Stream of Consciousness- Food

It’s funny that this week’s theme is food. It has been on my mind a lot lately. I recently did a post about being thankful for it. I remember going through picky phases as a kid and not wanting to eat certain foods. My mom would tell me about children starving that would be delighted to eat out of the garbage.

That struck a cord when I realized these weren’t fictitious people she was making up to guilt me into eating my spinach, quiche and gravy smothered chicken.ย ย It made me think about those children, want to help them. I wanted to find a way to freeze my left overs, maybe even purposely eat half of my food instead of all of it to be able to feed them.

My eyes were opened and I began to realize that the starving children weren’t only in Africa. There were people starving in the city we lived in. Over the years I volunteered in soup kitchens, signed up to pack meals for children to take home that didn’t eat meals outside of the food provided for them at school breakfast and lunch Monday to Friday. I am very thankful to be able to go to a store and chose what I want to eat out of craving, desire and nutrition. I especially love to cook on the weekend when I have time and I can go to the store and pick out the ingredients to go home and take my time and put all of my love into the dish I serve my family. I love the aroma that floods the house from the kitchen, the way it makes your mouth water and stomach growl in anticipation of the meal we share. I enjoy the experience not just of filling our stomachs but sitting at the table together, talking, laughing, and being together. And of course I enjoy the food that I put so much time, love and effort into making.

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Delicious Lebanese meal- meat free except for the three small pieces of chicken. Everything else was much better, didn’t miss the meat at all.

These days when I think of food, I’m in a transition. My body has started to crave less meat and more fruits and vegetables. It’s going on three weeks since I stopped eating sweets (for the most part- maybe a small cookie here and there). Last weekend was meat free at my retreat with the exception of fried fish for dinner. This week I had several meat free days and had tuna and chicken a couple of days. I know that if I drop meat like a hot potato that I won’t last. The power of the mind, if you tell me I can’t have something I want it more. So I’m changing my thought process. Instead of not being able to have it, I just want to reduce my consumption and see where it goes.

I’m interested in the argument that humans aren’t intended to be omnivores. My eyes were opened to the treatment of animals that wind up on my plate. I’m intrigued by the notion of being more in tune with my mind and body by excluding meat. These are really the main factors for me entertaining the vegetarian lifestyle the second time around. I tried it once before a few years ago but allowing myself fish and I did pretty good for about four months until Thanksgiving rolled around and I caved, it was too much and I wasn’t ready. This time around it has been more of a process and I’m hopeful it will become a lifestyle.

This is part of the Saturday Stream of Consciousness series hosted by Linda. I found this by way of the February Love Is In Da Blog challenge I’ve participated in which will unfortunately be coming to a close as of Monday. Thank you for reading. I enjoy your feedback and thoughts, so don’t be afraid to leave a comment- I’ll respond as soon as I can.

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24 thoughts on “Stream of Consciousness- Food

  1. A thoughtful post Niki. We eat a fairly balanced diet but I’m also trying to cut down more on meat and incorporate more vegetables and fresh fruit. Luckily it’s fairly easy in summer, though I have to say I’m guilty of probably having too much sugar in my diet.

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    1. Yeah I hear ya! I have a serious sweet tooth but I don’t crave it as much now that I’ve given it up. There’s nothing more beautiful than an array of vibrant colored fruits and veggies on a plate. They just look enticing I just have to make a habit out of it. I’m lucky to live in an area that it’s pretty much like spring year-round so fruits and veggies are easy to come by. If they weren’t I think frozen is the next best thing.

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  2. Eating was just a part of life as a kid, and my mom told me the same thing. If I really didn’t like what I was eating I would tell her to just send it to them. Brat, I know. But when she would have me watch “feed the children” it would make me cry. I am so grateful for food now, I think this happens when you have a period in your life where there is very little, or none, and I am very careful about what I eat and feed my family. It breaks my heart that just about everything has something wrong with it. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ It is a true struggle, but people have to do the best with what they have. Great insights, and lovely pictures. ๐Ÿ™‚

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    1. I understand. Sometimes it takes struggle to find appreciation. I know, it’s sad that finding good quality food is so difficult. I often hope to have a house one day with my own garden. The thought just makes me happy to be able to grow my own ingredients and know how they have been grown and maintained. Hopefully that will be a reality in the not so distefuture ๐Ÿ™‚

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  3. Great Post Niki and you are right, starving children are not only in Africa, they are everywhere all over the world. I remember my mom’s mantra at the food table, she will always tell us to be grateful for every meal, because some people can’t afford even a meal, I have adopted that mantra to train my boys to be appreciative and not waste food. btw I love your delicious colorful meal there. ๐Ÿ˜€

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  4. I think you are right: You have to be gentle with yourself to do a change in eating habits. I am a pescetarian (vegetarian who still eats fish) since 2009 but have been on an off since I am a teenager. The problem was I couldn’t find enough veggie substitutes before. I met my husband and new family in 2010 who are all vegetarians, so it seemed a little like synchronicity that I started being a veggie just a few months before. I have to admit that I do not miss meat which is helpful. Good luck and lots of gentle changes for you ๐Ÿ™‚

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  5. Living alone and cooking (or not) for one has led me to a vegetarian-ish diet. I do eat meat, chicken, & fish, but veggies with cheese, beans or nuts seem to work best for me. In addition to being mindful, I do try to be grateful for the bounty on my table and in my cupboards as I know how lucky I am. Very nice post. I think you are a kind, thoughtful person.

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    1. Cooking for one can be tricky, I’d likely end up with lots of leftovers because things are generally made with intention of being served for four. Veggies, nuts and cheese are easier to prepare for one. I’m glad that you are able to practice mindfulness, I think everyone can benefit from it. Aw thank you Lori, so kind of you to say. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  6. I’m not much a meat eater, just because I’m not, just as I don’t care for cooked beets or mangoes. There are ethics (for animals and the environment) to fuss over as well, and if those are your concerns, remember that eating less meat is still helping those causes. A little meat here and there is better for you and your causes compared to meat 2-3 times a day every day ๐Ÿ™‚ That plate looks DIVINE!

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    1. My thoughts exactly. I started to convince myself that one less person eating meat wouldn’t make a difference and when I started to entertain the notion of going vegetarian, I saw an info graphic the other day demonstrating the amount of animals saved a day, month and year by one person not eating meat. Granted I didn’t look into the credentials but to me it seemed like a valid argument and I realized that there are thousands (I know much more than that) of people all over the world that restrict or limit meat consumption so while one person may not seem like much, as with everything else there is strength in numbers. I love your perspective Joey, thanks for taking the time to comment. ๐Ÿ™‚

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    1. Good for you. It’s good to keep your veggie intake up whether you eat meat or not ๐Ÿ™‚ It was so good! I was nervous when the put it on the table and there were only 3 pieces of chicken. I was like what am I going to eat?! Didn’t miss the meat at all ( my daughter ate the chicken haha).

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