Some of you may remember our exclusive interview with Santa in 2019.
We were honored that he took time out of his super-busy schedule to talk to us. Well, the luck truck struck again and we had the good fortune to catch up with St. Nick to talk about what he and Mrs. Claus and the elves have been up to the past couple of years.
We hope you enjoy it!
Santa, how have you been?
HO! HO! HO! We are all doing great up here at the North Pole. The elves, reindeer and I are so excited for Christmas Eve. This is what we live for...delivering millions of presents all over the world and the boundless joy and happiness kids and adults alike experience on Christmas morning!
Is everything ready for the big trip?
I would say we are more prepared than ever! The elves have had so much energy the past couple of years. Would you believe some of them are cranking out over 2,000 toys every day? And the reindeer - they are faster than they have ever been. They are ready to zoom around the world (and I'm not talking about online meetings...if you know what I mean).
This REAL food lifestyle has been such a blessing! But I have to tell you the reindeer are starting to become food snobs. They used to be fine with raw carrots and apples...oh, and oats, of course. Now, they want things like the Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal Cups and Baked Apples with Oatmeal Cookie Granola, and even request the Curry Roasted Carrots and the Braised Red Cabbage with Apples. Really?! How many reindeer are eating Curry Roasted Carrots? They say the raw carrots just aren't as exciting and don't have as much flavor.
They even asked Mrs. Claus to make the Gingerbread Baked Oatmeal before we take to the skies on Christmas Eve! They told me to ask you if you have a recipe for healthy donuts - Prancer was complaining that he hasn't had a donut in over a year.
Tell Prancer he is in luck! We have Apple Cider Baked Donuts on the website, and there is even a coaching tip on making healthier donuts using REAL ingredients. We are thrilled to hear everyone is so excited about their REAL food lifestyles. And, what about you? Last time we talked, Dr. Crinkle was encouraging you to reduce your blood pressure and cholesterol. Have you made any progress?
Actually, yes, I have! Despite protests from the elves, I tried the Keto diet at the beginning of 2020 - that was my New Year's resolution. It worked for about two weeks, but it just wasn't realistic. There were so many foods I had to give up and it was so much effort keeping track of the foods I could and couldn't eat. Then I decided I would give the REAL food thing a shot. Let's just say this is one of the best decisions I have ever made (marrying Mrs. Claus was my all-time best decision, of course!). And, that website membership and cookbook you gave us a couple of years ago have been a blessing!
Within just a few short months, my blood pressure and cholesterol were even better than the goal Dr. Crinkle set for me. He said, "Whatever you are doing, keep it up!" And, I'm sure this won't surprise you, but I am sleeping like a baby and have so much energy during the day. The elves even had to make me some smaller pants...they said I looked ridiculous with my pants all bunched up around my waist.
We noticed you looked fantastic! Has it been easy? What was your experience?
I would say it is simple, but not easy. You have always told us not to go to bed without knowing what you are going to eat the next day. That has been such great advice. The planning has been so helpful for us. The other challenge has been shopping for groceries. When Mrs. Claus and I go to the Mistletoe Market, we get overwhelmed with all the options. We loved your grocery store tours this year...it has made shopping so much easier and we even ordered several bottles of that aged balsamic vinegar you recommended.
Would you believe some of the elves started a farmers' market this year? I don't know how they do it, but they figured out how to capture the heat from the sun and are growing kale and swiss chard and sweet potatoes and all kinds of produce...it tastes so fresh and healthy. They even have a little competition going to see who can grow the best-tasting and different varieties of produce. We are loving it!
We are using our slow cooker a lot. We love 2-for-1 meals and our slow cooker is perfect for soups and stews to keep us warm and cozy this time of year. Plus, it is great walking through the door in the evening and the cottage smells amazing and dinner is ready! Plus, we are now eating a big salad with every meal...we are even making our way through your top 50 recommended homemade salad dressings. My favorite is the creamy sriracha dressing with those sriracha croutons - you know I like a little kick!
We are so proud of you Santa! You really do look great and you seem even more jolly than ever.
You know, one thing I didn't mention is we have let our hands off the wheel a couple times. It is so easy to let my exercise routine slip and to turn back to those processed foods. I notice when I do that, my mood changes and I don't have as much energy. Mrs. Claus and I agreed that if either of us starts to slip back into the old routine, we will pull each other back on track. We don't want to go back to where we were. We are really thriving right now and clicking on all cylinders!
We also try to keep things interesting up here at the North Pole. We don't want anyone to feel like they are stuck in a rut. Every year, we ask the elves to come up with new ideas - things we can do differently, and we encourage them to pursue their best ideas, knowing they may not all be successful. You never know unless you try! We remind ourselves that, even if an idea doesn't work, we will learn something to make us better in the long-run. That is where the idea for the farmers' market came from!
And, by the way, thank you again for the virtual cooking demos you have continued to do for all the elves. They really love them, and I know they are looking forward to more new ideas next year!
Thank you Santa for everything you do, especially for the love and joy you bring to others, and the inspiration you give all of us!
Merry Christmas to the entire Eat REAL America community!