If You Aren’t Flexible, You’ll Break

If you aren’t flexible, you’ll break.

That’s what my mother said when I called to explain the changes in our Christmas plans.

We’ve been planning for months on having Christmas at our new house with some of both or our extended families. There would be 11 people at our house for dinner and a nice time was to be had. We’d gotten all of the food, determined the best configuration of the dining room to seat 11 people, planned the schedule to spend a little time with my relatives, a little time with Brad’s and some time with all of us together. Then it all changed.

In the same day, I had two phone calls that led to my conversation with my mom about being flexible. One of my relatives dropped out. Then it was determined that Brad’s mom wouldn’t be able to make the drive up to our house since she’s recovering from surgery. So, we changed our plans. My mom and her husband came over on Christmas Eve, spent the night and had Christmas morning with them. Then we packed up all of the food that we got, took it down to Brad’s parents’ house and I made Christmas dinner for 8 people. I’m pretty proud of the meal I made.

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Turkey & Black Bean Chili (stove top or slow cooker)

A few years ago if you asked me if I liked chili, I would have wrinkled my nose at you and said, “Eww, no!”

As a kid I hated chili! Now, as an adult, I can articulate that the reason I didn’t like chili was the texture of canned tomatoes made me gag, kidney beans were are gross and onions can ruin just about anything.

After Brad mentioned wanting chili several times, I really thought about it and went browsing around the internet for a recipe for chili that I could make for him and that I would actually like. Since there was ground turkey in the fridge and black beans in the pantry, that’s were my search started. I couldn’t find just one recipe that I wanted to try, but I liked elements of a few of them so I did my own.

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Pans Stay in the Kitchen

Many people make food-related New Year’s resolutions, whether it’s simply to eat healthier or to lose weight, food is one of the top resolution subjects. Today I’m sharing a tip that may help with those by making a change in how you eat meals, not what you eat (although what you choose to eat is also very important).

If you come to dinner at my house, it’s likely that you’ll dish up your food in my kitchen before heading to the dining room. We’ll only occasionally serve at the table when we have company, but we never serve from the table when it’s just the two of us.

Why do the pans, pots, holders of food stay in the kitchen? Partially out of laziness efficiency and partially out of health consciousness.

Portion Control

When you serve up your plate the first time, you pick a portion and typically it’s the portion you believe you should eat and not smaller. When the pan or serving dish is right there in front of you, it’s nearly unconscious to dish out more. Have you ever sat at a table with a group of friends or family and there’s a tray of vegetables, plate of cheese of batch of cookies near you? Chances are you’ll grab one… or four while socializing. If those items aren’t in arm’s reach, it becomes a conscious choice to eat something and whether you still choose to eat it, it’s better to be conscious.

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Diabetes Doesn’t Give Holidays Off

Next week marks my 3rd year of using OmniPod to manage my type 1 diabetes. This isn’t really relevant to today’s story, but I wanted to point it out.

It’s sometimes hard to believe how much time has gone by since I was diagnosed with diabetes and since I started using an insulin pump. It’s an all-day, everyday condition that gives no time off for vacations, holidays or good behavior. In fact, I think that mine punishes me on vacation and during holidays!

I know it’s been a few weeks, but let me tell you about my very unthankful and unpleasant start to Thanksgiving. The evening before Thanksgiving Brad and I went down to his family’s house. We usually help prepare and cook the meal. My blood sugar was a little high, but I assumed it was from having lunch out with my coworkers. I took corrections and set temp basals, but got kind of wrapped up in the prep for the big dinner that I wasn’t as vigilant as I should have been.

I was over 200 before bed, so I corrected and set an alarm. I woke up to my alarm and was still high so I corrected again and set another alarm because no one really needs to sleep, right? I have no recollection of testing a second time but my PDM shows another reading and correction, it was lower but still too high. When I woke up the next morning and checked my Dexcom I almost had a heart attack, it read over 300. I immediate stuck my finger and sure enough, I was 302.

Its hard to be thankful when you start the day with a device failure, pod change and moderate ketones. #walkwithd

A photo posted by Rachel K (@probablyrachel) on

Something was clearly wrong so I took a manual injection from my brand new vial of insulin and started the pod change process, right there in my in-laws’ guest bed while Brad was just waking up. The old pod was starting day 3 and was the last of my previous vial of insulin, that coupled with the mystery food and my dysfunctional immune system created the perfect diabetes storm to threaten to ruin my Thanksgiving. Continue reading

Recipe: Easy Roasted Tomatoes

I love tomatoes… which is weird because I don’t like tomato sauces.

A couple of weeks ago, Brad and I were grilling balsamic pork chops for dinner and I had some Campari tomatoes that needed to be eaten. Inspired by the tomato that accompanies a plate of eggs on the cruise ship, I started slicing the tomatoes in half and developed this recipe:

Easy Roasted Tomatoes

Ingredients:

– small tomatoes such as Campari or plum, but larger probably work too

– dressing – I used Italian dressing

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