Saturday, January 1, 2011

The New Year

I find New Year wishes interesting. So many people find this a time to bash the year that has past and put out expectations on the year coming in with great hope. "This year is gonna be GOOD" or "Lots of positive things getting better" but I don't want to buy in. I am not being skeptical I am being positively pragmatic. Sure, I had some hard time last year and if MY plan had been utilized then those hard times would NOT have happened BUT, what I have learned or what I have been forced to acknowledge in myself from going through those hard times has been invaluable. Life is not meant to be without pain and suffering. It is how we use it that moves us forward. If we deny it, hang onto it or bash it with anger then it toxifies our present and darkens our future. I say blessings to you 2010. I still pray for more ease and flow and Grace with gratitude and I hope that I will have the wisdom to find the Grace and joy in 2011 and keep my life moving forward in humility and gratitude. I still have my hopes and "plans" and I think that I know what's best for me and my kids and I am open to the Universes interpretation of the highest good of all.

In the raw food arena: In listening to these wonderful podcasts on raw I am getting some great perspective on raw food and am enjoying eating raw when I feel like it and enjoying cooked food when I feel like it. In doing so I have not melted my inner self and am experiencing my body in it's ever transitioning state. I really really love raw food. I acknowledge that so honestly. I also enjoy the convenience of cooked food right now but only once in awhile. I am eating what I hunger for. Yesterday I ate almost all raw (except for my salad dressing and croutons) until I got home and enjoyed some popcorn with my kids and a natural soda to celebrate the new year. It was a great day, I was not obsessed about food, I wasn't hungry and we enjoyed not stressing over who wants or HAS to eat what. The kids had roast for dinner but I wasn't hungry because of my big delicious salad for lunch and some yummy cheesy kale on my trip home from work. (Mmmmmm, cheesy kale)

I have also noticed that taking the dogma off of the raw food but just enjoying the moment is lightening my spirits a bit. I am beginning to engage in my pilates again. I am pushing past my ankle pain and just enjoyinhg moving my body. I am hoping that 2011 will be a year that I can just enjoy more flow of ease and Grace. Less dogma, less drama, healthier kids and more balance. I am grateful for all the UPS and all the DOWNS. What an adventure!

Monday, December 20, 2010

New perspective-new tools

So with the assistance of my new iPad I have found all of these podcasts on raw and live food. WAY fun to hear all the perspectives. I had learned about raw food through limited sources and held myself to a dogmatic standard based on some od those limited sources. How fun to get other perspectives. One of the podcasts was about getting real about raw. It talked about all the dogma around raw food when in actuality it is just a different fun technology for living. Raw food is just a tool not a religion. It's not wrong or right and very few are 100% raw all the time. Most go in and out and experiment and play. It talked about it being fun. Yup, that is what I needed. I find rawkin so much fun and so exciting. I love to share the yummy discoveries and how it makes me feel. I am excited to separate out this sort of self imposed dogma I had thinking I had to live up to some standard. Imagine me a perfectionist (those who know me know how sarcastic that is because I am my own worst critic). What would it be like to just have fun?! I'm so excited to have sprouting almonds in my kitchen again. (I love those). I am so excited to have flax crackers in the dehydrator again thinking of the variety of yummy foods I get to top them with. I am so sick of the inflammation in my body and the fatigue and groggy fog. I am so looking forward to the fun of rawkin. Glad I found more resources to affirm my lighter spirit in this journey. Found a recipe for chocolate bomb too-way cool!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Good News Bad News

Well, it's been awhile. I have my reasons I swear. On the timeline, some horrible things happened that I won't disclose but suffice it to say I have experienced the hardest year of my entire life. On top of my personal challenges I found out that my children are horribly allergic to nuts of almost all kinds. Apparently going raw with my kiddos was like poison and making all of their health issues worse. We stopped raw kin and sought extensive medical care. In that time through battling depression and stress I tried the HCG diet to battle the weight I was gaining. I have to say the diet is somewhat successful except that it made me extremely loathing of food and paranoid about the number on the scale. I lost for awhile but eventually the depression and stress won the pounds right back on. Now that my children have been properly diagnosed and are on the path to doing better I am beginning to come to terms with my own needs.

So, my biggest problem seems to be that I put my own needs last. I know it is a common problem with Mom's around the world. I guess the gift in my children's issues are that they are pretty extreme and I can't make it better by food or natural means at the moment. So it singles me out in a way. I stand alone. They have to eat specific foods that I do not like so it leaves me on the sidelines. I have tried eating cheap, raman noodles, potatoes, etc but it makes me feel horrible. I tried frozen meals to save on time but they make me feel groggy. I tried eating on the fly in a sort of Kerouac way of whatever comes to me I will eat but it ended up being junk. Yesterday I sat here feeling uncomfortable in my body. I don't hate my body, I bless its journey and how it works so hard to take care of me, but I feel awful. I can feel the food in me like rocks and mud. every time I eat it weighs me down. A bagel for breakfast makes me feel cloudy headed. I try different forms of protein and they all make me feel gross and heavy, they don't digest well, they slow me down. I keep hoping to find a food or a vitamin that actually gives me energy. I become desperate for energy turning to caffeine and sugar and anything that perks me up even if for just a short time. Then it dawns on me as I sit in my rotting gut, when I ate raw I felt good and I had energy. I may not have had excess energy but the food I ate did not sit in me like an anchor.

So I have decided to venture back out on my own into raw food. I'm gonna do it just for me. Imagine that, selfishly making myself feel better. I'm gonna take time to just take care of myself and I can't bring my kids into it. I can't delude myself with saying it is for them and using them to keep me on track. I have to commit to doing something that makes me feel good. I have started reading my raw food books again. I am getting excited to feel better with every bite. I know there will be ups and downs but the shift of working to just feel better is all new for me. I am good at self sabotage and I am easily swayed by the pressure of the SAD diet as it is hammered into our culture. I don't know how this will go but I am stepping back out onto a new edge, a new path hoping to feel better. I am hoping to find energy. I am hoping to stop sinking. I am hoping that as my kids grow up and their needs change, I learn to care for myself. I will let this blog know how it goes.

Monday, March 8, 2010


I feel like my life has kicked into a higher gear but I don't think a whole lot has changed. I know that there is a bit more to juggle with doctors appointment with my kids, which means insurance, authorizations, phone calls, record keeping and gathering and so on. On top of the added "specialists" that both kids are seeing for their different challenges right now, it is the unhappy time for my son's "tri-annual" IEP. This means hours of assessments by the school district, observations, meeting before meetings then the BIG meeting in May. Add all of this into an already really busy life and trying to keep in balance with it all. My business is picking back up because of the time of year and I feel like there are days I can't really catch my breath. I just try to keep moving so I don't sink.

I love eating raw food, my BODY loves eating raw food and my whole family does better eating raw food. This fact being said, raw food takes time to prepare in order to keep it interesting, diverse and balanced. Where in the peep am I supposed to find time for this. My poor kids are getting really used to salads for dinner which isn't a horrible thing and they have fun mixing it up and adding different things.Man, I'll tell you that I reach for convenience wherever I can and sometimes it just ain't rawkin foods. I feel like I am going non stop seven days a week from 5:15am until around 10pm and then I am wiped. I wish there were a raw food drive through. I had heard that Chipotle was a decent place to get good salads and such but now it is my understanding that they have been bought by McDonalds and I do NOT want to support McD's. (yes, I will support the Ronald McDonald Houses but not McD's as a corporation).

I feel so torn and I wish doing what my body loved was easier. I wish I had a personal assistant and a housekeeper. Any suggestions on convenient healthy and fast stuff would be great. We do drop into Whole Foods for a salad on the go or some cheesy kale for car rides.

Monday, February 15, 2010

serious talks about food

Starting out on the lighter notes, the quiche is delicious if you let it dehydrate-which was not in the instructions-and sit for a day. Yesterday, the consistency of the filling left something to be desired although the taste was ok. Today I re-heated in the dehydrator and the filling really did taste almost cheesy. I have to say that one quiche is SO filling. ugh. Next time I would add more spinach. The rawkin fudge is a nice treat and one piece will do ya for awhile. I made more apple cinamon cookies and the cinamon raisin balls...both are a big hit. My son whipped up a nori roll for his lunch today and my daughter made a sandwich out of flax crackers and almond butter. Everyone is quite happy.

As a family, we had a discussion at dinner last night that went on and off until bed. My daughter started it by saying she just wanted to eat the sweet treats of raw food and didn't really like the "entree" parts. We talked about the benefit of the yummy sweet treats, mostly offering protein and some offering fruits but I posed the question: where are the vegetables. Her face went blank as she tried to make dates a vegetable with no success. We talked about all of our favorite sweet treats and couldn't find a single vegetable in one. I talked to my kids about their choices and how they need to find balance. There need to be fresh vegetables and even fresh fruits. While the dehydrated yummy stuff is good and all, it doesn't offer quite the same as a cut up apple or a fresh orange.

My son asked me if most kids were taught to think like this because when he is in school and friends see his lunch or hear him talking about delicious meals they get all grossed out or insulting. I did not know exactly how to answer him. Sometimes I question my own parenting for teaching my kids the way I do. Should they know SO much. Maybe I should just boss them around, prepare their food and lunches and teach them not to question. Maybe I am making life harder for them by teaching them to question so much of their world. I know that some times I would love to be ignorant. In the realm of food alone, I would really love to eat something delicious and processed and loaded with bad things and not know it and believe it is really good for me because it says "vitamin fortified".

Later, my son came to me and asked why he misses processed food SO much. He admitted to all these time where he would sneak food and how he just couldn't stop eating it and he never felt full. I did not shame him at all but instead just asked him to think about that. How much control that processed food had over him. His father got up to almost 400lbs before he had surgery, his father's parents and brother all had to have stomach surgery and some have even gained back ALL the weight they had lost from the surgeries. Unfortunately, he needs to be aware of this, I think. He was a healthy eater for the longest time until we tried a medication for his autism and ocd stuff. The medication helped him so much but seemed to trigger something in him that has never been reversed. He ballooned up and became obsessed with food, only bread and sugary foods.

I want him to grow up healthy and aware without shame or even fear of food. It is such a fine line to walk. Leading by example is one of the best things I can do and I know I struggle with my weight. I always have struggled but I can find a stopping place. My ex husband once pulled 13 bagels out of the freezer and while toasting some ate the rest-all 13 in one sitting. I am not like that. I do eat when I feel overwhelmed or lonely as admitted in prior postings. I am working on finding alternatives to this behavior. I think it is the right thing to do to educate my kids, give them information and help guide their choices but not make them ALL. As they grow older I am supposed to make less and less, let them try their wings while still under the security of my care.

As babies and toddlers, I made all their choices. As young children I made most of their choices or limited the options. As they grow older, they go to friend's houses, they go out with friends and are accountable for themselves. They need to learn to make choices and understand the consequences. If you go to a friend's house and they offer donuts for breakfast, this could cause a consequence of sugar rush and sugar crash. In a child with autism, this is rough and more extreme. In a child with immunity challenges, this has almost always lead to cold sores breaking out. How far did that donut carry you and what are the ramifications beyond the immediate. I try to get them to notice what their choices mean.

Leading by example, I can go get a pizza and drink some soda and be quite happy-temporarily. The next day I feel gross, sluggish and out of sorts. For days I jones for similar jolts of wheat, cheese and sugar. The urges are intense at times and it is hard to get my head clear. I talk to my kids about how I feel and what I go through in order to help them feel less crazy about their own cravings. I can eat that stuff but I have to be willing to face the consequences. I think it's the right thing to do for me and my kids. I also talk about when I am raw and feeling good and when my vision seems clearer and my head seems clearer. I talk about how my body starts to crave what it really needs instead of tastes of processed junk. I talk about my better energy and easier days as well as how much clearer my sleepiness comes at the end of the day signaling to me when it is time to find a stopping point.

It is not easy being a parent. I think we always question what we do, say, teach, etc. I have many who criticize the way I do and some who compliment my process but the truth is, nobody knows how to do it right. I realized LONG ago that no matter how I parented, my kids were going to require therapy. If they never watch t.v. then they would require therapy about how mean I was for culturally stifling them. If I let them watch ALL the t.v. they wanted then they'd go to therapy and talk about how I let them zone out and disconnect. It is all shades of gray. I have NO idea what I am doing but I am doing the best that I can. I think that when it isn't easy and mind numbing it probably is in the right direction but when it feels like it is a constant battle then I might have over shot. Somewhere in the middle? Somewhere in their intelligence, listening to them as much as I want them to listen to me. Hoping for the best turnout possible.

So we have agreed that we will EACH chose a recipe for the beginning of the week that involves vegetables and again for the second half of the week. We have lots of books and on line resources so we can look and plan. They have to HELP prepare their choice and be willing to experiment. The only way we are going to branch out is to try new recipes. We also have to give the recipes more then one try...don't throw it out immediately. Like the quiche, for example, it took a day or two of re-trying to find how much I like it after it set up a while. The sweet treats are easy to like. We also have to find new ways to enjoy the fresh fruits and vegetables. On with the adventure.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Rawkin Fudge

Well, I finally got around to making the quiche filling. It really is pretty good as a combo with the shell and filling together. My daughter did not like the shell alone but together she says it reminds her of the pesto stuffed mushrooms. I might try it again and add basil. The kids are more interested in me making the sweet stuff rather then the other "meal" kinda stuff. I know that the sweet stuff isn't bad for them but it just seems wrong in my head for them to eat banana crepes for breakfast, apple cinnamon cookies for lunch and rawkin fudge for dinner with a salad or some veggies thrown in here and there. I must say that I LOVE the rawkin fudge, though. It is very filling and doesn't suck you in like regular chocolate does. One piece feels so good, maybe two is all that a person can handle. Instead of nuts or frosting, I sprinkle cacao nibs on top because I LOVE them and can eat them in handfuls.

I am prepping for the upcoming week with some more flax crackers and some onion bread crackers. I made the falafels (beanless) and got a great zuke for spaghetti. I bought more pre-made cheezy kale. It's a great snack in the car. I know I can make it myself but it is SO nice just having it there and ready. I have a lot of parsley and cilantro left from the falafel so I am going to try to find something to do with it. I need more of those apple cinnamon cookies and am going to try to make these cinamon raisin balls. They look yummy, too. Oh yeah, my son requested Nori rolls for his lunch so I have the goods for that, too. Off to another week. Happy Valentine's Day! Today I practice self-love with a walk and some yumy food that loves me as much as I love it!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Late Nights

Well, I finished making everybodies desires last night but it took awhile...I worked until 9pm then started on the apple cinnamon cookies for my son's bake sale, the banana crepes for my daughter and the quiche for me. When I read the dehydrator time for the quiche shells I nearly fell over, they want it dehydrated for 36 hours. One should read ahead. I had all the ingredients and I was going for it anyway. I have to say that it was almost midnight when I started the quiche shells and the process was not hard but MAN was that some serious onion juice!!! The recipe is 3 large onions, 3/4 c ground flax and 3/4 c ground sunflower seeds with some nama shoyu but I forget the exact amount. eyes were burning. To take THAT much onion and slice and grind it means lots of that awful gas comes out and makes the eyes BURN. Then I had to mix it...burn burn burn Then I tried to put it on the sheet and shape it into a was too wet to do anything. I did the best I could and left it until morning. I went to bed with lots of skepticism about this recipe but when I got back to the dehydrator this morning the shells were easily shaped and I felt much better. It even smells SOOO good. Unfortunately, I won't be able to enjoy a quiche until tomorrow as there is more dehydrating time required but I am anticipating something delicious!!! All in all, despite the awful tears, this might be a pretty yummy and easy thing. Could make a nice cracker or bread. Foiled by the long dehydrating time I am not sure what to eat today. May have to go exploring. I like to save the salad stuff for dinner, it just feels best. Kids have wiped out my crackers-need to make more of those oer the weekend and I am not in the mood for crepes. Hmmmm. My body continues to drop size although I refuse to get on a scale but clothes are loser and more comfortable. My face looks brighter. With only four hours of sleep I don't feel so energetic but I don't feel awful either so maybe that says something. I probably need to eat soon or it all might back fire. I will post a pic of the finished quiche once I get that far. Reviews to come soon. :) I have high hopes!