Easter Week

Well, last week was just as uneventful as any other, but I have been trying to enjoy cooking, organizing, reading, and doing home workouts.

I have been trying to limit grocery shopping to once every two weeks, and I have been using Aldi delivery and Target drive-up, both of which are really easy to use. I picked up some healthy baking supplies, sparkling water, and home essentials last week at Target. Not pictured is parchment paper, dish sponges, and bathroom cleaner. I was happy to see tea and honey in stock. I usually start my mornings with tea. I also love the Justin’s peanut butter cups, but I have been trying to make my own, too.

We went for a couple drives through the woods last week. There were a few gorgeous days and I walked Oliver around the neighborhood, but the forest preserves were still packed! I don’t understand the thought process behind the people choosing to line up in rows there. I had a big Aldi haul delivered and got lots of frozen fruits and veggies, some proteins I can freeze, and some snacks, and it should last us 2-3 weeks.

On Fridays, I’ve been doing a circuit workout that consists of various planks, arm exercises, squats, lunges, and body weight exercises, so it’s a full-body workout. I’m still not where I was before, but I am taking it day by day as I try and heal my body and focus on getting strong again.

I spent much of Saturday cleaning, but I took my time doing it. I recently downloaded Crazy Chef, Cooking Madness, and Cooking City to my phone and I have been spending a bit too much time playing, although the games are a nice distraction. I have always loved the day before Easter because it feels like preparation for a big celebration. Even though I knew things would be a little different this year, I wanted to make the house look nice, and I made paleo lemon bars for an Easter dessert. These were made with almond flour, honey, coconut oil, eggs, lemon zest, and lemon juice.

I have never spent an Easter away from my family. Every year, we have brunch on my paternal side and dinner on my maternal side, so it was definitely weird not being together. It was 66 degrees out, but it was cloudy. I decided to go for a drive through the woods by myself and listen to music. I think that there are different ways we can choose to practice gratitude and that is a good one for me. When I got back, I started on dinner. Even though it was going to be just Julian and me, I decided to make a nice dinner and even dress up a little.

I made a roast chicken for the first time ever and it came out really nicely. I chopped onions, garlic, celery, and carrots and made a “ring” in my crock pot and then placed the chicken on top (which prevents it from cooking in its own juices) and I seasoned the chicken with sea salt, fresh cracked pepper, paprika, and fresh herbs from my herb garden and cooked it for 5 hours. I broiled it for five minutes to give it that rotisserie look. I also made garlic green beans, skin-on mashed potatoes, and broccoli. I was pretty proud of how it came out, especially since I’ve never cooked a whole holiday dinner before. So, I missed my family, but we had a pretty nice day.

I was also excited to cook using my new Food Network cookware from my mother-in-law. My old pans were totally burned on the bottom and really scratched up, and they weren’t very non-stick. The new set is better in looks, quality, and they are much easier to clean. So far, I love them.

This week, I have not done anything very exciting. I did an arm workout Monday using light weights, a resistance band, and a pull-up bar, and I did yoga yesterday and an ab circuit today. I have been having fun with mocktail creations at the end of the workday. This one was so good–it’s made of orange tea, sparkling lemonade water, ginger kombucha, and lime.

I’ve also tried to be a little more creative in the kitchen. Last night, I decided to make shrimp tacos with cauliflower rice. Usually, I just saute shrimp in a pan, but I decided to make low-carb crispy shrimp and toss it in my homemade chipotle sauce. I blended almond flour with salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and paprika. I dipped the shrimp in egg wash and then the coating mixture and lightly fried in avocado oil. The chipotle sauce is made from mayo, chipotle in adobo, lime juice, salt, pepper, and garlic cloves. Julian said it was amazing and I should sell it. I’ll take that compliment!

Tonight, I will take it easy in the kitchen and just make some broccoli and veggie burgers. I hope everyone is doing okay. I have been having tele-therapy sessions and they have been helpful. I also like to use the Calm app, do yoga, and use my diffuser. None of these things are instant fixes, but having support and taking care of yourself is important. I wish you all well.

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