Friday, January 29, 2010

Beginning to Shine

Well, the last couple of days have been going very well. I have not really felt too much of a longing for "typical" or "cooked" food. I even had a client bring me a favorite yummy treasure of lemon poundcake from Starbuck's but I had no desire whatsoever to eat it so I gave it back to her. It was a nice offer but it's deliciousness would have been lost on me. I think that phenomenon is kind of bizarre. I did not even want a nibble of the frosting.

My energy is picking back up and I feel like the true "me" is beginning to emerge again. I am starting back to my full pilates work outs taking it easy on my ankle and shredded supposedly healing achille's tendon. I have not felt a desire to get on my treadclimber yet so I am not. My attitude is picking up although some of the darkness from my bad autumn experience still sweeps around me at times. It seems I have less pores open to absorb it. All in all, it feels good to have my body shrink inside my clothing size again and I feel like I am beginning to shine again. All that "prana" from the fresh food is just making life brighter.

Yesterday evening I started to count my money as bills and rent were paid and became a little stressed (a normal response) and my body is fighting off a cold that my son keeps trying to share with me so I manifested this by craving "something". I did not want an orange or a banana or even the yummy strawberries I went and got at Whole Foods. I thought about making a piece of toast but didn't. I finally broke down and ate a bowl of steel cut oatmeal. I later ate some popcorn as the feelings processed. I am not sure why I needed something inside more substantial for my body to work on in order to distract me from the stress of finances and life but I did. I still feel okay today and I think the part of being "practical" at the re-start allows for this sort of thing.

I have been loving lots of fresh foods with salads and enchiladas. I made some delicious guacamole with my surprisingly yummy flax crackers. I am still very grateful for olives. I have also been craving a lot of water with lemon but I think that is my body seeking help in detoxing. I am going to have to do some food prep soon, just not sure which way to go yet as the cravings of recipe's have not quite set in. Perhaps this teeny tiny bit of a cold is keeping my senses off and nothing really sounds good. I'll let you know what's on tap. I got a great zuke for dinner tonight and some yummy tomatoes so I'll see if I can get some good spaghetti out of it. Working a lot at night lately is kind of throwing the whole dinner food prep out of focus, too. Some interesting things to sort through.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

jealous much?

Well, my body is loving the raw food. My son and I were discussing how we are feeling and we agreed that our boredom, emotions and mouth kinda want regular food but our bodies are CRAVING the raw food. He said when he eats it he feels like his body is just saying, "MORE, MORE, MORE". He ate all my yummy flax crackers that I packed for our evening errands and my banana and my fruit leather. I told him that he is eating my suppply and he whined in that pre-teen way about how much he L O V E D my food. I told him he could cross over to the "other side" and rawk with me. "But I love tortellini and pizza, too" he groaned. "I'm so jealous that you can just eat all of this delicious food and I am eating sandwiches and cereal bars".

You have no idea how much I wanted to laugh out loud hard and proud. I asked him if we could dabble once a week in tortellini or pizza would he walk on the rawkin side with me and without hesitation he agreed. BWAH HA HA! He is MINE! I am happy because affording regular food and rawkin food is expensive. When one is just eating raw the satiation stops the desire to stuff and stuff your face. Eventually it evens out and less but better food is consumed and the grocery bill goes DOWN. Now to convert my daughter a little harder-I see rawkin cheese cake in the near future. *ringing of hands in manipulative contemplation*

Personally, not feeling as much of that longing to be stuffed feeling. My body is starting to crave healthier foods and salad bars are totally exciting again!

Food today was all about easy and on the go: an orange, an apple, a banana, a delcious salad with spinach and tomatoes, carrots, corn, celery, brocolli and spicy ranch dressing, flax crackers, fruit leather and a caesar salad for dinner followed by an apple and a fruit leather.

Monday, January 25, 2010


This may sound crazy but I can feel my body shifting back into gear! It's strange because there is a piece of my brain that misses that stuffed but unsatiated feeling. Some sort of comfort in that feeling of "I can't eat another bite but if I could I would". Talk about clarity! My body is getting clear again. I feel satiated completely but NOT stuffed. My body is remembering this feeling but there is a process to allowing the shift back to healthier patterns to happen. The food is SO delicious and flavor-full. Oh my goodness do I love the favor of REAL FRESH food! It is so much better then the processed stuff. And I must say thank you to the Higher Power for olives! Great snack food on the go.

By the way, I did make the most delicious flax cracker ever...downside...I have no idea what all is in it. ARGH! I know it was a mix of golden and dark flax soaked. Braggs Amino Acids, sea salt, onion (I think) carrots, spinach, lemon, garlic and maybe the kitchen sink. I dehydrated it very very thin. I put a little tomato, spinach and avocado on a bunch of these and meltwd into heaven!!! My enchilada was delicious after a busy morning running only on one delicious orange I found at Whole Foods. Last time I was there I got some really good produce! Yummy caesar salad for dinner and the day is done. My son can;t wait for more Nori Rolls.
Not sure what tomorrow will bring except maybe some zuke squash spaghetti. Definitely more yummy crackers!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

What can I say, it was an awful autumn and I let everything good for me go away. I am not a victim, it wasn't taken from me. I am not full of excuses but I am sure it wouldn't be hard to justify myself with some whoppers. I was struggling with staying raw while dating and something happened that made me release my grip on it and everything else. This isn't the time or place to go into the details of what happened but you will just have to trust me that I had my reasons. Phew, they were big.
My kids and I agreed to try the S.A.D. diet through the holidays. Yes, the "Standard American Diet" with meat and everything. We had been vegetarian for awhile and before that gluten and cassein free so we had never tried the S.A.D. type of holiday. I have to say, I do not regret a thing...turkey and stuffing and home made cranberry sauce, well worth the gross out of meat and fat and so forth. I made my Grandmother's carmelled walnuts as Christmas presents and enjoyed the leftovers quite dearly. Mmmm... We made roasts and soups and stroganoff and all kinds of things we had never tried. I even found a delicious recipe for turkey chili for leftovers and I have NEVER liked chili before but LOVED this!!!! As the days turned colder our over and stove and crock pot warmed the house and the heart.
So, there's the up side of the S.A.D. way. It was nice BUT I do not feel as good. I gained weight back. My energy level plummeted. I can hardly get out of bed some days. My body feels bloated and sluggish all the time. I look forward to quick fixes for energy like caffeine and sugar. I crave sugar foods in the afternoon to get me through. I forgot that this is how it used to feel ALL the time. I miss my fresh food. A salad or a fresh fruit once in awhile started to become elusive. When you buy a lot of meats and breads and cheeses it is very expensive and tacking in fresh organic produce makes the food bill higher. Then, the kids turn to chips, crackers, breads and cheeses before they turn to carrots or apples. Where did my kiwi lovin' kids go?
My son became addicted to food. It has become a family joke that he sneaks into the pantry and steals food. All of a sudden you can hear off in the distance of the kitchen "c r r r u u n ch" coming from the shadows of the pantry and he will walk around with his cheeks puffed out stuffed with food he thinks nobody is noticing. I would find empty chip bags lying like carcasses along side empty cracker boxes in this graveyard of food packaging. His desire to exercise went away and he only moves his body to go play outside with his sister or throw and autistic fit. My daughter grew back her obsession for cheese and basically lives for her next fix. In the pre-adolescent world of an almost ten year old girl, mix in a cheese fix with hormonal swings and you got an ugly combo.
So, I woke up a couple of weeks ago and realized what has over taken us is the sluggish result of our eating. We were better rawkin. We were healthier rawkin. We were happier and more balanced rawkin. While rawkin food was a lot of work, it was not an addiction or an obsession. The work was worth it. I decided to approach the children with this fact. I simply said at a sit down family meal, "I miss our rawkin food" and immediately got, "NOOOOOO!" Laughing out loud, I could see this would be tougher than I thought.
I decided to divide and conquer. I seized the moment with my son alone in the family room a week or so later and said, "what would you think if I decided to go raw again?" and he stood still, afraid to move. I could see the wheels turning in his head as he battled with his response. My son loves me and respects me (yes, he's not quite a teenager yet) and wants me to be healthy and knows that I want him to be healthy. He KNOWS that raw food was so dang good for us that he can't argue the value and benefits of it. On the other hand...the boy loves the crackers and chips. He loves that salty processed food taste. His face began to wrinkle and ripple as he tried to hold back tears. I put my hand on his arm as he stood there and said, "but I love food soooo much, Mom." My heart broke. I questioned everything I am as a mother for the bazillionth time. What am I doing? What have I done? What have I turned into? What have I turned them into? Why did I have to learn about raw food? Why can't I be ignorant and believe our stupid food pyramid that the processed food companies want us to believe? Why can't I just numb my children in McDonalds and Disney like every other average Mom in America? I reassured my son that I would not ever force him to do raw food and that I would love him no matter what he ate and allowed the subject to drop.
My daughter was not as contemplative when I hit her up for a response. Her statement was “raw food is disgusting!”. There was no question about it, she was hooked on the S.A.D. way of life. I would have to be subtle with her and let her cross over on her own. A kid like my daughter can not be forced to do something without then needing to resist constantly. She needs to buy in. I could see I had my work cut out for me.
Last week I announced that I would be returning to raw food. There were grumbles but no screaming and running away. I left it at that. I kept the emphasis on myself. I brought it up again a few days later and said that while I was going raw I would not force anyone to go raw with me but that I would limit some of the processed food choices and bring in healthier alternatives in their stead. I explained that chips would no longer be available nor would crackers. This met gentle resistance but found agreement eventually. I also explained that I would not go 100% raw at first. I would gently and practically work my way back into it. I would have oatmeal available and I would allow sandwiches for school lunches but that cheese would eventually disappear. I also offered that dinner would be a non-raw choice. Heads bobbed up and down with hesitant agreement.
So I needed to assess the damage of allowing seeds and nuts to sit for six months. I am hesitant a bit because I am sure some have lost some of their flavor if not gone rancid but I am also thrifty (the nice word for cheap) and do not want to buy a whole new stash. I started with the flax seed. Examined thoroughly, they seem okay. Almonds check out too. So, here we go.
As I began grinding up flax seeds the excitement began to return to me. I forgot how much I love preparing raw food. I got all excited about my eternal search for the yummiest rawkin cracker. I forgot how much I love to think about the REAL flavor of food and how to combine it to make delicious treats. The energy came back as I played in the possibilities. What if I add this? What if I combine that together? SOOOOO much fun thinking about it again. I started to remember my favorite recipes…yes, the enchilada popped up highest. As I started to get excited something changed in my children.
“Hey Mom, can you make the cheesecake?” chirped the biggest vote of dissent.
“Oh and Mom, are you going to make the Nori Rolls?” said my son.
I knew this was a fragile time and I needed to be agreeable so I offered to make whatever they wanted as long as they promised to eat it and not let it go bad. Suddenly the enthusiasm for raw food returned. Bwah ha ha ha ha. The S.A.D. way is not match for a mother’s enthusiasm.
I grocery shopped and got the goods for their favorite recipes and mine. I have flax seed crackers of three different varieties (experiments) in the dehydrator that I dragged out of the pantry, dusted off and plugged in. We are on our way. I started our day today with fresh fruit as I grumbled about being too tired to cook breakfast yet. As they munched on their oranges begging for more fruit I laughed and teased them about wanting me to go raw. “Gosh, you guys are so pushy about making me go raw, stop it!” I later made them scrambled eggs to hold up to my end of the bargain. Tomorrow will be another story. Gently tip toeing into this is key.
I have corn thawed and ready to make tortillas for my enchiladas. I have flax seed crackers and fresh spinach and avocado and tomato to put on it. I have other flax crackers slightly sweetened with raw honey and cinnamon ready for almond butter and banana. I have raw nori rolls ready for cauliflower bits, sprouts, mushrooms and tomato for my son’s lunch tomorrow. (I’m such a good Mom to make his favorite) I have bananas ripening for my daughter’s favorite banana crepe. Oh yes, I’m gonna make her beg for it. Bwah ha ha. I have enthusiasm again.
I am a little trepidatious at the detox and challenge ahead in only going part way and still cooking regular food for the kids at times. I think the half way stuff is harder then full steam ahead but I think it is important to be practical and gentle with the transition for the kids and also for myself. It is hard to go to a friends house and see the different foods. It is challenging to do this. Our culture revolves around food. We have friends over for dinner. We go out for coffee. We are barraged with commercials about food and diets. The S.A.D. is EVERYWHERE and well marketed. We must start our swim upstream gently, playing in the current and splashing about with joy in order to grow the strength to better health. At least I think that’s what we should do. What do I know, really. Just trying to be practical.