This guest blog post is written by Debby Gans as part of a series on her journey towards clean eating. Read Week 1 HERE.
Last week I left the gate full speed ahead ready to conquer all of my sugar and cupcake cravings long term. However, I quickly realized eating clean is just like many other aspects of life. It has peaks and valleys, steep drops, and sometimes it is difficult to catch your breath. This is especially true when all in one week is Passover, your mom’s birthday, your best friends birthday, your clean-eating guru’s birthday and your birthday.
The good news is that although I stumbled, it wasn’t nearly as catastrophic as it would have been a few weeks ago back in my cupcake adoring days!
I made it through all of those celebrations with only two cupcakes! While this might not seem like a major accomplishment to our regular clean eaters, for me and my long-term love affair with cupcakes, this is a pretty big deal.
So now that I’ve come clean about my transgressions, here is what went well. On Monday night, I attempted to make barbecued wild Key West shrimp with Old Bay seasoning. All was going well until I discovered that the propane tank on our grill was empty. Fortunately, I spent the last few summers as a Camp photographer in the northeast at Camp Weequahic. After watching hundreds of kids cooking over a fire, I decided to cook the shrimp on our backyard fire pit. The results were surprisingly delicious! Just like the kids at camp, I wrapped the seasoned shrimp in aluminum foil and stuck it directly in the fire. After a few minutes, they looked like this:
I served the shrimp with roasted cauliflower that my best friend grew in her garden. Here’s how easy the preparation was… I sprayed some oil olive over the chopped cauliflower and then added my new favorite seasoning, Falksalt. It is made of natural sea salt and wild garlic. I then spread the cauliflower on a cookie sheet and cooked it in the oven at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. I served the roasted cauliflower with the shrimp.
Here’s something I discovered about myself this week: if I am going to do this, it can’t be too time consuming. In addition to serving as Ivy’s guest blogger, I wear a few other hats. First and foremost, I am a mom to two busy kids, both of whom you may remember reading about. My oldest, Benji, has taught me to reach well beyond my comfort level in other ways. You can read about our journey on: BenjiTalks.com / On Instagram /Or watch his Tedx talk HERE.
My daughter Carly keeps me extra busy with her love of dance, basketball, fashion and fun! She blogged for Ivy a few weeks ago about eating cleaner too. You can read Carly’s clean eating blog HERE!
Other hats I wear include being a photographer for The Clean Cuisine Cookbook, running my business ( Debby Gans Photography), Instagram or Facebook , and unofficial adviser/advocate for others families who have a child with an ASD diagnosis, wife, sister, daughter, friend and CEO of the Gans family. As you can see, I definitely cannot spend as much time in the kitchen as I was trained to do in college …more about that some other time.
My realization of the week is if I am going to succeed at eating cleaner, I need to buy things that are pre-cut. A few examples of what I acquired this week are found below:
-ready to mix salads
-Butternut squash zigzags
-Dr. Praeger’s Kale Veggie Burgers
After eating one cupcake, I was kind of upset with myself. Last night, we had a few friends over and I couldn’t resist this one!
Even though it tasted a bit more sugary than I remembered, it is my birthday today and it didn’t seem like the time to skip the cupcake. Then, my dear friend Allison gave me a package and insisted I open it then and there, among the cupcakes. There were several fun things in the bag, but one of the items spoke to me. It is a fun book called Fight On by M.H. Clark (book can be found at Z Gallerie or Amazon, by the way.)
Here’s a photo of my favorite page:
“You are not required to change all at once. You are required to be brave enough to make small changes one day at a time.”
So for today, the beginning of my 46thtrip around the sun, I am happy that I have begun to make real changes. This week was far more challenging than last. Fortunately, I have circled the sun enough times to know that life is full peaks and valleys. We will see what this week brings. Until then, thanks for reading!