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Days 20-25: Chaos

July 30, 2010

I started out this week at my annual big camp event with good intentions, but no declarations of what I would do or not do. I told myself I would do my best. But food blogging was truly the last of my concerns as I ran a 200-person camp and worked long, intense days and nights. Here is a smattering of some of the things I ate this week.

Surprisingly, the food was for the most part quite high quality and delicious. Head and shoulders above most “camp food.” The only problem was that there was no choice. Here is the dinner entree. You can take it, or a vegetarian option. End of story. Which meant I ate pretty much anything they put in front of me.

pesto chicken & vegies

The lunches were an unfortunate box lunch most days. Yucky sandwiches with American cheese and enormous white rolls. But I was working hard and people, I was starving.

I didn’t eat the Rice Krispie treats. However, I did eat some of the desserts in the main dining room. For better or for worse. I didn’t photograph any of those – by that time I was too rushed and crazy, but the first night, a group went out for dinner and I had some key lime pie.

key lime pie. mmmmmm.

Luckily, there were good salads at every dinner.

salad with orange and grapefruit

Most of these photos were taken in the first few days. Then I just got completely overwhelmed.

I had some good grab-and-go snacks…

and some not-so-good. (this is a mini)

After the first two days, it was just pure craziness. Then yesterday when it was all over I actually REALIZED that I’d stopped taking pictures (there had been no internet so I couldn’t post). And then something happened. I won’t say it was a Bad Thing. But I learned something.

This is what happened. The event was over. I was driving home. I felt “hungry.” I put that in quotes because it was the CRAZY hunger, not a stomach hunger. (it was after I’d eaten lunch already) I thought, “Well, I’m off-camera.” Meaning, I had already been not taking photos for 2-3 days and I knew my intention was to resume today at home.

I drove to a store. Parked. Cruised the aisles. Found a box of shortbread finger cookies (8 cookies in package). Literally felt I was hiding from a surveillance camera (my own). Got in car. Ate all the cookies. Did not take any photos.

Whoooooooooooooooooo. (deep breath)

I’m not gonna beat myself up. Nor am I gonna justify it. It is just what happened. But it taught me very very clearly what this blog has done for me. Because I used to live ALL MY DAYS “off camera.”

This morning, I got my cup of coffee. Took picture. It was so soothing and calming, I cannot even tell you. Had my simple breakfast of two hardboiled eggs. Again, it felt so good to be “back.” Those pictures will be up tomorrow, with the rest of today’s food.

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From → Food

5 Comments
  1. The food there looks good! And I LOVE rice krispies treats. I should make some…
    It’s to be expected that if you’re that crazy and hard working, you wont have time to photo everything. It’s not like that’s your normal life. Ill be glad to have something tasty to read in the mornings again. 🙂

  2. Definitely take some time to ask yourself WHY you ate those cookies. It’s NOT to beat yourself up…but there are clearly some emotional reasons as to why you ate them.

    Many people eat “right” when they are in full view of other people. But get them home alone, and they eat all the “bad” stuff they really wanted to eat in the first place. Or because they get some secret satisfaction of eating those ‘guilty’ foods. Essentially, what it often called closet eaters.

    Now this is not to say you are a closet eater — but like you said in your post, that you used to live all your days off camera. So though you have come a LONG WAY, it’s completely normal for some of those old feelings or reactions to come back. So yes, do not beat yourself up. But DO take a moment or so to try to see what it was that got you back into that place (even if it was temporary). So next time you can be just a bit more aware of it.

    And this journey of yours is just that. A journey. Life in itself is a journey. Do your best, but realize that every day cannot be perfect (in life or with food), and if you eat ‘bad’ that’s okay. You can only do what you can do sometimes….and just relax and know that one box of cookies, or one bad eating day, or one ‘off’ week does not set the tone for your life.

    Living fully, loving fully (including loving yourself), being true and honest with others (including yourself) and doing the best you can is all anyone can ask for.

  3. I’m reading the book “Savor: Mindful Eating, Mindful Life,” and it talks about “habit energy.” You just had an incredibly intense week, so maybe that old “habit energy” took over on the way home? Anyway, like you said, it happened (and to which of us hasn’t stuff like that happened?), but now you’re back and in control of what you do next.

    Co-author Thich Nhat Hanh talks about certain things being a “bell of mindfulness,” such as the ringing of the telephone being used to remind ourselves to be mindful. I’m beginning to see taking the food photos as a “bell of mindfulness,” a reminder to SLOW DOWN (the habit energy I want to cultivate) and be fully present and appreciative of the food. (You can tell I’m still really struggling with this, with all the half-eaten pictures on my blog.) And I still long a little bit for some “off camera” eating.

    • Pubsgal, I LOVED this comment. Thank you so much. First, I’m going to go and buy that book right now. YES, the “habit energy” totally took over. And today I noticed that I kept “forgetting” to take the photos because my photo-mindful energy had certainly weakened this week.

      I agree 100% that taking the photos acted as a total bell of mindfulness for me. I am a true believer now, and I see what happens when I took that bell away.

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