$25 Giveaway from Safeway and Vons

I’ve really been enjoying getting to know the Von’s Home Grocery Delivery service.  Talk about convenience. Order today, deliver tomorrow.

I’m excited to be able to offer a $25.00 gift card giveaway to one lucky commenter below!  You can use it for your first home delivery service and don’t forget to use the exclusive promotional code and get $7.00 off and free delivery on your first order. Just enter in KRSTBG when you check out and you are good to go! You can also use it at any Safeway store or chain, including Vons or Pavilions which are in the Southern California area near me.  I know they have other stores with the Safeway brand across the United States.

To win the $25.00 Safeway gift card, please leave a comment below with what your favorite vegetable is.  I know, I’m crazy, but I need food ideas right now.  The winner will be chosen randomly and must reside in the United States. :-) Use wisely, don’t pollute.  Contest ends Thursday, September 2 at midnight PST. Have fun!

What About Beets?

Why am I so lame at writing titles?

So I finally got my issues ironed out.  Apparently in the last few weeks my body stopped being happy with me eating eggs.  Since I’ve eaten egg whites every day for the last year, and one hard boiled egg a day for the last three months… I assumed that WASN’T the case. :-) Sadly.. it was.  But my Naturopathic Doctor has guided me to the path of true enlightenment. Heehee.

Ok, I’ll stop! I’m just hungry!

Anyway, I had those past three weeks of trying to eat SOMETHING and then eating eggs all day and, well, THAT wasn’t pretty.  Why eggs, now? I guess the point is that if I have to much of one thing, my body is becoming resistant to it. So the next two days I ended up having chicken fingers, ranch, french fries, and… COLDSTONE! I’m back on track.  I have about 16 things I can eat and hopefully I can continue to broaden them out to 25 or 30 but I will have to stick to this diet for the next 3-4 months in the hope of ‘curing’ my body at which point I should be able to go back to eating ‘bad’ things (like wheat and sugar) in moderation.

So I need ideas! Here are the things I can eat…

Rice! (My staple…) Carrots, peas, almond milk (no sugar, so I’ve been drinking rice milk), broccoli, asparagus, chard, kale, celery, sweet potatoes, spinach, beets, apples, blueberries, peaches, pears, nectarines, tomatoes, nuts (no peanuts or filberts), any protein as long as there is no sugar or wheat in it, and hopefully I can branch out into buckweat, millet, and beans.  I can have cucumber and zucchini but only once in awhile because they are in the ‘gourd’ family.

Today’s menu:

puffed rice cereal with rice milk, a pear, cashews and sunflower seeds
Rice tortilla with almond nut butter spread, spinach leaves, turkey slices (I found some with no sugar!!!), and beets
Rice crackers
Tonight’s dinner will be some grilled fish, brown rice, and sauted spinach.  Maybe I will have another pear for dessert.

Yesterday I made some crock pot chicken soup with water, rice, chicken, carrots, celery, green beans, and broccoli. Threw in spices of rosemary & thyme.  It wasn’t horrible.

Once I’m perfectly sure I can eat fruit (I’m introducing new foods very slowly) I should be able to make smoothies with rice milk and fruit.

So, I know all of you have cooking backgrounds… Tell me, what should I eat?? And how should I COOK it?? I actually baked a sweet potato and boiled beets yesterday and I was really proud of that… Oh, and that crockpot soup thing.

Yep, Steamed Rice and BOILED Shrimp

These restaurants must think I’m nuts. I walked into a Pho place the other day and asked if I could get a shrimp and rice bowl. Yes, no problem. Wait, is the shrimp marinated in anything? Yes, oyster sauce, sugar, salt, etc. Whoops, that won’t work.  Well, we have our plain boiled shrimp that we put in soup although it really tastes horrible, you DEFINITELY don’t want that.

No, I do. Thanks.

At some point when this is all over I am going to gorge on a large pizza, donuts, coldstone, and a pan of brownies all to myself.  Then bathe in a tub full of apple martinis.

How many vodka bottles would that take, ya think?

My health/diet issues have persisted. From last year, I went on my clear liquid diet to eliminate all foods to try and figure out what in the heck was driving me crazy. I went on clear liquid, then only eating veggies, and persisting until I found out that chicken was a problem, and had a few cheat days.

And that pisses me off, I wonder if that is correct. Because I have been eating chicken this whole week and having problems but I thought chicken WAS ok… UGH!

Back to my problems. Oh wait, we were still on them. Anyway.

After my elimination diet I found out that I could eat fish, rice, and veggies and bread and technically be fine.  I would cheat every 2 or 3 weeks with ice cream and other things and just ‘accept’ that sometimes it would be bad.  A few months ago I just got SICK of it though. I had other problems that I felt were related to the food issues and decided to get back on it.  I thought that I was having a problem with Candida which played havoc with infections and also internally. It could cause leaky gut and other issues which seemed to be exactly what I had. It was just so frustrating so I resorted to trying some crazy witch doctor medicine. OK, it was not THAT crazy but I was desperate.  It was pretty crazy stuff too. It was making me feel REALLY sick but I kept feeling like I had to try it for a few months.  After I was on it for two months I decided that I was going to go to a holistic/naturalistic doctor to help me through all of this.  It was a good decision, I hope.

My natural health center in Orange County, CA is run by two women, one of which is named Dr. Suzanne Tang. She is so knowledgeable and helpful I really have high hopes.  I USUALLY always start out with high hopes so I do hope that continues. LOL

She did all sorts of tests… LOTS of test… which for a variety of things told me that I have extremely low Iron and Vitamin D, have chronic yeast in my system, my intestines are in very bad shape, and I’m sensitive to about 18 different foods which include sugar, wheat, yeast (both kinds, brewers and bakers), pepper, and white potatoes. Crazy.

The short story (this is already pretty long) is basically NOT EATING ANY OF THOSE THINGS for 3-6 months to keep them out of my system while we heal my insides with a variety of helpful vitamins and pills.  Then, later introduce them back slowly and at that point I won’t be ‘sensitive’ to them. I’m not allergic to them, I’m just sensitive.

At this moment it is SO frustrating because along with the items that my blood has told me I’m sensitive to, other things still bother me.  And figuring that all out is SUCH a bitch, I swear.  Two weeks ago I got all my pills that I needed to take and I had a reaction to them in plus I was trying to ‘stick to the diet’ in where some things were making me still sick.

The past week I have been on eggs, white/brown rice, veggies, chicken and fish and STILL feeling terrible. After reading my post last year, I’m kicking myself, maybe the chicken is bothering me.  So once I get back to even, I need to slowly introduce my pills back and figure out which one is causing me trouble. THEN slowly introduce other foods that don’t cause me problems.

The list of foods is long that I can try, it’s just finding out what else I’m sensitive to is extremely hard. And being really weird food that I actually have to COOK.  Strange, I know.  For instance my new list includes some fruits (apples, peach, pear, strawberries) but one of those was possibly  making me crazy.  I was trying nuts (cashews, almonds, and walnuts) but one of THOSE was driving me crazy.  I was excited that I could have bacon until I realized there is SUGAR in bacon (WTF?) so maybe Trader Joes has no-sugar bacon.  I was REALLY excited when I found crab sticks (similar to string cheese) until I realized imitation crab meat has wheat and sugar in it.

I’m trying to grin and bear it right now but I’m at the two week mark where I would be diving into a warm bagel or being weak and going for Coldstone.  I’m hoping if I sign up for 3 months of this I can actually get back to a place where I can eat those foods again. Mmm, carbs.

I can’t deny that being skinny is an awesome side benefit. I’m below 150 and maybe in the next three months (I need to start exercising more) I will get down to my ‘drivers license weight’.  The downside is I am having to be around new people that I don’t know and looking like an IDIOT as I smile and order water with lemon and food with NOTHING ON IT while I try to explain I’m not a crazy chick doing some crazy lose-weight diet.

Or maybe I should be. What do you think?

I’ll be the one stocking up on vodka though.

OC Fair 2010

Griffin Laughing

The smile on his face  is the reason why I love my life! He was so happy to be on them and just loved it!

Pure joy.

I had to take a video because he was so cute. The last few seconds just show his pure excitement about the ride.
He was loving life. So adorable! I just can’t get enough.

Sam was having tons of fun too. She got to go on more rides cause she was the big girl but she helped her brother on a few more.

She went up the big slide. Which she did not like. She did it though. Screamed for about 10 minutes after. LOL

Wish I could have gotten a video of that.

But our cuties love each other. I hope it lasts. Because they are so sweet and play so well together!

Testing Out the Vons Grocery Home Delivery Service

We always shop at Pavilions because we are used to it, we like the people there, and it has great veggies and meat.  I’ve tried the local Albertsons which is a block away from my house but the lines are long, and I just don’t like it. So when Pavillions (Vons, Safeway, etc) contacted me for another promotion opportunity and send me some gift cards to try out their Home Grocery Delivery service, I said WHY NOT!

(Scroll down if you want a promo code for $$$ off and free delivery, btw! Although, I’m entertaining, I promise. You might want to read the whole thing.)

I finally had some time to sit down and figure out the whole process. I figured it would be pretty easy.  Signing up was actually a little annoying though.  I went to the link and I registered and went to the Shop Now and had to register a second time. When I finally got to the Shop Now page the first section was BEER. Hmm :) Are they suggesting something? I figured out that it was alphabetical order yet “Baby” was the first section and they were still showing me beer! I’m probably fixating on this a little too much!

As I scroll down the long page, it didn’t have everything I wanted. I then realized that the ‘Shop by Aisle’ had more options and literally every single item that was in the store.  It was nice to know that after I put things in my cart, the next time shopping would be a lot easier because my preferences would be saved and I wouldn’t have to find them all next time. Tip: Use the search feature! You can get lost in all those categories.

I have a few main discrepancies that I have to figure out. One is that I don’t know my Club Card so I didn’t put it in when I first signed up. I know there are more sales going on then what is initially shown on the page. I’m wondering if I’m just not seeing them or if it is more expensive doing it online. It could literally go both ways.  We make so many buying options according to sales so it is hard to ‘pull the trigger’ to buy something when I know it’s sitting on sale at the actual store.

For example, Griffin drinks lactose free milk and that milk is freaking expensive. Sometimes Lactaid Whole Milk is on a two-for-one sale (2 for $7) and other times it’s cheaper to buy the Safeway Lucerne Lactose Free stuff. It just all depends.

Other nit-picky things are deli sandwich meat and hamburger meat are things that I never want a full pound of. Yes, I’m the one going to the specialist and requesting a ‘handful’ of this and ‘1/3 pound of that’. We know what we want and we don’t want to waste. :)

The cool thing is that you get to tell your personal shopper exactly what you want! So I believe you can work around a lot of those things. It makes it much nicer when I would shop at the store and I would see the personal shoppers with their carts carefully selecting items for their clients. I’m sure you have seen them before. They are always super friendly and ask me if I need anything at all. So I know it’s real people, carefully selecting items to bring home to me. I would probably be more freaked out if it was the boy in back, just tossing some produce into my bag and shipping it away on the truck. :)

I had fun shopping online for all my items. The delivery service seems pretty handy with two hour windows. It seems like it would be nice to have a delivery at night when we know we are going to be home. I still need to schedule it and confirm the items we need with the husband but I will be sure to let you know how it goes!

Vons gave me an exclusive promotional code (I’m giggling as I write this!) but it’s good for everyone to take advantage of.

Test it out and get $7.00 off and free delivery on your first order. Just enter in KRSTBG when you check out and you are good to go!

Has anyone ever used the Vons Home Grocery Delivery service before? How did it go? Did you like it?

New Books to Read

You would think I wouldn’t need any new books to read. I have at least 40 books in my TBR pile that I should pick up and read, I’m constantly getting library book notices from items I have on hold, and yet all these new fabulous books are coming out on a MONTHLY BASIS that I MUST HAVE. Eek!

I’m attempting to be good and simply put them on my list though. Yesterday I walked through Barnes & Noble looking for Kristan Higgin’s latest. She is an amazing writer and I NEEDED TO HAVE IT. Yet, they didn’t have it anywhere. Which was so annoying.  I love Borders more than B&N but I have a gift certificate to B&N that I needed to use. Borders at least makes an effort to get new releases out on their shelves the day of release. B&N doesn’t even bother. I’ve gone to 2 or 3 stores before on release day and they won’t have them in until DAYS after. Madness!

What I did pass by was The Red Queen, the new Phillipa Gregory novel (The Boleyn Girl). Love her. Gregory writes simply amazing historical novels. Scarlet Nights which is a Jude Deveraux Edilean novel but while I adore Deveraux, I don’t really like her newest stuff as much as her older books. I passed by Waterbound by Christine Feehan (new series that goes along with the 7 Drake Sisters), Kiss Me If You Can by Carly Phillips (new series by Carly, adore her!), 3 Nights with a Scoundrel by Tessa Dare (the last of her trilogy which was SO GOOD!), Summer Brides which is a novella of some awesome authors.

There were at least 3 or 5 other ones that were authors I’ve read and enjoyed before. The ones up above? Those are authors that I LOVE. I have most all of their books and I WANT WANT WANT.  Yet, I held back.

I did end up picking Suzanne Brockman’s re-release of Infamous since I had not read it yet and Eloisa James’s Kiss of Midnight because these guys are in my treasured bookshelf. Yet I then glimpsed the line which was at least 10+ people long. So I put them back.

I am looking forward to Mockingjay by Susanne Collins. It’s the end of her trilogy and if you haven’t read Hunger Games… you are missing out. It’s young adult but it ROCKS.

Also coming out is another Fool’s Gold novel by Susan Mallery and I just finished up her first two which were great! I see that Midnight Crystal by Jayne Castle, Love Me If You Dare which is Carly Phillips 2nd in her newest installment (but I would have to buy the first one, eek!), Just One Taste by Louise Edwards who is hysterically funny, the Firebrand by Susan Wiggs (great author), and tons more.

See my problem? Plus the fact that I am lately only reading one or two books a WEEK instead of seven or eight…. Means that I will probably have tons of books for my Christmas list! ha!

We are off to have tons of fun today with the family. Enjoy your weekend!