New name, new adventures!

Im still here! It’s been a while since I last did a post, so its likely you thought I had moved to a remote location or dropped off the face of the earth. But I’m still here, I’ve just been crazy busy. A lot has happened in the last few months..

It’s been a pretty full on time, but amazing! Planning and organising my very DIY wedding. Jimmy proposed 2 years ago and after 10 years together we finally tied the knot on the 24th of June. So in the lead up, I was frantic making signs, creating decorations, planning the menu, the order of service, making children’s activity books and building a bar all in preparation for the big day.

I know everyone says this, but it really was the best day ever. We had such an amazing day surrounded by our family and friends. It was a day filled with fun, love and a lot of food. A hell of a lot of food!!

We basically planned our day mostly around the food as that is our favourite thing in life! We put a lot of thought into the menu for the day, and the other bits of food being offered. Jimmy and I came up with the ideas for all the dishes for the day and the venue turned it into a delicious reality. This is what we had..

Arrival nibbles..
-Flatbread & Dips – Baba Ganoush, Tzatziki, Hummus
-Lamb Kooa Skewers
-Beef Meatballs, Broad Beans, Lemon
-Prawns with Chermoula
-Marinated Feta
-Pickled Chilli’s
-Butternut Falafel
-Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes
-Roast Carrots, Coriander Seeds & Garlic Gazpacho Shots

Main event food
Starters
-Chargrilled squid with fennel & lime salad.
-Watermelon, feta, mint and toasted pine nuts. V
-Warm honey chicken with cauliflower, pomegranate and roasted hazelnuts.
Mains
-Pan fried sea bass fillet with fattoush salad and watercress butter.
-Tahini baked aubergine with yogurt, Za’atar, a crispy filo parcel, asparagus and halloumi. V
-Lamb cutlets with walnuts, fig and goats cheese salad.
Sharing accompaniments for all mains
-Tenderstem broccoli and sesame.
-Chickpeas, rice and lentils.
Desserts
-Honey panna cotta with grilled peaches and pistachios.
-Roasted pineapple, coconut ice-cream and mint.
-Dark chocolate meringue with caramelised orange and mascarpone.

Followed by the most amazing cakes from Modern Baker in Summertown, Oxford.
http://modernbaker.com

Jimmie and Sophie-291.jpg

We had an orange and almond cake, chocolate moringa cake and vanilla berry cake. All made without refined sugars or flours. They were incredible!

Then anyone still hungry at midnight, got to feast on BBQ jerk chicken, BBQ veg skewers and some naughty chips!

After our incredible wedding, we headed to Lake Annecy in the French alps. 2 weeks of swimming in the lake, soaking up the sun, hiking, cycling, sleeping in and eating delicious food alfresco.

We mostly ate at our apartment, enjoying tasty salads, plates of “bits” and the occasional hot meal, sitting in our garden there. But we ventured into town for a couple of meals, including a totally indulgent burger. We discovered the most amazing artisan coffee shop, tucked down a back street. Possibly the best coffee I’ve ever had!
http://www.brumes-annecy.fr

When we were away, I enjoyed loads of cheese, wine, croissants, salami and all the rest! And I discovered I am in a new found mental state of being able to truly enjoy every mouthful. Without feeling guilty, or wanting to punish myself through exercise or have an “extra clean” day the following day. It’s incredibly liberating to just enjoy these treats for what they are, and let yourself continue to absorb that pleasure instead of it fading and being replaced with regret and guilt.

I’ve come to the personal understanding that it is good for me to enjoy these moments of eating or drinking things that I don’t usually have, because of exactly that! I don’t usually have them. I found it amazing to notice how I didn’t physically feel rubbish afterwards when I had let go of the mental torture I would have previously created.

80:20 is a term I often hear people say when talking about their dietary lifestyle. 80% of the time, I do eat well, wholesome, healthy, mostly organic, unrefined, real, good food. 20% of the time, I eat and drink whatever (to an extent, there are certain things I will never eat again, knowledge is power). That works for me and its what I do. But I have learnt to feel good and enjoy that 20%, and also to say Fuck it, when I occasionally go beyond that 20%.

I am human, I am healthy, I am strong, I feel pretty good. And I want to enjoy my life, so on a rare occasion I may be more 50:50. It’s not often, so hey ho!

Not only has this mental freedom opened up my awareness of myself and what I eat and my relationship with food. It has also set me off into thinking about my dreams, my career and my future, as well as my husbands. It’s made me really think about what I want to do.

For a long while I have known what I would like to study and become but I hadn’t felt mentally ready to take the necessary steps to get started until now.

More on that in my next blog post..

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