Hello Southern Hemispherites!!

This topic contains 23,359 replies, has 802 voices, and was last updated by  CalifDreamer 2 hours, 28 minutes ago.

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  • Brief check-in.

    Enjoy your cycling, Neilithicman.

    Penguin, glad the water is gradually clearing, and at least we have the benefit of more of your wise penguin words.

    Thin, sounds like a great concert, so well worth going.

    LJoyce, I’m hoping for a good result on the scales tomorrow morning. I was under the dreaded 80 mark this morning (79.9! 🙂 ) so I’ve lost 3.2 kg so far this month. Hoping for more by tomorrow’s weigh-in, and a bit more before I see my doctor on Thursday. He was pleased that I’d lost weight, so it will be good not to be too heavy when I see him.

    My back’s been bothering me since I tried on a bunch (read – a lot) of summer clothes today and chose 11 discards to go to the op shop. My wardrobe still looks packed, but can’t be as bad as it was. What I really need re clothes is a few more winter tops, but it’s a bit early to be buying them. I have way more summer than winter clothes, but now I’m not working in air-conditioning/ heating, I have to dress more for the external temperature. Anyway, re the back, I’ll see my physio on Tuesday. He does a great job of keeping my back in good order.

    And that’s it from me till next time. Goodnight all.

    Good morning,
    Saturday fast day, but I am a bit tired after such a fun, but maybe too long, grandma kinder yesterday.

    Cali, such a good tip to photograph the number on the computer box. You will laugh to know that I have the number written in my little notebook in my top desk drawer, next to the service provider help line number. And I also worked out that the problem was probably due to a big rainfall as we have a node system involving pits along the roads that rain can get into. It is just that my adrenalin gland works faster than my brain!

    LJoyce, congratulations on getting those cucumbers brined and pickled. And woohoo for lovely Canada, the trip is falling nicely into place! And a good week of fasts. Ooh yes, aren’t you lucky to have the Adelaide Festival at your doorstep, I hope it was a great night.

    Betsy, I bet it feels lovely getting that summer washing done. (Reminder to self, wash those quilts!). Congratulations on the nice pile of tops to go the opshop, but how cruel that trying them on was enough to exacerbate your back issue. So glad you have a good physio to go to.

    Thin, I am glad the concert was so wonderful, with you in your newly acquired trousers and what? thongs on your feet?

    Neil you are so right that it is our mistakes and unplanned events that make us who we are.
    Melbourne is a sleet town too, although it is mostly from my childhood I remember it. Walking to school through it.
    I am thinking of you pedalling uphill today, and when it is most wearing, looking forward to tomorrow when you can coast down.
    I love that there is a place called Middlemarch in NZ.

    Penguin, such awful damage from the floods, and my heart goes out to everyone cleaning up, it is such a miserable, dank, smelly job.

    Well, it is a beautiful morning here, and while I am not really in the mood for fasting, it is only one day.

    Sending good wishes to you all.

    PS I made my zucchini and meatballs dish that is one of my staples when I am growing zucchinis. https://imgur.com/a/dmdPAAW

    Oh my! So many posts since I last checked in! It’s good to know that this forum has a healthy participation rate!

    Thanks to all who welcomed me with messages. I don’t mind if you shorten my username to CatLady/catlady or CLBW/clbw. I chose my username because, since adopting a couple of cats in 2010, I love cats. One cat since passed away due to a hypo (he had diabetes) that happened in the middle of the night while I was sleeping so I wasn’t able to get him to a vet fast enough to save him. My other cat is female and so far very healthy. I added ‘bookworm’ because so many forums already have the username ‘CatLady’ taken. Plus I love books. I used to work in a library until I had to quit to look after my dad who has Parkinson’s Disease.

    Betsylee, I can certainly relate to having too many books. I keep them under control by limiting them to two bookcases. If I buy a new book and my bookcases are full, I have to get rid of a book to make room for it. I used to buy books faster than I could read them and eventually I would lose interest in some that I had not even read yet because they would become dated. I got rid of any that I admitted to myself I was never going to get around to reading. These days I try to get books at the library first, that way if I don’t end up reading it, I haven’t lost any money. Some books, though, I HAVE to have! I also have an Amazon Kindle that allows me to buy lots of e-books that don’t take up any room. I have to get back into the habit of reading library books by the due date. Years of buying books has spoiled me in this regard. I’ve gotten used to reading more than one book at a time and taking as long as I like.

    I must check in more often. I’d like to join in more in the discussions but today I am a bit overwhelmed at the number of posts I need to catch up on!

    Not thongs Cinque but the next worst thing, tennis shoes! They’re black so less noticeable, until they developed a hole in the left toe revealing the red tip on my sock. The couple seated behind us were travelling from Nebraska. He wore a sports coat which prompted me to try and visualise their luggage. They did mention that they’d been unable to get their suitcases up the narrow stairs to their accommodation.

    Neil I loved your philosophy on life.

    clbw, I found it difficult to cull books. But cleansing once I did.

    Carnaval is on. Catalonians have a strong sense of humour if last night’s parade is anything to go by. I enjoyed a firework breathing dragon and the street-cleaners’ float – a giant rubbish bin with body parts sticking out of it. And the medics’ one with everyone covered in blood doing some bizarre Rocky Horror Picture Show dance. Bursts of loud music and lots of colour.

    I wonder how you apply for this job: “After a morning dedicated to children, one of the traditional Carnaval festival figures appears – the Moixó Foguer, a naked character covered in honey and feathers who, coming out of an eye-catching decorated box, takes the opportunity to sprinkle them wherever he goes.” Looking forward to that one today.

    Good morning all.

    Happy morning as I fitted comfortably into a shirt that was too tight to get on a few weeks ago.

    Thin, I’m trying hard not to imagine the naked honey covered person sprinkling feathers. How on earth did that become a tradition – imitating a chicken in moult?

    Cinque, that photo! I was drooling and immediately felt like meatballs. I do use grated zucchini in my meatballs, but it hadn’t occurred to me to add chunks to the pot. I’m going to have to try that.

    CatLady, good to hear from you again. This forum can go to extremes. Sometimes it’s very quiet and other times chatty. Just pop in when you want and don’t feel you have to catch up with all the conversations.
    Hope you are still going well with 5:2

    Betsy, clearing out some clothing and losing more weight are excellent things. Stirring up your bad is not so good. I hope you have some tricks to calm it down – I find a hot wheat/lupin bag helps a treat.

    I broke my no added sugar rule for the first time yesterday. I baked biscuits to take to my aunt and uncle and I ate 2 of them. Could have been worse, but I’m still a little unhappy with myself. Hopefully it doesn’t trigger cravings today.

    I’m heading up to the hills shortly to collect my aunt and take her to the nursing home where my uncle is currently in respite care – my aunt couldn’t cope with his needs at home. He’s only there for 2 weeks but I’m not sure what will happen when he goes home as she’s going to have the same difficulties again.

    Have a good day.

    Good morning everyone,

    Hi CatLady! So glad you popped in again. Don’t worry about answering all our chitchat, tell us how 5:2 is going!

    I think we can be a hard thread for people who just want to pop in a couple of times a week. But I really hope you can make it work for you. The whole idea is to support each other with 5:2, it is just that we keep getting sidetracked by orchids and violin concerts and puppies and even secret projects.

    I do a bit of sidetracking with cats. 🙂 Mine is Miso, a black and gold tabby who has managed to get to 10 years old.
    Lovely to hear about your cats and books, and so glad your dad has you, it must be so hard for him managing Parkinson’s disease. Being a carer is a huge commitment, so hooray for cats and books.

    Thin, haha tennis shoes are a step up from thongs, and black is the right colour! Carnaval will be great fun. Woohoo for Moixo Foguer.

    Well, not long after I posted yesterday I realised I wouldn’t be well enough to mind Miss 5 granddaughter today, and promptly changed fast days. So I had a good plant based diet yesterday and I am going for my favourite fasty Sunday today.

    Happy Sunday folks. Lindsay, missing you. Intesha, how are you going? Merry, have a break from your secret project! Gday, what’s happening? Klondi, I am going to write. Cheers to you all, I hope it is a laid back Sunday.

    Keep pedaling Neil!

    Cinque, I’ll be your fast buddy today.

    We followed the thick trail of feathers through the narrow streets and eventually caught up with Moixo Foguer who, disappointingly, turned out to be a naked woman. Not sure of the origin of that LJ but Carnaval is not dissimilar to what we’re doing here. It represents feasting prior to fasting for lent so it’s lunar based. It’s the only Catalonian festival to have survived Franco’s dictatorship.

    The streets were filled with bands, confetti, dancing, giants, drag queens, satire and entire families dressed up in themes in friendly rivalry against their neighbours. I particularly liked the family of butchers with the dad covered in blood brandishing a meat clever and carrying a baby dressed as a piglet. It’s Halloween on steroids.

    Many of the costumes and themes would be considered politically incorrect in Australia, people would be offended and we’d probably be offered counselling. Consequently, I loved it a lot and it made me realise that we take ourselves and life too seriously.

    But how do they keep this up for a whole week?

    Hi all, looks like not much activity over the last couple of days. Are we all having a quiet weekend?

    Cinque, I may have to try the zucchini meatball recipe. We’ve grown round zucchinis this year and they’ve gone nuts at the moment…although my wife probably has most of them reserved for chocolate zucchini cake 😉

    Catlady, I also used to have the problem with too many books until we went to move house several years back and I found I have like 40 banana boxes full. I ended up donating most to the annual 24 hour book-sale, and now I’ll buy my next years reading from the book-sale each year and donate back last years reading….apart from my Terry Pratchett collection, I’m not parting with that.

    Thin, Carnival sounds amazing, I’m not sure I’d cope though as I get a bit anxious if I’m in large crowds.

    LJoyce, don’t beat yourself up about the 2 biscuits, just try to hit the reset button, put them in the past and move on.

    Well as for me, I managed the rail trail fine. I did 78 kms yesterday in 3 hours 40 minutes of riding time (I did stop to take pictures, half an hour for lunch and half an hour for morning tea on top of the riding time) Today the place I was staying didn’t have anyone around to take my payment until an hour and a half after I was hoping to be on the road. I had a deadline to get to Middlemarch to catch the shuttle back to my car, so I was really pushing it. I managed to average 27.6 kilometers an hour and cycle the 75 kilometers in 2 hours 40 minutes. I ended up with enough time for a shower and lunch before the shuttle arrived. I picked up some lovely central Otago fruit on the drive home so my boys quickly tucked into the boysenberries, apricots, peaches, greengage plums and crimson pears.

    Well tomorrow back to reality, back to work, and back on a fast day. I’ll probably need it because I ate like a pig while I was cycling. This morning alone I ate a bowl of cereal, half a tin of peaches, 2 pottles of yoghurt and 4 slices of toast.

    Have a great day everyone and I’ll see you all tomorrow.

    Good evening all

    Neil, that final destination does seem to be a pretty quiet spot. What quaint little tin sheds! Hope the ride went well – I bet that restful train journey on the way home felt good. That fruit bounty sounds pretty good. Hopefully the boys will leave enough for you to take a tasty snack to work tomorrow.

    Cinque I was doing a FD500 today too.

    Thin, They picked the wrong time of year to be naked and have nothing for warmth but a bit of honey! It does sound like fun and it’s making me rethink my idea of doing Spain, Portugal and Morocco next year Oct-Nov. The trouble is there are rarely any tours for that part of the world in winter and I’m not comfortable travelling alone in countries where I don’t speak the language.

    Catlady, I too used to have a room lined with books and then the rheumatoid arthritis processed to the stage where I could no longer comfortably hold a book. So I moved to an ereader and gradually either sold or donated all my books. I kept some helpful reference books (mostly health or travel related), but almost everything else went. After having a lifelong wish for a proper library in my house it was hard to dismantle it.

    I had planned a FD800 for today and tomorrow but today has ended at about 500cal as I was out for most of it and only had one banana with me.
    I will need to make sure tomorrow is still an 800 day however as Tuesday is infusion day.

    I have some food challenges coming up – 6 lunches/dinner/brunches over 2 1/2 weeks. Three birthdays events but also some catch up lunches with people I used to work with. The madness starts this Wednesday. A couple of the lunches will be easy enough to make healthy choices but some of the venues will be seriously challenging. I’m going to have to include a healthy sprinkling for both 500 and 800 cal days to balance any damage.

    Neil, great effort, well done! I couldn’t open your photos unfortunately.

    I agree, we’re not comfortable in huge crowds either and usually avoid them. Somehow, the events are spread out such that you can move freely. It’s all such a laugh that we forgot about fear. Not sure if I mentioned that we’ve moved to the coast south of Barcelona to Vilanova i la Geltrú. In recent years, Barcelona’s Carnaval events have been eclipsed by those of these smaller Catalonian towns but it was totally unplanned that we ended up here.

    LJ, I missed your post this morning. Hope your FD went swimmingly. Not just honey, feathers don’t forget! Today was another day of utter madness. Taruta, the region’s anthem music. Neighbour groups dressed in matching costumes march, chant and dance to their own bands through the streets all day (many becoming progressively intoxicated) and staging ‘wars’ when they meet by throwing sweets at each other. The beats and dancing become increasingly frenetic with the crowds cheering them on until they eventually continue on their way and the next group comes through. The streets were literally covered in lollies, too many for the children to pick up! They stuck to our shoes and now they really are on their last legs, so to speak. I completely forgot I was fasting as there was so much stimulation.

    Don’t let not speaking languages put you off travel. There’s almost nowhere left where the young people don’t speak English. And, I found out the other day that, if you have a smart phone, you can get an app that allows you to dictate an entire sentence and it will speak it out loud in the language of your choice. A local lady was showing me how it works this weekend as she spoke not one word of English. I bet the creators are building a valuable database of user info with that one!

    Good morning, quick post as we are crazy busy at work

    I had a lovely weekend down the coast with our good friends. They love good food but can’t cook to save themselves so OH and I cooked up some cracker meals for them. They loved every bite and thanked us constantly with full mouths – there is nothing more satisfying than cooking for people who really appreciate it. So while we didn’t have a lot of bad food, we had big portions of good food. Thankfully the scales didn’t shoot up so I didn’t go backwards.

    We had some nice walks on the beach but not long ones for two reasons. One my hubby has a very sore achilles that didn’t enjoy walking on the sand. Second, the beach is a mess with debris from the fires and storms and there was a lot of very smelly things that blew Maxx’s mind and all he did was run off to chow down. Ick. So we had to chase him and put him on the lead sadly. He was also very naughty with our friends, constantly mugging them and jumping and wiping lots of dog drool on their clothes. I spent the weekend nagging him and getting very stressed.

    I have read your lovely and interesting posts but will reply later or tomorrow as I really need to fly. Take care

    PS: I did want to thank you Thin for the reminder about the Dazer. As tempting as that is, we are determined to only use positive reinforcement methods to train him. It’s not working very well but that is our fault because we are inconsistent. Hubby is not patient and doesn’t keep up with the methods we agreed on. If I were the one at home Maxx would be a much better behaved dog….but then we wouldn’t have our lovely renovated house and no garden

    Fasty Sunday is over and I am making breakfast (woohoo) and writing at (sort of) the same time. And drinking a cup of tea! What a multitasker!

    LJoyce, hoping you are enjoying your post 500cal fast day morning. I missed your morning post yesterday too, it is good Neil referenced it. Sympathy re the two biscuits, I really really hope they didn’t set off munchies. Home made biscuits just out of the oven might be the hardest thing in the world not to eat. Hooray that you stopped at two. Hooray for the looser shirt, and best wishes to your uncle and aunty.

    Good luck working out the tricky social meals coming up. I must say I would just say I was having a fast day, on the trickiest ones, and let everyone
    have an interesting conversation about fasting while I had a drink of sparkling water.

    Thin, not sure of the time difference, but you must be at the end of your Sunday fast day. What a fun one.

    Neil great photos. I am sorry the second day was more pressured than you had hoped, but I bet you were pleased at your times.

    Round zucchinis! Wow. I will post the zucchini recipe in case you want to make it (separately so others can leap over it easily). It does use up a nice few zucchini. LJoyce I also like that the zucchini is used differently to my other recipes. A good balance between this and soup and slice and roasted ratatouille. And chocolate zucchini cake too!

    Anzac, what a fun weekend. Good friends, good food, good conversation. The best of life.
    I can understand Maxx getting so excited with it all that he forgot his training. Mr Anzac will probably be very strict this week out of embarrassment!

    Off to eat my breakfast mindfully and do some planning as next weekend will be lovely time with sisters, and I am cooking them a meal.

    Cheers all

    Sausage and Courgette Curry

    • 6/8 thick pork sausages
    • 1 large onion peeled and chopped
    • 1 tsp cumin seeds
    • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
    • 3cm of fresh ginger, grated
    • 2 large or 6 mini courgettes
    • 1 tsp rapeseed oil
    • 1 tsp chilli powder
    • 1 tsp turmeric
    • 200g tin plum tomatoes
    • ½ tsp salt
    • 1 tsp garam masala

    • Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat and fry the sausages, turning until they are brown. Remove and put on a plate.
    • In the same pan and add the cumin seeds once the sizzle and become fragrant add the onions.
    • Fry for about 10 minutes until they become translucent and start to turn golden brown.
    • Add the garlic and cook on a gentle heat for a few minutes.
    • In the mean time wash and chop the courgettes.
    • Add the tomatoes and stir in the turmeric, salt, and chilli powder and stir for a further minute. Once the masala is thick and shiny add the courgettes.
    • Bring the pan to a simmer, cover, then turn heat to low and cook for 10 minutes. Cut the sausages into chunks and add them to the pan.
    • Cover and cook for about 5 minutes until hot.
    • Add the garam masala, sprinkle with coriander and serve

    My notes: Another option is to make an African peanut sauce adding some peanut butter to the sauce instead of garam masala. Also making small meatballs (mince, grated carrot, oats soaked in milk, herbs), brown them in the fry pan and then cook them in the sauce.
    Vegetarian option, roasted pumpkin and/or eggplant instead of meatballs/sausages.
    Adjust spicing to your taste ofcourse!

    PS Found the source: https://www.harighotra.co.uk/sausage-and-courgette-curry-recipe

    Hi everyone

    Monday FD for me and so far so good. It’s just past 3pm and I have had a carrot and a slice of corned beef.That’s done the trick.

    Thanks LJ for the gherkin recipes. Just wondering how much sugar is in the recipe. Wasn’t sure if it’s 1/2 or 2 1/2.

    Cinque, your zucchini and meatballs look yummy, especially on a FD.

    Loved the pics of your ride Neil.

    A big hi to everyone else and sorry for the quick post. Will try to post more tomorrow but I bet a whole heap more stock comes in.

    Take care 🙂

    Good afternoon

    Nearing dinner time on an 800cal day – always challenging when I’ve just done a 500cal day. But it will be fine as I’m on the home stretch now.

    Quacka, sorry, it was 1 1/2 lbs sugar in those gherkins. It seemed odd to me that there was less sugar in the gherkins than the picked cucumbers until I realised that the vinegar proportions are quite different so the gherkin liquid will be sweeter. I should say that I’ve never made these 2 recipes, but the other things I’ve tried from the vercola book have worked.

    Cinque, thankyou for the recipe and the link. I was surprised to find it was a curry recipe as I didn’t get that impression from the pic of your pot of meatballs – I was thinking all things Italian. I love the idea of using peanut butter to thicken the sauce.

    Neil, did you notice that at the bottom of the link that Cinque provided there was also a zucchini pakora recipe – that had me craving pakoras!
    I have grown round zucchinis before – although the seed is hard to get here as you have to buy it by post from heritage seed savers. I found that the round zucchini were best when picked very small, otherwise I ended up with a big ball of seedy flesh and only a 1cm layer of firmer flesh around the outside. Good for stuffing though as the shape was much easier to deal with than a large marrow. I tried to grown green and also yellow zucchini this year but all of the the yellow zucchini seedlings died. Only the green ones that I grew from seed have done well.

    Anzac, I imagine Maxx did not take kindly to being restrained at the beach. Like most dogs I assume he loves jumping into the waves as they crash on shore.

    Tin, I hope the carnival lasts the week in Spain. It seems that carnival activities have been cut short in Italy as covid19 is spreading at those public events.

    I have taken a container of ratatouille bake that I made a few weeks ago out of the freezer for dinner. I layered all the veg with slices of haloumi, basil leaves and slices of garlic so I won’t need to add anything. It’s quite a warm day here so I needed a meal I could reheat without needing the stove.

    Our round zucchini are doing ok, there is a guy at our church that grows them and gives away seedlings every year. It’s weird that they all seem to grow around the centre of the plant. We’ve got about 20 of them on our plant in varying sizes from marble size up to tennis ball size. The tennis ball size is when we usually pick them.


    The other thing that has gone bonkers this year is our plum tree. It’s only around 2.5-3 meters high but we get tons of plums off it. We got around 40 kilos of them last year and this year there is even more


    I’ll definitely have to look up some plum recipes as well as giving away bags of them to our families.

    Betsy, I had some log in issue this morning and when I finally got access, I was ‘reporting a post’ of yours. I don’t think I clicked it but sorry if I did!

    Anzac, great that you had a fun weekend cooking for your friends with the added bonus of little excess on the scales. Understand completely if the positive reinforcement is working best for you with Maxx. Are you resuming dog obedience now that your big holiday is over?

    Neil, I like the plum tree. Lovely.

    Cinque, great recipe. I wonder if anyone looks at our recipe page these days?

    Quacka, hello! I hope the rest of your FD goes well too. I forgot to eat yesterday and I was SO hungry around 1am this morning. Enjoying fresh coffee and frothy milk now.

    LJ, yes, I saw on the Spanish TV station about Venice’s Carnaval being cut short. Italy has the highest incidence of corona virus in Europe. We are going to have a slow day admiring the Mediterranean which is right outside the window and psyching ourselves up for sleet tomorrow.

    Good evening all. Great to read all the posts.

    Thin, I don’t think you clicked on my post, as I have normal access, so all good. Sounds like a ball at the carnival.

    Neilithicman, great photos, and well done for managing the ride. And yum for the fruit.

    Catlady, re books, I guess I’m a collector, and if I once find an author that I like I just keep buying his or her books. The other problem with the library is that they change over their books fairly regularly, maybe every few years they have all new books and my older favourites are no longer available. I will often go back and re-read a favourite author’s books from the beginning. Some of my books have been read maybe 15-20 times. On the other hand, I have some authors whose books I’ve bought and not yet read. Currently, some of them are sitting in a big box. When I have time, I’ll read one or two. If I like them, they’ll go on the shelves; if I don’t the op shop will be receiving them. Some of my theological books will go once I’ve finished my doctorate, too.

    Cinque & LJoyce, thanks for your comments re my back. In actuality, it’s been “niggling for a few weeks, then leaning over to do the orchid re-potting didn’t help a lot, and the trying on clothes just put it over the line to where I felt – physio time. It will settle fairly quickly, I’m sure.

    My weight? Going okay. Weighed the same Saturday as Friday, which I felt was a bit unfair after a FD (well, FD800), but at least it WAS the same, so I was still 79.9kg, 🙂 !. Anyway, good that my downward progression is continuing. It has to; most of my winter clothes won’t fit until I lose another 3 or 4 kg. What IS weird is that while my bust and waist are showing the loss, there’s been very little shift off my hips yet, and they’re nearly an inch bigger than they were at this weight last time I was losing. That just doesn’t make sense to me. I’m exercising, making sure I move around. Maybe not active enough???

    Klondikekween, Merryme, Intesha, CrazyArtist, where are you? We are missing your insights here.

    Anzc65, how much longer in your current position, before you get to move back to the department you were happier in? It will be a relief for you to move.

    Quacka, Hope the FD ended well for you today.

    I’m aiming for either 2 or 3 FD800s this week. Want to end February on a high note. It would be lovely if 3.2 kg could become 4 kg!! 🙂

    Goodnight all!

    Good morning – a lovely day in Sydney, sunny and 28

    I like your idea to end February on a high Betsy so I am going to do the same. Not a good start today as the scales jumped up 400g despite a good CD yesterday that was well under my TDEE. This must be the overeating weekend catching up a day later. Sigh.

    FD today so hopefully that will knock that off and then another on Thursday to start the downward trend again

    I’m already back in my old job Betsy, thanks for asking. It’s great but just very busy. I don’t mind being busy when I enjoy the work and I’m confident in it

    Catlady, I have so many books it is getting a bit ridiculous. They are all over the house even though I did a big cull last year and took bags and bags to the charity bookshop. I need to do another one. I’m like you Betsy, I have almost every book of my favourite authors and I just can’t part with them. They are like my children.

    That carnival sounds fantastic Thin. I would love to see it one day. Good luck with the sleet – brrrr. My friends in the UK who are on the labrador forum are giving horrendous accounts of the weather over there with much flooding and sideways rain/hail.

    LJ we were more than happy for Maxx to play in the waves but as soon as we would take him down to the shoreline and let him off he would bolt back up the beach to where the debris was and start chomping. There were some other dogs there each time we went and they were mostly all doing the same thing. The thing they were all seemingly desperate to eat was some sort of plant on a long stem. The smell was like a cross between vomit and poo that had been left in the hot sun for 3 weeks. I was actually gagging when pulling it out of his mouth. Luckily he doesn’t resource-guard and lets you take anything out of his mouth. That is one area we have had success with him. At meal times he knows he can’t touch the food in his bowl until we say ‘eat!’ and that has made him compliant if we need to take something off him.

    I just realised I ran out of coffee yesterday and forgot to bring more. Gah! It will be tough to get through a FD without a few cups of black coffee and I refuse to have instant. I also don’t buy takeaway as it always tastes burnt and bitter. I do have some massel stock cubes so I’ll have half a one in some hot water instead. It’s a delicious drink on a FD

    Hi everyone else, i need to get back to work. Have an awesome day

    Good morning everyone,

    Before I forget AGAIN, Miso the cat would like me to clarify that she is a tortoiseshell, not a tabby. I apologise profusely to you and to Miso.

    Neil those round zucchini’s are amazing, and I love that the plant has them all in the middle instead of straining outward like something in a horror movie, as mine do. (But my blackjack zucc are my favourite).
    And wo those plums! Are they blood plums? (My favourite plum).

    Quacka I was worried the zucchini recipe wasn’t suitable for a fast day, it makes it so tricky that I’m no good at calorie counting. I could put it in the recipe thread if it would be a good fast day recipe.
    LJoyce it could easily be made Italian, haha. A very flexible recipe for adjustments to the sauce.

    Thin, happy frothy coffee, enjoy carnaval in the sleet today!

    Betsy, you have consolidated being under 80kg. Excellent. Maybe your back being inflamed is enough to mean more water in your muscles helping them heal?
    Isn’t it weird how we lose in different places. It really does seem to be first on, last off , with everyone having a different sequence. Oh well, it will be your hips turn eventually.

    Sympathy Anzac, surviving with no coffee. How will your brain possibly work?

    I’m another one who has been divesting books. I am a great comfort re-reader of my favourite books, but now I have read them all so many times that I have come to a standstill! It is sad. I miss the delight of reading a favourite one more time.
    I borrow lots of books from the library but I have also got pickier about what I can be bothered to read. They have to catch me in the first few pages or I send it back.

    Well, I had toast for breakfast so I need to pack my 7 serves of veggies into the next two meals! Fast day tomorrow.

    Best wishes and all good things

    Hi everyone

    Thanks for the clarification on the gherkin recipe, LJ. I will have to keep it for next season now as our plants have been destroyed with all the rain and the few gherkins that were left are now looking like overgrown zucchini!

    Speaking of zucchini. I love the look of the round zucchini. I’ve also tried to grow the yellow ones before and have had no success. Our green zucchini have been awesome this season as we only planted two in the bed instead of trying to crowd three in. They love good airflow.

    Neil, I am soooooo jealous. That plum tree looks amazing and I’m sure I could find lots of recipes to use all that fruit up. Is there no fruit fly in NZ? I have seen a cooking show and the chef sounded like she was Kiwi. Her food garden was beautiful and diverse and all the produce looked healthy and yummy. What struck me was that none of the beautiful garden was netted so I’m assuming there must be no fruit fly. (I just looked her up and her name is Annabel Langbein). I think NZ is a place I could live in if I could grow produce like she has in her garden. We hope to come over there next year so we can see what it’s like and who knows, maybe in the future we will move there. I know there is really good fishing there too 🙂

    My FD went well yesterday, ending up at just over 400 calories.
    I’m glad it’s not a FD to day as I am on my 4th day of very little sleep. I just don’t know why I can’t sleep lately but it is driving me a little crazy. Wondering if it’s because I haven’t been exercising. I need to get those tail feathers moving again!

    OK best get going. It’s nearly lunchtime and oooooh yeahhhhh, I have roasted cauliflower for lunch. I have been missing it so much so I’m really going to enjoy it.

    Take care all 🙂

    Good afternoon all

    I have managed to squeeze in my walk and get some fruit and veg on the way home. The nurse is coming this afternoon to do my infusion.

    Quacka, I’ve also watched quite a few episodes of Annabel Langbein’s cooking shows over recent years. She cooks lovely things.
    Sorry you are having so much trouble with sleep. As you suggested, moving more might help – I know I usually sleep better when I’m doing daily exercise. But sometimes we just seem to get into a bit of a funk when it comes to sleep. It can’t last forever as eventually your body will get tired enough to sleep anyway.
    Snap, I bought cauli for roasting today too.

    Cinque, haha, here’s hoping Miso accepted your apology.
    I would absolutely use the meatball recipe on a FD (if made from lean mince as you suggested, rather than sausages). I don’t count calories, even on FD, but as the added fats are small and the majority of the dish volume is veg, my estimate is that it would fit in ok. Just about any meal that’s mostly veg with some lean protein and minimal added fats and grains will work as a FD dinner.

    Neil, I’m another who is jealous of that plum tree. I left a satsuma plum tree behind at my previous house and have no room for them here. Enjoy.

    Anzac, when you were talking about smelly things I thought you meant dead creatures. It sounds like the rotted plants had a similar smell, which must be what attracted the dogs.

    Thin – forgot to eat? Not sure I know what that feels like!
    It’s not just Venice there are quite a few towns that have cancelled their carnival activities. This morning they were horrified that football games couldn’t go ahead – there seemed to be more grief about that than cancelling carnival.

    Betsy, I hope your back improves soon. Don’t try moving those boxes of books until it is better, and you have help.

    Time to grab some lunch and then I need to tidy up the living room – there are piles of travel magazines everywhere.

    Hi, the plums are a Billington plum which has a purple skin and dark red/purple flesh. We originally got it as a pollinator but it’s become our main plum tree. Good luck with your seven serves of veggies.

    Quacka, no we don’t have fruit fly. In fact when there’s a hint that some may have snuck in to the country from Aussie there’s mass panic from the ministry of primary industries. Some years we lose a lot of plums to wasps if there’s a nest close by, but this year I haven’t seen any, and our cat is good at taking care of any birds that try to pinch them. Man 400 calories is a pretty strict fast day. I struggle to keep under 800 these days on fast days.

    I made a whole lot of fruit leather last year with the plums so I may do that again this year. You line a baking tray with baking paper, cook some plums with a bit of sugar, blitz it with a blender, pour it onto the baking sheets and then leave it in a low oven for 6-8 hours until it’s all tacky. Then you just roll up the sheets, cut it into strips and you can keep it in the freezer for months.

    I slipped a little and had some sugar after dinner, a scoop of ice cream and a little boysenberry chocolate muffin, not the best thing to do the night before my weigh-in, but hopefully the exercise I’ve been doing will balance it out. Oh and I got a weird comment at work yesterday. Somebody told me that I look taller. My brother-in-law said the same thing. I guess because I’m thinner I seem taller, I would seriously don’t that I’ve actually grown, although I wish I had, that would help lower my BMI 😉

    See you all tomorrow for my weigh-in results

    Hi everyone. You have all been busy. Thin, Carnival sounds fun, especially the honey and feather covered person. And the neighbors dressed up in family costumes. That family of butchers with the baby dressed as a piglet made me think of the horror our politically correct society here would experience. But it sure sounds like fun. Life gets just too serious sometimes.

    Books. We have books and bookshelves all around our house. We need to do another culling but it’s so hard to get rid of books. Thank goodness for the Kindle app on my iPad and Kindle. It’s so nice to be able to carry around hundreds of books on one little tablet. And it sometimes feels like magic to finish one book and be able to buy the next in a series in minutes, late at night, and goon reading!

    Neil, that plum tree is amazing! The plums look really big. I’m surprised the birds don’t get them. Your trip sounds like so much fun and the photos are beautiful. I love the name MiddleMarch for that town. I wonder how it got that name?

    Cinque, when you first wrote that Miso was a tabby it made me stop and think that I had been picturing her all wrong. I was happy to hear that she’s actually a tortoise shell because you must have mentioned that in the past, because that’s how I pictured her.

    FD tomorrow (or actually today since it’s past midnight) and once again it’s really needed. Still on the roller coaster of eating too much on NFD’s.

    Have a great day, everyone.

    Hi everyone, all the talk about Miso made me think – you need to see my Wilbur, so here he is: https://imgur.com/a/oVosfAX

    After my complaints about my hip size – down 1/2 an inch this morning. Whew! That’s a relief. And after seeing the physio, the lower back pain has eased a lot. I’ll see him again next Tuesday, just to be sure.

    Anzac65, good you’re back where you’re comfortable and appreciated. Hope you survived without your coffee today! 🙂

    CalifDreamer, I also have a Kindle and iPad containing books, but for me it’s not the same. I really enjoy holding books in my hands. That may change as I get older, if I develop arthritis in my hands. For now it’s okay.
    Having said that, once I accept that my retirement is final (as of, I won’t be going back as an Emergency Teacher, or for an occasional 5-week term, which I still may do), one full bookcase of books in my garage will be emptied out. I have to try to find somewhere disadvantaged that can use some good quality learning-English books. I’ll do the same with nearly a bookcase of theological books, though the librarian at my college may be able to help there with somewhere for the books to go.

    Neilithicman, your plum “leather” sounds good. Does the sugar concentrate in it, though? It would be interesting to work out how many calories are in each strip, especially as a strip may actually contain a few rather than just one plum.

    Quacka, well done on your fast day. I’m like Neilithicman – 400 calories just doesn’t cut it, for me. If I’m going down that low, I’m better having a liquid Fast day (LFD) and just have a couple of milk drinks, plus no-calorie drinks for the day; and I don’t do that very often!

    LJoyce, hope your infusion went well.

    Cinque, I know you’ve probably done it well before I joined the forum, but could you put a photo of Miso on imgur for us, please? Then we definitely won’t mistake her for a tabby rather than a tortoiseshell.

    Hoping for another few hundred gms down from the start of the month – more than 3 kg so far, but I’d like it to be 4 kg before my end of week weigh-in. I’m sure I’ll post it here with great delight, if I get there! It’s pleasing to be on the downward trail again, but I’m still less than halfway back to where I was in May last year. It doesn’t matter, I am progressing again in the right direction, and that’s good enough.

    Goodnight all.

    Good evening all

    Betsy, what a handsome chap Wilbur is. Although he doesn’t look overly impressed at being asked to smile for the camera! With that glossy coat he is obviously well cared for.
    Hope you progress well toward your end of week weigh-in. Mine will be an end of month weigh-in and I’m worried as I have social lunches tomorrow and Friday which will have an impact. I’ll need a very strict FD on Thursday.

    Neil, I’ve never made fruit leather. When I had a surfeit of plums I would stew or bake them for freezing, or make them into jam. The leather does sound good though.
    In Australia not all states have fruit fly and at the state borders there are attempts made to keep them out. In South Australia, where I am, we are supposedly fruit fly free but they do show up occasionally and then there’s a mad panic and extensive spraying by the authorities. The key efforts are to keep them out of the main fruit production areas like the Riverland.

    Cali, hope that FD goes well, although I gather it’s not the FDs that are the problem for you at present. I’m not sure what to suggest as I get into that pattern all too often myself. Sometimes eliminating certain foods for a while helps – especially if I keep reaching for them on NFDs. I stopped eating bread for a few weeks as my consumption had gotten out of hand. I have reintroduced rye sourdough in the last week, but have a limit of 2 slices on NFDs. Of course its easier for me as I live alone I can ban foods from the house. That much more challenging for you.

    I had completely forgotten that lent starts tomorrow and was only reminded when I looked at the BBC food site tonight to see the pancake day recipes. As most of you will remember, I usually take the opportunity of a 40 period to choose a sacrifice or commitment to work on something I think is in need of change. In recent years those things have mostly related to my health. This year is no exception. My commitment for lent (starting tomorrow) is to do some form of exercise every single day, I don’t care how short the session is as long as I do something. My second commitment is to eat mindfully – I find this is something that I need to continually remind myself to do as it doesn’t come naturally.

    Good night all.

    YAY! Half a kilo gone!

    It’s my third loss in a row so the roller coaster seems to be over for now. I’m now sitting on my lightest weight since I was 18 years old, I’m currently sitting on 86.6 kilos. The problem now is that my BMR is only 1750 calories and my TDEE is 2700 calories so I’ll have to watch what I eat to be able to stay here….but for now, my post-weigh in sausage roll is calling 😉

    Have a great day everyone

    Oh, and I’ve just passed 1,000 kilometers cycled for the year so far. I’ve done 1036 kms so I’m over halfway to my goal for the year.

    Good morning

    Neil, congratulations! Impressive progress on both counts

    Has to be another short post as I am crazy busy at work. My FD yesterday was a BFF (big fat fail) and I feel like I’m on the cusp of a spiral. Today I must put it all aside and just concentrate on thinking positive thoughts about my health and imagine how awful it would be to be nearly 100 kilos again

    Wilbur is such a cutie Betsy but I agree with LJ that he didn’t look impressed to be photographed

    Have a great day all

    Hi all, Spencerville, Tuesday 11.15am. Overcast but warm!

    Great to catch up on all the posts and hear how busy everyone has been, makes me feel quite lazy! Barcelona and the Carnaval sounds a lot of fun Thin, when are you heading back to the boat? Well done Neil, your weight loss journey is an inspiration to us all, and the photos from your second day of cycling remind me so much of the Central I remember! I had my first taste of the season of Greengage plums yesterday, and oh, it did transport me back to my childhood. Wilbur looks beautiful, similar to my old Sambo, but a great companion everyday. So glad you got back to your old job Anzac and you feel so much more comfortable there, now just to get to those stress munchies, or are they comfort munchies? I also love reading, something I hated as a child and was forced to read all through school, but now love it and have read several books since being on the road, however storage is not an option for me, not that it ever was anyway as I don’t like to re-read a book, I do download books onto my tablet now and also I have some real books that I read and swap at different caravan parks we visit, I hold on to them until I find another one I want to read, then swap it out.

    I’m keeping active but just mainaining at present. We spent a week cycling the Alps to Ocean (306 kms) with friends and couldn’t possoibly face not eating anything that was available as much as what I actually wanted?! Most places we stayed at were B & B, which I struggle with at the best of times, really not a brekky person, but had to fuel up, and we always finished with a couple of beers/wines, hot days, friends, accomplishment, you know how it goes? Did try to stick to a healthy dinner most of the time and my first weigh in was last Tuesday at 76.6kg, but what a different shape, my middle has gone and my lower abs so much tighter, although no difference on the scales, a week later and this morning was 76.4 so kinda hovering, need to get serious with this animal, put it back in its cage, once and for all and get real. Am still only having two meals a day and 16:8 TRE but eating too much and snacking. So foolish to know what I’m doing wrong and not put it right!!

    Great to hear what everyone is up to, must go, brunch, then off for a bike ride to Sumner on the coast, enjoy your Tuesday everyone,


    Good morning,
    Posting quickly as my home help angel will be here soon.

    Quacka I hope, hope, hope that you got a better sleep last night. (I hate how it can turn into a self perpetuating cycle and you feel like an overtired toddler all the time). I hope some exercise helps.
    Well done on that 400 fast day. That is what I am aiming for today.

    LJoyce, hoping you are okay after your infusion.
    I might post the zucchini recipe in the other thread, but I had better get some proper measurements for the meatballs. An excuse to make it again soon 🙂 .
    Neil I had to look up the Billington plum, very NZ! They do look quite like bloodplums, but they don’t mention satsuma in any of the googling I did. How wonderful anyway. I

    Cali, you had such a good handle on Miso!
    Here is her picture, Betsy. She is wondering why I am taking photos instead of filling up her bowl. https://imgur.com/a/NgU8WuE
    Your Wilbur looks just like a Wilbur!

    Cali, hoping your fast day is going super well! Hoping tomorrow will be a sensible NFD, it is Lent after all! 😉
    (Saying the same to myself!)

    Betsy woot for that 1/2 inch off your hips, how comfy your trousers will be today. You are progressing beautifully, onward and downward!

    LJoyce, I hope your Lenten rules will help you through those lunches and dinners. But as they say, ‘get over rough ground as lightly as possible’ and then you can take the time to rest and reset.

    I think I will make Lenten commitments too. I might concentrate on Lenten recipes. I’ve got several Greek ones and will look for others.

    Neil you are SUCH AN ACHEIVER! Woot woot! Well done.

    Anzac, no. You really need to get in fast before that spiral gathers energy. Is there anything we can do to help? Hooray for thinking about those 100kg. What can you do to comfort yourself that is not self destructive? A lovely back massage?
    Anyway drink lots of water ad avoid the sugary snacks. Sending all my best wishes.

    Turn you do seem busy enough! The ride sounds fabulous and how healthy and gorgeous you must feel now. Oh dear those snacks. Hope you can cut them out. My best strategy is a big pot of soup and have a mug of that instead of anything else. Bigger portions of healthy food might be needed at mealtimes when you are so active, and that might help reduce hunger between meals. Oh well, you will work it the best way to tackle it. Good wishes!

    Yay I think I fitted in everything. Off to soak some white fungus (an ingredient I have never used before) to have in my miso this evening. Bye now.

    Hi everyone

    Wednesday FD and so far so good. Drinking lots of water and I have kelp noodles ready for the 3pm hunger buster.

    Thanks Cinque, I did manage to get some sleep last night. I slept through from 9pm-11pm and then woke up feeling like I had slept for hours. I went back to sleep for the rest of the night/morning but still woke up about 10 times but at least I went back to sleep each time.

    Neil, you may have gotten taller. My shoe size has gone from an 8 to a 7 since I lost weight so stranger things could happen!

    Betsy and Neil, the only way I can do a 400 calorie FD is with lots of veggies. I love cauli and broccoli for these days especially as they are filling for not much calories. Zucchini is another good one.
    The biggest thing for me is that my head has to be in the right space and some days I surprise even myself. Other days I feel like I am in the right space and it’s just one big struggle. Like you Anzac, I just think about how I felt when I was a lot bigger and that seems to keep me on the straight for a FD. Doesn’t always work but it does always help. Hope you are doing well today.

    I better go. I have had so much stock delivered already this week so I best go do some more. Take care all 🙂

    Good afternoon all

    Despite the rain I decided to still take the train to the city to get to lunch. That means about 50mins of brisk walking. I used an umbrella for the worst of it but got a bit damp by the end.
    I also had time to go to the central market and stock up on certain legumes that are either hard to source in the suburbs or much more expensive. I ended up with nearly 4kg of beans in my backpack which made me work harder on the walk home. https://imgur.com/SSrfWyi I love the colours of legumes and the clattering noise they make as I pour them. I bought black beans, soya beans, French puy lentils and adzuki beans. Legumes are such good value – these were all $4-6 per kilo, so this cost $18 for almost 4kg – which will become about 12kg of food once cooked. I’m going to have to hunt down some black bean recipes as I haven’t had them to cook with for ages. If anyone has black bean recipes to share I’d love to hear them.

    We went to Argo for lunch and I was very pleased with my lunch order. I had the lamb salad which is a tossed leaf salad with strips of greek BBQ lamb, danish feta, tzatziki dressing and dukkah. It’s my favourite thing on their menu and it’s healthy (apart from the generous amount of salt on the lamb and in the the feta).

    Quacka, My shoes fit differently too. I find my feet swell less with retained fluid than they did when I was heavy. I’m still a 7 but I don’t need the wider fitting that I used to.

    Cinque, Miso is seriously cute. You’d better be careful next time you offer to give her to me – I might say yes.

    Turn, there is nothing wrong with maintaining weight but acquiring a trimmer more toned shape – which it seems is what’s happening to you. That’s a good thing as that extra muscle with help you burn a few more calories.
    I agree about the brekkie situation. It annoys me with most travel option that it’s the one meal they seem to include in the price – the only one I don’t want to eat.

    Neil, well done on those results. I can’t match your 1000+kms, I’ve walked 387kms so far – at that rate I’ll make the 2020 target with a comfortable margin, but nothing like you will achieve – at this rate you’ll do it 3 times over.

    Anzac, reminding yourself of the weight you don’t want to be again can be useful. You will need to find a new long term motivation as you had been using the holiday and fitting into that jacket to spur you on. That’s the problem with an event being motivation – once it’s gone it’s too easy to fall off the wagon. You want to be able to chase Maxx along the beach for the next decade or so – you need to be fit and healthy for that.
    I was watching a guide dog in the city today and thinking of Maxx – how much work must it take to get labs from uncontrollable puppies to such well behaved and valuable helpers – lots of warm steak treats perhaps?

    Have a nice day all.

    Morning all and thanks for the support.

    Ljoyce, I definitely won’t do 2020 kms three times this year. I’m pushing it this month because I’m taking part in the February cycling challenge through work, when it’s over I’ll probably go back to riding 15ks a day and a decent Saturday morning ride. https://www.lovetoride.net/dunedin?locale=en-GB ALmost 400 kms of walking is pretty damn good for 2 months, think if you average 4-5 kpm then that’s 80-100 hours (around 4 days) of solid walking! I love beans too, we usually do one meal of beans a week, usually chili beans as either chili con carne or burritos.

    Cinque, I used to do that too, not white fungus, but I got a big pack of mixed dried mushrooms from the Asian section of the supermarket and I put them in my miso when I’m doing a fast day. Apparently if mushrooms have been dried in the sun then they store vitamin D. I think I saw that in one of Michael Mosley’s series “The secrets of your food”

    Turn, long time no hear. Yes Central Otago is our favourite playground and we’re there at least once a year, I just love the Roxburgh area. The Alps to ocean ride is the next one on my list. I’m aiming to ride it at the end of the year, either around Labour weekend or over the Christmas break. Congrats on your results. Mine was the same for a long time now, roller-coastering up and down around the same weight but things getting slimmer and tighter. Just think that it means you’re swapping out your fat for muscle, and a muscular frame burns more calories, the weight is going to come off eventually.

    Quacka, my FD struggles relate to exercise. If I’ve been not doing as much then I can manage under 800 calories easily, if I’ve been busy I’ll usually push it out to 1000-1200 calories.

    Anzac, I hope you can recover from your BFF. I know we’ve all had those in the past, there’s nothing we can do about it now that it’s done, except try to balance it out over the next week.

    Well my goal for this week will be to try and limit the bounce-back which may be coming since my last weigh-in was after my 150 kilometer bike weekend. My eating over the last couple of days has been ok and my exercise has been pretty good. The last day of the cycling challenge I’m in is on Saturday so I’m planning a huge ride around Dunedin. I’m hoping on hitting over 100 kilometers but I’ll see how my legs are feeling, my planned route has several places I can pull out early if I’m not feeling up to riding the whole thing, but the hill climbs are in the first 20 kilometers and most of the rest is on the flat so I should be ok.

    Good morning, it is lovely post fast day morning for me. I am enjoying every minute.

    The white fungus in my soup was wonderful. No taste but a gorgeous crunchy texture. I bought it knowing nothing about it, and chose the biggest, whitest one, only to find the whitest ones have been bleached (no added Vit D for me, I think!) and when soaked it is enough to feed six, and I am only one. However it made for wonderful soup and I might have some more in a stirfry for lunch.

    Well, chasing Lenten recipes was an interesting experience. All the top sites were full of deep fried fish and sumptuous other things as they concentrated on no meat. By the time I got back to the Orthodox Great Lent which specifies no meat or fish or dairy products and no eggs, oil or alcohol, slightly varying between days of the week and saint days. Woah, by then my hands were flung in the air and I was thinking, but what about everything in my fridge!

    Then I sidetracked to the Apostle’s fast and thought (since I am not religious, only inspired) I could tweak that (Full fast rules Wednesday and Friday, oil and wine allowed on Tuesday and Thursday, oil wine and fish allowed on Saturday and Sunday). Then I realised it starts after Lent and goes for a couple of months, so I thought about doing it in its own time…. but then I thought ‘winter’.

    So I am going to think about it further. Sister time starts today so I will just enjoy that with my usual eating and then have a Lenten play.

    Ha Quacka I went down a shoe size too, I had fat feet!
    Isn’t it true how the fast day struggle varies. Sometimes I fly through and could easily do another, other times it is a cranky drag.

    LJoyce, ooh those beans! Gorgeous! I love black beans. But I think I mostly use them in recipes where I normally use red kidney beans. Very Tex Mex and South American though! I’ve got a kilo of them in my larder, so black bean meals coming up!

    Mmm, what a yummy lunch you had.

    You might get Miso the cat in the post, although if you noticed all the cat food crumbs on the floor in the photo, you would send her straight back. Messiest eater I’ve ever known!
    She does redeem herself when she is soft and cuddly though.

    Neil you make a lot of sense re weight bouncing up and down as it combines with building up exercise. Hoping you get a nice number next weigh in.

    Well I was going to cook chicken curry first thing, to get it done, and sitting enriching its flavour ready for dinner tonight, but the fridge is so full (dal and muttar paneer) that I had better leave it for later. The millet too. And the salad ofcourse. I am going to start the naan and plan the rest minute by minute so I am not a crazed mess when my sisters arrive.

    Hoping you all have a particularly nice day. Has the cold front that went through here yesterday morning got to NZ? Cheers all.

    Hi everyone

    Day after FD for me and no more for the week. The scales were nice to me this morning but I would hate to see what they would read now as I don’t think I have stopped eating all morning! I had 5 Vita wheats and Philly cheese with the last of our home grown tomatoes for brekky. Then I had popcorn which I was supposed to save for the afternoon but there was no way I could stop once I started. Hmmm. Then I had some paw paw and a nectarine that I had chopped up just to have a bit of fruit intake. I guess it’s not really that much but I just feel a bit piggy. LOL. I have a nice tuna salad for lunch and then hopefully that will be it until dinner time. I have a sneaking suspicion that it won’t be though. Not today….

    LJ, love the pics of the beans. A really nice salad I make with black beans is a pineapple and avocado salsa style. As you aren’t the biggest fan of avocado, of course you could leave it out. I use fresh pineapple, avocado, black beans, tomato, cucumber, capsicum and red onion (or shallots). I also add in some sliced red chilli (sometimes hot, sometimes mild) and fresh coriander or flat leaf parsley. I dress this with olive oil and lime juice, salt and pepper. It is yummy on it’s own or with a bit of chicken or steak. I think it would be nice with mango also if it’s not too ripe.

    Time for me to go to lunch. It’s been a bit quieter at work today without so many deliveries so I’ve been catching up on all the other duties. Hope you all have a lovely weekend 🙂

    Good afternoon everybody.

    Quacka, thanks for the recipe. Actually the avocado sounds like it belongs in that salad. It’s not that I don’t like it, it’s the bland flavour that I don’t like. But sometimes its creamy texture is just the right element when combined with other foods that do provide plenty of flavour – then the avocado can provide balance and texture. (I also stress about the calorie content.)

    Cinque, thanks for posting those black bean links on the legume thread.
    I must admit I hadn’t realised there were so many versions of the lenten food restrictions – having grown up in a methodist tradition which follows no lenten food restrictions at all – not that I was ever aware of. Whether I choose to do a sacrifice or a commitment for lent it is completely non-traditional and just a convenient 40 day period to work on something that I think would be good for my long term well-being. I often include something that deals with either sloth or gluttony (or both) as I know these are two issues that I continually need to moderate. You could always consider doing the passover restrictions – then you have until April to think about it and only a week of restrictions. Actually it’s not a bad idea for me either – one week without bread might be just the thing if my consumption is getting out of hand.

    Neil, Nothing like a monthly challenge to get you motivated. You might as well make the most of the milder weather to get those bike kms in, as it will get tougher as the weather becomes colder and wetter.

    I went for my walk this afternoon and decided to go via an op shop, as I’m on the lookout for a lightweight rain jacket that will be suitable for the first month of autumn in Canada. As usual I didn’t find what I was looking for but came home with two pairs of summer pants – one pair with the shop tag still attached. All summer I was looking for pant like these and now that summer’s nearly gone they finally show up! I’ll be ready for next year.

    It a serious <500FD for me today (and Saturday) so that tomorrow and Sunday can be NFDs and I can eat a few birthday treats without stressing. Because I’ve have so many days that I limit to 1200 or 800 cals I find the 500FDs a bit more challenging, but I am determined. So far I’ve had a very small banana and a plum and I’m just about to have my second pot of tea for the day. Dinner will be a 2 egg omelette with a filling made from red onion, mushrooms, zucchini, tomatoes and bacon (leftover from a Tuesday night).

    Have a good day all.

    I heard a female comedian talking about fat on a podcast today. She said that

    “losing fat you’ve just gained is like moving a vagrant sleeping on your doorstep. All you have to do is nudge it with your foot and it will shift, because it’s only just got there. Losing fat that has been there for years is like trying to evict squatters from your house. I’ve got fat on my thighs that’s like “Yeah, you’re going to need a court order. I’ve been here as long as you have””


    Good evening all. Great to read all the posts. I’m happy today as I weighed in this morning at 0.2 kg off my goal loss for February of 4 kgs. Will be hoping for another 200 gms off by Saturday weigh-in.

    Re Wilbur, I don’t think he was expressing disapproval at being photographed – that’s his “I’m in charge of all I survey” look. He was sitting on my lap at the time – because HE CHOSE to be there. If I lift him up onto my lap, he just jumps straight down again.

    Cinque, loved the photo of Miso – now I have a picture in my mind when you mention her.

    Neilithicman, well done at the cycling distance and weight going down yet again. I agreed with what you said to Turnabout, if her shape has changed due to more muscle less fat, she’s doing well.

    LJoyce, good luck with the 2 FDs interspersed with potentially indulgence days. I’m facing a potential indulgence meal on Saturday evening with one of my church groups meeting for a dinner, everyone bringing a “plate”. As the group is a mix of ethnicities, there will be many diverse food temptations to navigate. I’ll try to be good(-ish).

    Quacka, hope you avoided an afternoon “pig out”!

    Like the idea of going down a shoe size. I wear a size 7 now, though really I’m a 61/2. It would be good to be back to size 6.

    Doctor’s visit went okay today. He didn’t ask about my weight, which was a relief. Next appointment mid-April, when I’ll also have the flu injection. With the risk of the coronavirus, it’s best not to risk flu as well. I’ve read that some of the folk with the coronavirus also had the flu and it made them sicker.

    Keep well everyone!

    Happy Birthday, LJ! https://ae01.alicdn.com/kf/HTB1BcQnOVXXXXcmapXXq6xXFXXXc/European-style-living-room-simulation-flower-ornaments-artificial-silk-flower-floral-bedroom-set-font-b-orchid.jpg I hope you’re having a great day and eating lots of yummy things, because it’s your birthday and you can! 🎂

    Neil, congrats on your amazing cycling of over 1000km already this year. Think how much good that does for body and strength. I love your quote about fat being like a squatter or vagrant. Perfect analogy I think. I will remember that one.

    Cinque, you must have posted a picture of Miso in the past or did a great job of describing her because she is just like I pictured her. That white fungus sounds interesting. Do you have a picture? Have fun with your sisters.

    Betsy, Wilbur is a handsome guy. He looks quite smug about having his picture taken. I have a fondness for orange cats.

    Well my iPad battery needs to be recharged, so I’ll have to post more later. Have a good day everyone.

    Good morning everyone

    Happy Birthday LJ! Hope you have a lovely day x

    I also think about the calories in avocado but then I remember how good it is for me and try not to stress too much. The avocado does go really well in that salad and I find it best if they are not too ripe. I like it when they are only just ripe as they hold their shape a lot better after mixing it up in the salad. It’s not the best when they are mushy, I’d rather have that on some nice grainy toast with vegemite underneath it and black pepper on top. Mmmmm.

    Thanks Betsy, I did manage to avoid the pig out in the afternoon. Lol. After lunch I had about six of these little chilli flavoured rice cracker wheels that I buy in the pick n mix at Coles. (I could eat a whole bag of them but I only bought 6 to avoid the temptation!) Then we went out to dinner at the local pub and I had a chicken burger and a few chips. I am paying for it today. I had heartburn last night and at times during the night and this morning I actually have a sore tummy. So today a nice light eating day – maybe miso soup for lunch and a bit of fruit. We are having steak and veggies for dinner that we were supposed to have last night but someone was too lazy to cook! Oh, and lots of water.

    I love the quote too, Neil.

    Ok, I better go start my day. I’ve been lazing in bed with a cup of tea so I should get up and do something productive. Firstly, a big glass of water……

    Have a lovely weekend all 🙂

    Good morning all and happy Friday

    Happy birthday LJ!

    Miso is gorgeous Cinque 🙂

    I’ve had a good couple of days and the scales have gone in the right direction. You hit the nail on the head LJ; when I had the trip and the coat to motivate me all was well. So OH and I said we might go to Fiji later this year so I have made a pact that we can’t go unless I lose at least 5 kilos in the next 3 months. I would love to go so that is highly motivating

    We’ve got 10 friends coming for a barbie / pool party tomorrow. We’re doing (all home made):
    – chicken & bacon spring rolls
    – sweet, spicy, sticky chicken skewers
    – fiery pork ribs
    – black bean and garlic vege skewers
    – slow cooked lamb shoulder shredded and put in hunks of bagette with OH’s awesome gravy that he had cooking for hours yesterday

    The house is getting an overdue good clean and Maxx is resting up in anticipation. I will be so busy preparing, serving and chatting that I won’t have time to eat much – so that is a good thing.

    Have a great day all and hi to everyone I don’t have time to mention

    Good morning all.

    Thank you for the birthday wishes.

    I’m just having brekkie – homemade muesli (which I haven’t had for 2 months) and a pot of tea. Then I have to rush as I have a hairdresser appointment up in the hills.

    I was brave/foolish enough to hop on the scales this morning to see what the end result was for February. I was 78.9 which was a smidgen higher than I was hoping for, but it is ok – certainly better than the 84kg that I was in early December. Another 2 months of being really careful every day and I should be able to get back to normal 5:2.

    Have a nice day all.

    Happy Birthday LJoyce! https://i.pinimg.com/564x/66/52/25/6652258f031c64b31a6768a7e89cda26.jpg

    Hope you find your light raincoat soon, but hooray to have those trousers ready for next summer.
    Not too bad a birthday present from your scales, yum for homemade muesli, and a hairdressing will feel lovely. Enjoy the day.

    Quacka, hooray for a quiet work day, finally! You need a month of them to balance out those busy ones.
    Cheers for a good scale reading and not letting your self go ballistic in the afternoon. Hooray for starting the day with a big glass of water.

    That black bean salad would be so delicious and look absolutely gorgeous too.
    Can I copy it onto the bean thread? https://thefastdiet.co.uk/forums/topic/beans-and-lentils-recipes-tips-and-information/page/3/#post-306690
    I agree about the firmer avocados, you would want all the colours to stay separate and shiny.

    LJoyce, you inspired the ‘bean of the month’ idea for black beans. I have just gone through to look for black bean recipes on the thread. A salad of Cali’s is there! But I want to try the Cuban soup.

    The Lenten fasts are fascinating. Thanks for your suggestion, still pondering. I think they traditionally saved all their oil etc up for the big Easter feast at the end of it, which does sound like a sensible way to enjoy a feast.

    Speaking of which we had a lovely one last night. I made a
    Parsi chicken curry,
    mattar paneer (peas and cheese),
    a lemony dal,
    a big chucumber salad
    and millet
    and a bowl of yoghurt
    and then at my sister’s request I made naan and it was the best ones I have ever made.

    However, when I planned it I thought I had a good balance of foods but when it came to eating I thought it wasn’t balanced. Yep, not nearly enough veggies.
    I also cracked a bottle of wine I had in the pantry and so enjoyed a small glass of it! I hoped a little drink would help me sleep. Sadly it worked the other way and I had a bad night and this morning I feel like that grasshopper that has just hit the windscreen. I think I can put a great part of it down to alcohol intolerance. So sad. So cruel.

    On the upside, lots of delicious leftovers to eat and the wine we didn’t drink is in containers in the freezer and hopefully when I use it in cooking I will be fine.

    Neil, what a great analogy that comedian used. Haha.

    Betsy, nice work with your weight loss.
    Haha Wilbur does look like the lord of all he surveys.
    I’m glad your doctor’s appt went well. Was it this appt you were going to check re your reflux?

    Cali, I do think I posted another pic of Miso the cat quite a while ago.

    Here is such a cute one from when she was a kitten https://imgur.com/a/6ueGc3y

    Anzac, excellent news. Hooray for the right direction. And for a new and wonderful goal.
    I might have a leftover feast in my fridge, but my mouth is watering for every single one of your planned dishes!

    I can rest through the day and then we are all going to the fete at my granddaughters school.


    Anzac, it makes me smile to read about your barbie/pool party when it’s still winter here with some spring starting to sneak in with temps around 21 or 22 during the day today and yesterday. Your menu sounds great. But I’m puzzled by the “Black bean and vegetables skewers”. How does one put a black bean on a skewer? 🤔

    Cinque, Miso’s collar looks almost as big as she does in that picture. What a cutie! I love the menu you made for your sisters. Indian and middle eastern foods have always been a favorite. We were talking about black bean recipes and I found this one for black bean soup that is supposedly the one from a restaurant called Solomon Grundy’s in Berkeley many years ago. They had the best black bean soup ever. I’ve tried this recipe and ended up playing with the ingredients a bit but it’s close to what I remember. The sherry is crucial. The alcohol will cook off. Also, crumbled hard boiled egg and a squeeze of lemon on top are the way I remember it.

    Solomon Grundy’s Black Bean Soup

    Serves 10

    8 ounces black beans
    1 teaspoon oregano
    1 teaspoon garlic powder
    1 teaspoon black pepper
    1 tablespoon ham base
    3 quarts, 6 ounces water
    2 1/2 ounces sherry
    6 ounces flour
    6 ounces oil
    1 teaspoon thyme
    1/2 teaspoon celery salt
    2 bay leaves
    1 tablespoon grated egg
    Lemon slice

    1. Place black beans into a 4-quart cooking pot. Add spices, ham base and water.
    Bring to a boil and simmer for 2 hours.
    2. Add sherry. Prepare roux by mixing oil and flour in a small bowl. Mix thoroughly
    and add to the pot, stirring constantly.
    3. Set fire below simmering point and cook for 15 more minutes. Garnish with a
    lemon slice and grated egg.

    — Recipe from “Solomon Grundy’s Cookbook.”

    LJ, glad the scales were kind this morning. Forget them until the birthday celebrations are over. 🍰

    Quacka, the firm avocados are my favorite but lately when they’ve been on sale I’ve ended up with a few that sat too long and were a little mushy but not brown. They really went well in mixed green salads with cucumbers, red capsicum, tomatoes, Baco-s, balsamic vinegar, olive oil and spices, all mixed together well to moosh the avocados in with the oil. (I use very little oil, maybe a Tbs or two.

    Ha ha Cali – it is black bean sauce MARINADE! And we cheated and used the bottled one as we had so much to do.

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