Buying a new car, stupid mascara, and intermittent fasting

I probably should break up all these topics into separate posts.  But, well, I’m lazy for starters.  Secondly, I really don’t have enough to say about any one of these topics to justify a whole post.  Thirdly, I just really want to post this all together.  So there.

So, topic #1 – buying a new car.

Tim and I have never purchased a brand-new car.  We’ve toyed with the idea but always erred on the side of fiscal responsibility and bought used. Well, our Civic has 145K+ miles on it, and it’s starting to experience some mechanical issues.  And then there’s the Escort.  The Escort has been with us for a long time, over a decade.  We’ve put over 100k miles on it, and it shows.  She’s rusty, she’s loud, she’s dented.  But she’s ours, and she’s totally paid for. But, Tim is at risk of getting asphyxiated whilst driving her, due to the aforementioned rust and exhaust issues.  So, it’s probably time to let her go.

We test drove a few cars – Honda Fit (too teen-agey), Honda CRV (too ubiquitous), and then we hit the Subaru lot.  We drove the Outback, Forester, Legacy and the Impreza.  We loved them all, especially the Impreza.  It’s an awesome little car for the money.

For the money.  Hmm.  The Impreza is “cheap” at $21,000 +, but oh my goodness.  TWENTY-THOUSAND DOLLARS!!  That is so much money.  And then today, I researched insurance.  It would cost us $500 more dollars per year just to INSURE the thing.  For some reason, the Impreza is more expensive to insure than the Outback even though the Outback is a more expensive vehicle.  I bet it’s because the Impreza looks and feels sportier and thus more dangerous.

So while my impractical, consumer-oriented side really, really, really wants a brand new,  cute little Impreza, my practical side is thinking, “I think the Civic will get us by for a while yet, and save us $400 per month in the process.”

Why oh why must I love expensive things?

Speaking of which, you know what non-expensive thing I do NOT love?  Cover Girl Natural Luxe mascara.  It is so lame.  It actually STRAIGHTENS my eye lashes.  AND it’s clumpy.  And the brush is huge.  I have again reverted to my old standby – Maybelline Define-A-Lash.  It doesn’t give a ton of body, but it defines every lash (as promised) and leaves my painstakingly curled lashes curly.

So, on to the last topic of conversation, intermittent fasting (or IF).  In case you are unfamiliar with what IFing is, it’s periodically fasting.  It’s supposed to be good for  you – help you get in tune with your body, lose weight, improve overall health and longevity, etc.  Well, today I fasted until lunch time.  Not eating until lunch time wasn’t a big deal.  Sure, I was hungry, but I wasn’t passing out or anything.  But AFTER I ate, wow.  I was super snacky.  I couldn’t STOP eating once I started.  And now it’s a Monday night at 4:58 and I’m drinking wine and eating chocolate.  Hmm… I don’t doubt that fasting is good for you.  I just think I shouldn’t discount the mental effects – I know I skipped breakfast so my brain thinks it’s OK to eat whatever I want when the fast is over.  Hopefully the more I do this, the more  I will see the good effects instead of the bad ones.

So, that’s all that’s on my mind for tonight.  Have a pleasant evening!

Old Navy – How I Love and Despise Thee

Every once in a while I’ll go into Old Navy and just be overwhelmed by how much stuff I like and how cheap it is.  Of course, I say and mean cheap – not inexpensive.  Their stuff doesn’t last long, but typically I get tired of my clothes before they wear out, so that’s not a big deal.

Then sometimes I walk in and am overwhelmed by the fact that they have nothing in my size (no longs?? only XS and XXL??) and their quality sucks.  All their jeans only wear well once.  There’s no telling how much they will stretch AND shrink.

Currently I’m in a spell where I like their stuff a lot, but, not in the mood to deal with the sizing issues or the horrible, hot flourescent lighting, I ordered online.  The package arrived today.  I got some long Dreamer jeans, which were too long (although regulars are too short – argh) and too high-waisted, some shorts which were too short and too baby-puke colored, and two amazing t-shirts for $4.40 (Womens Tri-Blend V-Neck T’s).  These have an excellent drape, are nice and long, and very soft.  I got grey and black and love them both.  Hopefully they won’t lose too much length in the wash.

I also got another dress (toldja I’m only wearing dresses from now on – especially since all jeans ever made are stupid, and I hate them). It’s a Women’s Floral -Chiffon Keyhole Dress in Blue Oracle.  It is very feminine and pretty.  When I went to Old Navy tonight to return the jeans & shorts (you can order online and return in the store, which is super awesome), I noticed that the very same dress was $9 cheaper in the store!  I went to pick one up, intending to later return my expensive one, only to note that the size gremlin had struck again-only XXL left.  Oh well.  It made me feel better for paying more for it online.  Any time I wait for sales at Old Navy, my size is always gone.  I just have to ante up.

So, to summarize, Old Navy both sucks and is awesome.  If you are looking for some cheap summer duds (that will probably only last the summer), check them out.

Double-edged sword

We went out for supper tonight at 11th Street Precinct.  I got their famous tenderloin – no bun of course, with coleslaw instead of fries, along with a Coors Light.  While it tasted good, my stomach immediately felt off.  This is the problem with becoming primal – you make such tasty, delicious food at home that eating out is a let down!  It’s rare to eat something at a restaurant that tastes as good as what you  make at home.

Look at these fantastic recipes I made this week:

Avocado Boats These things were super delicious.  Essentially you make chicken salad with bacon, red onion, grape tomatoes, mayo (I used full fat Hellmans because last time I made homemade with olive oil it turned out a little janky.  I need to try it with avocado oil), garlic, salt and pepper.  The recipe also called for “2 Tbs. Peace and Love.”  That confused me.  I thought maybe it was a spice mix I hadn’t heard of, so I Googled it to no avail.  Eventually, by going back to the the recipe site, I realized that “peace and love” are in all her recipes.  They are but FIGURATIVE  ingredients.  I added a bunch of love but no peace, and it still turned out good.  Then you make guacamole, scoop it into the avocado shells, and cover it with the chicken salad.  The guacamole instructions in the recipe were a little sparse, so I used this tried and true recipe, and it turned out fantastic.  I scooped the leftover guac and chicken salad into a small container, covered it with plastic wrap, smooshing out all the air and then ate the leftovers 2 days later. They still tasted fantastic.  Next time I might leave out the avocado shell part – the presentation is pretty, but inconvenient.  I got guac everywhere, trying to scoop out the last delicious tidbits.

From the week we had lots of leftover meat – hamburger, pork chops, chicken, so I made this Chipotle Slaw to add the meat smörgåsbord.  It was, to quote the annoying movie star/secret agent chick on Archer, AMAZING!  It was very simple – cabbage, chipotle pepper, lime, apple cider vinegar, honey, cilantro and salt.  I topped mine with some avocado and grape tomatoes and ate it with a cold leftover grass-fed hamburger.  It was so tasty.

So, now you begin to understand my difficulty.  We are spoiled from too much good food at home to appreciate eating out.  Of course, eating at home is way better for you and less expensive, but eating out used to be so much fun.  You get to go out and see and be seen and mingle and socialize.  I guess we’re going to have to widen our comfort zone and start bringing people into our house and make them eat our delicious food.  And we’ll make them play cards with us.

Primal-ish

I am starting my 3rd or 4th cycle of the 21-Day challenge. When it finishes, I just start over at the beginning.  It gives me some structure, which I sorely need.  I’ve been doing pretty good on the plan so far.  I feel good, have good energy levels, I’ve lost weight.  Losing weight is both a good thing and a  bad thing.  It’s good because I’m healthier. It’s bad because I have to spend money on new clothes.  And boy have I!  I’ve recently rediscovered dresses.  I bought this hot little number at Old Navy last week.  When I tried it on for Tim, he said I looked like a hot Mexican cleaning lady, which I think is a good thing.  I wore it out today for the first time and was amazed at how cool and refreshing it is!  I may never wear shorts again.  In fact, I ordered another dress from Old Navy today.  This will be the summer of the dress.  Shorts be damned.

Back to the whole primal thing.  I’ve been sloppy this week.  Tim’s been on Spring Break this week, so we’ve gotten out of our regular routine and habits.  I’ve been eating more and worse food (buns! bagels! popcorn!) and drinking more beer.  I’m not sweating it too much, however.  I know I can and will get back on track when Tim’s schedule gets back to normal.  I feel so much better when I eat strictly primal, that I’m not too tempted to fall off the wagon permanently.

To keep myself from overindulging in non-primal sweets (hello Whitey’s Moose Tracks malts!), I made Caramel Pecan bars from this recipe.  I have to say, they didn’t turn out half bad.  You can see a photo of one in my Instagram feed to the right.  Tim even professed to like them and said that no one would guess they were “primal.”

With a food processor they were not difficult to make; although, I did dirty a tremendous amount of dishes.  Also, the “caramel” sauce on top is really made of ground up dates, mixed with vanilla and a few other ingredients.  I have bad luck putting dates in the food processor.  I assume they are supposed to get all chopped up into tiny pieces, but whenever I do it, they get chopped into medium size pieces that form a huge clump above the spinning blade.  I scrape the chunks back down to the bottom, turn on the processor again, only to have them spun above the blade again a few seconds later.  I don’t know what I am doing wrong.  Maybe I need to chop them up into smaller pieces before putting them in the blender.  I soaked the dates in water for an hour like the recipe stated and everything.    Oh well, they still turned out pretty tasty.  I may have actually overcooked the base. The recipe said to cook it for 20-25 minutes.  I cooked it for 20 minutes, at which point it was already a little overcooked.

So that’s been my week in a nutshell – eating, exercising, shopping, cooking.  Good times.

Really off the wagon

So…what I meant to do tonight:  come home from work, go for a jog, make some grass-fed steak with steamed broccoli, watch some TV, do some reading, go to bed, etc., etc., etc.

What I actually did tonight?  Went out for beers with some friends, purchased and ate $3 burger basket and fries (with bun – eek!), stopped at HyVee and bought (and then subsequently ate) a Whitey’s Moose Tracks malt, and then satiated my salt tooth with some pistachios.

And now I am sitting on the couch, watching X-Files, waiting for the inevitable stomachache.  The headache has already started.

I blame my fall off the wagon on a picture of delicious Mexican food posted by a friend of mine on Instagram.  The cheesy deliciousness could not be resisted. It could only be satisfied by ingesting copious amounts of wheat, sugar, and dairy.

Ah, alas, tomorrow is another day.  I will be good tomorrow, I swears.