Skip to main content


Showing posts from August, 2012

After All That, I Didn't Run

That’s right. I didn’t run the half marathon. I developed an infection that had me in bed for a few days this week. Between the symptoms of the infection and the side effects of the antibiotics I was not a happy camper. And I was nowhere near optimal health and training condition. So I decided not to run. Running while being a little less than perfectly conditioned didn’t seem so bad, but running while being exhausted before I even started the race seemed like a stupid thing to attempt. If this were the only half marathon available to me, I might have done it anyway. But with another one coming up in a month I have time to get healthy and get back on track. Mike lost a whole month of training due to illness, so he didn’t run either. We are a little sad that germs brought us down.

Chinese Peanut Sauce

This was originally published at What I Eat on 13 September 2007. We were living in Walnut Creek, California at the time. 

Muffin is the only toddler I’ve heard of who likes broccoli. Although she likes it simply steamed with a bit of lemon juice (Lemon-eze here in Hyderabad) and ground black pepper, I like to make this peanut sauce for her everyone once in a while as a treat. 

Look for Local Notes at the end of the post to see how I modify the recipe for Hyderabad. 

All this produce from Planet Organics is sending me on searches for new recipes. When I first saw the price of their broccoli, I thought it was outrageous. But I decided to get some anyway. Holy cow! The amount of broccoli they give you is enormous. It's about 3 times the amount I usually buy for a week. Even though I don't love broccoli, it's good for me and I'm trying to eat more of it. And Mike loves it. So, since one of the points of getting this produce delivery is to introduce more fruits and veggies i…

Motivation Monday -- Role Model

"One of the most important things we do for our children is to present them with a version of adult life that is appealing and worth striving for."

Instead of a picture, this week my inspiration comes from a quote at the end of an opinion piece in the New York Times. Since Muffin came along part of why I run is to be a good role model for her. And I've realized that being a healthy, active role model is one thing, but running has become part of a larger role model plan. With Mike's career, we're not always going to be living in places where women are equal to men. It's up to me to show Muffin how to be a strong woman while navigating through those difficult areas, also while trying to figure it out myself. It's safe for me to run in certain parks at certain times of day wearing certain clothes. That's better than not being able to run at all, right? I'm showing Muffin that we have choices, even when society seems oppressive.

I'm running a hal…

Rosemary Roasted Pork Tenderloin

This was originally published at What I Eat on 6 September 2007. We were living in Walnut Creek, California, at the time. With my recent trip to the Minerva Pork Shop in Secunderabad, we have a lot of pork tenderloin in the freezer so I went through my old posts for some ideas of what to do with it. Look for Local Notes at the end of the post to see how I modify the recipe for Hyderabad. 

A couple years ago I came home with a handful of fresh, beautiful rosemary from farmers' market and had no idea what to do with it. (I tend to make impulse produce purchases.) A Google search for rosemary recipes led me to this one on
2 pork tenderloins, about 2 pounds [1 kg]
3 tablespoons fresh rosemary, or about 1 tablespoon dried
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, halved
salt and pepper to taste

PREPARATION: Preheat oven to 400°. Line a baking pan with foil, spray with cooking spray and place in oven. Trim fat from pork tenderloins and butterfly the meat, cutting t…

Motivation Monday -- No More Time for Excuses

I do love running, even though it hasn't been a top priority for the last couple weeks. All that changes today though. Later this afternoon. I didn't quite get all my homework finished before I went to bed last night so when I woke up early this morning I headed for my laptop rather than my running shoes. But I have a plan for today. More homework while Muffin is at school. A nap while Muffin naps (I was up late trying to finish up my work, too.). And then a three-mile run around the park with the jogging stroller this afternoon. I posted my intention to run to the playgroup I belong to so between that and the blog, it's out there for everyone to know about and hold me accountable to showing up and doing it.

Have the driver do the grocery shopping and have the housekeeper make something hearty and healthy. I have these resources, yet after how many years of living abroad now (four going on five?) I still haven't mastered using them to my full advantage.

I'm runnin…

Super Mommy

I'm pretty proud of myself this week. I prioritized my time, I delegated tasks, and I made this:

and I finished making this:

all for Muffin's birthday party on Saturday afternoon.

How to Make a Very Hungry Caterpillar Party in India
I have to thank Pinterest for the cake idea. I pinned it months ago and kept the idea tucked away in my head, thinking about how to make this in India.

First, when the Consulate placed an order with the commissary in Delhi, I ordered "one" food coloring box. Due to the confusing nature of the order form, I ended up with "one case" of food coloring boxes. I also bought one case of real vanilla extract (intentionally -- I use it a lot for baking) because you can't buy real vanilla in Hyderabad and the fake stuff sold here tastes awful.

Next, when we where on vacation in the United States in May, I tried the King Arthur flour gluten-free cake mix and I liked it a lot better than the Betty Crocker gluten-free cake mixes I'd …

Hyderabad Highlights and Lowlights

It’s bidding season in the Foreign Service, the time of year when people start to think about where their next assignment is. The FS bloggers are getting together to provide information about their favorite and least-favorite things about their locations. Jill is graciously compiling everyone’s blog posts at The Perlman Update in a couple weeks. I’ve chosen to put together some of my blog posts from our time in Hyderabad. 


1. Yes, there is steak in India.

2. Baby loves motorcycles.

3. Fresh poultry and fresh produce.

4. Holidays! Diwali! Can be a "con" if you don't like fireworks. Holi! Kite Festival!

5. Vacation in India can be great.


1. Vacation in India can be exhausting.

2. The dangers of running outside. And here, too.

3. Mold. This post is from last year and I am frantically trying to stay ahead of the mold this rainy season.

4. Shopping isn't always fun.

5. Getting our cat in was a hassle.

There are a lot of difficulties here and I preferred Burundi,…

Motivation Monday – Ham and Birthday

“Ham on biscuits, ham on toast. Ham is the thing that I like most.” Muffin’s favorite parts of Bread and Jam for Francis are the songs that she sings about jam. Replace “jam” for “ham” and you have our weekend. Between a trip to the Minerva Pork Shop, where the butcher fills Muffin up with so many free samples of ham and salami that I feel obligated to buy some each time we’re there, and Mike bringing home a pack of parma ham from the Swiss Butchery in Singapore, I was feeling like Francis by Sunday afternoon. “I know how a ham jar feels. Full… of… ham.”

And we have a lot of cupcakes coming up later this week. I need to run more.

I DVR’d the women’s marathon on Sunday and was able to watch most of it this morning. Muffin woke up early but Mike got her back to sleep. I was already awake so I got up to drink some coffee and watch the marathon. I can’t believe they ran a whole marathon in less time than it will take me to run half that distance.

I woke up this morning with the nagging f…

Green Smoothies and Excuses

Last Saturday night Mike had to go out of town at the last minute and we didn’t know how long he was going to be gone. As of this writing, he’s booked on a flight for tonight. I’m keeping my fingers crossed, but we know how things can change. He was supposed to come home last night, so I had to face a disappointed little Muffin this morning when she went through her list of who is home and who is not home when she woke up.

In the past week I’ve been frantically trying to keep up-to-date with my schoolwork (thanks to a generous extension from my professor) while providing Muffin with at least the minimum requirements of food, clean clothes, school, and fun time. She is tired of being passed off to our housekeeper for a couple hours every day, but she’ll survive. I have not been running. I have not been sewing. I have not been formulating the plan I need for making dozens of cupcakes and multiple colors of buttercream frostings for Muffin’s birthday party next week. (Mike will be home …