Friday, January 30

Quinoa Paella Review

It smelled delicious.
It looked delicious.
The shrimp and the flavor was perfect.
The quinoa... Was still quinoa.
What is going on with that stuff and what exactly is it for real?
Why is it so good for you and why does the texture have to be so funky?
And where does one buy canned plum tomatoes?
I will definitely make this seafood paella again and I will definitely use rice.
Thank you My Food & Happiness for the inspiration!

When I went to see Wendy and her baby the other day I swung into Safeway on my way home.
I was in there for about fifteen minutes and when I came out my car battery was dead.
So I trolled the parking lot until I found a guy with a black box filled with miracles in the backseat of his car that started my car in less than sixty seconds, so when I got home I decided that I needed to fire up the Amazon Prime and get myself one of those boxes.
But then I started thinking... What if my battery needs to be replaced?
What if the battery is too far gone and the magic box will just be a repeated temporary fix?
So I decided to investigate.
My battery was seven years old.
Time for a new battery.
But my car was already an oversized driveway ornament and the farm truck that I would use to start the car has a dead battery too because I don't drive it enough and it's battery is probably a factory original from 1987 so I couldn't even get to town to buy a new one.
Super great.
I called Six.
Not because I wanted to, but because I had too and also because he OWES me.
Believe it or not he was here within an hour with a new battery and even took the old one out and put the new one in and the best part about it all was that he's really fat now.
Of course the part about my car running again was good too.
Did you know you're supposed to change your car batter every 3-4 years not every 7-8 years?
It's true. Otherwise they do stuff like quit working.
The other amazing fact about batteries is that when you have a good one things like your dash lights and head lights are brighter, so if you wanted to say, drive at night you totally could.
So I am now the knows a lot about septic systems and car batteries lady.
Completely self taught I might add.

I finished a rug I've started and ripped out at least thirtyfive-eleventeen times over the last year.
I finally decided on a rectangle in front of the sink or shower size when I usually do round in front of a chair or under a table size, but I really love how this one turned out.
I also REALLY love the sheets.
Absolute vintage seventies brown, orange, yellow and gold wide stripe pure cotton goodness.

And, It's dishcloth season!
I'll be hooking up a storm so get those dishes and counters ready, because everyone knows, springtime is new dishcloth time!

I'll have the Etsy store up and stocked by Monday, and just a little FYI, any fans of Wyatt's wire work will be happy to hear that he is stocked up and has some amazing rings and earrings to list too.

Ok, that's all.
Have a great weekend!


Thursday, January 29

Adventures In Quinoa

That is not the question, but more how I have felt about the weird little seed thingy that is all the rage, but I have decided I need to throw myself into this strange food and find something to like about it.
When my sister came to babysit me after my imploding arterial adventures last year, she left me with a Costco size bag of the stuff and it's been staring at me, taunting me and shaming me with my every reach past it to the Coco Puffs and Pop Tarts.

So the time has come to conquer the quinoa.
I have been spending a fair amount of time on the internets trying to find a recipe or two that combines my lifetime love of sugar, starch and spice and my new found vow to eliminate my lifetime love of sugar, salt and spice.
Remember I said yesterday how surprising it is how fresh foods and herbs can really shake up your pallet, but it's a slow process to completely relearn you ways of food preparation.

So with that said, here's a recipe I found at My Food & Happiness that I must say looks pretty amazing. I also think the rest of her blog is pretty enticing, so you might want to head over there after you leave here and see what else you can find.

Ok, so here's the recipe, Easy Seafood Paella.

Ummm, yeah, deelish, right?
The only thing I can imagine being wrong with this recipe would be the quinoa.
But I'm willing to give it a go and I'll review it tomorrow, and just remember, if I don't like it, it's only because of the... Quinoa.
This is really a HUGE step in my nutritional maturity.

I went to spend the day with Wendy and her three year old baby a day or so ago and while we were sitting on the couch discussing the latest Kardashian news the baby came up to me and said,
(thats what he calls me because he can't say his G's)
"Tranny! what happened to your face?!"
I pondered for a minute and replied,
"I don't know. What's the matter with my face?"
To which he said,
"Tranny you have to go to the doctor!"
Again I wondered what could be wrong with my face and looked at him with a rather befuddled look as he reached up and stuck his pointer finger in my squinting wrinkle right between my eyebrows at the top of my nose and the bottom of my forehead and said,
"There Tranny! Right there! Your face is broken!"
Real nice.
I wonder if there's a recipe for Botox on Pinterest.


Wednesday, January 28

Fat and Juicing Day 13

I failed at my 21 day juice fast.
I tried, I really did, but much like my blogging, I found it very hard to stick with.
But... I'm eating a really healthy diet now, and I believe my initial days of juicing helped me to achieve that.  I've stuck to a diet free of sugar, caffeine, wheat, soy and all processed food.
I'm eating buckets full of fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables and at least one or two proteins a day and I'm finding that it's way easier to stick with that and be happy than with a diet of just juice
(even if it was for only 21 days).
What can I say, I'm weak ;)
Quitting sugar is like quitting smoking I think, if not even a little harder.
I quit smoking eight years ago by just telling myself that smoking was gross, it smelled bad and it was bad for me. Maybe quitting sugar was harder because it didn't make me stink! For whatever reason, I made it through the quit, and now the hard part begins because sugar is in e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g.
I find that my shopping has changed more drastically that my eating habits, but I have to say, everything tastes so much better now and using fresh foods to flavor really outweighs any box you could ever add water to.
Try it, you'll like it.
I'm also in love with my NutriBullet.
Perfect for smoothies, soups and sauces. I'll see if I can start a bullet board on Pinterest so you can get some crazy good ideas.

I'm sleeping less and I'm less tired.
Go figure.

Old neighbor Butch was out to do some donkey foot work a few days ago.
We sure miss him and I guess at least if he had to move I'm glad I still have the donkeys to bring him back around on a regular basis.
I still cant walk the pasture without going into rotten heart mode, so Wyatt did the jackass round up with a heard of sheep at his heels wondering what was going on. Throw a dysfunctional Border Collie who has his own ideas of what herding and helping is and trust me, you have quite a show!
We decided to do the round-up early and got them into the pen by the gate at the bottom of the pasture so they would be easy access, and Jack, the (fun size) mini menace, decided to army crawl under the makeshift wire "gate" leaving Snowball our queen (King) size donk behind.
That's a man for you, see's his freedom closing in and makes a run for it.
He was pretty quick to return though with a shake of a bucket and the pleading gaze of his girl, and only put up a little fuss when it came to his overgrown feet.

Next up, the annual shearing of the sheep, also known as my least favorite part of sheep shepherding.
But that's at least a month away so I'll worry about that later.

The geese are sitting on eggs that I think will be hatching within the week.
Goslings are the best of times and the worst of times around here because we have to go on high coyote alert for weeks.
Geese are, without a doubt, the best parents on the farm.
WAY better than chickens, and even better than the sheep.
You probably already know this, but geese can be pretty fierce, ask anyone who's ever been goosed.

Here's a recipe for you from Chef In Trainingit looks SO delicious!
I guarantee this will be in my crock pot before the week is over.

Chef In Training


Wednesday, January 21

Fat and Juicing and Other Stuff Day 6

Wow, I have to say, so far this has been an amazing experience.
After six days, most of my joint pain is gone. I still have the pain in my ankles in the morning, but I think that is due more to being fat than anything else.
My hips and knees feel great.
Also, I 'm still sleeping like a rock and feeling really clear when I wake up, and let me tell you, that may be the biggest gift of all.
I don't have the huge amounts of energy yet like I thought I would, but that is probably because of my rotten heart and has nothing to do with my diet.
Who knows.

I have slowly introduced some protein.
Lean organic red meat, chicken, some fish (fresh or Costco white albacore tuna) and of course my personal favorite, lentils. Not a lot of protein, just one a day and I have decided that when I go back to my regular every day diet, I will be a "clean eater".
No processed foods, no refined sugars and for me, especially, no gluten. I'm not a celiac and probably not even gluten intolerant but I think I have a HUGE problem with inflammation, and because of my rotten heart, exploding arteries and arthritis, inflammation is not my friend and Wonder Bread and Pop Tarts seem to really poke the inflaming bear.
So no gluten.
From what I've been reading about clean eating, it's pretty basic, don't eat crap.
I can do that.
I'm starting a Pinterest board that will have recipes and ideas, so follow that for some inspiration.

Egg Nog, the Christmas chic that Millie decided she had to hatch in the dead of winter is on the pasture. Of course when he hatched my brooding room was filled with everything except room for a chic so he hung out with his mother in the pig house and then migrated to the dog house after his mother split. We turned the heat lamp off yesterday and he is out in the big world fending for himself now. He's little like his mother, a Mille De Fleur, but red like his dad a Rhode Island Red. So he's a little red speckled, feathered footed roo. Very cute.
I think he's going to grow up and look similar to this.

I woke up yesterday to a heard of sheep in the yard.
Wyatt claims that Bell, the boss sheep figured out the latch on the gate.
I say he left the gate open when he closed up the chickens the night before.
Bell's not talking.

I spent the day with Wendy and the Very Bad Baby yesterday.
You'll be pleased to know that even at three, he is still a very bad baby.
I think Wendy is in waaaay over her head with this kid and I'm also half convinced that he has her outsmarted and outfoxed most of the time.
She stepped out to the driveway to meet us yesterday and he ran around behind her locking the doors.
Oh well, you know what they say, payback is a bitch, and she sure paid me back for the torment I caused my family, but it is so fun watching the hand of fate play out with her!
I've got his number though, the biggest part of his bad babiness is his charm, and once he turns that on you're in big trouble and better just buckle up and hang on.
Now, if we could all just figure out how to resist that charm...


Friday, January 16

Fat and Juicing Day 2

So far easy peasy. Seriously, this is way easier than I thought it was going to be. I think Maybe it's because I prepped by quitting caffeine, carbs and Benadryl leading up to the juicing. I swear, I'm sleeping really well and waking up really clear, and I totally believe that is due to the lack of Benadryl. I was taking three a night to get to sleep and then drinking coffee and tea for half the day to get going again.
So there's that.

The juicing yesterday was great.

I started out with a spinach, grapefruit, orange, apple, pear and ginger juice.
So good.
I did leave the rind on my citrus which I won't do again. Too bitter.
For lunch I had a kale, celery, apple, pear and carrot. Really good, and one I will repeat for sure.
For dinner I made a huge pot of vegetable soup (I'm not sure if that's reboot or not). Celery, carrots, onions, garlic, cabbage, a huge can of crushed tomatoes and some vegetable broth. Again, so good and I will eat it for a few days. After my soup I had a big fruit smoothie with strawberry, mango, pineapple, raspberry, blackberry, blueberry and spinach. I was so full for the rest of the night, I felt like I had just finished Thanksgiving dinner.
Interesting fact: I was not hungry at all through the night, and I am known for my midnight kitchen tours. Sandwiches, bowls of cereal, half a cake, a dozen cookies, you know, something to hold me over until 5-6:00 AM when I wake up.

Let me tell you another  benefit of this juicing business, Wyatt is REALLY into it.
Who would have thought he would be interested in something healthy, I thought he was a straight up frozen burrito kind of guy. I guess I shouldn't say that, he has been really interested in cooking the last few weeks and has made some pretty amazing meals.

Something that came to me yesterday after I posted, was that I just got over having strep throat, so this was an easy time for me to transition my eating habits. I had already lost five pounds the week I was sick, so to just keep riding that train was a lot easier than buying the whole railroad.
I just want to make sure that I don't come across sounding like this is all a walk in the park. I liken it to quitting smoking after being pregnant, you quit because you just don't pick up a cigarette again. I had already quit eating all the crappy carbs and sugar (and everything else) while I was sick and then I just didn't start again.

Another important thing to point out, is that I spent a good amount of time in the bathroom yesterday. so If you're a flagger or professional ice skater, you may want to wait until you have a day or two off to start this. All that juice really goes through a person.

Now, since this is the Fat Bottom Farm Blog I'll tell you a farm story.

We have a huge problem with coyotes around here. Huge. So every morning I take a head count to make sure that everyone is safe and accounted for. I have already lost two lambs and last spring I lost a peacock and quite a few geese. Three mornings ago I kept coming up a sheep short. Every time I would see them in the pasture I would count again and still one short. I did a quick walk around and still, one short.
The next morning, same thing, and all through the day, one short.
I leave a light on in the barn along with a radio to try and help detur the coyotes and yesterday I realized the radio had gone off so I walked up to see if it had come unplugged or just worn itself out. Once I was up there, I decided I would take a walk to the pasture back behind the barn to see if that little sheep had found a hole in the fence and slipped through where he wasn't supposed to be, but as I walked down the length of the barn I heard the little bugger calling out from one of the side rooms. Behind a closed door.
Somehow, he pushed through a loose board to get into the barn and then walked into the side room and when he turned around to come out he closed the door on himself. Let me tell you, that was one happy sheep when I opened that door! He took off to the rest of the herd with quite a story to tell, and he started telling it the minute his feet hit the grass!
I'm sure glad that story had a happy ending :)


Thursday, January 15

Fat and Juicing

Hi, I'm back.

Ok, this is going to be big, and when I say big, I mean really effing big.

Due to my rotten heart and all around sloth like condition, I have decided to make 2015 the year of improved existence, beginning with a Joe Cross, you're huge, gross and ready to croak juice reboot.
I already had the Acme 6000 juicer, but I also picked up a Nutribullet to mix things up a little.

First stop, Costco, where I threw down part of the kids college fund on every fresh and frozen fruit and vegetable I could get my hands on, including a military size bag of spinach, lettuce, apples, peppers, well you get where this is going... On the way home we swung into the root and berry stand and picked up all the smaller miscellaneous items like beets, kale, ginger, the tops of stuff and some other stuff. I forgot coconut water though so when I take the dog to town to be washed today I need some of that.

I have been kind of getting ready for this by cutting out food that wasn't exactly what you would call prime nutrition, like breads, cereals and desserts. That wasn't too hard because remember, I don't do a whole lot because I'm huge, gross and ready to croak. The little exercise I do get is walking around doing a few farm chores, going out to the road for mail and chasing after the very bad baby when he's here. The house is an old barn so it's huge, and tasks like vacuuming take the better part of the day if done correctly (which it seldom is) but the kid does all of that since I'm not supposed to push or pull anything bigger than a fork or toothbrush.
*Just kidding, but don't tell the kid who vacuums my house.

I also picked up some Croc faux Go Walks. The Go Walks were more cash than I was willing to part with for a pair of shoes, but the Crocs came in at about 25.00, and with Prime they were free to the door in two days. Can't beat that, and, I figured I could get my money out of those, and they look like basically the same thing. They are soooo comfortable, they're a shoe I would wear even if I was going to stay fat, but the plan is to use them for good.

I stopped using Benadryl to go to sleep and caffeine to get me up again.
This was very hard to do. I may have even cried a little.

Here goes.
I'm not posting any pictures until I have a satisfactory "after" picture, but I will tell you my stats...

I am 5'4 and weigh 216 pounds.
I take 8 different medications 2 times a day and Nitro for my heart as needed.
I have neuropathy in my right leg and foot from herniated discs, spinal stenosis and degenerative disc disease resulting in 2 back surgeries and the doctor wanting to do a spinal fusion.
I have a sliding hiatal hernia the size of the grand canyon that is causing compression to both my heart and lungs.
Pain in my major joints, hips, knees and ankles
And then of course my two big rotten vascular issues, but I don't expect a change in diet to affect those, but I do expect better health to better my all around.
My alllllllllllll around.

There you have it. Day one of twenty one.

Wish me luck.