A Change in Focus

As most of you know, I had a revision to my gastric bypass back in January, to an extremely malabsorptive surgery that means that my body doesn’t absorb much of what I take in. Because of that, what I take in has an order of priority – protein first, then veggies, then carbs, and I should be avoiding sugar. I have been kind of blowing that off a bit in recent months, and now my health is starting to suffer for it. My weight loss has stalled, and I’ve been running into issues where my levels of protein and iron are really much lower than they should be. So much so, that I’ve been losing hair like crazy. So with my health in mind, I’ve really got to change to focus of the way I’ve eat, concentrating on that which is good for me, and cutting out (or at the very least, cutting down on) that which is hurting me.

Not only that, but the downturn in the economy is hitting us especially hard, and we’ve been trying to cut costs as much as possible. I’ve been participating in a lot of weekly/biweekly/monthly events, like Tuesdays with Dorie, Taste and Create, the Barefoot Bloggers and Whisk Wednesdays, where I’ve made a committment to make certain things at a certain time. Often, because of that, I end up having to make things I would normally never make or eat, and then the results get given away or thrown away – a huge waste that I just can’t afford anymore.

So from here on out, the focus is going to be on eating what I need to eat – high protein, lower or better carb, lower (or no) sugar, fat doesn’t matter. I’m pulling myself out of all the recurring events like the ones mentioned above. I’ll cook along (since the recipes are listed for the groups) when I can, or when it fits into my plans or lifestyle. The change will be gradual, as I still have a ginormous backlog of posts (like 40+) that will be sprinkled throughout intermittently. Does this mean I’ll never make pasta? Or desserts? Or cook with sugar? Or eat out? On the contrary. I’ll still be doing that, but on my terms, and what fits into my lifestyle. I’ve been so obsessed with blogging events that I’ve let it take over my menu planning. If something in my backlog happens to fit in with an event, or a planned dish coincides with an event, sure I’ll still participate.

Gluttony got me where I am now. And with all of the desserts and rich foods I’ve been making, I’ve fallen back into bad habits. Right now my health is the most important thing. And this food blog still fits into the equation, but as with me, it evolves. It still has a Columbus focus, it still is about what I cook and where I go out to eat, it’s still about eating local and visiting the farmers markets, just in a different (more healthy and frugal) way. I hope to cook my way through my huge pantry and freezer stores by the end of the year (gotta clean house in order to make room for the more healthy stuff). I hope those of you who come here for my event posts will still visit, as I will still visit (and comment when I can) on all of your blogs.

And for those of you who aren’t into that sort of thing, and who won’t visit anymore because of the change of focus (and I hope that there aren’t many of you), I want to give you a hearty and hearfelt goodbye. Your visits and supportive comments over the course of this blog have meant the world to me, and I’m sad to see you go. Please do take the time to say goodbye, as I’ll miss you.

Meanwhile, onward and upward, and hopefully I’ll see the numbers on the scale go down while the protein and iron climb up. 🙂

26 thoughts on “A Change in Focus

  1. laurie

    Wishing you all the luck in the world with the changes you need to make. There is nothing more important than your health. And I cant wait to see what you cook up. xo

  2. Ben

    One has to make sacrifices to be healthier. But I’ve found out that eating healthily is not a big sacrifice, to the contrary, it can be so much fun. I am looking forward to those changes on your blog 🙂

  3. Joel

    From a fellow glutton who should be changing his ways, I wish you the best of luck. Like I said the other day (and I’ll quote verbatim):

    I’m more interested in everyday food than the fancy, once in a blue moon kind of stuff.

    Thanks for keeping it real!

    Following those sentiments and with the knowledge that people don’t just go to blogs to look at pictures, I’ll give you the most universal axiom of writing:

    Write. What. You. Know.

    You’ll be a better writer/blogger if you are genuinely connected to the food you’re talking about, rather than just manufacturing it to satisfy a demand. Good food, time and time again, is about passion. Could I make a great Dover Sole with beurre blanc? Sure. But it wouldn’t have the same about of soul as a pot of chili or some great barbecue. I would not enjoy it as much, either.

    I have much more respect for the kind of people that can take something basic, cheap, and abundant- and turn it into something that transcends the parts. Anybody can make amazing (expensive) ingredients taste and look good, but my respect lies with the people who were thrown the scraps and turned it into a cherished family/community heirloom.

    If you put the same amount of passion and creativity into cheaper, healthier foods that you do into the dishes you’ve made in the past, I have no doubt that I will remain a loyal reader.

  4. Jenn

    I love your site and would much rather have you alive and well to write for many years to come! And of course you should not feel beholden to what you think your readers think of you, but follow your gut. (No pun intended.) Good luck on your healthy-eating resolution; at least you are starting in the summer when fresh produce is at its most abundant!

  5. OhioMom

    I don’t belong or participate in many of the online food groups, I enter the occasional foodie event, but I have been where you are now for a long time. I cook/bake on a budget, and yet manage to turn meals that do not break our bank.

    Good luck with your new focus …

  6. Megan

    Good luck to you, it’s all too easy to fall into the “I spent the money to make this, now I HAVE to eat it”. Take care of yourself first!!

  7. Kalyn

    Definitely you should cook and blog about what is best for your body and health. Best of luck to you in the change of focus.

  8. Jule

    I am in a similar boat right now. I have been eating healthier and losing weight for the past 5 months, and it is a big adjustment. But, it can be fun, and it gives a whole new set of challenges. I look forward to getting some healthy recipe ideas from you in the future!

  9. jancd

    This is going to be fun, interesting and exciting. Many of your readers (me, especially)need to cut back on spending and eating, so this will be helpful and encouraging to many people. I enjoy your style of writing and will continue to read your blog. Let’s get going with this.

  10. GumbeauxGal

    Swampkitty, here is wishing you good luck. I think you’ll find it lots of fun to put new spins on old dishes. I know I do sometimes!

    I really like your no-nonsense attitude!!!

  11. megan

    I completely understand. I belong to some of those monthly events and I sometimes wonder what the hell am I doing. I wouldn’t make some of these things if it weren’t for the events. I’m all for refocusing!!!

  12. Kayte

    Well, this is not goodbye, but rather I applaud you for taking control of your life and sending it in the direction you need for it to go at this particular time. We will see you when we see you, and we will rejoice in your choice! Best wishes…I’ll keep checking in to see how it is going!

  13. breadchick


    Good for you taking control back and focusing on your health and well being. I’m not going anywhere and as always look forward to your cooking and restaurant/Farmer’s Market reviews. Who knows, while I may not live in Columbus, business sure could take me there and when/if that happens, I know exactly who to turn to about the food scene in Columbus!

    Looking forward to the change of focus.

  14. michelle of bleeding espresso

    Brava! Good on you for taking control not only of your blog (the events *can* get overwhelming–you’ve listed many reasons why I don’t do them either) but also, and more importantly, your health! Woohoo!

    Looking forward to following your progress 🙂

  15. Nichi

    I think the change will be good for us all. I frequently alter the recipes that I get from your blog to make them a bit healthier. My most recent obsession, CaJohns Corn Chowder with Smoked Sausage, I changed and I can’t stop making it or eating it. I used lean Smoked Sausage; 1 tablespoon of butter instead of 1 stick; fat free half and half for the cream; and low fat cheese. It still tastest decadent. I love it SO much I’ve made it twice since your post. I can always count on you for something new to make for dinner and to let me know which restaurants are worth the venture to Columbus. Good luck with your endeavor and thanks so much for the blog!

  16. Carol

    I’ll still be a faithful visitor of your site. As a former Columbusite, I love reading your local reviews and reports. Plus all of us can benefit from a more healthier eating plan so I very much look forward to your posts. Good luck to you!

  17. Pingback: For Whom The Blog Tolls « The Columbus Social Media Cafe

  18. Sue (coffeepot)

    I so know what you mean about the events.

    I wanted to join Daring Bakers, but know that I need all those cakes and sweets around my kitchen like I need a hole in the head..so I didn’t join.

    I think the local challenges are probably the healthiest to participate in.

    I will be praying for your health.

  19. Rebecca

    I am looking forward to the emphasis you are going to put on high protein, low carb, low-fat cooking. I am supposed to be doing the same, but have been struggling with it. I can’t wait to see what you come up with. You definitely will not lose this reader. Good luck!

  20. Mary

    I usually just lurk, but I wanted to stop and comment. I applaud your decision to focus more on your health and evolve your blog. I battle with my weight and staying healthy and a lot of these groups look like so much fun, but as a family of 2, my husband and I just can’t eat like that either. I’ve reduced myself to Daring Bakers and Cupcake Hero.

    I also wanted to let you know that I love how you focus on local food. It makes me wish that Columbus wasn’t 2 hours south of me.

    I hope your feeling better soon!

  21. Carli

    Hi Becke –

    I work for an Ohio PR agency, and I’d like to tell you about an upcoming event I think would interest you. I scanned your page but can’t seem to find your contact information. What’s the best way to get in touch with you?



  22. Jen

    Hi Columbus Foodie,

    I enjoy reading your blog and looking at the scrumptious pictures. I’m sure you can find great ways to eat healthy in CBUS. I look forward to seeing what you come up with! Best of luck to you.


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