After 4 years of doing my undergraduate degree back at home, it was definitely a new beginning for me when I had to move into living on University residence for this degree. I felt like I was fresh out of high school and just starting University, where I had to not only worry about starting a new part of my life, but also to worry about how living on res would be.
I was definitely not looking forward to some things, especially after hearing some horrid stories about living on res. For example, I was anticipating the loud party animals living either across or above my room… and questioning the cleanliness of the place all together. When I finally arrived into my new ‘house’ for the first time, I felt like it was so cramped because it was only 355 sq ft. or so. And if you must know, I absolutely love to walk around from time to time to get a good stretch after sitting hours on end staring at my textbooks trying to engulf all the information placed in front of me. And there was another problem… the kitchen was RIGHT next to the bathroom. BAM. Like that. It was very awkward. But then again, there are actual houses that do have bathrooms right in their kitchen… I still find that very odd.
My place was a bachelor studio apartment, which means that it doesn’t have an actual divider between the kitchen and the room. I didn’t mind it actually. It was rather nice to be slightly open like that.
Where to even begin?! Don’t worry I didn’t set anything on fire! (Yeah… I do have quite a few mishap stories that I could tell you about in regards to my cooking… but let’s not delve into those right now lol). I’m not going to lie… I was really happy with how I was eating when I was living on my own! I’ve heard of stories where people would just whip out the KD or the instant noodles, but I was good and stayed away from all of those! Surprisingly, I actually ate a lot healthier when I was on my own!! I was proud =). At the beginning, my parents had helped me get some meat and what not and just stuck them all in the fridge. But in the end, I didn’t even eat that much meat. I just stuck to my greens and my fruits.
It’s funny… I used to despise eating left overs… but once I started living on my own, that was all I would eat. I would cook on the weekends when I had free time, and would put some in the freezer so that it would last for a couple days. That way I didn’t have to spend an hour or so cooking and cleaning after myself (because when I cook… I tend to use A LOT of things…).
And just like how i could play a song on repeat 100 times non-stop, I would do that with my cooking. If I made something I liked, then I would make the same thing over and over again. My friend would always ask me “What are you making/eating tonight?” and I would tell them the same thing I said two weeks ago and they go “No comment. Don’t you ever get sick of eating that stuff?!” and I would just laugh and say “Nope. Not at all”.
My favorites were making the fish tofu (which you can buy at T&T Supermarket) with zucchini, cold chicken pasta, pita pizzas (which I must say are very quick and easy to make if you’re running low on time!), plain bread (from T&T), and salads. Oh my gosh… where do I even begin talking about my love for salads?! I used to eat it for lunch and for dinner. And I loved eating the frozen fish. You simply put some lemon on it, and pop it in the oven. Quick and easy. And you can put it in your salads too! Sometimes when I went out for dinner, I would just order salad. That’s how much I loved it, and I still do!
There were definitely some major changes to my diet when I was living on my own. For instance, I started to drink milk again. And I started to eat cereal for breakfast. My friend always calls me a rabbit because of the foods I ate.
Perhaps the primary reasons why I ate healthier at home were because (a) I’d rather spend less time cooking (b) Because I don’t know how to make those delicious gourmet meals you see at fancy restaurants (c) Simple means quick and (d) I’m a poor student, so that means I don’t have extra $$ to spend on chips and unhealthy snacks. Okay, maybe that’s a lie. I did a Cookies by George run or a cookie run once every week… Oops.
Going to school definitely did not stop me from spending a few $$ here and there at the mall. But in addition to that kind of shopping, I have started to develop a fond liking for grocery shopping. I know, eh? It might sound kind of funny, and very asian, but I loved to go to Sobeys for dollar days because those would be the times I could stock up on cheap stuff. It wasn’t until now that I realized just how expensive things were! Whenever there was a really big/good sale, I would even call my mother and tell her to go buy it… and she would tell me “You know, when you come home, -you- should do the groceries since you love it so much” because often I would tell her that she should have bought the item at [enter store name here] because they were much cheaper. Gotta love the asian genes kicking in.