gluten free brownie

Funks and Ruts and New Beginnings

It’s been no secret I’ve been in a funk, probably since October but if I was entirely honest I’d say it started when Michael got laid off a year and a half ago. That was a tough 10 months but we got through it and his new job (since last September) is going great!

I recently said I got a temporary promotion at my job. I have to say it’s a lot of mixed emotions. 1) I’m stressed because I’m doing something new and I want to do a good job. 2) I felt an instant sense of relief stepping away from my previous job duties and responsibilities. 3) My new job has renewed my passion for what I do. I LIKE what I do again!

It’s a good feeling to not have dread. But since I’m still learning and feeling very fish-on-dry-land, I’ve come home feeling like a sloth. I still worked out but the second I got home I sat in front of the TV. For hours. And I definitely did some stress eating.

Weight Lifting & Running 3/4 mile
Weight Lifting & Running 3/4 mile

My dinners have been healthy and portion controlled. One night we had blackened salmon with steamed broccoli and raw peppers. The next night I made honey mustard chicken breasts and ate half the breast with satueed squash from the yard and more peppers. All healthy! Both meals between 500-600 calories total.

IMG_0648 IMG_0653

The after dinner snacking was not great. Friends brought ice cream to our 4th of July BBQ and left 3 cartons in our freezer. Sigh. One is Butterfingers (my effing favorite AND a trigger food for me). Michael bought a 5 pound bag of Gummy Bears from Costco. At least I only like the red ones….

Needless to say, temptations abound in my house. Not only are there temptations to eat but the temptation to sit and veg in front of the TV has pretty much been given in to these past few weeks. My reasons are above, Michael’s reasons are cycling. He’s biking to work every day and doing over 100 miles a week. I think his last update for the year was at 1100 miles total so far for 2013. Wow! So I get why he’s tired. 🙂

Friday night came and instead of going home and sitting in front of the TV I suggested we have a date night the cheap way. I went to my yoga class and then came home, cleaned up, and we got dinner to go from New Seasons Market in Sellwood.

Yoga
Yoga

They have a sandwich bar, kind of like Subway, but upscale and fancier. You get a checklist of what you want on your sandwich and basically build your own. They make it for you and wrap it up nicely and then you can go. The sandwiches are really good, too. I was surprised at the good quality, and much better than Subway! They also have lots of options; so Michael got his sandwich on a gluten free bun and I got mine on a regular ciabatta roll. We both got smoked turkey and havarti cheese, but Michael got bacon on his and I got chipotle mayo with grilled onions and Mama Lil’s Peppers. SO GOOD!

IMG_6232

Don’t notice my pale white leg in the photo! We went to the Sellwood Waterfront Park that I’ve biked past a million times on my way to and from work. It’s right near the Springwater trail with a view of the Sellwood Bridge and downtown Portland. There’s also a free, off-leash dog park and there were tons of cute dogs playing in the park.

IMG_6233

We sat on a grassy knoll overlooking the water and ate our sandwiches for dinner, enjoying the sunset over the hills. I tried a new drink, too:

IMG_6235

I was never a fan of coconut water. I WANTED to like it, especially back in the days when I was running a lot. It seemed like a healthier option than gatorade but no matter how much I tried, I hated it. I’m glad I gave this stuff a second chance because I liked it a lot. It was Kevita Sparkling Probiotic Drink with mango and coconut and I think it was only 20 calories for the bottle. It was like a sparkling water slightly flavored with mango and coconut. I’d definitely drink it again.

After our sandwiches we had dessert. Michael had half of his gluten-free brownie and I had half of my real brownie. It was pretty good but I make better brownies. 😉

IMG_6237

We cleaned up our picnic and walked down to the beach and docks. The sun was setting and it was getting cooler. The mosquitos and gnats were coming out, too. We watched the sun set, lounged on a park bench for a bit and then headed home.

IMG_6238
It was a nice, cheap, lower-calorie option for a date night than going to a restaurant. I definitely want to do it again because it was just really nice to be outside in good weather! It was peaceful and relaxing by the water. And it definitely got us out of our rut!