Behind The Butter

Moderation is Key

Mental health day was a success! I won’t go into too much detail, but there were pedicures and trashy magazines involved.

It was amazing.

You know what was even more amazing though?



For some reason, all I could think about today was pulled pork. When your newly pedicured toes make you think of little piggies going to market you know it’s gone too far. Luckily for me, I date a Texan who’s always down for some good ol’ Southern cookin’.
So, naturally, we went to our very favorite Sonoma County barbecue establishment—Smokehouse.


I ordered the usual, the North Carolina pulled pork dinner with sides of cowboy beans and slaw.

The best thing though was the cornbread, I’d have to say.

Woooahhhhhhhhhhh honey!

It’s all about everything in moderation, friends. Everything in moderation….


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  • Still Life in Southeast Asia
    August 10, 2010 at 9:08 pm


    Happy Mental Health day!

    I am curious to hear what your parents have to say about the JetBlue flight attendant who used the evaculation slide. Do they think his dramatic exit was warranted or that he should be kept in jail? Do tell.

  • Chelsea (Chelsea's Chew and Run Fun)
    August 10, 2010 at 9:14 pm

    Jenna, it must be said: You’re TOO gorgeous!

    Anywho, pedicures, honey topped cornbread, and chocolate chip cookies should be integrated in the treatment of clinically depressed people. How could those three things not lift someone’s spirits?

  • Krista (kristastes)
    August 10, 2010 at 9:26 pm

    Mental health days are some of my favorite days EVA. Glad you enjoyed yours πŸ™‚ oh and that cookie…must. bake. tomorrow.

  • Samantha @ Food Edu
    August 10, 2010 at 9:29 pm

    Yumm…. & Tapatio too? Perfection.

  • Amanda
    August 10, 2010 at 9:48 pm

    Pedicures and BBQ? It sounds too good to be true : )

  • Heather
    August 10, 2010 at 10:40 pm

    Glad you enjoyed your mental health day, trashy magazines are usually involved in mine too πŸ™‚

    Dinner looks yummy!

  • Allie (Live Laugh Eat)
    August 10, 2010 at 10:40 pm

    Haha love that face πŸ™‚ There’s no such thing as moderation when it comes to BBQ, pedicures and trashy mags.

  • sarah (the SHU box)
    August 11, 2010 at 2:41 am

    so therapeutic! i applaud the mental health day πŸ™‚ i think they should be built into regular work schedules.

  • polly
    August 11, 2010 at 3:53 am

    My favorite post ever.
    It included Almanzo story, the beautiful YOU, and just plain ol’ eats and love and life.

    YOU are treasured and loved, my sweet little sis!!!

  • Allie
    August 11, 2010 at 4:01 am

    great mental health day. now if they’d only bring some legit BBQ up to new england.

  • Angharad
    August 11, 2010 at 4:13 am

    Um yeah. I need to start making pedicures and pulled pork part of my mental health days! Im glad you photograhed the tapatio – that stuff rocks my world. Yay for texans who love bbq. Cant wait to see where he takes you in austin!

  • eatmovelove
    August 11, 2010 at 4:16 am

    I love beans as a side dish – to pork is even better.
    I think your day was a success.

  • Abby
    August 11, 2010 at 4:22 am

    Yaaaay for mental health day!! I like your style, I think pulled pork has to be one of my all time favorite things in the world… nothing like it! And the cornbread, WOW, that looked amazing!
    It is so important to take time for yourself, kudos to you!!

  • katie
    August 11, 2010 at 4:39 am

    What’s better for mental health than some BBQ in the summertime? Nothing.

  • Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg
    August 11, 2010 at 4:44 am

    Oh man, I haven’t had bbq in so long…it’s a lot less fun as a vegetarian πŸ™‚

  • Suzanne de Cornelia
    August 11, 2010 at 5:03 am

    Gorgeous pix of you! Saving the world one pedicure & plate of barbque at a time. If the poor maxed-out JFK flight attendant had followed suit we wouldn’t be reading about his f-bombs, swiped beer, jumping the ‘chute and landing in jail. Just sayn’. πŸ˜‰

  • jenna
    August 11, 2010 at 5:12 am

    πŸ™‚ I’ve been craving pull pork BBQ like nobodies bussiness!! yum! that corn bread looks amazing!

  • Heather @ Sugar & Spice
    August 11, 2010 at 5:30 am

    Pedicures and BBQ sounds like an amazing combo – glad it worked as a mental health day!

  • elliebelle
    August 11, 2010 at 5:33 am

    I just made caramel corn with a kick using tapatio last night! πŸ™‚

  • Nicole - yuppie yogini
    August 11, 2010 at 5:38 am

    You can take the girl out of the south…

  • faith @ gracefulfitness
    August 11, 2010 at 5:42 am

    Yes, everything in moderation. This is a concept I have been trying to put into practice for over a dozen years and I feel like finally, at 29 and not a moment to soon, I am starting to live it. And I feel fantastic!

  • Amelia
    August 11, 2010 at 5:59 am

    Great looking BBQ for not being in the South. I need to go out one more time this week before leaving Charleston for Colorado.

  • RhodeyGirl
    August 11, 2010 at 6:12 am

    Your hair looks really pretty.

    I need a mental health day too, for pedis, trashy mags… and lots of TRASHY TV.

    Real Housewives is calling my name…

    • Krista (kristastes)
      August 11, 2010 at 6:33 am

      This comment needs a ‘like’ button that I can click! Real Housewives is my guilty pleasure but I don’t have cable. I am not ashamed to say this results in on-demand-loss-of-brain-cell real housewives marathons at my parents’ house πŸ™‚

  • SarAh
    August 11, 2010 at 6:22 am

    Mental health day looks like a success, you look gorgeous and rested!

  • Corinne
    August 11, 2010 at 6:37 am

    OMG that food looks A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!! I need to move to Texas LOL. You look really pretty on those pics!!

  • Camille
    August 11, 2010 at 7:18 am

    That cornbread looks amazing!

  • Sara
    August 11, 2010 at 8:13 am

    It’s NOT about everything in moderation.
    I thought this was a blog about healthy eating but does not seem to be.

    • Kate
      August 11, 2010 at 9:35 am

      I completely agree – this blog is not what it once was and the title is very misleading and inappropriate given Jenna’s indulgent lifestyle (run?) and eating habits. Why do you insist on telling readers how “moderate” you are re. your “occasional” eating frenzies? Why not just be honest re. your eating style…it is in no way similar to that of “healthy lifestyle bloggers.”

      • jenna
        August 11, 2010 at 9:37 am

        I’m sorry you feel that way—I’ve never pretended this is a diet blog. I went to school for pastry and baking for goodness sake! I’ve also always stressed the importance of eating everything in moderation and balancing it all out with an active lifestyle. There are many “healthier” blogs out there though that you might find more pleasing!

        • Becca
          August 11, 2010 at 1:05 pm

          Hi Jenna,
          I’ve been reading (read: lurking) for a few weeks (love your writing style–so entertaining!!) and I just wanted to comment on this thread because this blog (and others) have really been examples to me of a healthy lifestyle. For many years I thought I was being “healthy” by eschewing all things sugar and fat, and running a (self-imposed) minimum of 10 miles a day. Now I am learning that being healthy can (and should) involve allowing myself the freedom to enjoy the foods I once considered forbidden and focusing on things besides my daily workouts. It might even include taking a day off from running. Is this a blog about a weightloss driven health NUT? No. Is it an example of a person who consciously leads a healthy lifestyle while simultaneously enjoying her life? Absolutely. Thanks for reminding us that there’s more to life than daily runs and healthy adaptations of dessert recipes.

          P.S. re: “run?” I, for one, am not necessarily interested in reading daily updates about other people’s workouts. Furthermore, their absence in a blog does not signify their absence in the author’s life.

      • Amy
        August 11, 2010 at 1:20 pm

        I’m sorry, but a healthy lifestyle for one person/blogger does not necessarily correspond to what is considered a healthy lifestyle for another blogger. Just because there are certain trends in the healthy food blog sphere (ie. oatmeal…), doesn’t mean that another food blogger who strays from that norm no longer fits into the healthy lifestyle category.

        A healthy lifestyle incorporates activity and nourishing fuel. That said, the everything in moderation realm of thinking embraces health. Obsessing about calories and indulgent eats is not reflective of a healthy individual. No, I’m not advocating eating indulgent foods ALL the time… again, it’s all about moderation.

        Deprivation is not healthy.

    • Janna@Janna's Keeping it Real
      August 11, 2010 at 2:42 pm


      I was originally interested in reading your blog for the sheer fact that your “food philosophy” spoke to me (if you will). I have struggled my lifetime with periods of binge/restrictive eating, and i was so excited to finally find someone that actually ATE but still looked good doing it. it has been my savior, a number of times because as you say “moderation is key”. you have to pick and choose your indulgences, and not give in for just any ‘ol cookie/threesome with your guys ben&jerry…it needs to be worth it. that is exactly what you do. you never read about you having something and it was “just sub-par, but i ate it anyway”. all your eats are “delicious” and “the best”, but still in moderation. I say to just walk away from all these nay-sayers and just keep ‘doin what you’re doing lady!!!

  • Katherine
    August 11, 2010 at 8:33 am

    I like to think that nothing makes a girl feel more relaxed than a mani/pedi. Getting one today and I am so excited. Cookies don’t hurt either.

  • Rachael
    August 11, 2010 at 8:56 am

    Mental health days should be mandatory every once in awhile. I’d channel Giselle (in words alone) and say that they should be a law, but I don’t want to risk being seen as out of touch πŸ™‚
    Missing bbq. As an adopted Southerner (with a Georgia boy by my side), being up North for the summer, sans pulled-anything, just feels wrong.

  • Heather (Heather's Dish)
    August 11, 2010 at 9:03 am

    you are so pretty! and you know he’s a good catch when he takes you to a great BBQ place πŸ™‚

  • Bethany (One Girl's Taste on Life)
    August 11, 2010 at 9:13 am

    First of all, Jenna, that picture of you is priceless! I started laughing out loud when I saw it! Ah-mazing!

    Your post made me crave a local joint of my own, City Barbeque. My birthday is this weekend and I told the hubby that’s what I wanted for my birthday dinner. What a yummy place!

    Mental health days are always welcomed. Being in retail I rarely get one, but when I do they are cherished. Hope today is just as great as yesterday. πŸ™‚

  • Meredith @ An Epic Change
    August 11, 2010 at 9:17 am

    mmmm TapatΓ­o hot sauce!!! I lived in Guadalajara, Mexico, where that sauce originates, and I eat it on everything!!

  • Shayla
    August 11, 2010 at 12:33 pm

    Hey Jenna! I’m sorry you have to deal with these rude comments…I totally 110% agree in the everything in moderation rule. I used to be so strict with my diet and would end up binging…you know how that whole cycle goes!! It left me feeling miserable and depressed….but once I started reading your blog and others, I realized I can eat real food and indulge, in moderation, and still maintain a healthy weight and be happy! So a huge thanks to you for showing everyone that you can eat real food without deprivation and still be healthy and happy! ; )
    I also have to say you look beautiful and extremely happy in that picture, good for you! And btw, I really like your hair that length! ; )

  • Ramona
    August 11, 2010 at 3:18 pm

    I have just recently begun to read this blog and I like it! I’m not a baker, but I’ve seen some great ideas for foods that I would like to try. You seem like a cool person, Jenna!

    With that being said, I do not think that it is rude for someone to disagree with the author. Is it really the end of the world if someone thinks that this blog isn’t a healthy eating blog? I don’t think so. If dissent sparks discussion, it can be healthy.

  • Angela
    August 11, 2010 at 5:05 pm

    Rock On Jenna……

  • Missy
    August 11, 2010 at 6:45 pm

    Our society is warped…our views on food are irrational…good for you!!! It isn’t rocket science! Most people just deprive and deprive themselves so much, then they binge…don’t know how to moderate… most people have not been taught about moderation in their live…you are an inspiration to many women I’m sure…keep it up girl!!

  • Erica
    August 12, 2010 at 7:48 am

    Thank God for Texans. Or one in particular, right πŸ˜‰ And that pic of you is so beautiful. And you know I’m talking about the one with your cheeks puffed out. Bahahahahaha!

  • Arianna
    August 13, 2010 at 8:26 am

    That picture of you underneath the hot sauce is so gorgeous! So excited for the growth of ELR, such an inspiration! πŸ™‚

  • Arianna
    August 13, 2010 at 8:30 am

    life is about growth and indulging while taking care of ourselves. for those who are upset because your posts aren’t about workouts or salads, but real life enjoyment, there are many other blogs out there for them to read.

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