Monday, September 10th, Day Six, Soup

Monday, September 10th, Day Six, Soup





Alas, I must be right about “Costco-sized” being even bigger than large.  I gained a bit on the scales this morning.  Let us look on the bright side though.  If I had not tracked my food, I could easily have gained two or three pounds.  Instead I gained .2 pounds.  Moral of the story:  go back to eating no or very little afternoon snack (no more than 100 calories).  That is hard for me to do, but I will give it another go.


I remembered to take my thyroid pill first thing this morning.  That is worth 16 points in JV Life Tracker.



Last night, my husband fell, making a mess in the master bedroom.  I did not get it completely cleaned up.  I will wait until full light to see the full extent of the damage.  Thankfully, he is not hurt.  He begged me last night to not give up on him.  That was before the fall.
I will not let this stress me out.  Stress is deadly to a weight-loss regimen.  Events do not stress us.   The meaning we give those events can stress us.  If I attach a meaning to an event that threatens my relationship with my husband, I start to feel bad.  If I find meaning that strengthens it, it makes me feel good.


I had a wonderful dream last night.  I dreamed I wore an elegant, blue ballroom gown, and some of my old friends danced with me.  There was a graduation, and I had been nominated for an award.  It was so different than the dream I had so many times of going back to college and having to drop out.
Mike Dooley wrote about dreams in Playing the Matrix. He said that dreams are created by the mind.  He also said that thoughts become things.  I did go back to college in the year 2000 and had to drop out.  After that, those dreams stopped or at least became less frequent.  Maybe the meaning I can derive is that there will be dancing, friends, a graduation, and an award in my future.  We shall see.

Top Five

Let me think of my Top Five for today.  I hesitate to list getting out my husband’s stitches because he can thwart getting that done.  However, it does really need to be done.
1.        Big Four (Cronometer, meditation, JV Life Tracker, journal).
2.        Shower.
3.        Strength training plus other exercises such as walking, the plank, etc.  (Yeah, walking the plank!)
4.        Writing:  Day Six plus get Day One ready to post to my blog.
5.        Make a homemade tomato and zucchini soup in the crock pot.
Concerning the soup, I think I will slice zucchini length-wise, then cut it in the cutter with the waffle cut blade.  I can cut the tomatoes in halves or quarters.


Meditation is first, or at least very near the beginning of my day.  I think I will play Mindfulness for Releasing Anxiety by Glenn Harrold.  Let me see if my husband is willing to listen also.
He is not.  Besides that, my phones both need charging.  So I will need to wait.


I could get breakfast.  I want to wait for that too.  A walk to the mailboxes may be in order.  That may lift my mood a bit.  I am feeling a bit discouraged this morning.  There was no Sunday mail delivery, so there will be no mail.  That is okay.  I can go anyway.  My husband may have something in his cubby, and I need the walk.
I dressed in a hot pink blouse that brings out the color of my face.  I met a woman with a hot pink jacket and exchanged pleasantries with her.  There was nothing in the cubby, nothing in the mailbox.
The pool is 86 degrees again.  I need to start swimming.  I want to encourage rather than guilt myself into it.


My husband mentioned last night that we are sneezing from the dust.  I asked him if he wanted to buy a vacuum or pay for housekeeping.  He said he would rather pay for housekeeping.  It is up to me to arrange it.  I will do that soon.  I wonder if housekeeping will clean the mess in the bedroom too.
It is now 8:08 AM.  The dishwasher is running.  We do not have enough dishes to fill it.


Yesterday, I ordered nuts, etc. from  They are a little pricey, but their quality is top notch.  Their service is great too.  I ordered coconut, almonds, pecans, and cashews.
I ate breakfast.  It was low in carbohydrates.  That has its pros and cons.  I will have to see how well it gets me through the morning.  I am feeling a bit drowsy.  Maybe I should add a pear even though my calories are already over 500.  I think I will.
I ate half a pear.  Many fruits have too many carbohydrates, sugar, and fructose for one meal.  One solution is to cut them in half.  There.  Now I am feeling more alert with 15.6 net carbs for breakfast.


The right number of carbohydrate grams is different for every one.  In Fat for Fuel, Dr. Joseph Mercola advocates no more than forty and even recommends as little as five grams of carbohydrate a day.  For me that is drastically low. I ate about forty grams of net carbs a day for a time, but I could never completely shake the accompanying nausea.
A more moderate approach of about 140 net carbs a day is more comfortable for me.  Dr. Mercola says you can probably even eat that many, once you have trained your body to burn fat.  You may need to eat somewhat less than that for effective weight loss however, because carbs trigger insulin production, and insulin can make you fat.  Experiment.  Use Cronometer to help you gauge it.  It is important to keep records.  If you do not, you will not know how much carbohydrate you are eating.  Carbs can make you feel good, so balance your fat-loss goals with your feel-good goals.  It is a fine line.
The body makes serotonin, the feel good neurotransmitter from l-tryptophan.  Carb intake accelerates the serum removal of the amino acids valine, leucine, and isoleucine that compete with l-tryptophan for entry into the brain.  With more l-tryptophan available, you will make more serotonin, assuming you have active vitamin B6 available.
You can curb your craving for carbs and feel better by taking l-tryptophan as a supplement.  L-tryptophan can relieve depression in a matter of minutes, where SSRI’s can take weeks to become effective.  I have taken it for almost 15 years.  This may not be recommended however, if you are taking an SSRI.  It can possibly result in serotonin syndrome–too much serotonin.  Be cautious, and talk to your doctor.


I tried again to talk to my husband about his stitches but to no avail.  I think I may let him bring it up with me rather than trying to look out for him, when he will not look out for himself.  I do not know the consequences of leaving in stitches too long.  Whenever I have had them in the past, I have gotten them removed as soon as possible.
It appears that alcohol inhibits the executive functions in the brain, including planning.  My husband is as sweet as possible, but to me he seems almost incapable of planning his life, thinking ahead, and seeing the consequences of things.  That puts a burden on me to take care of almost everything.  I can do that to a large extent, but sometimes I need his cooperation, such as when I am going to move him somewhere.
I borrowed a transport chair from South Metro.  We have it available, if he needs it.  He has used it very infrequently.  He refuses the idea of using a cane or walker.  What do I do?  It is a conundrum.  For now, it appears that the right thing for me to do is write.  When I pray about what to do, the answer is always “write”.

Morning Prayer

Dear Lord,
I express my gratitude for protecting me.  I appreciate the abundance in my life that my husband helps provide.  Help me to rise to my challenges.  My husband needs to have his stitches removed.  They said it should be done in five to seven days.  Today is the ninth day.
I feel that I should call the Home Support Line again.  They said they would call me back, but they have not yet.  I found they were trying to call me back, but they had the wrong number, by one digit.  Wow!  I could have waited forever for them.  I am waiting for them to call again.  They do not appear to be very well staffed.
Dear Lord,
Thanks for that tidbit of help.  What should I do next?
I think it is time for my meditation.  I am afraid they may call me during my meditation though.
Dear Lord,
Should I meditate while I am waiting?
Okay, on my other phone?  That will work.
Now I feel more peaceful, having meditated on Mindfulness for Releasing Anxiety.  I did not receive a call though.


There.  I just got soup in the crock pot.  It has quartered campari tomatoes, sliced button mushrooms, sliced green onions, waffle-cut zucchini, chicken stock, filtered water, olive oil, dried basil, oregano, and rosemary, sea salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper.  It should be delicious.
I learned something new about my cutter.  When I halved the zucchini lengthwise and then cut it with the peel facing the front of the cutter, it does not try to peel it, which is what I wanted.  I cut it quickly, without even needing the safety plate.  I do not recommend you try using your cutter without the safety plate until you have had some experience with it.
The soup will be ready about 3:30 PM.  I hope my husband loves it.  He seems to love all my cooking.


I have published my own cookbook before, so perhaps I know some things about cooking.  I took two cooking classes in high school: 1) foods and 2) foreign foods and creative cooking.  Most of my early experiences in cooking were cooking for a family of fourteen.  It took a ten-pound sack of potatoes for one meal.
I roomed in the dorms at college where we cooked for a group of six, rotating about once a week.  Then we cooked for ourselves when we roomed off-campus.  I regret that I knew much less about nutrition back then.  I mostly ate grilled cheese sandwiches and peanut butter and honey sandwiches.  I kept some peanut butter and honey in my locker and ate in the mother’s nursing room of the rest room in the math building.  At least I survived.  Even if I had known more about nutrition, I probably would not have been able to afford eating according to the best of my knowledge.



Emergency Room

I got my husband to the hospital emergency room!  They took out his stitches.  We got up there and back without mishap.  He is shaking and revved up now.  I am not sure how to help him calm down.  I felt exultant that we got that all done, but he is pretty shaken up.

JV Life Tracker

I scored JV Life Tracker and got 933 points for yesterday.  That is not bad.  When I score over 1,000 points, I know that I am very active in areas of importance to me.  I am very weary right now though.  Getting my husband to the hospital was no trivial activity.
Perhaps I should give myself 70 points for taking him somewhere in the jeep with the transport chair.  Maybe I should give myself 90 points for taking him somewhere and another 90 points for bringing him back home.  I know:  I will score 74 points each way, one point for each year of his age.  His birthday is this month, so that will then be 75 points each way.
Bear with me while I take you through these planning steps.  I want you to see what you can do with JV Life Tracker.  You can give yourself multiple points for important and/or time-consuming activities to reward and acknowledge yourself for your efforts.  It helps motivate me and keep me from mania and depression.  What can it do for you?

Panic Attack

It is now 3:19 PM.  My husband had a panic attack.  I encouraged him to take some medication, and now he is sleeping.  He may be delirious though.  He was talking just now, and it did not make sense.
It is just about time for the soup to be ready.  I have only had 692 calories so far today.  When we left for the hospital, it was about noon.  I was afraid I would need to eat while we were there, but my hunger did not bother me.  I ate after returning but not a full meal.
Fortunately, I stayed calm through all of this.  I am a bit concerned though that my husband will not want to go anywhere else, if he remembers that he had a panic attack this time.
We never did go to the jewelers so we could buy him a gold wedding band.  That did not stop the wedding, though I had to arrange a mobile notary, so he could sign a absentee affidavit for our marriage license.
He simply does not want to go anywhere.  Getting him out of the house for his stitches was a major victory.  I am just disappointed it was accompanied by a panic attack.


I took a sip of the soup, and it tastes like it is really good.  I need to let it cool though before I sample it further.  Yes, it is good, even if I do approve of my own cooking.  I do not have the exact numbers for it, but you can probably make something quite similar from my list of ingredients.  It is probably less than one calorie per gram.  The olive oil provides most of the calories.  It may even fit into a ketogenic diet.  Let me make a guesstimate with Cronometer.  There.  It is less than half a calorie per gram.
Here is my closest estimate for the soup:
Tomato-Zucchini-Mushroom Basil Soup
750 grams campari tomatoes, quartered
280 grams zucchini, waffle-cut
150 grams button mushrooms, sliced
45 grams green onions, sliced
2 cups chicken stock
sea salt, basil, oregano, rosemary to taste
1/2 cup olive oil
dash cayenne pepper
about 5 cups filtered water
Put everything in the crock pot, fill the crock pot with filtered water (about five cups), and cook on high for four hours.
My husband absolutely loved the soup.  He said I am a food artist.  He said it was a gorgeous soup.  He is amazed at my ability to create recipes.


It is now 7:01 PM.  My husband is resting again.  We enjoyed some time together with the soup and did a couples devotional with Joel and Victoria Osteen’s Our Best Life Together.  We ate the soup again for supper.  The Lord has blessed us beyond our expectations today.  The soup was a hit, and we made it to the hospital.  I am so grateful!
I called my mother tonight to wish her happy anniversary.  My parents have been together for 60 years!

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