Holiday Treats

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This week has been a whirlwind. It is amazing how fast the week before Christmas flies by. I have only finished 50% of my shopping. Thankfully, we don’t celebrate our family (with parents, siblings, etc) until New Year’s so I still have some time AND I will benefit from the fantastic after Christmas sales.

I am headed to a cabin in the Boundary Waters on Christmas Day for the weekend with my side of the family. Unfortunately, my husband and son will be staying home, they can’t make the trip. It is a 6 hour drive. No TV, no cell service but thankfully there is a kitchen! I am going to have to spend sometime this weekend planning what to bring so it won’t take up too much room in the car but still give me lots of food options for the weekend. I’m pretty excited for my first opportunity to cook Paleo for my family. My hubby and Lando benefit from my cooking weekly, but I haven’t had a chance to cook anything for the rest of my family (except for the amazing Thanksgiving pie.)

Recently, I made my famous Banana Chocolate Chip Protein muffins and brought them to my mom’s house. My dad had tried my Paleo Pumpkin Pie and then my paleo muffins. He said he hasn’t really tried Paleo food yet but if it is as good as the baked goods, he would be a fan. I’m looking forward to getting to cook for mom & dad for once!

This was also my last week of my first semester of college. I am on pins + needles waiting for grades to come out next week. I know where I stand in my classes but I am excited to see my GPA. Proud to have my first semester as a college student done – now on to the next 9 semesters until I get my degree! (Hopefully it won’t actually take me 5 years…. but it might.)

We had our annual work potluck + gift exchange this week, such a fun time. I am blessed to have such a great team of people to get to work. But the holiday season brings with it a lot of temptations. So far the following has been hand delivered to my office for me and the staff for a “holiday gift.”

– A Great Harvest Bread Co. gift basket; including cinnamon swirl bread, peppermint cookies, gingerbread cookies, and chocolate chip cookies.

– A Gourmet treats gift basket; full of chocolate wafers, toffee, peppermint bark and other delicious treats.

– Homemade cookies and banana bread (by the dozen)

– Homemade caramels (from my favorite vendor)

– Knotts Strawberry Shortbread cookies

One of my co-workers asked me yesterday if it is hard to be Paleo this time of year. I guess I don’t have much to compare it to because I have only been Paleo for a couple of months. But I will be honest, it is hard. Hearing everyone talking about how delicious the baked goods are, kind of sucks! Some of my favorite things to eat (pre-paleo) were present at the pot luck too including King’s Hawaiian buns for the pulled pork (I LOVE Hawaiian rolls), Tator Tot hot dish covered in cheese, and my absolute favorite – Rotello nacho cheese dip with tortilla chips.

The moments that I am not in my controlled environment (aka when I am around any food that I didn’t prepare), it does get hard. It is really hard to see everyone else, eating the food that I know taste a helluva lot better than the salad that I am eating. But the thing is, I feel good. I feel healthy. I am doing great and I don’t want to jeopardize feeling healthier than I ever have. So in the moment, when I have the debate of “I could eat it, just this once,” I have to remind myself why I am doing this….. because I am committed not just to my health but also to FEELING healthy. A couple minutes of satisfaction isn’t worth undoing all of the hard work that I have done so far. And there is a lot more to go! Being Paleo makes me happy, it brings me joy. And don’t we all need something to bring us joy?

So, if everyone could do me a favor – please only bring in sweet treats that fit within my diet…. gluten free/sugar free cookies, paleo protein bars and fresh fruit for the holidays, it would be appreciated!

Seriously though, there is so much to be thankful for this holiday season. I have an amazing husband and step-son, the best family around, a great team at work and my health. Beyond that, everything is nice to have but not necessity. I have fantastic, supportive people in my life and I couldn’t be happier. To everyone who reads this, thank you for supporting me. ❤

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Wishing you all a happy, safe holiday full of fun, family, friends and cheer!

Sincerely,

Meg

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