WIAW: Then and Now

You wanna know what’s pretty darn cool?

These photos of Pluto.

Wanna know what else is pretty darn cool?

Looking through my blog and seeing progress in my health, faith, and maturity. I’ve only been blogging for {almost} two years, but what an eventful two years they have been!

I’ll save the teary-eyed talk for my actual blogiversary (which I have not even memorized), but today for What I Ate Wednesday, I want to do a little “then and now” comparison of my eats. The “then” photos are from early 2014, and the “now” photos are from yesterday. So this is comparing my eats between a 1.5-year period.

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What I am taking away from this comparison of eats is that:

a) The eats don’t look all that different between then and now.

b) The volume of eats is more or less the same between then and now.

c) The caloric density of my eats is much greater now. (My eats last year were very “clean” with minimal sugar and oils.)

d) I’m doing much less activity now.

e) I’m pretty sure that I feel more energized now.

Breakfast

THEN

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plain 0% Greek yogurt with a crumbled banana muffin, banana slices, and nut butter

NOW

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full fat Greek yogurt + chia seeds with a crumbled berry banana muffin, banana slices, and giant scoop of nut butter

Snack

(In this instance, my “then” snack was more calorically dense than my “now” one.)

THEN

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Coconut nut bar

NOW

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finished off a bag of Enlightened wasabi crisps*

Lunch

THEN

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grilled chicken on undressed spinach + grapes + carrots + BelVita

NOW

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two fried eggs with goat cheese and honey on an English muffin + zucchini sautéed in sesame oil

Snack

THEN

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plain 0% Greek yogurt with banana slices and nut butter // I would often only add the nut butter if I had just worked out

NOW

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handful of almonds and the last Quest bar from Blend (finally!) // not post-workout, just hungry

Dinner

THEN

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farro with baked salmon and steamed greens // little to no oil or sugar

NOW

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quinoa with turkey meatloaf (included eggs and panko, topped with a sweet ketchup maple glaze) + salad dressed in a homemade maple mustard vinaigrette

Dessert

THEN

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Greek yogurt with dried figs // I still eat this and love it, but today there’s a lot more of this…

NOW

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peach blueberry cobbler a la mode + some unpictured 2% milk

Like I said, the eats may not look that different, but when I keep in mind the caloric density of my foods today and the absence of formal, intense workouts lately, I have to say that I’m proud of my progress.

And guess what. I feel so much better now. I don’t agree with those who say “clean eating” makes you feel better than ever. Yes, eating nutritious foods most of the time makes me feel great, but getting rid of sugars and oils from everything makes me feel crabby, not better than ever.

My goal in this comparison is not to judge my past self or ridicule myself for being a little restrictive, because that time period was just another part of my journey. I’ve learned that recovery seems to keep unfolding itself, even if you think you’re just about done, which is why I say I’m 99.9% recovered.

So tell me:

Do you notice any differences between your eats now and your eats a year (or two) ago?

What did you eat for lunch yesterday? That goat cheese, honey, egg sandwich hit the spot.

Do you like meatloaf? I LOVE MEATLOAF, and the one I made last night was fantastic.

*My friends at Enlightened sent me more of their crisps because I’m in love with them and I blogged all about it. Honesty = best policy.

Day in The Life {Last Month of Freshman Year}

Hello for the third time this week!

I thought I’d check in with y’all again this week with another one of my favorite kinds of posts— day in the life! Everyone keeps asking me if I can believe that I’m almost done being a college freshman. My answer is always, “Sometimes I have to tell myself that I’m in college.”

I still need nap time and snack time, so I’m basically still in preschool.

Nevertheless, here I am in my last month of freshman year at Boston University, and here is what a typical day during this hectic time of year looks like!

6:40 AM— Alarm goes off // Realize that sun is peering through the windows and panic for a split second, thinking I overslept. But alas, it’s just springtime finally. // Check emails on phone

6:45 AM— Bathroom, brush teeth, put in contacts, etc.

6:55 AM— Eat some frozen banana pieces // Pray

7:05 AM— Get stuff ready and run to the gym // I wear my workout clothes to sleep if I know I’m going to the gym in the morning.

7:15 AM— Arrive at the gym and meet my buddy PJ there // Work out

  • dynamic warmup
  • upper body strength
  • rowing + thruster workout

8:10 AM— Walk back from the gym

8:30 AM— Arrive at the dining hall and eat breakfast with PJ, Sean, and Rachel // I failed to take a photo, but I ate scrambled eggs, bacon(!), and oatmeal with coconut, honey, peanut butter, and banana

9:15 AM— Go back to room to shower // Realize I’m still hungry (yes, even after that large breakfast) and eat a mini blueberry oatmeal bar

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9:40 AM— Run out the door to meet a friend before class to go over some homework

10:00 AM— Organic chem lecture

11:00 AM— Anatomy lecture

12:00 PM— Writing class // class got out 10 minutes early, hooray!

12:40 PM— Lunch // A mighty delicious lunch! I enjoy every last bite.

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salad of mixed greens, cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots, tuna, feta, and honey dijon + turkey and roasted vegetables

1:00 PM— Decide that I want to write this post!

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1:30 PM— Walk back to the dorm to get some gum [to fix the tuna breath] and a bigger jacket for my tour // See that it’s supposed to snow in an hour. SO MUCH FOR SPRINGTIME, BOSTON.

2:00 PM— Tour! // A little sleet never hurt anyone…

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3:30 PM— Go back to the dorm to change my soaking wet jeans // Steal some dining hall peanut butter out of desperation after running out of my own peanut butter // Eat snack of frozen banana with the PB

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4:00 PM— Meet a friend to study for our linguistics exam

5:15 PM— Dinner with PJ, Jon, and Rachel // “ballpark night” at the dining hall

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salad with carrots, tomatoes, beets, roasted red peppers, Greek dressing + Italian sausage and peppers

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apple crisp a la mode because it’s my FAVORITE

6:00 PM— Anatomy lab // look at cat cadavers, cows and pigs in utero, and…never mind

7:10 PM— Go back to the dorm to drop off my backpack and put on some warmer clothes for intramural softball with the Catholic Center team

7:25 PM— Start walking to the field across campus // Get a text from my friend that the game is cancelled // Back to the dorm

7:40 PM— Check emails + work on planning next semester’s schedule // Find out that I will be dead last for class registration this time around…Oh dear. // Snack on banana and peanut butter

9:00 PM— Homework and studying // Some more banana and peanut butter in there

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12:00 AM— Finish typing this post

12:30 AM— Get ready for bed! (I have a 11AM class on Thursdays, don’t worry 🙂 )

A busy but wonderful day indeed! I’m also realizing that I ate a lot of fats yesterday. Bacon, eggs, cheese, peanut butter, more peanut butter, ice cream, sausage… But hey, don’t fear the fat!

So tell me:

What did you eat for lunch yesterday?

What were you doing at 7 AM, 3 PM, and 8 PM yesterday?

What kinds of fun fats did you eat yesterday?

Why Did I Eat It?

HEY I’m blogging in the middle of a school week! That doesn’t happen very often these days, huh?

I’m even joining in on the What I Ate Wednesday fun for the first time in a few weeks!

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Today I’m showing you what I ate on Monday, a regular ol’ day in college. But I also wanted to share the reasons why I ate what I ate.

{My roommate just read that to herself and mocked me: “And this is why I added a pinch of salt. And this is why I had three scoops of oatmeal instead of two! And this is why I had 27 scoops of peanut butter instead of 24.” So this is how I am perceived in the world.}

I said it in my NEDA week post, but I’ll say it again: it can be difficult to not analyze food to some extent, even after recovering from an eating disorder. However, my mindset towards food has shifted from focusing on restriction and calories to focusing on nutrients, fuel, and happiness.

Sometimes I choose to eat certain foods to make sure I am getting enough macros, nutrients, etc. Other times, I choose to eat foods because I’m in a rush. Still other times, I choose to eat foods because they just taste good.

So here are Monday’s eats and the answers to the question: Why did I eat it?

Breakfast 

-Two egg scramble with all the veggies in the land // For protein, fiber, and nutrients + staying power for three straight hours of classes.

-Whole wheat apple pancake with peanut butter and banana on top // For whole grains, fruit, delicious taste, healthy fats and just…peanut butter.

-Glass o’ milk // To wash down the pancake with peanut butter and for calcium.

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Lunch

Grilled chicken // For protein, and it was spiced well.

-Salad with spinach, tomatoes, carrots, sautéed veggies, whole wheat pasta salad, and honey dijon dressing // For yet more veggie power, carbs, something to eat with the chicken, and taste (man this was delicious!).

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-Apple // To keep the doctor away 😉 And because I like to end on a sweet note.

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Snacks

-Wheat Thins // Because they’re a convenient snack that I have in my dorm and I love them.

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-Bare apple chips + a couple spoonfuls of almond butter // For energy to study, fiber, healthy fats, and protein. This is also one of my favorite snacks at the moment, but now I’m out of apple chips. 😦

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-Another spoonful of almond butter // I was still hungry and I knew I would not be eating dinner in another three hours.

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[I played intramural softball with some people from the Catholic Center, which was freezing, fun, and humorous all at the same time. I strongly despise softball/baseball, so this was truly one for the team. But it was low-key, so I’d do it again!]

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My thoughts: “But I can barely catch with my good hand.”

Dinner

-Meatloaf, mashed potatoes, steamed vegetables, and gravy // Because I will eat any sort of meatloaf (okay, maybe not). Also for protein, carbs, veggies, and comfort (a good meal for thawing out from the cold outdoors).

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Dessert(s)

-Apple and raisin compote + peach cobbler ice cream // I wanted dessert.

There’s a little more explanation for this one. I grabbed the apple raisin compote in hopes to have it a la mode with vanilla ice cream, but there was no vanilla ice cream when I went to go get some. Thus, I tried this peach cobbler ice cream, but it was kinda gross to me, so I didn’t really eat it. I finished most of the apple raisin thing though.

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-Strawberry shortcake with vanilla ice cream // Because our faculty in residence baked it from scratch, so how could I say no? I also justified that I didn’t have much of my dessert at the dining hall, so…

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It was worth the Monday night sugar overload.

Looking back at my day of eats, it looks like I ate quite a lot. But as I was going about my day on Monday, this was the amount my body needed (and wanted when it came to the desserts). Even though I seek to get enough vegetables, whole grains, nutrients, etc., I am fortunate to say that I also truly enjoy the healthy foods I eat. Then I might have some (or a lot of) sugar because it’s also tasty and nourishing to my soul.

Mindful eating used to be my whole life, but with time, mindful eating has become a useful tool— an optional tool at times.

I hope you all have a wonderful Wednesday!

So tell me: 

Do you consider yourself a “mindful eater”?

What is a sweet treat that you’ve eaten recently?

Do you like softball or baseball?

My First Spa Day

All good things must come to an end!

That’s been our motto for the past couple of days as everyone staying at our Florida home has been going back to their real homes for work and school. Mom and I were the last two left, so we spent Saturday cleaning and packing up the house and all our belongings. Despite “closing up shop”, it’s been an awesome (and super long) vacation, so there is absolutely nothing to be sad about.

Friday

Especially when you end the vacation with a spa day! This was my first spa day since I’m eighteen years old now. All my little girl dreams came true.

Pre-spa breakfast was avocado toast with a dippy egg and a banana on the side.

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We went to the Ritz Carlton spa for the day (ooh la la, I know), and the staff was incredibly kind (like, sometimes I was uncomfortable with how nice they were). They even allowed my day at the spa to be free of charge since my mom and aunt were both paying for day passes and facials.

Four thumbs up for customer service (I’m counting my toe thumbs)!!

Our spa day started with moves at the fitness center. I ran for 20 minutes on the treadmill and then completed Hillary’s arm and ab superset workout with 10-20 burpees after each superset instead of kettlebell swings.

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Thanks for creeping on me during my workout, Madre 

I was feelin’ weeeeak by the end of my workout, so a nourishing lunch afterwards was just perfect.

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“Bento box” with seared ahi tuna, mixed greens, three bean salad, and farro salad

I savored every last bite of this plate since it was all so delicious and fresh. The price was also great for all this food (look at all that tuna)!

Following lunch, we showered in the snazzy spa showers, put on the classic white robes, and then chillaxed.

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You bet I had some of those yogurt pretzels

I attempted to go into the sauna, but I only stayed for 5 minutes because I felt like a baking cookie. And the steam room…lasted 5 seconds. I couldn’t see anything and I couldn’t breathe. Nuhthanks.

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The jacuzzi on the other hand…

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…yeah I could do that. I’m such a juvenile.

I spent my time in the jacuzzi for a bit, but I dried off and headed back to the empty studio in the fitness center to stretch while my mom and aunt were getting their faces lathered and massaged. I also kept snacking on the complimentary apples and snack mix, as well as the infused water. Alllllll the day. Strawberry-infused water was my favorite!

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I had a wonderful stretching session by my lonesome, and I even did a tiny bit of ballet at the barre. Oh how I miss it!

Is it sad that I was sore from stretching the next day? I guess I deprived my muscles of oxygen for a little too long during my deep stretches (after not having stretched in forever).

Eventually, our rejuvenating spa day came to an end. (Not that I really needed rejuvenation after a two-week vacation in Florida…) We later joined the dudes for dinner at a Vietnamese restaurant.

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Rice vermicelli with grilled shrimp and abundant herbs and veggies

Then we went home for ice cream to balance out all the greens eaten throughout the day. 😉

Saturday

Florida was super chilly (by Florida standards), so hot oats hit the spot for breakfast!

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½ c. quick oats cooked in ½ c. water and ½ c. 2% milk // half a sliced banana, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, vanilla protein powder, pinch of salt stirred in // glob of peanut butter on top

As I mentioned at the top of this post, mom and I spent the day cleaning and packing while also dropping off family members at the airport for their respective flights. We did take a shopping break at TJMaxx in the late morning though!

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I’m season-confused. I got a sweater and three pairs of shorts, and I’m going back to single-digit temperatures in Boston. Spring will come soon enough, right?

A clean-out-the-fridge lunch was in order that afternoon: avocado toast with our last egg + practically half a box of spinach with tons of feta cheese. Plus an unpictured clementine and a million veggie straws aka one of the most addicting snacks out there.

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Oh my goodness, too many leaves in my stomach. But I enjoyed this simple lunch nonetheless!

After a long day of cleaning (and church in the evening), Madre offered to take me out to dinner at Seasons 52, a restaurant we had both been wanting to try for a while. I gratefully agreed!

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To start: grilled chicken pesto flatbread

The flatbread was to die for. Everything was packed with flavor but not too salty— a balance that is hard to come by!

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Mom’s order: pork tenderloin with sweet potato mash and roasted vegetables

She shared a good hunk of pork tenderloin with me, and mannnn was it delicious. I think I closed my eyes at one point as I savored the tender, flavorful piece of meat. Dishes like these prevent me from becoming a vegetarian.

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My order: “Winter Vegetable Tasting” that included citrus farro quinoa salad, a black bean & veggie soft taco, roasted golden beets, broccoli rabe, and grilled tofu with fruit salsa

There was not a thing on this plate that we didn’t enjoy! The citrus farro quinoa salad was our favorite though. We must re-create it at home!

I totally saved room for dessert, since we kept seeing waiters and waitresses walk around to other tables with plates of dessert shots.

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They brought out an assortment of mini desserts in shot glasses from which you could choose. If I remember correctly, they had: carrot cake, chocolate peanut butter mousse, pecan pie, s’mores, caramel macchiato, strawberry cannoli, key lime pie, blueberry lemon custard, and raspberry brownie.

Talk about tough life choices.

Without much hesitation, I chose the carrot cake, and mom chose the raspberry brownie. I ended up eating all of mine and most of hers. They were mini, so it’s a little more acceptable to eat 1.5 desserts, yes?

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Thanks for the fabulous dinner, Madre!

Sunday

Since we went to church on Saturday evening, mom and I got to sleep in before doing some last minute cleaning of the house.

I was also able to squeeze in some moves outside as it started to drizzle a bit: 5 minute jump rope warmup + Purely Twins’ crazy burpee leg workout (loved this!!!) + 8 minute ab tabata.

The ab tabata was 4 rounds of 20 seconds work, 10 seconds rest of weighted Russian twists, modified V-ups, crossover knee to elbow planks, and spiderman planks.

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I washed that shirt before wearing it again, promise.

As always, a day of travel calls for overnight oats!

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Now we’re en route to New York, but this time we’re taking the auto train rather than road tripping like we did on our way down to Florida. There’s snow in the northeast and I’m not sure if our bodies are ready for the temperature shock.

I’ve obviously been spoiled silly on this vacation, but I am looking forward to school, schedules, and just feeling productive. Nevertheless, I am beyond thankful for the family time and amazing experiences we’ve had in Florida!

P.S. I used so many parentheses in this post. Sorry, I love asides apparently.

So tell me:

Have you ever had a spa day?

Have you ever gotten sore from stretching? Please say yes.

What is your favorite cold-weather food?

Which of the dessert shots would you choose?

Behind the Scenes #19: Food Ratio Problems

Thinking-Out-Loud

with the lovely Amanda!

1. It looked like a Steven Spielberg movie outside this morning. Foggy, muggy, warm, and just gross. So I wore red pants to bring some color into the world, and I’m pretty sure that’s the reason for it being sunny and gorgeous out right now. 😉

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2. It also happened to be college gear day at school today! Check out all these ladies on the path to success. Being me, I bought apparel from every college I visited except the one I’m attending, so I just wore Boston University colors with a lanyard that they gave me at orientation. Guatever works.

3. I ate so much nut butter yesterday (hooray for fats!), and I am MORE than okay with that.

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Cookie dough cereal taken on the go to AP Calc review

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PB & J for lunch

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Apple banana oatmeal muffin with sunflower seed butter for a snack

It’s a lifestyle, really.

4. I am currently listening to my brother making business phone calls, and my mind is boggled. He sounds so dang grown-up! Is this the same person who would dance to weird Pokemon songs with me in front of the video camera?

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No, that’s not a wig on my head (I’m on the left, just to clarify).

5. I’m all about getting my food ratios just so when I’m eating something with multiple components. For example, I just ate a delicious yogurt bowl with berries, sunflower seed butter, and banana slices (added after this picture was taken).

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When I was getting to the end of the bowl, I had a lot of nut butter and banana left, but not enough Greek yogurt, so I put an extra huge dollop into my bowl. But then I realized I had too much Greek yogurt, so I had to add a little bit of cereal to the plain yogurt…I could make a science out of this stuff! It’s also a good thing I’m not worried about calories. 🙂

6. AP Calculus exam is next Wednesday. I’m so thankful to have parents who are math majors, because sometimes I can be so daft when it comes to math. My dad told me last night as he was helping me with a problem: “Well, it seems pretty obvious that your career isn’t going to be centered around math!”

…..It’s so true that I’m not even the slightest bit offended.

7. I have a roommate for college! I decided not to participate in the honors college at BU since the PT program will put a ton on my plate already, so that meant I could say yes to dorming with my original roommate! She’s so cool. We’ve been texting each other, and we even video chatted a couple weeks ago. I HAVE A COLLEGE FRIEND.

8. My mom and brother went to eat at the Culinary Institute of America when they were driving back from Canada (they were visiting my grandparents and relatives). I’m jealous. Just look at this dessert (which was one of many amazing dishes they ate):

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I don’t know what it is, but I want it.

9. Since I’ve been eating more fats (and just more in general) recently, I think my hair has become thicker and smoother. This probably just goes to show that even though I was previously eating just enough, I need to be eating more than I think. It’s a long road of recovery for sure.

10. Now I’m in the mood for ice cream.

Hope you all are having an awesome Thursday!

So tell me:

Do you like to have your food in certain ratios?

Did anyone else ever have a bowl haircut when they were younger?

What is one thing you’ve been eating a lot of recently?