Friday, February 25, 2011

3 in 30- Goals for March

I cannot believe that February is almost over! It is a shorter month, but it felt super short for some reason. I noticed over at AP Freewriting that it's now time to make some new goals. I opted out last month, as I blogged about a few weeks ago, but I'm back this month!

This past month has been more orderly for me, even though I didn't actually set any real goals. For this past week or so, I've been sticking with my daily routines, and that has been really helpful. I'm not as prompt about doing things as I would like, but for the most part, they get done. So, I feel ready to aim a little higher!

Here are my goals:

  1. I want to start eating three meals per day with the family, because it seems like we just kind of eat on our own all the time. My son wakes up, he asks for food when he's hungry, then my daughter gets up...I fix her something else to eat whenever she seems hungry, and I eat sometime after that usually. We don't usually have a regular "lunch time" per se. Dinner time is not that big of an issue, but I do want all of us to sit at the table together each night. I wanted to create more structure in our meal times, but also cultivate the habit of spending meaningful time together. Also, I won't feel like I'm constantly in the kitchen if we have distinct meal times. I'm sure I'll discover other benefits to doing this, but even if I don't, I think I will experience more order in my day. I really need that!
  2. Next, I would like to create the habit of spending 15 minutes per day de-cluttering/tidying up. I do this from time to time, and I'm always amazed at what a difference it makes. I feel like creating this habit will help make it easier to maintain order (there's that word again!) around the house. I don't like to feel overwhelmed when I look around. 
  3. Third, I want to plan a date night each week with my husband that is either free or low-cost. The expense issue is not quite as important as the intentional time with my husband. We used to be pretty good about making it a point to spend time together alone, but you know how it just get caught up in doing other stuff, and it gets pushed aside. 
Anyway, that's what I'm up to! What are your goals? Are you taking part in the 3 in 30 Challenge?

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Health Improvements

At the beginning of this year, my family and I started on The Maker's Diet. We stuck with it for about two weeks. (!) It's a forty-day program, by the way. I actually opted to go off of it because of my daughter's reaction to it. She's breastfed and since she was about six weeks old, she has shown allergic reactions to various foods I was eating. I blogged about that "ordeal" here (in case you wanna read).

Her recent reaction wasn't really severe or anything, but the diet is quite heavy on dairy and eggs, and those are two of the foods I had eliminated previously. She started getting itchy and so every time I would change her, I would see new scratch marks on her. (That only started since I reintroduced dairy and eggs). The reactions used to be a lot worse, so she has improved, thankfully.

Anyway, since going off of that diet, and going back on grains, I've noticed that I don't feel as good as I did on The Maker's Diet. I've also been consuming more sugar than I was. I'll spare you the details of how I feel when I eat a lot of grains, but I'll just say I feel much better when I don't have them (I think I look much better when I don't eat them as well).

One thing I have made some progress on is giving up caffeine! I'm so excited that I have done so. It really is freeing. I don't need it. I don't even really want it. I like a hot beverage in the morning, so I've switched to herbal tea with honey. I used to drink a lot of green tea, which has many health benefits, but I think for me, the bigger health benefit is not having caffeine.

I've been reading a lot about adrenal health, as well as gut health (more about those issues here), and I just came to the conclusion that caffeine was something that needed to go. I really did try to hang on to it for a while, but I just felt awful every time I would drink coffee or whatever. It was just time. I think it's pretty safe to say that I had been addicted to caffeine in some form or another since I was a teenager. (Like 16 years or so for anyone keeping track!) In the form of sodas, coffee, tea and chocolate. (I haven't totally given up chocolate...but that may be next!)

I guess you could just say that I'm "tired" of not feeling my best. I think once you know that you can attain to a higher level of physical function, giving up unnecessary things is not so difficult. I will say that is harder, and less convenient for sure...but it's kind of like the story of Daniel. He was surrounded by a culture that didn't adhere to the same diet that he had, but he felt way better than everyone else. He was physically healthier. That's what I'm aiming for. Not so I can say I'm healthier than the general population or anything, but I would like to show people that vibrant health is not unattainable.

I've also been reading a couple books that have totally changed how I look at food. In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan has been an awesome read. I also read part of Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. (Only part of it, because it was due back at the library before I could finish it, and someone had placed a hold on it so I couldn't renew it. I'll have to purchase it, or check it out again at a later time.) Anyway, those books have really influenced me to change not only how I eat, but where we get out food from. I highly recommend them if you're looking to improve your health.

Anywho, back to The Maker's Diet. I may return to that at a later time, but for now, I will definitely cut back on grains, and dairy. Dairy is pretty easy to avoid and still eat a really good variety of other food. I may look into getting raw dairy, as I've heard that people who are allergic usually don't have issues with raw dairy. It's something worth pursuing, anyway.

Have you made any recent health improvements? Have you been "on the fence" about anything health-related lately? Let me know in the comments!

Monday, February 14, 2011

TV at Wendy's? Yuck!

These days we don't do very much fast food. But my son had been asking for French fries, like...all day, so I decided I would surprise him with an outing to our local Wendy's for some natural cut, sea-salted fries. Plus I felt like taking a break from my recent peeling, slicing and frying routine that I started in order to avoid, you guessed it: fast food French fries.

On the way in, I spotted a booth in the corner with a conveniently located high chair for the baby. So, after we received our order (two large fries and an ice water, in case you were wondering), we made our way over to said corner booth. What I didn't see at first was the flat screen television overhead. My son sat facing it at first, and then when I realized it was there and tuned into Nick (it was showing some teen-sitcom/drama or something...according to their line-up on their website, it may have been a show called Big Time Rush?), I made him move to my side of the booth.
I purposely came into the restaurant to spend some time hanging out with the children in the non-home setting (nothing wrong with being at home, just that we're there all. day. long usually). That, and my daughter was getting really fussy with being in the van (I don't get how this happened, she used to love riding in the's like she has switched over to "I now hate riding in vehicles" mode...which is the opposite of her brother who used to hate riding in the car but now enjoys it.) 

Anyway, so we sat munching on fries, and he kept glancing at the TV, which was mildly annoying.  But the stuff that was on it (mind you I could only hear it as I was facing away) was so ridiculously inappropriate. I just couldn't believe the stuff they promote to young children...and I know it's not the teenagers that are actually watching that stuff either. It's the tweens and probably younger that are being saturated with these grown up (at least in my opinion) themes. (It was all a lot of drama about who likes who and who wants to date so-and-so. And don't get me started on the commercials! I thought people paid for cable to get rid of the commercials, but I digress).

I have no idea why there was a television at Wendy's. And why it was tuned to Nick? No idea. The only people sitting on that side of the restaurant (besides us) were seniors. I may send an email to their corporate office stating my dissatisfaction. Not that we frequent Wendy's or anything. But I can't imagine that other people want to leave their homes and come to Wendy's to watch...silly teen drama.  Anyway, what are they saying? That in addition to eating fast food, we need to watch more television?

What do you think? Any thoughts on watching television at fast food restaurants? What about children's  programming on cable networks?

Monday, February 7, 2011

No Goals This Month

Well, I didn't link up this month with the 3 in 30 Challenge for February. I kind of slacked off on my goals last month (well, two out of three anyway). I did, however, maintain the habit of having a Bible study/prayer time before everything else. That has been amazing! I'm going through a read the Bible thru in a year plan, and it's pretty fun. Every day you read a different part of the Bible. Like Sundays, you read the Epistles, Mondays you read Historical books, another day you read Psalms, and so forth. I've only missed a couple days. I really like this plan, because I don't get stuck in the book of Numbers for a month straight and lose interest entirely. (Ha ha!)

Anyway, back to my lack of goals. I really enjoyed participating in the 3 in 30 challenge, and I like the accountability, and encouraging others to reach their goals, but I sort of kept forgetting my goals! Like the water drinking and bedroom organizing. I seriously just forgot that I had made those goals. Anyway, I'm going to try to regroup during February, hopefully get stuff around the house in a better state of organization (in general), try to get my routines worked out (I still haven't really "settled in" from the move), then, come back for March with renewed focus. Don't miss me too bad, okay? :D

What goals are you working on for this month? Comment so I can come visit you!