alyssa; currently living in athens, georgia; traveling everywhere; learning to like cats; writing, crafting, and living.
a very happy camper at Sprig Restaurant, Decatur.
life is good.
I’ve never made a New Years resolution that I remembered a month later, so last year I swore them off. This year is different, because my life is so different. I feel like this is the first year I can look back and see dramatic change in my priorities. I have found causes I am passionate about. I have decided the direction I want my career to take. And with these things in mind, I am committing to some lifestyle changes:
1. Eliminate food waste in my kitchen.
2. Plant a balcony garden. Keep the plants alive!
3. Do more arts and crafts, like building flower boxes.
4. Start writing again.
Living in Athens, I have had incredible access to local food, and I have completely changed the way I shop and eat. It would be too easy to say it is a “resolution” to eat locally, because I’ve already successfully made this a real lifestyle change. But, this has inspired my list of changes for 2013. I am so grateful for this fantastic community!
catchin’ up on tumblr, payin’ some bills, ate a box of mac and cheese, bought some goodies from Sephora (‘cause i’m finally 22!), updating my budget spreadsheet, and pal’n around with my sexy guy.
sometimes i like these quiet friday nights!
William, being a total cutie in Pienza, Italy.
Hiking to the thermal baths in Bagno Vignone.
Dinner last night in Montalcino.
William and his mother, laughing in Montalcino, Italy.
came home from work and went straight to an hour-long couple’s massage at the foundry spa, here in athens.
followed it up with a cold cider.
grilled fabulous filet mignons for dinner.
definitely adding dessert and “dessert” to this list by the end of the evening.
i love my life.
i just did this thing where i searched “cats” on tumblr and just browsed. who am i?
question for long-time cat lovers/ owners: how the hell do you deal with all the effing cat hair?
William has not been feeling well, the poor man! We’ve been talking about his symptoms, and I’m almost certain it has to do with dairy. When you research, even a little, into being gluten-free, it’s easy to see that there is a connection between intolerance to gluten, soy, and dairy.
I gather that the gluten and soy cause real, life-long aversions, and the dairy doesn’t work out because of damage to the villi in your intestines from having once eaten gluten. After about a year of going dairy-free, everything should have a chance to repair, and dairy can be introduced again. I’ve also heard that some people can just take a pill (Lactaid?) before eating dairy and the symptoms are prevented. I have doubts that this would do any service to the actual healing, though.
So after a week of being sick and bloated, we are cutting out dairy from his diet. I’m not saying I won’t eat it ever, but at least two meals a day that I eat with William will be dairy-free as well.
Tonight we had a salad with Brianna’s homestyle French vinaigrette dressing and a risotto dish I made up. For anyone interested in trying something gluten-free, recipe follows.
Tomato and Chicken Risotto
1 cup risotto
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pint water
2 lemons, juiced
1 small/medium shallot, quartered and thinly sliced
2 fresh tomatoes, diced
2 chicken breasts, diced and cooked
salt and pepper to taste.
Risotto is easy: Pan-sear it until toasted with shallots for 5 minutes on medium. Add water and lemon juice. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and add tomatoes. Cook chicken in a separate pan with salt and pepper. Stir risotto frequently until water is absorbed and it is creamy. Add cooked chicken and serve.
Risotto is great for gluten, soy and dairy-free diets, because the rice starch makes it naturally creamy, without having to add any type of milk or cream. We used to top these sort of dishes with lots of parmesan cheese, but it was honestly just as delicious without.
navigating gluten, soy, and now dairy-free
i’m challenging myself to going soy-free!
i’ve been bloated lately, always after eating things containing soy. i’m on a low-soy diet now, just as a byproduct of living with william, and eating food he eats. but when we eat out and i eat foods that contain soy oil (nacho chips, fries, movie popcorn, etc) i’ve been getting super bloaty.
next weekend, i’m jetting off to jersey to attend my cousin’s baptism. the French end of the family will be stateside, and i always get weight comments… so this is, admittedly, the very superficial reason i am cutting out soy completely. looking good is one thing, but feeling good is going to be something entirely better and much more important.
not the easiest challenge to face while traveling, but im going to do it. i bet it’ll change my perspective on food almost as much as going gluten-free has.
so when we are BBQ’n next door to joe jonas’ house (seriously), i’ll be looking healthy and happy, and feeling even better.
going soy free
will be making this for our upcoming housewarming party, completely gluten free and inspired by our favorite destination, Istanbul.
woke up at noon. made a Polish-style breakfast.
did a bit of cleaning, went out for coffee.
framed a vintage map of Istanbul, a late anniversary present for my man.
framed my signed Kurt Halsey print.
cleaned out my trunk.