As I have been working my way through applying The Happiness Project to my own life, there have been some small steps and some really big steps. Eating better is one main goal of mine. The first step for this goal was a small one: giving up margarine. We had already switched from stick margarine to stick butter, but we were still using Brummel & Brown margarine spread. We had tried Land O’Lakes Spreadable Butter, but it wasn’t really that spreadable. During a Christmas housewares buying spree at Jungle Jim’s, we decided to solve the problem old school style. We bought a butter bell. It’s solved the problem and we’ve been really happy having soft butter for our toast and such. The flavor is so much better!
In March and April, we made an even bigger change. We decided to give up pop (or soda or whatever you call it in your region). We used to drink a lot of pop. Our fridge used to always have four 12-packs of pop in it (Diet Mountain Dew, Coke Zero, Caffeine Free Diet Coke and a wild card that rotated between Diet Squirt, root beer or ginger ale). A large space in the pantry housed more 12-packs. There was the hassle of buying it and hauling it home. And then there was the hassle of taking the cans to the recycling bin. Enough already!
We knew we couldn’t go cold turkey on this one so we eased into it. First, we finished up the pop we had in the house. Then, we quit drinking it at home, but did order it out (or for me, drink it at school). Tom already drank iced tea when eating out and I started ordering iced tea every once in a while. At home, we relied on our water cooler and our Soda Stream. We now always have orange juice, cranberry juice and ruby red grapefruit juice in the fridge.
We took bottles of seltzer water and juice on vacation with us too. By the last day of vacation, I started noticing that pop tasted almost “thick” compared to the iced tea or sparkling water we’d been drinking. I decided it was time to give it up completely. It hasn’t been easy and school is especially hard, but the one and only bottle of Diet Mountain Dew that I’ve had in the last three weeks didn’t taste very good compared to sparkling water and juice I’d been drinking.
I’m amazed at how prevalent soda or pop was in my daily life, but I’m very happy with the change. This step, by the way, has led to another better eating step that I’ll talk about next week.