Sunday morning, I had the pleasure of dining and chatting with the ladies of Women Who Brunch and enjoying Life Coach Caroline Zwick‘s presentation on how to make goal setting effective and fun. Perfect for late January, when we’re still in the beginning stages of formulating and carrying out New Years Resolutions! So yes, brunch + resolutions = bresolutions.
The group met up at cozy Soho spot Jack’s Wife Freda. The menu was full of delicious things (green shakshuka, Mediterranean breakfast, rosewater waffle…), but I eventually decided on the soy-glazed fish a la plancha, which came over sautéed kale. It was definitely the right choice-probably the best thing I’d eaten all week.
Caroline gave us each a handout of 7 guidelines for making and meeting our goals, and the one that resonated with me most was the last: CELEBRATE YOUR ACHIEVEMENTS!!!! This has always been a really hard one for me—by the time I’ve reached a goal I set, I’m already onto climbing the next mountain. It had never occurred to me to make celebrating my successes a rule, but damn—how could I have spaced on something so important?
When we ordered a round of drinks (cava for me, of course) after eating and wrote letters to ourselves, to be sent in a few months. You’d better believe I started off with a friendly reminder to take a sec to celebrate. And to say thank you to yourself for not giving up on…yourself. For not laughing at your “crazy” ideas or “impossible” goals.
I had been planning to treat myself to a reflexology massage after the busy two weeks I have where my two clinical jobs overlap as I transition from one to the other, but instead, when I got home from brunch, I called up the Chinese bodywork place I go to and made an appointment for that afternoon. So. Damn. Good. I asked the massage therapist to focus on my scalp and shoulders. Why don’t I always do that? Also, I can’t say I’d ever had my hair pulled during a massage before, but, um. Wow. It was kind of awesome.
What is the hardest part of setting and achieving goals for you? How do you celebrate your successes?
Apparently pickiness and food jags are not just for kids. Case in point: How I like my eggs. Though I adore poached eggs, I can’t stand egg yolks that aren’t runny—When it comes to things like omelets and hard-boiled eggs, I’d rather skip the yolk altogether.
Almost two years later, I’m still doing pretty well on my 2012 New Year’s Resolution to eat more brunch (lunch for an early bird like me, but a rose by any other name…). Lately, it seems I can’t get enough of egg white omelets. After enjoying one last weekend after the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk, I went with variations on the theme this past Saturday and Sunday while out with friends who are visiting from France. What can I say—I like what I like.
Saturday at 3Forty Grill in Hoboken: spinach, shitakes, bacon, and cheddar cheese
Sunday at Osteria Cotta on the Upper West Side: 3 kinds of mushrooms, parmesan cheese
I’m sure I’ll get the itch to move on to something new eventually, but for now, I’m enjoying my brunch fix. And hey, on the other end of the spectrum, I attempted—and pulled off—a basic comfort food dish I’ve always kind of wanted to learn: meatloaf. I came across this Coconut Diaries recipe for turkey pumpkin meatloaf on another blog (sorry I can’t remember which one!) and figured it seemed idiot-proof. It was also delicious. So yeah. Balance.
What’s your favorite kind of omelet?
People sometimes ask me why I decided to become a dietitian, and my answer is always, “Family history of cancer.” Unfortunately, I was one of those kids who grew up around medical jargon. Starting from the time I was 8 or 9, one or more of my grandparents on both sides of the family were in treatment for one form of health ailment or another. 3 out of 4 have battled cancer, with both grandmother’s eventually succumbing to the illness. They were both extraordinary women—in such different ways—and sometimes I wonder what life would be like if they were still around. I wonder what I would be like! Long story short: from an early age, I was very well aware of the fact that some f***ed up sh!t happens in the human body, and I was curious to know how it all works. As a practitioner, my main goal is to help improve people’s quality of life, and though in my current job I work mainly with people who are already battling an illness, I hope to eventually work more on the preventive side.
I’ve wanted to participate in one of the American Cancer Society‘s events for a long time, so this year, I emailed my family and asked who wanted to get involved with me. So, yesterday, my mom, sister, aunt, cousin, and I all walked in this year’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk in Central Park in memory of my grandmother, Jeanne. Because we are all freakish early-to-rise peeps, we were all bright-eyed and ready to get going on those 5 miles at 8 a.m.
(Yes, I know one of my eyes is bigger than the other and I always squint the left one in photos—thanks, genetics!). The walk itself was gorgeous! Even though it was a tiny bit chilly, the sun was shining, and we got to enjoy the beauty of the park amidst a sea of good vibes and silly pink wigs and outfits. Since I don’t own a single pink item of clothing, I painted my nails fuchsia. My sister was rocking some pretty sweet pink sneaks! With such lovely ladies to talk to in such gorgeous scenery, the miles flew by!
we headed to a local cafe for brunch. It was lovely.
My mom, sis, and I headed to a wine tasting in the afternoon which was on roses. It was part of New York City Food & Wine Festival, which benefitted the Food Bank for New York City. We had a great time! As usual, we may have had a bit too much fun describing the wines to each other. Here are a few examples of what happens when you take me to a wine-tasting:
All in all, it was a great day!
Have you ever participated in an event like a charity walk or festival? Do you like rose wine? What was the best part of your weekend?
I don’t know about you, but I find some weekends pass by without a chance to savor a damn thing. Fortunately, this weekend has been quite the opposite.
After a Friday night spent drinking wine and painting pottery with some lovely ladies, I had Saturday brunch with a friend at Mojave in Astoria where we got to sit outside in the sun. The rest of the day was spent with my notebook in various outdoor “happy places” in the city. I snapped a few pictures in Riverside Park because it was just too gorgeous not to share a glimpse, but for the most part, I just tried to unplug.
Sunday so far involves yoga, catching up with a friend who’s visiting NYC from way to far away, and then I’m celebrating some Libra birthdays over dinner with my family. I love this time of year. It’s a great chance to soak up the last bits of warm weather and reflect on where you are and where you’ve been and where you want to get to next. And how.
What have you been up to this weekend?
I don’t know what it’s like in other parts of the country, but New York City restaurants seem to take food allergies very, very seriously. A lot of places will “flag” diners with allergies so that kitchen and service staff know not to get that plate near a particular allergen.
I spent Sunday with my mom. We had plans to head to the Cloisters after brunch, which was enjoyed at The Smith near Lincoln Center. The crowd was an interesting mix of Fashion Week folks and people who’d just finished the Komen Walk for the Cure. Talk about a juxtaposition! We also got a kick out of the little red allergy flag that came with my scrambled egg whites.
Great way to spend a Sunday!
What was the best part of your weekend?
So far, this weekend has been weird but still relaxing…
My grandfather ended up having to have surgery Saturday morning, so I spent a lot of the day in keep-busy mode, but fortunately, I had plans that got me out of the house and had me wandering around Central Park sipping an iced coffee and listening to a She & Him soundcheck. By the time afternoon began to transition into evening, I’d gotten word that my grandfather had come out of surgery and was doing well.
I started this morning with a great (and free!) yoga class and am looking forward to some brunch happenings in a bit. The heat wave in NYC continues, so I’ll probably drink my weight in mL of water again and sporting the usual spf 70.
How’s your weekend going? How do you stay cool in a heat wave?
I go through phases sometimes where I feel the need to take breaks from social media because whenever I log onto Facebook it seems like everyone is going on more vacations, having more sex (or so I—probably wrongly—assume from status updates about saccharine couple-y things), and eating more brunch than me.
But then I go through phases where I’m too busy eating brunch and having sex and (pretending I’m) on vacation to care. The pendulum swings one way and then the other and then the other…or however the saying goes.
Though I’m in between these two modes right now (aka Facebook doesn’t bother me that much but I still have time for it), I appreciated this Glamour magazine Do’s & Don’ts of Eating Brunch. As an early riser, “brunch” is usually straight-up lunch for me, but calling it brunch makes me feel like I’m living that Big-City Life or something. 17-year-old me would think my 27-year-old self was super-lame for waking up so damn early on weekends, but hey, DNA.
A few of my personal brunch Do’s & Don’t’s:
- Water before coffee. Coffee before booze, especially if you order drinks before deciding what to eat—it’s easier to make good decisions (food-related and otherwise) when your head is clear. Whether I order alcohol depends on whether I have anything in my stomach and what else I have to do that day. I usually skip the mimosa (the OJ is way too sweet) in favor of plain sparkling wine or a bellini—peach puree and champagne are lovely together. A bloody mary can be a good choice too, as long as you keep in mind that you’re likely getting a lot of sodium in there.
- Eat for energy—I usually choose my meal based on what I think will help me feel energized and ready to take on the rest of the day. I’m an easy sell when it comes to anything with poached eggs and veggies. Bonus points for avocado. I also try to go for things that involve mixed greens as a side. A mix of carbs, protein, and healthy fat helps keep me satisfied.
- If you’re craving bacon, order bacon. If you don’t, you’re just going to be thinking about it all day/week/whatever. Ignoring a craving sets up up for feeling deprived and overdoing it later.
Is it “brunch” or “lunch” for you? What do you usually order?