Waking with the Sun

Another early start to the day. Since I have a meeting at 7:30 (to discuss a possible Renaissance Faire in Green Bay this year!!!), it wasn’t a travesty that I couldn’t sleep past 5:00am.

Instead, I decided to put the extra time to use and prep a dinner for myself again tonight. (Dave didn’t eat his stuffed pepper from last night’s dinner yet, citing extreme tiredness–the poor guy probably flopped into bed soon after returning home). I decided to play around with an elusive protein whose many powers I have yet to unlock: tofu.

While I’ve used tofu to make smoothies before, I never understood why others could bake and fry tofu in a frenzy and mine just flopped around like a jello jiggler. This was before I realized that tofu actually has to be prepared for perfect consumption. Ah. I can do that.

I followed a few internet tricks:

Yes, sandwiched somewhere between two folded paper towels, a plate, a pan, and a can of pinto beans is a block of firm tofu. I let this sit for about 40 minutes to extract most of the extra water floating around in the block.

Then, following another trick, I sliced the tofu into eight chunks and put it in the freezer to give it better texture. I’ll take it out before I go to work and put it in a marinade. Later, you will see some (hopefully) delicious baked tofu!

*****

After freezing the tofu, it was time to get moving, despite a favorite excuse: I’m too tired.  I already know all the excuses for not exercising. Besides being too tired, I’m too busy. It’s boring. My back hurts. I have no one to watch my kids. I’m already thin. I’m already too fat. I am not Richard Simmons.

There are one thousand, four hundred and forty minutes in a day. You can make thirty minutes for yourself. If you’re tired, exercise will wake you up. If you think it’s boring, find one of the many exercises that don’t bore you, or go with a non-boring friend. If your back hurts–that’s because you’re not already exercising. (Exercising prevents back pain. If your back already hurts, start slow, and look up exercises that will help, not hurt your back). If you have kids, take them on a walk with you…or go rollerblading. Or biking. If you are thin, you can still be unhealthy. You are not too fat to exercise. Sorry, you’ll never be Richard Simmons; but you can be a fantastic version of yourself.

I’ve used so many of these excuses before. The Richard Simmons one nearly stopped me from trying altogether. Even though I was tired this morning, exercise has become a habit again, and I was…wait for it…actually looking forward to Jillian Michaels’ ‘Ripped in 30’ today. It went by much faster, I felt stronger, and I didn’t even feel like passing out afterwards! Baby steps, folks.

Even though I’m not ready for breakfast, I wanted a snack before the meeting.

An apple sprinkled with cinnamon.

My mom, sister Emily and I met one of the owners at The Mustard Seed Cafe, a place with a fantastic array of unique and incredible foods. After two hours of sipping coffee and water (they even put fancy lemons in the water),

we decided to eat breakfast there as all our excitement talking about a Renaissance Faire came to a close.

Emily and I both ordered the “Bowl of Plenty: A Bowl of Sautéed Spinach, Carrots, Zucchini, Tomatoes, Cabbage, Scallion & Mushroom Seasoned with Garlic & Herbs, Topped with Two Poached Eggs:”

I got my veggies in early for the day! It came with two slices of toast (I ordered multigrain) and a watermelon slice. The veggie bowl is not something I would ordinarily think of for breakfast, but it’s so fantastic–proof of the chef’s abilities!

I ate half of the ‘bowl of plenty,’ one egg, one piece of toast and my watermelon slice (plus my mom’s, because she hates watermelon). I packaged up the rest to take home!

Mom ordered the same thing she always does:

The veggie quiche with a freshly baked muffin and side of fruit. She’s in love with this quiche.

I’m heading to work in a little while, and I already feel like I had a whole day! It’s so gorgeous outside, I wish I could have spent it bumming around with Emily. But, alas, work calls to me…

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