chocolate

In my last post, I spoke of something that had changed since I was a child — I feel a little guilty about taking Christmas presents.

Over the last couple of days, I’ve been thinking about that and I realized that something else has changed also.

I can no longer eat holiday food for days on end without a noticable food/sugar/over indulgence hangover.

As a kid and as an overweight adult, I was capable of eating and eating and eating. Sweets, rich food and all of the things that only come around during the holidays stood no chance around me. Despite the obscene amount of sweets that were presented to me as gifts or as items just left around the house or office, I would manage to eat through them all by New Year’s Day.

No joke.

That’s a lot of sugar consumption for 7 days….

Those days, are no more.

I have been feeling like I’ve been dying of a sugar overdose for days. I admit, despite being pretty “holiday’d out”, I still have been having a few cookies or pieces of candy a day. I was feeling pretty lousy about my lack of self-control, until I realized how far I’ve come.

A couple of weeks ago, I made this post, in which I showed half of the batch of Peppermint Mocha Fudge that I bid on during Tina’s bake sale fundraiser. I said that I had plans on freezing my half for later, as there were too many treats hanging about.

If this were 2006, I wouldn’t have frozen that fudge. I might’ve told you I was going to, out of embarrassment at the thought of you all thinking I was a fatty for eating it, but more than likely, I would’ve sat in my room eating it until I was sick.

But it isn’t 2006.

It’s 2010, and my half of the batch of fudge is safely in the freezer. I froze it with a few squares per Ziploc baggie, so that when I am ready to enjoy it again, I can just take out a small portion to enjoy. I did leave a few pieces on the counter to enjoy now. I still haven’t finished them all.

The day before that post I had made another post about all of the sweets that I was surrounded with.

In 2006, all of those TJ’s candy packages would’ve been long emptied and discarded. The Melty Kisses and most of those kit kats would’ve been gone too. The kitkats and Melty Kisses probably wouldn’t have made it to that photo shoot even.

But it isn’t 2006.

In 2010, I did eat a few more pieces of TJ’s candy, but all three of those partially eaten bags of candy are still in my desk drawer at work. There’s been so much food around, I haven’t been the least bit tempted to go back to them since that post. The Melty Kisses that I claimed wouldn’t make it to Christmas are still here. I didn’t eat another one after taking those pictures. I think I may’ve eaten ONE kitkat, but I think it was from the previous batch Maya had brought back in June.

That’s right. In 2006, there wouldn’t have been any kitkats from June to eat in December.

When I ran the Christmas Classic 5K on the 19th (recap is coming…waiting for my official time….it’s still not posted!! Grr!), they gave us Double Rainbow ice cream after the race and there were 4 See’s Truffles in our goodie bags.

If it were 2006, I would’ve eaten the ice cream AND all four truffles on the walk back home from the 5K.

Who am I kidding?  I wouldn’t have been RUNNING a 5K in 2006. Period!

9 days later and I still haven’t eaten the candy.

In addition, my Mom gave me a box of See’s in my Christmas stocking, as she always does. That would’ve easily been half gone by this point if it were 2006.

My See’s box is still in its plastic wrapping. The Swiss Miss and Kashi Cookies are unopened too.

So what does that all mean?

I’ve spent an amazing amount of time this year beating myself up because I put on 15+ pounds. Because there were some moments where I overindulged. A few times where I even ate an entire box of cookies or an entire pint of ice cream in one day. By myself. Are any of those things good? Of course not! But it’s life. Sometimes we do those things that are not good for us.

And after we’ve done them, it’s time to move on and look at the bigger picture.

I have come a long way, and while there still are bumps in the road, I feel good about all of the changes that have stuck.

Another fact:

In 2006, I would’ve been too ashamed to write this post. To tell you all about how I used to binge behind closed doors on chocolate and snacks.

Not in 2010. I’m not willing to waste one ounce of shame this holiday season on what has already been done. I suggest you not waste any either.

What changes have you made that have stuck?

I don’t know about you, but I have a very serious love affair with Chocolate.

I don’t remember when I first noticed it. Maybe a year ago…maybe a year and a half…I can’t remember. At any rate, at some point, I realized that there was a chocolate factory at Pier 17, right on my walk from work to the BART station. I was excited to find out about TCHO, but I never seemed to have enough time to investigate. Finally, an appropriate occasion arose last June when Maya was home from Japan. We happened to walk by and decided that the pull was too great. We went in, looked around, talked to the employee on duty and bought some chocolate. I bought a “TCHO-A-DAY” Bottle. It was a 14 day supply of chocolates like these:

There are 4 flavors** types of chocolate in this jar: Fruity, Nutty, Citrus and Chocolatey. Each square has only 44 calories and all flavors are excellent. I find that they completely satisfy any kind of chocolate craving that strikes at work. The 14 day supply lasted about two months, as I didn’t really feel the need to have chocolate everyday.

** I apparently didn’t read the package. Clearly I was too busy eating the chocolate. As Maya corrected me:

“TCHO chocolates aren’t actually flavored. They use pure chocolate with no added flavorings. The names they give their different squares reflects the different notes they think are emphasized/brought out from the use of different source beans and percentages.”

 

Back in June, I also picked up a can of these:

I wasn’t sure how I would like mango drenched in chocolate, but they turned out to be really good. Kind of like a raisinette, but with mango. You got 17 pieces for 90 calories and after my TCHO-A-DAYs were gone, the mango pieces definitely helped me get through my work day.

When the TCHO-A-DAY jar had first run dry, I tried to make a stop by the factory’s showroom to pick up more. I had really grown attached to having a square of chocolate when I was feeling sluggish and grumpy in the afternoons. Unfortunately, when I dropped by after work one day, they were all closed up. There was a sign that said something like, “Due to the construction of the new Exploratorium, our store has temporarily been forced to close.” Bummer.

But I got over it. I still had a half canister of mango bits to get me through the hard days.

Then on Monday I came into work.

You guessed it.

For the THIRD time this week, this is what I found when I went to look for food:

This is not going to work!

So I made a run by the TCHO factory, as I had heard that they had reopened their store.

Brilliant!

I picked up a couple of items.

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I got a bottle of these for me…I moved up to a 30 day supply. I also picked up a bottle for my co-worker who really loves TCHO.

I also found this item for my office mate:

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It’s a large square of the Citrus flavored TCHO with Vincent Van Gogh’s  “Starry Night Over the Rhône” on the front of the packaging. The de Young Museum has the exhibit of Impressionist Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay on display until the beginning of next year. On the back of this item, there is a 20% discount code for admission to the exhibit. Neato.

I didn’t have enough money on me to pick up any more mango pieces, but I feel reassured by their new facilities that I should be able to pick some up later. I really liked their larger showroom, and I’m excited by the fact that they will be starting factory tours soon. Alexa and the Chocolate Factory? Oh yeah!

Do you have a favorite local chocolatier?