Self-Care and the Power of the Lentil



We’re experiencing spring in February.


All around us, flowers are bursting into bloom, showing off their pink and yellow blossoms with as much enthusiasm as they can muster. I hear regular reports from Peter’s parents and Courtney about the below freezing temperatures and mountainous snowdrifts in the northeast US, and I count us lucky that we can walk with Maddie through soft meadows fragrant with new grass and freshly-turned earth.



Since writing this post about reclaiming the old Jessie, I’ve made a conscious effort to make time for the important things in life. Not papers and case analyses — oh, no. The important things in life are things like knitting and cooking and the aforementioned walks with Peter and Maddie.

That’s where the title of this post comes in. It’s funny how we sometimes need to be reminded to take care of ourselves. Goodness knows I do.

(And yes, the title of this post belongs on the cover of a self-help book recommending meditation with lentils among other impossibly specific and seemingly random life lessons.


Told ya.)

For me, part of taking care of myself is eating properly. You’d think that would be a no-brainer for a registered dietitian. And yet, during the first semester of my MBA program this past fall, I lost nearly ten pounds. No, I’m NOT kidding. I was shocked when I stepped on the scale last December.

How did this unexpected weight loss come about? When I thought back on the prior months, I remembered many times when I was so busy, I either skipped meals or grabbed some crackers. Seriously. Needless to say, last fall was tough. I did not live life; I survived.

This spring, I’ve taken a different path. I’m busier than ever, but school does not come first. Family and friends and my own health are foremost. I’ve still struggled, but keeping my priorities straight gets easier every day. For example, I’ve been packing the following meal for my daily lunch.

There's that darn napkin again.
There’s that darn napkin again.

Quinoa, lentils, hummus, guacamole, and veggie salad with cranberries and pumpkin seeds.



As a dietitian, I know how important healthy eating is to general well-being, but sometimes I need to remind myself of this fact. Chowing down on lentils, for example, is a smart way to pack in the protein. I cook lentils and quinoa in bulk, then portion out daily servings of lentils and salad on Sundays.

(I’m staying away from red lentils, however. Too many questionable memories.)


This post serves as a talisman against the times when I rationalize away healthy living in the name of completing one more assignment. No go, MOE. Jessie’s living the healthy life.

Have a lovely week, dear reader.

P.S. So sorry, East Coast and Midwestern US. #youhavemysympathies

Weekend beach trip.
Weekend beach trip.
Windblown pup.
Windblown pup.
Yours truly, scaling the dunes.
Yours truly, scaling the dunes.


  1. Love the flavor profile of the dish. Visually striking as well. Congrats on taking your life back, health and time are life’s true most valuable commodities.

    Be well

  2. im glad you are able to finally take a better care of is so easy to forget about ourselves when we are too consumed with things around you…and this salad looks phenomenal.

  3. Your health is the most important thing, so I’m happy to hear you’re taking care of yourself!! It can be tough to do when school tries to get in the way, but I’m sure you’ll feel better in general if you’re well-nourished!

  4. Hope you’re feeling great, Jessie! Eating wholesome food and taking time to enjoy each and every day makes such a huge difference, but it really is challenging sometimes! It’s a good thing you’re a pro 🙂 Cheers!

    1. Feeling super great, Lucy! I hope you’re doing well and enjoying the season 🙂

  5. Holy cow, springtime?! I know that spring’s coming because we have much more daylight now, but we’re still a long way from grass and flowers.

    So glad that you’re taking care of yourself and knitting and going for walks. Good for you!

    xo Marie

  6. Wow Jessie, way to go 🙂
    Thanks for sharing these great snaps!
    Happy for you and hope you keep up with the good spirit..
    Spring is definitely here and you have shown us how to embrace it! xxx

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