, summer squash – zuchini, crook-neck… About 1/4-inches thick is good.
Now for roma tomatoes:  Cut them in half.
Add any other vegies you want – garlic cloves (peeled, of course) peppers, Kohlrabi…
Rub everything but the tomatoes with a bit of oil.  I used olive; coconut would be interesting.
Sprinkle a little salt on everything.  Some garlic-herb seasoning is good on the summer squash.
Pop the cookie sheet into the oven and go do something else for about 25 minutes.
Then, put a thin slice of cheese on each tomato half.  I used smoked butterkase – YUMMM!

Give things another 15 minutes.  By then, all of the vegies should be tender.  Load up your plate; enjoy!

Variation:  I get this really good sausage.  Today, it was roasted red pepper and garlic.  I put it on the cooki sheet with everything else.

Now, for dessert, you can start apples  about 20 minutes before the other things.  Cut them in half, core them, brush a little butter on them; sprinkle them with cinnamon sugar and let them bake until tender.  I think a little vanilla yogurt or ice cream would go nicely on top.


As I considered writing this, I thought it would be fun to share a little of my philosophy when it comes to food, especially dieting.
When I was in college, I wrote an essay called, “Dieting; America’s Eating Habit.”  We get it from all sides!  Take weight off fast with this pill or plan; try this cleansing diet; give up…name it – carbs, cooked foods, proteins, fats… We have calorie counters, carb counters, charts of every size and kind… and so it goes.


Let me start by asking you a question:  Are you managing your weight because you love and appreciate yourself; or are you thinking you’ll like yourself better once you reach that goal?


Take a little friendly advice from me:  Learn to love and appreciate yourself first.  Trust me, I know:  I lived with Anorexia for a number of years.  It’s hard to imagine how someone who doesn’t quite weigh 100 pounds can think she’ll be better at 90… At the risk of over siplifying things a bit, self rejection and hatred are often at the root of this sort of belief.  I have been well for 25 years now.  During that time, I have followed plans to lose weight and have kept it off without relapsing.  The keys to my healing are God first; then, the development of real love for myself.  If you are hoping to like yourself better, once you are slimmer, take some time to find some acceptance and appreciation before you make your food and exercise plans.


Step #2 in this process is to choose an approach that responds to your unique needs.  I, for example, eat more frequently and significantly reduce the amount of sugar, since that is the thing that causes me to gain weight.  I have a real need for protein, so I start my day with a good breakfast that includes some form of this much-needed ingredient.


I do the same kind of planning with exercise.  The areas that need the most attention are stamina and flexibility.  I don’t do well with a lot of weight lifting; besides, I get that in my daily routine.  I also need exercise to be enjoyable and easy for me to do.


You might want to talk with your doctor or health care provider as you develop your plan, especially if you have some sort of medical condition and take meds.


If you want some ideas for food and exercise, check out my mood management plan on the page called, “Practical Tools.”


Whatever you do, make sure you take good, loving care of yourself without punishment.
Step #3:  Do it!  Set a “start date” and make sure you begin.  If you mess up one day, get up and back on your plan the next.  Don’t try to make up for your mistakes and mishaps; just start where you are and proceed from there.


An overlying attitude needs to be respect:  For yourself and for the process.  When you see progress, take time to enjoy it; when you have setbacks, step away for a moment, make adjustments, take a deep breath and move on.  Lay down any perfectionistic ideals or notions you have.  All aspects of self care are part of a life-long journey, including diet and exercise.


Enlist people who will encourage and support you.  Coach them if necessary.  You might have to set some boundaries with people who aren’t so helpful.  That’s okay.


In short, make all physical care part of loving yourself.  Live “from the inside out,” recognizing that you are a whole person – spirit, soul and body.  If you start with this, keep it central to your planning and activity; then end with this, you will find success!


Published by lifehelps

I am like a rich tapestry, full of texture and color. I'm a musician, composer, poet, gardener, homemaker and friend. I worked as anLCSW for 22 years; as a socialworker for 26 years all told. Before that, I was a rehabilitation teacher. My passion is to come alongside others; to empower and bless them. That is why you will find plenty of variety in my blog. Two very important things to know about me is that I am a life-long learner - An explorer and sojourner. I also belong to the Lord, before you get tweeked out: I am not saying I am "religious." There is a huge difference between all of the rules and empty practice that often gets associated with Christianity and the kind of life that comes from being in a relationship with the loving God. May you find encouragement, inspiration, insight, good ideas and a laugh or two as you read my posts and comments.

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