Ten Days and No Water

It was ten days till I flew to Oregon and we had no water. The simplest way that I can describe what happened to Shane and I is our water main broke. When I asked him exactly what was wrong, he went into far greater detail, all I know is, for two days we didn’t have water and suddenly we had a huge ditch dug by the house and the old, hand dug well was open and Shane and his dad were looking in trying to figure out what to do.

IMG_2174

The water trouble started before I was a mere ten days out. It started about last Thursday, when at that moment, it just seemed like a pump went bad and we had no water for the rest of that evening and until Shane got a new pump. But come Sunday, and we were waterless again. So by Labor day, pipes were getting dug up and assessed, and Tuesday, Shane was juggling work calls and emails while helping his dad install new pipes.

IMG_2183

 

For what ever reason, though things seemed fixed, we again ran out of water this past Thursday into Friday. Our well was simply dry. This has never, ever happened before. If I hadn’t been anxious about the water issues at ten days out from Oregon, I now certainly was.

IMG_2177.jpeg

This brings to mind the story in John 4 where Jesus meets the woman at the well. I thought it was a pain having to haul water from the creek that runs through our property, around 150 yards downhill from our house, for various things. But back in those days, it wasn’t because someone’s water happened to not be working that you would go to the well. Everyone, every day had to have water, and the one source for it was the well outside of town.

When Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” 

Of course the woman said back, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.”

It would be such a relief for anyone to not have to worry about water any more. It is a concept we don’t necessarily deal with daily, we just turn the faucet and there is the water. We are aware it is something we need daily, but there isn’t the daily struggle surrounding it generally. When we can’t get to it, it creates issues. The need for it would be magnified back then, no faucets, just a well, simply the physical labor alone in gathering water each day just to quench ones thirst, man oh man. She thought that was the type of relief Jesus was offering her, this daily task would be avoided, and for her, this daily task was made more difficult because of her shameful lifestyle. Because of her history, she didn’t go to the well in the cool mornings like the other woman from the town, she went midday when it would be hot and extra uncomfortable. 

She came when she could avoid other people. But not that day. That day, she met Jesus, and he was willing to talk to her and change her life. Jesus went beyond her temporary physical discomfort, Jesus cared about her soul. He used an image used before to describe himself, like in the book of Jeremiah where is says the Lord is the spring of living water in chapter 17 verse 13, but it would’ve been SO relevant to this woman getting water, midday, at the well. 

IMG_2184

We seem to finally have water again and this little hiccup before my trip to Oregon has reminded me that God cares. Someone hearing this might exclaim, “Wait, you think that is God showing how he cares?” I do. First, we got water again, we had to really assess our water source and it gave us a good heads up as to what we will eventually one day need to replace. Second, at least it happened in September and not mid January with frozen earth! Third, I got a much better image of how important water is, and how I need to be more grateful for it. Besides that, having family offer their washers and showers reminded me of how blessed I am to be a part of this family and live where I live. While I don’t have the daily task of hauling water from the well like the woman in the story, for those couple of days of no water, I could just barely imagine the relief she might’ve felt hearing she would never have to thirst again, but love knowing that Jesus was referring to more than just physical thirst and to our spiritual need and no matter what our circumstance or past, he cares.

Meal Preps with Olive Oil

I feel most at ease when I have prepared and thought out meals for the week with this diet. It is difficult to do things on a whim, because nutritional values are really taken into account. There isn’t a quick way around most meals, and it seems that maybe, despite how cumbersome it can be, that is one of the big positives to this diet. It makes you think about what you are putting into your body.

For the most part, I can do fine with no salty snacks around. If you have followed my blog for a while, you might have noticed that sweets are more my thing. Bread is Shane’s weakness. In general, we both love food, and we love a variety of it. So when he and I wandered into our local olive oil store, we were in for a tasty surprise.

The Enchanted Olive sells olive oils, balsamic vinegar and white balsamic vinegar. You can get just the normal, non-flavor infused ones, but I promise they still pack a punch. Or you can get ones that are infused with a rainbow of flavors. Currently, I am obsessed with my recent purchase I made when my mom came to deliver to me my new Hoosier cabinet. I told her we had to go to this shop, and she wasn’t disappointed, walking away with several oils and teas herself. My purchase from that day is now my newest obsession in the kitchen, I got the cara-cara orange and vanilla white balsamic vinegar, the coconut white balsamic vinegar, and the Persian lime infused olive oil.

Snack-3

These flavors all mesh so well and are so fresh tasting; they are very inspiring for these cold winter days, bringing to mind bright beaches rather than the sepia tone, cold nature outside. So I planned out four meals using all three of these robust flavors that would be keto friendly.

Snack-5.jpg

Citrus Prosciutto Salad

  • Two cups coarsely chopped lettuce of choice
  • 8 oz can of artichoke hearts, rinsed, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup chopped baby tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes
  • 2.25 oz can sliced black olives
  • 2 oz prosciutto
  • Bunch of basil, coarsely chopped
  1. Tear prosciutto into smaller pieces
  2. Combine above ingredients

For the Dressing

  • 3 tablespoons Persian lime infused olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon cara-cara orange and vanilla white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

Shake together in jar dressing ingredients and drizzle over salad

Snack-4.jpg

I included tilapia fillets, sautéed in the lime oil for about two to three minutes per side, depending on the thickness. Then I drizzled those with the coconut white balsamic vinegar. In the other two meals, I used salmon, sautéed skin side up in the lime again for about three minutes before flipping and finishing the cooking in my preheated oven for a few minutes at 450 degrees. The salmon were drizzled with the cara-cara orange and vanilla white balsamic vinegar. Now I have four keto-friendly meals awaiting me in my refrigerator for this week!

 

Keto Diet Snack

The truth is, I never figured I would walk into one of those weird fad diets. One that had you eating coconut and almond flour willingly, cooking with ghee, or containing the words “gluten free”. It is funny what you will do for those you love though, and Shane and I started our journey with the ketogenic diet after repeated, long lasting gout attacks that would practically cripple Shane.

In the middle of summer, we began and stuck to a keto diet. We did so pretty well for about four months. Heading into the holidays, we weened off of it and still ate healthy, but Shane admitted to feeling better when on the diet, and he was the reason we were doing it in the first place. So, we are weening ourselves back on, which is difficult to do during the holidays, going to peoples houses and eating what they serve. We almost always come across I am sure as picky eaters and often times, if headed to my moms, I will redirect the menu to include things such as bacon wrapped asparagus and side salad instead of just sweet potatoes, beets, and cornbread.

Honestly, when you first undertake this diet, it can be pretty depressing. I am being totally honest, I wish I could say after a week, I stopped craving sweet things, but I didn’t. I just really love sweet things, and stevia is not the same tasting. There is no, “Oh, just use natural honey instead!” or “But, maple syrup is a safe sweetener!” Sweets are pretty much out of the picture, and that pretty much even means fruits. About the only thing that saved Shane and I the first time around was that I do genuinely love spending time in my kitchen, so I was getting to do a lot of that on this new diet plan.

You begin to figure out things that work for you. You find favorite recipes, and because your body is craving correct fuel, we have yet to grow tired of these favorite recipes that I often make once a week, like our chicken breast pizza in the crockpot, of course no bread like substance included, and our venison crustless pizza in the crock pot. On occasion, we stumble into a snack that is delightful, and this is one that I wouldn’t even hesitate to bring to a party.

Snack

Salmon Cucumber Sliders

  • 1 cucumber, sliced
  • 8 oz smoked salmon
  • 1-2 avocados, depending on size diced
  • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons Persian lime infused olive oil, available at places like The Enchanted Olive
  • 1 tablespoon chopped flat leaf parsley
  1. Mix mayonnaise, lime olive oil, and parsley until combined
  2. Top cucumbers with avocado, followed by salmon and finally a small dollop of mayonnaise dressing

Snack-2

If anyone would like the nutritional break downs of this bite sized treat shown, I can take the time to do so. For the most part, I discovered I do better not tracking my macro’s like a mad woman. I have a sense of how much protein I should be having a day now and know if I am irritable or tired, often times that means I need a little more fat. Oddly enough, I feel like I can go much of the day eating very little, then a big dinner feels good, but Shane is the opposite, eating small all day and a small dinner.