TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (20)If I’m going to maintain this low-carb weight losing lifestyle…  I’ve GOT to get creative!  I thought about all the foods that used to call to me and cause me to go find them.  I say USED TO because I’m talking about FAST FOOD!!!  Cover the kids’ ears, because this could be shocking!

Got ’em covered?  Good.  Okay…  here’s what I want you to do.  Think about your favorite fast food.  Mine is the Market Fresh Turkey & Swiss Sandwich at Arby’s.  Now – what ingredients do I need to say NO to?  The bread…  I have to say NO to the bread.

As far as I can tell, the rest of that sandwich is amazing and legal.  Sliced turkey, sliced Swiss cheese, tomato, red onion and romaine lettuce.  Instead of a traditional salad dressing, I mix mayo and Dijon mustard together and put it in the salad bowl.

And here’s what it looks like:IMG_1502It’s a happy little low-carb lunch!  I didn’t use romaine lettuce because I already had iceberg.  I made this salad for a fraction of the price they charge for the sandwich at Arby’s – and I’ll have enough stuff to make this a few more times!  Yay me!  Success!

There are sub shops that will make any of their sandwiches into salads for you – but you have to ask because some of them don’t have that information posted.  Most restaurants will bend over backwards to make substitutions for you, but ask if the change will cost you extra.  Different places have different policies and it’s best to be on the safe side.  You don’t want to get a big surprise on your check at the end of the meal.emergency-309727_1280

In the KEEP MOVING department…  so far, so good.  I’m going to Planet Fitness 3 days a week and working on the treadmill for 15 minutes, the bike for 15 minutes, leg machines at 20-50 pounds, arm machines at 20-30 pounds and ab machines at 20 pounds – and those things kill me – just being honest.

I’ll never be a skinny person, but I’m doing the best I can.  There are some pretty awesome rewards for being consistent with diet and exercise.  I don’t know why I doubted that it applied to me, but…  surprise – it does!  I’m pretty happy and very pleased that my blood glucose levels and A1c are in normal range.  🙂






Bagels originated in Southern Germany but were eaten by Jewish families in Poland in the early 17th century.  It was a matter of convenience really, bagels could be baked very quickly so they ate them on Saturday evenings after the Sabbath.  It sort of reminds me of our sandwich night after Sunday night church service.  By the time service is over, you are hungry and want something fast but good.

It’s NATIONAL BAGELS & LOX DAY!!!  If you’re not familiar with lox, it is thinly sliced cured salmon that is spread on the bagel.  It’s an iconic Jewish-American dish.  It was once only found in New York delis, but it’s now available all across the country.  Our local deli here in Wichita even has it!  Woo-hoo!!!

Lox symbolizes the saltiness of tears and was invented by America.  In the 1800’s the transcontinental railroad began shipping barrels of salted salmon to the East Coast.  Bagels symbolize the circle of life.

Take part in this Jewish-American tradition and enjoy a tasty bagel topped with cream cheese, lox, red onion, tomato and capers!

Have you heard the word “schmear”???  That’s the Yiddish word for “grease” which back years ago was slang for a bribe, as in greasing someone’s palm.  But today, a “schmear” in a bagel baker’s world is anything that can be spread on a bagel.  They don’t spread – they “schmear”. 

The bagel, an unsweetened doughnut with rigor mortis.  – Beatrice & Ira Freeman

Why is there a hole in the middle?  It’s thought that bagels were sold off of a dowel on street corners – and it made it easy to tote them around.  And why are they called bagels?  The original name was derived from the Yiddish –  beygel from the German dialect word beugel, meaning ring or bracelet.

Was that lox…  or box???  This is a few years old – but so cute.

I wanted to see if I could find something a little more healthy than cream cheese – and found this recipe online:


I think that might be pretty good.  Avocado still has fat in it, but it’s healthier fat than cream cheese!

All this talk of bagels and lox is making me – ya know…  hungry!!!  🙂






 Worries go down better with soup.  – Jewish Proverb

Either fortunately or unfortunately, depending on your point of view, it’s a fact that food provides a certain degree of comfort when we are faced with circumstances that we have no control over – such as a death in the family.  What do people automatically do when they hear a friend or neighbor has lost a loved one?  They show up – with food.  It’s a thoughtful gesture and so nice because then you don’t have to worry about preparing meals for the relatives that will surely come to park in your house for a few days.

I’ve always been an emotional eater.  Today my dad has been in heaven for 26 years.  You’d think after such a long time I’d be “over” it.  Well, I’ve moved on, but I still miss him like crazy – and newsflash – I always will.  I’ll be an unapologetic emotional eater today with a grilled cheese sandwich (or two) and tomato bisque soup on the menu for lunch or dinner for sure.

Today is SANDWICH DAY!  When my dad died, the rest of the family rallied around my mom and I like real troopers.  We had the entire Park City Nazarene Church helping us and that was great.  Two memories have stuck with me as I think back.  The church planted a tree in my dad’s honor – it was so little 26 years ago.  Today it’s a large shade tree in front of the church.  The second memory is my husband making grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato bisque soup for our lunch the day after the funeral.  Everyone shows up for the funeral and the funeral dinner – but the day after is when things begin to hit home – and you really begin to feel the loss.

As you can imagine, my mom didn’t want to eat much and really I didn’t either.  There is just something so comforting about a grilled cheese sandwich and tomato bisque soup.  I’ve been married to a man who will not prepare one without the other, therefore, I can no longer eat a grilled cheese sandwich without tomato bisque soup!  The sandwich is  gooey and fun like fuzzy socks on a hardwood floor and the soup is so cozy and warm, like an old comfy sweatshirt.

I remember being so grateful to be taken care of like that – and it meant the world to me that my husband took care of my mom.  He made sure we were both keeping our strength up.  I guess that’s what love does, isn’t it?  ❤




How cute is that? I especially like it when little brother looks over at big brother for cues – when he forgets the words… LOL!!! ❤

Sometimes when I’m alone in the house and I fix a simple little meal like, say, a turkey bacon, iceberg lettuce and succulent vine-ripened home-grown tomato sandwich on whole wheat, I’m tempted to eat without saying grace first. Before you start giving me mean glances over your glasses, hear me out.

Now, it’s not that I am not grateful for my meal. I was actually “checked” about it and I did go ahead and pray. It was not a prayer that lasted more than a few seconds, but I prayed over my meager meal.

An event happened a long time ago that made me think twice about praying:

Our youth group was at a pizza parlor after church one Sunday night. We were getting ready to eat when of course the youth leader told us to bow and pray. When we finished praying, a stranger walked up to our table and said, “I’m so impressed to see young people praying before they eat nowadays and to encourage you to pray more often, I’m going to pay for your pizzas!”

Well, of course that made all of us very happy! I’ve never seen anyone do that again, but I’ve heard others tell similar stories of how meals were paid for as a sort of “reward” for praying. It is just one of those situations that happened, but impressed me for life!

 It is a comely fashion to be glad; Joy is the grace we say to God.  – Jean Ingelow

No one should ever pray hoping their bill at the restaurant gets paid! That’s not a proper motivation to pray! We pray because it’s the right thing to do. If you are in doubt about whether it’s silly to pray over a little BLT sandwich or not, just do it. It’s better to pray when you don’t have to than to skip the prayer and get indigestion. I’m kidding, if you don’t pray you won’t get indigestion. Our youth leader used to tell us our food would not digest well if we didn’t say a blessing over it. I don’t know, there may be a bit of truth in that statement.   🙂