January Blues

I’m struggling to enjoy my final moments of break. It’s been a really great break. It has been so much fun spending hours on end with Andras, watching ER (yeah! You read that right!), walking Bartley, and now cooking, as we’ve taken on the Whole30 challenge together.

Day 2 Menu
Breakfast Snack: Anti-inflammatory Blueberry Smoothie 
Brunch: 2 scrambled eggs, strawberries & blueberries, sausage, hash browns, black coffee.
Snack: Salami

Whole30Day2 (1)

Dinner: Salt & Pepper Shrimp. It  was INCREDIBLE! You can find the recipe here

Dinner continued: For the mashed potatoes, we added one shallot, 1 T of fresh rosemary, and 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk. Mmm! It all turned out really well, and was very easy!
Snack: Strawberries

But, back to the fun stuff – January Blues. 😀 I guess I’m just getting caught up with thoughts about the impending back-to-school stress fest, rather than living in the moment. I think it would help some if I did some lesson planning early in the day tomorrow. I am beyond grateful that Monday is a professional development day, and our administrators are actually giving us the majority of the day for prep.

Goals for tomorrow: Sleep in. Yoga. Plan. Breathe. Eat Well.

Good night!

So Much Sugar!

Well, I had a healthy-ish day… but there was so much sugar throughout! Today is my dad’s birthday, so I made him some cupcakes. I used this recipe

http://allrecipes.com/recipe/155534/vegan-cupcakes/

Vegan Cupcakes (not my picture)

but went for whole milk instead of almond, and reduced it down to 12 servings. I tried this vegan recipe on a whim once, and now it is my go-to cupcake recipe! I love them.

For the frosting, I used another recipe I’ve tried before. I remembered my dad raving about them, so I decided to bring it back.  Delicious, light and fluffy, strawberry frosting – perfect!

It was a busy day for cooking, so after the birthday cupcakes and frosting, I prepped the Green Bean Casserole for tomorrow. This is absolutely my favorite holiday recipe! I go ahead and put french fried onions on top too though. 😉 It’s all ready to go, so tomorrow I’ll just have to pop it in the oven!

And finally I prepped these little cuties. I assembled them – it was tricky! – and placed them in the freezer. Tomorrow when we sit down to dinner, I can pop them in the oven too. Here’s my attempt…

apple pie cookies

Apple Pie Cookies

I prefer the name mini apple pies. There’s nothing “cookie” about them!

If you celebrate, Merry Christmas! If not, I hope you have the day off and spend it exactly how you want too. Cheers!

Changes

The last few weeks have been some of the hardest I’ve ever had. I felt very rejuvenated during the last post, but by the end of that week, I was really struggling. Basically as soon as my husband and I started actively looking for a new place, anxiety set in in a very powerful way.  Normally when I’m anxious, my  work distracts me – Not this time. Panicky thoughts and physical discomfort found it’s way into my classroom, even though I had a concert and a competition to prepare for.

One sick day taken, a trip to Urgent Care and the ER, a concert, a competition, and a 36 hour whirlwind move later, here I am.  It seems like the anxiety likes to set in during the late afternoon and hang around until I’m ready to sleep.

Anxiety is such a strange phenomenon. How can something that feels so real, be a creation of my own mind? How can my emotional upheaval take over my body? And why oh why do the symptoms have to be the same as a heart attack, so every time I call a nurse hotline, they have to recommend I go to the emergency room?

The last few weeks have been the hardest for my marriage as well. This was the first difficult period when we, I guess because we were in such shock, didn’t cling to each other for comfort, but rather pulled away from each other. Not in a huge way, but the distance is noticeable.  Now that we have all of our things with us in our own home – no more bouncing between friends’ houses, living out of suitcases – I think we’ll find our way back. There is definitely already more communication and laughter.

Change is one of those things that gets  set into motion when you least expect it, and won’t budge into being when you most need it. I think it comes down to who is in control. When change is in control, it’s frustrating, maddening. But when we have the ability to make good changes happen, we’re hesitant to do so.

I think the build up of anxiety has a lot to do with me wanting control of this situation. Maybe in some twisted way, my sub-consciousness is saying, “Oh yeah? If I don’t have a say in this, I’ll just make you believe you’re physically ill, and there’s nothing you can do about it.”

The good news is, there is something I can do about it. I can acknowledge and let go of the feelings, redirect my thoughts, talk to friends, family, my therapist, go on long walks, DO YOGA, cook yummy food, go back to work, organize my house, love my husband, play with my dog…

Favorite recipe from this week: baked chicken legs.

Breathing until next time. 🙂