Her detailed list won by inches. She will win a home-cooked dinner date at my house or a complimentary coffee next time we have a date, her choice. However, for her valiant effort, Jessica wins the second place prize as long as she 1) likes pancakes, 2) doesn't have any food allergies, and 3) is willing to let me send her something.
From left to right, we have
whole wheat English muffins, whole grain baked pita chips, Crispix cereal, pumpkin seeds, raw almonds, garbanzo beans, sweet peas, petite diced tomatoes, corn, red curry paste, nutella, whole wheat pasta shells, Yoplait light yogurt, 100 calorie Jello pudding pack, baby carrots, hummus, skim milk, shallots, red pepper, lime, yellow pepper, Dole Hearts Delight lettuce, basil, blackberries, strawberries, PINK LADY APPLES (both of you guessed nectarines!), bananas, Kashi blueberry waffles, Kraft 2% cheddar cheese, fresh tilapia, and flank steak.
And that's Henry Weinhard's root beer in the background, only the best!
As you can tell from my grocery list, I have made a pact with myself to become more conscious about putting processed foods in my body. I'm not cutting things out permanently because that's just begging for failure, but I am going to be intentional and go the extra mile to plan to eat things like celery instead of chips when I need a crunchy snack, or bananas with peanut butter when I need a little pick-me-up at 3 p.m. on a long work day. Now, I probably could go sugar-free forever, but here's why I'm not going to:
1) I have a very all or nothing personality. I get it from my dad. The only problem is, I'm not very good at the nothing aspect of it, so I will try to give it up and then allow myself to splurge one rainy Saturday. And then I go crazy. I've learned that healthy balance is tough, but just a reality for me.
2) Um, have you not learned by now that chocolate is like air for me? I wouldn't go so far to say that my happiness depends on it, but close.
What prompted this decision, you ask? Well I don't know if you remember, but I gave up sugar and refined flour for Lent. And it felt amazing. While I could never go sugar-free or flour-free for the reasons listed above, I sense a definite difference in my body when I limit it. Limited sugar = no carb crashes. I retain less water. I'm less hungry and I eat less.
But mark my words:
This is not a diet.
Currently Listening to: Playlist of Star Wars, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings and other assorted nerd movie scores
Currently Watching: American Idol finale (GO KRIS!)
Currently Reading: Jodi Picoult - Sister's Keeper
Currently Cooking: Baked Fish (tilapia) and Veggie (peppers and squash) Pockets (rolled in aluminum foil and baked), Giada's recipe (of course) with whole wheat couscous, scallions, and corn.