Wonderful Dinner Party!

My Bulgarian friend is in the States for a while, visiting her wonderful guy. They were our hosts when my husband and I visited Bulgaria last fall and we got to see some absolutely amazing parts of the world.  Such fun! They recently invited us over for small dinner party...

When I saw Nellie, I was met with a much smaller, more trim version of herself. Wow! Same smile, but it was much bigger and brighter.  As she twirled around to show me her new outfit--loved it!--she shared with me that she had been reading my blog and trying to follow all of the advice I had been giving. She reads English with ease, though struggles at times with conversation, and yet she was able to grasp every bit of information she needed to work toward her health goal of becoming more svelte.  Nellie, you are an inspiration to us all!

Her dinner party was delivered as most special meals are in Bulgaria:  many courses, with food, drink and great conversation going on for several hours.  It's such a delight to experience eating like this when so many of us in America are used to the fast, 10 minute meal. Relaxing, chewing, tasting, savoring the food....good stuff!

The first course presented cheeses of all types, small bowls of healthy nuts, veggies, grapes, juicy melon slices and whole grain bread.  I smiled at Nellie a few times as we both chose to pass on the cheeses and enjoy a few nuts. She was up and down flitting around in the kitchen, as many hostesses are, getting a good workout in during the meal.

I sipped on one glass of wine that lasted all night and Nellie had water.  We were both choosing to control the excess calories there.  I was wondering if she watched the others as I did, as they kept reaching for more and more cheese. We both set our forks down often, relaxed and chatted.  Control is good stuff. Next came a delicious salad made out of wonderful greens and a great mix of dried fruits, nuts and all sorts of wonderfully healthy things. I remember that lettuce based salads are not the norm in Bulgaria, so this was a mindful choice by Nellie.  No recipe, just a blend of health and deliciousness.  Nellie and I enjoyed plenty of this course!

The main course included lean pork loin chops baked with prunes and served with a pasta dish. Yum!  So tender, good and filling, that I didn't even have room to try the chicken she made for me, just in case I wasn't a pork eater--she's so sweet.  Dessert was a light 'n creamy pie topped with fruit. Flavors were perfect.  And then, the cheese, fruits and nuts came back on the table, along with tea for the rest of the evening.

Nellie, it was great!  You presented beautiful fruits and veggies, nuts, whole grains, lean meat...and delivered it in a wonderful dinner party setting.  You and I made good choices the entire evening, which was easy to do given the choices there.

On the other hand, my husband, who has lost 60 pounds and is now at his healthy weight, found himself losing control over the cheeses that night.  Interesting. He got lost in the conversation and did not stay mindful of what he was eating.  He just loves blue cheese, which can act as a trigger for him.  So, even people who are in control most of the time and have good choices available can lose it sometimes.  He just pulled it together, and started eating a little "tighter" the next day.  Next time, he'll try to focus more on the strawberries and melon slices and less on the cheese.  Good plan.

Thanks, Nellie. Great, healthy party! To your health!