Whole30 Week 3

So Week 3 of Whole30 has come and gone, and I’ve done better this week (for the most part).   I’ll pick back up on June 16th:

For breakfast, I whipped up a smoothie with spinach, almond butter, banana, chia, flax, blueberries, strawberries, coconut water, and coconut milk.  I also had coffee with coconut oil.  For lunch I had yet another spinach salad with tomatoes, cucumber, blueberries, strawberries, slivered almonds and guacamole, deli turkey and blueberry balsamic vinegar and olive oil.   Yes, I eat enormous salads.  #noshame

My new obsession is with kombucha, and I’ve been having one every afternoon to combat the 3 o’clock slump.  My favorite is the hibiscus flavor I think.  Gingerberry is the bomb, too (I can only get GT Kombucha at the Thomasville Publix, but please clue me in to more resources!).

For supper I threw together this kitchen sink frittata, and it was awesome.  Massive quantities of lightly steamed kale, onions, yellow squash, broccoli, tomatoes, and topped with a splash of hot sauce, of course.  And eggs, obvi.  I didn’t measure much, but I steamed a ton of veggies in my Le Creuset, whisked together 8 or 9 eggs in a mixing bowl with salt and pepper, poured them over the veggies and added sliced tomatoes on top.  Let them sit for a minute to cook on the bottom side, then stick the whole thing in the oven on broil until the top is golden brown.

Whole30 Kitchen Sink Frittata | Oysters and Pearls

The next day (we’re up to June 17 now), I had leftover frittata with hot sauce, along with coffee and coconut oil, per usual.  For lunch, we had Barbarito’s at the office, which was awesome.  I made a small salad of lettuce topped with steak, chicken, pico de gallo, guacamole, and jalapenos.  As a snack later on, I had a hard boiled egg and kombucha.  For supper, we had this salad mountain, made up of spinach topped with blueberries, tomato, hard boiled egg, deli turkey, cucumber, raw yellow squash, pickled green beans, and guacamole (balsamic vinegar + olive oil dressing).

Whole30 Kitchen Sink Salad | Oysters & Pearls


On to June 18: Breakfast was (yet again) leftover frittata (it was getting kind of gross at this point) plus a handful of blueberries.  Lunch was a chef salad from The Scoop in Thomasville for a working lunch (no cheese, please!).  It was sort of sparse, to be honest, so I got hungry later on and ate two hard boiled eggs with a 100 calorie pack of Wholly Guacamole.  And a kombucha.

For supper, Wheat grilled us some FINE ribeyes from Jones’ Meats, grilled okra, too!  I sauteed yellow squash and onions in ghee and a little olive oil.  It was a delicious meal.  Whole30 Dinner | Oysters & Pearls

Oh, and I had about 1,000 cherries.

I’ll be up front: here’s my cheat this week:

Fresh Fried Fish | Oysters & Pearls

Would YOU be able to resist fish as FRESH as it gets?  Literally pulled from the sea moments before, then deep fried on the back of the boat for lunch?  Yeah, me either.  I don’t even care that the fish was battered with flour and fried in peanut oil.  Or that the coleslaw was made with mayonnaise of unknown origin.  Or that the hushpuppies are made outta cornmeal.  Life is short and the fish were fresh.

We went on our annual awesome fishing trip with our friend Jacob at Lady J Charters on the 20th with my dad, Wheat’s dad, Marc and Cullen.  We caught our limit of red snapper, a couple bee liners and a couple white snappers.  It is always the MOST fun day. (link to last year’s trip)

Snapper Fishing with Lady J Charters out of Port St. Joe, Florida | Oysters & Pearls

Besides the fried fish (we won’t even talk about the hushpuppies and Parramores’ coleslaw), I did pretty well.  I had ham and turkey, raw almonds and cashews, an apple, and watermelon throughout the day.  For supper we ate the same thing again (fresh fried fish, coleslaw, hushpuppies), this time with a caesar salad.  I resisted the chocolate cake.  #nonscalevictory

Back to reality and on the bandwagon, we had a huge lunch for Father’s Day at my grandparents in Blountstown.  For that event, I made this whole30 approved (and crazy easy) spinach salad in a flash.  Fresh spinach topped with avocado, strawberries, blueberries and slivered almonds, with a really tasty dressing.  Recipe for it below, copied and pasted straight from whole30.com.


Whole30 Spinach Summer Fruit Salad Recipe | Oysters & Pearls

Berry and Spinach Salad with Blueberry Vinaigrette, @3wholesisters

  • 6 cups organic spinach
  • 2/3 cup blueberries + 1/3 cup blueberries
  • 1 avocado diced
  • 2/3 cup sliced strawberries
  • ½ -1 shallot sliced julienne
  • ¼ cup slivered almonds
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1/8 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3 TBS lime juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Place spinach in a serving dish. Top with blueberries, strawberries, shallot, and almond slivers. For Vinaigrette: Place blueberries in a food processor and pulse a few times. Add olive oil, apple cider vinegar, lime juice, and salt and pepper. Process until smooth. If necessary, add a little bit of water to thin out, depending on the consistency.

– See more at: http://whole30.com/2014/10/best-whole30-recipes-steal-salad/#sthash.MMnD9faH.dpuf


Whole30 Blueberry Vinaigrette Recipe | Oysters & Pearls

Despite my Auber-Southern family’s plethora of tempting and delicious treats, I managed to fill my plate with mostly whole30 compliant noms.  Ignore that deviled egg.  I’m sure Duke’s is whole30 compliant, right? ;)  I also somehow managed to resist my grandmother Tezzie’s amazing, wonderful, possibly literally Heaven-sent homemade yeast rolls (think Sister Schuberts on steroids) for the first time in my entire life.  I’m not even sure if that’s really a victory. :(

Whole30 Fathers' Day Lunch | Oysters & Pearls

Tezzie and I both got a little bit of baby love with little Elah, who is growing like a weed.  I die at that seersucker.

Tezzie and Elah | Oysters & Pearls

My salad, surprisingly (haha, psych) wasn’t really a hit with anyone else due to all the amazing food, so I added a bit more to it and brought it to Fathers’ Day meal number 2 at the Kirbo Kasa.  It went over exceedingly well with that crew, and I didn’t even bring any home.  I’ll definitely be making that one again, whole30 or no.

June 22: After a 3.7 mile run with my sweet accountability buddy (aka Juin, the never-tired bird dog) I had a couple hard boiled eggs, half an avocado, strawberries, and sriracha (just on the eggs, I swear), with a side of probiotics and zinc and coffee.  Sweet handmade leather mug available at Maiden South. ;)

Whole30 Breakfast | Oysters & Pearls

For lunch I finally made some homemade whole30 mayo and promptly whipped up some egg salad.  Meet egg salad mountain: Whole30 Egg Salad Salad | Oysters & Pearls

For dinner I visited another recipe from the whole30 book: balsamic roasted sweet potatoes and brussels sprouts.  Basically you reduce an entire bottle of balsamic and drizzle it over roasted veggies.  They make it sound way more complicated than that by making it a “recipe.”  I also drizzled it over this pan-fried chicken breast.  I did not drizzle it over the roasted okra.

Whole30 Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Brussels Sprouts drizzled with Balsamic Reduction, Pan-Fried Chicken Breast and Roasted Okra | Oysters & Pearls


Speaking of roasting tons of veggies, it works out well, since I get them delivered to my office steps by this dashing young farmer, David at Hopkins Farms.  If you’re local, you can get a half-bushel of locally grown goodness (pictured below, $30) or a whole bushel by emailing hopkinsfarmtotable@gmail.com.  He delivers to Thomasville and Cairo currently, and the veggies are amazing.  If you’re doing Whole30, just let him know in your email that you want a Whole30 box, and he’ll even leave out the corn and peas and give you extras of the rest. :)  Thanks, David!

David, Hopkins Farms Farm to Table CSA | Oysters & Pearls


I’m going to spare you the rest of my whole30 experience meal by meal.  I can’t believe it’s almost over!  I’ll be popping back in to share my final Whole30 thoughts and feelings, along with life post-Whole30 soon.  It’s really difficult for me to keep up with extensive posts like this, and I’m sure difficult for you to pay attention that long, anyway, so I plan to keep my posts from here on out shorter and sweeter. :)  Happy Summering!

Until Next Time

Working on my Fitness


It’s no secret that since January I got my act together and starting working on my fitness.  Along with multiple other things.  Since then, I feel like a completely different person.  Someone who actually likes working out.  Who makes it a priority.  Who eats well and tries to truly live well, rather than running around like a chicken with my head cut off, just trying to please each person who put a request in front of me for my time/energy/creativity/productivity.  Whew.  Thank goodness that’s over.

So now I walk a lot, and I even run a good bit!  I do yoga almost every day, and I use a medicine ball to do some strength work.  Nothing revolutionary.  In fact, nothing even remotely hardcore.  But it’s fun and it fits into my still-busy schedule, and most importantly, it works. So I thought I’d write a quick post about the things that have been working for me.

Hazards of Working Out at Home | Oysters and Pearls

That hazards of at-home workouts: cats and dogs vying for attention.  The Honorable Judge Wallace Cat-O is especially demanding.

So my newest craze is medicine ball workouts.  I first got hooked thanks to Kelly Ripa and her ABC workout.  This is an older version than the one she did recently with Michael Strahan, but the workout is still great, even back in 2007!

Another one my husband, Wheat, recommended to me is the Carolina Tar Heels 400 Workout.  I highly recommend it now, too!  And this workout series by Popsugar is one I discovered earlier this week, but have already incorporated some of the moves into my routine (some of them are the same as the ones in the Tar Heels 400).

On days I’m crunched for time, I do a quick 20 minute medicine ball workout.  High intensity, short time, certainly better than nothing! :)  I follow it up with usually at least 10 to 15 minutes of yoga.  On days I have more time to spare, like days I work from home, I go for a half run/half walk with Juin and listen to my audio books.  She enjoys it just as much as I do!

And finally, on days I’m working in Thomasville, I get my butt into a yoga class at ma gurl Lindsey’s yoga studio.  Lotus Yoga & Holistic Wellness just opened up in its permanent location on Monroe Street (behind the post office and across from the Big Oak).  It’s adorable and beautiful and fabulous and I’m so excited my office is so close by!  Congratulations, Lindsey!!

Lotus Yoga & Holistic Wellness, Thomasville, Georgia | Oysters & Pearls

I’ve found that mentally challenging myself by rotating through quick, high intensity workouts,  longer walks/runs with audiobooks, and mental/spiritual/physical yoga keeps me engaged, never bored, and actually excited about exercise.  What are your favorite workouts?  Any youtube videos or links? Share them in the comments, por favor!

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.  -Psalm 139:14

Until Next Time

Whole30 – 2 Weeks Down

Another week of Whole30 in the books!

Picking up where I left off: This week started out with a busy, but nice week – all at home! – and included one of my favorite Whole30 meals to date: Whole30 Hamburgers!

Whole30 Hamburgers | Oysters and Pearls

Said Whole30 Hamburgers garnered a lot of unfair criticism in our house.  That is, before they got eaten.  Wheat was extremely skeptical of my plan to perch a burger, topped with a fried egg, on top of a salad.  He hemmed and hawed and attempted to get me to change the meal plan to hobo pockets instead.  However, I eventually wore him down as I almost always do (he’s doing Whole30 with me, isn’t he? ;) and after a few bites, he declared that they were actually pretty darn delicious.  I concur completely!

The ground beef we picked up from our favorite local butcher, Jones’ Meats, and after Wheat seasoned them with salt and pepper and grilled them, we placed them on top of salad greens, sliced pickling cucumbers, sliced tomatoes, sliced dill pickles, topped them with a fried egg each, and then drizzled sriracha all over the place.  A 100 calorie pack of Wholly Guacamole on top of it all, for me.   So good!

June 11th: for breakfast I inhaled a hard boiled egg with sriracha and 2 juliet tomatoes, along with my usual coffee + coconut oil.  For lunch I had the other half of my hamburger that I couldn’t eat the night before on top of more salad greens, another pickle, and sriracha… all before I hit the road for Atlanta for one of my college besties’ wedding!!

I arrived in Atlanta around 4 and had picked up some roasted, salted cashews and almonds at a gas station pit stop on the way up for snacks.  For dinner, my girlfriend Courtney, her husband Matt and I hit a taco joint for a quick dinner.  I had tacos sans tortillas, which was weird.  And a side of steamed kale.  Not my favorite meal.  Guacamole and salsa help, but it was still weird.  No picture.

June 12th: started this day out with a verse from my devotional (Proverbs 15:23) that I liked so much I copied it down into my food journal:

“A person finds joy in giving an apt reply… and how good is a timely word!”

For breakfast, I had an apple the hotel offered at the front desk on my way to a hot yoga class with Courtney!  We headed to Atlanta Hot Yoga in Buckhead for their 9:30 am Bickram class, based on my fabulous aunt-in-law’s stellar recommendation (check her fashion blog out at Undercover 411 if that’s yo thing).  It was intense but amazing!  A seriously great first hot yoga experience for me.  We left with a yoga high and headed to another one of Aunt Vicki’s Buckhead recs: Cafe Jonah and the Magical Attic.

Whole30 Compliant Meal at Cafe Jonah's in Buckhead, Atlanta | Oysters and Pearls

Here I had fresh pressed juice (hydration flavor – tasty and needed!), a green salad, a salad with mint, green tomatoes, honeydew melon, and cucumbers, smoked salmon with tomatoes and capers, and a side of fruit.  I was starving, it was 100% Whole30 compliant and it was also completely refreshing and delicious!  So glad we stopped in on Friday.  I cleaned my plate and my bowl.

We shopped a bit at Lenox and headed back to Roswell to get ready for evening festivities.  The three of us again left for dinner, this time headed to downtown Roswell (Canton Street) to piddle, eat, and have a couple drinks (not Whole30, I knowwwww) while we waited for the rehearsal activities to be done.  We had an awesome dinner at Salt Factory.  I started off with a salad topped with heart of palm, tomatoes, fresh radishes and herbs.  And I’m somewhat ashamed to admit that I could not resist that goat cheese crostini.  #sorrynotsorry

Whole30 Compliant Salad at Salt Factory, Roswell, Georgia | Oysters and Pearls


For my main course, I had the blood orange glazed salmon on top of mashed potatoes.  I’m sure it was somehow not Whole30 compliant per se, but for the most part it checked all the boxes, so I’m going with it.  Plus, it was DELICIOUS.

Blood Orange Glazed Salmon at Salt House, Roswell, Georgia | Oysters and Pearls


June 13th: It’s MK and David’s Wedding Day!

I started the day with the hotel’s buffet (which was really, really good by hotel buffet standards). I had lots of bacon, some scrambled eggs, and a mess o’ strawberries.  After breakfast, Courtney and I went on a long (5.5 miles!) walk on a greenway nearby, and picked up cobb salads at Corner Bakery to eat by the pool with our friend Sara.  They were pretty decent – lettuce topped with bacon, avocado, tomatoes and green onions with a vinaigrette dressing.  We skipped the bleu cheese.  After a while by the pool, we got dressed and headed to the chapel to see our friend get hitched!

Our friend Mary Katherine is from Atlanta, but has lived in Shanghai since we graduated from college.  The groom is from LA, but they met in Shanghai.  They’ve travelled all over the world, and their cocktail menu commemorated some of the more special spots.

Globally Inspired Cocktail Menu at MK and David's Atlanta Wedding | Oysters and Pearls

I indulged in the Thailand Tonic, which was as tasty as the flowers were pretty.

Thailand Tonic Cocktail at MK and David's Wedding | Oysters and Pearls

It was the MOST gorgeous wedding.  The ceremony was held at Roswell Presbyterian, which was  beautiful and home for the Bride.  The reception was held across the street at an historic home.  It was simply stunning, just like the couple.  The toasts were so sweet, so heartfelt, that we all teared up.  Even the bartenders were crying!  MK and David are such a special, sweet couple.  I love you both very much!  So happy I got to be a part of their day.

MK and David Get Hitched | Oysters and Pearls

And while everyone was lookin’ pretty, I unleashed my inner nerd and was catching fire flies to show the gals what one looked like up close.  Because I’m cool like that.

Catching Fire Flies | Oysters and Pearls

The food was just as amazing, and I’ll admit, I cheated a bit and indulged in a small serving of the ravioli… along with a ton of veggies, baked chicken, fried green tomatoes, pesto chicken skewers, and hummus on pita (only one little sliver!).  Oh… and some late night pizza back at the hotel.  That one, I am sorry about.  I paid for it all day on Sunday!  But not sorry about staying up late playing Heads Up in the hotel bar with some of my best friends. :)

June 14th: The next morning, MK and David treated everyone who could make it to a fantastic brunch at Public House in Roswell.  I jumped back on the bandwagon with black coffee, an omelette with spinach, bacon, and sundried tomatoes topped with a side of guacamole, plus some fruit.

Whole30 Compliant Omelett at Public House, Roswell, Georgia | Oysters and Pearls

After lingering for far too many cups of coffee, we all finally said our goodbyes and hit the road. I miss them all so much already!  Luckily, we have a couple more reunions already on the books for 2015 – and I’m already counting down the days until we reunite again!  There really is nothing like time spent with college girlfriends.

I took the opportunity of being in a real city to make pit stops at Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods for some items we can’t get back in Bainbridge.  And once back in Bainbridge, Wheat and I reconvened over this very tasty, Whole30 approved meal.

Whole30 Squoodles with Shrimp, Sweet Peppers, and Tomatoes | Oysters and Pearls

Squoodles (squash noodles via Spiralizer) sauteed in ghee and minced garlic, along with sweet peppers and halved juliet tomatoes.  (Steps: warm ghee; add garlic, then peppers and tomatoes, then shrimp, then squoodles, then serve.)  Light, healthy, totally delicious, and no guilt whatsoever.

June 15th: Which brings me to Monday, Monday.  I picked up some gluten-free rolled oats at Trader Joe’s, and following the directions, I made some oatmeal (water, pinch of salt, plus some pecans, cinnamon and blueberries).  Not bad!  A little bland, though.  I want to puree some fruits and freeze them in ice cube trays to thaw and swirl into things like oatmeal and chia pudding in place of a sweetener.  Not pictured: I also had a scrambled egg with guac.  EDIT: I had a late night realization that although gluten-free, oats=grass/grain and are not Whole30 kosher.  Oops. Guess I cheated again. 

Whole30 Compliant Oatmeal | Oysters and Pearls


For lunch yesterday I had some vegan egg white salad I picked up at Trader Joe’s on the recommendation of my favorite yogi and yoga instructor and health nut and bestie, Ashley.  It was pretty good!  Upon closer inspection, it contains soy, so it wasn’t 100% Whole30 approved, though, so I probably won’t get it again.  We were out of salad greens, so I had it was random veggie plate.  The highlight was the pickled green beans from my sister, Anna Jo, and her husband, Marc!

Whole30 Lunch Ideas | Oysters and Pearls


And I’ll pick up next week after that!

Current thoughts on Whole30:

Well currently, Wheat is hangry.  Mostly because I had late night pizza and he didn’t (he stayed behind in Bainbridge to attend another good friends’ wedding!).  We are really missing some foods, but if the late night pizza did anything, it made me realize just what pizza does to me.  I was bloated and ill all the next day, and yesterday morning I woke up with what felt like a hangover – foggy and not sleeping well at all.  I feel so much better today after a full day of getting back on track, even though relatively speaking, let’s be real: it was the healthiest I’ve probably ever been at a wedding!

Anyone got any good Whole30 recipes or tips to share this week?


Until Next Time