Cactus, it doesn’t taste like chicken

Growing up in the Southwest I ate a lot of Mexican food, especially my mom’s cooking.

She never used nopales to cook, which are prickly pear cactus. I have had it a few times.

On Monday when Curt and I had lunch at a cafe both of our meals came with nopales.

Curt had a Mexican fusion dish with fish, nopales, cheese and salsa verde. I had chicken tacos with chilis and nopales.

So, of course, this prompted me to do some research on the nutritional value of the cactus.

According to Livestrong, a serving is one cup of raw, has 14 calories; 1.1 gram of protein; 0.1 g fat; 2.9 grams of carbohydrates; 1.9 grams of fiber. The cactus also provides vitamins and minerals.

According to Gourmet Sleuth, nopales is a vegetable that can be grilled or boiled. If boiling be careful to not overcook or the cactus can get slimy. (I have definitely eaten it that way and it is kinda gross.)

The Gourmet Sleuth also says, the best preparation we have tried is to prepare the nopal leaves (remove spines) then grill over hot coals till tender and slightly browned. Then slice into nopalitos … Continue reading

My healthy version of Eggplant Parmigiana

I love Eggplant Parmigiana. It is so delicious but so unhealthy with it being fried and all.

I also love eggplant. Lucky for me I like most vegetables (and fruit).

At Monday’s Earth Day event at work there was a mini Farmer’s Market. I bought some eggplant, which I normally steam in my rice cooker/steamer and mix with brown rice, seasonings and Kung Pao sauce.

Since I bought two I thought with one I would try to make a healthy version of Eggplant Parmigiana.

I sliced the eggplant and baked in the oven for 10 minutes on each side at 350. After that I lightly slathered spaghetti sauce on both sides of each sliced piece of eggplant. Right now all I have is goat cheese. So I sprinkled a little goat cheese on top of each slice.

I had some last night on its own with some healthy and delicious sides. It was pretty good. Of course not as good as the real deal. But good enough.

For a late lunch today I cooked up some penne with a little bit of spaghetti sauce. I put the remaining two eggplants on top of the pasta and had a delicious meal. … Continue reading

A good night’s sleep

From what I have read and what I I just know 7-9 hours of sleep at night is recommended and ideal.

Because I get up at 5:30 four days a week I try to get in bed between 9:30 and 10. I usually have no problem falling asleep. A lot of time I am crashing on the couch while watching TV. (And even on the weekends it is tough for me to stay up past 10.)

Falling asleep is the easy part for me. Staying asleep is another story. I wake up a lot. It seems to go through cycles. A good night of sleep for me is only waking up a few times and falling right back asleep. A bad night is waking up more than five times and and a few of those times being awake for 30 minutes to an hour.

If I am having a lot of trouble falling back asleep I will usually move to the spare room and try to sack out on the futon.

I do have Ambien. But I take it sparingly. If I have two to three nights of bad sleep … Continue reading

Gettin’ my shredding done

In my massive de-cluttering project a big part of it is the shredding. Ugh, oh, the shredding.

The shredder I had before was old and tired. And the shredding was very slow going.

So on Thursday night I headed to Office Depot and bought a new shredder. I was willing to pay 100 bucks for a new shredder. I found a “medium duty” shredder, which was originally $100, but on sale for $60. Nice deal.

(By the way, the shredders at Office Depot seem to be on sale until the end of March.)

My new shredder can shred 12 sheets at once and it does so quickly. I did some shredding on Friday. And yesterday, that thing went to town. I finished all the shredding I needed to yesterday. I had planned to shred all weekend and possibly a few more weekends.

It’s a good thing I didn’t have to do any shredding today as I am a complete zombie with the Spring Forward.

When I got back from yoga today I was so tired. I lounged watching some taped TV I needed to catch up on. And then I took a nap. I am still feeling a little zombie-like.

Continue reading

Springing forward

Most places in North America will Spring Forward tomorrow at 2 a.m. (The UK and Europe will follow in a couple of weeks.)

Being from Arizona I never had to do this until I moved to Oregon in 1997. And initially I had no issues with the time change.

It’s different now and has been for some time.

I hate changing time. Yes, it is only one hour. But whether we are Springing Forward or Falling Back it completely messes me up.

If I have time tomorrow I would like to take the 6 p.m. Restorative yoga class. I think that will really help me sleep better tomorrow night.

Sometimes the Restorative yoga teacher gives us tips if we are having trouble sleeping. A good stretch while lying on your back: Spread your arms and hands and your feet and yours legs and then let go.

This is my advice on how to deal with the time change:

Getting over my cold on the couch

So I stayed home from work today.

I watched TV, movies, napped, lounged on the couch, took one work call … and I feel a lot better.

I am still congested and a little tired. But nothing like I felt yesterday.

OK, enough about me getting better.

So I am still disappointed that I had to quit my cleanse early. But something good did come out of it.

I lost 3.2 pounds over the week. I had no idea it would have that kind of weight loss. And really, I didn’t do the cleanse to lose weight. I had already been eating healthy and losing weight with portion-controlled filling meals and regular exercise.

Since quitting the cleanse everything I eat tastes so good. My first piece of chocolate on Monday was like heaven. So I am a little worried that my hard work will go out the window. But I am working hard to prevent that.

Wish me luck!

Black Friday workout …

consisted of two naps and many beers.

So my plan Friday morning was to hit the gym. I actually slept in to almost 8 a.m. That is pretty late for me. It was dark and rainy. I got lazy and ended up napping.

Then Curt and I headed to lunch and beers. Then home for another nap!

Then I got ready to head out and have drinks with friends.

So Friday wasn’t as productive in the workout category as I would have liked. But I did hit the gym for two hours on Saturday for my regular workout.

Tried out my new spin shoes

photo-2In spin class tonight I used my new cycling shoes. It didn’t take me too long to get my cleats into the pedal. And then I was ready to go.

The class was way better with the cycling shoes. My feet felt pretty good. I didn’t have to worry about the strap being too loose or too tight on my feet. My left foot never got its normal cramp and my right foot didn’t fall asleep, like it normally does.

The instructor had us do endurance for the whole class. Man, it was tough. It was so hot, too. It was humid in the classroom. And I was in the front row being blasted by the tornado fan.

I have been doing spin pretty consistently for more than a year and man, it is still tough. I definitely have gotten better. But that class still kicks my butt every time. I do have to say I usually sleep pretty well on Tuesday and Thursday nights and I usually need a nap on Saturday afternoons.