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Hummus Magic

Ok, here’s my story about hummus. I hate beans. Lima beans, refried beans, garbanzo beans, and whatever beans are used for baked beans. Yuck. All of it. Note it’s not a flavor issue, it’s a texture thing. They are grainy. Like eating sand. I love green beans and I like peas. I can tolerate black beans if they are mixed in something, and even then I’m like the Princess and the Bean because my palate just finds the grit.

So, hummus. I always wanted to like hummus. But even pulverized, those damn chickpeas were still grainy. Every now and then I would order a vegetarian sandwich with hummus as a spread, thinking I could just ignore the beach inside, but nope. Ick.

Until last week.

I went to #Myapapaya. For some reason I was craving hummus. I don’t know what’s in chickpeas that I was actually craving, but I really wanted it. I got a salad (or bowl) with hummus, falafel, eggplant, and some kind of pickled something else. It was one of the most amazing things I have eaten for lunch in forever. The hummus was thin, lining the bottom of the bowl, with a heavy drizzle of olive oil on top. It was like eating velvet. The falafel were crispy and yes, there was a little grit there, but I’ve always been able to get past the grit when it’s fried. The other flavors complemented everything. I straight up wanted to lick the bowl, but I was on a business lunch, so I felt that would be frowned upon. I texted my sister to tell her I had taken ill; I had ordered hummus voluntarily and I liked it.

Today, the craving hit again. I originally planned to drive straight to Myapapaya but I decided to try to save a buck, go home and make my own.

I’m a good cook. Just last night Jerry ordered dinner out and complained about it and to my full enjoyment proceeded to go on about how spoiled he is by my cooking. But today, the hummus magic wasn’t there.

First I skinned a can of chickpeas. Fortunately my bestie was available to yack on the phone, so those 23 minutes flew by (I’ve learned that the hummus peeling gets faster with experience). Then I busted out the Vitamix, followed a recipe, and blended away. Then tragedy struck. I took off the lid, did something… I don’t know what… then put the tamper stick in and put the lid on (wrong order). As a result, the Vitamix ate the tamper stick.

I proceeded to push the hummus through a strainer because I had just spent 20 minutes peeling grit beans. I’m thankful they were big chunks of plastic and I’m the only one who is going to eat this dip, so I risked the plastic. Blender cleaned, hummus back in, I added too much liquid and made a hummus milkshake. Yes, I do like it thin (I think that’s Lebanese style?) but the end result was a little too thin. It was however, grit free. Yaaasssss!

Vitamix Demolished Tamper Stick

I still need a new recipe. I learned that I don’t really like tahini. The recipe I used had too much. It also needed more lemon and more garlic. It’s not awful, and I put it in the refrigerator because I believe it will firm up overnight. We shall see.

I’m secretly hoping I get to go back to Myapapaya on Sunday before going to see #MiamiCityBallet at #BrowardCenter. Get my hummus fix. So save me my loyal readers. Hit me with your best hummus recipes.

Lymphatic Drainage Special

I know technically the calendar says 2018, but I’m living like it’s already 2019! Have you already flipped the calendar? Are you planning and plotting for a better year, a better you?  So many of you are planning detoxes and cleanses to rid your bodies of all the holiday fun and to jump start yourself into better health. To support you, I’m offering a  special on my Lymphatic Drainage Massage.  Now through January 31 you can receive two, 60-minute Lymphatic Drainage Massages for $140.00 (SAVE $20)**.  This package is great if you’re planning a 30 day cleanse: schedule your first treatment half way through and your second treatment at the end of your program. 

How can Lymphatic Drainage Massage help? The purpose of lymphatic drainage is to support your systems and organs to aid with cleansing and regenerating tissue. Most importantly, it promotes balance of chemistry. It stimulates movement of lymph, encouraging formation of lymphocytes (white blood cells). In areas of damaged tissue, it helps remove waste more rapidly from around the inflamed tissue, sending it back to the lymphatic system for quicker healing. 

Lymphatic Drainage Massage is a very light pressure massage; while is is not directly a muscle release technique it is very therapeutic and relaxing.

** This special is valid for my Wilton Manors location only, but if you are interested in mobile services, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

 

Manual Lymphatic Drainage – Part Three – Self Care

As promised, here are some tips for YOU to help YOU. Keep your lymph flowing in between your Manual Lymphatic Drainage sessions with some easy self care tips:

  1.  Exercise: Move around! You don’t have to kill yourself with burpees or run a marathon. I’m a fan of jumping jacks, but walking works (pump those arms!), and the new trends of rebounding and even just bouncing on a fitness ball can help.
  2. Dry Brushing: A superficial technique, dry brushing can stimulate your lymphatic system, aid with cellulite reduction, and slough off dead skin cells. It’s not very comfortable – I have to psyche myself up to do it – or perhaps I need a slightly softer brush. Here’s a little video demo selected because it is short, to the point, and I found that Margie made me smile. Remember: always dry brush towards the heart!
  3. Stay Hydrated: This is hands down the most important self care tip. Every system in your body works better when you drink water. So you just need to break down and do it. Here’s a list of hydration apps to help remind you (did you know once you’re feeling thirsty you’re already dehydrated?). I’m guilty of not drinking enough water too, so if you have a clever way to remember to hydrate, please share!
  4. Wash those fruits and veggies: This falls under the realm of paying attention to the environmental toxins around you. We are exposed to many environmental toxins that are out of our control, but be sure to always wash your fruits and veggies. If you’re really diving deep into healthier, cleaner living, please visit my Lemongrass Spa Products page. Lemongrass Spa’s mission is to provide natural products that are clean and made fresh, right here at home in America. The family skin care products range from cosmetics (I adore their lipsticks – no chemical taste and amazing pigment!) to lotions, scrubs, soaps, hair care, and essential oils.

Ready to try our Manual Lymphatic Drainage? During the month of September you may try our full body Lymphatic Drainage Massage for the special rate of $40 for a 60 minute treatment. May not be combined with any other offers; additional charge applies for mobile massage.

Manual Lymphatic Drainage

Warning – For Cat Guardians Only

Ted, innocently snuggling in my lap as I write this blog

 

Because I don’t have ENOUGH to do, my little darlings have been creating more work for me. Or, perhaps they are trying to inspire me to write more blogs. If that’s the case, kudos to you cats. Kudos to you.

I had a “flurry” of guests and activity at my home in November and December and then Christmas decorations which require moving furniture (guests also require furniture moving) and then the partial removal of Christmas decorations (don’t judge me – I have garage reorganizing to do to get those bins back in place – it’s gonna happen. Before Valentine’s Day. I swear.).  I have no idea if this is the WHY because honestly my cats appeared relatively unaffected by the activity. Cecilia waddled from my office / guest room into the master bedroom. Duke continued his role as protector and “next to” cat. Ted was in 7th Heaven with all the extra attention. He’s SUCH an attention whore. He will be up in anyone and everyone’s business 24-7 because he LOVES it. If anyone would be stressed I think it would be Duke because there were more people to protect me from. He was tired, I could see a little shift. But he’s back to his kind-of normal self, although he’s walking around the house howling right now. I have no idea what he’s howling about. ???

Random thought: My favorite and oldest mug, the first mug I ever owned as a single girl out on my own says, “Ask me about the cute thing my cat did because I’ll tell you anyway.” I’m using that mug RIGHT NOW.

Anyway, during this time, after everyone had left, my little Trouble Bubble (Ted) decided not to use the litter box anymore. At all. Just quit. Fortunately he used the wee-wee pads I put under the boxes for protection and he wasn’t peeing all over the house (good job Ted). I deep cleaned the boxes. He didn’t care. I did extensive research. Extensive litter box monitoring at all hours. Determined it was “litter box aversion.” I’ve had the same two boxes and same litter for years. YEARS. By the way, I love the Internet because you think you’re a really bad mom and then you Google these things (I also love that “Google” is now like Vaseline or Kleenex) and see all of the people who have the same problems you do. It’s like web therapy.

Anyway, I pulled out a third box, a standard box with low sides. The two regular boxes are clear storage bins. They easily hop in, do their thing and hop out. Cecilia stands up as she pees so high sides are necessary (go ahead, I DARE you to Google this – it’s a thing). The storage boxes were a reasonable, cost effective option and they took to it right away. YEARS AGO. So anyway (I should re-name this blog “Anyway”) they ALL started using the ONE low sided box. Apparently all species will opt for convenience vs any level of effort.  Because they ALL used one box, Ted didn’t like that either, and I refused to set an alarm for 3:00am to clean out the litter box for the midnight eliminators. So, to my dismay, he still didn’t use the boxes (rather it was hit and miss depending on the timing of when the other two used the ONE box).

I researched other litter boxes. Found the NVR Miss. Looked interesting. Was going to buy it. Cost like $30. No. no no no no. Not happening. Do you know how many shoes I can buy at DSW for $30? I mean with my coupons and sales, etc (at least ONE pair, ok?)? So I broke out my rotary drill and cut a hole in the side of one of the storage bins for easy (aka lazy cat) access. Success. Now there are TWO boxes they will use and I’m on DAY 2 of no accidents. I’m giving it one more day, then will cut into box #3. Oh, the drama.

In other non-cat news: Today is my grandparents’ 70th wedding anniversary. Seventy years. I can’t equate that to anything. I think it’s amazing. They have good stories – even the “bad” stories are good. So many stories. I love them dearly.

Cheers, love, and kitty cat purrs

Erin

The Aftermath of Irma – Part Two – FOOD

Another realization post hurricane was that I could have been more creative with my food planning. I had apocalypse food. Like a jar of peaches. Stew-like soup that COULD be eaten cold if necessary. Pretzels. Peanut butter and bread. Instant mashed potatoes. Tuna. Pasta. We would have survived, but I didn’t really have MEALS. Since we never lost power it was a little deceptive because we felt like things should be normal.

Hubster: “So what’s for dinner?”

Me: ” A jar of peaches??”

I didn’t bother stocking up on meats because if we lost power (ie the refrigerator) I would have had a limited time to grill everything (even if it was stored in a cooler). I’m also not a camper. So that kind of eating / meal prep is no where on my radar. My husband was in the jungle in Vietnam (army, front lines, sleeping in the rain, strapping laces up his legs to keep the leaches off of him, war experience). So he thinks we need a sh*t load of dehydrated meal packs… not a bad idea but I don’t really want to live on them for weeks if I don’t have to. Once power was restored in some areas, but not others, there were two lines on the streets: 1) Gas; 2) McDonalds. I kid you not. Again, if faced with death I would eat it, but it’s not at the top of my preferred dining list (#FirstWorldProblems). So I turned to Google for future hurricane food planning.  Here’s a few interesting ideas I came across:

  • Hard boiled eggs. I actually did think of this, but hadn’t purchased extra eggs. Next time I will. Once boiled, with shells on, hard boiled eggs can stay at room temperature.
  • Bacon. Pre-cook it and it can also stay at room temperature.
  • Hard, cured meats and room temperature friendly cheeses (I found a whole blog on backpacking with cheese…).
  • Container of lemon juice – for a little added flavor
  • Roasted garlic – for added flavor (to rice, vinaigrette, those instant mashed potatoes!)
  • Jarred chutneys and jams with crackers (I love me some chutney!)
  • Jars of pickled vegetables: can be eaten on their own or added to rice or pasta.
  • Instant coffee and dried creamer. Sometimes you need coffee. Even bad coffee.
  • Fresh fruit. You will crave freshness, so have them on hand. Apples, oranges, banana.
  • Tortillas and jarred salsa.
  • Granola and granola bars.
  • Cereal (ie dried bits of cardboard – I really dislike cereal but would eat it if faced with starvation).
  • Beans (also blech – it’s a texture thing – but if I was staring death in the face, I’d eat beans).
  • Drinks. I had plenty of water, which is the most important, but we could have used some Gatorade or other beverages with a little flavor for a treat.

What did I miss on my list? Share your hurricane meal tricks!