I am so ready to snap out of this funk I've been in lately.
I know it's common for people to have seasonal depression in the winter months, but it usually happens to me in the summer. I've written before about the fact that I've had depression for the majority of my life, but for some reason it gets worse during the summer.
I keep reminding myself that fall is right around the corner, and that is my very favorite time of year, so I'm hoping that I'll start feeling better. Today was just a really rough day, for no reason at all. The kids were acting how they usually do (fighting constantly with each other, tattling, and asking for snacks all day); I didn't have a lot on my "to do" list today (all I really had to do was laundry); and I even have a book to read, that I've been looking forward to (Divergent).
But for some reason, I was just feeling really down. When it came time to make dinner, I immediately thought of Jerry's Chicken Casserole Surprise.
When I was pregnant with Noah--not far along, just a couple of months--I went to the bathroom and noticed that I was spotting a little. My mom had a miscarriage with her first pregnancy, and I was so upset that the same was happening to me. The doctor's office was closed, and there wasn't anything they would have been able to do anyway, since I was just a couple of months along.
I was really worried and upset, and just didn't want to do anything. Jerry had no idea what to do either, and to make me feel better, he decided to make dinner. Jerry is FAR from being a chef--he is the type that can somehow manage to burn water. He didn't even ask me any questions; he just picked a recipe from one of the three cookbooks we had at the time, and tried to follow it.
It was a casserole of chicken, egg noodles, and a creamy, cheesy sauce. He dished each of us up a bowl of it, and told me it was "Jerry's Chicken Casserole Surprise". I asked him what the surprise part was, and he responded, "I don't know, I thought that all casseroles are called 'something-something-surprise.'"
At the time, I couldn't really eat it. I was just too worried about the baby, and I picked at the casserole. I can remember it so well, sitting at the table with Jerry after having cried for a couple of hours, and feeling the love from him. He had no idea how to help me, but he tried by making a casserole.
Thankfully, nothing was wrong with my pregnancy, and Noah was born the following July, very healthy. I've only made the casserole a couple of times since Jerry made it that day, and it's always when I'm feeling very down. It is the ultimate "comfort food" for me. Today was one of those days, and I made the casserole for dinner.
Jerry's Chicken Casserole Surprise
1 lb. chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
12 oz. egg noodles
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
8 oz. sour cream
8 oz. shredded cheese (whatever you have on hand--in his original dish, he used jack cheese)
About 20 Ritz crackers, crushed
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the pasta and (raw) chicken. Cook until the pasta is done, and drain. In a 9x13 casserole dish, combine the soups, sour cream, and cheese. Add the cooked pasta and chicken to the casserole dish. Top with the crushed Ritz crackers. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
I know it isn't a very healthy recipe, but it's healthy for my mind--and it really does taste good!
So remember when I wrote about doing some short term goals, rather than my 30-in-30 list? I planned on doing that on the 19th (my 3-year weight loss anniversary), but I totally forgot to list some goals. I've been thinking about how I want to approach it, and I've come up with a solution that I hope will help keep me focused on just a couple of tasks, rather than a huge list.
I'm going to do three weekly goals--one food related goal, one fitness related goal, and one miscellaneous goal.
Since I have a habit of starting things on Wednesdays, tomorrow will start Day 1 of the first week. Here are my goals for Week 1:
Food--Log my food into SparkPeople every single day, whether I eat well or not.
Fitness--Do the Wii Active twice, in addition to my scheduled runs.
Misc--Finish the sewing project my sister asked me to do.
Being the nerd that I am, I even made a little checklist on my dry-erase board so that I can see my goals on a daily basis. I love being able to check things off a list!
I think making weekly goals like this will be much easier to keep track of! I did something like this throughout my weight loss, and once I hit maintenance, I stopped doing it. My plan is to post new goals every Tuesday, and on Wednesday, write about how I did on the previous week's goals. (Notice I said that's my plan--who knows how long it will last!)
10 more days until I go to Minnesota for the Women Rock Minnesota Half-Marathon!! I'm very excited to get away for a couple of days, and even more excited that Renee is coming with me.