Well, I guess I won't be going out to eat much for the next month.  On a recommendation from the previously mentioned nutritionist, I am cutting out even more food from my diet for a month.  Gone already are the meat, dairy, wheat, sugar, alcohol.  Wait a minute, it would be easier to list what I can eat.  Granny smith apples, berries, lemon, lime, quinoa, buckwheat, millet, brown rice, almond milk, nuts, seeds, and any veggies I want.  I know what you're thinking, and I wish I wasn't me too.

So I took my son to my favorite vegetarian/vegan restaurant, which is my equivalent of going to a steakhouse.  To my great disappointment, everything on the menu that was wheat free had fruit or dairy, everything without dairy had  wheat.  The soy milk and almond milk both had sugar.  AARRGGHH!  If I can't make it here, I can't make it anywhere.  At least my son enjoyed the pinball machine.

The one thing that is keeping me going thru all of this is a dear friend who suffers from chemical sensitivity.  At one point, her body became so toxic that she could only eat 4 things.  One of them was parsnips.  How many people in America even know what a parsnip is?  I will confess that I never knew what a parsnip was until my first trip to England, so don't be embarrassed.  They don't eat many vegetables over there, but the parsnip happens to be one of them.  And that's not a knock on England, it's one of my favorite places. (If your curiosity is killing you about the parsnips, they look kind of like cream colored carrots.  Quite good roasted).

Anyway, this friend of mine has a much more limited diet than I do, and has had to deal with it for a much longer period of time.  She is teaching me about new things I can eat, and she also has a very positive attitude.  The last time we were at a restaurant together, I commented on how difficult it must be for her to eat out.  She said, "It's as difficult as I choose to make it."  And she's completely right.  In fact, I could apply that logic to a lot of things in my life.  My friend chooses to focus on the things she can eat, instead of what she can't.

So, needless to say, I am eating in a way I never thought I would.  For breakfast yesterday, I had brown rice, steamed bok choy, broccoli, and a fried egg mixed together.  A month ago, I never would have thought of eating that for breakfast.  And a month ago, I would've thought it sounded pretty disgusting.  Today, it was delicious.

I am also blessed to have a friend from Taiwan, who was kind enough to show me around the asian grocery store the other day.  It's amazing how much more appealing (and gross) things become when you actually know what they are.  It's also strange to be buying food from China, when I won't even buy Chinese toys for my son.  No thanks - lead paint, but yes please - whatever toxins might be on the vegetables.  What is the saying, what doesn't kill us makes us stronger?  I hope that applies to my stomache and intestines too.

My friend and I  came home from the store and made sushi, several kinds of tofu, and egg pancakes with green onion and radish.  I watched her make the sushi, and she made it look so easy.  When I tried it myself for the next meal, it was kind of like a sushi vegetable blob.  I couldn't even cut it, so we ate it like a burrito!  Like anything, I'm sure it gets easier with practice.

So I find myself quite literally trying to think outside the box for meals.  Getting ready for work today has been a challenge.  It's hard to pack food for three days without a cooler.  I'll let you know how that goes in tomorrow's post.

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