This house has the Monday blues from time to time. The weekends are one long high note because my husband spends most if not all of it with me and the kids. I love having him around because, well, I love HIM; but also because I get time off. He wakes up with the kids in the morning, and I get to experience that rare phenomenon known as "being in bed past 7 am". On a good day I actually sleep that entire time, but most of those mornings are spent sprawled like a cat in the sunlight streaming thorugh our windows scrolling through Facebook and Instagram.
I'd really have liked to tell you I spend it closeted in prayer, digging deep into God's Word; you know, because it would make me look good, (see the hubris constantly being repented) but no. I'm not a morning person. Not since I left medical school. Social media is about as deep as I can focus on when I wake up. And by the way, that time I spent quietly reading large chunks of the Bible and praying before I became a mom? LONG GONE. But that's another post for another day. I digress. I was telling you about Mondays. This morning was a bit blegh. I woke up still sleepy, and my hair was extra-scary when I looked in the mirror (people, this nappy locks have only hours left to live. Freedom is on the horizon!). The kids were extra-sweet though, playing together and giggling all over the place, but I still couldn't shake off this yucky feeling. Then I figured out what the problem was.
I haven't had my sweet, sugary, soft, simple carbs in five days. Guys. I AM DYING. I'm here watching the household sink their teeth into bread, chapatis (maaaan, those chapos!), pasta and fries. Let's not forget the one litre tub of Cookies n' Cream ice cream my husband and sister decimated in 48 hours; and the thick creamy hot chocolate I made my son this morning. A girl is in distress here people.
In Mombasa last week, we ate like...well, like we were on holiday. One of our funniest moments was one afternoon as we were lounging on pool beds by the pool. This portly dad walked past us with his kids in tow. My husband looked at him, down at his tummy and then at me. We laughed FOR DAYS. He said, "I guess the transformation is complete eh?". Even now I'm still laughing. "I actually LOOK like the part! I'm a dad!", he moaned. I was howling with laughter.
Bryan and I have gained and lost weight together our entire relationship, true story. When we met, we were the smallest version of ourselves, ever. And we soon discovered that we are emotional eaters. We were so happy that first year of dating, so happy- we just had to eat to celebrate. Celebrate everything; like 2 month anniversaries and various other corny events. I've enjoyed cooking and baking for the last two decades and food channels are in my top five of things I could watch all day. So I started to whip up creations for him in my kitchen (Sweetheart when you read this, remember that fruit cake with rum infused berries?). We spent our time discovering restaurants around the country. In fact, I still remember for my birthday, three months into our relationship, he took me to The Rusty Nail in Karen (so sad it closed.) and we ordered THREE desserts. Reason? It was my birthday people! Crystal clear in my memory: sticky toffee pudding, strawberry cheesecake and lemon sorbet in lemon vodka liqueur. Yes I still remember.
We have favourite meals from all over the world. I'm actually going to make a list, in no particular order of preference.
1. The steaks at Hussar Grill in Rondebosch, Cape town, ooh, and their butternut mash/creamed spinach are unmatched.
2. The five course meal at La Colombe on Silvermist Wine Estate, in Constantia, Cape town.(which by the way ranked the 12th best restaurant in the world in 2010. Naturally, this was a restaurant we only entered once. If we'd been regulars we would have had no rent.)
3. The "Ungrateful Basted Burger" at Royale Eatery, on Long Street, Capet own wooh! Actually, just check this menu out to understand the beauty of the burgers there: http://www.eatout.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/Royale-Eatery-Menu.pdf
4. The frozen yogurt at Myog on Kloof Street, Cape town.
5. The cocktails and noodles at Kitima in Hout Bay, Cape town.
6. The green curry at Salathai in Greenpoint, Cape town.
7. The desserts and coffee at Olympia Cafe in Kalk Bay, Capetown. (Probably our best cafe in the world: tiny hole in the wall joint with probably 6-7 tables, distressed furniture, old photographs on the walls, open kitchen with a lot of shouting to and fro by the cooks, and the ocean breeze carrying through from the bay just outside.) You have to see the website, it even has a live feed: http://olympiacafe.co.za/about/
8. The chicken sandwich and cheesecake at Mimi's in Woodstock, Cape town. This was our after-church joint. (We LOVE Cape town, can you guess? LOL. Moving back was unbearable, we left our hearts there.)
9. The best sushi in the world in a restaurant next to a rice paddy in Bali. Don't think we ever found out the name. We'd been lost on our scooter for two hours; our bums were sore and we were really hungry so we stopped at the first semi-decent place we saw, and the experience was unforgettable. But then there was that sushi at The One and Only in Mauritius.
10. Still on sushi; I maintain the position that the best in Kenya is at the Talisman in Karen, Nairobi. Challenge me on that one. Furusato, Tokyo, Sankara and The Tribe have nothing on it. Zen Garden comes close though; hmm...probably a tie.
11. The mushroom rissoto at Meditteraneo in Gigiri, Nairobi.
12. The french toast at Art Caffe in Nairobi.
13. The chocolate fudge cake at Java House in Nairobi.
14. The king prawns and fries at Forty Thieves in Diani.
15. The pizza and gelato at the pizzeria in Diani owned by that old italian guy with the white hair and hawaii shirts and a cigar in his mouth; I forget the name (remind me anyone?).
16. The prawns at The Old Man and The Sea in Malindi.
17. And I'll end with the sticky rice pudding we had in the Bangkok airport in some seedy food parlour during a long layover. It was superior to any we've ever had!
The list is by no means exhaustive, but I am so off topic it's ridiculous. I'm actually now discussing the exact opposite issue that I meant to when I began, LOL!
In summary, we gained a tonne of weight during our one year of dating. Then lost a significant bit in the next six months of our engagement, because, you know, those wedding pictures are going to be on your wall all your lives. Then we relocated to South Africa and became gym fanatics, transforming our bodies into incredibly muscular versions of ourselves (because, kettlebells). That's how we could eat out so much and remain trim. (Ladies lift those weights, and lift heavy.) Finally we came back home, and had a very difficult and draining three years. We have had no time, or the mental and emotional capacity to take care of our bodies properly. I particularly have been battered by being in and out of pregnancy so frequently.
And so here we are. Finally healed, finally well, and I am back on this wagon. It never gets any easier. The first two weeks of clean eating feel like I am being afflicted with every affliction, LOL. I'm grumpy. I want to give up and bake some banana bread, but I'm determined about this. I want to get back to a comfortable Wambui. This isn't it.
On Thursday I'll continue on this topic; I'll be sharing more about my struggles and burdens about weight, and how God is helping me to no longer conform to the pattern of this world, but become transformed by the renewing of my mind.
I don't know what this post today is exactly; a weight memoir, a restaurant guide...just hoping things don't get lost in translation.
So, there...I've told you. I'm working hard to make sure the next time we meet, you'll be seeing less of me.
*bicep flex emoticon* :)
Christian, wife, mom, doctor, and an alien on earth, on my way to the city of God.