The (no) sugar diaries: part 2 (I didn’t eat the brownies)

It’s day 10 and I just realised that it’s nearly halfway to 21 days!

Five days ago I was about to embark on a big challenge part of my 21 days of having no added sugar, which was that I was going to bake some deliciously full-of-sugar brownies for a church retreat this past weekend. I promised to share how it went and if I was actually up to the task that was set before me. After posting the first diary entry last week, I was craving sugar like a pregnant woman who has weird desires for certain foods and I ALMOST decided to just give in and have a teensy bit of sugar. I realised though, that I had told you…yes you…the one reading this post! How could I betray myself, you and the One I’m doing this for?

I looked up my trusty chocolate chip brownie recipe and wrote down the ingredients I needed to buy…butter, sugar, chocolate chips and lots and lots of plain chocolate. To ensure that I wouldn’t shop while hungry, I had my afternoon snack (roasted chickpeas with a little bit of olive oil and paprika…yummy!) before heading out to the Place of Temptation (i.e. Pick ‘n Pay). I was in and out with exactly what I needed, no messing around and no unnecessary additions. I came home, put the butter in the fridge and left the chocolaty things in the shopping bag…in my room…awaiting their destruction the next day.

Day 6: Time to conquer the brownie-baking session. Unfortunately my resolution to bake while one of my house mates was in the kitchen did not work. Alas, all three of them have very full lives and on that particular Friday, I could not expect either of them to watch over me for two hours. So, it was just me and the chocolate and the baking bowl.

First, I combined the sugar, eggs, vanilla, salt and flour…

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Not such an appealing taste, so it wasn’t too difficult to resist.

Next, came the melting of the butter and chocolate…

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Butter and chocolate…num num num!

And then came the time to add the melted chocolate and butter into the sugar/flour mixture with all the chocolate chips…THIS was the hard part. My natural urge to lick my finger once some mixture had spilled onto it had to be resisted, the illusion of satisfaction I would get after just having a little taste had to be ignored and the Roxanne-instinct inside of me to test the product to ensure the eaters would be happy had to be understood as a lie. “You already know what this tastes like, you’ve made them before and they were delicious, there’s nothing different now that needs to be checked”, I told myself.

I resolved to get rid of any morsel of brownie mixture the second it was not needed. I put my hand under running water as soon as the offending mixture contaminated it, I rinsed the pot straight after the heavenly liquid had been poured out and lastly, I blasted some H20 (I might as well have used a hose-pipe) on the bowl of delicious mixture. Watery chocolate brownie mixture? I don’t think so.

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And then finally, it was time to place it into the oven to be transformed.

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I washed the last few dishes while the lovely homey smell of baked goods wafted through the house. I couldn’t believe that no sugar had entered my body in that last hour and a half. I took the brownies to Comfort Farm just outside Grahamstown as part of the sugary collection for the weekend. It was accompanied by Melissa’s oozing Malva pudding, Petru’s birthday cupcakes and Yen’s tea time cake…all for one weekend.

The time away ended up being much easier than I thought. Praise God that I came away feeling more satisfied after not having had the sugary things than if I did have them. I know why it was easier: people know what I’m doing. As part of my testimony on Friday night, I shared with the ladies about my struggle to make the right decisions regarding my body, and the desire that Christ has placed on my heart to change that and live, treating my body as His temple. The ladies at the retreat know. And you, dear reader, now know too. You may not have decided to support me in some way, but believe me, you already have.

What change are you trying to implement? Perhaps give it a go, after telling a few friends you trust and know will keep you accountable (This link is to a post by a youth minister who asked his sons to keep him accountable).

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