Friday, April 30, 2010

more fud

Breakfast: Banana oats with cinnamon, raisins and peanut butter.
Lunch: Stir-fried chicken with cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, onion, chilli, tamarind and a little steamed rice.
Dinner: Burger and chips (fries), 1 slice of brown bread.

We fancied a Friday night treat, so I put a couple of burgers on the George Foreman, and a medium portion of oven chips each into the oven. We ate the burgers with sesame buns, a little light mayo, light cheddar, onions, lettuce and ketchup. The slice of bread was for the obligatory chip sandwich. :)

We also got two beers and a small bar of Galaxy chocolate each, which we have not yet enjoyed, but I plan to! Not a low calorie day but hey.

Was very shocked and saddened to hear of the death of Gerry Ryan today. RIP Gerry.

In brighter news we have a wedding to celebrate tomorrow. Unfortunately the dress I am planning to wear is now too big. A good complaint I suppose!


Breakfast: Bagel with ham and cheese on one side, and jam on the other.
Snack: 2 mandarins.
Lunch: 1 hard-boiled egg, 1 slice light cheddar, 50g wafer thin ham, crudités (cucumber and peppers). 100g natural yoghurt with 10 grapes and 20g granola.
Dinner: Out at a friend's place. Bobotie (a South African dish made with minced beef, curry spices, chutney and fruit, topped with egg and baked), with rocket salad and half of a poppyseed bread roll. Dessert was a mixture of pureed mango with natural yoghurt and topped with passion-fruit. Tea and 1 Lindt chocolate.
At the cinema: 2 jelly babies.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

official weigh-day

Today the scale showed 243.2, which is a loss of 1.4 pounds this week. I'm happy with that.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

history will be kind to me, for I intend to write it

We just ate the moussaka, and I've added an image below if you want a nosey. It was really delicious. Delighted!

We both worked hard at the gym and I was suitably purple-faced and sweaty when we headed for home. The heaviest weight I lifted was again on the leg-press, at 141kg (310.2lbs)! I need to have a shower but I have the post-workout chills and don't much like the thought of diving under jets of water right now. Until I do, Husband Unit will have to tolerate the stink.

Food today:

Breakfast: Banana oats with cinnamon, raisins and peanut butter.
Snack: 2 mandarins.
Lunch: Half a wholewheat pitta bread stuffed with egg salad (2 hard boiled eggs, mashed and mixed with light mayo) with about 50g of wafer-thin ham, and some crudités.
Dinner: Moussakka with a salad of butterhead lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes and green peppers.
Snack: Cup of tea with 1 digestive biscuit (for the Americans reading, that's similar to a Graham cracker, only round, and nicer :p).

My friend brought round his digital 8-track machine to lend to me so that I can record some songs. I have also decided (five minutes ago) that I am now a writer, and am going to have a go at devoting a few hours every day to my new job: writing. :)


I made a moussaka this morning for our evening meal...that way we can pop it in the oven, go to the gym, and come home to a delicious cooked meal.

I made this version a while ago, and it was amazing, but I wanted a slightly less luxurious and calorific version to bring it into our everyday repertoire, so this is what I did. This recipe has approximately 2500 calories in it total, so one sixth of that is approximately 420 calories.

500g lean lamb mince
1 onion, chopped
1.5 cans of chopped tomatoes
3 cloves of garlic, crushed
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp mixed spice
2 bay leaves
1/2 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste

2 large aubergines

1 tablespoon butter
1 heaped tablespoon flour
1 pint low-fat milk
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan
1 tablespoon grated mozzarella
1 whole raw egg

1. Brown the lamb mince in a large saucepan with the onions and garlic. Drain off the fat and discard it. Return the pan of meat, onions and garlic to the heat.
2. Add tomatoes, herbs, spices, red wine vinegar and seasoning. Stir well and leave to simmer for an hour. Stir and taste from time to time.
3. Slice the aubergines lengthwise and salt them. Leave them for 30 minutes to draw out the bitter juices.
4. Make the cheese sauce. Melt the butter in a small saucepan. Add the flour and stir well. Cook this paste on a low heat for 5 minutes (this gets rid of a floury taste). Remove from the heat. Stir in the milk, one splash at a time, until you have a lump-free mixture. It should be thin and smooth. Return to the heat and bring to the boil, stirring constantly, until thick and creamy. Lower the heat and continue to stir and simmer for five minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the cheeses. They should melt immediately. Leave aside to cool.
5. Rinse the aubergines and pat dry. Heat a cast-iron griddle pan and spray lightly with olive oil. Fry each of the aubergine slices briefly on both sides until lightly charred and tender. Set aside.
6. Whisk the raw egg into the cheese sauce.
7. Begin layering like a lasagna. Ideally you should have a layer of meat, then aubergines, then meat, then aubergines, then meat, then the cheese sauce. However I ran out of meat and had to put the cheese sauce on top of a layer of aubergines, oops! This should not make a huge difference but it won't look as attractive.
8. Bake at 180 Celsius for 45 mins approx, until bubbly and golden. If you are baking it from cold (as I will be) allow another 15 minutes or so for the cooking time.

Eat with a chunky salad!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

painting and paella

I had a good day! It seems like the first one in a while. It was nothing exciting...I got up for the usual prayer and breakfast at 7ish, and then went back to bed for a cheeky little nap after my husband had left for work. I got up and did some cleaning (a rarity lately) and some reading. A friend called in for lunch and ended up staying most of the day, until after dinner. I got on the train and opened the book of Romans (specifically chapter 7), where I had my mind blown once again by God's amazing challenge to a life that rejects rules and norms and restrictions and expectations. I went to group therapy where we discussed using creativity to aid recovery. It was a very exciting conversation. What can I do, personally and collaboratively, to learn to use my gifts creatively in a way that aids my emotional well-being? I'm going to give this some thought this week. The thoughts of painting, or sculpture, or recording music or whatever... these things seem like bright and hopeful activities. Any of the locals reading, if you want to do something together, let me know.


Breakfast: Bagel with peanut butter and half a banana.
Lunch: Half a large wholewheat pitta with ham, cheese, lettuce, cucumber, boiled egg and peppers, followed by mixed berries and a little natural yoghurt.
Dinner: Paella.

The paella was good. I have no idea if it was in any way authentic, as I've never eaten it before. Here's what I did and it served three hungry people with a little left over:

225g risotto/paella rice
800ml chicken stock
100ml white wine
140g raw prawns (you can use cooked ones either)
1 large chicken breast, cubed
Half a chorizo ring, sliced
1 red pepper
1 green pepper
Handful green beans (I used fine beans)
1 onion, chopped
5 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 small red chillis, chopped
2 tsp. smoked paprika
Salt and pepper

1. Fry chorizo until it releases its lovely flavourful oils. Set aside. Fry chicken in chorizo oil. Set aside. Fry prawns. Set aside.
2. Fry onion, garlic and chillis in the remaining oil until soft.
3. Add rice and peppers. Stir to coat with oil. Add stock, wine and smoked paprika. Stir well.
4. Leave to simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
5. Add cooked meats and green beans. Stir well. Simmer for 10 minutes until everything is thoroughly heated though.
6. Taste, season and eat. Delicious!

I'd say the important bit is the quantity of liquid to the quantity of rice. The rest you could play about with, adding more or less of the meats, fish and vegetables as you prefer. I would also consider highering the ratio of wine to stock next time, maybe 250ml / 650ml. Anyway, it's very tasty. :)

Monday, April 26, 2010

monday mundanity

Still not feeling 100% physically (still having abdominal pain etc.), but emotionally I feel quite a bit better. Last night I really argued with myself about food. Specifically I back-and-forthed about ordering a Chinese takeaway. The Husband Unit also fancied one. But I decided in the end that I was definitely doing it to make myself feel better, and that's not a good motivation for eating (for me). So I contented myself with another delicious and exciting glass of water.

Food today:

Breakfast: Watermelon and honeydew melon, 2 slices apricot bread and a little cheese.
Lunch: Pork stir fried Chinese-style with carrots, onions and mushrooms, with a tablespoonful of egg noodles.
Snack: Apple.
Dinner: Red lentil dhal with home-made rotis.

I saw "Cemetery Junction" today and it was great. I had a moment (or two) of overwhelming longing when queuing to buy our tickets at the concession stand, surrounded by sweets, chocolate, popcorn and nachos.

I bought shoes for an upcoming wedding (€4!) and we went to IKEA for a filing cabinet which is being enthusiastically constructed as I type. Here too I resisted the meatballs and Daim cake, as well as loading up on treats to take home in their supermarket section. I really do feel bombarded by food wherever I go. :(

Might hit the gym tonight...but the Indian spices from the dhal do tend to repeat if you work out after eating. Mmm. Are the spice-burps worth it?

Sunday, April 25, 2010

strawberry smoothie dessert

So I made smoothies for me and the Husband Unit for our evening meal. They were delicious and filling, so I thought I'd share. Bear in mind they have quite a few calories, which is why they make a good meal, as opposed to a drink. I will probably make them again for a quick breakfast. If you want to cut calories, leave out the peanut butter and maple syrup.

These smoothies are very thick. If you like them thinner, use less strawberries or more juice/milk. I like them thick, because it's like having a big glass of dessert.

This makes about 2 pints, so 2 large servings (450 calories approx each) or 4 medium (225 calories approx each).


350g frozen strawberries
150g strawberry yoghurt (I used Glenisk low-fat)
1 banana
1 cup of orange juice
Half a cup of low-fat milk
Quarter cup of oats
1 tablespoon of maple syrup
2 teaspoons of peanut butter


Blend. Eat with a spoon. :)


Last night we went to a great seafood restaurant in Howth, called "Deep". I had goat's cheese, followed by cod, and the Husband Unit had fish cakes, followed by blackened salmon.

It was wonderful.

We also walked on the pier with 99s. For anyone who has never experienced a 99, it's a vanilla soft-serve ice cream on a wafer cone with a chocolate flake stuck in it. (I only managed to eat about a third of mine...I just can't do quantity the way I used to.) 99s are fantastic and are the stuff of memories for Irish kids growing up in the eighties and nineties.


Breakfast: Pumpkin banana oats with cinnamon, raisins and peanut butter.
Main meal: Grilled chicken breast with a roasted sweet potato and ratatouille with chorizo.
Evening: Nothing yet. Maybe some fruit salad and yoghurt.

I am feeling physically unwell, and emotionally extremely out of sorts. I didn't make it to church today. The urge to binge hovers on the fringes at all times. It's lashing rain and earlier, I heard the biggest thunderclap I've ever heard in my life. Even though the rain is depressing (and the cold - and I can't turn the heat on because the boiler needs to be serviced), I do enjoy thunder and lightning. I always have. Is that odd?

Saturday, April 24, 2010


Last night at the party, across about 5 hours, I ate lots of melon, raspberries and watermelon, 3 grape and cheese sticks, 3 nachos with M's delicious dip, 7 Pringles, 2 jelly sweets, 1 chocolate-dipped strawberry, a slice of carrot cake, a handful of crisps and a few peanuts. I drank water and Diet 7up.

Written down it does seem rather a lot (oops). However, it was a million miles from a binge, and it's better to acknowledge the quantity than to deny it. I did avoid excess with any particular food, and also steered clear of the cupcakes and other quickly-eaten calorie-laden treats. I really enjoyed myself and danced also for at least three hours.

Food today:

Brunch: 1 egg, two sausages and a bagel.
Snack: Handful grapes.
Dinner: Variable! We're going out somewhere for date-night.

The sun has disappeared, along with my good mood. A trip to the cinema is in order. S'long folks.

Friday, April 23, 2010

that friday feeling

It's another beautiful sunny day here.

I managed to make it to the Friday morning prayer meeting (8am) ...I'm always so glad when I go. We were even up early enough to walk. :)

Speaking of prayer meetings, the commitment that the Husband Unit made with me to meet for prayer and breakfast every single morning has continued since Day 1. This has been so important to me. Being unemployed, it gives me a good reason to get up early. It also encourages me to prepare a good breakfast, and start the day's eating on the right foot. It's also a chance to get a solid thirty minutes together each day, in a lifestyle where we often don't see much of each other. I wish we had done this years ago.

Breakfast: 40g of granola with rhubarb yoghurt. (The rhubarb yoghurt was too sweet...I'll stick to natural yoghurt in future.)
Snack: 2 small slices of apricot bread.
Lunch: Bagel with grilled chicken breast, roasted pickled peppers, salad, Parmesan shavings and Caesar dressing.
Dinner: Spicy prawn and vegetable stir-fry, I think. Something with fresh prawns anyway.
Post-dinner snacks: I'm going to a party. I'm bringing a fresh fruit platter to share so I'll eat some of that, and possibly a slice of birthday cake, but hopefully not much more than that.

...and that's all I have to say about that. Hope you all are preparing for a fun and restful weekend. I plan to dance, cycle and eat good food. :)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

the wind was so gentle it tied my shoe-laces

Breakfast: Pumpkin banana oats with cinnamon, raisins and peanut butter.
Lunch: This was so crap! I was out and got a brown bread sandwich with ham, cheese and red onion, with a cup of vegetable soup. The soup was lukewarm and inedible, and the sandwich tasted like cardboard. I was hungry so I ate three-quarters of it. It came with a handful of crisps (that's chips to the Americans reading) and I ate those. I also ate four chicken bites from my God-daughter's Burger King meal!
Snack: 2 mandarins.
Dinner: Leftovers from yesterday - spicy sausage in a tomato sauce with mixed vegetables and 40g pasta.

Today was nice. Not only did I get to spend time with three of my favourite people and soak up some sun, I also got some treats, courtesy of the Husband Unit, who announced that I should "go crazy". So I did. :)

I bought myself a really good urea-based facial moisturiser and some really good Max Factor foundation, as well as some (very cheap) nail polish, eyeliner, lip gloss and concealer. I also got a new black boyfriend cardigan (as opposed to a new black boyfriend), which goes with everything. I always feel a little guilty buying things for myself. Still, I'm really chuffed with my purchases and looking forward to trying them all out.

There's a lot of stuff going on in my head but I'm still not in a position to really write about it. Maybe another day.

Tally-ho, bean-poles!

official weigh-day

The scale this morning said 244.6. That's a loss of 2.6 lbs this week.

I have a really nice day and lunch with a good friend, followed by a walk in Donadea Forest Park with another friend later.

Shout out to Deborah who is graduating from her Masters degree today. Whoo! :)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

death to the old self

Yesterday was the worst, darkest, most tormented, loneliest day I've had since starting on this journey. Some days the urge to binge just strikes and takes a strangling hold of me. My surroundings suddenly fade to grey and I can't see anything beautiful, in me or anyone or anything. All I can hear is screaming in my head. I felt angry about not having anyone to talk to, but couldn't bring myself to ask anyone to talk because, no matter how much I am loved, most people in my life simply do not understand ED. Understandable, seeing as they haven't got it. I became panicked about the normal planning of meals and going outdoors, because I didn't trust myself not to buy junk food secretly and eat all of it. I am desperately afraid of binging. I don't mean that in the abstract: I actually have fear in my heart at the prospect of having a binge. Ironically, I'm simultaneously filled with fear about never binging again, as binging has definitely served a clear purpose in my life, getting me through very difficult times.

My stress levels were through the roof. I choked down about half of my dinner and then left for Group Therapy. I need to take two trains to get to the clinic - all in all it takes about an hour. While I was waiting on the platform for my connecting train, I was hit with the stabbing pain in my intestines that indicates a bout of IBS. This was of course stress-induced. I needed to to use a bathroom, but in order to find one, I'd have to miss my connecting train to the clinic. So that's what I had to do.

By the time the pain and waves of nausea had passed, I had long missed my train and the next one would have meant arriving 45 minutes late to the group, which is simply not fair on the others. I felt desolate. I thought about buying sweets and crisps to cheer myself up; I thought about getting a latte and a pastry. I actually stood and looked at the contents of a vending machine for a few minutes. I eventually got back on the train, went home, and curled up on the bed at 9pm, and just read.

When the husband unit got back from work, he joined me, reading too. At about midnight I finally started talking to him and it helped. He is reading the book my therapist wrote, "Hope" but more than that, he is listening carefully and without judgment when I try to discuss the ED. He was so compassionate and understanding and helpful that I felt much calmer going to sleep. I did take a pill to help me sleep though...I've had several sleepless nights and I couldn't take another one, with eight solid hours of thoughts of food pounding in my brain.

I woke this morning and, as before, the cloud had lifted. I have spent the morning reflecting, journalling and praying and reading some posts on the website that my therapy group share, for some positive encouragement.

Food today:

Breakfast: Cinnamon and raisin bagel with peanut butter and half a banana.
Lunch: Scrambled eggs and a wholewheat pitta. Watermelon.
Dinner: Spicy sausage in a tomato sauce with onions, garlic, mushrooms and red peppers, with spaghetti.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


I am hunger.

All day. I feel bad, and freezing cold. I'm glad I have group therapy to look forward to tonight. (Bizarre eh?)

Breakfast: 2 pumpkin muffins, toasted, with a little jam and peanut butter.
Lunch: Wholewheat pitta with cheese and a little coleslaw and a large mixed salad, with lots of beetroot.
Snack: Half a cup of low fat milk, 2 chunks of watermelon.
Dinner: Roast chicken, gravy, potatoes, carrots and broccoli.

I forgot to add yesterday that I ate a square of dark chocolate with tea after lunch. Not that it matters...but just for the sake of full disclosure.

I hope this feeling passes.

Monday, April 19, 2010

food recap

Breakfast: Cinnamon and raisin bagel with peanut butter and half a banana.
Snack: A few raisins while baking...and then I had to sample a muffin. It would have been wrong not to! :)
Lunch: Small wholemeal pitta bread with ham, light cheddar, a hard boiled egg, beetroot, mixed leaves, peppers and 1 spoonful of coleslaw. 2 slices of melon.
Snack: 5 grapes
Dinner: Baked chicken breast with a pesto stuffing (breadcrumbs, basil pesto, parmesan cheese) with sauteed broccoli, yellow and orange peppers and cashew nuts, dressed with soy and a little maple syrup.

pumpkin muffins

Well, once again, it's not pumpkin, it's pureed butternut squash, because you can't get pumpkin in Ireland at this time of year. These are bready breakfast-style muffins rather than treats.

This recipe makes 12. Approx 125 kcals per muffin.

I recommend using non-stick baking parchment in the muffin trays rather than the muffin paper cases shown above, as due to the lack of fat in these, they do tend to stick to the muffin paper. You'll need a set of American measuring cups to make these...they used to be hard to come by, but now you can buy a set in any Tesco.

These are my own creation! And tasty too if I may say so.

1/2 cup of brown sugar (well, this ain't wet, but it goes in with the wet stuff!)
1/8 cup of soft butter
1 egg
1/2 cup of low-fat milk, and an extra splash
1/2 cup butternut squash puree (or pumpkin, obviously)

1 cup of wholewheat flour
1/2 cup of plain flour
1/4 cup of porridge oats
1/4 cup of raisins
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt

1. Preheat oven to 190 Celsius and line your muffin trays with squares of non-stick baking parchment.
2. Beat the butter and sugar together with a wooden spoon until light and fluffy. Add the egg, milk and butternut squash and whisk well.
3. Sieve your flours together in a large bowl and add all of the other dry ingredients. Stir.
4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix until you have a batter.
5. Fill the 12 muffin cases and bake for 20-25 minutes until risen, golden and when pricked with a knife, it comes out clean.
6. Eat!

Sunday, April 18, 2010


Breakfast: Granola and natural yoghurt.
Lunch (BBQ): 1 burger in a bun with cheese, lettuce and onions, 1 regular sausage on a slice of French bread with onions and ketchup, 1 Bratwurst sausage on 2 slices of French bread with ketchup, half of a marinated pork kebab, 1 glass of 7-up.
Evening: 2 bites of banana and a handful of grapes.

It was another beautiful day; not quite as sunny but beautiful, warm and dry nonetheless. I cycled everywhere. I'm still crapping myself (not literally you understand), and my arse hurts a lot, but I'm enjoying it.

The husband unit and I ate a small breakfast at 9am. Lunch was at 2pm, and I was absolutely ravenous. I ate far too much and spent the afternoon feeling ill, bloated and regretful.

I struggle to write in-depth here about the emotional battles of ED. I don't even know if I can do it now. But I decided today, while having a late afternoon "nap" that I would use the BBQ as a learning experience. When I am very hungry, I should eat one thing and pause for ten minutes. If I find I am still hungry, I can eat a serving of something else. I do not need to leap in and grab as much as possible as fast as possible. What I did today was not emotional eating, it was habitual. I stuffed myself because I was extremely hungry, and did not listen to the signals of my body telling me that it had had enough, long before I stopped eating. As a result I felt ill and worse, regretful. Every incidence of over-eating acts like a trigger for me.

Anyway, new dawn new day and all that.


So we took our freshly serviced as-yet-unridden bicycles from the shed on this gloriously sunny day and set off for Kevin's sister's house. We quickly realised that my tyres were completely flat. This is very angering, because I paid €25 to a guy to service the whole bike which includes, you know, putting air in the tyres and basically...nothing else. Grr! I'm going down there on Monday to fight with them for handing my bike back to me, charging me buttloads of cash and doing absolutely nothing to it. I demand a recount. I mean refund.

After a lot of effort, we figured out how to pump up the tyres. The difficulty is that it is a vintage bike and doesn't have standard fittings. The husband unit was stellar. After 30 minutes of frustration, we were finally ready to go.

I cannot emphasise enough how nerve-wracking it is at 247lbs and having not been on a bicycle for 15 years to get out into traffic, but I did it. It was a little wobbly and my steering was terrible, but we got there. Also my shoes kept threatening to come off. In the moments where my little heart wasn't still with terror, I even quite enjoyed it. The sun, the freedom, the wind whipping in my hair...I think I'm going to enjoy this! We're planning another short adventure tomorrow to church.

For lunch I ate: 1 slice of ham, 1 slice of turkey, 1 tablespoon of some kind of Greek chicken dish, 1 chicken nugget, 1 slice of garlic bread and 2 tablespoons of tomatoey pasta. No vegetables! There was a green salad but it was literally drenched in dressing, and I like my dressings sparse. For dessert I went for the lightest option - pavlova (for the non-Europeans, that's meringue with cream and fruit). In this case, there was no fruit on top, but lemon curd and almonds instead. It was extremely sweet and I didn't really enjoy it, but I kept eating. I don't even know why. I also had a slice of Malteaser cake - 1/16th of the whole thing. This was also too sweet and dense. I am losing my sweet tooth!

For dinner we went as planned to a new Mexican place. I think it was a chain restaurant actually - Cactus Jacks? It was good. I wasn't too hungry so I just had a starter of tortilla chips with chilli, salsa and sour cream. It was delicious, but I only managed half of it.

bed nw slepy asdb

Saturday, April 17, 2010

fall schmall

Ta an ghrian ag taitneamh go hard sa spéir inniú! The sun is shining brightly in the sky today. We're planning to bike over to my husband's sister's house for her daughter's birthday party today. It's not far, but I haven't been on a bike in 15 years, and the chances of falling on my face repeatedly are very high indeed.

I'm looking forward to it though. A friend bequeathed her bicycle to me when she left the country recently. I had it serviced and the saddle replaced. It's a girl's dream...basket, ribbons, a bell... never what I would have gone for but it is so pretty. I plan to attach square wheels and cycle over mountains at sunset to the amazement of villagers below.

Planned food:

Late breakfast: Cinnamon and raisin bagel, with some peanut butter and a sliced banana.
Lunch: Party-food...knowing my sister-in-law, there'll be two feasts; one for the littlers and one for us. Ours will probably be something very lavish and exotic, and lots of it, as well as mounds of rice and salads, and ten kinds of desserts. She doesn't do things by halves.
Dinner: Date-night. We're going out. To do what has not yet been decided, but we're thinking of going to one of the new Mexican restaurants in the Italian quarter in town. I'll try not to feel too guilty for abandoning our usual Mexican haunt, where we have been eating for twelve glorious years. ¡Ay, caramba!

So, it's mostly variables. I'm going to enjoy whatever I have, and just try to watch my portion sizes.

Friday, April 16, 2010

go underdogs!

Last night we went to the cinema to see "The Blind Side". I really enjoyed it. Apart from it being a genuinely great (and true) story, it was refreshing to see Christians portrayed positively in a creative medium for once. I know we deserve our bad rep, but hey, there's good stuff there too.

At the cinema I had a 46g bar of Galaxy chocolate. It was great.

Food today:

Breakfast: 2 small slices of apricot bread, 100g of yoghurt with a tablespoon of blueberries, 1 slice of light cheddar and a handful of grapes. A mish-mash, but really good.
Lunch: 1 egg, 2 tablespoons of baked beans and 2 slices of poppyseed toast.
Snack: 2 mandarins, 1 square of 85% dark chocolate.
Dinner: Fish pie (made with salmon and prawns) topped with mashed potato, and lots of steamed broccoli on the side.
Post dinner: I helped Kevin make a cake for our niece's birthday party tomorrow, and I ate 3 Malteasers and then I licked the spoon. If you know what I mean. :)

Today I have been quite hungry and have had to operate some self-control with portions. Most days I don't feel physically hungry except right before mealtimes (this does not diminish the constant urge to binge, which remains present, whether faintly or at a high volume, almost all of the time). I am off out to the pub now to spend the evening with some friends. I won't be having any alcohol as my kidneys couldn't take it right now, but that's ok. I know I will be tempted by the crisps and peanuts. I don't know what to say about that because I have a "no deprivation" policy. If I really want some, I'll have some I suppose. A small portion of nuts never hurt anybody...except for all those people who've gone into anaphylactic shock and you know, died. Cheers everyone!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

official weigh-day

So the scale this morning read 247.2, which is a loss of 3.8lbs this week. Again, very surprising. I really have denied myself nothing. Except binging.

Kidneys still giving me jip.

And I didn't get that job I applied for. I'm ok with that.


Brunch (1pm): Pumpkin banana oats with cinnamon and peanut butter, and a sesame bagel with light cheddar.
Snack: Grapes.
Dinner: Chilli con carne (beef, onions, peppers, tomatoes, garlic, kidney beans and spices) with all the trimmings - rice, salad, corn, salsa, sour cream, cheese.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


Breakfast: 1 boiled egg on 1 slice Polish poppyseed toast.
Snack: 1 square 85% dark chocolate and a handful of strawberries.
Lunch: Small white roll stuffed with home-made egg mayo (leftover hardboiled egg, mashed, and mixed with light mayo and sliced scallions), ham and baby spinach leaves, with 1 slice of light cheddar and a handful of grapes.
Snack: 1 small slice apricot bread (this is wowza).
Planned dinner: Home-made burrito. A flour tortilla stuffed with spiced minced beef, onions, lettuce, tomato, spicy rice, salsa, refried beans and light cheddar, baked briefly and topped with sour cream.

I'd like to go to the gym, but I still have kidney pain (!) and after just a one hour stroll today, I am wiped. An evening in with the soaps it is.

all alone in the moonlight

At therapy last night I was reminded of a great memory.

When I was about five years old, my mother bought me a bright yellow tracksuit. It was one of those hideous eighties tracksuits, with the round-neck collar, and cuffs on both the wrists and the ankles. The front sweater read "If you think I'm cute, wait til you see my Mummy!" I don't think I got the joke on the front myself, but the adults around me always found it hilarious, so whenever I was wearing that tracksuit, I felt like a million dollars.

One sunny day (it must have been a Sunday...or during my dad's summer holidays from work) I was wearing my yellow tracksuit, complete with ugly navy eighties plimsolls and red-rimmed plastic sunglasses. I thought I looked so stunningly fantastic that I dragged a deckchair into the front garden and there I sat, in front of the garage, on display for all of the neighbours to admire. This not being enough, I summoned my dad from inside the house to come out and take a photo of me, thus providing proof of how phenomenal I looked, for all time.

That photo still exists, and in it I am gazing toothily up at the camera, all scraggly-haired, legs crossed, a la sophisticated women in high fashion images the world over.

It is an aim of mine that one day I will feel again so unselfconsciously fantastic that I will be dragging somebody out into the sunshine to take photos of my fabulousness to be immortalised forever.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


Dinner last night was soup - horrible, horrible soup. The waiter asked me why I hadn't finished it and I said "because it's crap". He laughed. I laughed. Oh how we laughed.

I went to the doctor this morning because I have been feeling funny for a few days. It turns out I have a kidney infection! Nice. No wonder I was feeling poisoned. I have been complaining of "hip" (I now realise it was pelvic) and back pain for a while. My urine sample was chock-full of all kinds of goodies like excess protein, blood and nitrites. She's put me on a course of antibiotics for a week. Wonderful drugs; sure we'd all be dead without them.

Breakfast: 1 slice of cheese and 5 grapes (rushing).
Snack: 125g rhubarb yoghurt and a handful of strawberries.
Lunch: Chicken breast and home-made wedges (that's right, no veggies! *slaps own wrist*).
Planned dinner: Pumpkin oats with cinnamon and peanut butter.

I've had a few wobbly moments. Last night as I was on my way to meet a friend for a bowl of disgusting soup, not yet knowing that the soup would be foul, I considered going for a sneaky Burger King before seeing her. Nobody would know. I'd probably lose weight anyway. What harm? What harm? I am planning to secretly stuff myself with junk food just before meeting a friend for a meal and I ask myself, what harm? I didn't do it, although I really wanted to. Again, I considered (a) confessing to it here or (b) lying about it here by omission. Neither option seemed good. Don't get me wrong: I have nothing against the odd hamburger and fries meal. Just, you know, not in secret. And not just before your evening meal.

Then this morning, after two hours in the doctor's surgery surrounded by poorly behaved children and their incompetent parents, I went to the supermarket to pick up some fresh fruits and vegetables. Being peckish (having only had a slice of cheese and five grapes) I almost reached for a packet of low-fat Hula Hoops. Then I actually paused and looked at them in my hand. I realised that they weren't really food, and that they would neither satisfy my hunger nor nourish my body...although they might manage to rise in me in insatiable urge to eat more salty snacks. So I bought a package of strawberries and ate some of those on the walk home.

I think I need a nap now; I am not feeling so hot. We ordered a skip to throw out a bunch of old crap we have lying around. Being the sad domesticated old cat that I am, I am actually excited about that. There is nothing I would rather do right now than throw piles of rubbish into the giant metal bin in my front garden. But I'm just too tired! And I want to save a little energy for group therapy tonight, which always takes it out of me.

Thanks for reading, beanpoles!

Monday, April 12, 2010

thank you fibre cubes

Bowel feeling better. Not perfect, but definitely a little better. Hurray! I think the best word to describe how I was feeling yesterday is "poisoned". Today I feel bright, although tired.

Breakfast: Banana oats with 1tsp crunchy peanut butter.
Lunch: Steak, with onions and mushrooms, green salad, and half of a roasted potato and some squash.
Dinner: I'll be out, so I'm planning on soup.

Right, I'm off to go sit in a stylish cafe with my notebook and pen, looking all pensive and romantic, as passers-by ponder the contents of my thoughts.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

i got guts

The day was fine emotionally, but physically I'm not 100%. My digestive system is up in arms (I've had IBS for the last 10 years or so, and am currently enjoying a flare-up), and that really wears me out. I went light on the food today.

Breakfast: Melon and berry salad.
Lunch: Slice of rye bread with 2tsp of crunchy peanut butter and a small banana.
Dinner: Prawn and mixed vegetable stir fry, with about 25g of basmati.
Post dinner snack: Mug of soy hot chocolate.

The husband unit drove to Liffey Valley earlier to get some IBS remedies in Boots, cos he's great like that. Hopefully tomorrow will be more normal. Poop ahoy?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

i just wanna freewheel

Today, it was like being a different person to yesterday. No cravings, no worries, no concerns. I was on dessert duty for a family event and I made tiramisu, hazelnut cheesecake, melon and berry salad and banoffee. I also put together a grape and cheese platter, and the husband unit made Malteaser cake. (I offered to do this a long time ago by the wasn't some self-destructive task or an immense test of will or anything.)

The family event was pleasant; fun even. I am sunburnt and relaxed. I ate too much, but that happens at family events.

Breakfast: Several licks of spoons, a tester's mouthful of Tiramisu and a bite of Malteaser cake.
Brunch (12pm): 2 eggs, 2 slices of bacon, 1 sesame bagel, 1 slice honeydew melon.
Dinner (3.30pm): This was a buffet extravaganza. I ate lasagna, ham, a bread roll, cheese, water biscuits, grapes and salad. For dessert I had a small slice of Malteaser cake (1/12th) and some of the cheesecake (accidentally without the biscuit base). I had one glass of Pinot Grigio.

The fridge is stuffed with leftovers. It's now 8.30pm and we're not sure if we want to eat any more.

I want to get a lot more fruit and vegetables into me this week. It's been a bit of a carb-fest lately. And man. I need to poop.

Friday, April 9, 2010

shitstorm in a teacup (by teacup, I mean me)

Breakfast: 1 slice rye bread, toasted, with 2 tsp of peanut butter and a banana.
Lunch: Half a bowl of leek and potato soup, and most of a ham and cheese panini (same restaurant as yesterday).
Snack: Snack-a-Jacks (a 25g pack of rice and corn snacks...they're like mini-rice cakes).
Dinner: Two field mushrooms, stuffed with goat cheese and baked, atop a mixed leaf salad dressed with a home-made cranberry and balsamic vinaigrette, and some home-made potato wedges.
Exercise: None.

Emotionally today has been a complete and utter nightmare from start to finish. I am calming down now, but I have spent the whole day with an overwhelming and all-consuming urge to binge. Everything around me suddenly became grey and bleak. I tried to think things through rationally, I talked it over with my husband, I ranted, raved and even cried at one point. As my dad might say, I was like a bear with a sore head. I took a nap. I went for a drive. I argued with myself. I am thoroughly exhausted at the end of it all. It has truly been terrible. Whenever I've approached this place in the past, I've calmed the screaming within by stuffing it down with excesses of food. Not so today and fucking hell did it hurt!

On days like today I am reminded why I go to group therapy at an eating distress clinic. Sometimes, I feel like I shouldn't be there. Today, I would have given my right arm to speak to Marie (therapist). The husband unit was almost as good though...he said the thing that I most needed to hear to start simmering down out of this insane, internal tantrum. "You know, giving in to the ED will feel good for a moment, but ultimately, it will kill you."

He's right. Shit fuck fuck!


So yesterday for lunch I ate a bowl of leek and potato soup, with half of a caprese panini (pesto, mozzarella and tomato).

Dinner was at a friend's place. It was pesto chicken with mixed roasted vegetables (courgettes, peppers, onions) and steamed baby potatoes. Dessert was hazelnut cheesecake. I also ate two chocolates and had 1.5 glasses of wine.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

official weigh-day

I weighed in this morning at 251, which is a loss of two and a half pounds this week. Considering the Easter chocolate, desserts, alcohol and fried foods I consumed in the last week I'd consider that as much a small miracle as a victory.

Breakfast today was a slice of rye and sunflower of those big, oblong German slices. I cut it in half and ate part of it with peanut butter and the other part with ham and cheese.

Both lunch and dinner will be eaten out today, so they're variables.

I did 30 minutes strength training last night, as planned. I really enjoyed it. Sometimes I am surprised at my own strength. On the leg press I did 4 sets of 8 reps at 133kg (292.6 lbs)! (Compare that to upper body strength where the most I can usually manage to lift is about 30kg (66lbs).) I came home and made myself a delicious soy latte.

Right, I have to go do some "journalling" (barf). It's actually very helpful!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

return of the blimp

Well, there have been no updates because I have been away visiting my parents.

Food and activity goes as follows:

Breakfast: 2 slices of wholewheat toast with peanut butter.
After church: 2 glasses of champagne with some strawberries, 3 chocolate eclair toffee sweets.
Lunch (at a friend's): A handful of chocolate raisins, a handful of pistachio nuts, several slices of cheese, a white bread roll with ham, 1 tablespoon of Vicki's delicious chicken salad, 2 tablespoons of Sheena's delicious potato salad, some salad greens, 1 slice of roast beef. Another glass of champagne.
Dinner (at my parents' place): Cold, sliced smoked ham, boiled egg, salad greens, tomatoes and 1 slice of batch bread with butter.
After dinner: 1 hot port.
Exercise: None.

Monday (still with the parents):
Breakfast: 2 slices of wholewheat toast, 1 cold boiled egg.
Snack: 14g of raisins.
Dinner: More smoked ham with steamed potatoes, carrots and turnip, with parsley sauce. Raspberry trifle.
Snack: 1 apple.
Evening meal: 1 cup of vegetable soup, 2 slices of brown batch bread with cheese and a large slice of watermelon.
After dinner: 1 hot port.
Exercise: 40 minute leisurely swim, and a 45 minute walk on the beach.

Tuesday (with the parents until 4pm):
Breakfast: Chocolate banana oats.
Snack: 1 Twister ice pop.
Lunch: 1 rasher, 1 sausage, 1 egg, 1 slice of white pudding, handful of chips, 2 slices of white sliced pan and butter.
Snack: 1 apple.
Dinner: Chicken Caesar salad with shredded carrots and cherry tomatoes.
At a birthday party later: 1 gin and tonic.
Exercise: 6km walk.

Wednesday, today, so far (home again!):
Breakfast: Banana raisin oats with 1 tsp of peanut butter.
Lunch: Sesame Caesar bagel with rocket and red peppers.
Planned dinner: Home-made chicken curry with basmati.
Exercise: 1 hour walk in the sunshine.
Planned exercise: 30 mins strength training at the gym.

Well. I have lots of reflecting to do on the last few days, but now is not the moment, as I have a busy evening ahead. Those of you who pray for me, please continue to do so. One thing that I have been reminded of this week is that I am focusing too much on what goes into my mouth and not enough on what goes on in my head. The last few days have been a constant battle against my parents' desires to feed me up...constant offers of food and alcohol...they mean well, but it's so difficult, and I'm tired.

Group therapy last night was emotional, but not painful, and very helpful. More on that later. S'long, waifs!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

why is stuff, well, difficult?

Not a good day emotionally, or food-wise for that matter. I woke up under a dark cloud and it hasn't really shifted yet. I am full, but I really want to spend the whole night snacking, which is not going to happen. :(

Breakfast: 1 egg, 1 slice bacon, 130g fried mushrooms, 1 slice toast, tea.
Lunch: FAIL! We were on the run so I got a lettuce, chicken and garlic mayo wrap. She asked me if I'd like it toasted and despite my better judgement I said yes. The heat in the oven was so great that the mayo actually curdled (yes, it became disgusting lumpy cheese) and rendered the wrap inedible. I then ate three bites of the husband unit's sandwich and had half a cup of vegetable soup. Completely unsatisfying.
Dinner: Steak fajitas with salsa and sour cream. I ate past the full-point because I was ravenous.
Post dinner snack: I've had a small Easter egg sitting around the house for weeks. I decided to eat it as a planned Easter treat. I now feel quite bloated and sick (which doesn't prevent me wanting to snack further). I am relieved it's out of the house though, which I realise isn't normal but hey. One day at a time.

This afternoon I realised a dream of mine and went to see the beloved play by Brian Friel Philadelphia Here I Come, along with possibly Ireland's stupidest audience. This is a work of heartbreak, loneliness and despair, and the audience laughed hysterically at the most poignant and agonising moments. There were parts where I was actually crying because of how sad it was, and the morons around me thought something funny was happening on stage. At one point I even noticed the confusion of the actors at the audience's response. It completely and utterly ruined the performance for me. That and the constant rattling of junk food papers - at the theatre! Hello! Have you people no class at all?!

As you can see, I am not in a sunny mood.



...the day was redeemed.

I had a lovely relaxed evening of chatting with a good friend. The food for the evening was as follows:

A handful of salted nuts
A large mixed leaves salad with tomatoes, red onion and peppers
Grilled marinated chicken breast
Garlic dough balls
Handful of strawberries and grapes


Friday, April 2, 2010

hey baby!

Today has been a funny one. The excess of food yesterday has definitely restimulated my appetite. :(

Breakfast: Chocolate banana oats with 1tsp of peanut butter.
Snack: 20g popcorn
Lunch: MEGAFAIL. I made chicken and vegetable soup and it was horrendous. I had about three mouthfuls before chucking the lot in the bin. I had a slice of cheese and a handful of grapes instead. I was too tired to cook anything else.

I walked for about 40 minutes today, and had an hour of Gymboree with my God-daughter. Man do they work those kids hard! I was sweating and exhausted at the end of it. The leader, Helen: she seriously has my respect. 60 minutes of non-stop running, singing, game-playing and endless enthusiasm with toddlers...and she does that all day long. Whoo. I was STARVING afterwards.

Dinner will be apparently chicken, but I'm not cooking so we'll see how it goes.

Emotionally I felt a bit wobbly today: I enjoyed every minute with the little one, but it can be a little lonely, and tiring. Kudos to her wonderful mum!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

mind grapes

By the time we sat down to eat tonight I was ready to eat my three nieces. The meal consisted of 1 small dinner roll with butter, a portabella mushroom topped with goat's cheese, sirloin steak with carrot and parsnip puree, mange tout, broccoli and sautéed potatoes, followed by bread and butter pudding and washed down with three glasses of Sauvignon Blanc. The food was phenomenal.

I am completely stuffed.

I don't know what to say about it other than I thoroughly enjoyed the evening and I don't think it has triggered a food bender.

Since getting home I have punched myself in the face with my handbag and rightly banged my knuckles off the living room door. I must be a bit pissed.

official weigh-day

Scale says, 253.5, which is a loss of three and a half pounds this week. I'm very happy with this.

Food so far has been really delicious.

Breakfast: 2 eggs, scrambled. Bowl of leftover fruit salad.
Lunch: Sesame bagel topped with pesto, a simple home-made salsa (chopped tomato, crushed garlic and a little olive oil), grilled peppers and light cheddar. This was fantastic.

Dinner will probably be soup, steak and something light and fruity for dessert (I'm very predictable).

The interview went fine. We'll see what happens!