The Old Dog’S New Life - Life ... It's Why We Cook. Blog at - 225422

Life ... It's Why We Cook.

The Old Dog’s New Life 
Mar. 2, 2011 6:18 pm 
Updated: Mar. 5, 2011 5:11 pm
I had a nice comment from Southern Gma on my last post. Here it is.

"I am taking this opportunity to let you know that all that caring and all those prayers you and my AR Angels possessed for My Littlest Bestest Friend WERE HEARD! Kira is cancer FREE! Her parents got the news today and her central line comes out Tuesday!!"

Good news is always great to hear! Thanks, Southern Gma! And many thanks to the AR folks for keeping Kira and Southern Gma in your prayers.

Of course, we still have Danny and Cindy Lepp on the worry board. Cindy has a new update at Caring Bridge for us to read and catch up.< Several AR folks have been there already, and left a note in the guestbook for them.

We have sorted out our entire pantry and cupboards ridding them of anything that is not whole grain, has higher than we like sodium content, has triglycerides, hydrogenated anything and artificial color identified by a number. All of it has been donated to the food bank. I felt guilty about donating something that I deemed unhealthy. I decided that I had eaten that stuff all of my life and that it was not unhealthy so much as our new approach to eating was healthier than when those items were included in our diet.

My wife has, very willingly, joined me in this new lifestyle. She (far more so than I) has always paid close attention to her health and the health of her family. She will walk with me whenever she can and has her own exercise routine where at her workplace. She is able to take long walks there, also.

My breakfasts have been interesting. No. Not interesting. Downright boring! I sure do miss Sausage gravy over butterd biscuits with a couple sunnyside eggs setting atop some hash browns with bacon at the side.

Breakfast has been oatmeal. I’ll add raisins or dates. Instead of water, I’ll cook it in milk with the fruit added. After cooking, I’ll top it off with a flavored yogurt. I’ll have a couple slices of my wife’s homemade whole wheat bread. Instead of all butter I have a 50-50 mix of EVOO and butter to use as a spread.

My morning snack might be a banana, apple, orange or yogurt.

At lunchtime, I’ll fix a plate of vegetables or prepare a whole grain tortilla spread with humus.

My afternoon snack is from ingredients of the evening meal.

Because my wife has had a more difficult time trying to lose weight, we are going to change our evening meal to be very small portions of meat and carbohydrates and larger portions of fruit and green vegetables.

We use calorie counting only as one indicator of intake, not as a rule of consumption. We have chosen quality of food and moderate portions as our rules.

I have a workout period of an hour and a half that is low impact but strenuous. I start exercising after I have been awake for an hour. I work an exercise until I "feel the burn" then I stop. (Old muscles heal slowly so they cannot be pushed.) During the day I will walk briskly for at least a mile.

Once I have concluded this phase of retraining my body, I will get a trainer to advise me with a more advanced program.

It has been three weeks since we started this program. Even more results to enjoy.

First,.My lungs are now clear of congestion. They haven’t been clear since October of 2009. The medicals said it was probably because my lungs were cleaning themselves of the mess left from smoking.

Second. I have lost two more pounds. Not much, I know, but it was lost in one week so, I feel good about it. That brings the total lost pounds to 13. 180 target weight isn’t that far away anymore. I wonder if I should go for more.

Third. My breathing is deeper and less labored. Love that!

Fourth. I am more alert of things happening around me.
Mar. 2, 2011 7:04 pm
You sound like you are on the right track. So happy things are going well and so happy Kira is cancer free :)
Mar. 3, 2011 3:16 am
Wow Mike that is great!! Sounds like you have found the "Fountain of Youth"! Keep it up and keep us posted... And - hurray for little Kira - that is especially great news!
Mar. 3, 2011 4:45 am
Good for you! sounds like you've got a great plan
Mar. 3, 2011 5:47 am
Good Morning, Nurse Ellen! Southern Gma and Kira have been a very special story for me and I am very happy for them.
Mar. 3, 2011 5:55 am
Good morning Mother Ann! Not exactly a fountain of youth. In my youth, this workout would not qualify as a warm up! I hope to be posting results with the food we have consumed. Right now, we are still putting pieces together for an effective program. The key for our program is to eat the right foods and put those foods to work.
Mar. 3, 2011 5:57 am
The plan is still in it's infancy, GAHSMOMX3, but thank you!
Mar. 3, 2011 9:34 am
sounds great Mike! keep up the good work!
Mar. 3, 2011 12:47 pm
Keep up the good work, Mike! And GREAT news about Kira!
Mar. 3, 2011 6:08 pm
Thank you, njmom!
Mar. 3, 2011 6:08 pm
Thank you, Christine M!
Mar. 4, 2011 9:26 am
Glad things are going so well, Mike. I know I've told you before, you're quite an inspiration to me after all you've been through and still continued to cook (even when your tastebuds were out of commission). So good to here about Kira!! I certainly believe that when a large group of people get together to pray/meditate that it can offer wonderful results. Actually, there have been quite a number of experiments on this subject to back it up! Have a wonderful weekend, Mike!
Mar. 4, 2011 4:49 pm
I will, Lace! Thank you. I agree that a concentration of prayer, meditaion and/or positive energy will do so much. I felt it when each of my problems first surfaced. In that time, Kira and Danny Lepp became a focus for me that I could pay forward what has been done for me.
Mar. 5, 2011 8:40 am
Hi Mike! I know what you mean about donating food that you yourself no longer deem fit to eat, but on the other hand you can't save everyone and I am sure it will go to good use. I too felt guilty while owning my fast food restaurant. One of our products won the "salt lick" for most sodium in any other Canadian fast food product. This did not sit well with me, watching my family eating there because it was handy because all of worked so much had to stop as well. I too since selling have not even had "1" fast food product, this has been since Aug. 2009. I too purged my personal pantry and rid of products that are unhealthy. We eat whole grain and fresh meals, nothing processed, canned and my hubby and I have many meatless meals. I substitute by using more vegan or legumes. Our two children also have changed their diets considerably with only the occassional fast food fix...Here in Canada as a business owner I had to pay a health tax based on the yearly wages to my staff, you can imagine what a hefty amount that could be. I believe that in the future there will be more and more taxes to make up for the added drain on our health care system due to unhealthy people due to their lifestyles. You can see that making some changes can make a huge difference to one's health and the responsibility lies on each individual, you are making great headway in your desire to get healthy again. Good for you and for your wife in joining you on those walks, I am sure that you are looking forward to some warmer weather and that you will be ready to go even further with each week. I am also so happy to hear about Kira, what wonderful news for her and her family and Southern Gramma. God bless all of you!
Mar. 5, 2011 11:35 am
So glad to hear SGma's news. Last I heard the tests were looking positive. Get a puppy and your exercise routine will increase tenfold! I haven't RAN in so many years but the little tyke took off like a bat out of H with me galloping behind trying to catch his leash. Good thing I've been doing cardio or I'd be collapsed in the pasture:) I've been trying for years to wean my family off "bad for them foods". Some days I win, others not so much. I love humus. I honestly think I could sub beans for most of my meals. I've even tried making veggie burgers. I really like them too! Good luck with your new routine, you will get used to it!
Mar. 5, 2011 1:40 pm
Thank you, Janet! As I write this it is 35 degrees and a steady snowfall. Can I wait for spring? Guess I gotta. When the roads are clear and dry, my walks will become four miles. If I take my camera they'll likely be even longer. I am amazed at how rapidly my body improved in such a short time. Beats taking pills, for sure!
Mar. 5, 2011 1:48 pm
Hi, Cat! We are making veggie burgers, and like them very much. The only real hamburger I have had is one that was 100% bison. We make our humus two batches at a time and add different ingredients. This last batch was olive/garlic and curry/garlic/pimento. The Tahini I will use as a spread over garlic toast. OMG!
Mar. 5, 2011 4:20 pm
Thanks, Mike for the good news about Kira! I have been wondering about her for quite some time now. I am proud of the progress you have made to better health! You deserve an "atta boy" for that!!
Mar. 5, 2011 5:11 pm
Haven't seen you around for a while, grannygigi! Thanks for the atta boy! I'll keep it! Although, the cancer center has a lot to do with it. Their after treatment program got me on the track to physical and mental recovery.
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Mike Harvey, daPITA

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Battle Creek, Michigan, USA

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Dec. 2008

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Grilling & BBQ, Frying, Stir Frying, Mexican, Italian, Southern, Gourmet

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About Me
At age 16, I began cooking when my mother was injured in an accident that kept her off her feet for five weeks. At first, my repertoire was fried hot dogs with pork and beans, boiled hot dogs with macaroni and cheese or pizza from a box. After a couple weeks of this, my younger brother was the first to protest and demand variety and my dad was quick to support him. That was my first cooking challenge, learning to plan a meal. About that time, mom returned from the hospital and from her bed, began teaching me things like roast beef, fried chicken, stews and all the sides and trimmings. In 1967, I married and my wife designated herself as the cook and this continued until 1999. It was then that I (voluntarily) began cooking again. At some point, I realized that I was having fun and began searching for recipes that were more challenging and interesting. I found AR and used it's recipes for a long time before registering and later becoming an active member.
My favorite things to cook
Soups. How can I go wrong? They are a great way to use up leftovers and those veggies that are approaching the end of their usefulness. They are always an original recipe. Roasts and steaks are favored, also. Getting the right "doneness" and choosing appropriate sides for a tastey and attractive meal is a continuing and always evolving menu.
My favorite family cooking traditions
If creating impulsive menus and recipes is a tradition then, (I guess) we have a tradition. A new tradition is developing. I have a fruitcake recipe that, I believe, is near perfection. I make it just before Thanksgiving so it is aged enough for the Christmas/ New Year holidays.
My cooking triumphs
Without a doubt, my own recipe for a Reuben Sandwich. It has been a demanded item for many years and I shared it in my AR blog.
My cooking tragedies
Too many. I have been able to throw them out and have something new before my wife gets home. Most of the time, anyway.
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