My birthday is on Monday. I'm turning 28 on the 28th. Last year was the best birthday I've had since I was little, when my mom used to bake my birthday cakes. This year will be different, since it will be my first birthday out of New York City in five years! I'm still adjusting to the move (and I've appreciated all your comments and support), and am just beginning to feel like a normal person again. However, living at home with your parents can feel a bit like being in a time warp. Some days I wake up and wonder if New York was just a dream. But at 28 (almost), I am definitely not the same person I was the last time I lived here. And as my friend pointed out, "You wouldn't be where you are without NYC...a tiny piece of it is in everything you do."
Since I've been home, I've been having a green smoothie or vegetable juice every day. My parents get local vegetables from their food coop every Monday, and I love having an abundance of fresh veggies to cook with. While being home has often triggered my binge eating in the past (which I know from my clients is pretty common), this time it seems to have calmed my need to overeat. Instead I've been listening to my body and giving it what it wants (apparently a lot of vegetables). The result is finally losing those pounds I gained months ago. (Well, most of them; I've still got a few to go.) My headaches, while not gone, are at a much lower level than they've been in months. And on Tuesday, thanks to my mom, I'll be starting acupuncture to see if I can get them to go away completely. My goal for this summer was to heal my body (or at least begin to) before moving to Seattle, and while I have a long way to go, I finally feel like I'm getting somewhere.
As for my birthday? I convinced my parents we should go to P.F. Chang's to eat from their gluten-free menu with my grandma tomorrow. It's a bit of a drive, but I think it's worth it. I went there for the first time a few months back, and I loved it! No plans for Monday, but I'm thinking this birthday just wouldn't be complete without a real birthday cake. Last year I got to try Babycakes cupcakes for the first time. But this year, I'd love to make a fabulous gluten-free, dairy-free birthday cake. Because my immune/digestive system seems to have gone whacky this past year, I also need it to be nut and coconut free. Maybe I'll just call it a "Free Cake." So that's where you come in. If you know of a great gluten-free, dairy-free, nut-free, coconut-free cake recipe, can you pass it along? And if you simply have a cake recipe that you love, gluten-free or not, and you think it's worthy of being adapted, pass that along too. Maybe it will be my next baking project. I could look this up on the internet of course, but I always learn more from you, my dear readers, than I do from google.
P.s. I'm leaving you with an entertaining parody of a Lady Gaga song. It has nothing to do with food, but was a great way to start my day. If you need a laugh, definitely watch this. My sister and her husband both work at High Tech High in San Diego, and the staff there made this video. Watch for my sister. She's the Madonna look-alike.
Somehow I don't think this is what my high school teachers did when the kids went home.
High Tech High Music Video