Yarn Bombing

What a lovely sunny day we had today.  I was able to enjoy a lot of the sunshine by walking in it to St.Leonard’s and back, via the pier to see the yarn bombing.

I made a juice for breakfast but have managed to delete the photo!  You’ll have to trust me on that one.  Lucy came over and after a coffee, we walked, with Harvey, down to the pier.P1080456It was perfect walking weather; sunny and warm but not too hot.  I had heard about the yarn bombing on the pier and wanted to see it for myself.P1080458It was fantastic.  So many local groups, such as primary schools and the scouts, had made pictures, installations or models, such as this charming mermaid. They were then displayed all over the pier.P1080464People are so imaginative and creative.

P1080465This installation was massive.P1080466The beach was surprisingly deserted although it did fill up a lot by late afternoon when it was warm enough to lie outside.P1080467Just a few paddle boarders earlier on though as it was too calm for the windsurfers and surfers.P1080468I think this merry band of pirates was one of my favourite installations.P1080471We had lunch in the Love Cafe on Norman Road.  I had the falafels with salad, avocado and pitta bread.  The bread and falafels were lovely but the salad was drowned in a very strong vinaigrette which was a shame.  I will go to the Love Cafe again as I like it in there and the soy milk latte was excellent.  But I will ask for the dressing on the side next time.P1080472The reason for walking to St.Leonard’s was to go to the excellent Kino-teatr to see Moonlight.  Rebecca met us in there and had saved us good seats in the arm chairs and sofa near the front.  Moonlight is not an easy or pleasant watch and I am surprised it won the Oscar for Best Film.  I am glad I went but would not see it again.

Dinner was a very quick, easy and uninspiring salad with humous, sweetcorn and potatoes.  With a glass of wine plus I had some peanuts before hand.P1080474My eating was ok today and the walking very good; I walked over 14,000 steps and hardly sat down all day so a good active day.  With lovely friends and great scenery.  Oh I do like to be beside the seaside.

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Out and About in Kent, Sussex and London

I have seen some very dear friends and family this week, seen some amazing sights, eaten some wonderful food and been very good at exercising.  So a good week in many ways.

In 1749, during a severe gale, the Amsterdam was shipwrecked at Bulverhythe (between St.Leonards and Bexhill) and when the tides are very low, you can see the remains of it.  The tides were very low this week so on Thursday morning, we went down to the beach at 7 am to have a look.

P1080398It was a beautiful morning and I am so pleased we made the effort to go down to the beach as it was tempting to stay in bed.P1080401The low tide is usually 1-2 metres but on this day it was 0.35 so the water was very far out, which gave us plenty of time to walk around the exposed ribs of the remains of the ship.P1080407P1080418Lots of interesting smells for Milton.P1080406P1080404If you want to find the wreck, it’s near the railway crossing at Bulverhtythe.P1080400P1080416P1080417We all enjoyed our early morning trip to the beach.P1080409P1080410P1080412On Thursday evening Jane and Vicky came to visit me.  I didn’t take any photos but be assured I had a really lovely evening.  We walked over to the Old Town and had dinner in The Stag which has a Balinese themed evening on Thursdays.  I had a delicious vegan dish of stir fried vegetables with rice and a side of fried tofu with beansprouts.  It was so lovely to see them both and I look forward to them visiting again.

Last night I met Laura and Jeremy, who I was at University with, so we could celebrate Laura’s birthday.  We had a table booked at The Oxo Brasserie.  It was fun walking along the Southbank, watching the skateboarders and then the cyclists and of course, enjoying the view of London across the Thames.

Photo credit to Jeremy for this one, taken while he waited for us to get there.IMG_4743The Brasserie had a vegetarian menu with vegan options clearly marked so choosing dinner was easy.  Choosing the cocktails was harder because any of them would have been enjoyable.P1080427I had the falafel and pomegranate salad to start with which was delicious.P1080428My main was stuffed mushrooms with a side of broccoli and chips.  Enhanced it must be said by a very decent Sancerre.P1080430For dessert I had a banana cake with a ginger and pear sorbet.  It was a delicious meal in a splendid setting with dear friends.P1080431Harvey and I went to Canterbury today.  It is such a pretty little City, filled with charming independent shops and enticing cafes.  We went in this one.  It was great.P1080439This is a vegetarian cafe that serves mainly vegan food.  We both had ‘special boxes’ and both really enjoyed everything we had; the salads in particular were delicious.  Lots of raw and fermented foods so very nutritious.  I had the white bean burger and mixed salads with seeds, sauerkraut and vegan mayo.  It was really very good indeed.IMG_4745We were sitting near the cake counter so we naturally had to try a cake too.P1080434The cupcakes were moist and with the right proportion of icing to cake;  we each had half a chocolate and half a vanilla.  Mine were enjoyed with a good strong coffee.  I highly recommend this little cafe.P1080436Our reason for being in Canterbury was to go and see the Cathedral.P1080440We had been given a free family ticket and I was really looking forward to going.  Harvey less so but he was interested once we got inside.P1080441The scale of the place is jaw dropping and the quality of the craftsmanship is hard to believe.P1080442There is a lot of restoration work underway so we couldn’t see everything but we loved what we did see.P1080443Beautiful pulpit.P1080444One of the 4 sides of the Cloisters.P1080446P1080447P1080451P1080452We have a light as large and ornate as this one in our modest sized sitting room.  I noticed this one because everyone who visits my house comments on it.  I will change it eventually as it is too big and fussy for me but it would go well in this Cathedral.IMG_4747We were lucky enough to be there while the choir were practising.  The sound was so beautiful it sent shivers down my spine.  IMG_4748I really like choral music and in such a splendid setting it was a sound to behold.  I could have stood there for hours.P1080453When we left the cathedral we pottered around the shops for a while which was lovely, ambling along in the Spring sunshine.  Canterbury is a charming City and one we will visit again.

IMG_4753We then spent a couple of very happy hours at my cousin Katie’s house in nearby Blean, having tea with her and her husband Twig.  Our lovely day out ended on our front patio, where we enjoyed a drink as the sun set.IMG_4755I have been really good at walking this week and have an average step count of 13,197 steps each day which I am very pleased about.  Hopefully that will help work off some of the lovely food I have had this week.

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This Is London

I was saddened and angered by the attack on Westminster on Wednesday but I will not let such things stop me enjoying the greatest city in the world or interfere with my life.  It was Mother’s Day today and I had booked tickets for the three of us to go to the Royal Academy of Art and see the exhibition of American art after the fall i.e. the 1930’s followed by lunch nearby.  We stuck to our plan and had a really wonderful day.

Harvey and I caught the train up to Victoria where Lara met us.  We then planned to walk past Buckingham Palace and through Green Park to the Academy.  Our way was blocked by huge crowds because it was Changing Of The Guards so we stood to watch.  We had a great view from the palace end of St James’ Park which looked really pretty.P1080356I don’t think my children have actually seen this before but it’s a fantastic sight and we somehow managed to be standing at the front and had a perfect view.  P1080358The red uniforms, white palace and blue sky looked very patriotic.  Red, white and blue.  This is London and we are not afraid and we are not changing our way of life.P1080360The Queen’s guards play their instruments and march on to the palace.P1080357 I am so pleased we saw that and it set us up perfectly for a wonderful day in sunny London.P1080364We walked through Green Park and on to the Royal Academy of Art in Piccadilly.P1080372London has so many beautiful buildings.  Remember to always look up or you miss some extraordinary architecture, such as these statues set in alcoves along the front of the Academy.P1080369This was a small exhibition but very interesting and I really enjoyed it.  I appreciated Lara and Harvey coming with me as it’s not something they would have chosen to do but they came along willingly and hopefully got something out of it too.  I definitely did.P1080371P1080370After the exhibition we meandered through Piccadilly and Soho and enjoyed the many sights of London.P1080375Our chosen lunch venue (Mildred’s) was closed so we went to Tapas Brindisa. Lara had bought me a cookbook by my favourite vegan bakers who make the BEST cupcakes.  Can’t wait to try making some of these.P1080381I was given a complimentary Mother’s Day cocktail and then had a sherry and citrus cocktail with the most amazing olives.P1080382And salted almonds, vegetable croquettes and sourdough toast with tomatoes.P1080383Then more bread with garlic, olive oil and herbs, a fennel, radish and orange salad and wilted spinach with pine nuts and raisins.  We feasted and chatted and laughed and had a really wonderful lunch time.  It was the best and I felt very lucky to spend my day with two such delightful companions.P1080385We walked some more after lunch and ended up in Golden Square.P1080393These pink tulips were so pretty.P1080392An unusual sculpture.P1080390Lara had found the Nordik Cafe for us to try but it was a bit dark and nothing special.  But it didn’t matter because the rest of the day definitely was; it was very special.P1080394London in the Spring sunshine was the perfect place to spend Mother’s Day with my 2 favourite people on the planet.  I hope all the Mummys among my friends and family had a lovely day too.

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Aloe Aloe

I lost 2 pounds last week which was a bit of a pleasant surprise after the weekend’s excesses and my Prosecco evening last Wednesday.  I felt happy about that and really pleased I bought my new scales last week so I can plot my progress.

It looked like a promising day on the terrace today; shame I had to work but I intended to get out for a walk at some point.P1080305I juiced up a bag of watercress, some blueberries and 2 apples for breakfast and made them in to a smoothie with half an avocado and some aloe vera jelly.  P1080313Check out that monster aloe vera leaf!P1080314When you cut in to it the centre is full of jelly.P1080315I looked up what to do with it (any advice would be appreciated though) and I read to peel it and blend it in to a smoothie.  I also rubbed some of the gloopy jelly on my face, hands and arms.  I cut off a piece about the size of half a small avocado.P1080317It looks pretty.P1080319It tasted very pleasant.P1080320For lunch I made a large salad bowl with some kimchi which is a Korean fermented vegetable condiment.P1080321I had some rice, alfalfa and radish sprouts, chestnut mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, spinach, wilted red kale, beetroot , mangetout and cucumber.P1080322I snacked on some prunes, dried apricots and dried mango in the afternoon and for supper had less than half a pizza.  I bought the base and topped it with some roasted tomatoes I had grown last year, roasted and then frozen.  And one slice of 3 different  vegan cheeses I wanted to taste test.  Not bad.P1080323At about quarter to six we took Milton for a walk on the beach with Rebecca and Beryl.  It was an extraordinary sunset.  There are no filters or enhanced edits on these photos.

Looking West, shortly before 6pm.IMG_4590Looking East.  Such a different light.IMG_4592This dear old dog of ours does love the beach.IMG_4594The colours in the sky just got better and better as we walked West.IMG_4596The stunning sky was reflected in the sand which made the sunset twice as good .IMG_4598IMG_4600IMG_4604The only editing on this photo was some cropping.  It really was amazing being out there and we walked further than we thought we had as we kept walking in the pinkness.IMG_4607We walked back along the track beside the railway line.IMG_4609I ate too many dried fruits today which massively added to my calorie count today.  I consumed 1,966 calories, nearly half of which was from the dried fruits.  I had no idea they had sooo many calories.

I walked over 8,000 steps which is not my target but not bad for a working from home day.

I only managed 6 hours 48 minutes sleep.

I can confirm that the aloe vera and dried fruit (prunes!) lived up to their reputation for being a laxative !

 

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Walking in Hastings and London

Another weekend comes to an end and as I enjoy looking back at the pictures I have taken, I am happy to say it was another good one.

Saturday was a lovely sunny day.  I went in to town, to Trinity Wholefoods to get some provisions for the day.P1080260Lucy and Rebecca were coming for lunch so I made My New Roots’ Four Corners Soup for lunch.P1080261Such a great recipe.P1080262Lots of green leaves; red kale and spinach.P1080263I made my first massage kale salad.  I put 1 tsp olive oil and 1 tsp lime juice with a little salt in the salad bowl and massaged that in to the kale.  After about 1 minute,  the thick kale leaves became much softer.  I chopped them up and mixed them with the other salad ingredients: spinach, chestnut mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, mange tout, alfalfa and radish sprouts.  We had a bowl of salad first and then a bowl of soup.P1080264Having nourished our bides, we went on another Hastings Greenway walk.  This one from Alexandra Park to the Conquest Hospital on The Ridge.  This was a very pretty, mainly car free and at time hilly walk.P1080266P1080267It’s definitely Spring.P1080268After the walk we went to the cafe in the park for a cuppa.P1080270It was lovely sitting in the sunshine with Lucy and Rebecca and I could have stayed much longer but I had plans for the evening so had to get going.P1080271I travelled up to Muswell Hill on Saturday afternoon to spend the afternoon with my sisters Lucy and Abi.

While sitting on the long train journey up to London (about 100 minutes) I felt very hungry.  Really hungry.  So between the mainline station and the Underground I went in to a shop and bought and ate, a Bounce ball, small box of Graze nuts and a bag of vegetable crisps.  I had been so good all week and then just fell off the wagon completely.  When I arrived at Lucy’s I had wine and crisps.  I am so bad sometimes too often.

Lucy cooked us all dinner of rice, beans and a delicious tomato and avocado salad.  My Neice Olivia commented that it was a bit “I’m a Celebrity, Get Me out of Here” which made me laugh.  She exaggerates of course, it was lovely.  We had a couple of drinks in the pub and a lovely evening.

I did well with walking – 14,940 steps.  Very badly with calories but ok with sleep; 6 hours 41 minutes.P1080268

After a very leisurely Sunday morning we walked up to Highgate to meet Lara and Harvey and then walked back again, through Highgate Woods.P1080275P1080276We pottered about in the shops for a bit as Muswell Hill still has many independent shops, such as Martyn’s, a lovely grocery shop.P1080277Local produce.P1080278I bought some dried apricots, mango and prunes and paid for them at this cute hatch.P1080279Great shop.P1080280We ended up in La Porchetta for pizza.P1080282Yummy pizza and a very pleasant Valpolicella.P1080287The portions were ridiculously large and it was good and tasty food.P1080288Check these out!  These incredible little paintings are on squished chewing gum blobs on the pavement.  They are so detailed and so much more attractive than the grey blobs.  This one is next to my shoe for scale.

P1080291I think this is my favouriteP1080293I liked these and love how imaginative artists are.  I wonder why he decided to start painting gum blobs.

Muswell Hill has a Planet Organic so I stocked up on some goodies and also a couple of sweet treats because we bought desserts to have back home at Lucy’s, rather than in the restaurant.  I bought a small bar of chocolate covered marzipan (divine) and a ‘Snackers’.P1080299The Snackers looks better than it tastes, mainly because there was too much very dark chocolate.P1080302We had a very relaxing afternoon together at my sister’s lovely flat.P1080301I do like a relaxed family day.P1080304Harvey and I caught the train home and had a simple supper of a large bowl of soup.

Today I walked 11,605 steps, ate far too many calories and had 7 hours 41 minutes sleep.  8 hours remains elusive.

I hope you all had a good weekend too.

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The Room

Remember this photo?

IMG_4516I took it a couple of weeks ago of the one horrible room in my otherwise lovely home.  This house was split in to flats and this room was a kitchen.  You need to walk through this room and through a lean-to so you can get in to the garden.

I have moved from a much larger house and one that had plenty of storage space.  This house has no attic space, no study, no utility room and no cellar or basement.  So I needed to make this room a bit of a combination utility, study and storage room but also leave a clear path to the garden.P1080123How was that bright acid yellow ever popular?P1080124I will definitely need a plasterer.P1080125This looks like a war zone.P1080126P1080130I am hoping that when the old plaster board and pine cladding is removed, I will find the original architrave.P1080129I would like to preserve the sink and have it on a new cupboard.P1080128The ceiling definitely needs replacing; polystyrene is so last year (or 20 !).P1080127Two weeks and a lot of hard work, mess and dust later ……IMG_4516P1080139Rotten floorboards.P1080132The architrave emerges.P1080135P1080136It is very yellow though.P1080137It’s all there.P1080134…. Ta daa.P1080247That looks better – lots of storage space.P1080246I do like my new shelves.P1080251The original cupboard looks great now it’s been painted as does the fire place and the picture rail has been put back.P1080249I am looking forward to getting everything organised in here.P1080250I need to decide what to do with the lean-to as it is draughty and very unsightly.P1080252Hard to believe it is the same room.P1080253I have run out of money so can’t have the floor done yet and will get a rug to put down until I can get a set of reclaimed floorboards laid, sanded and waxed.P1080254I do confess I struggled with the untidiness, chaos and dust of this little project but I am delighted with the finished result.  It looks brilliant.  A huge thank you to Peter Laurense who did all the work apart from the plastering which he managed.  All I had to do was choose the units and counter top (from Howdens) and paint colour (F&B’s James White).  I highly recommend Peter and let me know if you want his details.  He is very pleasant to have around, works very hard and is really good at what he does.  Thank you Peter.

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Pizza Night

It’s Friday, yippee.  I worked from home today and had a reasonably well paced day.

Half a pineapple for breakfast.P1080234Rebecca popped in for a cup of green tea and brought me this charming little bunch of camellias from her garden.  Thank you Rebecca.P1080241I have a savoy cabbage and needed inspiration for what to do with it.P1080235Aren’t they beautiful?P1080237I found a recipe for aduki bean and vegetable soup in an old cookbook of mine; ‘Entertaining With Cranks’.  I used that recipe as a base and swopped some of the ingredients in the recipe with some vegetables that needed using upP1080243

Onion, garlic, leeks, celery, carrots and savoy cabbage.  This cooked in stock and a can of tomatoes and was seasoned with cumin, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper and when it was ready, I blended it in to a smooth soup.P1080238I munched on an apple while the soup cooked.  I only had one, not all of them!P1080239It did not taste great.  I don’t know what it was but it had a very bitter taste.  So I added a can of light coconut milk and some sweetcorn which helped but it still was not great.  I ate it anyway as it had so many nutritious ingredients in it.P1080244For supper I found a pizza in the freezer which I was happy about because I did not feel like cooking.P1080257I have no desire to eat vegan food that looks like meat and this realistic soya ‘meat’ put me off a bit actually.P1080258The pizza was ok but I wouldn’t rush out to buy another one.  I liked the salad which was a simple one made with spinach, tomatoes and alfalfa sprouts.P1080259

Today’s food came to 1,354 calories.

I walked with Milton along the promenade this evening and that helped get me up to nearly 7,000 steps which is not great but I find it difficult when I work from home.

I slept better last night and managed 7 hours and 11 minutes which I needed.

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Prosecco’d

Here’s a 2 day catch up as I was rather waylaid yesterday evening by a bottle of Prosecco and a lovely friend.

Wednesday was a very tough day and I didn’t get a chance to eat anything until lunch time, by which time I was very hungry so I had a wholemeal Piada ( a wrap) with 30 g humous, mixed lettuces and alfalfa sprouts.  I inhaled that in about 10 seconds.P1080211I spent a little longer enjoying the last portion of the peanut stew, sprinkled with fresh coriander.  I will be making this again as it was so fabulous.P1080212I snacked on 2 bananas in the afternoon and sipped green tea.P1080214We were going out in the evening so supper was very hasty and not at all imaginative.  I chopped up some potatoes, seasoned with salt, pepper and thyme and instead of oil, added a little water to the pan.  Then popped them in a hot oven for about half an hour.P1080215I had the potatoes with more than half a large head of broccoli and half a can of baked beans. It was filling and the broccoli added a lot of nutrients.P1080216I had a wonderful evening at Marion’s.  Oh my, how we can chat!  Colin did well and managed to get a few words in as well but it must be said that we can talk and we did.  There is always so much to discuss and I really appreciated the support and advice I was given.  And thoroughly enjoyed the evening.

I was amazed at the beautiful recipe book Jo Jo created for her vegan sister for Christmas.  I sent some recipes to be included and this was the first time I had seen it and it was fantastic.  In our online way of life, it was lovely to have something to hold and look at on printed paper .  Well done JoJo, this is amazing. P1080219Hmm………, rather a lot of this was consumed.  But on the plus side we did not have anything to eat, such as crisps or other salted and roasted snacks.

P1080220By the time I had tottered over the road and fallen in to bed, I had consumed 1,704 calories, much of which was not plant food!  I only walked 7,723 steps and only had 5 hours and 3 minutes sleep, so not the healthiest of days.  Mind you, not the worst either!

Today was a gorgeous day and I suspect the warmest of the year so far.  The sky was all blue and the sun bright as I walked to the office at 8 am this morning.P1080223Amazingly I didn’t feel bad after too much to drink and not enough sleep so didn’t do what I often do which is to buy a large milky coffee and a big starchy bready something.  I popped in to Waitrose and bought some grapes and coconut and enjoyed them with a large green tea.P1080224I had a rare lunch out with 2 of my work colleagues because Phoebe, who worked with us last year, came to meet us.  We wandered through the Barbican to Pizza Express.P1080225P1080226P1080227I had the superfood salad as a starter and unusually for me, just did not think about the dressing which was not vegan as it contains egg yolk.  This would have easily been made vegan by just asking for the salad without the dressing and I feel disappointed I didn’t do that.  I ate it all and did enjoy the salad.  It was made with black rice, edamame beans, red quinoa, mung beans, chickpeas, cranberries, pumpkin seeds and kale on a bed of green leaves, peppers and red onion.  It was yummy and I will have it again but without the dressing!P1080228As a main I had the classic Veneziana without the cheese.  So a pizza base with tomato sauce, pine kernels, red onion, capers, black olives and sultanas.  I really enjoyed it but the best part about the lunch was sharing it with Paul, Maya and Phoebe.P1080229Now this was bad but I had to have it.  There is a shop in Euston that sells the best ever samosas and now and again, one of our colleagues pops over to Euston and buys a huge box full, all vegetable samosas, and shares them round the office.  Worth every calorie.P1080230To balance out the excess of the past 24 hours, I had a juice for supper, made with half a pineapple, 2 apples and several sticks of celery.P10802332,142 calories today which is far too many.  I would have had less than that because the calories include over 700 for my pizza but I didn’t have cheese on it and the online calorie look up assumes I did.  I did walk over 11,000 steps so that was good and I will be going to bed earlier tonight than last night!

The vegetable juice I had tonight was very enjoyable, but the prosecco and lovely company last night was much better.

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Deja Vue

I was in London working today but was super organised and took all my food in with me.  I batch cooked everything yesterday, so eating today was very easy.

Breakfast.

P1080203

Lunch.

I couldn’t eat the avocado because it was too brown but I enjoyed everything else.P1080204

Exactly the same as yesterday.P1080205

Dinner.

Another portion of the yummy peanut stew.P1080207

Total calories consumed was 1037.

I did a lot more walking and managed 11,800 steps today.

Only 5 hours 47 minutes sleep which is not enough but it was a very deep sleep so I coped.

 

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Diet Day 1, Again

I had a lovely weekend, mainly because Lara came home which is always a treat for us all.  My favourite time of the week is Saturday morning when you have the whole weekend ahead of you.  Low tide was 9:23 so we were down on the beach by 9 to make the most of it.

This is such a magical place; filled with space and light, it makes me feel so happy and alive.P1080152We pottered rather than walked briskly today and enjoyed looking at all the exposed rocks and rockpools.P1080154We walked along towards the pier.P1080155An extraordinary structure.P1080156It’s worth being on the sand early so you almost have it to yourself.P1080159The wind picked up a bit and I had wet feet so we walked back to the car along the promenade.  This is part of the view from Bottle Alley.P1080162I love having my girl home.P1080163We walked a lot as we walked in to St.Leonard’s for lunch and then back again (over 17,000 steps!!) and we also relaxed a lot.  In fact we relaxed so much I had time to finish knitting the scarf I made for Lara. I am very pleased with it, particularly since it was the first pattern I had ever followed.P1080165I have bought a new set of scales.  I can not find the scales I used to have since I moved so I bought new ones and they were delivered on Sunday morning.   I didn’t want to get back to my diet on Sunday though so Lara and I had a good lunch with my Dad and in the evening I finished all the snacks in the house (crisps and houmous mainly with red wine).

This morning I weighed myself for the first time in months – it was grim!  Heigh ho, I am trying to lose weight again.  I have written down what I weighed and I hope next week I weigh a lot less.

I began with 200ml cold water and then a hot water with ginger, lime and apple cider vinegar.  I was working from home so it was easier to control what I ate and drank. P1080166I had some grapes for breakfast followed by a small juice.P1080168The ‘ginger shot’ is a Jason Vale recipe of a chunk of ginger with half an apple.  I extended it slightly to a whole apple with the ginger and I used up the lime I started this morning.P1080172I made lunch early because I was hungry.  I didn’t have enough rice or quinoa to make a portion so I cooked up a cup of buckwheat groats.  P1080169P1080170They are really easy to make.  You put 1 cup of buckwheat in to a pan with 2 cups of water ( I added some vegan stock as well), bring to the boil, simmer covered for 10 minutes and then set aside for half an hour.P1080171I ate half the buckwheat with a red pepper, some sauerkraut that Rebecca had made, celery, cherry tomatoes, pickled beetroot and some alfalfa sprouts.P1080173P1080174It was very tasty.P1080175I had about 3 cups of green tea today and 2 glasses of water.  Late afternoon I snacked on a mandarin, a banana and 6 raw almonds.P1080176I made Oh She Glows’ ‘Soul-soothing African peanut stew’ for supper .  It was quite the challenge cooking anything with Harvey and Milton lieing in the kitchen in the middle of the floor but I persevered and I am glad I did.P1080189I had a small plate of salad leaves before the peanut stew as I realised I had not had any green leaves all day.P1080193This peanut stew is fabulous.  I made it because Marion had been telling me about how much she enjoyed it when she made it for her daughter Lucy who is a vegan.  It reminded me of what a wonderful recipe it is because it is full of flavour.  This is how I made it, which is similar to Oh She Glows but with no added fat and reduced chili so Harvey could have it too.P1080194Soul-soothing African peanut stew – thanks to Oh She Glows for the recipe

  • 1 tbsp olive oil ( I used water to cut out the fat)
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red pepper, diced (I used a green one)
  • 1 jalapeno, deseeded and diced finely
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and cut in to 1 cm dice
  • 1 can tomatoes
  • salt and pepper
  • 85 g peanut butter
  • 1 litre vegetable stock
  • 1 1/2 tsps child powder (I didn’t add this)
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 handfuls of spinach or kale (I used spinach)
  • Fresh coriander for serving
  • roasted peanuts for serving (I didn’t add any extra to save calories)
  1. In a large saucepan, heat the oil (or water) and add the onion and garlic.  Saute for about 5 minutes until the onion is translucent
  2. Add the pepper, jalapeno, sweet potato and tinned tomatoes.  Simmer for 5 minutes and season with salt and pepper
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk the peanut butter with 250 ml of the vegetable stock until no lumps remain.  Stir the peanut mixture in to the pan, with the remaining 750ml of stock, child and cayenne (if using)
  4. Cover the pan with a lid and simmer for 10-20 minutes until the sweet potato is tender
  5. Stir in the chick peas and spinach and cook until the spinach is wilted
  6. Ladle in to bowls and serve with coriander (or parsley) and peanuts

I really recommend this amazing dish.  You could serve it over rice but we ate it as it is and it was lovely.  Oh She Glows says this recipe is for 6 people but we had 4 ladle fulls each which is about 1/4 of the amount.  According to Cronometer, each portion has about 400 calories.

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And that’s it.  I ate very well, both in terms of nutritionally and for a woman on a diet.  I ate 1,162 calories and I am happy with that.  I did not do much exercise though as I did not get far from my lap top all day and then I was busy all evening with chores.

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