My 2nd great aunt Amy

missdiane

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My 2nd great aunt Amy
missdiane

This girl runs on Dunkins

The hormones are beating on the door so the brain is following along by shooting moods in many a direction. Considering that things in life are more chaotic than I'm used to dealing with, it's going to be a rough week. So if I either start randomly blathering or disappear, bear with me. That said, some brain regurgitation:

I've been seeing people posting and reposting a video on local groups on FB about the local HP coffee house. It's about the coffee house offering coffee cupping classes to teach people about "good quality coffee." Whatever. I was all supportive of the place when they opened since I love supporting local/small business places and love little homey coffee shops over Starcraps. (Starcraps actually does have some good policies but are ridic overpriced and I can't stomach their regular coffee)

This local place gets more pretentious by the day - not to mention more expensive. Lawd forbid you should want to put Splenda in your coffee. They don't offer it or any other non-sugar option other than Stevia which I personally think tastes like ass in coffee. I actually had someone once give me the side eye when I took a packet of the yellow persuation out of my purse to put in my pour-over fancy-schmancy free trade brown stuff. I swear it was an expression as if they saw me pull out a beaker of my own piss to pour in.

If I move to the place I'd like to move to in September, it'll be right around the corner which is a shame since they're far past starting to rub me the wrong way and unfortunately for as much as I love my little Dish Cafe for breakfast, Dish's coffee sucks. Guess that means that I'll be getting my exercise schlepping down to the Dunkin Donuts where they're fine with me dumping whatever I want in my horrible horrible shitty coffee. Screw ya snobby coffeehouse, I LIKE Dunkins. Call me a plebe if you want.
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Dunkins coffee is pretty good and I always avoid the Starbucks in town...you're right, ridic. prices. I don't drink that much coffee, though I got a single cup Keurig last Christmas. Got the K-cups at first...then I figured out how expensive they actuality were.

So I picked up refillable K-cups at Big Lots (the non Keuring brand name and much cheaper) and now use my own coffee instead. Dunkins puts out their Bakery Series coffees that I can buy in Stop and Shop, so I treated myself. Yummm, and it's lasting a long time so ends up being cost effective for me.

I stopped using sugar in coffee and tea for the most part because of my diabetes. I stay away from sugar substitutes...Splenda, Equal/ aspartame etc. as they've been linked to cancer. Stevia is the most disgusting thing ever.

However, I do periodically use Turbinado sugar, or coconut palm sugar. Both are brown and less processed, and the actual sugar content is low enough that it doesn't hurt once in a while if I crave just a touch of sweetness.

I'm slowly weaning myself down on the sweetness in the coffee and it's going well. At one point a long time ago, I'd have put two splenda in a small coffee. Now I'd do half a pack.

Some places that have the stronger fancier brew need some sweetness (and a sprinkle of salt. If you've never put it in coffee, it cuts the bitterness very well)

I have the coconut palm sugar and use it every now and then.

As far as the cancer risk, I do avoid aspartame most often since the studies don't seem to be 100% on that and other nervous disorders. I haven't seen any peer-reviewed studies nor does cancer.gov list any cancer risk for splenda. Even with aspartame, the lab studies with rats were only if they were consuming a very very high amount of it daily.

Basically I figure just about anything seems to up your risk of cancer so I try to practice moderation overall

Yep it's better to err on the side of caution with aspartame. I used it in the past and it left and odd aftertaste so it wasn't hard to pass on it.

I never knew about using salt to cut the bitterness in coffee...though I have to watch salt intake because of my BP. How much would you use?

Moderation is the key to everything isn't it?

Yeah, aspartame tastes weird - hence why it's the sweetener of last resort.

It only takes a little sprinkle of salt. No more than you'd sprinkle on an egg

It is. Though sometimes I need to remind myself of that a lot when it comes to snacking

I've had to cut so much out of my diet, mostly carbs. Little to no bread, no pasta, no rice...not even brown rice, no potatoes.

I miss my Doritos and Goldfish.... I get tired of snacking on celery, which is also heavy on the carb side so I have to watch that too. Carrots are high on the glycemic index. Leaves the snack arena a bit empty.

Chicken for protein that's about it....though I am boiling a smoked ham and cabbage right now, a big treat. (It's the Irish coming out in me) I keep joking to my doctor asking what's left to eat...dirt?

The ham and cabbage sound yummy!

I don't think you're in my healthystart community? Spikes hopped on most recently to help mod it since lovely MFU folks are rolling by :)

You might get some ideas for some ways to make what you eat more fun while still being affordable.

When I was doing the calorie counting recently before taking a break, I ate much less carbs for some reason. It actually seemed to help. The carbs I do eat are the high fiber english muffins for a breakfast sandwich, Smart Taste pasta for when I get that "GOTTA HAVE PASTA" craving and potatoes and rice (white basmati) only very occasionally - probably a couple of times a month.

Probably my most eaten protein are eggs and egg whites. I'm thinking of making a quiche with egg, dill, spinach, goat cheese and some smoked salmon that a buddy sent me. I'm indulging by actually putting it in a crust (premade, being lazy) but it also could work well crustless.

Though I do also have the plan this week to do the 70s recipe with hamburger helper. I'll eat one helping with the recipe as it's stated on the card and then I reserve the right to load up the leftovers with more fresh veg and such to not waste food and finish it.

You're way more ambitious than I am. I use my oven to store my cans of cat food. lol. I have a very small kitchen.

I had ti eliminate most complex carbs because they affect my diabetes and spike my blood glucose very high and then I have problems getting it back down. So all the breads pastas, rice (any kind) potatoes etc I've had to cut out as much as possible. I can live without all of it except bread...I miss my bread.

Even the multi, whole wheat/grain doesn't work for me.

I don't eat much meat and as I said if I do, it's chicken. Stick with veggies like spinach, broccoli, zucchini asparagus, Brussel sprouts, avocado, tomato, salad. Periodically I'll used quinoa, sweet potatoes, cabbage. I drink almond milk for the most part, eat nuts and legumes. I have a sensitive stomach so I have to avoid a lit of spices. My diet is very basic and boring.

I have to avoid corn, carrots and peas as they're high on the glycemic index.

I avoid desserts too. My one big treat when out and about is pizza. I'll have thin crust with hardly any tomato sauce (as there's a lot of sugar in it) I don't eat the actual crust end of the pizza so the carb intake is minimal. Pizza's the one thing I won't do without. LOL

I've never tried the trick of the cauliflower crust. If you are up this way sometime, I might have to make you my guinea pig ;)

Any news on the monthly HP gig?

No fish? I look for sales on frozen unbreaded cod and get tilapia and flounder too. It's really easy to cook up quickly and can be made simply and goes so well with spinach and on top of salad. I also look for sales on frozen cooked shrimp since you can thaw them in some cold water quickly and toss them in salads.

My BFF has a sensitive stomach and can't do anything too spicy either. She doesn't eat sauces on things and doesn't do soups or anything she's not familiar with. Simple is not always bad but it can get dull after a while.

No news on HP...it's supposed to be the first Friday of the month at Pinos but that weekend is the big Comhaltas All Ireland competitions. That's going on and sessions galore with some of the best trad musicians in the world converging in Parsippany. I have a student competing so will be concentrating on him. He's not competing until Saturday afternoon, but me going to HP for a late night and then the competition on Saturday is too much for me.

I have to be tip top as I'm playing penny whistle for my student in the drum accompaniment competition. He's only 10 years old. I don't expect him to win but it will be a good experience for him. However, if he places first, second or third ...I'll be ecstatic along with him and his family.

If he somehow places first or second then he qualifies to go to Ireland to complete in the All-Ireland Championships. That would be mind blowing!

As to Fish, I eat tuna out of the can only white albacore in water. I love shell fish (though I can't have a lot) but I just don't like fish in general. I know, weird.

I don't blame your friend for avoiding sauces and soups of unknown ingredients. I make my own so I know what's in them. Yeah, simple can get dull pretty fast...

Vysila has given me some great suggestions but I've become very lazy when it comes to cooking. The Caulifouwer crust is a great idea, but it takes effort. MY get up and go got up and went when it comes to cooking.

Case in point making my smoked ham and cabbage in a slow cooker. I could make in a pressure cooker but I have to find things in the cabinets to do that but that would mean getting down on the floor...which is problematic, as sometimes it's hard to get up. I didn't feel like crawling on my hands and knees from the kitchen to the sofa. Getting up to my feet can be pretty comical. Just picture a toddler just learning to walk.

It's a sight when I do my gardening...lol!

That does sound like a LOT to handle in one day. Hopefully if not then, June! I'd love to come watch :)

I can imagine with your balance that it's hard to get up and down - definitely save it for the things you like such as the flowers, for sure.

A lot of folks don't like fish and like shellfish even less but at least you can have the lovely shrimpies every now and then. ;)

I only treat myself to shrimp a few times a year. I have steamers and a lobster on my birthday, but not until September.

I'll let you know when I'm going to be in HP. I'd have to drive up with a friend though as my car is getting old and pretty beat....wouldn't want to break down. Yikes.


I prefer an almond flour-mozzarella pizza crust over the cauliflower crust. It adds a crunchiness that I miss a lot on keto. Seems to me I posted the recipe a while back.

I shall have to go spelunking for it!

Just applied for that loan over the phone and looks like I've got a decent 7.99% rate for 5 year loan with no penalty for paying it off early. Woot!

Outstanding, my dear! That's a pretty good rate for a personal loan, indeed. Kudos to you! I take it you're going ahead with a move, even if you aren't sure which place to go to as yet?

Yeah, I'm getting out of here come hell or high water. I have three places in mind. The one I prefer is a one bedroom in Highland Park in walking distance to most of the downtown stuff is first pick and they said they'd let me know availability around July. I'll pester them mid-July if they haven't gotten back to me

Second choice is the big studio in New Brunswick. I have e-reminders set up but if the first one doesn't pan out, I'll pester them next no later than late July

The third choice is another complex in Highland Park that's still close-ish to downtown but the parking isn't as good. If I don't find something else, that will be the least desirable but still better than where I am choice

Don't let snobbery from others stop you from enjoying your favorite brew place. That said, I like the Dunkin' brand, too, and buy a bag at the grocery when it's on sale.

I use stevia as my sweetener of choice almost exclusively and like it just fine, but of course such usage is a personal preference. Other sweeteners, aside from liquid sucralose (the ingredient in Splenda), tend to raise my blood sugar so I don't use them.

And I so agree about a sprinkle of salt in coffee! I used to add salted butter to my coffee, but when I dropped that, I found I needed that bit of salt added.

Even Splenda raises your blood sugar? Yikes! Your blood sugar sure is FUSSY! Boo!

The only Dunkin brand I didn't like in the store was a Black Cherry flavor. Even with salt it was still rather annoyingly bitter. For regular coffee, my favorite flavor when I have a little extra $ is to order the orange coffee from nuts.com

I still need to try that buttered coffee. Maybe tomorrow morning since I'll need the coffee to wake up and the butter to stave off the nervous nibbles. I saw some website giving a recipe for bulletproof coffee and went on and on about OMG! Don't EVER use salted butter! EW! and I thought "hmph, speak for yourself"

If you try the buttered coffee let me know what you think! It's always best if you have a little frother or blender to mix it up well, otherwise you get a most unappetizing grease slick on the top of your coffee.

I found it to be an acquired taste, but once acquired, hard to do without! :)

Any powdered sweetener raises me, but the liquid ones don't. So if I use splenda (as I do on occasion) it needs to be in liquid form, not powdered or granulated. The non-liquid types of sweeteners have things like maltodextrin added for bulk, and those do spike me.

If you eat to your meter, as I do, you learn very quickly what foods cause spikes. I cannot eat portobello or crimini mushrooms, for instance, nor can I eat commercial cheese shreds, because the cheese is coated with potato starch. Everyone is different, though, and what spikes one person is perfect for someone else.

I am very much a Dunks girl too. As soon as I cross the border on my way home I always have to stop at the first Dunks in the states since there aren't any up here. And Maritimers believe that you can use the same coffee grounds to make multiple pots of coffee so all the coffee up here is disgusting.

I can't imagine such a hoity-toity coffee shop advocating Stevia. Yuck! Personally I find all of the sugar substitutes gross though.

They use the grounds more than one? Weird. It's not tea where you can eke maybe another cup from a bag. That can't taste anything but brown.

I think the Stevia is their only concession to those not doing sugar. Y'know because it's like NATURAL and all. Whateverrrrrr.

If I get any snobbery from the staff (it's happened but not often), I'm going to point out that the simple syrup that they make to add to the coffee is entirely too watered down.

I admit I wouldn't know "good" coffee if it bit me, but I agree that Starbucks is over-priced and over-rated. My former boss, otherwise a wonderful lady, mainlined coffee and used to drag us to Starbucks or Dunkin for our monthly dept meetings. I really never found anything I would order a second time at Starbucks. Their tea is terrible.


About the only stuff I'll bother with at Starcraps is a sugar free frappuccino which isn't really coffee at all once you've added all the junk to it. I have had the green tea matcha latte which isn't horrid so if you're stuck going there, it's something you could order to be polite. lol

I've actually heard now and then that McDonald's actually has decent coffee nowadays and they sell it in stores. I haven't gone to a McD's in ages (and the one that I went to was poorly run and the coffee was clearly old) but I'd like to try it again sometime just for kicks.

And psst, like I mentioned above, sprinkle in a smidge of salt. It makes the coffee taste better.

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