Posted in Health

Today’s Doctor Visit

Well, I finally went to the doctor today. Actually, I ended up at the emergency room on this past Saturday for very a  sharp pain in my left side. They initially thought I might have a kidney stone, so they did a CT scan. There were no stones, but they found a cyst on my left kidney. And that is why I was in the doctor’s office today following up.

I think we’ve determined that I had a muscle spasm as far as the pain in my side which stemmed from an area in my lower back. However, my doctor has scheduled a full work up of my kidneys to determine if there is something serious is going on there. I think it is probably nothing and hopefully, the test will bear that out.

The CT scan on Saturday also showed something on my left lung. We will be checking this out as well. Both items are very very small. They just want to make sure nothing serious is going on.

So, I covet any prayers. But again, I’m not worried that they are going to find anything serious going on.

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Posted in Diet

200th Post

This is my 200th post. Unfortunately, I am reporting that I have been off my diet for a couple of days. Ever now and then I get these urges for high carb sugary foods. I can’t seem to resist when the urge comes. I have learned not to get upset when it happens. It’s just a thing that happens sometimes.s

So 200! This is actually the first time I have made it to 200 posts, and this is my newest blog. ToneLovette may seem newer, but, it just took me some time to decide what the blog would be. Faithlovengrace is my oldest blog. However, as I’ve grown in this area of my life my mind has changed about a lot of things. Many of the post I have removed because I no longer believe what I had written. Faithlovengrace had been online since 2005 on its own server but has recently been moved to wordpress.com.

I had hoped I would be reporting more success than I have accomplished in my 200th post. However, I have a long way to go to reach my goal. Perhaps by post 300 things will be different. Until then I will keep working.

Tomorrow I will be back on track with my diet. Even though I have been fairly consistent with it I still have not lost any more weight. I will have to make some adjustments somewhere. And I definitely have to figure out how to get more exercise.

 

 

Posted in Favorite Recipes

Marinated Skirt Steak

Marinated Skirt Steak is one of my favorites. I mainly use it for fajitas. This marinade recipe comes from Epicurious.com. I used it a few days ago and it is quite tasty. Here it is:

Ingredients

3/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup corn oil or other neutral oil such as grapeseed or canola
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
2 shallots, roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro leaves
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon kosher salt
4 pounds skirt steak, cleaned of all exterior fat and connective tissue

Directions

1) Put all ingredients except the steak in a blender and blend until smooth.

2)Pour the marinade over the skirt steak in a nonreactive pan.

3)Break Point

4)Marinate, refrigerated, for 3 to 4 hours before grilling, but no more than 10 hours.

5)When ready to cook the steaks, prepare your grill for grilling.

6)Remove the skirt steak from the marinade and clean away any excess marinade with the back of a knife.

7)Grill the steak over medium-high heat for 4 to 5 minutes per side to serve it rare to medium-rare.

8)When cooked, slice the steak thinly against the grain, starting at one corner and cutting on the bias. Serve either hot or at room temperature.

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Posted in Diet

Extreme Pain

I may end up in a doctor’s before too long. This morning something in my lower back moved, and I have been in pain ever since. I don’t know what it is but hurts. It is a deep but vague pain. And if I move the wrong way it is a very sharp pain.

I am really irritated.

Posted in Favorite Recipes

Braised Red Cabbage

By Chef John

This was one of the best things I learned to make in culinary school. Not this exact recipe, however, it was very close. I trust Chef John. I haven’t come across one of his recipes that I haven’t like yet. And BRAISED RED CABBAGE IS THE BOMB! I think you will enjoy this as much as I did.

Ingredients for 4-6 portions:

2 tbsp butter
1 small Red cabbage, sliced thin, about a 1 1/4 pounds
1/3 cup water
1/4 cup red wine
2 tbsp red wine vinegar, or to taste
2 tbsp white sugar
pinch of caraway seeds
salt and pepper to taste
*Note: there are SO many ways to tweak this recipe! Raisins, currants, shallots, onions, leeks, apples, and pears are just a few things that rock in this recipe.
Posted in Diet

The Makeover Continues

I am holding pretty steady on my diet. I am not cheating as much as I have been all year. At least that is what I thought. Even though I thought I was not cheating by not eating foods outside my diet most of the time, I think I was consuming too many calories. Still, haven’t gained weight, but I haven’t lost any weight either.

Today I went back to using myfitnesspal to track my meals and macronutrients. And as I suspected I ended up eating way less food. So even though I was eating the right foods I had forgotten what the right amounts of food looked like. It was just too much of everything, especially proteins. And proteins in excess can break down into sugars, raising blood sugar.

I am not on a high protein diet. It’s a high-fat diet. The idea behind the keto-diet is to get the body to use fat for fuel. Giving it too much of anything, whether carbs or proteins can result in higher sugar levels in the body, hindering efforts. My goal is to consume 75% fats (the good stuff), 20% proteins, and 5% carbs. This diet works well.

Even though I have not followed my diet very well I still have not gained all the weight I lost last year. I am still 22 pounds under my starting weight. My immediate weight-loss goal is 10 pounds. I think I can do that in 2 months if I can stick to my diet. Right now I’m 245 lbs. I would like to be at 235 lbs. by the end of June. That’s only 5 pounds per month (1.25 pounds per week).

My overall goal weight is 165 pounds. I still believe I can achieve it. I am very excited to still be in this “tltatemakeover.

Posted in Health

Awake Again

Lately, I have been able to sleep again at nights when I am supposed to be. For the longest time, probably 2 years, I have suffered insomnia. No matter how I tried I could not fall asleep at night. And then, of course, I couldn’t stay awake during the day. Pretty soon it became kind of permanent. I didn’t think I’d ever get back on track.

I don’t know what happened recently, but for the last 3 weeks or so I have been going to bed kind of early (before 11). For the most part, I have remained asleep for most of the night.

I am pleased to be awake with most of the rest of the world. It is an awful thing to be awake at a time when nothing is open and everyone you know is asleep.

Actually, it may have been the music practice. While I was still awake at nights I started practicing the saxophone at around 4 in the morning. Several times I got so into it that I was staying awake later and later in the mornings. Normally I’d be falling asleep around 8 in the morning. The more I practiced, the later I stayed awake in the mornings. Then I was staying awake into the afternoons. I guess before I knew what I was doing I had reversed my sleep schedule.

It has been easier to stay on my diet as well. I had not made the connection until now. I have also resumed losing weight. Probably due to access to more activities now that I’m awake a the right time of the day.

How ever I got here I’m glad to be back on the day shift. I’m glad to be practicing music again. Soon I hope to be reaching new levels on the saxophone. And of course, I intend to continue regaining my health through diet and exercise.

 

Posted in Diet

Progress?

I don’t know. I am eating things not on my diet, but not over doing it. I have stopped stressing over it but I haven’t given up. I don’t know yet. Well, probably won’t give up. I don’t want to be sick or fat. Lol!

I have not gained any weight. I still haven’t restarted my walking habit yet. I think it is mostly because I have new toys in the house. I now have two new saxophones and I usually spend most of the day playing one or the other. At times I think I am getting better at it. You may see for yourself if you’d like>>>

I do need to start getting more exercise though. There is no way around that, especially if I’m not (right now at least) being more strict with my diet.

Pain levels in my back are still the same but I’m dealing with it. Anyway, just checking in on this Sunday afternoon.

Posted in Diet

Osso Bucco

This is also a recipe from my previous school. We served it with the Risotto a la Milanese, a recipe I shared a few days ago. I am sure you will enjoy this dish. It is a very good and tasty dish, especially with the risotto.

Ingredients:

VEAL SHANK 8 PCS –2” thick
FLOUR FOR DUSTING
S&P TO TASTE
OLIVE OIL 4 OZ
MIREPOIX, BRUNOISE 4 OZ (1/2 diced onion, 1/4 diced carrot, 1/4 celery)
2 – 3 Cloves garlic, minced
white wine 4 OZ
tomato puree 2 OZ
veal stock 1 PINT
bouquet garni 1 EA ( fresh thyme, parsley, bay leaf and any other herbs you like, bundled together with butcher’s twine)
parsley 2 TBSP
lemon juice 1 OZ

GREMOLATA: PARSLEY, CHOPPED 1 TBSP
GARLIC MINCED 1 CLOVE
LEMON ZEST, GRATED 1 LEMON

Directions:

  1. SEASON AND FLOUR SHANKS.  SAUTE IN HOT OIL.  REMOVE FROM PAN.
  2. ADD MIREPOIX, SAUTE 2 – 3 MINUTES.  ADD GARLIC AND SAUTE LIGHTLY.
  3. ADD WINE AND REDUCE AU SEC.
  4. ADD TOMATO PUREE AND STIR.  ADD VEAL STOCK AND BRING TO A BOIL.  PUT VEAL SHANKS BACK IN PAN.  LIQUID SHOULD COME AT LEAST HALFWAY UP PRODUCT.
  5. ADD BOUQUET GARNI AND COVER.  SIMMER VEAL SHANKS FOR 30 MINUTES.
  6. ADD THE LEMON and PARSLEY.  CONTINUE TO SIMMER UNTIL THE SHANKS ARE VERY TENDER.
  7. REMOVE BOUQUET GARNI AND VEAL SHANKS.  STRAIN THE SAUCE OVER THE SHANKS AND GARNISH WITH THE GREMOLATA.

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Posted in Favorite Recipes

Risotta a la Milanese

I learned this particular recipe at school. We served it with Osso Bucco, an Italian braised beef shank dish. It was quite delicious. It was a special interest culinary class focused on Italian cuisine.

Ingredients:

1 Small Onion, finely chopped
4 Tbsp of Unsalted Butter
1 Tbsp of Olive oil
1 cup of Arborio Rise or Risotto Rice
½ cup of White Wine
4 Cups of Chicken Stock might need a bit more
½ cup of Freshly Grated Parmiggiano Reggiano
½ tsp of Saffron Threads
Salt and Pepper To Taste

Directions:

1) In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add the chicken stock and saffron and bring to a simmer, turn the heat down to low and let it sit there as you make the risotto.

2) In a large deep saucepan, large enough to hold the risotto and all the broth, add the oil and onions, season with salt and pepper and cook them over medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes or until the onions start to soften.

3) Add the white wine and cook it for 1 minute. Once the wine has reduced, add a ladle full of the chicken stock, making sure that most of that liquid has cooked out before adding another ladle full. Continue adding chicken stock one ladle full at a time until the rice is mostly cooked though. This can take up to 20 minutes.

4) Once the rice is just about cooked all the way, add one more ladle full of chicken stock along with the butter and Parmigiano. Stir everything together and adjust the seasoning to taste. Serve it right away!

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