Hello, week № 36!
Here are my five favorites this week:
- Metro Streetcar
- Mail Order Ravioli
- Turmeric Ghee
- Anxiety Cheese
— METRO STREETCAR
This is a fun way to cross the Arkansas River – it’s sometimes convenient, always fun, and now it’s free to ride.
Many moons ago the Metro Streetcar service charged $1 to hop on – ride as long as you like. But now it’s just plain free, and you can still ride as long as you like. The whole route takes about 45 minutes to complete, and delays can include waiting for the other streetcar to get off the bridge (only one set of streetcar tracks for 2+ streetcars), and delays for downtown vehicle congestion including people who park over the white line.
PS – don’t be the person who parallel parks so far from the curb that you’re in the streetcar’s space!
Anyhoo, it’s fun. Especially if you have a train-obsessed toddler in tow. We typically ride the whole route, getting picked up and dropped off in North Little Rock. But we can easily park for free in NLR and hop off in downtown Little Rock by the Museum of Discovery…then hop on back to NLR.
The Metro Streetcar only services those two downtowns; Little Rock and North Little Rock to include crossing the Arkansas River. Two streetcars are usually running at the same time, and they always go the same direction (you can watch them in real time on the METROtrack app).
The streetcar operators are wonderful – they’re happy to share local histories and give their riders a giggle en route. It’s a fun way to relax after a meal, it’s a fun way to cross the Arkansas River, and we like sharing it with our friends and families.
— MAIL ORDER RAVIOLI
Remember when “mail ordering” was common, but online orders were scary and not trusted? Oh how times have changed!
Thanks to Goldbelly.com I can “mail order” almost anything I want to eat. I have a recurring calendar event just to log on to Goldbelly and see what’s shipping free. I usually see something that looks good, so I order it and revel in having picked a unique and affordable dinner.
This photo is a moment in time when I was unboxing our lobster & mushroom ravioli dinner from Hancock. It arrived frozen and ready to assemble. The instructions were clear and we had a stunning dinner at home for the same price as local tex-mex with drinks.
So yes, we’ve ordered lobster ravioli. But we’ve also ordered pierogis, deep dish pizzas, doughnuts, arancini, mini Belgian wafels, and Cuban empanadas. I love searching ingredients, or searching regions that I’m not super familiar with. It’s fun and costs about the same as a dinner out – except that you get to wash your own dishes! Ha! But really, it’s fun and it’s a fantastic way to shop small and eat good food.
— TURMERIC GHEE
We cook with ghee at least once a week.
When I’m sautéing onions, or getting ready to lightly pan-fry something, I never know if I’m going to reach for the olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, or ghee. But since I saw and brought home this turmeric ghee, it’s getting the most frequent use.
Our kitchen is also very spice-forward, so even though we have turmeric in the pantry, it’s just that much easier to use it more often without thinking about it. My next favorite ghee is sea salt because it also saves me one step.
The internet is full of information about why turmeric is good for you, so you don’t need me to tell you about curcumin’s anti-inflammatory powers. The short story is that it’s good for you.
If cooking with an obviously fatty substance gives you the willies – please grab a copy of Deep Nutrition by Cate Shanahan MD. She’s very anti-industrial seed oils, and I agree with her research and conclusions entirely. When I made moves to remove seed oils from my daily diet (which is very easy when you avoid processed foods and restaurants) I slowly realized that I was feeling better. It’s funny to feel better when you didn’t feel bad in the first place.
TL; DR: Industrial seed oils are no bueno, ghee is bueno.
Anti-inflammatory ghee is double bueno.
— ME THREE SIXTY
I’ll spare you from seeing my body scans that I don’t take regularly.
Many years ago I was able to get a body composition and metabolic analysis with a BodPod in a Health and Wellness Center on a military installation. It was my first one, so it was my baseline…and even that said that I was a tiny bit overweight and that I needed to do something about the 40lbs of fat on my body. Oof.
But the next year I was pregnant, so I didn’t do a follow up. Then we moved. And moved again. Then covid. Then our nanny politely left childcare. So my body composition follow up continues to meet delays. Current hurdles are that the metabolic services at our current base are only for active duty. And I haven’t looked too seriously for a DEXA Body Composition Scan because I don’t have childcare.
So what’s a busy person to do? USE AN APP.
This is free…so I obviously assume that I am the product, so I never do my scans nude, but otherwise I just hope for the best because I just want something to compare.
I saw someone’s scans in some Facebook group, and I installed MeThreeSixty right away. It was just what I was looking for – and actually gives more estimations that I don’t care about like arm circumference and body area. I’m only interested in seeing my scan, and seeing the estimates for lean body mass, and body fat percentage. A few internet people have said that MeThreeSixty is pretty accurate, so it’s a good deal if you’re like me and don’t have resources to get a real scan or body composition analysis.
I wouldn’t bet my life on its data, but I am happy that I have something to compare now. Speaking of comparisons – cycling menstruators like myself have bodies that change as the month progresses. If you’re looking at this scanner to compare with your future self – ignore the calendar a little bit.
Let’s say that you decide to scan each month on the first. The first of the month will land on a different cycle day each month, and this isn’t really helpful when you’re trying to compare your body month-to-month, because the cycle day is more important than the calendar number.
If you want to compare your month-to-month self, make sure to compare the same cycle days – disregard the calendar otherwise. I try to take measurements on my seventh cycle day, and scan on the 21st cycle day. I use Siri to help set myself up for success. On cycle day one I tell my iPhone “Hey Siri, remind me to take measurements in six days” and “Hey Siri, remind me to take a new scan in twenty days.” This way Siri does the calendar work and I can easily open the Reminders App to see those dates. So now I can easily compare the same cycle days, month to month, regardless of the calendar, and without having to think too hard about it.
I have a pretty regular cycle. I can’t quite set a clock to it, but I know what to expect. Because of my regularity I know that each cycle day seven will have about the same hormones as any other cycle day seven. I can trust the comparison scans more when fluctuating hormones can be removed from the equation (as best I can without a ton of blood draws to confirm).
— ANXIETY CHEESE
Anxiety cheese is a pre-storm treat for my 14 year old wolf-man. He never really liked storms, but they got worse and worse for him each year.
We finally brought it up during his annual checkup and the vet gave us some trazodone to try with him. GAME CHANGER. The very next day we had a summer thunderstorm, so instead of high tensions in the house we set up the dog up for success with his anxiety cheese.
For the first time in ten years he didn’t care about the weather and was happy to nap instead.
We are forever grateful that he only needed a little medicine to help him out. Similarly I have only been getting my anxiety under control this year too – so he and I are more alike than I realized. We just need our medications…and we’ll knock you over for your whiskey and crispy bacon.
If you have anxiety – there’s probably a pill for that.
If your pet has anxiety – there’s a pill for that too.
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