Friday, July 10, 2009

Ideas for eating on the road

My friend Nancy is doing a lot of traveling and is looking for ideas on how to keep your lifestyle healthy. I'm going to provide some of my ideas. Everyone else please chip in!

1. Split dinners and lunches with a pal at the table.
2. If you really want to order something interesting, order it with a few people and everyone take a bite.
3. Google restaurants that are all natural, seasonal, local cuisine.
4. Ask your waiter not to use any fat other than butter or olive oil on your food.
5. Don't eat anything deep fried.
6. Carry snacks with you (this from my nutritionist) including fruits, a jar of juice, cheese, raw nuts, raw veggies and hummus. Keep it all in a small cooler that travels with you at all times.
7. Eat small meals between the big ones so you aren't as tempted.
8. Keep alcohol to a glass a day and two on Saturday.
9. Don't stop for fast food ever! Find a grocery store and have a sandwich and a piece of fruit or veggies.
10. Don't eat salads if you are hungry because you'll just be hungry again later and eat a big dessert or something. I skip salads and just get some steamed veggies with a piece of fish, lean meat or chicken. I'm more full and less tempted to cheat.

Any other ideas?

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Summer travel/visitors

Whew! Summer is a whirlwind of traveling, visiting and visitors and the past weekend and one coming up are no exception.

Last weekend I met some of Tim's family for the first time (at least met them for any length of time). It was nervous because it's the first family get-together since Tim's separation a few years ago and I was worried I would be the outsider. Fortunately, after a bit of awkwardness at the beginning, typical of getting to know a new person (mostly on my part), it all went well. Tim's family was really gracious and we had a great time!

The hard part was the food, since I am really trying to eat seasonally and organically. Eating healthy really has a different meaning for everyone. Tim's mom had planned burgers and brats for Friday and Saturday, so I supplemented that with chicken breasts for my own eating. Her side dishes were potato salad and chips and this cream cheese onion dip (really good), but I knew I needed more veggies and fruit so I added a big fruit salad with kiwi, melon, grapes, raspberries, blueberries and a big veggie salad with artichoke hearts, hearts of palm, grape tomatoes sliced in two, broccoli, carrot slices, garbanzo beans and snow peas. The veggie salad is also yummy with salad dressing. I also made a pesto pasta salad with fresh peas and cherry tomatoes. Our collaboration went very well and we pretty much kept dipping into the same dishes all weekend.

On Sunday, we all had the Meidl Sunday traditional meal of pizza and I'll admit that I dug right in. When I came home, I wasn't surprised to find that I had gained 3 pounds, but today it's already gone. Probably water weight.

Tim's mom is great about just eating really small portions and I tried to match my portions to hers. I also stayed away from snacking except when Tim and I took all of the kids to Night at the Museum. I can't resist movie popcorn, which is why I rarely go to the movies. It was a great time and I don't regret the flubs at all.

I balanced it out this week. Yesterday, I had eggs for breakfast made by my Tim, then chicken breast, cheese and veggies for lunch on the road. Dinner was out at the Green Lantern in McFarland by boat with friends and I had steamed shrimp, broccoli and a salad. Yay me!

Now this weekend, we have guests with two children coming in to town. They are friends of Tim's from Oshkosh and I don't know their eating habits that well, although they seem pretty easy going. While I'm excited for the visit, I always stress a bit planning the menu. I want it to be good for the kids as well as the adults and I always seem to cook a bit too fancy for kids. The only blessing here is that our garden is coming in pretty lush, so the seasonal aspect will be pretty easy.

Here's what I've come up with thus far.

Friday night
Salmon on the grill (hot dogs if kids don't like salmon)
Corn on the cob
Cous cous with summer veggies and herbs
Dessert: Blueberry cobbler

Saturday breakfast
Breakfast burritos (make your own) with egg, onion, mushroom, fried taters, salsa and cheese.
Also rhubarb muffins

Saturday dinner
Ribs and chicken on the grill
Salad with oninos, radishes and raspberry vinaigrette
Potatoes sliced thin on grill
Seasonal veggie side dish (I'm heading to the Farmer's Market)
Lemon curd tart with raspberries and strawberries

Sunday breakfast
Egg frittata
Fruit salad

Sunday lunch
Pizzas on the grill

Any other suggestions?