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Simply Stripped

Friday, April 01, 2011

I am enjoying the simplicity of this morning as I sit at my home office desk. My desk is right under a double window that faces east. I'm feeling a little joyful and melancholy as I watch the sun coming up over the tree line. I'm thinking of facing the east, moving towards what I love and my friends and family 'back east'

I am a Virginia girl through and through. Born and raised in the Northern Virginia area. The people nearest and dearest to me (other than my husband and sons) are in that area. I love the mountains, the rivers, the places, the smells, the foods, the people. Everything about life seems to run smoother for me when I am there. The sun shines brighter and I smile bigger when I'm there.

But, I am here, in Indiana. I have been here for four years and will most likely be here for another year or two. So, I am surrounding myself with the things that keep me connected to what I love. Pictures, colors, textures, anything that says welcome friends. Yesterday I bought myself a special place setting just for my desk. I pack my lunch and snacks every day and most days eat at my desk. I bought a placemat, small plate, bowl and matching mug.

Love it! And the card of the two girls hugging is from Amy, so I feel like we are having breakfast together this morning watching the sun rise in the east.

Today is the start of a new month and a new chapter for me in so many ways. This marks the beginning of my part time status at my job. I will have one day off each week and I will be going into work an hour later. I am using the time to start my day at a lower pace, enjoy the sunrise, count my blessings and fully digest my breakfast. I will also get in a morning lower body workout, make a trip to the Goodwill and teach yoga at noon. Mostly this day off is to help me to have a day that I focus attention on writing, reading and researching for some of the future things I am working on. I am working on writing recipes and ideas about clean eating on a budget, how to make your exercise/nutrition work together towards your goals, and I'm working on getting things in general more streamlined and simplistic.

But I gotta get moving! So, let's eat!

Protein smoothie w/mango and blueberries. The blueberries and a banana were supposed to be in my smoothie. However, I discovered someone ate the last banana after I went to bed. And, I would rather chew some food instead of putting it all in the smoothie. This was yummy, sweet and felt like a treat.

It looks like yesterday was my day of substitutions! LOL! Two hardboiled eggs with Organics garlic pepper on them. And a bowl of watermelon (it was supposed to be the melon popsicles made with watermelon and cantaloup)

Tasty Naked Wonton Soup! Hot, steamy delicious and surprisingly filling. I was concerned with the amount of liquid foods I was scheduled to have and the lower about of meat source proteins in the day that I would feel hungry, but I did not.

Strawberries and cashews for afternoon snack

And this may not look appealing, but it was delicious! Butternut squash Farro 'risotto' with black truffle oil! Delicious, rich and satisfying! I felt stuffed!

Time for me to scoot out the door to the gym and get this day rolling! I leave you with a fun shot from my photo session.

Be blessed, be beautiful, be YOU!

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Love the colors in your place setting! The way you describe Virginia is exactly how I feel about where I want to be...in the mountains, near a river or lake, enjoying every minute of this life!
    3456 days ago
    love your new place setting :)
    3456 days ago
    You look HOT in your swimsuit. You should be so proud of your progress and your motivation for others. Your food looks yummy :)
    3457 days ago
    Love the place setting. Looking forward to the clean eating on a budget book. I had the same banana dilemma yesterday too! Except that my disappeared banana was frozen. You look great and so happy. Thrilled that you are living your dream. Can't wait for the next chapter in the life of Caroline. You go girl!
    3457 days ago
    I love the joy in your voice, it is contagious, truly. I love the placesetting, it looks like something out of a designer magazine! I love your plan and determation! I love you! Thanks for the inspiration, and the food looks fabulous. I need to start eating clean more. And the strength training, too.
    3457 days ago
    You are AMAZING! What a wonderful blog. I have been MIA for awhile but came back in perfect time to read your very encouraging and uplifting blog. Thank you for sharing and I love your new photos!
    3457 days ago
    OMG, the Butternut Squash Risotto is the bomb. I made 2 batches and froze the servings in ziplocs. I love it!

    I like that idea of having a place setting for your meals. I eat my breakfast, snacks and lunches at my desk all week as well. I may need to steal that idea to make my meals more enjoyable. Of course, I'm in a cubicle environment, so I'll probably get some crazy looks but you know what, I'm the kinda gal who really doesn't give a rats butt what people say or how they look at it.

    You are a cutie and I am so glad you have found your calling. I can't wait for you to start up a book on how to eat clean on a budget. I have managed the clean eating for a long while but some of the things we eat tend to get a bit pricey so it totally makes sense for folks that would like to lead a clean eating lifestyle to be able to afford it too.

    Love you girl!
    3457 days ago
    Great pic!

    Do you have the recipe for the "risotto"? that sounds awesome!
    3457 days ago
    Your place setting is so nice! I'm sure you will enjoy using it. Love the card nearby too.

    I am a VA gal too. Born and raised in NOVA and both my parents born in NOVA too. All of my family is here which is really nice! I haven't lived anywhere else, but not sure I'd want to.

    Enjoy the less hours at work. You are so busy and active I'm sure you'll have plenty to fill up the time!
    3457 days ago
    Love that place setting! I like my weekend mornings like that!
    3457 days ago
    I love the pics and your desk, I am so happy you have a nice area view to work from.
    Enjoy your yoga at lunch, the food looks amazing!
    The photo....PURE INSPIRATION :-)
    Hugs T.
    3457 days ago
    Love the picture, you are going to also love your new schedule. I work compress hours, I get every 2nd Monday off I very much enjoy the time for myself. Very interested in your idea of clean eating on a budget:) Have a great day + weekend, Josée
    3457 days ago
    I love the special dinnerware as well! THat food all looks so yummy. I can't imagine living away from family members, they are what keep me going most days (besides my dh and children). Glad you were able to go PT and being able to continue working on your dream.

    Your photo is fabulous. YOur legs look awesome!
    3457 days ago
  • TWALKER0475
    Love the place setting, what a relaxing start to the day!
    3457 days ago
  • TEMPEST272002
    I love the idea of having special dinnerware for your desk... just makes each meal a little more special.
    3458 days ago
    I love that picture! So happy, confident and beautiful! LOVE your tummy! Enjoy your day, sweetie! I'm gonna message you b/c I have some questions.

    3458 days ago
    Looking very good, girl...heart, body and soul! Love you, Mary

    3458 days ago
    You know... you're actually closer to me in Indiana than in Virginia... I really want to visit some of you gals, and was checking the time/distances.

    Love the place setting... beautiful. To have an actual place setting for my desk, I'd have to tidy it up!! It's a disaster!!

    3458 days ago
    You know I'm ready for you to move back here! :)
    3458 days ago
    Another great blog-funny here, too. My son graduated from Herndon HS, my daughter and grandson lived in Reston, and I interpreted at a church and junior college in Alexandria.
    3458 days ago
    Thanks for sharing, Carolyn!
    3458 days ago
  • JLITT62
    I enjoy my calm mornings.

    I grew up in NY, where I'm currently living, but always knew unwanted to live further south. Managed a yr in MD before getting married and sucked back into the NE. then had 17 lovely yrs in TX, but apparently the gravitational pull of the NE. Is too strong, & here I am again.

    But I do believe that happiness is a choice, & I choose it more often than not even on snowy Spring days like today.
    3458 days ago
    I can feel the serenity just reading your blog. Glad that things are slowing a bit for you. Great photo!
    3458 days ago
    Nice blog! Funny, we have something in common! I grew up in the N.VA area, specifically Alexandria and Manassas as a teen! We then moved to FL to raise our kids, and arrived back in N.VA from 1998 - 2006. We then moved to Austin, TX just because we needed a change. My daughter is still there and I miss her and my husband's family. It's very possible we may end up back there in the next year or so.

    Funny, I am beginning to identify with you. Getting so much stronger, losing fat, and my energy is so cranked. I love looking at your food blogs everyday, too.
    3458 days ago
    Sounds like life is just clickin' along... everything falling into place (with intentional pushes by you).. so that you can have the life you dream of.. life is good (and gettin' better)! Can't wait to hear about eatin' clean on a budget (a money budget and a time budget?)

    3458 days ago
    wow, nice blog
    3458 days ago
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