March Photo-A-Day Part-III

Hey hey :)

Happy Saturday!!

How are you all enjoying your weekend so far?

I’ve been chilling at home for the most part, apart from the morning Body Attack class and a grocery haul at Coles. Good thing Dad’s still here visiting, so he can drive me there :P It’s so much more convenient than having to bus/walk all the way there and back with tonnes of stuff!!

Anyway, this post is meant for Part-III of my March Photo-A-Day Challenge!!

For those who missed out, here are the links to the first two parts:

March Photo-A-Day Part-I

March Photo-A-Day Part-II

A huge thanks to Chantelle from fat mum slim for hosting this amazing challenge :D

Do visit her blog to know more about it! She’s hosting one every month, and of course, there will be one for April too so if you’re interested just hop onto the track with us by signing up for it here.

So here are my photos for the rest of the month!!

Enjoy ;)

Day-14: Clouds

Day-15: Car

Day-16: Sunglasses

Day-17: Green

Day-18: A Corner Of Your Home

Day-19: Funny

Day-20: Before / After

Day-21: Delicious

Day-22: Kitchen Sink

Day-23: Moon

Day-24: An Animal

Day-25: Breakfast

Day-16: Key

Day-27: Your Name

Day-28: Trash

Day-29: Feet

Day-30: Toy

Day-31: Where You Relax

Phew! Not sure if that was enjoyable for any of you, but it sure was fun for me to have a theme for a photo everyday. (Though I cheated on some of the days, like the “moon” day, when I was too tired at night and forgot to look outside for it :P)

Looking forward to the April challenge too!!!

     - Asuma

Mindful Eating

Hello, lovely people of the internet world :)

Hope everyone’s had a good week without too much stress on your shoulders, but even if you did, TGIF! Just half a day left to go, and it’s the weekend so you can unwind and relaaaax, before another busy week starts again ;)

Anyway.
I’ve been thinking a lot about mindful eating lately.

I have always been aware of what I eat and try to take time to enjoy my meals.
But that does not mean that I’ve been mindful about what I’m eating while I am eating.
Living alone, I tend to eat most of my meals alone, and I do that in front of a computer or an iPad 99% of the time.
Reading blogs with food by my side has become my vice.
It keeps me company and doesn’t leave me feeling lonely eating by myself.
Plus, reading blogs is my all-time favourite activity! And so is eating good food, so doing two of my favourite things together seemed like a good idea to me, and the habit just stuck.
I don’t keep noshing on and on mindlessly (just finish that portion and that’s it), but I do think that my activity takes the focus of my meal time away from the food, despite the fact that I take a good amount of time enjoying them.

Sometimes I think it might be a good idea to sit down alone with my plate of food without any distractions, and eat slowly, just concentrating on how amazing the food tastes and feels in my mouth.
But I used to be scared of how I would feel if I sat down without anything to do.
Confronting myself alone, with the possibility of boredom seemed impossible to overcome.
I guess I still somewhat feel that way, that I always need to be doing something, that my mind needs to be buzzing 24/7.
When I say it out loud it sounds insane, but I’m sure a lot of you out there feel that way too. Most of us are, in this world today that’s filled with information gushing in from all directions.

However, when I practise yoga, I am only thinking about my body.
My sole concentration is on how my limbs, back, abdomen and every little structure that is a part of my body feels at that moment.
Of course I can’t always keep that strong concentration throughout the entire practice all the time, but at least I attempt to.
And you know what, it’s not scary at all.
I am not thinking about uni work. Nor the laundry that needs to be folded.
I’m just me, at that moment, just being.
It’s actually a wonderful feeling.

So now that made me think – can I do the same thing while I’m eating?
The idea is still a bit scary.
In fact, I have been thinking about it for about a week now but still haven’t been able to implement it.
But now that I’ve written about it and exposed it to all of you out there, I’ve got to do it! (I’m not saying “I have to do it” in my usual OCD way, but merely pointing out that making a decision public could sometimes serve as a motivation to put things into action.)
I’m not sure if I can do it for every single meal, but I will definitely try when I have the time.
Especially when the weather is nice and it’s just such a pleasure to sit in the warm sun, maybe with a comforting bowl of oatmeal :)

Alrighty then, I’ve got to run to the counseling session at uni now, and later I’ve got a practical class to attend, but that’s all and the week is over :D

Have a good weekend you all ;)

- Asuma

Tired on Tuesday Night + Recipes (that I want to try out)

Hello people :)

I hope your Monday or Tuesday, depending on whichever country it is that you are in right now, is going better than mine.

Because I have never felt this lethargic on a Tuesday night as I do right now. Ever.

I really don’t mean to complain, but these days I can’t help feel as though a dementor just walked through me and sucked any tiny bit of life that was left in me. (Yeah dramatic, I know, but that’s who I am :P)

I could go on and on about how sucky this feels if you let me, but that just won’t be helping anyone. Not you. Not me. Nobody likes a whiney and tired biatch. (No, auto-correct, please don’t correct the spelling “biatch”, that’s exactly the way I am going to call myself tonight.)

I am, by no means, depressed. No no no, that sad girl’s gone, wayyy back in the past.

You know what, I think I just need some sleep. Not that I didn’t get a good solid 11-hour sleep last night. Yup, you heard me right. But I think I just need a little bit more :P

Sorry I don’t really have anything interesting from my life to share with you all today…but I will share a few links to recipes I found on other blogs recently that I really really want to try out. Hope you’ll like them :)

Oh, and I’m pretty sure they don’t read this blog, but a quick congratulatory shout-out to Toby and Tim for their graduation today!!! Sorry you couldn’t attend the ceremony though, Tim, but I’m sure you’re having great fun at the retreat!!

Anyway, here are the recipes!

Sarah’s recipe, from The Healthy Diva:

Simple Salmon Slice (recipe here)

Ashley’s recipe, from edible perspective:

Potato Tomato Leek Soup (recipe here)

Angela’s recipe, from Oh She Glows:

Cozy Millet Bowl with Mushroom Gravy and Kale (recipe here)

Lindsay’s recipe, from The Lean Green Bean:

Healthy Breakfast Bars (recipe here)

Jess’ recipe, from Blonde Ponytail:

No Bake Peanut Butter Protein Bars (recipe here)

They all look amazing! And not un-cookable/un-bakeable/un-non-bakeable, even for me :D Got to try them out sometime soon. (But that “soon” could be a very relative word…especially in my case, I don’t know when I’ll actually get down to action…possibly on when I’m less of a tired whine-o…not wino, you silly!)

Okay, enough rambling for one night.

Good night then!!

            - Asuma

Sunday before an Assignment Due Date + Recent Eats

Hello :)

I hope you’re all enjoying your Sunday!

Though I do wish that the weather would be a bit less gloomy than this…like even yesterday morning was 14 degrees outside! Really, is the winter almost here? :(

Anyway, I guess it’s good for me right now because it’s keeping me inside to work on my assignment.

Yes, I’m still working on it.

And yes, it’s due tomorrow morning.

Maybe I’m being a bit too optimistic here, but I know I’ll get it done and it will be good (probably…hopefully…) so I’m not actually worried about it.

Guess it’s a good thing for my mental health that I’m not too anxious these days.

Anyway, I’ve already gone to my Pilates class today, so I can just blog procrastinate work on my report now.

As soon as I finish this post. And eat some granola. And look up recipes on Pinterest. No no no, as soon as I’m done writing this, I’ll get working again. Promise.

By the way, today’s Pilates class was so full I barely had any space to place my mat. Somehow found some sort of a spot in the back to squeeze in…though I couldn’t stretch my arms fully sideways in one move. At least I didn’t have to kick my neighbours’ heads so it was all good :P

I usually don’t attend Pilates on Sundays so I’d never attended today’s instructor’s class before, but it was quite good, because I just wanted a good stretch with a little bit of core strengthening today. The other instructor focuses more on core abs work, which I usually prefer. But because I wanted to rest my muscles a bit after yesterday’s workout, this class was just what I needed.

On a completely different note, I cannot stop reading and literally laughing out LOUD at this tumblr page!!!!! Absolutely hilarious. You HAVE to go and check it out, now. (Sorry if you’ve known about it for ages and you’re like “pfffft, Asuma, you really didn’t know about it until now? Loser!”). But it’s just so funny. Usually I don’t get stuck on just one LOL-type website for a long time, but this one…needs to stay on my home page :P

Anyway, I’m going to end this post with a few photos of my most recent eats (no salad photos as they tend to look boring even if they taste amazing!!):

Blueberry Oats Chia Pudding , from Angela’s blog Oh She Glows. (Recipe here).

Leftover Cauliflower Pizza Crust pieces, with cauliflower + zucchini + asparagus sauteed with egg.

This was actually just another basic oatmeal, but I wanted to show you my new huge mug-type bowl and spoon :P

Kefir yoghurt with probiotic. I actually like this milk and honey flavour! Not overly sweet. From a local health food store. I tend to have it with granola, puffed kamut, banana, blueberries, chia, etc., rather than just on its own.

The said yoghurt, with granola + banana (I should have probably sliced the fruit but couldn’t get bothered so just smashed it in the mug with the spoon…).

Edam cheese + almond butter sandwich on wholemeal & seeds bread.

Brown rice + banana + skim milk + cottage cheese + cinnamon. Another easy breakfast creation! Probably going to be repeating this for breakfasts throughout the week with leftover rice.

Easy peasy chirashi sushi – brown rice + steamed broccoli + smoked salmon avocado with soy sauce and a cup of peppermint tea.

Yes, there was brown rice underneath all those toppings! :P

Okay then, hope you’ll all make the most out of the rest of your weekend!

                        – Asuma

Little Things That Will Make Me HAPPY

Hello people :)

It’s Friday evening and I’m writing this from the comfy corner of my bed.

I guess that’s quite uneventful and thus pretty boring for many people, but for me, it’s the healing time I need for myself.

Already gone to the gym and showered, dinner’s done too, so all I have to do now is, well, basically nothing.

Apart from the assignment that’s due Monday…yeah, fun stuff.

Anyway, the reason I’m writing about my “healing time” is because I went to see my psychiatrist for the second time yesterday, along with my first visit to the dietician over there.

My consultation with the dietician lasted for 2 whole hours!!!

It was long, but also as meaningful for me.

I won’t be going into the details here, but a lot of questions I had regarding my GI issues and diet were answered so it was very productive.

Going back to my psychiatrist. He suggested that as a homework, I make a list of small things that I can do when I’m not feeling well emotionally, that will make me happy.

These things should be:

  • Active, rather than passive.
  • Yet not too strenuous that they will make me tired.
  • Something enjoyable, and does not feel like a chore.
  • Combination of simple, cheap and easy things, with a few indulgent things.
  • Preferably something that will involve using my fingers and hands.
  • Something that can uplift my mood.

So here is my list of ten things I can think of from the top of my head:

  1. Making funny faces while listening to upbeat music.
  2. Painting my nails.
  3. Reading blogs (though this one isn’t really active).
  4. Writing a post for this blog!!!
  5. Shopping for gym clothes.
  6. Drawing tiny flowers on my body.
  7. Coffee.
  8. Writing an e-mail to Mum.
  9. Short walk in the sun.
  10. And the best for the last…yoga.

Now that’s I’ve actually done it, it’s quite therapeutic just to make a list, even if you aren’t doing any of those stuff at the moment.

Have you ever made a list like this?
What does your list include?
Wish you all a great weekend ;)
-Asuma

Photo-log

Hey hey people :)

It’s Wednesday already? What?

Why does time seem to fly by so quickly these days?

I sometimes wish there were 8 days in a week…I guess that might be quite tiring, but then I could do so much more if I could have 52 x 24 = 1248 hours more per year!!!

Just adding one day to each week.

That’s a looooot of time.

But time never waits for anyone so better get moving on.

Not that there is much to move on to and share with you all today.

Hah, could my life be so vibrant to have something to blog about everyday. That wasn’t even a question.

Though the yoga class yesterday did turn out to be pretty stellar, as N’s class is always.

I sometimes think I have a girl crush on her.

I think maybe.

Anyway, here’s a short photo-log from my yesterday…

Actually, the above dinner happened Monday night.

Beans, red capsicum, zucchini and egg white cooked lightly in olive oil and onion.

I don’t like to stand in front of the stove (not even if it’s as simple as this) on week nights because I’m usually back late from the gym, but I got to attend the yoga class in the middle of the day, so yay to earlier-than-usual dinner!!!

Tuesday’s lunch.

I got this for free in my new box of muesli :)

It was pretty good too.

The actual dinner last night was barely anything substantial, so I had this bowl after.

Almond honey cereal + Maple rice cereal + Goat milk + Cottage cheese.

Ok bye.

            – Asuma

Just Another Not-So-Manic Monday

Hello people :)

I hope you all had an alright Monday!

I had a pretty fine day, all in all – my lunch tasted even better than usual, had a well-rounded hospital clinical skills session (though I didn’t get to take history or do any exams this week…maybe next time!), even got to sneak in a brief nap before going to the gym for another Body Attack class.

And that bit of shut eye was glorious.

It’s rare that I get the time to do this, but when I do, my energy level skyrockets at the gym.

Who needs caffeine when I can nap? :P

Wish I could do this more often…but I guess I do have a life, after all, just like everybody else.

It would be kind of sad if I actually had the time to nap in the afternoon every single day anyway.

Anyway, since I had two consecutive days of intense cardio, I’m probably going to allow my body to stretch and relax a little bit in a good Yoga session.

My favourite instructor N is in today, so I’m excited!

On a different note, I had another appointment with my GP yesterday, to check the results of yet another blood test and the BMD test I got done recently.

I have no idea how many blood tests I’ve already done since the beginning of this year…it’s become even more frequent than 2011.

But I guess it’s a good thing to make sure that you have appropriate levels of everything in your blood, so no complaints here.

Vitamin-B12 and folate levels were alright, but turns out that my ferritin level was quite low.

Actually, pretty damn low.

My iron level was on a lower side, but just within the normal range, so I guess it’s just my iron store that’s low. Hmmm.

I really don’t like iron supplements in the form of tablets because of all the GI issues it causes, and when I told my GP about that, he suggested a weekly ferrum injection to start with, and then to try to increase my dietary intake of iron.

I do eat a lot of spinach, but rarely any red meat. I can’t even remember the last time I had any.

Though I occasionally have some chicken or turkey…like once a week or a fortnight?

Mum didn’t like red meat (neither did Grandma), so she rarely cooked any, so I grew up not liking it much either (it’s funny though that both my siblings love it).

I’m just going to have to find another way to sneak in more iron into my diet in other forms, I guess. Somebody out there, any clues?

Oh, and the BMD test result showed a lower bone density than the mean from my age group and sex, but apparently not too worrying if I keep exercising. Phew.

Oh well. Probably should get ready for another day now! I should pack my yoga clothes into my bag before I forget :P

Have a great day!!!

- Asuma