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So when I move into the new place I may have limited internet access for a while I can afford to move in this weekend. I don’t think I will be able to afford to do that and get my cable internet hooked up at the same time. My connection may be up in about two to 4 weeks though. Me without internet though is not a pretty picture. It is my primary means to connect with people. If I come back a bit crazy that’s why.

It will be nice returning to cooking for myself. I have not had to do so for a while and it will be nice to return to it actually. I have my own taste in food and not everyone shares it. I am getting tired of nukable meals for lunch and such. Any one got any suggestions for food that is :
a) Cheap
b) Tasty and spicy
c) Not to bad on a diet
d) Can be frozen or refrigerated in individual servings to be taken to work.
e) Preferably involving meat.

I am trying to keep my mood up but I do have my depressive bouts. I constantly feel unsteady or unsettled. Working on the dead end feeling.

The progress of packing is slow but steady. I am making sure the things I need clear to move them is packed up first. To be honest I can store minor things at my grandparents and move them at my leisure. The big things need to be moved in a large vehicle. I really need a pick up truck to get the couch, chairs, book shelf, chest of drawers, and other large objects moved. Once those are in things will be good.

On my detective story I still don’t have a name. A good story needs a good name. Oh well I plan on the humble goal of 25000 words by dragoncon.

I need to write some more plot stuff for Eclipse before then as well. I have to finish up the culture packet among other things.

In other news I had an agent at work if a customer in New Mexico counted as international. Sigh.


( 22 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 14th, 2007 06:10 pm (UTC)
All will be good. If you need a human contact for anything while the move is happening/net access is limited give me a land line number to call. Snark and I have free nights and something like 10,000 banked roll-over minutes so there is no reason we can't call you on our dime. :)

Which Eclipse culute packets are you writting?

Aug. 14th, 2007 06:29 pm (UTC)
I wont have a land line but if things go to plan I will finally have a cell phone. One of those pay as you go numbers.

As to the Eclipse packet actually I have been writing a couple of them for a while. I will leave it to you to guess. heh.
Aug. 14th, 2007 07:00 pm (UTC)
Nukeable meals wreck havoc on diets. I'd suggest having deli meats and spreads (tuna fish, pimento, etc) for sandwiches if you have access to a refrigerator to store them during the workday until lunch--and a microwaveable soup of some sort. Preferably homemade. Overall, a soup and sandwich will both be better for you and less expensive than pre-packaged meals. Vary it up with leftovers from dinners and you should notice a drop in your grocery expenditures.

Baked chicken -- take frozen chicken breast that you can buy in multiple-pound bags at Sam's or any grocery store (Tyson is the best for this) and put into oven at 350° for about ten minutes (enough to thaw), then coat w/oil or oil-based salad dressing and season to taste (salt/pepper/whatever) and bake for about 35-40 more minutes. Cut to check if done. Viola. You can do multiple chicken breasts at a time and refrigerate or freeze what you don't eat for relatively quick dinners/lunches.

Spaghetti (or other pastas) is an old stand-by and inexpensive. If you cook ground beef then combine and heat w/sauce to top the spaghetti, leftover noodles can be put together with the meatsauce in tupperware and will keep in a refrigerator. You can reheat in a saucepan/pot using a little butter or oil to make sure the noodles don't burn.

It may be worth your time to invest in a crockpot/slow-cooker if you don't already have one. Stovetop or slow-cooked chili's, stews, soups, roasts, et cetera are all excellent meals and easily refrigerated or frozen for later use.

Go to your surrounding grocery stores and meat markets to write down (and keep track of) their going price for whatever meats you like (ground beef/turkey, pork, chicken, steaks, et cetera), then start picking up Sunday papers and looking at the grocery inserts to see who is having sales on what meats. Since meat products make up a large chunk of a grocery bill, buying in the bulk quantities that you are able to freeze will help you cut costs.

If you have room for and keep a pantry, it doesn't hurt to do the same for any commonly purchased dry/canned good items, too.
Aug. 14th, 2007 07:43 pm (UTC)
i do have a crock pot and the first thing I am making is my chilli. I make a pretty good chilli and I can make it last for days and days if I am the only one eating it.

As to the nuke a meals being bad for th diet, I have been getting the lean cuisines which have a pretty low calorie count. They are handy but expensive and they get old.
Aug. 14th, 2007 07:55 pm (UTC)
It's less about calories and more about what's in the food. It could have no calories, but if it is loaded with stuff that 'replace' that vacuum that is unhealthy for you (and pretty much all nukeable meals are, much less low-fat/low-cal crap) it doesn't matter how close calorically you're sticking to a diet, you'll suffer for it. The best diets are all about moderation of intake rather than deprivation, and making sure what you're eating is both balanced and quality (rather than cardboard).
Aug. 14th, 2007 09:03 pm (UTC)
Moderation of intake and deprivation are both very relative terms - one person might be losing weight on a 2200 calorie diet, while another would be gaining weight.

I'd contend that the best diets are the ones that motivate you to stay with them and still improve your health. Balance, quality, and moderation are ideals, but they aren't everything. Finding meals that a person wants to eat, and are still at least somewhat healthy? That's the key.

The nukeable meals might not be great, but they have portion control built in and can help a person learn what a good sized meal is. They are also much better than other instant options not designed for dieting or healthier living.

And of course, it really depends on the person. I've only had success losing weight by doing low calorie. Takes me a while to adjust, but if you look at natural foods that are low calories (vegetables, grilled chicken, etc), eventually you'll be eating filling meals and eating healthier because the caloric cost of unhealthy food is too high.
Aug. 14th, 2007 09:41 pm (UTC)
Yes, and no.

The foodstuffs commonly provided in America's marketplace are loaded with unnatural fillers, preservatives, and flavorings. It is those that cause obesity, not calories. Populations who eat unadulterated foods (such as the French, Norwegians, etc) average higher caloric intakes than Americans, yet suffer far less obesity, and the French (as a best example) aren't exactly known for their restraint where it comes to food and drink -- they simply have laws that prevent food manufacturers from loading foodstuffs down with unhealthy crap.

Eat a healthy, natural, non-prepackaged diet that is balanced for your nutritional needs, and you can enjoy food and desserts. Yes, there will be those who will overeat for various reasons, but implying Lean Cuisine and other prepackaged foods are best examples of portion control is incorrect -- there isn't enough food or nutrition in one of those to meet the needs of my exceptionally petite girlfriend, much less anyone larger. There is, however, more than enough crap loaded into each one of those to choke a cow... or turn someone into one.

The many theories on weight control and obesity that are floated here in the U.S. all somehow revolve around deprivation -- of calories, carbohydrates, total intake, whatever. Yet Americans suffer the highest obesity rates in the world. Why? For a country based on Puritannical thought, it's second nature to react to something bad in life by depriving yourself of things which are also good. Deprivation also leads to obesity by changing our body chemistries to horde what it needs, and combined with the crap our food manufacturers like to load our food down with, and we've got a pretty hefty population.

Elsewhere? Not so much. Balanced diets, natural foods, and a modicum of physical activity -- not necessarily running on a treadmill but getting up and moving around and doing something for at least a half hour each day. That's what is required. But Americans (on the whole) don't know what a balanced diet is, have never had one, and will likely never see one because they've been mislead into believing a 'balanced diet' of 'healthy foods', and 'exercise' means sticks, tofu and beating yourself up on an exercise machine... and the American food industry is generally far more concerned about profit than the actual quality of the foods they produce.
Aug. 14th, 2007 10:01 pm (UTC)
not that your points are not valid but the reason american obesity is so high is more do to starting kids out early eating fast food. Now i got the lean cuisines cause they beat fast foods buy a mile and it was a good transition food. Once you get used to eating less in a sitting it is easier to transition to healthier eating. I am a stress eater alos. I get stressed, i want to eat. one of the ways i dealt with that was having a bunch of low calorie options to eat such as fruit and vegies. Yes i would like to transition off of Lean Cuisine but I did loose 60 lbs incorporating those as my lunch as opposed to the junk I was eating so i am hard pressed to find fault in them.
Aug. 14th, 2007 10:25 pm (UTC)
Losing weight isn't a measure of effectiveness if you're also loading up on unnatural crap and your body is losing out on what it needs in the meantime -- that usually means gaining all the weght back and then some. However, not one person I know who has adopted and maintained a healthy balanced diet combined with some sort of physical activity has regained the weight they've lost. They lose it more slowly (1-2lbs a week, tops), and in many cases actually gain a few pounds (gaining muscle before losing fat) before shedding unwanted fat, but they keep it off and are healthier for it.

Fast food is part of the problem I was addressing. It's crap. There is hardly anything 'food' related in 'fast food'. It's chemically engineered and processed to not only smell and taste good, but to get the eater to crave it later. Like other foods, there are whole new chemical bonding agents in them that our bodies have in all the course of evolution never had to deal with or adjust for, but we've decided to load them down all at once. 100 years ago much of the chemical content of what American's eat today didn't even exist -- but that crap does now... and it's in more than just Mickey D's. It is in nearly every prepackaged foodstuff you can pull off the shelf or a freezer rack.

Fresh meats, fruits, vegetables... canned/frozen goods without preservatives or added flavorings (which might read: "beans, water, salt"), dry goods that are much the same (beans, pasta, etc)... milk and juices that are organic, or again, have nothing added... and water. Lots of water.

Everything else? Biscuits in a roll, cakes in a box, those tasty collard greens in a can with spices already in them, carbonated beverages, frozen waffles, whatever. Generally... it's crap. Not as bad as Mickie D's, but not good.
Aug. 15th, 2007 03:23 am (UTC)
Not everyone can transition from a normal American diet to a more healthy diverse one.

Losing weight can be a critical issue for someone dieting. It causes much more immediate health problems and needs to be addressed. If that means taking in crap (though, I saw very little looking over this nutrition information from lean cuisine), then so be it, IF the amount of crap you are taking in is still reduced. Going from an all fast-food diet to an all healthy diet cold turkey is difficult and can lead to failure and regression if approached too quickly.

Lifestyle changes need to happen slowly and steadily. That's the only way weight really stays off, and that's the only way a lifestyle change will really stick.
Aug. 14th, 2007 08:23 pm (UTC)
solfox has already made all of the suggestions that I would make. Especially about stocking up whenever you can. Let me know your phone number as soon as you get one. It's always a good idea if you have a spare tenner from time to time to top up the credit on your phone so that you don't run short when you most need it.

My new computer came yesterday. I should have Skype back up by the weekend.
Aug. 14th, 2007 08:44 pm (UTC)
sadly I will not have skype till I get broadband up. Grumble.
Aug. 14th, 2007 08:31 pm (UTC)
Chicken Stir-fry or possibly Pork Stir-fry (depending on what kind of meat's on sale). Basic peppers (green), onions, and some carrots/zucchini/etc... are pretty cheap, and a 25 lb. bag of white rice will only run you up $10.00 or so. It keeps well for about a week and it's heat/sweetness are easily varied.
Aug. 14th, 2007 08:49 pm (UTC)
excellent suggtestion.
Aug. 14th, 2007 08:55 pm (UTC)
Mediterranean Peasant Food.

Cook dishes with meat, rather than dishes of meat.
Aug. 15th, 2007 12:59 am (UTC)
*wait for it*

So, if you come back crazy from no internet, how will we tell?

*ba-dum ksssshhh*

Anyway... I think solfox had some excellent points about nutrition in general. There is a quote I like about being healthy: "Eat food. Not too much; mostly vegetables." That's an ideal diet in a nutshell. Saying "Eat food" means - don't eat a bunch of stuff that isn't food. :)

I would suggest the Indian microwave meals that I like (from the organic section of Kroger) - but I doubt that they are cheap. You're probably best off in most cases just buying real live vegetables and such and making your own meals - that way you know what goes in there, too.

Crockpots are great - I have a whole book of interesting crockpot recipes, if you would like to copy some. I haven't had a bad recipe yet out of there.
Aug. 15th, 2007 01:03 am (UTC)
Ooh, ooh, and also - farmer's markets! Not only are you saving money and eating healthy, you're supporting local farmers. :) I still am not good at looking at prices of stuff in the store, but I'm fairly sure that the Farmer's Market (at the Church of Christ on Kingston at certain times and days, ask if you care when) has much lower prices than the supermarket.

Wayferny could tell you where the farmer's market in Oak Ridge is. Plus there are a bunch of fruit and vegetable stands that I drive by every time I go out there.
Aug. 15th, 2007 01:42 pm (UTC)

I haven't been there in a while, but they have a decent turnout.
Aug. 15th, 2007 02:17 pm (UTC)
I may go check them out. But first.....MOOOOOVVVVVIIIINNNNGGG!!!
Aug. 16th, 2007 03:47 am (UTC)
ooo oo oo! I want some of those recipies... I love just about anything slow cooked.
Aug. 15th, 2007 04:08 pm (UTC)
How 'bout curried chicken stew? Use cheap chicken quarters (which are even cheaper on sale), carrots, potatoes, onions, and whatever other veggies might be in season. Cook until the chicken is falling off the bone (you might want to remove the skin from the chicken to make it lower in fat, but definately leave the bone for flavor). Season it with a little bit of salt, maybe some garlic, a cube of chicken boullion, a bay leaf, and curry (you'd probably like it best with red curry). Eat it by itself or over brown rice.
Aug. 16th, 2007 03:49 am (UTC)
Does fish count as meat?

If it does I have a great baked Tilapia recipie you could try.
( 22 comments — Leave a comment )



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