Saturday, April 23, 2011

A small personal adventure and a thrifty Paleo tip

First off, you just have to forgive me, not only for the fact that blog posts have been thin on the ground, but also for any weirdness in this particular post.

Why, you ask?  Weirder than usual, Blue?

Uh, yeah. See, as I am want, I managed to bloody hurt myself again (big eye roll) and I'm high on ibuprofen and Jack. Whee!

I was out fixing up my farrowing pen*, see, and clever natural red-shirt that I am**, I was trying to prise a bit of hog panel with the handle of a spade (say "round point shovel" if you work for the groundskeeping department of the University of South Carolina [as opposed to a "square point shovel" which I call a ... "shovel"]). Well that bastard (the spade handle) was rotten unbeknownst to me and as I was pulling it toward myself, it broke.

Hmm.  Thinking back on it, it would have made a FABulous YouTube vid. I'm a big, strong girl and I had my 175 lbs of brawny meat-eating bulk leant into it (or away from it, as the case may be). When the wood broke (*CRACK!* like a gunshot!) the metal blade of the spade, it's face turned away from the side of my head by about 90 degrees [so my head was turned about 90 degrees left and it's face about 90 degrees to it's right for you nerdy nerds out there] clocked me in the head.

It was interesting (in retrospect) because it was exactly like an old Warner Brother's cartoon. There was an explosion of light, like a flash bulb in my skull, and a loud hummmm, like ringing a bell. It was weird.

To be truthful, my right ear took most of the blow, so after my head cleared I gingerly felt my piercings (three on that side) and they seemed intact, so I went on working, vowing to get inside to eat some ibuprofen for the headache that I knew would arrive later.

It was only when I bent down to twist some wire and big fat red drops of blood started falling on my pliers that I realised that the edge of the spade must have cut my ear. So I had to traipse inside (grumble, grumble) and get that attended to before I could continue. Poor ol' kinda-squeamish Bodog had to clean my ear, too, because I couldn't see the cut well enough.

The funny part about all of this is that I'm not a super clumsy person by nature. Even when I weighed over 300lbs I was pretty graceful for a grotesquely fat chick. I don't slam drawers on my fingers or burn myself cooking or stick myself with the needle when doing sewing repairs. It's something about when I do fix-er-up or handyman stuff that I manage to come to grief!

UPDATE: I must have really knocked the ol' noggin good.  All this happened Thursday afternoon and I've woken up the last two mornings with the bones in my face; right jaw, right cheek, even the right side of my nose, feeling like they'd been run over in the night. Owie. Oh, and I did get the farrowing pen finished but Inky apparently decided it wasn't sufficient because she broke a pole, collapsed the shelter, and helped herself back into the pen with Green. Argh!


Ohh, I was going to tell you a thrifty tip today, wasn't I?

As you know, I'm Paleo***, and have been about 4 years now.

I'd love to tell you that I eat all free range chicken and pastured pork and organic beef, but alas I cannot.  I'm a self-employed graphic designer, my hubz, Bodog, teaches public school, and we have 5 kids. It's just not happinin right now.

We do the best we can, of course - for instance we produce our own fresh big ol' brown eggs here on the farm of which we eat 1 or 2 a day (or 3 or 4 for me - family isn't Paleo, just low carb).

ANYway, I wanted to thow out a thrifty tip for any of you Primal, paleo, caveman, ancestral,  evolutionary, ... whats the new one? ... somethingvore. Can't remember.

uhh, what was I talking about?  Oh, a thrifty Paleo tip!

Now I realise that most of my Paleo / Primal tweeps are upper middle class single young people. Many don't have kids, don't have mortgages, many of them don't even have cars. A lot of them might be financially much better off than me (able to afford pastured beef for example) but thrift isn't just about money, it's can be about time, too.  A LOT of these guys and gals are both working and going to school and a lot of them work for the man (as opposed to myself, who has the luxury of staying home).

So here's my suggestion.  It's easy to throw your meat of choice into the ol' cast iron skillet or under the broiler or into the crock pot, but veggies are harder to deal with. Many cannot be frozen satisfactorily, and even if you have the means to purchase local grown organic kale, for instance, if it goes bad in the fridge due to your lack of time to prepare it ...

So I encourage you to check out tinned vegetables as emergency fare.  Yes, we Paleos would much rather buy fresh, much rather buy local, but needs must when the devil drives, right?  Better to get those veg (if you want them) than to do without cuz you're just sick to death of frozen broccoli.

Greens are particularly good for you and do very well tinned. If you love fresh spinach on a salad, it can still get old day after day. But spinach, turnip, mustard, and collards can be found tinned, have minimal ingredients (usually just veg and salt), keep for years, and are easy peasy to heat up. Try out collards, a dark leafy green beloved of us Southerners. Heat in skillet with a chunk of ham or a dollop of bacon grease and enjoy. I eat 'em with a sprinkling of apple cider vinegar.

Please don't think that I'm suggesting tinned or frozen veg over fresh. I'm not saying give up the fresh veg if you have the time to prepare them.  I'm just saying that rather than looking with dread at a head of iceberg lettuce (Paleo but not terribly nutritious) for the third time that week, keep some tinned carrots or greens in the cupboard for grabbing.


So what about you guys?  What do you keep on hand for the dreaded "I just can't handle another salad" emergencies?


*To farrow is the act of a sow having pigs. They are usually isolated to keep the other pigs from eating the babies. The only other pig I have, my 700+ lb boar, Green, who is as long as our dining room table (abt 7 feet - no lie) has NEVER offered to eat a pig or even menace them. He is very careful and gentle.  I move the sow (Inky in case you were curious) because Green can suck up five gallons of slop in 10 minutes and Inky and piglets don't get enough!)

** Red Shirts, for those of you who are Star Trek Impared (STI, it's a serious disorder). Briefly (sorry, I'll try), the crew of the Federation ships are either Command (gold shirts), Science and Medical (blue shirts), or Engineering and Security(red shirts). In the Original Series a crowd of the red shirts would all go down with Kirk and Spock and MCoy and promptly get killed. Thus it was dangerous to be a red shirt.  Well, with my mechanical, fix-it bent and Scots/German heritage I cannot deny (as much as I lurve my boy Zachary Quinto as Spock in the new film *droooool*) that on a theoretical starship in the future that I'd be one of the grunts crawling about amongst the grease and wires keeping the ship going.

***Long story short for those of you unfamiliar: we beleive that the way h. sapiens evolved to eat over the 3 million year prior to the advent of agriculture is best suited to us. Briefly: whole foods, unprocessed foods, meat, animal fat, vegetables, some fruit, nuts, seeds.  No grains, starches, legumes, and many Paleos are dairy free as well (I am not - I'm lacto Paleo). We have lost weight, gotten fit, even reversed disease by living this lifestyle.

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posted by MrsEvilGenius @ 10:19 am   4 comments