Last week we went to Austin, Texas for a mid-winter vacation and a reprieve from the dark gloom of the Northwest (see SAD). I decided to apply elements of wellness coaching to the trip, and Josh (so graciously) was totally game. During our planning, we brainstormed ideas and expectations we had about the trip, and I wrote up a Vision Document. This includes a 'vision statement' (the big picture) and 'intended outcomes' (how we'll achieve it). When we got back, we read it over and rated our success on a 10-point scale.
It was an energizing, unique, fresh and inspiring trip. We explored a new city, checked out the live music, ate great Mexican food, learned to dance the Texas 2-step, visited Canyon Lake (pictured) and bathed in some sunshine! I also decided that margaritas count as my fruit servings for the day :) We agreed that the vision document was a nice way to organize thought and intention, and was the backbone of our trip planning process.
For my self-care, I received a massage and dropped in on a yoga class. For exercise, we walked 8 miles through the South Congress neighborhood on Tuesday, 12 miles through downtown on Saturday, and had two nights of Texas 2-stepping. At Canyon Lake we rested, watched the deer, and did some wine tasting and pizza delivery. Back in Austin, we saw 7 live bands, including Dale Watson (an Austin icon). Josh met one of his philosopher idols, Matt Dillahunty, and got to geek out at the taping of one of his favorite podcasts. He also came in $52 under budget. We were able to strike a nice balance between rest and activity. Sure we had our tired moments, and some places we wanted to visit were closed, but flexibility and unpredictability were both part of the plan.
Our vision document is posted below. Words we'd like to add after the fact are 'music, dance, exploring, tacos' :)
What would your ideal vacation vision be?
Vision Statement & Intended Outcomes for Josh and Laura in Austin
We are energized by a fresh, unique and inspiring vacation.
We have a plan to reference, but allows for improvisation. Priorities to visit: Barton Springs, Canyon Lake, Continental club, Laura’s massage, and the taping of the Aetheist Experience podcast.
We keep expectations in check, being willing to have a good attitude if things aren’t optimal. Sub-optimal circumstances are part of the plan.
We remain open-minded and flexible. We can laugh at obstacles and enjoy the journey.
We treat ourselves (and each other) with gentleness while being in a new place and learning how to get around.
We walk daily.
We feel free to drink but not overindulge daily.
We are free and open with money, trusting our instincts to not overspend. Know that we can have a fancy night out if we want! Josh has a cash budget of $100/day.
Well, 5 days into a new food trial, and feeling fine. Jury's still out on the chicken experiment. I liked it one day, and then wasn't thrilled with it as leftovers. I had to smother it in sauce and convince myself it was tofu. My winning recipe finds are below.(If you're a food photographer, please don't laugh at me.)
Simple protein salad:
roasted butternut squash (450 oven, coconut oil, salt, 20mins YUM)
easy balsamic vinaigrette (olive oil, balsamic, dijon, salt, pepper)
Simple protein salad in a jar:
Same salad as above, added some more chopped fresh veggies (cukes, carrots, snow peas, sprouts) and put it in a jar for easy lunches!
Thai Chicken with Spicy 'Peanut' Sauce
The sauce was really delicious... and it looked beautiful! Luckily Ballard Market sells spiralized zucchini, because a spiralizer I have not.
Kale and Egg Quiche with Sweet Potato 'Crust'
Turned a breakfast recipe into dinner, because why not?
This was phenomenal! A bit of miso adds a robust flavor to the eggs and veggies. The sweet potato crust was easy and delicious! It came out more like a casserole, but who cares?
I am a lifetime learner and researcher in happy, healthy, fun living.