Rye and Hastings

I started a blog about a recent trip to Rye and then forgot to post it.  So here’s the blog about Rye and I have added on the lovely day I had in Hastings with my sister Abi on Wednesday too.

RYE

Monday nights have become the new going out night in our house.  Inspired by a need to hit my 10,000 steps a day and wanting to amuse Harvey in the holidays we planned a late afternoon walk.  I work from home on a Monday so our excursions always begin late afternoon or early evening.

The rain ambushed our plans to walk round Bodiam castle so instead we went to Rye.  Nearly every building in the old part of town is worthy of a photo.

P1070146P1070145I love the effects of this one as it looks as if the tunnel is spinning.P1070147P1070148P1070149P1070150P1070151No danger of deep water at low tide.P1070154P1070153P1070155P1070156P1070157We popped in to a pub for a little drink.P1070158Cheers.P1070159P1070160P1070161This is the house opposite the pub – love the house name.P1070163The 15th Century building housing the Mermaid pub was a great place to have a drink and a relax.P1070162P1070164P1070167P1070169P1070170P1070171Beside the river we walked past Ferry Cottage.  Rye has such an interesting history.P1070176P1070174It also had a great playground which Harvey was very happy to use while I made my 10,000 step target by walking along the river bank.P1070177P1070179P1070180We nearly stayed in but I am really glad we went out.  I walked my 10,000 steps and we enjoyed pottering about the lovely then of Rye.

HASTINGS

On Wednesday I had a day off and Harvey and I went to Hastings.  This is such a surprising town.  Close to the centre of town was this lane which seemed as if it should be in a rural location.P1070295We walked in to the Old Town.P1070296P1070298Once upon a time I would have gone for coffee and cake.  Nowadays I rarely eat sweet things like cake as it is too hard to find vegan versions.  I have not become ultra healthy though as I have swapped the coffee and cake for a drink and a packet of crisps and nuts.P1070299Which is exactly what I had in the First In Last Out pub.  We enjoyed ourselves in this traditional pub.P1070300I met my sister Abi with my lovely nieces and nephew and we had fish and chips on the beach.  Well, I had chips.P1070303After lunch we went up the funicular to the East Hill where there is a large country park.P1070304Plus great views of the Old Town and the beach.P1070305P1070310P1070309P1070308P1070311We walked down from the Country Park and along some charming roads, back to the Old Town.P1070314P1070315

P1070319P1070318I spy with my little eye, some gorgeous cherry print deckchairs I might aspire to own.P1070324The new pier beckoned.  It is such a great space to walk along with fabulous views back to shore.P1070328P1070329P1070330We had a lovely day and left Hastings bathed in bright sunshine.  I can’t wait until we can have a lovely day in Hastings and don’t have to walk away.P1070331

 

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Five Days of Lyme Time

I have just returned from 5 mainly wonderful days in Lyme Regis.  The sadness of he visit was because my family gathered for the funeral of my lovely Aunty Hilary.  Her loss is felt keenly by us all as she was much loved.

It doesn’t seem appropriate to take photos during a wake, which in some ways is a shame because it is a day when all your nearest and dearest are together, in the same way they are at a wedding.  But no one takes photos and I didn’t even think about it until later.

After the funeral service and the wake, my cousins, sisters and our families congregated on the seafront in Lyme Regis, at the Harbour Inn.P1070261We occupied the left hand side of these tables and benches until 11:30 pm as it was such an incredibly warm evening.  The children played football on the beach and swam in the sea.  We all drank too much and chatted, laughed and cried.  It was a magical evening after a very emotional day.P1070260On Saturday we had a late start to the day.  I enjoyed a peaceful sit in this lovely sunny spot in my sister Lucy’s garden.  Sunshine, their dog, wanted a walk.P1070183So we went for a walk beside the river .  This was a reasonable length walk and as is so often the case in Lyme, it involved a very steep hill, on the way down to sea level and then again on the way back up!P1070184P1070190It was such a sunny and hot day it was lovely to be in the shade of the trees lining the river.P1070191P1070192P1070199P1070200Pretty Lyme Regis cottages near the river.P1070201P1070202I might like to have a  bridge from the path to my house.P1070203I got very hot and worn out walking back up to my sister’s house and was happy to see this unusual shaped thatched house as I know when I see this that I am nearly  there.P1070204It had been hard for me to eat properly on Friday so I really enjoyed the fresh fruit I had for breakfast and the pasta with lots of vegetables we had for lunch after our riverside walk.  We then headed down the hill again to the beach, where we met up with our cousins and their families.P1070219These two dear cousins, Miranda and Edwina, have been such superstars, the way they have supported their Mum and Dad all year.  They are amazing and despite everything they have been through recently, they organised the beach get together and supper in the evening for us all too.P1070215I am very lucky to have such lovely cousins.P1070217P1070211I wish every day could be a beach day.P1070210Especially if it was at Lyme Regis which is such a delightful place.  We all had supper together at the Harbour Inn; a reservation for 30 people and they coped very well.  We had a good dinner and a fairly early night.P1070207A shorter walk on Sunday, in the woods.P1070221P1070222I made a vegan shepherd’s pie for lunch which was good and we watched the French Lieutenant’s Woman in the afternoon; well my sister did but I fell asleep!  I took Harvey and Harry to Grandpa Ian’s for supper and we had a lovely drink in his beautiful garden, followed by a simple but delicious supper of pasta with a roasted garlic and tomato sauce.P1070242

My sister had to return to London for work but I stayed on in Lyme for a couple more days with harvey and my nephew Harry.  We had a really lovely time.

We went to Topsham on Monday where we cycled 13 miles along the River Eve to Exmouth and then on to Orcombe Red Rocks.  Grandpa Ian came with us which was great.  We. hoped Pashley bicycles from Dart Farm and set off.

The cycle trail takes you South along the River Exe to the estuary at Exemouth.  Most of the trail is relatively flat but there were a few hills which were ok on the way there but a challenge for me on the way back.  I need more practice

P1070241Luckily my trail companions were happy to wait for me when necessary.P1070223We passed a donkey sanctuary which was cute.  I haven’t seen donkeys for a long time and they trotted over to say hello.P1070228P1070227

We had lunch at one of the first places we came to along the seafront in Exemouth – The Waterfront.P1070229We had a great view of the sea.P1070231I had an open sandwich made with humous, avocado, tomato and balsamic vinegar which was delicious and a much needed cold soda water with lime.  It was good to have a rest from cycling.P1070232After lunch we decided to go along the seafront as far as we could, rather then head back to Darts Farm.P1070237We could go as far as Orcombe Red Rocks which was a charming and quiet little beach.  I have never been here before but would definitely return.  Probably not on a Ashley though because they are really heavy.P1070236P1070235I really enjoyed the cycling but was very tired and sore by the time we returned the bikes.P1070234

Today (Tuesday) was our last morning in Lyme Regis.  We were all up quite early and walked in to Lyme Regis for breakfast and a potter about.  Look how tall this fascia hedge is!P1070243We walked over the fields in to town, rather than down the road or beside the river.

I was tempted in to this cute little hat shop where I did treat myself to a beach hat and the milliner explained how she makes the hats.  We walked past some pretty buildings and in to the Town Mill Bakery for breakfast.  No trip to Lyme Regis is complete without one visit to the bakery for their fabulous toast and coffee.

My other must visit place is the Cobb so we wandered past the crowded beach.

The Cobb is one of my very favourite structures in the world.  I can never resist walking along it.

We spent a couple of very happy hours, sitting and relaxing in the sunshine, watching the boats sail by and just chilling.  It was perfect.P1070274These two were excellent company.P1070275P1070283There is so much history here on the Cobb.P1070284P1070285P1070286There was so much to sit and look at.P1070289P1070290P1070291All too soon it was time to head back to my sister’s, pack up and hit the road home.  Up that bl**dy hill again !!!P1070293Farewell lovely Lyme, this was an excellent visit and I look forward, all always, to returning.P1070292P1070294

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Walking from St.Leonard’s to Bexhill

Lara was at home this weekend (yippee) and we had hoped for a beach day on Saturday.  The weather was not fine enough to laze around on the beach so instead we headed to the coast anyway and walked from St.Leonard’s to Bexhill.  I had wanted to continue the walk we did on Monday all the way to Bexhill but there was not enough time then but today there was.

The weather was ominous but we set off anyway and hoped for the best.P1070111Regular readers may remember I was surprised to see some astro turf and a little picket fence beside the beach when I walked past here on Monday; all was revealed as being part of a cafe where you could sit on the bench or in a deckchair and enjoy the sea views.  Too soon for a coffee for us so we kept going.P1070110I really like this walk.P1070112So many charming beach huts.P1070113Looking back towards St.Leonard’s.P1070114P1070116This statue marks the spot of a cafe and this time we were ready for a coffee.P1070117Or an ice-cream for some.P1070119Onwards to Bexhill.

I love, love, love coastal scenery.

P1070125P1070126This walk really is delightful.  It’s a very easy walk with a path the entire way.P1070127It didn’t seem to take long before we were at Bexhill.  I could have walked much further as I was enjoying it so much.P1070132We beat the rain too so that was lucky.P1070134Harvey and I had enjoyed Rocksalt-On-Sea so much last Friday we took Lara there and had another good meal.  They were very helpful to me and instead of having the linguine in a creamy sauce, they made it for me vegan style and it was delicious.  I fancied a bowl of pasta after a good walk.P1070135We caught the train back to St.Leonard’s where it was raining quite hard so instead of going to the Hastings carnival we headed home, via the Kino in Hawkhurst where we watched the BFG.  It was brilliant and we all enjoyed it very much.P1070139P1070140Today we went to visit my Dad and Step-Mother and they took us out to a Chinese restaurant which was excellent.  I had vegetable spring rolls followed by aubergine in black bean sauce, with stir fried broccoli and pak choi in garlic and rice.  It was all delicious and the company was perfect.  Thanks Dad for a very enjoyable lunch.P1070142So another weekend comes to an end.  I did very well with the exercise but not so well with the eating, particularly the too many delicious snacks at Judy’s on Friday night, the chocolate in the cinema or the crisps and Prosecco at home with Lara on Saturday night.  But I enjoyed myself hugely which was important.  I will eat better this week and maintain the regular walking.

 

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An Evening Walk At Bulverhythe

I worked from home on Monday and Harvey amused himself.  He was then able to choose what we did for the rest of the day and he asked to take his BMX down to the coast.  So we set off, with the BMX and Milton for an evening stroll.  I chose to park at the Western end of St.Leonard’s and walk towards Bexhill.  It was a delightful walk and one we will definitely be repeating.

P1070026I wasn’t expecting to see a white picket fence and astro turf next to the beach huts !P1070030The path runs on from the end of the promenade at St.Leonard’s and there is a car park which is very convenient.P1070032P1070033I confess, I do have beach hut envy.  I would love one and one day I will treat myself but I think I need to wait until I know which town I will be living in as the beach hut needs to be easy to get to to make it more useable.P1070034P1070035P1070039P1070036Everything about this walk was lovely.  Obviously the company was great (boy and dog), the weather was perfect as it was sunny and warm but not too hot and there were so many interesting things to look at.  There were people also walking/cycling/running along the track but mainly it was peaceful and quiet so you could really enjoy the sounds of the sea.P1070041P1070048P1070050Harvey loved the route and cycled many miles as he went backwards and forwards, up and down the gentle hills and along the flat.  This is looking towards Bexhill.P1070052If I close my eyes and breathe deep I can imagine I am back there, with my boy, with the sun and the sound of the waves.P1070053I definitely did not expect the profusion of wildflowers so they were an added bonus.  This is the view looking towards St.Leonard’s.P1070058P1070061P1070063P1070068P1070072After the walk we picked up some fish and chips (no fish for me obviously) and headed to Rebecca’s.  She had just made a fabulous dal which she gave me a bowlful of and which I must try and recreate.  We then sat in her pretty garden with its views over Hastings (and the ‘haunted house’ next door) and chatted away while the sun went down.  A lovely ending to a wonderful evening.P1070078

I have done well with the walking over the last week and actually walked 79,000 steps which exceeds the target 10,000 a day so I was happy with that.  I ate reasonably well too (apart from the chips) yesterday  and today I fasted.  I had water with the juice of 3 limes and 45ml of maple syrup.  I mix the lime juice and maple syrup together and take it to work.  I have a large glass in the office and I add 1 tbsp of the lime and syrup mixture to every 500ml of water.  I drank between 3 and 4 litres of water today.  I actually find it easier to eat nothing rather than a little so that is what I am going to try and do twice a week.  If I can do 3 days in a row (which I have done twice now), then I can do 1 day twice a week.

On the 5:2 diet you can have 500 calories on your fast days.  The juice of 3 limes and 45 ml maple syrup is 60 + 156 = 216 so I am well within the allowance.  I took Milton for a walk in the woods over the road when I came home as I had no time to go for a walk at lunch time so I have walked 10,682 steps so far today.  So all is going rather well at the moment with exercise and eating.  Room for improvement on the eating but a huge improvement on recent weeks.

 

 

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Sunny Hastings Evening

Harvey and I had a lazyish day at home on Saturday which was very pleasant.  It was still so warm and sunny in the late afternoon I suggested we headed for the coast so we could go for a walk along the seafront in Hastings, have supper and watch the sunset.  That is what we did.  We parked near the pier as by good fortune, street parking restrictions are lifted at 6pm which was exactly when we got there.P1060950I walked and Harvey cycled along to the far end of Hastings, Rock-A-Nore.  The beach had fewer people on it than I expected.P1060951These two were having fun on their paddle boards; they paddled out and then raced back in on the waves.  I really fancy trying that and sea kayaking.P1060953P1060952It was a very pleasant stroll and cycle.

The seafront near the boating lake and mini golf was full of people enjoying themselves and making the most of this fantastic weather we are having.

I meandered about, sometimes on the beach and sometimes on the promenade.P1060966As we approached Rock-A-Nore we came to the business end of the beach, where the fishing shacks are which sell fresh fish, the beach with the boats on it and the fishing net huts.P1060973Hastings really is a photographers dream.  I must dust off the large camera and come back as it is so picturesque.P1060969P1060975P1060981This is the coastline beyond Rock-A-Nore.P1060979The end of the road for us so we about turned in the direction of the pier for a cold drink.P1060983I love the lines of the pier and how they reflect in the wet sand.P1060986P1060990It was such a beautiful evening.P1060988A cold beer drink and crisps and peanuts were just the thing.  The only negative aspect of the evening was the ghastly rap style music being blasted out by a ‘DJ’ on the pier.  It seemed an unusual choice of music for a crowd of mainly families or middle aged people. P1060992Harvey chose to eat pizza which meant we had to walk back towards the Old Town to find a restaurant which sold pizzas and was on the sea front and had a table for us.  We ate in Bella Napoli at Pelham Crescent.   It was very good value; we nibbled on bread with Balsamic and olives, I had a pizza and Harvey a Calzone plus a glass of wine came to £24 which I think is really good.  The portions were so large we had to take half of it home so that’s lunch sorted!P1060995

We had a lovely evening in Hastings and thanks to all the walking, my step count for the day was over 17,000 which is really good.  Not enough to justify the pizza and bread though😦

Today was a gardening day.  I could always go to the beach but I have a large garden and it needed attention today so I stayed at home.P1070001P1070003P1070002P1060999Much of the garden looks really good, thanks to the weekly endeavours of my gardener, Adrian but certain bits, like the pots and veggie garden are all mine.P1060998I worked on the pots on the patio which were a mess and planted up a flower bed next to the veggie patch.  I haven’t been so inspired to grow as many veggies as usual as I was expecting to have moved.  Rather than look at an empty bed, I bought some flowers and planted them out.P1060997I only have tomatoes and squash in the greenhouse this year and they are doing really well.  We have already eaten some tomatoes which is the earliest I have ever had any.P1070005There are so many trusses on each plant.P1070006

P1070007I enjoyed being outside, gardening and was inspired by all the plants in the garden to make a juice for breakfast.  I picked some rainbow chard and juiced it with half a pineapple, an orange, a kiwi and red pepper and then blended it with half an avocado.P1070008I was aiming for a green juice but it was more brown than green.   It tasted good though.P1070009For supper I picked lots of peas and spent a pleasant time, sitting in the garden, shucking them.P1070010P1070011I also picked all the raspberries I could find and some rhubarb and made a crumble.  I haven’t made a ‘proper’ pudding for ages and thought it was about time I did.P1070013It was cooler today than yesterday with a pleasant breeze and in the afternoon we enjoyed a walk over the road in the woods.P1070017It is so lush and green in the woods at the moment.P1070018Look how high the ferns are?  They are huge, almost tropical.P1070019We ate supper in the garden.P1070014As we were having a pudding we had a light supper; stir fried vegetables (peas and chard from the garden) with smoked tofu with sesame seeds and almonds.P1070021The crumble was delicious.  I had about 5 cups of fruit which I placed in an ovenproof dish I had coated lightly with coconut oil.  I added 3 tbsp brown sugar.  I made a topping by blitzing together 1 cup of oats, half a cup of wholewheat flour, half a cup of pecan nuts, 1/4 cup of brown sugar, a pinch of salt and 4 tbsp vegan spread.  Baked in the oven at 180 degrees for 45 minutes.  Served with vegan custard.  We both really enjoyed it and have another portion to look forward to tomorrow.P1070023

 

 

 

 

 

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Discovering Bexhill

While I continue to be drawn down to the South coast, and regularly visit Hastings and St.Leonards, I have recently been reminded of how lovely Bexhill is.  I travelled home from a book reading with Gilli who said how charming Bexhill is and how it might be a good place to consider living.  So I went to take a look.  I think she may be on to something.  Bexhill seems charming, quaint and peaceful, particularly when compared to the craziness of Hastings and the faded grandeur of St.Leonards.

P1060837P1060838P1060839For the first visit, I took Harvey and we went with Lucy who by coincidence had been to Bexhill that week and was also pleasantly surprised by how lovely it was.  We strolled around the De La Warr Pavilion and then along the promenade.  Unlike Hastings and St.Leonards, where there is a road between the seafront houses and the promenade and beach, there are many houses in Bexhill with gardens directly on the promenade.  I could live in one of these!P1060840P1060841P1060842We also walked up to the Old Town which is like a rural village.  Very charming but not lively enough for what I am looking for so we headed back to the front.P1060844P1060847That was the first visit of many I have made since.  The following weekend I went to St.Leonard’s and was pleased to discover a mainly vegan cafe had opened on Norman Road.  They provide cow’s milk for coffee but the rest of their produce is vegan.  I had a fabulous chocolate cake with my coffee.  This is newly opened and I wish them well with their venture.

P1060855I strolled up Kings Road and bought some veggies in this shop and then pottered about the street market as by chance, it was the St.Leonard’s festival weekend.P1060859P1060860P1060861As usual I was drawn to the sea front.  The planting in St.Leonard’s is pretty so I enjoyed a walk along the front and then hopped over to Bexhill.P1060862

P1060864This time I walked away from the centre of Bexhill and headed West towards Eastbourne.  This is such a pretty promenade.P1060868P1060869Handy to know the rules about dogs on the beach.P1060870It seems so peaceful and quiet here but not isolated or lonely.

I sat and relaxed for ages, enjoying the sunshine and the soothing sounds of the waves on the beach.P1060880P1060881P1060882I would love a beach chalet on the beach!P1060884

P1060887After a long and lazy afternoon I headed home, all the happier for another jaunt to Bexhill.P1060892P1060893

So the following weekend I came back with Harvey and Milton.  Harvey BMXd and I walked with Milton.  Milton could not be persuaded in to the sea which is a shame as although it was overcast it was very warm.P1060899We moved along the coast to Hastings to see what Pirate’s Day was all about.P1060903

Wow!  So many people – men, women and children – dress up as pirates and the Old Town and promenade were heaving with people.P1060904

I think this chap, with the bird on his shoulder and his peg leg really was a pirate.P1060905P1060907I wouldn’t argue with this lot either.P1060908When the sun came out is was very hot; much too hot for Milton so we took him home.  Next year we will leave Milton at home and will hopefully be living in Hastings because I would like to experience Pirate’s Day properly.

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This week I headed North rather then South, to Edinburgh.  I always stay in the Apex hotel on Grassmarket if I can and this time I was given a large room with 2 double beds.  What a waste being in there on my own.  I wished I had Lara and Harvey with me as we would have enjoyed a night together.P1060915P1060917

The last time I was here it was very cold and there were no chairs and tables on the street.P1060918I sat outside one of the restaurants and enjoyed a pizza and glass of wine with a colleague from the office.P1060920

This was the view I had of the castle from my hotel the next morning.P1060922I wish I had time to explore Edinburgh; the little I see of it every time I come is extremely appealing and I would love to see more of it.P1060924

Instead I enjoyed the 15 minute walk to the office in the sunshine.P1060925

Harvey broke up from school and began his summer holidays this Friday at midday.  So I took a day off, picked him up from school and took him to the pub.  Well, I hadn’t seen him since Sunday and we had a lot of catching up to do.  This pub was in Bexhill.P1060929

We did some shopping as Harvey needed swimming trunks and then went to Rocksalt-On-Sea (at 29 Marina, Bexhill)  for lunch which was very good.  I had a salad without the chorizo or goat’s cheese it was meant to come with and some chips.P1060930

With a very decent Sauvignon Blanc.P1060931

We then went to do something I have been wanting to do for several weeks – swim in the sea.  This was the first time I have swum in the sea all year and i really enjoyed it.  We both did.P1060937I also enjoyed relaxing and snoozing on the beach afterwards.  Despite the very warm day, there were only a few others on the beach at Bexhill as I think most people head to Hastings beach but I prefer the peace and quiet of Bexhill.P1060945P1060946

So there we are.  Bexhill rediscovered and somewhere I will keep returning to because we really like it.

 

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Four Days, Three Concerts

I have had a lot of fun in the last 4 days which is good for the soul but not necessarily for the improved health or weight loss I am aiming for

Wednesday was amazing.  I went to Wembley with 2 of my sisters and nephew Harry to see Coldplay.IMG_3173 IMG_3184 IMG_3190 I met Lucy and Abi in Zizzi at Wembley for a pizza and rather a lot of wine first !!  They do have a vegan cheese but unfortunately they also added goat’s cheese.  Having waited 2 hours for it, I picked off the cheese bits but it was disappointing.  Luckily the manager discounted our bill by all our main meals so it was quite good value in the end.IMG_3193 (1)Time to go in to the stadium.  So exciting !!!!

P1060770P1060774P1060777We had unreserved or pitch seats and we chose to sit.P1060776 The effects were amazing; at one point the entire stadium was filled with paper cut in to the shape of little birds.P1060779 Coldplay played on the main stage, an extended stage in to the centre of the stadium and a small stage at the end .P1060781 They are amazing to see live as they play all their hits and they also sang a tribute to David Bowie.P1060783 We were given wristbands which lit up and changed colour; this was very effective when 80,000 people were wearing them and waving them around.P1060787 P1060788 P1060790 And we had giant balloons to play with.P1060791

Thank you for coming they said.  Well thank you for playing – it was magical and amazing and fantastic.P1060792

The critics agreed.

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I had lovely supper at Jules’ on Thursday with some of the local lovelies and on Friday I went to Bedgebury, a forest near us, to see Tom Jones.

It did rain for a while but then the sun came out.

IMG_3243 Tom was great; he is such a good singer and his band were excellent.IMG_3248 Thank you Marion and Colin for the ticket and it was lovely to see you both, Clare and Lesley.IMG_3252

Last night we were at Bedgebury again to see the Kaiser Chiefs.  We had a very enjoyable evening and the Kaiser Chiefs were also good.

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Sally stayed with us last night and it was lovely to have some extra time with her.  We had a good start to the day this morning; a smoothie made with apricots, strawberries and bananas.P1060797We had coffee at Hartley Dyke and then it was time to say good-bye.  Lara and Harvey took their Dad out for lunch and I took mine.P1060799

Well, my Dad took me actually.  We went to a local Chinese restaurant in Sutton and I had a delicious meal of vegetable spring rolls, seaweed, sizzling tofu in black bean sauce, rice with vegetables and broccoli cooked with garlic.P1060802 I think 4 late nights took their toll.  I forgot to take my Dad these lovely flowers I bought him which I was so annoyed with myself about.  Sorry Daddy, but here is the promised photo of them xx

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Tomorrow I fast and get back on my thyroid healing protocol.

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A Weekend Of Healthy Eating

I have had a very relaxing weekend which was much needed.  I had nothing in my diary ALL weekend which is unheard of but I have actually enjoyed it so much I want to do it again.  I did very well with my eating this weekend too.

I wasn’t very hungry on Saturday morning so I just had an apple for breakfast with green tea.
P1060724 Lunch was a very simple stir fry, with the vegetables “fried” in water rather than oil.  I “fried” mustard seeds and cumin seeds in water and then added chopped onion and chilli, before adding cauliflower and sugar snap peas.  When it was ready I added cooked brown rice.P1060725 Served with fresh coriander made for an enjoyable meal.  It was less tasty than if I had used oil but so much healthier.  I didn’t add any salt as I have high blood pressure and am trying to bring it down without medication and neither did I add soy sauce as the thyroid protocol I am following asks you to avoid soya products.P1060726 P1060727 I snacked on some Goji berries and apricots in the afternoon.P1060728 For dinner I made High F-W’s aubergine and green bean curry from his Veg Everyday cookbook.  I have previously blogged the recipe for it.  It is delicious and well worth making, especially as it’s easy and tasty.P1060730 P1060731 P1060732While I was clearing up after supper I put a cup of buckwheat in water to soak overnight.

P1060723In the morning I rinsed it and put it in the blender.
P1060733 With some berries.P1060734 And coconut milk.  I also added a spoonful of coconut jam as it was a bit tart but I liked the thick slightly grainy texture and this was a very filling smoothie.P1060735 I love this green tea which has puffed brown rice in – such a delicate and wonderful flavour.P1060737 P1060738For lunch I made some sweet potato fries. You can never have too many sweet potato fries, right?  Well wrong actually.  When you make too many they sit in steam and don’t crisp up so I had a brilliant idea;  I added some red kidney beans and covered them in vegan cheese and popped them back in the oven for 10 minutes.
P1060739 Ta daaa!!!!  Cheezy sweet potato fries and they were amazing.P1060740 Served with roasted red pepper, courgettes and carrots with sauerkraut.P1060741 The cheesy fries and beans was the best part.P1060742 For dinner I made a really good shepherd’s pie.  Probably the best ever.  I used a mixture of lentils and aduki beans which I cooked with onions, garlic, mushrooms and carrots for the base.  I used the beans and lentils with the water they come in.P1060743 For seasoning I used Worcester sauce, liquid aminos and a sprinkling of bouillon powder.  When it was cooked, I stirred in some cornflour mixed with a little water to make a thick sauce as that is how I like it.P1060744 Remember how much I love my green leaves?  Well I added them to the middle of this pie filling.  I put a layer of lentil and bean mixture over the base, added a packet of fresh spinach and then the rest of the filling on top.  Covered it in mashed potato and popped it in to the oven.P1060745 Served with frozen peas.  Always has to be frozen peas with shepherd’s pie and then some Branston pickle on the side.  It was delicious.P1060746 Three empty plates (mine, Matt’s and Harvey’s) were testament to how good it was and I look forward to the leftovers tomorrow.  Better still is knowing how much great nutrition is in this dinner.P1060747

Yesterday was a bit too lazy on the exercise front but today we went on a decent length walk around Hemstead so I am over my 10,000 steps.  I hope you had a good weekend too.

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Food Diary 10th May 2016

All she ate and drank today:

A glass of water with thyroid supplementsP1060707

Orange and pink grapefruit juice with protein powder.  I shared the juice with Harvey.

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Half a watermelon.

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A mug of green tea with Alison.P1060714

A stir “fry” using water instead of oil, made with onions, tender stem broccoli, cauliflower, brown rice and kidney beans and seasoned with chili, ginger and Maya’s spices, with a serving of sauerkraut and garnished with fresh coriander.

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750ml glass of water with a Berocca and vitamin B12 supplement.

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Afternoon snack; dried plums, pistachios and apple.

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A late afternoon dog walk with Harvey and Lucy at Hemstead Forest.P1060716

An apple snack.

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Half the frozen bananas were used to made banana nice cream made with raspberries, almond butter and coconut water.  I shared this quantity with Harvey.

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So yummy

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The other half of the bananas were blended with coconut water and cocoa powder.P1060720

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Battling with Hypothyroidism

I was recently reminded that I had previously been diagnosed as being hypothyroid i.e. my thyroid is not functioning correctly and is under producing thyroid hormone or it could be producing enough but I am not able to utilise it sufficiently.  I went to the Doctors because of the following symptoms: difficulty losing weight, poor memory, a low and decreasing pulse rate and just feeling tired a lot of the time.  A blood test confirmed I was hypothyroid and I began taking thyroid hormone tablets – well, when I remembered I did!  I hadn’t taken the thyroid tablets for a long time and I am feeling better after just 3 months worth of taking the tablets regularly.

I know, from studying nutrition, that what you eat can make the condition better or worse so I went off in search of a decent book.  As with all things in nutrition, there are conflicting opinions about how best to help you so I bought a book I had been recommended and I am going to stick with it.

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I also have quite a few symptoms of being insulin resistant such as : general fatigue, constant hunger, craving sweets, frequent urination and difficulty losing weight.  So I am starting the the section in the book about trying to combat insulin resistance.  The protocol Dr. Kharrazian recommends is to do a 3 – 5 day fast of only consuming green tea, plus a lot of water mixed with lemon or lime pulp and maple syrup.  You then introduce specific types of food.

This is day 2 of the fast and I do feel very tired but I suspect that is in part having given up tea and coffee.  Apart from being tired I feel alright and this has been easier to stick to than I expected.

I use limes rather than lemons but you could use either.P1060684

I peeled the limes and put them in the blender with enough water and maple syrup to make a base.P1060685

I leave the base in a jug and every time my glass is empty I add some base and top it up with water.  Similar to how you would make a cordial or squash.

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I worked from home today so it was easy to keep the water and base cold in the fridge and top up regularly.P1060689

The quantities are not specific except for asking you to drink 2 gallons a day which I think is 7 litres (it’s an American book so I have assumed USA gallon).  You add enough maple syrup to take the bitterness away, rather than making a very sweet drink.   I haven’t managed that much though, I have had 4 litres of water with 3 limes and about 150 ml of maple syrup plus 2 mugs of green tea.

I really like the taste of it so it is very easy to drink.  You have to sip throughout the day and make sure you sip some every 10 – 15 minutes.  I did think it would be improved by a good slug of gin and I might even serve this as a cocktail the next time I have friends round.P1060690

The 3 – 5 day fast is important so you take a break from food to let your digestive tract have time to start recovering.  People with insulin resistance often have multiple food insensitivities and intolerances,  which is another symptom I have actually.

The lime juice alkalinises the blood and green tea helps produce the hormone lipase which helps burn body fat.  The book asks for Grade B maple syrup as that is sweeter so you need less but I couldn’t find any.

It was sunny and warm today so when Harvey came home from school we went for a walk  in the woods over the road from the house.  We are so lucky to have this on our doorstop.

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Shame my English rural scene was photo bombed !

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I love walking through these woods.

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There are several ponds and ditches in the woods which Milton usually drinks from as we go round but he wouldn’t drink it today and it was a very orange/brown colour.  I wonder what happened to that.

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I love this huge oak tree we pass on the way home.P1060704

I will repeat the lime/maple syrup/water drink tomorrow but I am out at the theatre in the evening and meeting a girlfriend first for supper so I will be breaking the fast a bit early.  But I will try and break it with foods on the permitted list for the next 2 weeks.

 

 

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