Controversial thoughts to share…A new delicious recipe…Living life on our terms…Tom’s sunrise photos…

An amazing sunrise over Trinity Beach, Australia.

Yesterday, we decided to grocery shop one day early when I needed a few ingredients to make a new favorite side dish (see recipe below) for dinner. I know. We make a new item that becomes a favorite and we make it over and over again.

When we tire of the item, we stop making it for a while to bring it up again in the future, perhaps months or a year later. Why not? Some may say, “Spread it out over time, savoring it each time.”

We do savor it each time until we don’t. Besides, we’re living life on our terms and if we want to eat the same side dish night after night, we can. That’s one of the aspects of our lives, we absolutely love. The only rules we follow are:

a.  Laws in our current location
b.  Filing and paying US taxes

Self-imposed rules:
a.  Follow our personal moral code: kindness, consideration, honesty, and integrity
b.  Health as a priority:  good food, good sleep, exercise, Vitamin D from sunlight, and a positive attitude
c.  Harmony in our relationship with one another, those we love, and all others
d.  Spirituality based on our personal beliefs, not imposed upon others
e.  Tolerance of each other and the lives and choices of others
f.   Making a difference in the lives of others less fortunate, not writing about it, bragging/talking about it. 

Of course, there are the obvious self-imposed rules of paying bills, keeping our environment clean and tidy, cooking meals, doing laundry. Those are a “given.”

In reviewing these “rules” in our lives, we see no rule that says we can’t eat the same salad, the same side dish or the same snack day after day, meal after meal. We like it that way.

I’m always impressed by how well he captures sunrises and sunsets.

So much of our old lives were dictated by expectations; some self-imposed, others imposed by others, and many imposed upon us by society either globally or locally. 

If we didn’t follow suit on some of these expectations, there were often some type of consequences; some imposed upon ourselves via guilt and bad feelings and others imposed upon us by rejection or the obvious disappointment of others, spoken or unspoken.

Example: What if we stayed inside on Halloween with the lights out? What if we didn’t buy the Christmas wreath from the neighbor’s son? What if we didn’t attend a friend’s daughter’s gift opening the morning after the wedding? What if we didn’t attend a family gathering at a campground that included a two-hour drive each way? What if we didn’t help a friend move?

It changes so quickly.

Does not doing these things make us selfish people? In our old lives, we thought so. Now, as we look back at all of these types of situations we realize we may have and could have chosen to respond differently, living life on our terms while still providing a modicum of love and caring to those around us. 

In essence, we did too much, at times as a result of love and desire to please and at other times due to a sense of responsibility. At other times, we didn’t do enough. Isn’t that really how it is? Aren’t we all similar in this manner and yet, we seldom, if ever, discuss it and most certainly, never write it down?

The magic is almost gone.

The simplicity of our lives now is difficult to describe. In step and in sync with one another, life is infinitely easy.  Guilt is not within our realm of feelings. The day to day responsibilities we bear are easy to fulfill with nary a moment or feeling of pressure or discomfort. 

Our biggest challenge is the upcoming two travel days beginning on September 7th, ending on the 8th when we land on the island of Vanua Levu, Fiji. Sure, there are ups and downs, annoyances, flight changes, waiting in lines, and an occasional feeling of uneasiness and uncertainty. We wouldn’t be human if we didn’t have these apprehensions.

And then, the sun appears.  Our world is truly magical.

Overall, living life on our terms wherever we may be is for us, the ultimate choice for happiness in these remaining years of our lives. Some have criticized us for making these choices. How could we leave those we love behind? We didn’t choose this life to leave those we love behind. We chose this life to move ourselves forward.

Here’s the above-mentioned recipe:

Jess’ Low Carb Mushroom Casserole  
15.6 carb grams for the entire recipe  
Easy prep 
12 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced
1/4 cup chopped onion  
1/2 stick grass-fed butter  
1/3 cup heavy cream  (not half and half)
1 large free-range egg  
2 large free-range egg yolks  
1 cup grated Swiss or, if not available grated mozzarella
Salt, pepper, garlic salt

Preheat oven to 375F, 190C. Line a medium-sized baking pan with parchment paper or coat generously with butter.

Saute the mushrooms and onion in the butter. Add the seasonings and cook for about 4 minutes., stirring occasionally.  In a bowl, combine the remaining ingredients. Cool the mushrooms and onions for about 20 minutes and then combine all the ingredients.  Pour into the prepared baking dish. Bake 30 minutes (sometimes longer). 

Once cooled, we cut this recipe into 6 squares each having one square with dinner each of three evenings. We add a protein, veggie, and salad for a fabulous easy low carb, grain-free, starch-free meal. Last night, I had lamb chops while Tom had pork chops. With this dish as a side and another side of steamed green beans with a small number of julienne carrots, large romaine lettuce, and diced celery salad, we had a wonderful meal. 

Later in the evening, for a sweet snack we each had homemade low carb coconut macaroons. (I used the remaining eggs whites from the above recipe to use in the making of the macaroons).

                                             Photo from one year ago today, August 6, 2014:

No photos were posted on this date one year ago in Paris when we had to catch an early train to Versailles. However, we had a very busy day on the 7th which included a fabulous museum visit we’ll share tomorrow and dinner at the highly popular gourmet restaurant, Les Ombres. For more details, please click here.