Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Texas: Food, Beer, and Fun in one weekend, gotta love it!!

Hi everyone!
I hope this finds you healthy and happy!
I am sitting on the plane of last leg of our Trip to Texas and thought I could share with you all that we experienced over our long Independence Day weekend. 
Now if you are not a fan of Texas or do not want to hear someone gushing about it, you may want to stop reading now, otherwise here we go. We flew in to San Antonio jumped into a rental car and took off! We were on our way to the 41st annual Wilie Nelson 4th of July picnic in Fort Worth the next day, but first we had to stop in Round Rock for dinner. Why you might ask, no, not for the world famous donuts at the Round Rock Bakery which use to be a must before we went wheat free, but because that is where the Salt Lick Barbeque was located. The Salt Lick has 3 locations now. The original is in Driftwood and it is really quaint, if you ever get a chance to go there do it, you will love it if you like Barbeque. *Side Note: many people think that grilling is barbequing IT IS NOT. Grilling is what you might do on your home grill or what is often called a barbeque. True Barbeque is where the meet is usually prepared with a dry rub and then left to set for several hours, after that it is smoked over wood at a low temperature in either a smoker or a pit  for sometimes 12 - 18 hours depending on the size and type of meat. After this process it is sliced and served, sometimes mopping occurs, that is when sauce is mopped n the meat over and over. My preference and from what I have seen, Texas Barbecue is served " Dry" wth the sauce on the side.*
The Texas air permeates wth the smell of burning wood, the Salt Lick states " You can smell our pits from miles away" too funny! 
After our fill of the famous Therman's Choice plate: Brisket,Sausage and Pork Ribs, along with Beans, Potato Salad, and Cole Slaw and a Coke, everything that is flavored and carbonated is a Coke in Texas, I had a Dr. Pepper from Waco, Yum! After the purchase of shirts and Salt Lick Rub for home use, we waddled out to the car. I would also like to add that Barbeque is generally served with bread, we are wheat free so we passed on it, but did get the pickles and onions, I think they and jalepenios are a must with this type of food.
 Ok, Saturday was all about The Willie Nelson Annual 4th of July Picnic!
Its held at the Stockyard in Fort Worth. 
There are several food trucks on the grounds that we got some killer Frito Pie at that night.  
For lunch however, it was all about Billy Bob's which basically shared the parking lot and co hosts the event. ICE COLD TEXAS BEER, which is the only way to get a beer in Texas I do believe, and a BILLY BOB COB(salad) Wow! This salad makes almost any man happy with its ample amount of meat, my hubby thought it was steak, I thought it was brisket, and the bacon it was amazing! It is served in a huge bowl that was more than enough to fill us up for hours and it did! 
Back to the beer for a minute, the Picnic only serves Bud or Bud Light, Shiner Bock is our favorite and there was a newer Texas only beer we tried called Ziegen Bock, nice and smooth no aftertaste. So we bought and drank our beer in Billy Bob's in the awesome honey tonk and also provided me the opportunity to shop Texas suvinors which in my world is always a good thing :)
Well, that was a fantastic way to celebrate our 4th of July 2014.
On our way to Rockport Texas we stopped somewhere I just have to mention in San Marco which is a truck stop called Buckee's. I mention this because it is a must see. I found out that they are opening all over Texas, but this  one in San Marcos is 68 THOUSAND Sq. Ft.!  It has everything! Snacks, BBQ, drinks, fruits, Vegis, deli counter, t-shirts, home decorations, you name it, they probably have it, and yes they even have gas too. 
In Rockport we ate a great little place called Moon Dogs. It's on the water and their food and drinks are great. I had two different tacos, one fish, one beef, both excellent. We were in a party of 5, everyone ordered something different and the comments were all positive, can't beat that! 
Moon Dogs was doing a remodel: addition but were still opened, well worth your time. 
The last place I want to mention is The Crab N (in).
I mention this because it is like several restaurants that cook your fish that you bring them and they supply the sides, or you can buy the whole meal from them. 
I have never seen this before, so I thought it was a cool idea. 
I would love to tell you how wonderful the meal was, unfortunately that was not our experience. To be fair, this place is popular and it was packed. We had a table of 3-4 different groups all ordering different ways they wanted their fish prepared. We are wheat/ gluten free so we ordered ours blackened. Others ordered theirs blackened or fried. Ours came out much later than everyone else's and it was much darker. 
After finishing all I could eat, my husband and I compared notes and both of us realized the food was hard for us to finish as the salt, or extreme over salting was  rediculous. 
We were guests, and knew only three other people at the table, it was no time to complain. As our hosts were brought up to speed, one of them tried the fish and was surprised we had eaten it. 
Other people who had ordered the blackened fish, tried it, and it was totally different from what they had gotten. Could they have had an off night? 
Could they have over seasoned,?
Could they dislike tourists? All are possible, yet sometimes we all just have an off moment.
 I would simply say if you eat at one of these type of places and are not happy, remember this is Texas, most people really do care and will make you some of their fish to replace it. 
I will remember this because,

Monday, January 27, 2014

Things rolling around in my head

Hi All,
It's been a while since I have blogged, but I realized that I had pigeon holed myself in my title.  It's kind of calling my blog red pumps and then wanting to write about all the other things I have in my closet, but I can't because it wouldn't be about red pumps. So I will be adding to ITS ALL ABOUT  GREAT FOOD & COOL SHOES .... And...WHATEVER ELSE IS ROLLING AROUND IN MY HEAD.  That being said:
I graduated in June from the largest nutrition school in the world  "The Institute for Integrative Nutrition" (IIN).

 I am now a Board Certified Holistic Health Coach, with this comes great responsibility to be able to listen to others and to help guide them into making good choices in their life with all aspects including food. Food is what we eat but it is also what can change our moods from happy to angry, associate bad or hurtful feelings, and get us to do crazy things like fall asleep on your honeymoon every time you get into the car as it did me.
Food is a beautiful, magical delicious gift that I believe is meant to be enjoyed. Often times it comforts us, pacifies us, and sometimes even controls us. The key to who we are is often unlocked when we can start to put food into perspective.  I have learned that balance in every aspect of life is often either hindered or enhanced by the foods that we eat. Crazy you may think, I did, until I saw it for myself and learned how to change it so I can now have a much happier existence.

For most of my adult life I was, for lack of a better term a screaming maniac!
Oh, I felt I had my reasons, they were many, varied, and in my view justified!
I had to be taken to the hospital during church one Easter Sunday because I made sure the kids had eaten breakfast, but I didn't, which led me to having a seizure in the second pew from the front. I was carried out in front of the entire congregation, diagnosis: Hypoglycemia, the Dr. said " I don't care what you eat, but you need to eat, you are almost diabetic... Eat!".

I was told at the age of 31 that I was perimenopausal, which means you have all the symptoms of menopause, like hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, and you still get your period. Oh the joy! I had been dealing with these symptoms now for nearly 20 years. My husband, and son, who are both saints, were the last two left in the house and had to deal with the crazy lady! I tried just about every holistic remedy I could find to deal with these symptoms which went on until I enrolled in IIN.

At IIN I learned that everything I put in my mouth effects my body, not just my weight, but my mood, sleep, thoughts, relationships, EVERYTHING. Simple, yes, but I never understood putting myself last for everything including healthy food may have been thought of in my mind as sacrificial as a wife and mom but will my family remember me that way or a crazy woman, unfortunatly for me it seems to be the later. * Let me take a side road for a minute and explain. I would never blame my kids for me not taking care of myself, not in a million years! What I am saying is I did not understand nutrition the way I do now, and so rather than giving them the whole apple I knew would end up in the garbage can with only a bite or two out of it, I could have given them half and ate the rest as a snack, or forcing that extra piece of celery with peanut butter on them I could have eaten it later and the same for breakfast, they didn't have to be challenged for who is going to finish the rest, I could have eaten it. I am sure that when most people are confronted with a hungry child just as you were about to eat something you would share it or just give it to them to eat. That seems to be instilled in most parents, grandparents and caregivers, yet by doing that in my case I would then "Get busy and just forget to eat" thus sending my blood sugar plummeting and the screaming maniac would return. Ok side road ended.*

We were on a trip about two years ago with our adult children and I was playing it smart this time, I had packed snacks! Well, there never seemed to be a time to eat so of course my blood sugar dropped and by the time I got to the food, I was slamming doors, mad at my husband for not taking the hints I had been giving him to stop, and then one of the kids said something to the effect of "Some things never change".

Well, I am happy to report that after graduating IIN along with my son and husband, Some things do change. I eat, I do not blame my husband or anyone else for not taking the hint that I am hungry. We have started juicing, so I always have that first thing in the morning to start the day. What I eat now is of a much higher quality of food than I had been eating in the past. If we are going on a road trip now it is about sustainability which I can not get from baked goods, even when I have made them myself, no we are talking fruits, vegetables, and hard boiled eggs for protein, and I would like to add that the last trip we took was a complete success, no meltdowns!

I have always enjoyed learning about nutrition and sharing with others, what I have found through going to IIN is how to apply that knowledge and wisdom to myself.

Do I have it all wired, no. Do I still have some hormonal meltdowns, yes, but now the first thing I do when it starts to happen is think to myself, have I eaten and what was it, is there something I should be eating that I haven't for a while? I had never put that together before. My thinking has become clear again, I don't crave sweets, and I have energy all day long. When you crowd out the bad, processed, and junk food, with the fresh, non-GMO fruits and vegetables and use grass fed local meats the changes are amazing.
If we can have clearer thinking, better sleep, more energy, and do nothing but change our diet with REAL FOOD, no powders, pills, crazy fad diets, WHY NOT? What if our kids and grand kids could be better learners, full of energy, and have fewer "Learning Difficulties" would it be worth a try?

I am learning everyday what does and doesn't work for me. Each person is different, yet we can modify and change to any individual and become successful. Are you ready to make better choices for you and your family?

If I can help anyone who is interested in taking this journey with me then all the better. 

Let's work together to change for the healthier versions of ourselves, I mean really what do we have to loose??

For More Information Contact Toni at:
Twitter: @TC_HealthCoach