Ms. Marvel Project

Family food traditions

I don’t know about you, but in my family, any holiday is an excuse to cook up and eat as much food as is humanly possible. This Easter was certainly no exception to that rule.

In my family, Easter is generally a smaller holiday that only includes a small subsection of our relatively large Italian family. Last Sunday, Easter was confined to just the 4 of us: my parents, my brother and myself. I was planning to make a healthy side dish for the family (my roasted brussel sprouts) and aside from that, all I knew was that my mother would be cooking up a storm.

I was not wrong.

For 4 people, here was the list of food we had on the menu:

– A large lasagna
– Meatballs and sausages
– Stuffed artichokes
– Salad
– A full ham
– My brussel sprouts
– Homemade macaroni and cheese

And for dessert:
– Ricotta pie
– Miscellaneous pastries
– Easter candy

Needless to say, it was a LOT of food and while we made a decent dent in each dish, the leftovers were abundant. I took many of them home and they provided lunches and dinners for D and I for the majority of the week.

I definitely let myself eat whatever was looking good while I was there (the lasagna, mac and cheese, artichokes, salad and dessert), but at the same time, couldn’t help thinking about how whenever a holiday like this comes up, how difficult it can be to not let it sabotage my healthy eating progress. When all of my favorite foods are sitting right in front of me, it’s note easy to say no or even eat them in small portions. I know that holidays like this only come around once in a while so I try not to dwell and make myself feel bad about it.

It makes me wonder though, when the eventual time comes that I have my own house and am hosting holiday dinners, what kind of food will I serve? Will it be the heavy Italian food that my family knows and loves or will I try to sprinkle in some healthier food and more vegetarian options? I do think it will be the latter and I can only hope that my relatives will be a little adventurous when it comes to non-meat, slightly healthier food.

In the meantime, it’s time for me to get back into eating healthier now that all the leftovers are gone.

Happy weekend!

April 14, 2012 Posted by | Life, Project | , , | 1 Comment

Apps and goals

I hope everyone had a happy holiday and did lots of fun things with friends and family! My holiday weekend was jam-packed, and I’m starting to think forward to 2012 and all the things I want to achieve once it arrives.

The cold I had over Christmas is FINALLY starting to go away. It took its sweet time and even today my throat is a little scratchy, and I don’t have much energy. However, I have been getting gradually better over the past few days, and I’m going to be ready to throw myself into my new fitness plan once Monday hits.

I downloaded a few apps onto my iPod the other day to help me track my progress and so far, I really love them. If you too are like me and want to track everything possible in your life, maybe you’ll enjoy them as well!

1. The first app I downloaded was Way of Life, and this is my favorite of the lot. You can define as many daily habits as you want to track, for example some of mine are:

– Drinking Alcohol
– Exercising
– Taking vitamins
– Flossing
– Drinking Soda

They can be positive or negative habits and you specify what each one is, and then you begin tracking everyday whether you did or didn’t do something. If you did something good, you’ll get a green dot, and if you didn’t do it, it’ll be red. This is really going to help me see how well or not well I’m doing on things that need my attention every day.

2. Another is the type of app I’ve been trying to find for a while: Pepperplate. This allows you to enter in all your recipes and plan meals for each week. One big problem I have is getting home from work after a long, tiring day and not knowing what to do for dinner, and then succumbing to takeout. Having a meal plan will certainly help, and so will having a list readily available of all the things I know how to make.

3. The third app is nothing new to the vast majority of you, but I’ve never looked into it before because I’m just not a big reader. It’s Goodreads, and since one of my new year’s resolutions is to read more books, this will help me keep track of my progress.

I just love a good app that helps me organize my life!

If I don’t post again before tomorrow, I hope you all have a great weekend and new year and that you’re dreaming big for 2010!

young and restless

December 30, 2011 Posted by | Life, Project | , | 1 Comment

Mini vacation

My nice long, holiday-filled 5 day weekend has arrived!

Unfortunately, I’m still sick so I’m stuck on the couch for the day hoping this cold lets up enough to allow me to enjoy Christmas Eve tomorrow. I really can’t believe it’s already one day to Christmas Eve. How did that happen?

Since I’m home and not able to do much, and D still has to work, I’ve been able to spend a lot of today doing blog hops and visiting other blogs. If you’re here from a hop – welcome! I’m Lisa, a 28-year-old software engineer trying to get in shape and improve my life, documenting it all in blog form. The Ms. Marvel Project will be kicking it into high gear come the new year!

Not only are the holidays coming, but so is the end of the year. Looking back, what are you most proud of from 2011, and what would you most like to have changed?

For me, I’m most proud of taking a chance and changing jobs in August. It was a risk, and I was pretty nervous to leave the job I had been at for the past 6 years (my first real job out of college), but the risk paid off and I love my new job, new commute and the better lifestyle that has come as a result.

If I could change one thing from 2011, it would be that I would have taken better care of myself physically. I let myself get a tad out of shape and didn’t eat very well more often than not. As a result, I’ve gotten sick a few times at very inopportune moments (i.e. right now and also, here). Hence the reason for this website!

Lots of Lovin' Weekend Blog Hop

young and restless

December 23, 2011 Posted by | Life, Project | , , , | 5 Comments

7 working hours left!

Only 7 more hours of work until I get a nice long 5 day holiday weekend! Remember the days when we were kids and we got a whole week off for Christmas? Or better yet, in college when we got a whole MONTH? We certainly had it good back then.

My cold took a turn for the worse over the past 2 days, and my throat felt like it was on fire yesterday. I ended up going in to the office for a half day and then working from home for the rest of the day as well as today. So, in a way it’s almost like I got an extra 2 days of vacation, but not really because I still am working while I’m at home, not to mention the fact that I need to be resting so this cold goes away in time for Saturday’s festivities. I can’t wait to get back into the groove of working out and eating better.

Being at home and sick has given me every excuse I didn’t need to eat badly all day, and this is really not a good thing. There’s so much chocolate and holiday goodies here, and I’m not doing very well resisting  temptation. I can feel myself getting out of shape every day that goes by. I really feel that once I’m no longer sick, I’m going to throw myself into getting my body in shape and healthier. I can just picture going in for my physical in a few months and finding out my cholesterol is high again. I can’t have that happen! High cholesterol and bad hearts run in my family and I need to make that my main motivation for getting in shape. It’s not just about looking nice – it’s about so much more than that.

Anyway, all of my Christmas presents have officially arrived in the mail (I don’t think I bought a single one in a store this year!) and all but one is wrapped, so I’m basically ready to go! Christmas Eve, D and I will go to my parents house around 1 for lunch and presents amongst my immediate family. After that, all of us pack up and head out to my aunt’s house where the big crowd gathers, for lots and lots (AND LOTS) of food, presents and other festivities. We’ll stay there for the majority of the night and then D and I will come back home and probably open a few of our presents to each other.

Christmas Day, D and I go our separate ways so we can each celebrate with our individual immediate families. I will go back to my parents’ house where we open all the presents from Santa and then have our traditional Christmas turkey later that afternoon when my aunt and uncle come over to visit.

It’s a whirlwind and Christmas Eve is really the biggest day for us. I’m excited, but I hope this cold is gone by then so I can fully enjoy myself!

Well, back to finishing up my workday, watching some daytime TV and drinking my emergen-C!

How are you spending these last few days before the holidays hit?

December 22, 2011 Posted by | Life, Project | , | 1 Comment