Friday, November 14, 2014

New Sessions!

Whenever I find these I am posting them because I think it's so important to take control of your health and learn and research as much as you can.  I usually put these on at night as I'm doing chores.

This session is called the Digestion Sessions.  It's already in progress and I've learned new things!  Love that!  Each group of videos is available for 49 hours.  Enjoy!

November Goals

My before and after P90x3 pictures
I keep meaning to sit down and write this and I keep putting it off.  Now we are almost halfway through November!  So this can serve as both a goal posting and a halfway update.

I post a monthly healthy goal post on Instagram every month but there isn't a lot of room to post long explanations for why my goals are what they are.  Above you see my before and after P90x3 pictures.  Great progress right?  Yes and no.

I finished P90x3 in September and while physically my results were good, my moods have been way off.  I feel like I have been WAY more snappy with the kids.  October was pretty stressful for me because Daddy was working late every night and every Saturday and every Sunday we had plans.  I need breaks.  I need nights out alone and days with no plans.

And I still have 5 lbs that will not leave. I try not to worry about the scale and if I looked my best I wouldn't but I know I've looked better.

So I decided that in November I would focus on mental health.  I keep hearing again and again that stress can cause you to hold onto weight.  It may or may not be the reason I'm holding on to mine but it never hurts to focus on mental health.

My workout is now Metabolic Aftershock which is 20 minutes 3x a week.  Sounds crazy right?  But I feel just as fit as I did when I finished P90.  I will post my after pictures so we can compare but even if I lose a little muscle it will be worth it because my moods have totally stabilized.  No more grumpy mommy!!  The more I hear on High Intensity Training instead of long workouts the more I am convinced.

Walking every day was a goal I posted on Instagram but it's just not happening because it's dark too early so I've changed that to Tuesdays doing Total Synergy (weights) from p90x3 and Thursday doing Yoga from P90x3.  You really aren't supposed to do anything else with the Metabolic Aftershock program but I find I'm losing my rhythm not working out every day.  I need to be in "wake up and work out" mode.  Hopefully having a workout to do every day will keep me focused.

My other goals were making jewelry which I have been doing on the weekends.  It makes me so happy!!

I also quit my three month sugar fast.  I think this was really important for me...the fast.  I've always had crazy sugar cravings.  I feel like with the Holidays rolling around, I don't want to be stressing about food and what I can and cant have.  I plan to be very conscience about it.  I've already had a treat here and there but have been very conscious not to let it be a nightly occurrence.  Hopefully, my old habits of turning to a tasty treat for a pick me up are long gone.  I may need to do another Whole 30 in January to get back on track but that's okay.

Lastly, for November I wanted to take time to be Thankful.  I decided to involve the family with this one.  We have made it a dinner time tradition this month to name things we are thankful for.  If I forget, Buddy reminds me.

I focus so much of my time on our food.  I also spent a lot of time working out in the last few months.  I just think there is more to the picture.  I'll post my results at the end of the month.

A Paleo Cheese Substitute

A year and a half ago we took gluten out of our diets for Boogie who was having a major reaction to it.  While this helped the major problems she was having with self control and behavior I have never felt like we were totally dialed in.  She still had stomach episodes here and there and taking corn out would help then it wouldn't.  A few weeks ago she was having up to 10 stomach aches every day so I told her I wanted to help her and asked if she was willing to take out dairy and grains completely.  She agreed and her stomach aches have almost disappeared completely.

She has done such a good job making good choices to heal her body.  She even came up with an idea for a recipe hack all by herself!

A few months ago I made this Cheesy Chicken recipe from Empowered Substenance.  It was a huge hit.  The chicken really did taste cheesy!   It is in our rotation every few weeks now.

When Bella and I were talking about Thanksgiving meals and what grain free things I was making and what she would miss she mentioned that she would really miss cheesy potatoes.  My mom makes a cheesy potato casserole similar to this every Thanksgiving.  Then she said "MOM!  I know!  Use the cheese sauce from the cheesy chicken!"

Well we tried it and it worked!  Obviously it's not exactly the same texture.  But it really does taste like cheesy potatoes.  Boogie was a very happy camper.

This morning as I was getting ready to cook the squash for another batch of cheesy potatoes I got another great idea.  I have been missing broccoli cheese soup BIG time as it gets colder.  It's practically a once a week meal around here when it gets cold.  Gluten free broccoli cheese soup is easy but dairy free?  The cheese sauce!  Of course!

I cooked a few shallots in butter (yes I realize butter is dairy.  It doesn't seem to bother her.  Cheese absolutely does).  Then I added 2 heads worth of broccoli florets and 3 cups broth to the pan.  After the broccoli was tender I put the soup in my blender until is was nice and smooth then I put it back in the pot and added 2 cups of cheese sauce.  It was pretty thin so I made a slurry of the sauce and 2-3 TBS arrowroot powder and added that in too.  It worked!  It's delicious!!  Boogie was so excited when she got him.  I scored major mom points!

Now, to nitpick...I would definitely use more broccoli next time.  I like to have a few chunks in my broccoli cheese so I would probably double the broccoli or do some broccoli and some carrots.  I was just working with what I had.  Instead of blending it all I would take out some broccoli first.  It might also work with using almost milk instead of broth.  I just had some broth I needed to use it.

You could probably also cook the butternut squash right in with your veggies and blend all at the same time then add in the additional cheese sauce ingredients (I used butter and used almond milk instead of cream because it's what I had.  Usually I use unsweetened coconut yogurt.  It's honestly pretty forgiving!  I also add nutritional yeast for even more cheesy flavor)

It really is a tasty substitute and I'm so happy I stumbled across the original recipe by Empowered Sustenance! 

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Mental Health Day

My dad and I have started these date days to our favorite rock hunting spot.   We mostly collect agates but we are suckers for all pretty rocks, especially green ones, and we also collect sea glass for Boogie.  I call these day my mental health days because I'm doing something (nerdy) that I love, and I'm in nature and there is nothing more therapeutic than the sound of crashing waves.

This magical spot has all these wonderful pitted formations in the rocks formed by the pebbles and the ocean.

Heaven right?  Well maybe not to something who doesn't give a hoot about rocks but to the rock lover this is paradise.

We even found our own private beach.  No one else is ever there.  There are tons of pebbles instead of sand and treasures galore.

This was my loot just for that day. I know it's completely nerdy but it truly does make me happy.

Chicken Shenanigans

 We have two chickens.  It's going to be six real soon but for the moment these two are keeping me busy!  Their wings were clipped a few months ago but they have since molted so they started pulling this stunt recently....

That's our patio swing they are on top of.  Fortunately, we could reach them up there and put them back in their rubbermaid shed turned coop (these are low budget chickens) On Saturday night I had to run out to the store when they normally go to bed and when I got home I checked to make sure they were in bed.  Well, Pepper (the black one) was on top of the swing so I put her back in bed thinking Dorothy was already in bed.  Dorothy was nowhere to be found.  I figured she would show up in the morning.

The next morning she was nowhere to be found.  I started freaking out thinking she had jumped the fence.  There is nothing behind our house but some shrubbery and a road.  I woke Daddy up and Boogie and I circled the block looking for her.  After three loops we gave up and as we pulled in the driveway Baby came out yelling that she found Dorothy.  

She was in a tree.  We don't have trees in our backyard.  There are trees that hang over our fence from behind.  She was in one of those.  So, still in my pjs, I got out the ladder and tried to coax her down.  Well that backfired because she flew over the fence into the shrubbery.  Giving my girls quite the thrill, I hopped over the fence in my crazy pjs and chased Dorothy around for a few minutes.  Finally, I caught her and threw her back to our backyard.  Then I had to figure out how to get back over the fence.  there was no WAY I was walking back around the block in these pjs...

We all laughed and thought it was a fluke until dinner last night when Baby looked out the window and screamed "The chickens are in the trees!"  Because of the time change I wasn't even paying attention to what they were doing yet thinking I had another hour.

See that black thing in the tree way up there?  That's my chickens..


I decided they really needed a perch.  I had not made them one because they seemed perfectly happy huddled on the pallet in the back but clearly their perching instincts are strong so today in the 40 minutes that I had with no kids (Bunny at therapy and Buddy at preschool). I cut down some branches and made a perch.  I even bought my own hammer because Daddy didnt know where his was. 

I was pretty darn proud of myself.  I modified it a little more tonight after watching Pepper try to use it.  I added another branch across and some short branches on the sides for steps.

After school, I asked the girls to catch the chickens so I could clip their wings.  Not an easy task because Dorothy wants nothing to do with us but they did it!!  They were really worried about losing our girls! 

Tonight's bedtime was still an ordeal because they were trying to fly back to the tree and the swing.  They couldn't make it and Boogie kept blocking their way so they would be forced to go in their coop.  Hopefully, the perch will make them happy and we can be done with the drama once and for all!

Getting Creative

My first necklaces in over 3 years!!  It feels good to be creating again!