Friday, August 7, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins

1. Iced Coffee is my favorite summertime drink.

2. My favorite John Hughes movies is Ferris Buehler's Day Off.

3. A super soft baby blanket is something I love to touch.

4. The full moon reminds me about what's possible.

5. I'm very tired and wondering if my meds are working right now.

6. When daylight fades all I want to do is chill.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to chilling, tomorrow my plans include reading many books and Sunday, I want to celebrate my nephew's birthday!

To participate in Friday Fill-Ins or to read more please click on the graphic above.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Doubles the Crap

Will I ever stop being a total frak-up?


This day started out so well... but like a lot of days that start out well, it ended with me frakking something up.


Day after day after day.

How's that for recovery, eh? Its a downward spiral, an infinite regress, this pessimism. You screw something up. You feel like crap. You then realize that you should have better perspective on everything, so you feel bad about feeling like crap. It just doubles the crap you feel.

And it never ends.

Thank God for meds.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Kitchen Tip Tuesday

This week's kitchen tip is so exciting... I could barely wait to put it up! If you like iced coffee, but you don't want to shell out four bucks at Starbucks, try this tip: Freeze extra coffee in ice cube trays to make delicious and free iced coffee in the afternoon.

Here's how you do it- Make extra coffee in the morning. When you're done with your hot cup, turn off the pot. Free the leftovers in ice cube trays, reserving some of the coffee for cooling in the fridge. When the cubes are hardened and you're ready for the afternoon pick-me-up, just fill your cup with the coffee ice cubes and reserved coffee and PRESTO! Undiluted, yummy iced coffee for pennies!!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins

1. Not being at Comic Con tomorrow is not the end of the world.

2. Sitting here, listening to the sound of rain falling, I dream of returning to the beautiful Lake District and walk the Loop again.

3. Vegan Cinnamon Bun Ice Cream tastes so good!

4. Sometimes, putting others first is easy.

5. Childbirth is breathtaking, really.

6. Well, maybe there is a way I can get all my laundry done tonight.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to going to bed, tomorrow my plans include going to San Diego and seeing Bear in concert and Sunday, I want to recuperate!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

It's What's For Dinner!

-Three Packet Pot Roast made in the slow-cooker with onions and carrots

-Garlic Mashed Potatoes

-Green Salad

It's What's For Dinner!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Petty Squabbles

You know, I have to say that I am pretty darn sick of petty squabbles between Christians. All this name-calling and rabid desire to call people out for stuff they write. Its as though people cannot resist having the last word on things.

I used to be one of those people.

Don't they ever get exhausted?

All this back and forth- blog posts and comments and defenses and point-by-point interactions with every single line, telling people to grow up, and just being deliberately mean. Were I an unbeliever gazing at some of the crap I witnesses today in the blogosphere, I'd have run away fast, shaking my head and telling myself that if this is the way Christians behave towards EACH OTHER, why in heck would I want to join their club?

I think blogging is a fantastic medium. Don't get me wrong about that. I have two blogs... well, more than that, but I don't write on them... but sometimes I feel like blogging was the worst thing to ever happen to Christian women.

When else have Christians been able to behave so immaturely, so uncharitably, and not be held accountable for it?

Now, I am not above reproach here. No siree Bob... but I've repented and no longer engage in that kind of thing. I still attack issues, but I try to stay away from people as much as possible. That's why I don't write about a certain Anti-Feminist Matriarch on WWF anymore. Its very difficult to keep posts about her away from the personal because so much of what she writes betrays the kind of person she is. (Did I cross some lines here? Oops!) Well, I don't even read her blog anymore- can't stomach it.

I can't really stomach any of it anymore. I'm so over the internet.

Gotta go check my facebook...

Countercult Ministries Weigh in on Babywise

The Christian Research Institute and Midwest Christian Outreach on Babywise/Growing Families International/Gary Ezzo

The countercult ministries, Christian Research Institute and Midwest Christian Outreach have produced several well-documented articles that take a firm stand against the parenting ideas promoted by Gary and Anne-Marie Ezzo. These are articles are exceptional and should be read by all parents, not just those who support GFI/Babywise. Christian parents need to understand that Babywise is the secularized version of Ezzo's book Preparation for Parenting / Along the Infant Way and is part of a larger parenting program than just this one book. Ezzo's ministry, Growing Families International, has a lot of problems, not the least of which are its founder's integrity, credentials, and theology. I'm posting these articles, not to condemn parents who use these methods, but to raise awareness of the controversy surrounding Gary Ezzo. Babywise isn't just another parenting method... the problem is much larger than the book.

"Christian Families On the Edge: Authoritarianism and Isolationism Among Us"

"The Cultic Characteristics of Growing Families International"

"GFI: A Matter of Bias? Examining the Response of Growing Families International Criticism"

"New Challenges Face Gary Ezzo and Growing Families International"

Adventures in Ezzoland

Sunday, July 19, 2009

A Godly Symbiosis

The Belgic Confession states that one of the ways we know God is by observing his creation:

"First, by the creation, preservation, and government of the universe, since that universe is before our eyes like a beautiful book in which all creatures, great and small, are as letters to make us ponder the invisible things of God: his eternal power and his divinity, as the apostle Paul says in Romans 1:20."

I have long operated on the premise that the Bible and nature can be reconciled and that neither will lie to us. If they appear to contradict each other, either our interpretation of the Bible is false or the conclusions we draw from nature are false.

For example, there are folks out there who believe that the Bible's teachings on parenting contradict the needs that our children naturally and biologically require. They teach that, because parents need to establish their authority from birth, parents must feed their infant on a rigid schedule and must only attend to their needs when they cry. For example, only pick up a crying baby if they need to be changed or fed. A child's cry is their sinful way of trying to manipulate the parent, therefore, the parent must assess what the child wants or needs based on the type of cry.

Of course, the fact that parents are their children's authority is totally biblical. Parents have been charged with raising their children in the fear and admonition of the Lord. They are to teach and instruct their children in God's ways day and night. We are to admonish them and discipline them.

Does this mean, however, that we must follow Gary Ezzo's way of parenting in order to establish that authority?

I believe that we can look to the way God created mothers and babies to determine whether or not Ezzo parenting is Godly and, therefore, valid.

God has designed breastfeeding as the primary way mothers feed their babies- and for good reason. Human milk contains all the necessary vitamins, minerals, and fat that a baby needs in order to grow and develop. The exact make-up of the milk is changes for each child based on what they need. No two children will have the same milk from their mother. Breastmilk digests much more quickly than artificial baby milk. It usually takes between one and three hours for a baby to digest his meal, so it is entirely within the realm of possibility that he will be hungry again an hour after he is fed. The content of breastmilk changes throughout the day. In the evening, breastmilk tends to be fattier so the baby will feel full longer. As babies begin to learn the difference between night and day, they will often nurse longer in the evening in order to get the benefit of more hindmilk which will keep them feeling full for longer periods of time.

In other words, just like adults, infants are hungry at different times during the day and sometimes more often than usual depending on when they last ate and the content of the milk.

Milk production is stimulated by the nursing infant. The more the baby nurses, the more milk the mother will produce. Over time, as babies nurse less, mother produces less milk. Every few weeks or so, babies experience a growth spurt and require more milk from their mothers. They will naturally breastfeed more often and for longer periods of time in order to create a larger supply. If a baby is nursed every three hours or so and for only 20 minutes at a time, the mother's supply will not keep up with what the baby requires to grow. Supply drops. Nursing usually ends long before what is best for the baby.

In other words, God has designed the baby to tell the mother's body what it needs nutritionally.

Most women feel what is known as "let down" when their baby nurses. After a few minutes of rapid sucking, the milk moves from the upper ducts down into the middle part of the breast. But a baby need not suck for a mother to let down. Oftentimes, it is the baby's cry that will bring down a mother's milk. I've heard several stories from women who have been out on a quick errand and feel their milk let down. They come back home to find that the baby is fussing and is ready to eat.

Babies give cues when they are ready to eat. They are not capable of demanding to be fed, but they are capable of telling us when they need to nurse. Babies root and suck on things other than the breast. They squirm. They cry. They aren't demanding. They are do what they were created to do in order to let their mother's know that they need to nurse.

In other words, a mother's body is designed to respond physically to her baby's requirement for food and a baby's body is designed to signal his mother that he needs to nurse.

However, nursing for nutrition is not the only biological reason we breastfeed. Human babies also nurse for comfort. Their sucking reflex is so strong that if they are not pacified orally, then nothing will soothe them. Nursing for comfort is not an infant's attempt to manipulate his mother. He isn't physically capable of performing that kind of cognitive function yet let alone carry it out. Babies operate on instinct, much like animals. I know this troubles a lot of Christians and I understand that, but I think there's no denying that humans do share a number of physical characteristics with animals. All mammals nurse their infants. This is by God's design. Do all mammals nurse for comfort? I don't know. Probably not. Some mammals are capable of nurturing their young like humans do, but most do not, at least not in a way that we would find valuable. We are different from animals, after all.

Babies cry for all kinds of reasons- not just because they're hungry. This is their only way to communicate that something isn't right with them. Crying is not manipulative. How else is a baby supposed to tell you that his foot itches and he can't scratch it? How else is a baby supposed to tell you that he is lonely and wants some company? How else is a baby supposed to tell you that he likes the way fleece feels against his skin rather than polyester? His only method of communication is to cry. Its not a battle of wills- he isn't trying to force his parent to do what he wants. He is trying to communicate that he has a need.

Babies who are left to "cry it out", especially in the first few weeks, will eventually stop- not because they have learned their lesson- but because they have learned its of no use. Their parent isn't coming so there's no point. What Gary Ezzo points to as an establishment of parental authority is actually a child who has given up.

In other words, human mothers are designed by God to comfort their children with the breast. Babies are designed to be comforted orally and by physical closeness with the parent. Think about it- a baby has just spent nearly 10 months curled up in a ball surrounded by amniotic fluid and muscle. He hears constant noise 24 hours a day for most of that time. He is born and all of a sudden he's supposed to stretch out and soothe himself? Babies are designed by God to cry when they need something- and comfort is a major need for babies. I'm sure most of us would not appreciate it if, when we are upset, our closest loved one told us to soothe ourselves.

And finally, babies are not designed to sleep through the night for most, if not all, of the first six months of life (or longer!). Babies awaken at night as a sort of defense mechanism against SIDS. It is not ideal for an infant to fall into the deepest stages of sleep. His nervous system is still developing. Babies who fall into a deep sleep will often forget to breathe. One of the reasons breastmilk is so quickly digested is so that the baby will not sleep through the night but awaken to eat. Babies physically require a minimum of 6 feedings in a 24 hour period. If you're not night- nuring, you're skipping at least one of those feedings.... minimum. Its one thing of the baby establishes that pattern himself. Its quite another to have that pattern forced on him by a parent who is intent on telling their baby when to be hungry and when to sleep.

Personally, I'm not at all impressed when someone says their two month old infant sleeps through the night. My first thought is- at what cost? And considering that God has not designed our babies to sleep through the night, I question why parents are so eager to force this unnatural pattern on their children. Well, I know why- they want to sleep! But really, its only for a season.

God has created a wonderful symbiosis between parent and child and, more specifically, between mother and child. He has designed our breasts to feed our young. They fill with milk especially designed for the specific baby. Milk supply is established based by the baby based on how often and how long they nurse. Babies are designed to be comforted orally and they are not physically or psychologically capable of manipulating their parents. They are also designed to awaken in the night. Aside from the fact that young infants physically need to be fed at night in order to optimally grow and develop.

Parental authority is important- I'm not trying to downplay that- but I think it behooves us to really consider how we establish that authority and at what cost. I believe we must look at the Bible and nature to tell us how to nurture our children. Our children, by nature, cue feed, cry for comfort, and wake up at night. And mothers, by nature, use their breasts and their arms to offer that comfort.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins

1. Pasta and Arrabiata sauce make a quick and easy dinner.

2. For the Children's Sake is the book I'm reading right now

3. July brings back memories of birthdays, 4th of July celebrations and lighting fireworks in the street at Mike and Judy's.

4. That Gary Ezzo is a snake was obvious.

5. They say if you tell your dreams, they'll never come true.

6. Its always wise to think it over.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to hanging out with my husband, tomorrow my plans include going to the gym and sorting through baby clothes, and Sunday, I want to go see Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Entitlement is for Sissies

So often, we moms have a sense of entitlement when it comes to our "me" time. Our attitude often sounds like "I just spent the day training x number of kids and they've all been disobedient and I haven't sat down one time so you're going to watch the kids for me, honey, while I go to Starbucks and read a book. I deserve it."

I know I'm soooo guilty of this.

How many times have I "rewarded" myself for doing the most mundane stuff that I should be doing anyway? How many times have I felt slighted because my husband didn't complement me on the clean house (when I've managed to get it there!!) the minute he walked through the door? Didn't he NOTICE that all the laundry was folded and put away?

And then, when I settle down, I remind myself that he doesn't get rewarded at work when he gets his reports in on time. Nobody thanks him for doing the work he is SUPPOSED TO DO anyway. Granted, he does get paid, but I think that's beside the point.

The point, for us housewives, is that we aren't doing this for a reward. We do this because its our calling. We do this because it pleases God. We do this because it helps our children feel secure and it teaches them about order and discipline. We don't do it so we can get a Starbucks at the end of the day (my vice... I get one nearly every day, but I usually don't think of it as a reward... more like liquid energy).

A manicure... a day off... chocolate covered almonds... do we really raise up our children and keep our homes so we can get those things? Do we really want to walk around with the attitude that we are entitled to the self-pampering because we work hard?

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Every Time

There's a weird, providential phenomenon that happens in my life every so often- usually, when I've hit time of spiritual dryness, where I'm ready to throw the book at my faith and walk away. Without fail, every time, the Lord uses a particular family to bring me back to Him. Its really strange, actually.

This morning, while cleaning my stove, I listened to this little talk done by one of the members of this family:

Could this spiritual giant, this amazing woman of God, be bored in church? Does she have times where she struggles in faith, where she feels as though she has failed in her pursuit of Christ?

My friend who is speaking is one of my mentors- her mom is the other- and she doesn't even know it. As she and her family live in Scotland, its not like I ever get the chance to see her... it may be that I never see her again... but I can't wait to embrace her in heaven and say thank you for all the ways you have touched my life and for being open to God's leading in ministry to others.

The Elders are Coming! Crap!

We have our elder visit tonight, so I'm posting my to-do list for the day. I'm lucky that I feel super-motivated today. I might actually get more done then I have in WEEKS!

1. Fly Lady Crisis Cleaning (all steps) - DONE!

2. Clean stove top

3. Clean all appliances

4. Clean all mirrors, computer, and TV screens

5. Dust house

6. Keeping the Home's Emergency Quick Clean process

7. Wipe down all tables,c ounters and surfaces throughout the house

8. Clean all sinks

9. Clean bathtub (which will basically consist of putting all the bath toys out of the bathtub and closing the shower curtain so no one can see how yicky the bathtub is... can't handle this one today)

10. Clean toilet

11. Sweep/Mop Kitchen Floor, bathroom floor

12. Vacuum bedrooms

13. Vacuum living room

14. Put out candles in bathroom

15. Make beds

16. Put away laundry

And if I have time:

1. Clean cabinets in kitchen

2. Declutter top of pantries

3. Go through boxes of crap, 15 minutes at a time (this is all the stuff collected from the Fly Lady Crisis Cleaning so that we can clean the rest of the surfaces)

Saturday, June 13, 2009


I'm trying to think of a way to start this blog post out with a clever intro or a cute story.

It just won't do.

I'm frustrated. I'm frustrated and disgusted.

Against my own better judgment, I visited a blog today where I had no business being if I wanted to keep peace in my own soul. I knew better, but I couldn't stay away. I read most of the comments under a few blog posts and I straight up could not believe what I was reading.

A woman had commented looking for encouragement and advice in a somewhat desperate and ongoing situation. What she received by in return by a number of commentors, certainly not all, was at best, unhelpful and condemning- at worst, hurtful and heavy-handed. She mentioned that had difficulty with some aspects of Vision Forum-style patriarchy and was given "I don't believe what 'they' teach- I just believe the Bible" in return.

How nice for you. Would that it be clear for the rest of us who actually wrestle with these ideas!

I came away from that discussion so sad and quite angry. A common thread I find in blogs that espouse patriocentricity is an attitude of superiority. Because they have the true knowledge of what "God's Way" is, they seem to think they can speak however they wish to people and no one can answer back or question it. There is very little grace extended to anyone who disagrees, even in the slightest respect. Frankly, its snooty. I don't know what else to call it.

I have news for you folks- there are complementarians and egalitarian feminists who believe the Bible to be the sole, infallible rule of faith and practice for the Christian. They hold Scripture in the highest regard. And they disagree with what you think it says.

But that doesn't seem to compute with so many patriocentrists. Instead of actually interacting with ideas, they shut down the conversation with labels and easy answers like "you're just indoctrinated by feminism" or "these 'Christians' say they believe the Bible, but we all know the truth." Can we say "straw man"?

When you start a conversation with something like "I don't believe what 'they' teach, I just believe the Bible," you take away all chances for discussion. You are certainly implying that those who disagree with you disagree with God's Holy Word and that is often not the case.

These blogs exist to supposedly encourage wives and mothers, but they spend so much time (at least in the comments) shooting others down. In actuality, I think they exist to encourage wives and mothers who think like they do. And if you dare disagree, you're labeled as a "Christian".

These are my impressions. I could be dead wrong... but doesn't it behoove these people to take an honest look at they way they come across when people challenge them? Its not the teaching that bothers me as much as the attitude behind it. There's such an attitude of superiority- it reeks through each and every word. And instead of actually considering what the dissenter is saying, these bloggers label or condemn or make new accusations. Its really disheartening.

I'm guilty of this too- not so much the superiority complex, but of not considering that an actual person is writing these comments. A person with a heart and a soul and feelings... May God help me in this area. I know that many anti-patrio blogs are guilty of the same kind of rudeness I see on pro-patrio blogs, but the attitude behind the rudeness seems to be different.

We don't all have a monopoly on the truth. Instead of being an encouragement today, the blog I visited ruined my day because of the owner's treatment of several commentors. Its such a shame. She may have many valuable things to say. She may be the nicest person I'll ever meet, but I'll never have the chance to know that because her attitude put me off so much that I never want to go back. Ever.

My impressions are not always right... my experience with Stacy McDonald has proven that to me... but how am I ever going to be proven wrong when the guns come out blazing every time there's a disagreement?

Remember that old saying "What you are speaks so loudly, I can't hear what you say?" or in the case of blogging "What you SAY speaks so loudly, I can't see who you are"...

Perhaps we should all take that to heart.

Friday, June 12, 2009

My Husband Rocks!!

My husband rocks because he lets me nap. This guy gets up at 4:00 am five days a week and gets home at 5:00 pm from his job. If I've had a particularly rough day and need some time for a nap in the afternoon, he occupies the kids and lets me get some sleep. If I'm up in the night with the kids, he'll get up with them in the morning on the weekends and let me sleep in. Those little pockets of extra sleep make such a big difference in my overall attitude and ability to handle the day's challenges. That extra measure of grace from my husband endears him all the more to me.

Thank you, Mark!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Moving Right Along...

I hope to get back to blogging full force ASAP. Not that anyone reads my blog except Anne... but I do intend to get back to it. We'll see what happens.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


It all started with nasty drainage running from my sinuses and down my throat. No congestion. No nasty feeling. Just drainage and a lot of hocking. Slight sore throat.

And then, yesterday, I started getting hoarse. Still hocking. My right tonsil is freakin' HUGE! No pain though. At this point in the evening, I can barely talk. Not good considering I'm a mom of two active kids under 5.

I bought some Traditional Medicinals Throat Coat Tea. I sure hope it helps because this really sucks!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Recovering Pessimist

So, I "failed" today. I ate some homemade sourdough bread... a few bites of mac and cheese... and some iced coffee. I spent way too much money at Target. I feel terrible. I want to cry about it. I want to wallow in it. Same old Jennifer- can't stick to anything. No discipline. Might as well go back to the old way of living- three coffees a day, only sugar till noon.

I want to give up.


I won't. I'm tired of giving up. I'm tired of being "all or nothing". I'm tired of slipping up and then giving up. How am I ever going to get anywhere? How am I ever going to become the person I want to be- the great mom, supportive wife, the eco-goddess, the healthy, energetic, positive person I struggle so hard to be- if I give up? If I give up, I won't ever have the chance to get better.

The answer is to persevere. The answer is to accept where I am today, the "mistakes" I made, and move on. Keep going.

Remembering my affirmation from yesterday: Perfectionism never served anybody. Do what you can. As long as you are doing you're best, you have nothing to feel bad about. You are not behind! Jump right in!

Did I do my best today? No. Can I change anything I have already done? No. Will feeling bad about it serve anyone? Of course not. In fact, feeling bad about it will no doubt find its way into my relationships with others. I get frustrated, largely with myself and my own failures, and then I take it out on others. I am short with my children. I get paralyzed and fool around instead of getting off my butt and doing something about it.

No more! Seriously! You have to "start on the inside and work your way out"

I really like the way Kris puts it- eat your veggies and shake your as%. Its really very simple. DO IT, for crying out loud! Don't piss and moan when you screw up. Did I "fail" with my food today? Yes. Remedy? Go make a green juice. Did I "fail" in keeping my house picked up today? Yes. Remedy? Set the timer and work 5 minutes in each room until its picked up enough that I can relax. Did I "fail" in mothering my kids? Yes. Remedy? Hug them. Kiss them. Love on them. And apologize.



At a time.

I am not behind! I will jump in where I am at! Perfectionism never served anybody!

And FTR- I swore up and down that I didn't have a gluten sensitivity, but I basically haven't had any since Monday. Well, I felt full and CRAPPY after eating the bread this morning. WTF!! I guess I really do need to give it up. Ah well, no big deal. And the coffee? I've had 1/2 a grande and my fingers won't stop shaking. Haven't had any since Sunday (or Saturday?) and my sensitivity to it has gone way up.

Kris, the cleanse is WORKING!! In spite of all my "cheating"- I am learning things about the way my body responds to food and I love it. Its actually very motivating!!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Potty Mouth

I confess. I have a potty mouth. It gets worse when I don't take my meds... like right now. I want to swear so bad on this blog... but I won't (unless by accident). You don't know how much restraint I've already shown ;-)

Cleansing while Broke

So, I'm broke until the 19th. I really can't go out and buy groceries without charging it until that date.

Holy Frak!

How can I start a cleanse with mostly fresh, raw veggies on Monday when I can't afford to buy lettuce? Well, basically, I'm going to do the best I can. There's an ethnic market close to use that sells Romaine heads 3 for a dollar. Three pounds of apples for a dollar... 5 bunches of parsley for a dollar... and the stuff is okay in quality too. The veggies are better than the fruit, but beggars can't be choosers... literally.

I have enough supplies to make green smoothies for a few days. I won't be able to juice until Wednesday. Kinda makes me wish I'd bought more kale while I was ignorant of our financial situation this morning at Mother's. I did get my flat of wheatgrass so I'm set there. Yay! I've bought liver detox tea and green teas so I can have my hot bevvie in the morning.

How am I going to eat 70% raw on no money?? I really have to make due with what I have and really get the most out of it. There's no throwing away ANYTHING and if I have to live off of celery/lemon juice, so be it. I can't eat pasta, but I can eat up the brown rice, wild rice, quinoa, and millet that's been sitting in my pantry for a while. I have to make everything count.

The bottom line is this: I WILL NOT BE STOPPED! I am determined to make this change in my life. This is it. Do or die! No more messing around.

I've called Kris my guru for the past few years, ever since I first saw CSC on TLC. She's giving us this great gift, this great opportunity to change our lives while she guides us. I won't be put off because I suck at managing money.

Plus, there's always the dreaded CC... AND I can sell my vita mix 3600 now, so that can fund my groceries. I wonder if there's anything else of value I can hock so that I can do this cleanse... and feed my family too ;-)

Any ideas?

Monday, May 4, 2009

Shopping Lists!!

Kris posted the Adventure Cleanse shopping list this morning! I am SO excited. I think I'm finally going to spring for some of the stuff I've always wanted to try, but never have:

Chia and Hemp seeds
Some kind of Green Powder- probably what is sold at TJ's
Hemp Powder

I plan on getting a flat of wheatgrass too. What's the point of having a wheatgrass juicer if you're not going to use it. I'll have to clean out my fridge to fit the flat in... but cleaning out the fridge is never EVER a bad thing. Looks like I'll be cleaning more then my colon.

Speaking of cleaning, I'm going to start another "Spring Cleaning" adventure today.

Speaking of, I'd better do-it-to-it and stop sitting here writing about it...

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Moving Along...

I'm basically convinced that my biggest flaw is a total lack of self-discipline. I have sworn up and down that I will go raw or vegan or do the Master Cleanse or juice with my blender... I go for maybe a day and then BAM! I'm off the wagon and eating the crap. I'm obsessed with food, but that doesn't seem to help me very much. All I've eaten today are some Good N Plenties, Chocolate, toast, and coffee. Not great. I have a fridge full of greens, fruit, KALE (my favorite), fresh salsa... all that great stuff, but I'm sitting here drinking my third cup of coffee, feeling sorry for myself, and trying to get up enough energy to start my day.

And its 2pm.

I have clinical depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder for which I've been in therapy or taking meds for the past five years. I've been off the meds for a week now. Haven't had any major freakouts, so that's good. I didn't make a conscious decision to stop taking them. Mostly I just forget to take them.

Anyway, I have five things to look forward to in the next two weeks. (Here's my attempt to go all positive...)

1. I FINALLY ordered my Blendtec on Wednesday last week. It should arrive by Friday of next week. Woohoo! No excuses now. None.

2. Sometime this week, I'll be done working for good. I can finally concentrate on my home without the divided loyalties.

3. My mom comes home from her visit to Indiana next week. Can't wait to see her!!

4. The ADVENTURE CLEANSE starts in just over a week. Can. Not. Wait.

5. Worldfest 2009!! Can't wait to see Kathy Freston, Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, and Ani Phyo out there while, hopefully, devouring loads of great "adventure cleanse" approved foods.

Oooh, this reminds me. I need to order my Enema bag. Great. Can't wait for that. Will I have the guts to actually do an enema? We'll see.

And speaking of ordering things, I need to order my husband's insulin... so I'm gonna go. Will hopefully be back blogging again real soon.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Its All About Babysteps

I feel like I'm on my way. These days, my life has been all about baby steps- the minute little choices we have to make each and every time a temptation comes our way. Some days, I cave. Most days, however, I am able to remain faithful to the course I've set on.

I've had a crappy day. Nothing went particularly wrong. It was busy. It was boring. And I'm tired. Being bored, stressed, and tired are probably the biggest triggers to Mocha-drinking in my life. Before I'd been at work an hour, I was already thinking about when I could get to Starbucks... and it had to be Starbucks because I actually like their iced coffee (with a pump of Toffee Nut) without milk or cream. Then I was ready to shoot on over to Borders to get an iced caramel latte and a snickerdoodle. Talk about DAIRY!

Amazing, I came back full circle again and asked myself this question: Am I committed to this life? Am I committed to remaining vegan for my health and for the planet. Am. I. Serious?

The short answer (at least for this that I asked myself the question) is yes.

So I started plotting my trip to Starbucks again. Thankfully, listening to a few Rawkin Radio podcasts, I gave up on the idea of coffee and decided to bless myself with a green juice instead.

Wonder of wonders! I feel so much better! My mood has improved (although that may be due to the fact that I get off in 5 minutes). I have more energy. Imagine that!

Baby. Steps. Make conscious decisions instead of eating mindlessly. One day, one choice, one moment at a time.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Back on the Wagon

Tomorrow. Hardcore.

Just made some vegan applesauce muffins. Water is on for the pasta dishes I should be eating this week. I'm also cooking lentils for a hearty stew that will also carry me through the week (fingers crossed). Registering at the university gym tomorrow. Yoga with Zelda on Tuesday. And water... lots and lots of water.

I am very happy to report that during a clandestine trip to Costco yesterday, I was fortunate enough to find Jose's coffee selling all their specialties. I picked up 2lbs each of decaf butternut toffee coffee and regular. Mixed them together. Now I can have MORE! Yay!

DH and I have been doing a lot better lately. Its been rocky, but we're actually talking, COMMUNICATING about it, I'm pleased to say.

Missing Colorado... a lot. Missing the beautify of a river flowing between two mountains... rocky riverbeds, green trees, COLD weather... wildlife everywhere. The colors just look different out there. I'm not a beach person, so living in California is kind of disappointing.

Have to get back to it...

Friday, January 23, 2009

Caffeine Update

No surprise here, but I did NOT make the entire 21 days without caffeine. About seven days into it, I finally came to the conclusion that I didn't need to be totally caffeine-free, but I did need to lose my dependence on 3-4 cups of coffee a day. I needed to lose the idea that I couldn't wake up or read my Bible or make it to my break at work without my mind completely wandering off. And so each and every time I want some caffeine, I make a conscience choice to have it or not to have it. Usually, I choose not to. I try very had to make the choice not to have it if I feel that I actually need it.

Hopefully that makes sense...

I totally want to write more... feeling very reflective as today is my "angel baby's" 5th heavenly birthday. However, DH wants to watch a movie and I've got to try and stay away to watch "Battlestar"...

Monday, January 12, 2009

"I Don't Know Where I Stand"

This song often comes to mind when I think of my old friend. Its ironic that I thought of this song this evening when it is so "appro-po":

"Funny day, looking for laughter and finding it there
Sunny day, braiding wild flowers and leaves in my hair
Picked up a pencil and wrote I love you in my finest hand
Wanted to send it, but I don't know where I stand

Telephone, even the sound of your voice is still new
All alone in California and talking to you
And feeling too foolish and strange to say the words that I had planned
I guess its too early, cause I don't know where I stand

Crickets call, courting their ladies in star-dappled green
Thickets tall, until the morning comes up like a dream
All muted and misty, so drowsy now I'll take what sleep I can
I know that I miss you, but I don't know where I stand
I know that I miss you, but I don't know where I stand"

-Joni Mitchell

This song was the theme for our entire relationship. And it still is! Hilarious!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

More Appreciations

1. Today, I am grateful for Facebook. This amazing site enabled me to bring closer to a very important relationship in my life, one that ended 11 years ago, but has still sort of haunted me. I requested to be this person's Facebook friend and he chose to ignore my request. I can still message, so I sent him this:

Dear S. ,

Well, it seems as though you've chosen to ignore my friend request, although I have no idea why. No worries. Just wanted to catch up after all this time. If I had known that the last time I saw you 11 years ago would be the last time I'd ever see you or talk to you I'd have said something like this: I hope you are happy and blessed. Thank you for the impact you made on me. Our friendship was one of the foundational relationships in young adult life. I still think of you every time I hear a Joni Mitchell song. I so appreciate the unique way that you look at life- the beauty you find in the simplest things or the musicality of someone's voice. You are a gift.

Okay, enough of the cheese, however sincerely meant. Good luck to you, my dear friend.

Its just what I wanted to say. Is that part of my life, that still-open wound, that "what-if", closed? Yes. Is he gone for good from my thoughts? Do you ever forget your first love? No. But you can change the way you think about him- you can look back and smile with fondness instead of wondering "what-if". I'm happy with my life and with my husband. Wouldn't change a thing.

2. Ken Samples- Sunday school teacher extraordinaire.

3. My MIL's Pot Roast. Yes, I know I'm vegan, but Sunday is my cheat day if I do feel like cheating.

4. My daughter's hair is finally getting long enough to put into pigtails.

5. Sundays in general... they are usually good nap days and GREAT days of worship of our Lord.

6. Self-control. I don't have much of it, but somehow I did manage to not pick a fight with anyone today (and I so wanted to).

7. Mark's grandpa and his constant, cheerful demeanor.

8. My son prays for our meals every night. And he loves doing it.

9. Books. I think I put this in my last appreciation, but its good to say it again.

10. Sleep. I plan on getting a lot of it tonight.

UPDATE: Five minutes after I hit "send" on that email, I got a response. I just wanted to make sure that I hadn't been forgotten. A part of me, rightly or wrongly, still seems to need validation from this relationship that has been totally over for 11 years now. Got a little teary when I read this:

I've had a couple of experiences this week in berlin that made me think of you. i'm lucky that you look back on our experiences together so positively. I sometimes wonder, judging my teenage self.

I confess, I got a little teary. I was a teenager all over again.

Back to the real world, where I live and LOVE and am present, committed, and persevering.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Daily Appreciation

1. A constant place to live. Can't even imagine being homeless, let alone homeless with my husband and children.

2. Family nearby. They are all a tremendous blessing- our backbone.

3. My husband- I am his biggest fan. What an amazing man. Hard worker, faithful lover, constant friend.

4. My children- What joys! So often, I feel like a plain crappy parent. And then Alex runs to get Sophia her own cup of water because she's constantly asking me for a sip out of mine. No one asked him, but out of his own tender heart, he helped her.

5. Good health- more about that coming up.

6. A church home. I can't imagine handling the stress of life without this foundation.

7. The misty cool air of this morning. Makes winter hang on a little longer.

8. The fact that I can listen to music while I work. I'd die of boredom otherwise. Not that my job is boring... but my mind tends to wander and music, ironically, helps me focus.

9. Books. I love books. I love the smell of books, what's in books, buying books, having long lists of books to read. Why I EVER watch TV is beyond me.

10. Battlestar Galactica. Lame appreciation I know, but its there nonetheless. I love having things to look forward too. BSG's final 10 episodes start airing a week from today. I still think Gaeta is the final Cylon, but who the heck knows. Mark thinks its Hera. I love how this brings us together LOL!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

A Welcomed Discovery

Today is Day 7 of my caffeine-free, vegan journey and Day 1 of a new, no-sugar diet as well. I tried a little experiment this morning. I consciously chose to have a cup of my "Half-Caff" Trader Joe's coffee, just to test its effects. I didn't feel like a slave to the caffeine. I just wanted a cup or real coffee and chose to have one.

An hour after first consumption, my stomach was on fire! I felt like I'd had two or three cups of full-caff. An hour and a half later, I was high as a kite. My eyes were bugging out of my head. I talked up a storm and couldn't stop. I was wide awake and cheerful. Three hours later, I crashed and am fatigued yet again.

All that from under 1 cup of half-caff coffee.

I don't think this will be a difficult journey anymore, at least not where coffee is concerned. Tea is a bit tougher because the caffeine content is half that of coffee and its not as acidic so you don't feel the effects in your gut like you do with coffee. I love a good cup of Irish Breakfast with a teeny bit of sugar and a splash of milk, neither of which I can have right now. So I'm still stuck with no-s0-great tea. I know there's good stuff out there... I just have to find it.

This discovery about coffee is very welcomed. I don't need it- physically, psychologically... emotionally, I'm not sure, but I'll get over it. Coffee is such a social drink and we are big drinkers in my family. Not sure how I can get through a holiday without my Jose's vanilla with a splash of cream... but I'll figure it out.

Have to get back to work. More later.

Thursday, January 1, 2009


Don't feel like blogging today, even though today was "Day 1" of my cleanse. I'm a completely sick and even though I don't have a fever, I feel worse than I have in quite a long time. This is my second cold in the last month and it bites! I had the day off from work today and I took one 3 hr nap and one 1.5 hr nap. Totally neglected my kids due mostly to the fact that my being sick has put me in a completely bad mood. My hearing seems to be totally magnified. Everything seems unbelievably loud!

I successfully abstained from caffeine and dairy today. Not going to stay away from the gluten. That's just too much at this point. However, I did have a teeny bit of sugar as I snacked on a little trail mix while dropping off the rent at my landlord's home. Craving sugar. Craving Irish Breakfast tea with milk and a little sugar. Two headaches today. Need more sleep.

Have fallen in love with the "John Adams" miniseries. Not surprising. I started reading the book in force last night after watching the first two eps. Excellent production. Incredible acting. Leaves me wanting more, which is always a good sign.

Okay, I'm going to bed. I do have to work tomorrow, so I can't stay up late tonight... not that I want to...