Sunday, September 5, 2010

August Wrap Up and Lunch Inspiration

First, the wrap up: Boy, has August been a sucky month for me. I just want to forget the whole thing. The ureter stent is bugging me so much I actually have been taking Norco at night the last few days. It is being removed on Wednesday finally, and, I think once it's gone, my attitude will be a lot better. I'm finding it really hard to be positive when I'm feeling like such utter crap. All month I've been trying to talk myself into giving it the old college try and lose a few pounds, but instead I resorted to fast food and junk food and all manner of horrid eating habits. It's a miracle I am still holding steady at 218. My August goals weren't a total wash though. No, I didn't do any exercise, but that was mainly because of the stent. I did meet my water intake goal -- I think I only missed it three or four days. And I did avoid fast food for breakfast (I went for dinner instead. ugh.).

So, on to September. This month has started out with a nice little NSV. I took myself to Old Navy yesterday and got a new pair of jeans, size 18. This is huge for me because I haven't bought a new pair of jeans in three years -- yes, since before banding! I spent the majority of the last two years in maternity clothes, and those just don't count. So, yeah, an 18. The last new pair of jeans I bought back in 2007 was a 24. Three sizes down! Also, it's thrilling to be able to shop somewhere other than Lane Bryant.

Anyway, on to my lunch inspiration...

Lunch has always been my toughest meal. At work, lunch comes a little too early, so I'm often not quite "loosened up" for the day yet. Finding something that my band will tolerate can be challenging. I'm also a bit picky -- no tuna, no canned chicken or salmon, no sandwiches. Lunch is a constant creative challenge.

In the past I've usually resorted to soup or meat/cheese rollups, but this gets a little boring after awhile.Or I try to eat a Lean Cuisine, only to get stuck on the rice or past in it. Also, with hubs officially on the weight loss bandwagon (he's lost 15 so far!), I mean to start cooking more and preparing healthier snacks. We both want to set good examples for the kids, especially the tater tot, as she's now eating more of what we eat.

Today, the internet provided me with a little inspiration: Bento boxes.

Bento boxes! They're perfect. Small amount of food. Variety. No heating necessary, in theory. Infinite possibilities. And cute carrying case to boot. This is the one that originally got my attention:
Who wouldn't be excited about lunch with this little number? Happy bunnies? Come on! Here is another cute one:
Both of these are by a company called Kotobuki and are available at Amazon. (Hubs just informed me that I will not be spending $32 on a lunch box. We'll see.)

Getting past the cute wrapping... I found a few blogs and sites dedicated to bento lunching. I don't think I would get all crazy making rice ball faces and such, but the focus on variety and simplicity really got me excited. For example, a simple salad of shredded carrot, parsley, and sesame sounds divine. Black bean burgers? Sure! How about a microwave cheese and parsley omelet? If I'm feeling adventurous, there is plenty out there to try. And if I'm keeping it real, well then, I think cheese, crackers, fruit, and a few slices of turkey would probably do the trick. Not that I need a fancy little box to do that -- I get it, I do. I think what appeals to me here is the variety involved in a relatively small quantity of food. It's not a big ol' plate of ravioli. Instead, it's maybe 3 ravioli, a few olives, a meatball, and some greens with vinegar and oil. It's like grabbing a bit of this and a bit of that -- whatever I can find in the fridge.

I know this is nothing new or earth-shattering. But you know how sometimes you can know a thing, but not have it completely sink in until someone explains it to you an entirely different way? A lightbulb moment. That is how I'm feeling about bento lunching.

LatinConFusion has lots of low cal bentos -- lots of good looking lunches too. I will be consulting this blog often. Just Bento has a ton of recipes and bento ideas. And Lunch in a Box has links to tons of other bento blogs and lots of cooking and packing tips.

So that's my story for today. I promise to take pics of my new lunching adventures!


blither blather said...

cool posting! i hope you'll take some pics of your "real" lunches so we can enjoy them too! a fascinating idea...!

Beth said...

I nominated you for an award!!!
XOXO - beth

Mary H. said...

These are adorable! I've seen some other bento box style stuff going on! I'm all about cute japanese style stuff LOL