It’s been great having Mary from A Merry Life here for the past few days. Not only is she great company, she’s a great blogger and I’ve been very interested (okay, Fascinated. Okay, OBSESSED!) with her particular type of food blogging. She remarked recently that she wasn’t into Weight Watchers because she couldn’t see keeping track of points and stuff, and that made me laugh because she is MUCH more disciplined about tracking her food than most WW members I know (including myself): she takes pictures of every single food she eats. I knew she did this, because I follow her blog, but I was really interested and fascinated in the whole process. So the first meal we ate together, I was like, “Are you going to take a picture now? Are you? Are you??”

In the morning, I set out a whole bunch of breakfast ingredients and then waited for Mary to choose, prepare and then photograph her breakfast. What would she pick? How would she photograph it? Now we’ve shared quite a number of meals together and I think her process is a great one. And I totally recommend it for anyone who wants to be accountable, who doesn’t maybe want to count or write things down.

Because I’ve noticed that these are the things that are necessary to do this kind of food-diary-via-photos:

  1. You have to be honest. There it is, the amount, the real stuff, whatever it is.
  2. It’s an amazing way of being accountable.
  3. It’s an art form. I love watching the way Mary arranges the elements just so on her plate.
  4. I think it has to REALLY curb compulsive eating. I mean you have to really be deliberate, and make that decision. I AM GOING TO EAT THIS.
  5. For people who photograph then BLOG their food, 100x the accountability!

So I’ve been just really fascinated and impressed and just really interested in this whole aspect of food tracking. I like it. I love taking picture and I love food (duh) and I think tracking is important. Do I have the discipline to do this? Would I really take a photograph of a big huge spoon of peanut butter before I eat it? Hmmm. Something to think about for sure.

At any rate, I am having a great time with Mary. We’ve been exploring a lot of places around San Francisco, and I’ve been introducing her to new adventures in food. She’s had her first taste of Indian food, and her first rabbit-shaped shrimp dumpling. I am not sure if we can cram it all in but I’m hoping to introduce her to Ethiopian and Burmese and Moroccan food while she is here.

We’re getting in tons of activity too (thank GOODNESS). Today we hiked at least 5 miles in and around Muir Woods. We did a 5k with a bunch of WW folks on Friday. Tomorrow I think I hit the gym.

rabbit-shaped shrimp dumpling in Chinatown
communing w nature in the redwoods