Wednesday, November 7, 2012

WIAW #26 - Hurricane Sandy + A New Outlook

Wow... it's been over a week since my last post, and I haven't even done WIAW in two weeks!
Why, you ask? (I hope...!)

Well, I'm almost positive all of you know about Hurricane Sandy and it's destruction to the east coast... preferably to the shore of New Jersey? I actually live about 10 minutes off-shore, and my town got pretty banged up. Over 60,000 people just from my town had lost power, and my family JUST got power and heat back yesterday. We, successfully, went almost 9 full days without power or heat... And I'm pretty proud of that!

Being deprived of electricity taught me a lot of things. One of those things is definitely to not take so much for granted anymore. My warm bed, the microwave... those things I didn't really care to acknowledge enough to appreciate before, I appreciate more than ever now. Thankfully we have a gas stove (two, actually), or I'm pretty sure we wouldn't have survived the storm! Haha. We used a lighter to carefully light it (it's electrically powered), and we made the most of what we had. I didn't feel like I HAD to go on my computer. I didn't feel as helpless as I thought I'd feel without any electricity. I learned how to use a kettle (yay, tea!), make my own successful workout circuits (which turned out to be some of my favorite workouts yet. So relaxing to do in mostly quiet!), eat healthy without having to eat completely fresh, and how to treat myself without regretting it. Without power, I, for some reason, grasped onto intuitive eating a lot easier than when I had it. I ate what I wanted, and I felt more body-positive than I have in a long time. I didn't feel obligated to eat certain things because I was so limited to what I could have. I didn't feel overwhelmed. I just kinda went with it all.

Some meals I consumed through the power-less 9 days:
Big salad with hard boiled eggs (2 whole), chickpeas, honey turkey, a mini piece of grilled chicken and vegetables. Dressing was hot sauce, salsa + plain Greek yogurt.
Pumpkin egg white oatmeal with protein cereal (plus some Cinnamon Toast Crunch) + pumpkin flax granola + banana slices + plain Chobani + cinnamon, all inside a nearly-empty Biscoff spread jar.
Pumpkin cheesecake and gingerbread cheesecake cookies (omg so good!! Me and my mom split them.) and a mini Almond Joy.
Take 5 protein egg white oats with protein & regular cereals + slivered almonds + pretzel pieces + banana slices + plain & caramel Chobani Greek yogurt + White Chocolate Wonderful! And an extra splash of unsweetened original Almond Breeze.
Candle-lit breakfast-for-dinner with mommy and sissy!
Clean and healthy "Almond Joy" pancakes with a big egg white protein scramble! And some of my favorite sugar cookie tea!
Banana split egg white oatmeal with cereals (protein & regular) + plain Chobani Greek yogurt + cinnamon + banana slices + Dark Chocolate Dreams PB + shredded coconut + healthy protein chocolate sauce + a mini sprinkle of some sprinkles and Fruity Pebbles for color! Oh, and an extra dash of unsweetened original Almond Breeze.
Low calorie, high protein pumpkin protein pancakes (recipe adapted from Powercakes!) layered with peanut butters, cereals, banana slices, and cinnamon roll protein cream, all topped with healthy and clean chocolate sauce!
Could NOT pass these up for $1.99! Caramel apple flavored Milky Ways. 
S'mores protein egg white oatmeal with cereals + banana slices + plain Greek yogurt + mini marshmallows/a bit of Marshmallow Fluff, all inside a nearly empty White Chocolate Wonderful jar.
Even though I've been treating myself like crazy lately, my mom bought a discounted bag of my all-time favorite chocolate candy — Take 5 chocolate bars.
I literally almost cried when I saw she had gotten them because I was frustrated since I wanted them SO bad for SO long, but I haven't had the courage to treat myself to one in over a year... BUT! After my {big and filling!} candle-lit dinner with my family, we all decided to have a small piece of chocolate... to cleanse our pallets, ya know? Haha. I treated myself to a small Take 5 bar, and guess what? It was just as amazing as I remember, and I didn’t magically gain 70 lbs back because of it. It’s ridiculous to think that way, and I can only help this will help inspire all of you who suffer from those thoughts to not be afraid to treat yourselves, too. I feel, not “fat” (though there’s worse things to be and feel), but content and free. I’ve been loving treating myself lately, and I’m feeling more body-positive today than I have in a LONG time. I don’t call it “cheating”, I call it “TREATING”. “Cheating” sounds so negative and I hate it. The end.
Fluffy pumpkin spice egg white oatmeal with my new gluten-free and nut-free natural crunchy chocolate granola (AMAZING, cheap Big Lots find! I’m obsessed! The serving is 1/2 c for 160 calories, too! I have no allergies but it’s still amazing) + cereals + banana slices + plain Greek yogurt + a little bit of Biscoff spread + a mini gingerbread man, ainside a nearly (and basically) empty Cinnamon Raisin Swirl jar!

(Note: ALL of my family (there's 5 of us) eats these nut butters... Not just me! I promise I don't finish these jars all by myself, haha. They take 2-3 weeks to finish normally with all of us eating them.)
My delicious post-workout lunch! Higher in calories, but who cares?
Swiss & feta turkey grilled cheese on soft light wheat bread, tomato & basil soup with some spicy Mrs. Dash, and a big ol’ plate of steamed vegetables with plain Greek yogurt + ranch to dip. I like me some soft veggiez.
Warm chocolate protein egg white oatmeal with gluten-free/nut-free chocolate granola + cereals + banana slices + plain Greek yogurt + shredded coconut + Biscoff spread & White Chocolate Wonderful + a dollop of cinnamon roll protein “cream” + a mini gingerbread man.
Probably one of the best bowls of oats I've had!

{I guess this can count as a WIAW post now... Hurricane Sandy edition!}

Though me and my mom jumped and screamed when we finally got power back (ironically enough, me, her and my little sister had left to get hand warmers since it was 57 degrees in my house, and we came back to power!), it was nice living without it for awhile. It taught me to appreciate a lot more, and it made me spend a lot more time with my family. (And I mean A LOT more!) In a way, Hurricane Sandy was somewhat of a blessing... at least to my family. My mom got to have some time off of work (even though we desperately need the money, she works on birthdays, holidays... everything. Since she works off-line, though, both of her jobs were closed, and she was unable to get on anyways), and we got to have a lot of mother-daughters time. (Me, her and my sister, that is!) I cringe when I see what happened to my poor boardwalk and the homes surrounding it, but it's all nothing time can't fix. The most important thing is no one got hurt. People I know who lost their houses (or at least some of their belongings) are being sheltered for free, and they're all okay. Maybe not completely mentally, but time will fix that. They're alive, their families are alive, and that's all that should really matter. We're lucky Hurricane Sandy was only a category 1 hurricane (or "super-storm")!

A big factor in staying positive and, you know, sane through all of this, was actually my little sister. She was the one I was most worried about (aside from my mom since she can't make income without the computer, haha), but she was actually the most positive. She's 11-years-old (almost 12! My little girl's growing up so fast!), and she's autistic, but she stayed happy. She made the most of what she had (no TV, no iPhone, no laptop, no iPod or iPad... just my mom's Kindle!), and she didn't complain even once. She barely even cried until the last few days when she was starting to get frustrated, which makes sense. She was more happy to be off of school than anything! Haha. I swear, that little girl was born with invisible angel wings. She's a blessing.

P.S. A week and two days after a hurricane, and it's SNOWING! AHHHH!! This makes me even more excited for the holidays! I can't believe Thanksgiving is so soon!

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