Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Why I'm changing

So what causes a farm girl, a food junkie, and a woman that loves to cook comfort foods for her kids want to change to cleaner healthier eating? Well, it's simple.
It started as I was laying in the bed with Cullen my then six year old, him crying of a "horrible headache". All he wanted was the darkness and to sleep.
 I slowly left the room and as the door clicked behind me I felt helpless.
His headaches were few when he was six maybe one or two every month.
When he turned seven they came to visit him more and more and finally we 
were told that he was having childhood migraines and that this was very common in children his age. I didn't buy it. I knew something was triggering them and I just had to find out what. I moved him to the front row of the van, wouldn't let him near a computer or video games. I started trying to look up home remedies and make him eat more healthy snacks in case it was a low sugar issue but nothing helped. 

Meanwhile I went to a doctor in Tennessee, because of adrenal symptoms, who believes that our bodies were created to heal themselves, if we would feed our bodies the right food. 
He put me on a gluten free, dairy free, meat free detox for 28 days.
 Sounds painful, huh? 
Well it really wasn't. I did my homework and was fired up to get started so I wouId start feeling better. I did research on gluten and decided to put my whole family to the test. So, this is the chronicles of living gluten, dairy, meat free for 28 days.
The family did a version of this. Gluten free, no dairy but some meat.
 Here is what I learned through the process.

Day 1. Started my new lifestyle for the next 28 days. I have a headache and feel very tired. The kids are having it rough. The sugar detox is going to be hard on them. They are eating every piece of fruit in my kitchen. I don't know if we can afford this. Channie and Cullen are having the worst detox, very hungry and feeling cranky. They're drinking lots of water and I'm feeding them three meals and two healthy snacks but they're still hungry. They were never this hungry on our former diet. (Lots of butter, cheese, homemade pizza etc.)

 Day 2. Woke up this morning feeling like I had never slept. Ugh....Felt flu like all day. I wake up with a headache and go to bed with one. Took a detox bath and felt better. The kids are still hungry all day. Their appetites have increased ten fold. I know we can't afford this.  They're eating twice as much now. Listened to a sermon on forgiveness and laid in the sunshine. Hoping my body gets over the hump sooooon. 

Detox Bath:
1/2 cup baking soda
1/2 cup Epsom salt
3 drops of Lavender oil

Day 3. My supper table looks like something out of a magazine. We have beautiful veggies, gourmet salads, incredible fruits. Just no bread and butter.
 Channie says, "can we make get ya married rolls?"
 Not right now baby girl.
She would eat two rolls or more at supper every night with tons of butter. Just because you're tiny doesn't mean you're healthy. Her little body craving the bread. 

When supper time came around everyone ate anything and everything that was put in front of them. They were more excited about trying new foods and came to love things they never had even tried. Cullen has not had a headache at all.

Day 4. Ordered a Berkey water system and walked for 30 minutes today. I am still very tired feeling and this cooking healthy meals is hard. You have to be on top of every meal. Because everyone is always hungry all of our meals have to be planned out carefully so we don't just bag it all and go out to eat. *sigh* I realized that the way I show love is by cooking for them and now because we're changing the way we eat, I feel kind of bad for not feeding them Pioneer Woman. 
Brown rice and roasted potatoes doesn't sound bad though.

Day 5. Cullen has been headache free for 5 days. 
The kids are starting to feel great. No more cravings or very little. Everyone is not so focused on food and more focused on other things. Maybe we will be able to afford this. I took them to the gym and we all swam for 2 hours. I'm still not feeling great. Flu like symptoms with no fever. The kids have a virus so I'm thankful I get to lay around and hold them and not do too much. 

Day 7. Still not feeling well. Its kind of frustrating. I want to feel better yesterday. Tired, drugged and in slow motion. Come on body, kick in. Cullen is still headache free. Small changes all around and I'm thankful.

Day 8. Still feel yucky..I couldn't go any where even if I wanted to. It's crazy to think I'm going to feel good again. I've lost some weight not sure maybe 5 lbs. Hoping the sun comes out tomorrow. The kids are eating less snacks and eating more at meal time.

Day 9. Feel drugged and slow moving. Learning to cook delicious healthy meals takes my mind off how bad I'm feeling. I always thought I ate healthy enough. Why is my body having to detox so hard? The kids are doing great...I would say adding organic meat and fruit smoothies has truly been the trick for them. I also make banana ice cream with almond milk and honey. It's awesome. I can't have it yet but the kids love it and I didn't have to buy as many groceries this week.  I have to prepare more and investigate what foods have gluten in them and avoid as many as those foods as possible. They are more expensive but so is the doctor and Cullen is still headache free.

Banana Smoothie:
Freeze 4 bananas
1 cup of almond milk
Handful of almonds
1 tablespoon of organic peanut butter
1 tablespoon honey

Day 10. Felt less clouded today, slept great last night. Felt better overall today. Thankful.

Day 11. Feel much better! I feel a little energetic:)

Day 12. Woke up feeling good. Clear headed, hopefully this will last. The sun is out..Fog lifting. 

Fast forward to day 22. Although I have stuck to a very strict diet (as well as Taylor) the kids have each gotten off on the weekend for special dinners or daddy pizza time. I'm not so naive to think that things won't come up but we get them right back on it at the next meal.   Cullen is still headache free and Channie is no longer having "stomach issues". She would eat and 20 mins later say, "my stomach hurts"...She has not had a stomach ache in 3 weeks.
Taylor feels better than she ever has. She said she will never go back to eating
the way we did.
I have lost 11 lbs and been swimming 4 days a week with the kids. I have energy again. I feel clear headed. I can think and I feel great! 

Some people don't believe a healthy diet can impact your life others just refuse to change. It's a hard transition and believe me when I say that.
But it's been 22 days and Cullen is still headache free.
I have not had to sneak out of a dark room and wonder what I could do to make him feel better.

So we will continue on our journey of healthy meals. We are learning to cook  healthy using lots of fruits and veggies.

Example Menu at The White House

 organic rice cereal, almond milk and bananas 
   gluten free oats with honey and raisins

hummus with veggie sticks
kale chips

sweet potatoes and quinoa 
green beans and steamed cabbage 
gluten free pasta with sauteed mushrooms and onions

banana ice cream
apples and organic peanut butter
chips (homemade from organic corn tortillas) and salsa

Mexican Night
(black beans, homemade salsa, homemade chips, guacamole, mexican rice)
Ratatouille over rice pasta
Garlic roasted potatoes with carrots, green beans and apple pecan salad

Friday, January 18, 2013

All of us...

"as you walk and eat and travel, be where you are. otherwise you will miss most of your life." 

I watch out my window, them pushing snow. How her little hands slid into pink gloves. My how they have grown. I am enjoying this season of life with
loose teeth
boys growing tall
the way she can read now
the way I had a little person laying next to me last night just because. 
Reaching over in the middle of the night and feeling the breathing. The life next to me.

The cup of coffee that was brought to my bed side.
The way he calls me his "beautiful bride" even
 though we've been married for almost 21 years.
 I, being self conscious, push my hair back realizing what I must
look like. He says I'm beautiful. I look down.
Could he still think that?
Really? I sip my coffee and we talk. Me bundled in covers
and slowly they come and climb under the covers with me.
Until it's all of us.
The night before me drifting off to sleep with a bed full and Andy Griffith.
All of us. 
This stage of gangly legs and toothless grins.
The nights they would rather be with us instead of without us.

I love the way winter slows us down.
I try and stay focused on my chores but my eyes keep looking heavenward.... wanting to see the sun.
It feels like forever since her warmth clothed me.
Be content I keep telling myself and myself responds only half the time.

I want what I don't have.

The warmth of a day.

More time with my husband who seems
to be in a busy season.

Everyone well at the same time.

More time to work out.

More time to sit here and write out my every day so when I look back
I'll remember, they'll remember.

More More More

Not all bad things but things I crowd my mind and heart with. 

Be content in whatever season you're in

I must continue to practice this.

I have to go out in the cold....walking through the snow to check on the numerous animals on the farm. The crunching under foot and the flakes in my hair.
The kitten who blends into the beautiful back drop of the painting of my life.
The cow named Rosebud who moos at me as I go to check on her one more time. 

My house warm.
My stove holding a huge pot of soup.
My fireplaces going.
Hot chocolate for everyone, warm blankets and long books.

Am I sure I'm living in this moment instead of
getting through it?
Can I smell and see and taste that it is good?

My life is good.

Trees heavy with the beauty of the color white
My heart free to love deeply these portraits of God's.
His paint brush so beautiful on the farm and on
my life and on me.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Learn to

“Learn to like what doesn’t cost much.
Learn to like reading, conversation, music.
Learn to like plain food, plain service, plain cooking.
Learn to like fields, trees, brooks, hiking, rowing, climbing hills.
Learn to like people even though some of them may be different… Different from you.
Learn to like to work and the satisfaction doing your job as well as it can be done.
Learn to like the song of birds, the companionship of dogs.
Learn to like gardening, puttering around the house, and fixing things.
Learn to like the sunrise and sunset, the beating of rain on the roof and windows, and the gentle fall of snow on a winter day.
Learn to keep your wants simple and refuse to be controlled by the likes and dislikes of others.”
-Lowell C. Bennion

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Don't pass down unchipped china

 The needs piling up with flu season and 6 kids down. My teaching must continue even when I don't feel like it or feel like I have the time. It's the best time to teach love and empathy when tempers are short and fevers are hot- they need forgiveness. I attempt to teach them to walk the road with love and sympathy because it might be you next with red cheeks and feeling bad. 

I spend my day teaching compassion and forgiveness. Yes, teaching.
Some people think that it's something you're born with, others think it's something you'll pick up some where along the way. Jesus taught His disciples saying, "blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." " Blessed are the merciful for they shall receive mercy." 
Don't we know all of this?? If we were born to it then why did he teach it? I'm not that great of an example. I'm still learning. My children were not born with mercy. They were not born knowing how to love or show love. I had to teach them. So I press on teaching things like "bless those who persecute you". Forgive people who hurt you. 
You have to love your brothers and sisters now and build a relationship that will  still be standing years from now. Seldom done these days. Families scattered, brothers and sisters living miles from each other and no relationship.  It takes work and forgiveness to be in any kind of relationship they need to be practicing these skills now at an early age.    

I watch him check her temperature on a rainy day and she gently leans in and rest her head on his arm. He's whispering to her that she's gonna be okay. She trusts. She has no reason not to and he does what I've taught him. Nurture, care for the sick. When your sister is sick comfort her and serve her.This will do you good to know for your entire life.  Do small things with great love. Now before you go off thinking we are this perfect family I will remind you that we are not. My children fight and fuss. They are short tempered at times and they have to be reminded a lot to be gracious..(they're a lot like their mama.) Just setting the record straight. I never want to be a stumbling block to you that read my personal journal/thoughts..        

The wood on my table continues to be my go to place to teach and love on them. With a table the possibilities are endless. The hours spent serving at and feasting at my table are priceless. So why do I go through so much trouble to make supper so special? Birthdays a celebration; losing your first tooth a day to remember? Christmas a time for traditions, going out to restaurants, going on vacations that they will remember for their whole life? Just intentional everyday living. Unfortunately our world is screaming out to our kids and I want my voice to be heard in their lives. So I give them my time, my energy, when they're sick I try and  make a sweet dwelling place and give them comfort, When I'm sick they in return give me double the attention and love.   So I don't put my kids to bed and have a party or save the best for when the kids aren't around. We give them the best. We want them to know they are worthy of our best.   

  Our mission field to our children starts at our table. Don't pass down unchipped china, let it be banged up with lots of memories scattered around your dining room.

So during this season of flu and ear-aches I slow down and devote my time and energy to those around me. As I write I have a fevered up little girl laying on me. Exhausting work but the pay is incredible.  


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