When The Unexpected Happens {an explanation of my absence}

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We were finally getting into a groove, I was comfortable with cooking clean, nutritious and gluten free meals that my family actually liked. Weekly visits to my chiropractor were significantly helping my digestive system and managing my endometriosis pain.  I was busily planning for homeschooling 1st grade to my daughter, planning fun preschool crafts and projects for my son and training my baby to take a long nap so we could accomplish school in peace. Then it happened. Of course, I should have guessed that because I was getting comfortable with our new routine that a huge curve ball would be thrown into my court. Last month, I found out I was pregnant with our 4th baby.

 

This came as a HUGE surprise. We always wanted four babies, but right now, seriously? My baby just turned one! I will admit, I was completely overwhelmed and felt scared. You see, my pregnancies have typically been very rough. Morning sickness that lasts all day and night for weeks on end, cysts that rupture, babies that want to be born early causing me to go on bed rest, along with all the other joys of pregnancy 🙂 I did not know how I was going to keep our “routine” that we had worked so hard to perfect while growing another baby inside me.

 

Here I am, five weeks later, and we are still “making it”….barely. Morning sickness has been extreme, thus my non-posting for a long time. Cooking has been non-exsistant. But, we have survived. My husband has stepped up so much by slowing down his work schedule so he can be available to help, take- out has been frequent, my six year old daughter has been amazing and served me in so many ways. She helps with breakfast and lunch, changes the occasion diaper when I cannot handle the smells and managed to maintain a happy heart. I love my family.

 

As scared as I am with the thought of managing four babies under six, I cannot help but be humbled and grateful for the opportunity to raise four little people, MY little people. Doctors told me when I was younger that I would never have children. Here I am, pregnant with a healthy fourth baby and we have had no help, beside a surgery to clean out some endometriosis 7 years ago.

 

I am almost nearing the end of my first trimester and I am hoping to be back to posting and cooking soon. For now, it will still be sporadic. We just finished our first week of homeschooling and I am trying to figure out a new normal for our family during this season.

 

I will leave you with an introduction to my new favorite non-GMO company, The Ginger People. They make a variety of different products and some of them have become genuine life savers for me! I encourage you to find their products in your nearest health food store and give them a try! Here is a little more about them:

“Established in 1984, The Ginger People® began its mission to produce the world’s finest range of ginger products and ingredients. Why? Herbalists have used ginger for thousands of years to restore vital energy, stimulate circulation and relieve countless maladies including nausea, headaches and arthritis. Modern science backs what the ancients have known for centuries: Ginger is one of nature’s most powerful herbal remedies. Add in ginger’s versatile flavor and culinary prowess, and it’s clear why we’re passionate about this venerable spice.”

 

Thank you for understanding my absence, you are all the best! I have continued to gain more readers and encouragement from you, even with the lack of posting or new recipes. I love blogging about our journey and hearing from you! Thank you for supporting me.

The “Art” Of Health {updated budget & a new business}

Summer. Relaxing days spent outdoors blowing bubbles and lounging by the pool while the children swim happily. No fighting, everyone can swim without some sort of floatation device needing to be blown up. They can go potty alone, feed themselves and always keep a tidy room oh and no schedules, homework or field trips. What a dream. I don’t know why I wake up most days and think this is reality? We lead a very busy life, probably more busy than most and the last two years has been insane.

 

My Husband and his Brother have been tirelessly working hours on end, after their normal day job, creating an iPhone app. The last two years I have given up my Husband to pursue his dream, creating something with his brother for the iPhone. The day has finally arrived, the app is FINISHED and releasing in the iTunes store TODAY. I could not be more proud of them and I must say the app is really awesome. Here is a little bit about the company:

Screen Shot 2013-06-24 at 8.50.37 PM is an iPhone app that enables artists to share original art with their community and locals to find and buy art. A wall often exists between regular people and the art world. Artists, whether hobbyist or professional, have no simple way to make their art accessible, and everyone else has no simple way to connect with local artists and purchase their work. Finestra changes all that by giving people a chance to preview art on their own wall while hearing the artists themselves tell the story behind the art. Potential buyers can email an artist to set up an appointment or get directions to see the art in person right away. Artists use the app to easily capture, manage, and promote their work professionally, or on a casual basis. Art surrounds us, and Finestra connects us through art to restore the role of artists in our communities and re-imagine our living spaces.

You can watch a 1 min promo video: 

<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/61433410″>Finestra Art App</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/user16940238″>Finestra Art App</a> on <a href=”http://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

It would be really awesome if you could go like them on FB: Finestra! Also, if you have an iPhone go download the app and check it out and request your city! You won’t be disappointed 🙂

Thank you for letting me go outside my normal posting to brag on my Hubby. Now back to foodie talk 🙂 The last 4 months has been a time of learning and figuring out “what works” for our family. Thankfully we have finally gotten into a pretty nice groove and I have tailored down our budget A LOT!

After the great purge of GMO’s from our house we were left pretty bare. I had to do a lot of stocking up on normal everyday items that I threw away. It was an expensive first few weeks! Thankfully I have figured things out and I have barely stepped foot into Whole Foods in 3 months! Crazy. I hear from several people that “it was just too expensive”. I get that. It IS expensive. But, you have to weigh the pro’s and con’s of cheap food now… potential health problems in the future or a little more expensive food now and great health later.

 

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Here is the break down of a general week in food for us. First, I get this really amazing farmer’s market basket every week that consists of local produce. I get a large basket and I typically add on 18 organic farm fresh eggs. It generally costs me around $30 dollars a week for everything you see pictured above. I also get my local raw honey from here for a great price! Do you have a local farmers market or farm share near you that you love? I would highly suggest looking into it if you do not know.

I do the rest of my shopping at Publix and Costco. Publix is generally just for spices, organic chicken, milk and gluten free items. Costco is awesome for frozen organic veggies, snacks and organic beef! We spend around $90.00-$100.00 a week in these places, sometimes it is less depending on what toiletries we need. So, in a month we generally spend $490.00 on groceries and toiletries.

I will do a much more detailed post in the future, but for now I need to help my Husband finish the last touches for our app release party here tomorrow night.

 

Day Fifty Two. Eat Healthy + Gain Weight = Happy.

Day Fifty Two.

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I never thought I would see such a drastic change in my son just by changing his eating habits. I knew that eating healthy has it’s benefits, but I would have never guessed I would get these results so quickly. This update on my sons health makes me tear up with happiness. All those nights spent worrying if my son was growing, why was he hurting, does he have some major illness, etc…all gone, just a memory and a memory that seems like it was years ago, not just a few months.

If you are just joining my blog let me fill you in on our journey. My three year old son suffered several “symptoms” that I could not let pass by anymore and I had to get answers.

  1. He never had a normal bowel movement, it was always diarrhea and frequently would have whole undigested food in it.
  2. Horrible, horrible foul smell from BM’s.
  3. Was very irritable.
  4. He wet the bed.
  5. Would wake up several times throughout the night whether it be a bad dream, tummy ache or just restlessness. At 3 years old he still had only “slept through the night”  maybe 3 times. Sleep stretches would be no more than 3 hours at a time.
  6. Nail biting.
  7. Poor weight gain, which eventually started to get to weight loss (this is when we took him to medical doctors).
  8. Poor growth, short stature, although this was less concerning being that both my husband and myself are shorter.
  9. Extremely picky eater. Poor appetite.

It might not seem like a lot to you, but for me as a mom I just knew something was not right. We went through several different tests which all came back clear for any major problems. Whew. All we discovered was that he had high fat content in his stools and had trouble with nutrient absorption. Our GI Specialists suggested taking him off gluten to see how he responded.

We not only took him off gluten but we proceeded with a 60 day detox of all GMO’s. I started seeing results almost immediately. His attitude seemed different. He was a happy kid again, as the weeks go by things keep improving.

  1. His bowel movements look normal. No more diarrhea. Food is processed and it smells SO much better.
  2. He was happy. Still whines like your normal child, but nothing like before.
  3. No more bed wetting! Bye-bye pull ups!
  4. Sleeps 12+ hours a night. Seriously, amazing.
  5. Still bites his nails, but I think it has to do more with just being nervous. It did stop for awhile, but that has returned.
  6. February 2nd weighed in at 31 lbs. June 2nd weighed in at 35.5 lbs! 
  7. February 2nd he was still wearing 24 month clothing. June 2nd he now fits 4T perfectly!
  8. “Better” eater, still picky, but he does not gag on food anymore.

I cannot say enough about our new lifestyle and how much it literally has changed our life. Whenever we slip out of our diet due to a vacation or pure laziness I can tell the difference. It is really weird how quickly your body responds to poor eating habits. You start craving sweets and fats more, you get irritable,  it’s a beast. The opposite happens if you increase healthy foods and good fats. Your mood lightens, your are happy, you feel energized and sweets are a thing of the past (haha, yeah right!).

I know I have been lacking on posting, Summer has been super busy. I know you understand, right? Our littlest started walking, she is such a monkey and always into trouble. The other two are just as busy as ever, parties to attend, vacations, swim lessons, etc… I really do want to be posting more and cooking more but life has taken over. I will get back into a regular routine very soon. All Summer vacations are over at this point. We just have one more major event… My Husband and Brother-in-law have been working tirelessly on creating an iPhone app and I have been writing for them as well. I will be announcing their app Thursday, it goes public Friday, and I couldn’t be more excited for them!

 

 

 

Tell Kroger You Do Not Want GMO Salmon!

I received this tonight in my email and wanted to share it with you. Please take the few seconds it takes to sign this petition! Thank you!

 

Tell Kroger to take the lead and sign the Pledge for Genetically Engineered-Free Seafood today!


In March, Institute for Responsible Technology Food Fund Policy, worked with Friends of the Earth and other partners to launch the Campaign for Genetically Engineered-Free Seafood, and we hit the ground running!

Now Kroger, the nation’s largest grocery store chain, has made a statement too — they told consumers they have “no intention” of selling genetically engineered salmon, but also left the door open to sell it if it’s approved by FDA.

Take action today and let Kroger know you do not want to see genetically engineered seafood in its stores and demand that it sign the Pledge for GE-Free Seafood?

We know Kroger can and should do better and follow the lead of its major competitors with a FIRM commitment to not sell genetically engineered seafood in its 3,500 grocery stores across the U.S., including Ralphs, Fred Meyer, GFC and Food 4 Less. As we all know, “intentions” can change and we need strong company policies to protect our oceans from the risks of genetically engineered fish.

We’re so close to stopping genetically engineered fish and we need your help today to push America’s #1 conventional grocery store to make a solid public commitment to keep it off their shelves.

The Food and Drug Administration has stated that it won’t likely require companies to label genetically engineered seafood, leaving consumers no way of avoiding it at the market. By signing the Pledge for GE-Free Seafood, grocery stores, restaurants, chefs and other food companies make it clear that they will not knowingly purchase or sell genetically engineered salmon or other genetically engineered seafood.

By agreeing not to sell genetically engineered seafood, Kroger and its banner stores could go a long way toward making sure genetically engineered seafood is dead in the water in the United States and would signal a huge victory for consumer rights.

Take action to tell Kroger to protect consumer rights and sign the Pledge for GE-Free Seafood!