Friday, March 26, 2021

Eating All the Stuff

“Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma - which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.”

--Steve Jobs

Two years ago, I started my weight loss journey with WW (formerly known as Weight Watchers) with these goals in mind:

Walk without pain in my knees and hips

Fit in an airline seat without a seatbelt extender 

Fit in any seat

Not be over the weight limit for activities, outdoor chairs, inexpensive treadmills, etc.

No high blood pressure medication needed

Buy clothes in any store

Feel confident in my body

Lose 130 pounds

During this crazy past year, I reached a weight-loss total of -84 pounds. And then, I started to struggle. My weight had reached the lowest it had been in 30-plus years, which was unknown territory for me and a little scary because I didn’t quite know how to feel about myself. Also, I got tired of trying to adjust every recipe to be more WW point-friendly. (Sometimes you just want a cookie to be a cookie!) But, most of all, I was tired of feeling good or bad about myself based on what the scale said or how many points I did or didn’t eat in a day.

Old habits started to return. Instead of only eating a cookie or two, I was eating the whole box. A couple of scoops of ice cream became the whole container. Most of all, I was back to mindless eating—putting food in my mouth without actually tasting it or enjoying it, and doing it a fast as I could so I wouldn’t think about it. The pounds started to return and I started to panic. I’d watched many WW people I admired on social media gain back all the weight they lost…and then some. It reminded me that 95 percent of people who lose weight gain it back. That’s always been my story in the past.

There has to be a better way!

I have accomplished all my goals except for one. My weight.

Do I have to reach a certain number on the scale to be successful in my wellness journey?

Is it possible this is where my body is meant to be? 

About 6 months ago, I remembered the concept of intuitive eating. The focus is on letting your body eat what it wants, and learning to trust that it will tell you what it needs. I’d first heard of this idea back in the 1980s through the writings of Geneen Roth, primarily her book Breaking Free from Emotional Eating and When You Eat at the Refrigerator, Pull Up a Chair. I also recently came across Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch, and The F*ck It Diet by Caroline Dooner. 

The key components to intuitive eating are listening to what your body wants and no food is off-limits. When I first started eating this way, I was binging. It was like my body was saying, “So, I can have anything I want? Prove it!”

Still, I continued to allow myself to eat what I wanted. Sweets after dinner…or any time, and anything off the take-out menu. I kept jars full of chocolates, cookies in the pantry, and the freezer well-stocked with ice cream. 

Over time, I noticed I was happy with just a small bowl of ice cream. Or 2-3 cookies. Or 2-4 pieces of chocolate. Not all of the above all the time

One evening, as I was watching TV, my tummy full and happy after dinner, I didn’t even think of eating anything sweet. The thought didn’t enter my mind until it was almost bedtime! No trying to talk myself out of it. I didn’t have to! Wow.

I’ve also stopped gaining weight. As of today, I’ve regained 15-20 pounds from my lowest weight, and I’m okay with that. I’ve decided to write my own well-being story. I would like to drop about 10 pounds, and then stay put. But I’m not going to count points or calories. No food is off-limits. I actually believe as the weather gets warmer, and I’m more active and inclined to eat fruits and veg, some of the weight I’ve gained will drop off naturally. 

Let me say, I’m grateful to WW for helping me get this far. I don’t know if I could have lost this much weight without the program. Most of all, the best gift I received during these past 2 years is the knowledge that self-care is not selfish. It’s necessary for achieving any other goals in life.

Now, speaking of goals, my new ones are:

Keep walking—and doing 5Ks—because I like it! 

Practice yoga twice a week

Find ways to add other movements into my life—golf, hiking, etc.

Trust my body to tell me what it needs.

Pay attention to how my body feels about certain foods

No food is off-limits


Enjoy life!

If you’d like to follow along with me while I blaze my new path, you can find me on Instagram and Facebook. I promise to be real with you, no matter what happens. Plus, I’ll post longer updates here from time to time, along with more tasty recipes!

“Part of the secret of success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside.”

--Mark Twain 

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Crustless Coconut Custard Pie

If you're looking for a dessert that is both easy and delicious, this crustless coconut custard pie is just the ticket. It's adapted from one I found in Marion Cunningham's book Learning to Cook, which was published in 1999.

Let me introduce you to Marion Cunningham, one of the women who helped Americans cook better.  A life-long resident of California, she went from homemaker to cookbook author and columnist. She is perhaps best known for updating the iconic The Fannie Farmer Cookbook in the 1970s. 

However, first and foremost, Marion Cunningham was a teacher. She made the most clueless cook feel capable of creating a meal to feed themselves, family, and friends. Learning to Cook provides step-by-step instructions so there is no question as to how a dish should be made. Her Cooking with Children book opened the door to life-long cooking. And all of her cookbooks featured ingredients that can be found in any supermarket. 

In the introduction of Learning to Cook, she told about the experience of teaching Saturday cooking classes to beginners. “Every time we cooked, we sat down around my dining-room table and looked at the results of our lessons. Cooking in my kitchen, then enjoying each other’s company over a home-cooked meal, helped introduce (or re-introduce) these adult beginners to the social pleasures of cooking and eating together, pleasures that are often missing in busy lives. They tell me how they learned that going home at the end of the day, after busy work pressures, to a quiet time of cooking can be the best kind of therapy. That feeling is one of the best gifts that cooking at home can give us, and I hope that all of you using these recipe and sitting down to enjoy a meal with your friends, family, or even alone will find the same kind of satisfaction.” 

The ingredients for this Crustless Coconut Custard Pie are quickly whizzed together in a food processor. Serve it dusted with confectioner's sugar and toasted coconut on top, as I have here, or with some whipped cream and berries on the side. 

Yield: 6 to 8
Author: Linda Ditch
Crustless Coconut Custard Pie

Crustless Coconut Custard Pie

This recipe was adapted from one found in Learning to Cook with Marion Cunningham. A creamy, refreshing dessert for the perfect ending to any meal.


  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose white flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 cup unsweetened or sweetened packaged coconut, plus more for garnish
  • Powdered sugar, for garnish


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the milk, flour, baking powder, salt, eggs, sugar, and vanilla into a food processor and whiz for three minutes. Add the 1 cup coconut and whiz again for 3 seconds.
  2. Pour the mixture into a 9-inch pie pan and bake in the oven for 40 minutes. Check to see if the pie is done by sticking a sharp knife into the center. If it comes out clean, it’s done. If not, bake for an additional 5 minutes and check again. You want there to be a slight wobble when you remove it from the oven. It will firm up as it cools.
  3. Serve at room temperature or cold, cut into wedges. Dust with powdered sugar and sprinkle with toasted coconut if desired. Also nice served with whipped cream and/or fresh fruit.
  4. To toast coconut, sprinkle 1/4 cup coconut onto a baking sheet. Place in the oven and bake until toasted, about 3-5 minutes. Keep an eye on it, since the coconut can burn quickly!
Created using The Recipes Generator

Thursday, March 4, 2021

Ginger-Lime Marinade


No matter the temperature outside, when March arrives, I’m ready for spring. My thoughts automatically turn to flower gardens, fresh vegetables, and grilling.

This ginger-lime marinade is easy to assemble and gives either chicken or pork a satisfying Asian-citrus flavor. Since my grill is stored in the shed, I broiled this chicken breast. Next time, I’ll break out my grill pan until warmer weather lets me move to outside cooking.

Yield: 4
Author: Linda Ditch
Ginger-Lime Marinade

Ginger-Lime Marinade

An easy to assemble marinade that gives either chicken or pork a satisfying Asian-citrus flavor.


  • 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • Zest of two limes
  • 2 teaspoons dried ginger
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried coriander
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts or pork chops


  1. Place all the marinade ingredients into a gallon zipper bag or a baking dish large enough to hold the meat of choice. Whisk together until combined. Add the meat, making sure each piece is coated.
  2. Place in the refrigerator and marinate for at least 4 hours, turning the meat over halfway through to make sure it is evenly coated in the marinade. When ready, cook the meat either by grilling, in a skillet, or under a broiler.
Created using The Recipes Generator