Stress Central

There are two ways of dealing with stress, food-wise: one either overeats or undereats.  For some reason, nobody seems to eat “normally” when they are stressed out.  Consequently, it has occurred to me that it is quite puzzling that I was not skinny when I was in high school.  I’ve been wonderful at stressing out for as long as I can remember, which means I did it in high school; and so I can’t figure out why I was fat!

blueberry muffin topper over blueberry yogurt; I can't believe I used to prefer flavored yogurt. yecch!!

This musing is brought about by several things: first, I am stressed out right now.  Obviously.  Equally obviously, eating when it feels like you’ve swallowed seventeen bowling balls before you’ve even taken a single bite is not at all a pleasant experience.  I may not have the greatest hunger / satiation cues out there, but they exist.  Usually.  But not right now.  Which means that I am spending a vast majority of my time feeling overly stuffed, because I can’t trust my body when it tells me that it doesn’t want to eat anymore.

free sample I received one day last week. I hate coffee, but I'm going to need this one of these days.

Second, my therapist requested that I find a photo from when I was younger — not an adolescent, but a little kid.  When I asked how little, she basically said that it should be at an age when I wasn’t unhappy with myself.  So I went through my parents’ photo albums, and I realized something: the only pictures toward which I have “loving” feelings are those taken at a time of which I have no recollection.  I don’t remember being two years old, so I can’t say if I hated myself.  But when I look at pictures from when I was five or six… I can remember that quite clearly, and it fills me with revulsion.  I fill me with revulsion.  And I can’t even say why, probably because I felt that way before I even knew how to talk.

Before the terrible pumpkin shortage ended, I bought this.

Honestly, I couldn’t tell much difference between this and Libby’s… except for the price, of course.  😉  I used it to make my baked cottage cheese and pumpkin, which turns out to be a very interesting recipe — every time I make it, the result is slightly different.

I still like it, though.  Well, I didn’t like the version with the baking soda.  That was just gross.

The apple I referenced in my last post was an Ambrosia apple.

I have found that if I turn the apple upside down, my corer (not actually the one I have, just very similar) does a much better job.

It tasted lovely; but my beautiful arrangement was nonexistent after I bumped into the wall while carrying the plate to the table.  Yeah, I’m awesome.

And a new-to-me fruit: Asian pears.

I like!  Is there actually a difference between the brown and yellow pears, or is one just a riper version of the other?… They tasted a little different, but then again, a ripe banana tastes a little different than an unripe banana, too.

Speaking of bananas, my peanut butter jar is finished, which makes me feel oddly sad.  But it did call for some banana oats in a jar.

Honestly, I prefer stovetop oats, but I was just so excited that I had a glass jar, I had to make this in the microwave!  You would also think that would melt the peanut butter, but you would be wrong.  What it did was nearly burn off my fingers.

Somehow I managed to keep my extremities intact with the help of a super-long spoon.

I obviously hated it.  Now I’m back to my jar of PB&Co.; I made a sandwich to take to school tomorrow, and it was a major arm workout to stir that thing up!!

Weekend = frozen product review.

Rice Dream, cocoa marble fudge.

Sounds awesome, right?… It wasn’t.  I don’t know quite why.  My dad described it as tasting “flat” — there just wasn’t much flavor at all.  It wasn’t bad, but if I’m going to eat something like this, I want it to be good.

savory oats -- nothing disappointing here!

So, about all of those problems I was having in completing all of these projects for school… which is definitely bad for my health, as it is directly responsible for the stress-induced eczema which is making a rapid comeback, as well as for what is probably developing into an ulcer (yes, I know that ulcers are caused by bacteria, but whatever)… someone was supposed to be helping me with that, and there was a lot of information that I needed from her so that I could work on these projects over the weekend.

Those papers are sitting on her desk at work.

At least, I certainly hope they’re sitting on her desk at work, because if they’ve been inadvertently thrown out, I’m really screwed.

I told my mom that if I ever say anything about going back to school again after this — because I know I will — she should slap me.  It is so not worth the mental and emotional drain.  (She tells me, “So quit.”  Where were you when I was crying myself to sleep every night when I was a kid because I didn’t want to go to school?  Didn’t it ever occur to you to ask why I hated it so much?!)

Because the projects in question don’t directly relate to my chosen career path, I am going to make my life a little easier and invent some facts if need be.  But because I’m “fastidious” (a description of me provided by Mr. J), I felt compelled to at least base these things on actual facts, so I went out on a site visit today.  But I had to hurry back home since my dad needed the car, which left me with some time to tinker around the kitchen.

Pre-bake: sweet dumpling squash (over-)stuffed with a mixture of TVP, spinach, zygote carrots, baby bellas, garlic salt, chili powder, cayenne pepper, and sweet paprika.

Post-roast.  Accompanied by the ubiquitous roasted cauliflower, of course.  And it was roasted because there were some other things in the oven at the time, and I can’t be bothered with constantly changing the oven temperature.

That is how I came to discover I love roasted tofu.  Several of you asked how I roast my tofu; really, it’s just like roasting anything else.  I press the tofu first, but you don’t want to remove all of the moisture, because then you’d probably end up with pebbles.  I’ve roasted Mori-Nu and Nasoya; they both work, but the texture will be a little different.  After pressing, I cube the tofu and put it in a freezer bag with my seasonings of choice (it’s usually a variation that includes some combination of garlic salt, chili powder, paprika, seasoned salt, cayenne pepper, garam masala, garlic powder, and / or onion powder, though you can use anything that strikes your fancy).  Just toss the cubes around in there for a bit until they’re well-coated, spread them out on a greased baking sheet, and roast at 450° for about half an hour or until the edges of the tofu cubes start to brown.  Ta-da!

Last night, in the midst of all of my stressing out, I took an ill-advised amount of anti-histamines because I knew that I would never get any sleep otherwise.  I guess it did the trick — when do I ever sleep for seven consecutive hours?! — but I’d rather not depend on such measures, thank you very much, and so I am going to try the hot-bath-before-bed route tonight.  We’ll see how that works out.

(I am way behind on my blog-reading.  It turns out that stressing out is very time-consuming to the exclusion of all other activities, including painting my very naked nails, which is sad indeed.  My deepest apologies!!)

Have a happy Monday!

“Don’t let your mind bully your body into believing it must carry the burden of its worries.” 
~Astrid Alauda
(ah…yeah.)

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6 responses to “Stress Central

  1. Your eats look super good, I’ve never been much of squash fan but that stuff looks darn good! 😉

  2. When I’m stressed my throat gets so tight that I even find it hard to swallow!

    Thank you for sharing how you roast your tofu. I’m definitely going to try this this week!! 😀

    xxx

  3. I know the feeling of being stressed over school! Ironically, it’s always the classes that don’t seem to have any relevance to our course of study that provoke the most stress, isn’t it?! That’s how it seems to be for me this semester, at least! I hope you get those papers and stress settles for you 🙂
    You know I’m loving the stuffed squash dinner…just can’t get enough of them!

  4. Yes, I definitely fall into the former category of stress management. For some reason overeating seems to calm me down temporarily…perhaps the urge for food to deal with stress is related to seratonin, or just total adrenal burnout. I don’t know…I just wish I knew how to stop it!

    Your conversation with your Mum sounds exactly like the ones I have with my own at least twice a week. It’s not that I want to quit, it’s that I want to be able to cope with NOT quitting! And oh, the irrelevant projects and seminars. I’m so sorry you have to suffer through them too.

    I really hope the stress lessens for you at some point ~ just know that I admire you a heck of a lot for the way you do battle through it and I often look to your posts to give me motivation to do the same. I wish I could be as strong as you!

    ~Jess~
    xxxxxxx

  5. I use the Taster’s Choice Hazzelnut instant coffee almost every morning! I am lazy like that and usually only use the coffee pot when I’m going to be at home all day cause I’m the only one that drinks coffee at home and using just one packet of coffee for one cup is easier. I’d gladly take them off your hands 🙂

    I have been buying that organic canned pumpkin all summer, and I don’t even remember the last time I had libby’s! I don’t think it would taste that different either but other people have claimed as such…

    I saw some Ambrosia apples in the store a couple weeks ago and wondered how they tasted. I really like Honeycrisp though!

  6. Pingback: Loss For Words |

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