Sunday, May 31, 2009

Sidetracked is the word

I had full intentions of doing a photo food diary today, but I kept forgetting to take pictures of anything we had eaten ! Just a weird sort of day where I kept getting sidetracked with life, and our internet kept going out. I was feeling kind of crampy most of the day , so we just took an easy walk this afternoon. It's not high intensity , but it is moving and moving is a good thing.

Tomorrow is my birthday - I turn 51. We have plans of going out to lunch and then do a little leisurely shopping ( I am looking for sheets of magnet for my computer printer), catch some movies and just kick back. And I will try to remember to snap some pictures !

Saturday, May 30, 2009

And now for some fun

Inspired by a post made by my friend TJ and because I feel like being silly

Saturday Survey

Don't you just hate that morning mouth taste? Nope. Tastes like chicken !

Do you have a sore throat? No

What can you hear right now? Listening to my MP3 player while hubby surfs and son watches a Pokemon DVD...New Radicals, Rich Mullens, The Who and more

Name three things you did yesterday: exercised, shopped, tormented my husband. It's better than sex

What was the last thing you spent money on? Food.

What is something your going to do a lot of this week? Ponder the questions of the universe, attempt to make a great home latte and exercise

Do you like the singer Bon Jovi? He was after my time.

What is the next concert you're going too? I have not been to a concert in years, out of choice. I used to go , and I was not impressed with the experience

What is your favorite channel to watch on the television? TLC and Showtime

Look behind you, what do you see? salt lamp, exercise mats and stability ball

What were you doing at 8am this morning? House stuff of various and sundry purposes

Can you crack your toes? No, but I can pick things up with them

What was the last movie you watched? Walk the Line last night on TV

Was it good? Yep- it was one of the greatest romantic and encouraging movies I have seen in a long time

Have you thrown popcorn at someone in a movie theater? Nope

Do you like redvines? Ick !

How about black liquorish? Adore it !

How does your hair look right now? Meatloaf looking for a topping with twinges of grey

How long till your next birthday? 2 days- i will be 51. EEEK !

What fast food restaurant has the best fries, in your opinion? Never eat the stuff anymore

Do you sing along to the songs you know while in the car? Nope. I save it for kareoke games so I can embarass my son and neighborhood cats.

Name five things you do on a regular basis: Breathe , blink, burp, pee, walk while chewing gum

Do you read often? Too often

Who last IM'ed you? I don't use IM's

Do you think Bigfoot is real? Yep, and his real nature is something like The Greenman in the Middle Ages in Europe

Is there someone you wish would just fall off the face of this earth? Nope.

Do you like the show Greys Anatomy? Never watch the show

Are you ashamed of your childhood? Nope. It was the reason afterschool programs were invented

Who are you thinking about right now? Wondering if I should succumb to doing Tweeter or Facebook

Is there anyone you look up to? Sadly, no

Are you hungry right now? No

Has anyone played a practical joke on you? Yep

Who was the last person to call you? Hubby

What did you do last night? 'Watched Walk the Line

Do you think you're good looking? Looks are in the eye of the beholder- i only see the inside of me and from that angle I am terrific

Are you cold right now? No

How is the weather outside? Sunny and 74

Have you ever had a broken heart? If so, how's your heart now? More than once. Now my heart is fine

Is there anyone who you love more then anything in the world? Yes.

Do you know the difference between "your" and "you're"? Yep

Do you have a facebook? If no, then why not? No- not yet and i don't know why

Do you do surveys often? Not on this blog

Do you have a best friend? Yes, and i am married to him

Do you hate it when people ask you question about the war? Which one ? I cannot hold a rational conversation when the topic is the Punic war

Are you interested in politics and what's going on in the world? Yes. It is proof that evolution is still in progress and there are still life forms crawling out of the ooze

Where is the next place you'd like to go vacation? Minnesota or Ireland, but odds of either happening are slim to none for many reasons

Name one of your fears: Ventriloquist dummies selling Mary Kay Cosmetics at a farmers market. Yes, it can happen

When you go to the theater, do you buy food there? If so, what do you get? Just the vat o diet soda.

How many hours of sleep did you get last night? About 5

Is there anything bothering you right now? Yes. I want ice water but I cannot fit ice cube trays in my freezer

Where is your sister right now? All three of them are most likely in their homes or at work

Is there any songs stuck in your head right now? If so, what? Yes-From the Beginning by Emerson Lake and Palmer

What is one of the worst things about waking up? Stiff joints

Have you ever felt like/have run away from home? Sort of- I tried to kill myself when I was 17 for a really stupid reason. A boy.

Last encounter you had with a police officer? Cannot remeber

Weigh in is what begins each Saturday

So it has been a bad week for exercising, good week for food intake and a week of another dietary change for reasons beyond weight loss.

Me- DOWN 0.6- I think it is hilarious that I tend to lose on weeks that I do not work out.
Son- UP 2.2- no exercise and the dietary change
Hubby- UP 1.4most likely the diet change

This past week we added yeast back to our diet because I was not seeing a great change in son's autism from the two weeks of cutting it out. This coming week we are going to eliminate dairy to see if this is the substance that is doing the most harm. It will be a much better week for exercise !

Friday, May 29, 2009

Metabolisim, wake up !!!

Still in planning mode, but at least today the sun is out and the dampness has drifted down to feeling like you are being splashed instead of being soaked. That being said, there is a plan in the works for a walk this morning.It will help not only our weight loss, but give both son and I a big dose of the Vitamin D we so greatly need !

This morning, in rare turn of events, son slept in. This is a kid who normally wakes anywhere from 4 am to 6 am, and has done so ever since he was a baby. He also likes to eat within a half hour of getting up, so we normally have breakfast pretty early. You get used to that. I got up early with dad, as the damp was making me very achy and it hurt to sleep, so I had some quiet time alone after he went off to work. I was starting to get hungry, but told myself to wait because the boy would be up soon and I don't want to cook breakfast twice. He did eventually wake up around 7, but by then i was so hungry I was starting to feel sick to my stomach ! We had our usual breakfast of oatmeal with the toppings, and normally this is enough to keep me going . Today because I was so hungry before, it did not seem to satisfy.

It got me to thinking about the other advantages of living by the extreme schedule. And then in got me to wondering if perhaps this action has caused my metabolism to get very lazy, and contribute to my stall that has lasted a year? Perhaps if I find ways to make myself starving to the point of sick a couple of mornings a week would help to make the scale move again at long last ?

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Not moving, but grooving !

Exercise ?? Who- me ???!!!???

This has been a bad, bad week for exercise.I have done none. Zip. Zilch. Nada. Well at least since Monday when I did some work with the stability ball and hand weights. It has just been one of those weeks. Trapped in planning land( Spend 3 hrs looking for one specific form you know you have on disc and discover 50 other things you can use and then learn that new stuff you thought you were saving did not save so find a substitute and...oh yeah, what the heck was I looking for ???)And then somewhere in there son reminds me it is dinner or lunch or something andI forget what I was doing all together. And interestingly enough, he has also ignored the chart for exercise. Only reason for this is that it was posted and not carried out for a week before posted, so it has no meaning to him.

I am not upset about it. The break has been for good reason, plus it has been so incredibly humid and cold out that my arthritis is flaring up. I have it in my right knee , due to an old injury, and in my spine. I know moving will help it be less painful, but sometimes certain things take a greater precedent than losing weight for a short time. I just have to take care that the short time does not stretch into a long one. At least I am guaranteed of getting in some walking tonight at the store, as we do one of three different grocery stops for the week. And it has been a really good week food wise, so all is not lost.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

How to convince yourself fat is where it's at

I am working very hard on creating some serious butt callouses right now. I am in major surfing /gathering/planning mode for net year's homeschool. What ? Take the easy way out and go to a home school convention to drop big bucks on numerous curriculum that may or may not work with my son or buy one of those school in a box things ? No way.My son's needs are too specialized to expect to find the right fit through either of those choices, so it means doing a lot of researching , creating and then laying it all out in lesson plans for the next year. It gives me a new respet of teachers everytime I do this. Lesson plans make for very dull writing tasks !

In the meantime, when it feels like my brain will explode from contemplating one more math concept or potential Language Arts lesson, I flip to reading the blogs of those I find inspiring for the weight loss journey. One of my new blog friends wrote yesterday about her inner motivations behind her weight gain. It was an earthquake, and the aftershocks were with her for a long time in her psycological landscape, and I understood very well just how those things beyond your control can grab you and keep a control over your life that is very hard to shake. It made me think of my own motivations, and come face to face with the fact that I am only begining to deal with many of them.

Flashback to the past. I was a little kid, very overweight but active and happy. I had gotten a wrong message that strong people were good eaters, and I was working on becoming Hercules. My weight was never really an issue to me ( my doctors always had other ideas), for there were so many other things in my life that had nothing to do with weight. I had boyfriends, dated when I wanted to , hated gym class but loves informal sports like most kids and so on. My mom would try to get me to diet in different ways ( including Aydes candies- remeber those ?), but I had no real reason to lose weight ,so I did not. I got married, expected to be a mom soon, and it did not happen. After 8 years I learned that my weight was preventing me from getting pregnant, so I worked hard at losing weight. I dropped 110 pounds , and at long last was pregnant.

That was only a teaser it seems, because I lost my first baby to a stillbirth. He suffered Intrauterine Fetal Demise( he died inside of me and stayed there long enough to put my life at risk from infection), and I delivered my first son knowing he would never take a breath or cry. His birthday was also his official death day. The event was traumatic, but is seems that it was preperation for what was to come. It was as if the Universe was asking me if I was really, really serious about being a mom, because nothing about that role was going to be anything like what I had anticipated that role to be. I greived, I searched for answers, I lost the baby weight I gained, and had a major abdominal surgery to correct the last of the damage from my first pregnancy ( a tiny bit of the placenta had broken off and drifted into my falopian tube, causing some massive ovarian cysts). And 10 months after my first son's birth, I was pregnant again.

Here the fun began. At 8 weeks I started bleeding heavy, and it was the first indication that this pregnancy was not going to be exactly normal. I experienced just about every problem that one could develop. I was on total bedrest, locked into an endless schedual of Dotor visits, test, high level ultrasounds, meetings with perinatologists and more. I was scared, and afraid of my own body. First infertility, then stillbirth, and now this. I started to feel a level of self hatred that few people talk about, but because of my baby I did all I could to stay healthy and moderately sane. Then he was born via C Section, and that did not go as planned. I was so big I could not arch my spine enough for an epidural, so I was totally knocked out for his birth. All this work, and I had to take a vacation for the big event. He did not stableize for almost 13 hours, so I did not get to meet my son till he was almost a half day old. He instantly knew my voice and my scent though, so no bonding damage was done. As atypical as all this was, it still was not the whole story.

I choose to exclusively breastfeed him, and while breastfeeding is something you can learn in theory, the experience supplies a million things no book or consultant ever could. My three sisters breastfed their babies with no problem, and I anticipated the same experience. He would latch on feircely( picture your toes being pulled through your breasts), but need to be on the breast for HOURS. He hardly wet or had a BM, and after 4 days he was down to one wet diaper a day. The staff at the hospital felt this was normal and discharged us. The first day home his eyes had fallen into the sockets, ,his color was grey and he was crying nonstop. I called the doctors and they told me to bring him to the ER. He was dehydrated and reccived IV fluids. I was tested and found that my body does not have the hormone required to produce milk, so I was starving my son for the first 5 days of his life. This fact brought on a whole new form of body hatered. I felt like I had the word fail written on my forhead.

Things then fell into somewhat normal for a time, and I struggled with the challenge of building back my body strength after all that bedrest and c section birth, being a new mom to a very active, bright little boy and my husband in training for the Deaconate. It was a red letter day if I got to shower and eat lukewarm food ! At 7 months Nick developed a serious ear infection, and that began an edless parade of doctor visits for the ear infection that would not quit. Then came the normal baby immunizations, and suddenly the bright boy on project head start was gone. What was left was something that had numerous problems that just were not what the books list as the normal baby things. By the time he was 4, I was totally fed up with the medical community and decided to part company with them. Shortly afterwords I learned the word Autisim and my son had met and become one. This was the final straw in my self esteem. Not only couldn't I do what an insect could do( get pregnant and nurture it's own young), but anything I touched in that vein turned to shit.Then I had a series of very early miscarriages, and I felt like I was the reincarnation Lucretia Borja. At that time I got this weird idea that if I made enough food in really good flavors, it would make it all better. If I made enough bread, sweet rolls and homemade pasta, I could make all of this go away. If I could cook and can massive amounts of food to over nurture my family, it would not matter that my body could not do so in other ways.

It didn't. It only packed on pounds and problems.

Now, as we deal with diet and supplements and exercise, I keep bumping up against my thoughts from that experience, as if it is finally time to take them out and heal. And heal I shall. I have learned that smothering is not the same thing as feeding, and quantity does not replace quality. Quality can get buried in quantity very easily. And rather than see myself as a failure because of my maternal experiences, I am begining to see that I am pretty Damned good. God does not give you more than you can handle, and if He belives I am up to this challenge because I have the skills, who am I to argue with that ?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

This little piggy...

The sun was out for about 2 hours yesterday, and then the rest of the day was grey, windy and COLD ! We had a fairly icy winter, and now we have the season of snapping tree limbs. Damaged limbs survive the winter storms, but come summer with the renewed growth cycle of the trees they lose their hold and the strong spring winds break them off. Between the damp and the dangers , it makes the idea of going to the woods not very appealing. So we had a day of lie low and retail therapy.

Started the day off with Pumpkin oats for 3. (Rolled oats cooked with solid packed pumpkin, cinnamon and brown sugar) We each take ours with slightly different toppings, just like the Three Bears. Baby bear had coconut, flax, crasins, butterscotch bits and toffee bits, Papa bear with cocnut, flax, crasins and goji berries, me with the same as papa plus wheat bran. It is one of our favorite ways to start the day !

Papa had to go sing at the Memorial Day services at the cemetary, and son and I stayed home to do our own things. First was some work with the stability ball and hand weights, and then our own intrests. Son was involved in some marathon on TV and I started combing the net for homeschool materials and lesson plans geared for special needs students. This is my 14th year of doing this, ( we began with two years of preschool and continued on since then) and I now know enough to spot something that is going to involve major work for me, and this year is going to be major prep work for me. Depressing ! Son was looking for a snack somewhere around then so we had our morning usual
Good ole yogert with fruit salad. It is so simple to toss together and so satisfying ! Then back to work for me. I was just starting to investigate math options for the year , and I realized a basic list of school supplies that I was going to have to assemble to make this all happen. It seemed very overwhelming to me, and by the time hubby got back my head was spining with a list of things I would need at Staples and places of that nature. We decided it would be a good day to go shoppingand hit out for lunch at one of our favorite places to expidite matters. Sweet tomatoes, here we come !
For those who have never been, Sweet Tomatoes is an all you can eat salad and soup bar. The also serve some amazing breads, muffins and pastas. The great thing is , you first hit the vegetarian salad bar with so many veggie options that your plate explodes if you take just a tiny bit of a third of the options. They also offer very healthy salad dressing options. My salad had too many veggies to remeber, let alone list !
They also offer 4 "signature salads", which change every month for the most part. This weeks offerings that I chose were a spoon of a Thai brown rice salad, Broccoli Madness, Strawberry feild forever and Wonton Chicken. Strawberry lemonade accompanied. So many veggies !
Then I made a pass at the soups and breads. I got a bowl of Chicken and 8 veggie stew/soup, two peices of whole wheat red pepper foccacia, and two little fat free fruit oatbran muffins( these guys had big chunks of real strawberries in them ! So good ! Another plus is the soup bowls hold about three quarters of a cup in total and the plates for the breads are saucer size. The portions are small, so it looks like a whole lot more on your plate. After this I was totally satiatied and knew that if I skipped all veggies at dinner I had still gotten in my goal of 5 veggies a day !

So then off the the stores and I got some of the supplies I needed. We decided to just come home because my knee and back was having a really nasty arthritis flare up because of the damp. Tylenol and arnica gel were not cutting it this time, and every step made me feel like my knee was going to snap in half. So we came back and I continued doing my surfing and word processing chores. Now mind you we had just eaten a feild of salad, and in normal human beings this would keep us. Not my son, the Autistic Boy who Must Live By Scheduals. If it is posted, it shall be. He got all confused because lunch did not contain the grilled chicken burgers as posted, and it was now snack time and we HAVE to have a snack.Uggh. To bloow him off would cause a melt down and a week of hard work to get him back to the schedual ( if it says we will have spinach, you must eat spinach) and every meal may turn into a meltdown. So I told him we could do things a little different because it was a holiday
So everyone got a cup of cherries and 17 cocoa dusted almonds. I am probably pushing my own tolerance level with the nuts, but with this everyone could just kind of graze on this if they did not eat it all at once. Sort of making the best of a situation if you will.

Now if that was not stimulating enough, 5 pm rolls around and dinner was not ready. This fact caused him a good deal of anxiety, and I could tell from my mommy sense that this second meal hiccup would cause a meltdown if not dealt with. Undersand that it is not because he is acting like a brat, but rather in the mind of an autistic, the world hits them as if everything in life happens at a painfully intense level of sensory perception. Routine allows them to keep a kind of tether to the world. If they know exactly when to expect what, they can deal with the stimulation better and find their own flow through it so to speak. Things not following the schedual are sort of like 9/11 happening in their brains( remeber the shock you felt ?). So, inner was assembled and served
Heartland Omega 3 Plus pasta, california Blend and Pork Ribs in the crock pot. The guys have a real thing for ribs, where as I have never been a fan of them. They always make me feel kind of sick to my stomach from the grease, but when you live in a home with others, you have to sometimes eat your least favorite things.

Looking back, somehow it felt like all I did was eat this day ! Eat , and develop sincere butt calouses from looking over homeschool possibilities !

Monday, May 25, 2009

Summer begins

Today is Memorial Day, and the official start of the summer , at least according to our American Mindset Calender of events. Pools and beaches open, campgrounds move to in season mode and more. For us this year the icing on the cake is the fact that school is out for the summer- or at least for a few weeks till I can get my act together with our course for the coming year, lesson plans, supplies and so forth. And while school is out, weight loss work will continue. Yesterday morning I created an official workout schedule to print out and post. With my son, if it is printed, it must be followed. In my mind if it is printed and posted in a very prominent place, I will not forget to get it done ! Having this kind of structure through the summer will be a good way to keep mindful of all the other things we have done this school year.

After our lunch at the buffet ( where my son did amazingly well in avoiding bread-y sorts of things and got his meat fix in with one rib and a 2 inch piece of sausage), we decided to wander around one of the other megasized"My Gosh this place should supply tram service to get from one end to the other" stores in our area to do some easy walking and window shopping. I was so glad I did , because I found two things I was needing , and one that just made me smile. First will come the smile item
Edible flowers !!!! There are several species of flowers that you can eat, if the plant has not been sprayed with chemicals. Dog Violets are one ( not the houseplant African violet variety), roses are another. How do they taste ? Each variety is slightly different, but most are a very mild lettuce kind of taste. Colorwise , it is a whole different story. We had flower salad with grilled portabello mushrooms on Arnold's Thins for dinner, and it was just plain happy to look at.

The needful things involved the making of coffee. I seem to have a problem with coffee made in a home drip coffee maker. I have noticed that I can drink resturant coffee with no problem as well as instant, but with stuff I make at home I start to get heartburn, then start feeling really sick and finally my bladder goes completely crazy. It is not coffee, but perhaps something with mold that forms in the silicone hose that connects the water resivoir to the heating part. I have tried drying it out after each use, running vinegar through it weekly to clean it out, and nothing helps. So I wanted to get a stainless steel percolator ( can totally take apart and clean) or something of that nature. I also realized that my teakettle was aluminum ( my good one bit the dust about 2 years ago) and the fact that I was now using it for making my daily tea or instant coffee scared me, so I tossed it and used my good pans to boil water. So I was THRILLED to find these:
A French Press glass coffee maker and a steel and copper tea kettle. The good stuff ! To make coffee in one of these you put in the grounds, fill with boiling water, let it steep for a minute and then depress the plunger on top. Th grounds are strained to the bottom , and coffee to drink remains in the carafe. It tastes more robust than that which you get from a drip maker, and everything comes apart for complete cleaning. Best of all, it is about as low tek as you can come. I am in love with my new finds !

On tap today- walking, work with the stability ball and hand weights while hubby is off to sing at the services, school planning and something for fun. Perhaps I will manage to get down to the family graves this day.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Meat- it's whats for dinner.

9 out of 10 experts agree- the tenth one is caught in traffic and is unable to respond to the survey at this time. It seems for anything you do or try to do in life , there are experts and not all experts share the same opinion for a variety of reasons, so you have to go with your gut feeling in the end. Such is the case with our current dietary journey- or "What's for dinner mom 2.0"

We have done a yeast free diet for 2 weeks in an attempt to detox this from both mine and my son's system. It's not the first time - we did this when he was 3 1/2 and I broke a vicious cycle of ear infections and got him to make his first breakthrough.At that time I was told the most benefit would be seen after 2 weeks, but nothing about a follow up lifestyle move, and so after 2 weeks we went sort of back to normal.This time I know a lot more about the follow up aspects of such a detox move like digestive enzymes, probiotics , vitamins and a certain way of eating. I have seen some definite improvements in my son's communication skills ( behavior is rarely a problem now that he is older), but not a major step. I don't know if there will be major breakthroughs made from the dietary front with him now- I think further speech therapy sort of work will do greater good at this point. From a weight loss standpoint it made no change for either of us, so I decided that it would be best to move into phase 2 of this. Begin to add yeast breads , but only high fiber whole grain ones and combine them with protien. In short, WELCOME BACK ARNOLDS THINS and such ( cue dancing in the streets). So my son's world turned to joy when he was told at lunch he could get the bakery pizza slice instead of the sushi or the soup and salad. Hubby also breathed a sigh of relif , and so did I. We both watched very closely for any signs of remergence of the Autistic behaviors, and happily none surfaced.

When we got back home I started cutting up veggies, fruit salads and lunch meat ends for use during the week. (This store sells the heels of deli lunch meat at reduced prices, and we buy them for different uses). Son sat next to me, wanting to help with the prep, and chatting to me about this , that and the other thing. Turns out he was waiting with baited breath for me to start cutting up the meat ends so he could swipe a few samples. While I was planning our menu he kept going on about country ribs and "big meat" ( roasts to the reast of the world), and while shopping he was really insistant that we get meat on the bone. Being memorial day weekend they had good prices on ribs. When I pointed out a slab of pork ribs , he almost got weak in the knees. As I was cubing up the meat ends he kept grabbing peice after peice, and it dawned on me. This kid is jonesing for meat and is probably due for another growth spurt ! Boys , and teen boys in particular, have times of a greater level of protien than women do, and it is wise to follow their body leads for growth.Last time he did this I thought it was a miracle because he would only eat plain pasta ot penut butter and jelly sandwiches. He stared craving meat and he would go through pounds of it, and then grew something like 4 inches in height.With him weight loss is really tricky. We have autism to contend with , a major weight loss PLUS the fact that he is still growing through it all. Figuring what is nutritionally best for all these demands can leave you scratching your head sometimes.

So today , to satiate his inner meat beast, we are going to hit Golden Corral Buffet. He can get his meat fix and we won't go bankrupt. And good news is , meat is gluten and yeast free !

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Scale Gods, like Guitar Gods are a matter of opinion

It's Saturday once again , and it's time to drag out the scale to see just what the numbers have to say. Numbers, as we all know, are the "God" that all those who choose to make a lifestyle change in which they will become healthier. Numbers on the scale, numbers on a tape measure, numbers back from a lab with blood work. Numbers are God. So in the spirit of Gomez Addams , playing with his trains while pondering if Fester was his brother or not, I too say Spirits above me, shall I be blessed or Damned as I step on the altar called a scale .

And the numbers are....
Me- UP 0.6 ( is this thing stuck ????)
Son DOWN 0.2
Hubby DOWN 3.0

However, there are more things to consider progress than the number on the scale. Son and I have made a big dietary change and your body sometimes takes a while to adjust to the change. I can be dealing with a massive yeast dye off, and I suspect that I am about to get a visit from Aunt Flo, who's visits are more and more unpredictable these days. Son is becoming more and more conversational and just plain teachable. Hubby is not having to eat the foods now forbidden to son and I , and he is getting more on board with this new way of eating. The numbers for them are saying that progress is being made. For me it seems I have to find a different definition of progress.

Friday, May 22, 2009

And a white flag of surrender is raised

Hello. My name is Diane and I am a coffeeholic.

Yesterday was the day that broke me. For a month now I have been wandering around in a fuzzy headed state, being technically awake but not fully connecting on all cylinders so to speak. I have struggled to make breakfast without setting the house on fire, removing ALL articles of clothing before showering and so forth. I even managed to find myself attempting to slice lemons with a teaspoon, and needing to sit back to figure out just why it was not working. It has been a real comedy ! Yesterday morning I was prodded out of bed by my son and I felt really brain fogged. I struggled through the morning , only to find myself spacing out during school and falling asleep while we were playing some games on the Wii afterwords. The final straw came when I had to ask my son what our address and phone number was while filling out some forms. To be honest, that scared me. I really need to be functioning on all cylinders mentally. I am my son's teacher, therapist, trainer, dietitian , guardian and good buddy along with being his mom, wife and best friend to my husband and my very own person. While some will say caffiene slows down weight loss, for me it makes absolutely no difference with the movement of the scale. It does send my adrenal glands into overdrive and they become overtaxed and shut down. Then the rest of my endocrine system takes a nose dive and everything gets out of balance.

However, if I cannot think clearly enough to function, I am very likely to accidentaly do something so totally stupid that it injures a lot more than one system. If I cannot shake the cobwebs enough to remeber where I live and how to reach me , how can I deal with more complicated concepts like motivating me to exercise , helping my son maintain his balance AND run the occasional vaccuum through the house without sucking up clothes, blankets and bills ? (do not laugh...I have actually done that). How can I preform higher functions like read a food label to see how many calories, grams of fiber and fat AND look for things like yeast, artificial flavorings and high fructose corn syrup if I am not functional enough to remove my socks before getting into the shower ?

I wave a white flag of surrender on this one and approach the front of the room to admit the truth. Hello, my name is Diane and I am addicted to coffee. But you know what ? It is the kind of addiction that offers a lot more benefits in allowing than it does in dropping, so I think I will keep it.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

How Autism taught me about food.

Still feeling really, really crappy , but still staying on program. Last night after my normal evening snack I was feeling very hungry and I decided to satiate it with something high volume, low calorie and yeast free. I choose a rice cake with a wedge of laughing cow light an a great big glass of water. Then son was going through his box of memories ( he saves birthday cards and such) and found a coupon book I made for his last birthday. In it was a coupon for an extra sugar free jello and fat free whipped cream. So I got him one and decided I really, really wanted one for myself. I ate it but asked myself why did I choose something this junky and toxic ?

I have decided not to buy these jello things anymore because while they are only 10 calories each, they are junk calories and wrapped in too many chemicals. The artificial sweetener, the dye, the chemicals to flavor it - not a single thing found in nature . And in getting rid of these it will eliminate the next to last source we ingest of artificial sweetener. The other one is sugar free jello pudding, but now that everyone in the house is disciplined enough to take one and stop, I think we can safely take the hit of regular pudding. I will still buy it pre-made in those little cups though because the portion control factor is still needed. Now I want to buy a brand that is closer to nature instead of so chemically altered for shelf stability and mouth feel. These two items gone from the house means farewell to all artificial sweetners and chemical additives.

Son has been making some breakthroughs and spent yesterday talking my ear off about any and everything. I had to laugh , because when we started down this whole road of Autism the first definate clue I had was that he did not talk. He was 3 and never even did the normal baby bables. Our pediatrician patted me on the head for a while and said I was being a nervous mother. I would mention this to my parents, and my dad would say "don't worry- one day you will be begging to shut him up". To be honest I prayed that day would arrive soon. Finally it did and has brought many other days of nonstop chatter. However over the last month the chatter has begun to fall into the pattern of real human conversation, and about things other than the tv schedual, the order of upcomming household events . Diet and supplementation have been the factors in this change once again, and it serves as a reminder to me that we must live this lifestyle not just to lose weight, but to bring my son totally into the light of normalcy. When you consider those factors, the urge to cheat or fall off program rapidly dissapears. Back at the worst, before the supplements, life was a series of meltdowns , baffling behaviors and really bad food based on the avoidance of those meltdowns, accompanied with feeling physically unwell and trapped. Supplements brought a real gain in comprehension and then dietary changes were possible. With dietary changes came an increase in nutrition which fed the body in ways it needed, and then the rest came to be. Seeing this change with my own eyes is a pretty potent protection against the desire to eat cake or ice cream or even Grandma's Marshmellow salad. While they may taste good, the also mean a huge backslide into a world of darkness and silence. You just never want to go there again.

In a very weird way, this is the final step in the whole changing my own relationship with food journey. As a little kid I learned from my parents that good eaters were strong people, and strong people were the only ones worth dealing with in life. Then I learned that strong people became strong not because of what they put in their mouth but rather because of the way they responded to life. Food was merely fuel and nothing more.Those who are not strong need the compassion and aid of those who are strong in order to become strong themselves. Now I am begining to see powerful examples of how the proper mix of nutrition can form something into the most awesome, resiliant and strong machine ever designed- the human body. When the mix is wrong, the machine malfunctions badly. When it is right, it is almost magical. With the proper mix of nutrients, activities and emotional satisfaction and the elimination of a daily does of unnessisary chemicals through food and enviroment, that machine can continue to function a lot longer and more efficiantly than we have come to belive as the norm.

We are indeed fearfully and wonderfully made. And God speaks to us in the ways we listen to the best it seems.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


Sick as a dog. Yeast die off sucks. Happily son is not as greatly impacted as I am. I never saw this one coming !

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Motivting me when i want to be a slug

Yesterday I had to do a lot of "mothering" to myself. Remind myself to sit up straight, eat right and get up off my butt and move because it would make me feel better. I had a headache and kind of all over body sort of headache which I am assuming is due to my body being cleared of toxins. If given my own choice over the events of the day it would have been spent lying around in a big feather bed with a sleep mask and several servants addressing all the must do details of the day. This was not a possible option, and it would not help my body go through the process with greater efficiency. Moving me, however, would.
So I began the morning with a good breakfast. Choice was the mom burrito ( egg beaters, mushroom, zucchini, green onions and red peppers on a LaTortilla with Laughing Cow lite and baby spinach topped with salsa), with an ounce of Swiss cheese on the side to insure satiation level. Green tea and water on the side. Son was also feeling the yuck, so I had to give us both a big motivational talk to get us moving. Thank God for MP3 players and pants that feel cute. New weird motivation for me- if for some reason I think the pants I am wearing feel cute, I will be more likely to walk. It's not an idea that they look cute to anyone, but they feel cute to my body. it's silly, but if it works it works.

This last week of school is being spent sort of as an intro to some of the things we will cover next year, and for science this will include physics. ( I am smiling bravely, squeezing my fists and telling myself we can do this). After some introduction and teaching my son that it is better to place his hand on his chin and say "I see" instead of looking like a goldfish with an open mouth when confused we took a snack break. Fruit salad in plain yogurt with stevia. It was so filling I was beginning to wonder if we really needed morning snacks again.

Lunch was another variation on the lunch able. Roast turkey and Swiss on rice cakes with celery and carrot sticks. Homemade minestrone soup and water completed the meal. After lunch we finished school and i was able to crack into one of the three books I got on Sunday ( Louder than Words by Jenny McCarthy). I had been hesitant to read any of her books in the past, but as I embrace the biomedical intervention of Autism I keep hearing other parents cite her books as helpful and informative, so I decided to see for myself. While her life before becoming a mother was nothing like my own, I found that a lot of her experiences echoed mine, and gave me the ability to put my own journey into words. In one sense this is a very good thing, but in another it is very painful as I am finding that for each experience I am able to put into words it brings up some serious questions that I have never asked even myself. In asking them I become very angry and repeatedly have to remind myself that I am a human dealing with many other humans and none of us is perfect. While we can help and support each other, each of us must deal with their own journey and their own load. Even though I keep this in mind, I cannot help but feel real anger at several events in the journey.

For afternoon snack we turned the fruit and yogurt mix to smoothies with 5 All Bran crackers for the filling fiber feel. Afterwords we both felt like absolute slugs and wanted to just find a cave to crawl into. When daddy got home we had originally planned on going to Ikea to buy some new bowls, but I suggested we just visit Target for the same. We really needed the bowls or I would have begged that we just stay home and be slugs.
Dinner was marinated chicken breast ( fresh lemon and orange juice with basil and garlic), whole grain assorted rice mix and spring themed steamed veggies. Lemon water to wash it down. Afterwords son decided to go watch TV in his room and hubby and i watched a marathon of How they do that - an engineering sort of show on The Science Channel. All evening long I was just feeling tired and emotionally exhausted. Somehow I started talking about some of the things I was feeling angry about with this whole autism experience and the intensity of them made me wonder just how I have buried this for so long. I think I need to journal about this, as journaling has proved to be a most helpful tool in the past to overcome issues. When I dealt with emotional eating in the past it was journaling that proved to be the best tool in my recovery. I trust it will do as well with this.

For a snack i had a sugar free pudding, a fiber one bar and an apple, and then i asked myself why am I ending my day with such crappy food choices ? While they are low in points, they are filled with so much not real food that they could have a negative impact. I plan on changing it up tonight.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Healing is not pretty

You know what happens when you make a dietary change that addresses getting rid of an allergy or something that is intolerant to your body that you have been consuming for a while ? It detoxes. And detoxing is not pretty. I woke up yesterday feeling just plain icky, and it kept up through the day. I am doing the removal of yeast diet with my son, and we are both feeling the affects of detox. Means it is working. Just a note- some of the things we eat do not fit the official classification of yeast free, but I have allowed them because according to energy testing ( it's sort of like applied kinseology), our bodies can tolerate them at this time. It may change as we become more candida free.

Breakfast was pumpkin grains ( oats, wheat berries and barley) with olive oil, bran, goji berries, coconut, flax and crasins. The guys then went off to church services and I got to spend time in my own studies. While doing that i found out more about completely fresh coconut that i had bought for it's anti fungal properties, and what to do with it. I think I got a bad patch of it or something because it was really terrible in taste and texture. Come to think of it, I am now wondering if this stuff was not the pulp of the tree wood instead of the fruit ? I will have to investigate that.

The guys came home for lunch and I fixed something my husband has had a kind of craving for- polish sausage. Son and i had them rolled up in a LaTortilla high fiber tortilla with celery, carrots and brocco-flower on the side. Also included was plain nonfat yogert and fruit salad. We then headed out for a trip to Trader Joes and Borders, and skipped the woods because I was feeling really icky and hubby is dealing with a bout of allergies. I got three books at Borders ( two by Jenny McCarthy on Autism and biomedical intervention and one on a yeast free diet) and we found goodies at TJ. Son had decided that sardines were something he wanted to try as well as dragon fruit, so i bought them for him to try. After tasting he has determined that sardines are disgusting but dragon fruit is delicious !

Dinner was fulfilling another request of my hubby- meat loaf. This one was made with ground chuck and BBQ sauce and cooked in the crock pot. Boy have I come a long way ! As a child and most of my adult life i have eaten meatloaf and liked it. Not anymore. I could not eat all of mine. On the side we had baked potatoes, Asian themed steamed veggies , a green salad and lemon water.

There was no time for snacking much of the day, and i just did not feel hungry so I skipped it. In the evening while watching The Tudors I remembered that I was low on dairy for the day and kind of hungry, so I made myself a snack of plain yogurt with fruit salad and a Fiber One bar with water. Sweet, filling and satisfying.

I am still feeling kind of yucky today , so we will see what we will see with exercise. it is out last week of school as well, so things are going to be a little out of the norm.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Fridge tetris

It's official. I now have enough yogert in my fridge to bathe in. I also now remember one of the biggest reasons I started buying the containers of Yo Plus instead of other options. It is a matter of a serious space consideration for one thing, compounded by a sudden increase in the price of powdered milk. About 3 years ago I was making yogert on my own in our crock pot, but then we started on our weight loss journey and points became the big focus and this commercially made yogert with added fiber and splenda was very desirable. And then it won out because of space. Ours is not simply one person losing weight and the rest in the house doing their own thing. There are three of us, and we each require a certain number of servings of specific food groups for good health. In the case of dairy, hubby and I because of age require 3 a day , and son the same number as well because of his age. That is 21 servings in a week per person. A serving of dairy has to be a minimum of 20 grams calcium- a cup serving of milkor yogert, an ounce of hard cheese, two ounces of soft and so forth. So fitting 63 dairy servings into a home fridge ( along with all the other stuff) is a bit of a tricky buisness. We eat 62 out of 63 meals per week made in this kitchen, and there are only so many hours in my day. For this reason , advanced prep for many things becomes a matter of survival. In the case of a simple matter like a healthy lunch and healthy snacks, we opt for home made soups, fresh fruit and veggies. Now add dietary considerations like yeast free, minimal additives, and AFFORDABLE. You will not see Greek Yogert on our plates, but you will find lings like Dannon Nonfat plain yogert with home made fruit salad ( vat of this also stuffed into the fridge with the surreal vat of yogert). Saturdays seem to be spent shopping, chopping and playing tetris with my fridge. I am not complaining- I actually enjoy doing this.

Breakfast was pumpkin oats with goji berries, ground flax, coconut, crasins, wheat bran and olive oil. It is something that keeps me going, and one of the few times during the week when hubby gets to have oatmeal. He brown bags breakfast and lunch, and often eats those meals while at his desk, buried in work. Weekends are a chance for him to eat a real breakfast, and oats are the weapon of choice.

One of the changes we are making is to use cleaner yogert- Dannon plain nonfat and add your won toppings. Because of time and volume of food, yogert and fruit is now moved to snack time. Here is the morning snack- plain yogert with an apple and stevia

Lunchtime hit while we were shopping, so we hit the deli at our favorite grocery store , that has a ton of healthy options that are tasty and affordable. I got a bowl of potato leek soup and somn chose brown rice sushi, daddy got a stromboli. Sadly strombolis are one of my sons favorite foods, but because the dough is made with yeast, it is a no no.He adores sushi and it is a treat for him because mommy cannot have it due to allergies. I was really happy to be able to suggest a bigger favorite for him. Nornally, Saturday lunch is the only meal we eat that I do not prepare at home, and I am really glad that our store has so many ready made food options !

Back at the ranch, and the chopping and fridge tetris begun. I decided that the most efficiant thing I could do with the snacks would be to cut up my own fruit salad with whatever was on sale and then simply portion it out at snacks. This week the choices were strawberries, cantalope, baby watermellons and mangos. Makes for a mix that is tasty to eat but really sloppy to prepare. So afternoon snack was plain yogert topped with this mix and stevia.

Dinner happened after all this chop and prep stuff, and it was fast. Grilled beef burgers on swiss cheese with Kashi Tomato Bushetta crackers ( crackers are yeast free enough for son's tolerance) and raw carrots, celery and brociflower with laCroix water. I did not get a chance to cut up lemomns for water) I really like easy and fast Saturday dinners, as by that time I really don't want to deal intensively with food anymore.

Today we are planing a walk in the woods, a trip to Trader Joes and a stop at Borders- my three favorite places on earth ! Have a good one !

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Saturday, and we face the scale

First off, weigh in. How did we fare with a week of exercise, eating within our points and calorie range, getting in all health goals, no coffee, no sugar and switching to an anti yeast diet ?

Me- up 0.4 pounds. ( You thought I would lose ? You silly person . My body does not know how to lose it seems !)
Hubby- up 2.8. He made the decision to eat the things we are trying to get out of the house with this new way of eating
Son - DOWN 3.2 !

Yesterday seemed to be food that impressed someone

Breakfast was an egg beater scrambled egg with green onions, mushroom and zucchini on a La Tortilla wrap with a wedge of Laughing Cow lite , baby spinach and topped with salsa. On the side was Yo Plus, apple, water and green tea. For some reason, the addition of salsa on the burrito made my son get all excited. He kept going on about how fancy and beautiful it was and how I was the best mom and the best "cooker". he cracks me up when he gets wowed .

Our walk had to be canceled due to rain, so we did Biggest Loser Yoga instead and laughed at parts were we both lost our balance.This made a good start to the school day I think. Didn't we all love those days when our teachers were revealed to be very human ?

Lunch was another "how fancy mom! " deal. Take two slices of turkey breast and a slice of provolone cheese. Lay the meat out, place the cheese on top, roll it up like a jelly roll and cut into slices. Add 18 All Bran crackers, celery and carrot sticks, a mug of butternut squash soup, yp plus , an apple and water, and you have something that is better and fancier looking than a lunchable. This is the last time Yo Plus will be eaten by me. It is only one point per container, but has artificial sweetner in it, which I am going to avoid in the yeast free move. Stevia sweetners are allowed.

Dinner was a result of needing to run out to do part of the grocery shopping and "if I see one more peice of marinated grilled chicken I will scream" kind of thing. KFC's new grilled chciken to the rescue. There was another reason for this- we plan on going for an overnighter in a couple of weeks and we need to find yeast free options to eat. KFC's grilled chicken is pretty darned tasty, and if you toss away the biscuits, yeast free. Daddy went to go pick this up and ate the four biscuts before bringing this home because son is an absolute bread junkie, and if he saw them it would be World War 3 at the dinner table. How can I fault a guy for doing what he belives is in the best intrest of his son ?

So another week begins. I am sticking my tounge out at mister Scale. The numbers may be going in the wrond direction still, but I am getting hip bones and something that appears to be a butt.I never had one before- it is exciting !

Friday, May 15, 2009

Another day, another walk

Allergy Boy had a much better day yesterday, and so we were able to resume our exercise somewhat. How did he get over this so fast ? I think part of it is his age- his body may be able to throw off his childhood allergies as it matures. Other factor is most likely that when he gets sick, mom breaks out the alternative medical tools for intervention. In this case it involved extra vitamin C, acupressure massage and a couple of reiki treatments. Poor kid has seen the inside of a Doctors office so rarely that he gets terrified of the prospect of seeing them .

Breakfast yesterday was Pumpkin oats with bran,goji betties, coconut, ground flax and mission figs. I have discovered that I really prefer the Mission figs to the klamata figs as they are moister and have a milder flavor. There is almost a chocolate undertaste to them, and how can anything that resembles chocolate be bad ? I also grabbed a carton of Yo Plus ,an apple, green tea and water with this. Then out for our walk . We noticed a pair of ducks had decided to visit the swimming pool in the complex for a while and the local hawks were flying overhead more than normal. Several of these were seen with prey in their tallons, and I kind of shuddered to think about what that prey might be. So many baby animals around these days. All are either the eaters or the eaten. It is natures way, but part of me wonders how the animal moms of those babies that have become the eaten feel.

After tackling most of our school objectives for the day we broke for lunch.Turkey burger with provalone, carrot and celery sticks, cantalope, yo plus. not pictured a cup of minestrone soup and water. I an trying to move to a more yeast free diet for both myself and my son to address some of the challenges we are facing. For him it is a move to adress his Autism, and for me it is to correct some digestive, female and weight related issues. With him it is following a gut instinct on my part ( why crackers are okay but bread makes him crazy), and with me it is a strong body of research done through alternative medical circles that indicate the root problem to my issues as a Candida overgrowth. Result is some things are going to change in our diets.

After school came an afternoon of school planning, menu tweaking and grocery list making. Next week is our last week of school- hooray ! Dinner was something I called "a member of the food family". Take some organic quinoa and top it with a mix of black beans, corn, onions, salsa and sprinkle it with a quarter cup of low fat mozzerella. Kinda sorta south american chili I guess. On the side there was zuchini and onions sauteed in coconut oil with oregano , tossed green salad and lemon water on the side. Virgin coconut oil is a good choice for health and it is a great anti fungal, but I really do not like the taste or the smell. It does not smell like coconut to me in the least !

Starting Saturday I am going to drop the Yo Plus for son and I and move to plain nonfat yogert with our own fruit and stevia. Because of convenience, I am also going to pull out the fruit and yogert from our meals and move it to snack times. Question in my mind this morning has been what to add to the Mom burrito meals to give the same satiation level without raising our daily caloric intake. It's simply a matter of switching things up, and I just have to focus a little to find the solution

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Allergies are glamerous

Ah, the glamor of spring ! The beautiful flowering trees, the birds in the air, the yards full of flowers and re-greened lawns, the sounds of lawnmowers filling the air, and the return of the Boyous Snrokesaurus Horribulus - the allergy suffering boy. Characteristics of this species includs sneezing, red eyes, a diminished spirit and a non stop runny nose

Poor kid is affected by nature's bounty once again, but thankfully this year is not as bad as it has been in previous years, and I am very thankful ! Sadly, because he was feeling so miserable and clingy, there was no exercise yesterday for either of us. We shall see what we shall see with the scale. I am not that concerned because to be honest the scale does not seem to be cooperating much with me even when I do a lot of exercising, and whatever cooperation I see dissipates the next week. My son in contrast is constant. He always needs, wants and desires me no matter what the scale says, so I think I opted for the better portion here.

Breakfast was Mom Burritos- egg beaters with red pepper, mushrooms and green onions on La Tortilla high fiber lo carb tortillas with a wedge of Laughing cow lite and baby spinach. Yummy ! On the side was a carton of Yo plus digestive yogurt( I am thinking I should buy stock in these guys), an apple, water and green tea. I remarked to myself at how different we are not than we were 3 years ago. Had I even attempted this kind of breakfast with my son, it would have resulted in a melt down and then an entire morning of rocking and spinning with a mentally dark place for the rest of the morning. Now that we have the texture issues in a controllable range and have made so much headway with him through diet, such a breakfast is possible and have a normal, productive morning afterwords. Sometimes we lose sight of the whole big picture when our minds get wrapped too tightly around weight alone.

Lunch was our version of the lunch able - 2 Wasa high fiber crackers with a slice of provolone and 4 thin slices of turkey breast. Carrots, grape tomatoes, celery and a fourth of a cantaloupe in slices along with homemade lentil soup and Yo Plus. Water to drink. Incidentally, we do not get one use for these disposable water bottles. Each one is rinsed and refilled about 10 times before it is disposed. We arrived at this solution some time back because it works the best for us. In a perfect world we would not use them, but perfection is something we are still working hard to archive.
Dinner was grilled marinated chicken breast( in fresh lemon juice, fresh orange juice, basil, ,oregano and garlic powder) with saute's baby spinach ( yum), rice pasta and a tossed salad. The rice pasta tastes a little "flat", but I imagine this one would absorb whatever flavors it is used with very well. Spinach never tasted better than the way it did being sauteed ! I sprayed the pan with Pam and added a tablespoon of olive oil ( three of us so a teaspoon each), and sprinkled the spinach with garlic powder and just kept flipping till it was wilted. It gave it a very deep, rich sort of taste that we all loved.

Last night I caught a show on Discovery health about a family with six kids, all who have Autisim but each at a different level on the spectrum. I watched it and applauded the way it was covered . It highlighted so many of the challenges that parenting an autistic child inolves , but you kind of forget to include in the "laundry list" of descriptions when you talk to others about your experience. ( I think this is because you get so totally overwhelmed with the day to day reality that it is impossible to remember all). It was rebroadcast later, and I was able to watch it again with my husband. While he is a very good man and good father, he does not spend 24/7 here and a lot of the realities of this miss his viewing and therefor understanding. Many times he mistakes different actions our son does and a kind of disobedience, and I have to remind him that this is not the case. Our son is not capable of that level of thought process...yet. Many of his behaviors are coping devices that he must use in order to live in a world where the volume to everything (to his interpretation) is turned up to an intensely painful level. I was so glad that hubby was able to see this show as well. One rule of life I have learned is that no matter how intelligent, factual, honest and open a man's wife is, if she tells her husband something it gets a kind of pat on the head "oh aren't you cute" kind of attitude and response from her husband. That is till a complete stranger tells him the same information, and then it becomes gospel and he gets converted to action. Sadly as long as a man takes the attitude that it is just a cute weird thing that his wife is saying, so does the rest of the world believe and act accordingly. ( She is just being hysterical/hormonal/in a mood or so forth). The minute the man becomes convinced that it is so, the world suddenly moves in agreement.The world, the extended family, the community and so on. It's a fact of life they never share with you, but it still makes me want to line people up and smack the collective world in frustration !

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Old people ROCK !

I am giggling about the results of last night's Biggest Loser finale. I think it is best summed up with three words- old people rock ! I would like to think that once we get past a certain stage in life ( something I jokingly refer to as the hair pulling stage of our reproductive years), our bodies calm down and we can make them behave in ways we only dreamed of in our 20's. I am between the ages of Ron and Helen ( tho there are many mornings I feel like Jerry), and when you toss aside the game playing aspects, it's folks like these that remind me that we older folks are still forces to contend with. Heck, we survived a childhood of concrete and steel playgrounds, car trips without car seats or seat belts,numerous food additives , the sexual revolution AND Disco . We CAN do this too !

Yesterday began with a breakfast of pumpkin oats topped with crasins, coconut, ground flax, goji berries, wheat bran and olive oil with an apple, Yo plus digestive yogert, green tea and water on the side. Perhaps I am perpetually 2 years old and this breakfast appeals to that part of me. I love mixing and swirling all the toppings in before I eat it . Sort of like playing with healthy finger paint or something.

We were going to go for a walk again yesterday but my son is being affected by all the tree pollen in the air. He gets a bad bout of allergies in the spring, and it usually leads into his one time a year bout of getting really sick. He was complaining of being really stuffed up and feeling "snorky", so I told him we would skip it for today. I did some pilates work with my stability ball and we did the best we could with school for that day. Homeschool kids do not really take sick days- they just get a change in lesson plans.
Lunch was a Cheeseburger removed from Paradise. Make that a grilled turkey burber topped with provalone cheese minus the bun. In it's place were som Kashi Tomato Bruchetta crackers, carrot and celery sticks, cantalope slices, more Yo Plus and hoimemade lentil soup. I do not understand how or what it is about soft wheat breads and wheat pastas that sets my son off but NOT wheat in crackers. It's a mystery to me. Perhaps it is the same thing that makes foods not Kosher for Passover- a kind of levening thing that happens when wheat is exposed to water but not heat for more than 18 minutes in it's manufacturing. I don't know.

For dinner we tried a new variation on a favorite- quick cook polenta ! Boil water, add the box, bring to a boil, stir for 5 minutes and it's done. It comes out just the same as the long cooking or even the crock pot kind. Handy to have on the shelf for a quick but healthy meal option.
We topped it with turkey sasuage sliced and cooked in a jar of marinara sauce with a tossed green salad on the side and lemon water. It gives you more volume than whole wheat pasta, and it is also fun to play with for me ! So it made for an opportunity to entertain my inner toddler twice in one day. When you consider that the inner me was entertained and the outer me was affirmed in a big way, you have to call it a very good day !

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Mondays can be good

Yesterday proved to be a very good, very balanced day for several fronts here. I am trying to switch up our menu and keep anything that has proven a problem for my son out of our diet. Makes for some interesting meals- and makes me wonder if the trigger substance for him is more yeast than gluten after all.
Breakfast was a veggie egg beater omlette on a La Tortilla high fiber lo carb wrap with baby spinach and a wedge of laughing cow lite. Strawberries, Yo Plus, water and green tea to accompany. Son was all excited and called these Mom Burritos. I was concerned that the switch from oatmeal to these would leave him hungry during the day, but that was not true. Afterwords we went out for a 40 minute walk before tackling our schoolwork for the day. We both have new MP3 players loaded with songs to motivate and take your mind off things, and it happened that both of ours happened to be playing the exact same song as we started out. We laughed about the coincidence and kept joking on the way.

Lunch was a fun shift- homemade lunchables with lentil soup. 2 Rye Crisp High Fiber crackers topped with a slice of provalone cheese and turkey breast. Cantalope, carrots, celery and yo plus on the side and water to wash it down. Lunchables have been a great big no no in this house for a long time , as they average 8-10 points and contain no fiber, too much salt, fat, transfat and questionable ingredients. Sadly they were one thing my son LOVED to get as a special treat. This is going to work out very well as a lunch option.

At dinner we tried something new to us- long grain red rice.
A quarter cup dry is 200 calories,1.5 grams fat and 4 grams fiber - 3 points to you weight watchers. It has a nutty sort of taste and aroma and comes out not at all sticky.

Dinner was grilled chicken breast, orange cauliflower, red rice, baby greens with mushrooms and lemon water to wash it down. The orange califlower was on sale this week for 49 cents a pound , and I had no room n my freezer for frozen vegetables. Made for a winning option.. After dinner we all went out for another 25 minute walk and then settled in for an evening of TV and assorted chores.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Doin it Mommy style !

It was a really nice Mother's Day here. I think we may have finally found the perfect balance in regards to our eating plan, son's autism, extended family and more. Well, at least for now that is. The morning stared with our usual oatmeal mix ( I forgot to take pictures), and church services for hubby. Son was home with me and between watching weird TV shows he kept writing me "Vilintines Day cards' featuring heart pictures that he found on line. It just kept me smiling !

Lunch was our first adventure into gluten free breads, with turkey breast and baby spinach on Brown Rice Loaf. Watermelon on the side and Yo Plus as well as water to wash it down. Should have been about a gallon of water because this bread was unbelievably dry, crumbly and tasteless. It was so bad that we pulled the turkey and spinach off to roll it up and eat it without the bread. Never again for that one. I plan on turning te rest of the loaf into bread crumbs for other uses.

After lunch we headed out for a walk and a trip to Meijers to look for supplements and a swim suit for me. Good news is that I found one and a cover up wih little problem. Bad news is the price of swimsuits ! My husband reminded me that they have been this high in comparason every time I have had to buy one. I think that is the reason I will wear them till they fall apart- sadly my last one will not get that luxury, as it is way too big to wear anymore.

Then we headed over to my mom's to wish her a Happy Mother's Day

Yep, this is the woman who taught me how to be a mom, tie my shoes, what a wife is supposed to be like and all the reasons why if you are going to lie you better keep your story straight. Like do not claim to have never eaten the cookies while you have crumbs on your face.Mom is 70 and has Dementia, and it is sadly to the point where the simple act of opening a card is more than she can understand. She knows who her family is and loves to be around them. as well as play with her hair and dance at any chance she gets. We happened to be there at the same time as 2 of my other sisters, my brother, 7 of my neices and nephews and two great grandnephews...with two more waiting to make an apperance later this year. Here are two of the next generation, who appear to be getting along as great cousin buddies
It was a great time, but we chose to leave before dinner. Not only do family gatherings mean a lot of not so healthy food, but for my son the comnbination of overstimulation from all the cousins, games and such with bad for him food equals a couple of days worth of melt down and struggling to bring him back to the light. My family understands, so no hard feelings.

Dinner was a big garden salad with carrots, grilled pork chop and corn veggie pasta. This is a winner and will definately be kept in our rotation. Lemon water to wash it down. It was very niceto come home and just kind of ease back into the normal pattern of the week. Son gave me an absolute scare twoards bedtime. He has been acting kind of odd the last week ( autistic odd) and it is going to take a couple of days to get him past the affects of the dciet ( and I have to get him to take an epson salts bath today to help. He went into his room to watch his TV, and a while later I got up to go potty and noticed he was not in his room. I looked, and i could not find him and paniced. We live on the 3rd floor, I did not hear the door open or clothes, so he has to be in the house , but where ? Turns out, ,he crawled into our bed on my side and fell sound asleep. Why ? I can only guess. We did The Family Bed with him till he was 7 yrs old, and to this day when he gets feeling insecure or scared or whatever, he crawls in our bed. I think it is a kind of a coping mechanisim, like most kids. All is well, but it gave me a real scare. Being a mom means you suddenly have your heart walking outside of your body with two feet you canot control. To possibly lose that heart is one of the scarriest things in life.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

When bread costs more than gas

Yesterday was a typical Saturday with errands, shopping and chopping. At least that is how it would appear on the surface. Small details like trying to move into a less gluten laden diet and sticker shock tell the rest of the story.

After weigh in was breakfast, which my husband made. Part of the reason was I was just not awake, and other part was a Mother's Day sort of pay it forward thing. Sunday mornings for Pastoral Musicians are working days, no matter who is being honored, and are just as busy as weekday mornings. He made our standard pumpkin oats and topped it with goji berries, coconut, ground flax, crasins, bran and olive oil. Yogert, apple , green tea on the side as well. As I ate my brain started thinking and reveiwing the week past. Yes, nuts have to go , but my thoughts also turned to my son's behaviors of the week past. Then I realized that we had eaten a rather high level of gluten in the week that had passed. Arnolds thins every day at lunch, pasta a couple of evenings. There has been a lot of talk about the impact gluten has for autistics, and there have been several who have been struggling with weight and other problems who have found relif in gluten free diets. I thought about our past track record with this , and decided it was time to try something different this week. It is a plan that is not technically gluten free, but instead focusing on foods that have not proven to be problematic for my son's issues or our weight loss journey.

So off we went to the grocery store, and while there grabbed lunch. Our store has a salad bar and hot food entree sort of bar, and their prices are great. It is a happy compromise between fast food and home cooking. We grabbed a stromboli ( not pictured) and then hit the isles. I decided to try corn pasta and Brown Rice bread this week as well as La Tortilla wraps. In the past we have had no problems with the la Tortilla wraps, so those I belive can stay. When I recover from the sticker shock of the Brown Rice bread and corn pasta, I will let you know !
Dinner was an old favorite with a new twist. Italian sausage and peppers on a La Tortilla lo carb wrap instead of the old sub sort of roll. Strawberries and carrot sticks on the side, and then an evening of Merv Griffin's crossword puzzles on the Wii ( daddy was the biggest loser, so daddy chooses)

This evening we are heading up to visit my mom for Mothers Day and catch up with family. I was presented with a homnemade card from my son, who decided all on his own to make one, and did it all on his own. The cover reads Happy Vilentines Day, and it just made me crack up and smile from ear to ear. He gets confused about holidays, and I am not a big fan of either Mothers Day or valentine's day, so this is the perfect answer from my son to his mom. I hope you all have as bright of a moment for yourself on this day !