Defeat Garden


I recently bought The Victory Garden Cookbook.  It’s a great cookbook, but I’m not such a great gardener.  Thus the title of the blog.  Here’s my proof about my gardening skills, the herb garden that’s sitting on my kitchen counter:

I do love to cook, and especially with good quality ingredients.  Fresh vegetables are my favorite, and I’m really excited that we found a great CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) to join up with, especially since my garden doesn’t do so well!  I get a lot of comments on the food I make, from family and coworkers, and I enjoy sharing what I make.  This seemed like the next logical step to take.  Hope you enjoy my posts!

I realize that I should probably explain my tagline – Changing the way I think about food.  So, here’s my story.

In the fall of 2008, I went in for my annual check-up and had my cholesterol and other blood levels checked.  At the time, I was 26 years old.  My doctor got the results back and told me that my cholesterol was high.  I was a little surprised, as was she.  My husband (aka the man) had just decided to start eating differently after seeing how good one of his coworkers was feeling after doing something similar, and I told him I’d try to do it with him.  I had told my doctor about this, and she said since we were making changes, she wanted me to get everything checked again in six months, but if there weren’t any improvements, she’d have to put me on cholesterol medicine.  I don’t like pills in any shape or form, so this was a good kick in the butt for me to stick with the new way of eating.  What we ended up doing was to drop starchy foods (potatoes, rice, bread) and processed foods (including sweets) from our diet.  Obviously it wasn’t all at once, at least for me 🙂  The man seemed to have no problem with the switch, but I struggled a little more than he did.  I still think the only way I made it through the first couple of months was a cookbook that I found at Barnes & Noble called 500 Low Carb Recipes by Dana Carpenter.  I still use that cookbook on a weekly basis, although some of the recipes (like skillet chicken florentine) are basically second nature to me now.  The thing that amazed me after the first couple of weeks was that suddenly, food tasted better.  It was kind of an odd feeling, to stop eating sweets and suddenly find out that fruit is really a sweet food!  Oranges came into season right around that point, and I was absolutely amazed.  I stopped eating them after the beginning of 2009 because I couldn’t stand it anymore – they were suddenly hard and dry and not sweet at all!  I still get really excited when oranges come into season – last winter I was talking to my son  (aka the boy) in the grocery store and said “Yay! Oranges are good again!” and a little old lady who heard me started giggling.

So, six months passed by with us eating mostly fruits, vegetables, and meat, and I was really enjoying the food I was eating.  I was cooking every night and was starting to get pretty good at it (at least that’s what the man told me!).  I got my cholesterol checked again, and waited for my doctor to call me back.  She left me a message and said that I needed to call her back as soon as I had a chance.  Naturally, I was a little nervous, but when I called her, she told me that I was amazing and that whatever I was doing, I needed to keep doing it, because my cholesterol had decreased by 30%.  In only 6 months.  At the same time, I had lost 40 pounds.  The man didn’t have his blood checked, so he doesn’t have before and after stats, but I’m sure his were just as impressive.

Another year has gone by, and I’ve pretty much levelled out weight-wise at 60 pounds less than when I started.  The man’s probably about the same, 55-60 pounds less than when we started.  We both feel great, the kids are finally starting to enjoy fruits and vegetables, and really, life is pretty darn good!


3 Responses to "About"

Thanks for stopping by my blog. I feel like we can get along in real life. I LOVE to cook and I have always loved gardening but it doesn’t seem to have the same degree of enthusiasm towards me. I have tried a number of times. Basil, orchid, roses…all in pots because I lived in an apartment building. But no luck. I will give it another shot next spring. I just recently moved back in with my Mom who has a nice yard for vegetables and a nice flower garden but I moved late into the summer. So I didn’t really want to toil and sweat over something that will disappear in a few.

Anyway, you have a beautiful and healthy family. More power to you.

Thanks Janis! I have definitely enjoyed your blog, and I can relate to a lot of your struggles! I’ll try to keep up with you and support your efforts, I know it’s difficult!

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