Friday, December 19, 2014

Fitness Friday: Whole 30 on a Friday Night

image credit: Wikipedia
Whoops.  Well, today was not my day.  I had a bad reaction to a medicine the doctor put me on and that meant spending most of the day in bed!

So it is now Friday night, and I did not forget, I am just only starting to feel human enough again to type.  Needless to say, I will not be taking more of that medicine!

So, if you follow me on Instagram, you might have noticed that I started the Whole 30.  I would love to tell you that it was great and I was an awesome success, but guess what?  I got sick.  SICK, SICK, SICK.  I could not figure it out.  I mean, that was why I stopped drinking coffee!  I had eliminated everything: sugar, gluten, dairy, and coffee.  And I was getting sicker by the minute.

I was laying in bed (gee, I sound like that is all I do) when it struck me.  When I started eliminating all those things I was replacing them with nuts.  And when I cut dairy I sent myself over the edge.  Almond milk, Paleo granola (which, let's face it, is basically chopped up nuts), cashews, almond butter....

The next morning I, in a very unladylike voice, said, "Screw it!  I am getting me a cup of a jo with half and half."  I did.  And I ate cheese.  I ate beautiful Tillamock cheddar and know what?  I felt better.  I didn't get sick all day.  And three days later, no stomach aches, no pains, no issues.

Stupid nuts.

So I am possibly the only person in the world who did not feel better doing the Whole 30.  And the idea of actually, also, cutting nuts made me think I might explode.

So there you have it.  One week later and I am back on the coffee and swimming in dairy.  And, know what?  I feel better! 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

{P,H,F,R} Trimming the Tree 2014

Once again, you can marvel at my poor photography skills.  I blame my cave of a living room.  So be prepared for blurry and oddly colored pictures.


We had to but new lights this year because all of our others were half out.  Half, seriosuly!  So we bought these LED ones at Target and now our living room is tie dyed, as you can see above.  I am not sure it is pretty, but we are getting used to it.


Someone insited on helping daddy put the angel on the tree.


Posy, obviously, didn't know what to think of all of this.

 There was a serious argument about whether this cat should go on the tree.  I think it is one of our ugliest ornaments and deserves a place of honor.  I won.

For more {P,H,F,R} fun head over to Like Mother, Like Daughter.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Santa Lucia 2014

We are big fans of Saint Lucy around here and look forward to this feast every year.  This last Saturday the kid's were able to go to a huge Advent retreat at church, and our poor Buttercup was in tears when I picked her up because she thought we weren't going to celebrate Saint Lucy Day!

Well, she was wrong.  I had everything laid out for them when they got home and everyone was super excited!

Despite my whole30ish existence these days, I made the kids the traditional Saint Lucy Braided  Bread with icing and cranberries.  They love this and it wasn't too bad as far as temptation goes until I cut it.  That was when I kept thinking... one bite, one bite... but I didn't!  I survived!  I did walk away with a nasty burn on my arm though.  The pan tipped when I took it out of the oven and hit my arm.  I have a lovely 4 inch burn in the shape of the corner of a pan on my forearm.

 It was such a strange day!  Rose and Lily were working, Daisy went to help with the Advent Retreat, and Rogue, Buttercup, and Bear all got to go.  Tony was working.  So it was me with the three littlest.  It was a challenge at times, as you can see above Sweet Pea LOVES Posy A LOT.  It was very weird though, as it occurred to me at one point that this would be what life would be like if all my kids were in school.  It was a bit surreal since it has been over a decade since that was the case, and I have a lot more kids now!

So back to Saint Lucy, we are not morning people anyway, so our evening celebration was nothing new.  But boy, I had a hard time with photos!  I need to work on my skills.  I tried to get some pictures by the tree and every which place but they were all either blurry or made us look like we were on the verge of zombiehood.

But I was able to get a few:

Buttercup was very happy, as you can see in the smiles up there.  I think she looks forward to this as much as any birthday.  And this year I made a crown.  There were no candles in the wreath, but after making paper crowns every year for as long as I can recall, I thought it was time to make something a bit more permanent!  I will see about writing up the pattern later. It was supper easy and I was able to do it really quick while the baby and Tiger took a nap.

After Buttercup passed out the slices of bread, I read to them from Lucia, Saint of Light and they colored the pictures I drew of Saint Lucy years ago.

It was such a simple celebration that brought so much love and joy to everyone.  It really struck me how important it is to celebrate these namedays and how it doesn't have to be anything big or overwhelming.  Just something special and simple was enough to really bring each of them memories that will last a lifetime!

For more Saint Lucy celebrations check out Audrey Eclectic!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Fitness Friday: Quitting Coffee

So I was sitting here thinking maybe I would watch some TV and then I reliazed, no that would be too lazy.  Oh I will write a blog post, because that will at least be a workout for my fingers, right?

Well, it isn't like I have much brain power right now anyway.  I quit coffee on... oh I don't know when.  That is how bad this is.  Basically a couple of days.  You can look on Twitter or Facebook to find my quip of the day regarding what it is like to quit coffee when you have 9 kids, one of which is a newborn.

Basically coffee was upsetting my stomach.  I have had this issue in the past.  In fact, before Buttercup was born I didn't drink coffee because it made me so sick.  After she was born however, I craved it so bad I thought I would die.  Literally.  Ok, not literally, but I wanted some really, really bad.  And it didn't make me sick, so I kept drinking and drinking.

I started drinking coffee at a very young age.  I can recall making it for my mother every morning before I headed off to middle school, so maybe 6th grade?  Who knows, if I didn't drink coffee at such an age I could be like 6'3" and then my current weight would be perfect.  But after a few years it started to make me really really sick.  So I stopped, for a decade!  And now, now I am a dirty filthy addict, sitting outside Starbucks begging for a sniff of some stranger's mocha.  It is a sick, sad thing.  Don't tell the kids.

To be totally honest, I didn't want to do the Whole30 because I would have to give up the cream in my coffee.  Talk about issues.  I thought about doing the program and cheating by just having cream in my coffee.  But then I felt like a hypocrite.  So I just decided not to do the Whole30 and enjoy my coffee. 

I have had some many issues since my bout with food poisoning, that I knew I had to do something like the Whole30 to just give my body a break.  So as of today I started the Whole30 and not a touch of coffee, dairy, or wheat have passed my lips.  The wheat I am used to.  It is going to the fridge and reminding myself not to grab that thing of string cheese, that has been hard.

But the worst by far is coffee.  I swear my withdrawal symptoms have been totally freaky.  I have caught myself saying things backwards.  Seriously.  I have been drinking green tea, water, and shooting ibuprofen just to make it through the day.  And even though everyone keeps looking at me like I am on the verge of death and sincerely concerned for my well-being with constant questions of, "Are you ok?  No seriously, are you OK?"  There was a moment today (I think day 3?) that I felt good.  No stomach ache and my mind was clear.

Or maybe that was a dream...

So if you love to listen to me complain and speak nonsense, be sure to follow me on Facebook or Twitter as I give up dairy and coffee. 

Who knows maybe I will feel well enough to actually move next week?

Yeah, right.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

{p,h,f,r} December 11, 2014

Things have been totally hectic around here.  We are down to one car that can go any distance and it only seats seven people.  So when there are 11 of us, that proves a challenge!  Especially when three of those eleven people work and one goes to school outside the home.  Plus piano lessons, recitals, and Daisy's school once a week 20 minutes away, you can imagine.

Last Sunday, between mass and recitals, we went up to the local u-cut place and got a Christmas tree.  We had been invited to go up the woods, which we desperately wanted to do, but we just couldn't pull it off.  So this was the next best thing.

We go to the same lot almost ever year, Bob's U-Cut, despite the fact the lady there flirts with Tony every year.  Apparently she is very fond of his eyes.  It is run by a couple close to their eighties!  They are amazing. 




Tony picked out a tree, but we weren't too keen on that one.

We soon found out tree and Rogue cut it down all by himself.  When I pointed out to him that there were grown men out there cutting down their trees with chainsaws there was an immediate and overflowing abundance of manly pride.

Which continued all the way to the car where he climbed on top of the van and struck a victory pose.  And he wasn't the only one being silly, of course...


And in case you were wondering, Buttercup and Rogue also carried the tried for a quarter of a mile to the car!  no Sweet Pea didn't help!

And I can't post without one photo of Posy!

For more {P,H,F,R} head over to Like Mother, Like Daughter.  God bless and have a lovely Advent!  2 weeks till Christmas!

"For unto us a child is born." ~Isaiah 9:6

Saturday, December 6, 2014

On the Feast of Saint Nicholas

We never really celebrated Saint Nicholas Day before 2007.  I think I made buns the year before that, trying to make it special.  But in 2007 everything changed.  That was the year I lost our baby, our very own St. Nicholas.

Ever since I have tried to make it special with shoes by the fireplace and stories about the St. Nick the whole world knows.  Some years have been more impressive than others, of course, but always there in our hearts is the memory of the baby that I never got to hold, except in my dreams.

Nicholas would be 7 this Christmas.  It is hard to believe it has been that long.  I feel sometimes that when you loose a baby, they are always your baby.

I am praying today, that we all have a blessed feast in honor of the patron saint of children and all the little children named in his honor, both here on earth and those in heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
Matthew 5:4

Friday, December 5, 2014

Fitness Friday: What are You Dieting For?

This is probably the last time I went to the gym!
I was reading my incredible niece's blog Moving Mountains Motivation the other day and she asked this question: What are you "dieting" for?  Or do you want a healthier lifestyle?

This was timely for me because I was contemplating the Whole30.  I have been contemplating it for a good while now, even when I was still pregnant.  It really got me thinking, here now, about what I need to do to change the way I have been eating.

The thing is I knew what I had to do to loose weight but, boy, I wasn't doing it.  You see the minute I give in a little on things like sugar and bread I go all in.  I mean ALL IN.  I shocked myself when I realized we went through a 25 pound bag on flour in less than 2 weeks.

Gee, and I wonder why I was feeling so lethargic and icky.

I started thinking, well, I lost weight eating dairy last time, so I don't have to do that.  And I lost weight doing this and that...

And then it occurred to me this isn't about loosing weight.  If I do anything similar to the Whole30, because let's face it, I am not giving up coffee and coffee without cream is coffee lacking all joy and happiness and therefore utterly pointless... oh wait where was I?  Oh yeah, if I do anything similar to the Whole30 it is not going to be as a diet.  It can't be!  It has to be simply a tool i use to get me back on track.  To get me thinking about and making healthier choices.

And that is the bottom line.

And you might be wondering about exercise.  Yes, I need to get back up and moving.  I have been a bit nervous about doing anything big until I can get to the chiropractor.  Since I had back labor with Posy this is a big deal.  After Sweet Pea I ended up in bed for over a month because of a swollen disc and I don't want that to happen again... ever again.  Having a swollen disc is right up there on my list of things to never do again, like getting food poisoning when 40 weeks pregnant.

I won't be able to get to the chiropractor until January because that is when my insurance changes, so I am trying to think slow.  I want to get out walking, but I don;t want to do it alone, of course.  Oh was that an excuse.  Curses! I am doing something that my niece inspired me to do! 

It is Plankmas y'all!    So, it is never too late to join us in our endeavors to be the ultimate planksters.

Hopefully next week, I will update you with some fitness goals!  Until then, are you doing anything to keep healthy this season?  Any new great exercise I should try?  Share in the comments!

Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.
1 Corinthians 9:26-27