I have come to realize that the general overall mood of my family is intrinsically tied to my mood - this was not extra pressure that I needed, but after being a Mom of almost 14 years I have noticed that if I am stressed out, my kids tend to be stressed out, which then stresses out the Weekend Chef.
If I am happy and singing Christmas songs and laughing, then my kids tend to be carefree and spirit filled as well. On the other hand, if I am worn out and stomping around the kitchen (who me ??) then the general mood in the entire house is down and out.
Like I said, not extra pressure that I really needed, but it has made me realize that taking care of my family also requires me to take care of myself.
Like a lot of other Mom's, I have had to work hard and learn to take care of myself. The to do lists is never ending - is doing the craft for the class party more important or going for a walk with my girlfriends?
Do I dare let the laundry pile up for yet another day, so I can go take in an art class?
Will they survive dinner with dad cooking if I leave for the night?
I have had years where I have picked the Room Mom of the Year approach, and in taking care of everyone else have not paid attention to the care and well being of myself - these time left me empty and drained. When I am empty and drained, so are my kids.
What fills each of us up is different:
One of my friends loves to go to the movies and she will do so during the day when the kids are at school.
Some love a glass wine with friends while chatting about their favorite book.
For others there is shopping or getting a pedicure.
For me, I have to be creative in some way to be happy, and
I have to be outside and exercising.
I ran my first road race in 7th or 8th grade (my Mom reads this blog so she probably remembers what year). It was three miles, I won first place in my age group (there was not much competition) and a trophy and a turkey! I have been running, biking, skiing, kayaking, walking, hiking ever since.
I have weighed almost the same thing for the last 15 years or so (minus periods of pregnancy) but have gained a few pounds lately. I can't decide if it is age, from all of the Christmas treats, or the fact that my body is finally absorbing everything I eat so that my days of eating like a pig and then passing it all through unabsorbed in under two hours is over.
Nevertheless the cause, while poking my new stomach pouch while looking at my profile in the mirror, I asked the Weekend Chef the loaded dreaded question "would you still love me if I gained five pounds?"
"Of course," was the quick response (thank goodness since I had).
But I could not stop there so "What about ten pounds?"
"Dah," he replied back.
"Well then what about twenty pounds?"
"Actually, I am not sure."
"What do you mean?" I insisted as I started to contemplate the marital division of property in my head. .
"Well being healthy and exercising has always been such a big part of you, that you just would not be who you are if you started eating a bunch of junk and stopped being active."
Okay, so maybe he has a point.
And my point - that I am not me without being outside and being active. And if I am not me, then I am not a good Mom, wife, sister, friend.
So, why have I taken you down this path of inspiration.
First, I really do hope that everyone who reads this takes some time to take care of themselves. It sounds so cliche but is so important.
This gluten free lifestyle can be a little crazy at times, so while you are making sure to take care of what you and whoever else you love is eating, be sure you are also taking time to be you.
Secondly, I have to give a big shot out (if the President can use the term, then so can I) to Savory Moment in Redmond because this business has given me back a little bit of my life by giving me a little bit of time out of the kitchen.
Savory Moment in Redmond WA provides top of the line Chef prepared meals that are frozen and available for pickup. All you have to do is thaw them, warm or complete cooking in your oven and serve.
The owner contacted me about a year ago because, after a lot of inquiries, they were thinking of adding some gluten free options.
They have now expanded their business to include an extensive list of gluten free items. This month's gluten free menu includes asian meatloaf, bourbon chicken, grilled pork tenderloin with pomegranate pinot demi, chicken fingers, gluten free macaroni and cheese. Are you salivating yet? Click here to view the complete menu.
I love not only the fact that the food is gluten free, but it is also tasty. This is Julia Robert's come to the Eastside as Kay the owner is a Cordon Blue trained Chef.
And the meals are healthy meals just like you'd prepare at home - no mass production line and loads of preservatives. They are just wonderful, Chef prepared meals that are frozen and ready for you to take home, thaw and warm.
So on those nights when I have been running around like a maniac from one kid activity to the next and I just do not have it in me to cook a meal, instead of serving a bowl of GF cereal we can have a healthy square, gluten free meal of grilled teriyaki chicken with a side of risotto.
Even better, Savory Moment has been adding additional gluten free products to their store such as the sought-after and hard-to-find Udi's bread, Lucy cookies, Bavaria Mills frozen pie crusts, Jules GF flour, Kinnickinnic's donuts.
Did I mention they are also selling beautiful Gluten Free decorated cakes for the Holiday Season?.
Savory Moment also honors the Microsoft Prime card and delivers.
Do I need to say more?
Do yourself a favor this season, and head over to Savory Moment. I will be serving their prime rib for dinner Christmas Eve.
Prime Rib DinnerFeaturing Harris Ranch all natural 4 diamond choice Angus boneless prime rib roast, Hazelnut mashed potatoes, Green beans with caramelized pearl onions and apple wood smoked bacon
Maple Glazed Pork Loin Dinner
All natural pork loin slowly roasted with a maple mustard glaze Au gratin potatoes Green beans with caramelized pearl onions and apple wood smoked baconFabulous Gluten Free holiday cookie dough is also available
Chef Terry Kaczmarek will carve Prime Rib and Maple Pork Loin samples from 11:30-3:00 on Saturday, December 19th
Saturday is your final day to order your holiday dinner so don't miss this opportunity to taste our delicious entrees if you still need to make up your mind.
Open House this Saturday from 11:00 - 6:00.
Gluten Free Samples
Snicker doodles, Thumb prints, Snowballs, Chocolate Chip Cookies, Peanut Butter Kisses
Gluten and Dairy free Chocolate Cake and Lemon and Raspberry Cake,
Peppermint Holiday Cake
Sweet Potato Casserole & Au Gratin Potatoes
Gluten Free Gingerbread House Kits are available to purchase - limited quantity
No, I have absolutely no financial interest in this company.